Fox River Trolley Museum

The Christmas City Express, South Elgin
Join us for a very special journey on a very special train. New to the Fox River Trolley this year, The Christmas City Express is the story of a girl's journey to visit her grandparents for Christmas, when a snowstorm unexpectedly stops the train. Will Christmas be saved? Join the museum's professional musicians, readers, entertainers and a special guest from the north for a special train trip with delicious cookies, hot cocoa, good cheer, Christmas carols, and a special gift for good boys and girls (bad boys and girls may receive fossil fuel-based items). 

Operating at the Fox River Trolley Museum, and departing/ returning to the Jon J. Duerr Forest Preserve in South Elgin, Illinois on December 6, 7, 8, 20, 21, and 22, 2019. Please see the reservation system via the link below (available as of June 1) for available times.

Fares (varies by date)
December 6, 8: $29, December 7, 20, 21, 22: $35 

Christmas City Express, South Elgin General Information, Event Terms and Conditions

Please review the event terms and conditions and general information below carefully and completely prior to ordering tickets (ordering links at bottom of page). A ticket purchase indicates acceptance of all museum terms and conditions.


ALL passengers (i.e. ALL infants, children, adults and seniors), regardless of age, size, or seating location (seat or lap) are required to purchase and display a valid ticket. If you anticipate a joyous arrival prior to your anticipated Christmas City Express trip, please be sure to plan your ticket purchase accordingly.

Seating Arrangements

  1. Seating is provided for two adults or the equivalent per seat. Persons of size requiring additional space must purchase additional tickets as required at the time of initial ticket purchase.
  2. By virtue of the historic equipment utilized, no specific seats/ locations can be reserved, and community-style seating is practiced. To try to facilitate keeping relations as close together as possible, we reserve the right to fill empty/ unused seating space, (including but not limited to half-occupied seats).
  3. NO specific location, seating arrangements or contiguous seating for ANY group or individual can be guaranteed.
  4. Please note that there is no on-board storage for strollers, wheelchairs or other large items.

Groups/ Group Seating

  1. The museum will make reasonable attempts to accommodate groups of eight (8) or more when tickets are purchased under ONE name, and ONE transaction for the same train and ALL members of the group are present and available to board in the designated group boarding area at least 20 minutes prior to the scheduled departure time.
  2. Incomplete/ late groups and/ or late group members will be seated at the museum’s discretion.
  3. NO specific location, seating arrangements or contiguous seating for ANY group or individual can be guaranteed.

Food and Food Allergies

  • Cookies and hot cocoa are typically served as a part of the Christmas City Express experience. Please assume that any and all provided food and drink items may have come into contact with potential allergens including, but not limited to chocolate, cocoa, coconuts, eggs, fish, milk, peanuts, shellfish, soy, tree nuts, gluten and wheat. Please see ingredient list (provided items subject to change without notice).

Handicapped Accessibility

  • Unfortunately, due to the historic nature of the equipment, the Christmas City Express trains operating at the Fox River Trolley Museum on December 6, 7, 8, 20, and 22 are NOT handicapped accessible. A ramp is provided at the Jon J. Duerr Forest Preserve for those that are ambulatory.


  1. Trains are heated and pajamas are encouraged. Please be sure to dress for inclement weather so that you are comfortable with the brief walk from the parking lot to the train and waiting to board the train.
  2. Please note that there are no on-board restrooms. Camp-style lavatory facilities are provided in the Jon J. Duerr Forest Preserve shelter, adjacent to the Blackhawk station.

Event Duration

  • The Christmas City Express event is approximately one hour in duration.


  • The museum offers hard cover copies of The Christmas City Express book, which will be delivered to your family on the night of your ride. If you wish to purchase one or more copies, enter the quantity in the lower box of the ticket order form.

Boarding Location: Jon Duerr Forest Preserve
  1. Christmas City Express trains operating on December 6, 7, 8, 20, and 22 board at Blackhawk Station in the Jon J. Duerr Forest Preserve, NOT the museum.
  2. The Jon J. Duerr Forest Preserve, 35W003 Route 31, South Elgin, IL is located approximately two (2) miles south of the Fox River Trolley Museum on the east side of IL Route 31. See Google Maps for individualized directions.

Area Restaurants


Inclement Weather, Refunds and Cancellations

  1. All ticket sales are non-refundable unless a train is canceled. Generally, trains are canceled only in the case of extreme inclement weather as defined by the museum, and/or equipment failure.
  2. Patrons should plan on arriving at least 20 minutes before their scheduled departure time for Christmas City Express trains. Please factor the possibility of inclement weather into your travel plans.
  3. We are not able to hold trains for late arrivals. Trains operate as close to their published departure times as possible.

The Fox River Trolley Museum and Christmas City Express

  1. The Fox River Trolley Museum operates the Christmas City Express under license from the North Shore Scenic Railroad and affiliates as a fund-raising event, with funds used to maintain the museum and its collection of antique railcars.
  2. Tickets for Christmas City Express trains will be distributed at boarding time. To facilitate check-in and ticket distribution, please bring either a paper copy of your confirmation or have the digital version available.

Ticket Delivery

  1. Christmas City Express tickets will be distributed just prior to boarding. To facilitate the process please bring a paper copy of your purchase confirmation or display a digital version on your smart device.
  2. When purchasing tickets, the address entered MUST match the address on-file with your financial institution.
  3. Please be sure to provide a valid e-mail address when ordering online to ensure that you receive your e-mail confirmation for your ticket purchase. You may also wish to set your junk or SPAM filter to accept email from and other email addresses.

Privacy Information

  1. Personal information is generally collected to support your access of museum products or services (i.e. purchase of tickets, charter requests, joining or renewing a membership, donations to the museum, etc.). To this end, we may collect personally identifiable information ("Personal Information") which may include your name, family member names, dates of birth, contact and credit or debit card information and other related information necessary to fulfill related functions.
  2. By providing personal information, you consent to our collection and use of it, as described in the museum’s privacy policy. We use your personal information to confirm your identity for eligibility for museum related products and services, process related payments and/ or donations and administer your participation in museum events and activities.
  3. The museum, its agents and/ or related third parties may take still and/or video images of children, adults, and/ or families at the museum, riding museum equipment or participating in museum-related activities or events for use in legitimate business purposes such as, but not limited to fund raising, and promoting the museum and/ or related activities or events online and/ or in-print.

Ticketing System/ Reservations

  1.  Our Internet-based reservation system reflects all of the trains and seats available in real-time. If the system indicates “0” seats available for a train, no additional seats for that train are available. Other values are as indicated, (i.e. 20 seats remaining for a train reflects 20 seats available for that specific train).
  2.  We happily accept Discover, MasterCard, and Visa for ticket purchases. Please note, we do not accept American Express.
  3.  All available trains/ times for 2019 are available for sale as of 12:01 a.m., June 1, 2019 on a first come, first served basis. We have no plans to schedule additional times/ trains for the 2019 season. Additionally, because all available tickets are listed for sale June 1, 2019, we do not maintain a waiting list.

Christmas City Express Questions

  • If you have additional questions regarding the Christmas City Express at the Fox River Trolley Museum, please contact us at:, or call 312-473-0993.

Changes or Updates

  • The museum reserves the right to update policies, procedures, schedules, equipment, and other event related items without prior notice.

Purchase Christmas City Express, South Elgin Tickets

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