The train departs on Saturdays (Dec. 3, 10 and 17) at 10 a.m., noon, 2:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m.; and Saturday, Dec. 24, at 10 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m.
Departure times for Sundays (Dec. 4, 11 and 18) are 1 and 3 p.m.
The train cars, which date from 1919-32, are all decorated for Christmas, and Santa has a special seat in each one. The festive train rolls through the snow-covered farms, fields and across the bridges and roadways along the 7-mile route. Costumed elves will escort each child for their time to sit with the Jolly Fellow. All kids get a gift from Santa’s Big Bag — even the shy ones.
The story-telling princess will read children’s Christmas-themed books when Santa is in another train car. The uniformed conductor and trainman will punch every ticket.
Christmas music plays throughout the 90-minute ride. The railcars are heated and each has a restroom. Special seating arrangements will be made for groups of six to 60. All large groups sit together.
Full fare is $19; fare for senior citizens (60 and older) is $18; and it’s $17 for ages 2-12. Children younger than 2 get a free ticket.
The train runs even on snow days. Reservations are highly recommended. Online reservations can be made at www.MItrain.net/Santa Train; or call 616-997-7000, ext. 3, Monday through Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Some tickets will be available at the station on the days of departures.