The company behind the Polar Express train ride at Chicago’s Union Station just announced the event is cancelled for this year — but other events are still planning to go ahead. We know it’s hard to think ahead right now, but it’s time to book holiday train and trolley rides if you want to avoid wait lists later on! This year, some are moving to other formats to keep the magic alive safely. These events tend to fill up very quickly, so if you want a spot, make sure to sign up as soon as tickets become available.
2020 Polar Express Train Rides, Holiday Express, Santa Train, and Santa Trolley
Addison Polar Express
Polar Express Storytime Train
December 12 & 13 | 9:00 am – 12:30 pm
Departing from the Itasca Train Station, come join the Polar Express train with your family this holiday season. Registration is required through the Addison Park District.
Frankfort Polar Express Storytime Train
The Polar Express Storytime Train
Sunday, December 13 | 9:30 am , 11:20 am, 1:20 pm
Santa’s elves will be making balloon animals while you listen to a story. Departs at the Hickory Creek Metra Station in Mokena. Pre-registration is required through the Frankfort Park District.
La Grange Polar Express
Saturday, December 12 $21 Ages 1+ | 8:45 am – 11:03 am
All aboard this holiday train to meet Santa and receive a small gift. The train will depart from La Grange Rd. train station, and you can register through the La Grange Park District.
Lombard Polar Express
Polar Express Storytime Train (Tenative)
Sunday, December 13 $55 Ages: 2+ | 9:00 am – 12:30 pm or 1:00 – 4:30pm
Holiday train ride with a sing-a-long and story. Pre-registration required through the Butterfield Park District; see the Special Events guide for more information, and look for the Fall 2020 guide, which will contain more details.
VIP North Pole Excursion (Tenative)
Sunday, December 13 $45 Ages: 3+ | 9:30am – 12:30pm or 1:30 – 4:30pm
Join us on a magical journey to the North Pole! Families will receive VIP treatment and experience. Pre-registration required through the Butterfield Park District; see the Special Events guide for more information, and look for the Fall 2020 guide, which will contain more details.
Santa Storytime Express Bus (Tenative)
Sunday, December 13 $50 All Ages | 9:30am – 12:30pm or 1:00 – 4:00pm
Decorated express bus with a sing-a-long and story. Includes breakfast or lunch with Santa. Pre-registration required through the Butterfield Park District; see the Special Events guide for more information, and look for the Fall 2020 guide, which will contain more details.
Orland Park Santa’s North Pole Express
Santa’s North Pole Express
December 4 $23 All Ages | 3:30 pm
December 5 $23 All Ages | 3:30 pm
Santa will be meeting you at the north pole with crafts, photo opportunities, and holiday treats. Train departs from 143rd Street Metra Station. There is a lottery for the tickets, so you will need to register ASAP to try to get a spot through the Orland Park Park District.
Oswego Holiday Express
Oswego Holiday Express
December 10-13 $15 All Ages | Times vary per day
At Fox Bend Golf Course this year! This year guests will reserve spots for 12 person trips that are 10 minutes apart. You will take an imaginary train to have cookies, see a snowman, and even meet Santa himself! Register through the Oswego Park District.
Westmont Park District Storytime Train
Holly Days Storytime Train
Saturday, December 5 $18 All Ages | Departures at 11:00 am and 3:00 pm
Before you board the train, staff will read story in Westmont Centre. Then, depart the Westmont Train Station for a ride filled with entertainment, refreshments, and a chance to meet Santa. Registration is required through the Westmont Park District.
Other Possible Events
The park districts of Blooomingdale, Glen Ellyn, Elmhurst, Oak Brook, and Worth usually hold polar express or similar events and announce them in their winter guides, which aren’t out yet. Check the website links above as the fall goes on to see if the guides have arrived with details.
The following towns have do not have a Polar Express Train in their Fall Guides for the 2020 year and may be cancelled: Bensenville, Berwyn, Burr Ridge, Carol Stream, Clarendon Hills, Downers Grove, Hinsdale, Oak Park, Tinley Park, Westchester, and Wheaton. Check in the winter guides to see if plans have changed.