The Canadian Pacific Holiday Train drew spectators of all ages as it stopped in both Waseca and Janesville last week.
On Thursday, Dec. 5 the brightly lit holiday train made its first stop in the county as rolled into Waseca at 5:15 p.m. with the show beginning shortly after arriving.
At the rail crossing on State Street both sides were closed off to traffic to make room for the crowd gathered to see the lights and listen to the concert performed by Meghan Patrick, Tanika Charles and Kelly Prescott.
“It’s really cool. It’s really exciting, especially for all the little ones,” Waseca spectator Jill Possin said.
The 1,000-foot train, made up of 14 rail cars, was decked out in hundreds of thousands of lights shaped like snowflakes, snowmen, bells and even Christmas trees among many others on both sides. Some of the rail cars had scenes of the North Pole and Santa’s Sleigh or a train filled with elves that people were able to see go by.
Canadian Pacific local workers teamed up with local authorities for crowd and traffic control during the event to ensure everyone was safe.
Once the show began the crowd closed in as close as they could get to the railcar to watch the show that lasted for about 30 minutes, in both Waseca and Janesville. The show was filled with numerous Christmas and holiday songs along with some of the artists’ own music.
The performers not only entertained the crowd as well as including them with singalongs and dancing.
During the show in Waseca, Mayor Roy Srp and Waseca Food Shelf representatives came out on stage to accept a donation check of $5,000 for the local food shelf.
During the performance in Janesville a check was presented to the Janesville food shelf for $4,500.
Part of the holiday train run by Canadian Pacific is giving back to local communities.
Since the beginning in 1999 the holiday train has raised more than $15.8 million CAD and 4.5 million pounds of food for North American food banks. There is a donation made to each stop as well from Canadian Pacific.
In Janesville the holiday train stopped in Memorial Park in town where hot chocolate and other treats were available. The holiday train came into Janesville about 7 p.m. with a similar show as Waseca starting shortly after the arrival.
“It really is amazing to see the number of people come out and the amount of time and work Canadian Pacific put in to this for our community,” Shawn Hartman of Janesville said. “It really is a wonderful thing for our community.”