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Hopping down the Bunny Train

Marie Havenga • Mar 14, 2016 at 8:00 AM

Cayden Cremer had never been on a train before.

And he had never been entertained by a singing bunny, duck and lamb before, either.

But on Sunday, Cayden, 4, chugged down the Coopersville & Marne Railway tracks toward Marne on the Bunny Train, clapping along with the fun.

“I liked it when the duck came out,” said Cayden, of West Olive, sitting in the 1920 train car.

Like the other children on the inaugural weekend run of the annual Easter-themed trek, Cayden got to pick out a toy. He chose miniature cars. His friend picked a stuffed white bunny rabbit.

Angela Peavey, who has played the bunny on the Coopersville & Marne Railway for the last 13 years, hopped to it Sunday afternoon, thrilling guests in car number 3.

“I love the energy on the train,” Peavey said. “I love the kids and how they get excited about the season. They're really the ones who bring the energy to us.”

Matthew Fowler, who plays Fowler the Duck, jokingly tried to convince passengers they were on the “duck train.”

Fowler filled in on the train one year, got hooked, and now is a regular quacking jokes and high-fiving passengers.

Miss Coopersville, Shelby Meintsma, read stories to the children as the train rolled to Marne and back. And the other characters led passengers in song and dance, hopping down the aisle to the tunes of “Here Comes Peter Cottontail,” “Little Bunny Foo Foo” and more.

Rob Cloinger and his family drove from Watervliet Sunday for their first trip down the tracks.

“We drove an hour and a half and we're having a great time,” Cloinger said. “It's very entertaining and it's pretty nostalgic, too.”

Rob's son, Jake, 1, reached out to touch the bunny as they posed for photo.

“I just wish he was a little older so he would appreciate it a little more,” Cloinger said.

The Bunny Train continues weekends through March 26.

Visit www.coopersvilleandmarne.org for more information.

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