KCS Holiday Express

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KCS Holiday Express Christmas Train

Keep your fingers crossed and hope that Wylie is a stop for the 2021 KCS Holiday Express. 

KCS Holiday Express Christmas Train
Oak Street rail crossing near Birmingham, historic downtown Wylie

Bring the whole family to tour the KCS Holiday Express Christmas train when it stops in historic downtown Wylie. Board the train, visit with Santa and his elves and tour the inside of the festive cars, including a smiling tank car named Rudy; a flatcar carrying Santa’s sleigh, reindeer and a miniature village; a gingerbread boxcar; elves’ workshop; the reindeer stable; and a little red caboose. Each car dazzles with sparkling lights and holiday decorations.

The KCS Holiday Express, Kansas City Southern’s six-car Christmas train is pulled by the beautifully restored Southern Belle passenger train. The Southern Belle passenger train provided luxury service between Kansas City and the Gulf Coast region from 1940 to 1969. It was restored in 1995 and provides a peek into the past as well as powering the KCS Holiday Express into town.

2018 marked the 18th year the Holiday Express has crossed the country and seventh visit to Wylie.

In addition to bringing smiles to kids’ faces, the KCS Holiday Express has a charitable component. For the 15 years it’s been part of the season, the train has raised over $1 million for the Salvation Army, funds that are used to purchase warm clothing and other necessities for children in the community. This year's Wylie donation will go to the Wylie Christian Care Center.

The KCS Holiday Express began as the “Santa Train” in 2001 after volunteers dedicated over 8,000 hours to the transformation of retired rail cars. The Santa Train ran on a segment of the network bought by KCS in 1997. In 2000, some warm-hearted KCS employees noticed that the Santa Train was the only Christmas some kids had and that they lacked essential items like coats, hats and gloves. They decided to elevate the project and, in 2001, volunteers transformed a retired freight train into the festive holiday train communities know today.

Click here for an article about the history of the KCS Holiday Express that appeared in The Connection.

Holiday Express

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