Who doesn’t like a train? Especially one that’s spreading Christmas cheer? I’d never heard of The Holiday Train. Not until my friend, Hugh, brought it to my attention. Decorated from engine to caboose, the CP (Canadian Pacific) Holiday Train travels through Canada and the U.S., raising money, food and awareness.
2015 CP Holiday Train
Thousands come out to visit the train annually. Both children and adults delight in the locomotive’s decorations, music and festivities. Over the three weeks of the program, musicians play more than 150 concerts from a boxcar turned into a traveling stage.
Seen in daylight, dusk and total darkness, as well as along a river at night, it’s a beautiful sight to see. The CP Train is always flying Canadian and U.S. flags and provides live Christmas music at every stop. Food donations are encouraged and always welcome.
This is the 17th year that the Holiday Trains travel through dozens of communities, raising food and cash donations for North American food banks. As of 2014, the program had raised close to $9.5 million and 3.3 million pounds of food.
The Holiday Train program encourages people to attend events for heart healthy donations. Heart health education and awareness is a tenet of CP’s community investment program, CP Has Heart, which focuses on improving the heart health of men, women and children in communities across North America.
The two brightly lit trains kicked off in the Montreal area on November 27 and 28 on their way to visit approximately 150 communities. The “Canadian Train” travels west across Canada finishing its journey in Port Coquitlam, British Columbia. The “US Train” visits communities across the U.S. Northeast and Midwest, and returns back to Canada for shows in Saskatchewan and Alberta.
The concerts are always free, but you’re encouraged to make a donation to the local food bank — either a non-perishable food item or a cash donation. All contributions will stay in your community.