By Jeffra DeViney
The City of DeQuincy, DeQuincy Police Department, DeQuincy Chamber of Commerce, DeQuincy Railroad Museum and many clubs and businesses joined together to roll out the red carpet for the 2019 Holiday Express Train on Friday, Dec. 6, at the DeQuincy Railroad Museum Park.
Like a script from a Hallmark movie, everyone joined together and worked hard to make this event “A Railroad Town Christmas.” A total of 3,099 people toured the wonderfully decorated train. Over 30 booths joined with DeQuincy Chamber of Commerce to offer food/drink concessions and holiday shopping.
The DeQuincy Railroad Museum opened their doors for self-guided tours and sold miniature trains and other gifts. Several city employees volunteered as elves to help on the train. City crews decorated the Railroad Museum to make it a spectacular venue for the train stop.
DeQuincy Federated Service League, along with the City of DeQuincy, donated snow for children to play in at the DeQuincy Memorial Hospital’s booth. There was so much joy on their faces!
In addition to local support, tremendous credit goes to KCS volunteers. They included a lot of hard working people who put the KCS Holiday Express Train together. There was a head elf who ran the show. Three chefs fed the crew. Two mechanical workers took care of the engines and cars. Eight porters cleaned the Southern Belle and set up and served as elves on the Holiday Express.
There are usually about 15 volunteers working as elves for Santa. They get together as a group and stuff the goody bags.
It takes a lot of hard work to bring the Christmas event to communities but these volunteers love doing it. Along its rail network, Holiday Express stops at 20 communities in five states on 25 dates.
Guests to the train visited with Santa Claus after touring the brightly lit rail cars, filled with holiday displays.
This year’s crew expressed their excitement to return to DeQuincy. They said they appreciated the wonderful response from the town with all the other events coinciding with their visit. In fact, they spied Rudy on our Chamber Christmas shirts and just had to have one! A special order is being made for these terrific volunteers.
Santa, Belle and Rudy, please come back next year, we promise to be good!