Kansas City Southern has announced its 9th annual Holiday Express train (attached), which will stop in 20 communities in five U.S. states on 25 dates. Visitors can board the train, meet Santa and his elves and tour the inside of three cars of the festive six-car train. Each event is free and open to the public.
It will stop Joplin on Sunday, December 15. Location and access details will be made available from the Joplin Convention and Visitors Bureau closer to the event date. Watch for announcements on City's Facebook page and/or https://www.visitjoplinmo.com/
In addition, KCS’ Holiday Express has a charitable component. Over the past 18 years, the project has raised over $2.1 million, which was donated to The Salvation Army at each scheduled stop to help provide warm clothing and other necessities for children in need in the local community.
“KCS is thrilled to bring joy to communities throughout our network with the Holiday Express project,” said KCS president and chief executive officer Patrick J. Ottensmeyer. “This special tradition brings people together, strengthens community ties and supports our corporate values.”
Anyone interested in making a tax-deductible contribution to the 2019 KCS Holiday Express fundraising campaign may do so by visiting http://www.kcsouthern.com/corporate-responsibility/giving/holiday-express. The campaign will close November 14th.
The KCS Holiday Express was built on the tradition of the Santa Train, which ran on a segment of the network bought by KCS in 1997. In 2000, a group of warm-hearted KCS employees noticed that the Santa Train was the only Christmas some kids had, and that some kids did not have essential items like coats, hats and gloves, so they committed to elevating the project. In 2001, volunteers transformed a retired freight train to the KCS Holiday Express experience that thousands enjoy every year.
Led by KCS’ Southern Belle business train, the Holiday Express train includes a smiling tank car “Rudy”; a flat car carrying Santa’s sleigh, reindeer and a miniature village; a gingerbread boxcar; an elves’ workshop; the reindeer stable; and a little red caboose. Each car is dressed in lights.
Headquartered in Kansas City, MO., KCS is a transportation holding company that has railroad investments in the U.S., Mexico and Panama. Its primary U.S. holding is The Kansas City Southern Railway Company, serving the central and south-central U.S. Its international holdings include Kansas City Southern de Mexico, S.A. de C.V., serving northeastern and central Mexico and the port cities of Lázaro Cárdenas, Tampico and Veracruz, and a 50 percent interest in Panama Canal Railway Company, providing ocean-to-ocean freight and passenger service along the Panama Canal. KCS’ North American rail holdings and strategic alliances with other North American rail partners are primary components of a unique railway system, linking the commercial and industrial centers of the U.S., Mexico and Canada.