Posts Tagged ‘north carolina trains’

polar expressOver 42,000 passengers rode The Polar Express™ with the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad in 2011 and we hope to see you this year! The 1 ¼ hour round-trip excursion comes to life as the train departs the Bryson City depot for a journey through the quiet wilderness for a special visit at the North Pole.

Set to the sounds of the motion picture soundtrack, guests on board will enjoy warm cocoa and a treat while listening and reading along with the magical story. Children’s faces show the magic of the season when the train arrives at the “North Pole” to find Santa Claus waiting.

Santa will board THE POLAR EXPRESS, greeting each child and presenting them with a special gift as in the story, their own silver sleigh bell. Christmas carols will be sung as they return back to the Bryson City Depot. THE POLAR EXPRESS begins November 9th and operates through December 30th. View the 2012 departure schedule here!

For more information, visit: http://www.gsmr.com/create-content/event/polar-express/polar-express-0

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Excursion Travelers Can Enjoy Civil War History and a Great Harvest Festival with Trips Planned to Appomattox, Va. and Toccoa, Ga.

N.C. Transportation Museum & Watauga Valley Railroad Historical Society & Museum Autumn Train Excursion Tickets Are On Sale Now, Rolling Out Nov. 3 and 4

SPENCER – An extremely popular offering from the N.C.TransportationMuseum and the Watauga Valley Railroad Historical Society & Museum is just a few months from rolling down the tracks. This year’s Autumn Train Excursions will travel to Appomattox, Va. Saturday, Nov. 3 and Toccoa, Ga. Sunday, Nov. 4.

These excursions provide the rare opportunity to take a daylight train trip on vintage rail cars through beautiful countryside during the autumn leaf-peeping season. Passengers can enjoy the romance of riding the rails and with great destinations. Tickets for the museum’s Autumn Train Excursions typically sell out and some options are already unavailable. Those wishing to purchase are urged to act quickly.

These one-day trips are presented by the N.C. Transportation Museum Foundation and the Watauga Valley Chapter of the National Railway Historical Society and act as fundraisers for both organizations.

The Virginia Autumn Special will depart from Spencer, N.C., with additional passenger pick-up at the Greensboro Amtrak Station. The train will travel through the northern portion of the North Carolina Piedmont before crossing into central Virginia. Passengers will be treated to spectacular views as the train crests the WhiteOakMountain and crosses the Dan and RoanokeRivers on its way to Lynchburg, where it will turn east toward Appomattox.

Passengers will disembark at the restored Appomattox Station, once a stop for the South Side Railroad in the late 1800s and now home to the AppomattoxVisitorInformationCenter. This charming small town holds claim to one of the most significant moments in U.S. history—the surrender of General Robert E. Lee to end the Civil War and reunited a divided nation.

Virginia Autumn Special passengers can enjoy the historic shops and restaurants of Appomattox’s quaint downtown, or, for a nominal additional fee, explore either the AppomattoxCourtHouseNationalHistoricalPark, or the Museum of the Confederacy’s newly-opened Appomattox site. Shuttle buses will provide transportation to both sites. We strongly recommend that passengers planning to visit either of these sites pack a lunch, pre-purchase a box lunch, or plan to purchase lunch on the café car, due to time limitations at the destination.

The Georgia Autumn Special will depart from Spencer, N.C., with additional passenger pick up at the Spartanburg Amtrak Station before traversing what was once Southern Railway’s main line, running from Washington, D.C. to Atlanta, Ga. Passengers will enjoy the gala fall colors of Carolinas’ rolling foothills, before crossing the 100-foot Seneca River trestle spanning Lake Hartwell to arrive at Toccoa.

Nestled into the foothills of the Southern Appalachian Mountains, the historic town will be bustling with activity during the 30th annual Harvest Festival. Passengers will have approximately three hours to enjoy the festival, which features handmade, handcrafted and home-grown items from more than 200 vendors, as well as delicious regional foods, great entertainment on two stages, children and youth activities, buggy rides and much more.

ToccoaFalls, named for the Cherokee word “Toccoah” meaning beautiful, is a must see. Located on the campus of ToccoaCollege, the 186-foot falls are 26 feet taller than Niagara Falls. Shuttle buses will be making a continuous loop between downtown Toccoa and ToccoaFalls.

Several seating options and pricing are available for excursion passengers. Prices are the same for each destination.

Tourist Class features the convenience and comforts of modern Amtrak cars. Each car has a center aisle with two adjustable seats and a wide window on each side. This seating area provides convenient access to the Souvenir and Cafe cars. Tourist class seating is $150 per person.

Deluxe Coach Class passenger cars feature spacious seating with adjustable seat backs and leg rests, as well as large windows for better viewing. Lunch will be served in vintage lounge and dining cars. Light snacks and beverages are also provided. Deluxe Coach Class seating is $185 per person. This option is already sold out for our Appomattox trip.

Premium First Class passengers will be seated in restored, vintage lounge or parlor cars. Each car is configured differently with a variety of seating options. Compartment seating is also available for small groups (only available with phone orders. Fare includes continental breakfast, newspapers, light snacks and dinner. Premium first Class seating is $260 per person Compartment seating is also available for groups of two, three or four at a reduced price. Compartment seating is only available with phone orders.

Featuring two levels, Dome cars offer the best views of the passing scenery. Windows stretch

across the walls and ceiling on the second level, providing a panoramic view of the entire ride.

Tickets include a continental breakfast and newspapers on the journey plus dinner on the return trip served in vintage lounge and dining cars. Dome tickets are $295 per person. This option is already sold out for our Appomattox trip.

Passengers that do not have lunch included in their ticket package have the option of a gourmet box lunch. Delivered to your seat, passengers can save time for shopping and sightseeing. Served in a souvenir tote, the meal includes chicken salad on a croissant, pasta salad, fresh fruit, homemade pound cake and a drink. Box lunches, available for $15 per person, should be ordered in advance with your ticket purchase. Those taking advantage of Saturday’s visit to the Appomattox Court House and Museum of the Confederacy are strongly encouraged to take advantage of this option.

Tickets can be purchased by calling Sara Gettys at 704-636-2889 ext. 237 or visiting online at www.nctrans.org.

The North Carolina Transportation Museum Foundation and the Watauga Valley Railroad Historical Society & Museum are non-profit organizations.

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By Shavonne Potts

spotts@salisburypost.com

SPENCER — Rail fans from as far as Japan and England will descend upon the N.C. Transportation Museum today and Wednesday for what has been hailed as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

To commemorate Norfolk Southern Corp.’s 30th anniversary, the Norfolk Southern Heritage Locomotive fleet is on display for a couple of days at the museum.

Continue Reading…

View amazing photos and videos from The Norfolk Southern Corp.’s 30th Anniversary, please visit the NC Transportation Museum’s FACEBOOK PAGE.

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Bryson City, NC – Bid farewell to 2011 and join the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad in bringing in the New Year! Spend the evening rolling along the tracks while dancing the night away!

On Saturday, December 31, enjoy an evening of live music, dancing, dinning and celebration!  The terrific duo Alias Smith & Jones will be the featured entertainment for the evening. Alias Smith & Jones is a superb Atlanta-based acoustic guitar/vocal duo whose vast repertoire ranges from the must-have classics to the totally unexpected.  Satisfy your tastes buds with an elegant three-course dinner on board a vintage dining car at the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad. Complete the evening with a countdown to the midnight hour with party favors and a champagne toast to 2012! The train will depart from the Bryson City, NC depot at 9:00 pm and will feature the exquisite cuisine of Chef Deborah Douthit.

Let the evening begin early with a reception beginning at 7:45pm in the Smoky Mountain Trains Museum with a special selection of beer, wine, and mixed drinks.  Enjoy an array of hors d’oeuvres including tiger shrimp with cocktail sauce, button mushrooms stuffed with shrimp and crab parmesan filling, steak and roasted pepper skewers and fruit covered in rich chocolate! After kicking the night off with the fabulous reception boarding will promptly begin at 8:45pm.

Once on board the train, first course features a salad made of fresh baby greens in a raspberry vinaigrette dressing and warm yeast rolls. Choose from our selection of delicious entrées; spinach stuffed chicken with a creamy parmesan sauce, seasoned pork loin served with a tart raspberry glaze and portobello mushroom tower stuffed with smoked peppers, spinach and parmesan cheese. Complete your feast with a tasty rich white chocolate cheesecake covered with fresh berries! Served buffet style guests can mingle, relax, indulge on delicious food and greet the New Year in style!

Adults 21 and over only.  Dinner Train tickets are $135 per person (plus tax & gratuity). Three hour trip departs at 9:00 pm at the historic Bryson City Depot. Advanced reservations & 72 hour cancellation notice are required. PLEASE CALL FOR DRESS CODE INFORMATION.

For more information and reservations call 800-872-4681 or WWW.GSMR.COM.

Great Smoky Mountains Railroad is a proud member of the American Heritage Railways family. Visit our sister railroads in southwest Colorado at the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad and in east Texas at the Texas State Railroad.

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CAROLINA WONDERLAND EXPRESS
An indoor holiday railway  |  NOVEMBER 5 – JANUARY 15

Start a new family holiday tradition and join us for the inaugural Wonderland Express  holiday train exhibition at the Museum of Life and Science in Durham.

This handcrafted exhibition made of natural materials and designed by the award-winning artisans of Applied Imagination, is sure to immerse you in a magical world. Watch as model trains journey through a snowy Carolina, traversing mountains, crossing bridges and disappearing through tunnels.

Bells ring and whistles blow as trains chug along the Blue Ridge Parkway and journey to popular landmarks such as Kitty Hawk, the State Capitol Building and Jennette’s Pier.With more than 340 feet of track winding in and out of hills and valleys, this 2,200-square-foot, indoor holiday exhibition is sure to delight all ages.

Cost: Members  $4 per person
General public  $5 per person, plus the cost of admission
Purchase tickets at the Admissions Desk
http://www.ncmls.org/visit/events/wonderland-express

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Welcome to The Great Smoky Mountains Railroad where you can see the Smokies in Style! We are located in the heart of Bryson City, North Carolina. Your journey begins in Bryson City! Our scenic rail excursions takes you from our historic depot through the beautiful countryside of Western North Carolina. Our variety of train excursions and special event trains makes us perfect for making memories with your friends and families! Dine in our First Class Cars with a private attendant and breathtaking views or take it all in while riding in an open air gondola! Step on board for your next rail adventure!

Reservations Line: 800-872-4681
Group Sales: 800-872-4681 x3

Experience the Magic this season…. http://www.gsmr.com/

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