The Christmas spirit will be out in full force this Saturday, Dec. 10, as Operation North Pole (ONP) hosts its annual train ride to see Santa for children with serious illnesses and their families.
Metra urges families to become a part of this special event by lining the Union Pacific Northwest Line route between the Pingree Road Station in Crystal Lake and the Cumberland Station in Des Plaines to cheer on these children as they make their way to the North Pole for a visit and party with Santa at his workshop.
The event also marks their official unveiling of this year’s holiday-themed train wrap. The train is scheduled to depart Pingree Road at 12:10 p.m. and will pass through the communities of Crystal Lake, Cary, Fox River Grove, Barrington, Palatine and Arlington Heights before arriving at approximately 12:50 p.m. in Des Plaines.
ONP, a 501(c) (3) public charity, founded in 2009, is devoted to bringing the joy of the season to children suffering from life-threatening illnesses and their families by providing a fun-filled day of respite, including the train ride, breakfast with Mrs. Claus and a visit with Santa at his workshop. This year, 71 families will depart on a chartered Metra train at 11:20 a.m. at the Des Plaines Metra Station (1501 Miner St.). Upon their return to Des Plaines, the families will be escorted to the Rosemont Convention Center, where Santa is waiting to host a special holiday party and visit to his workshop.
The charity has wrapped holiday themed train cars and a locomotive since 2011 and has once again partnered with the Village of Rosemont to wrap all cars and the locomotive. The train will remain wrapped for the entire holiday season, delighting young and old as it whisks by on Metra’s Union Pacific lines. Metra and Union Pacific Railroad are proud to be contributing sponsors to this annual event.
For more information on Operation North Pole’s work and how to contribute or participate go to: operationnorthpole.org.