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Colorado Railroad Museum

Train superstar makes annual Golden visit

Thomas returns to Railroad Museum


Thomas the Tank Engine is seen as just as much of a rock star among preschoolers as The Beatles among teens in the 1960s, said Donald Tallman, the executive director of the Colorado Railroad Museum.

“Thomas is multigenerational,” Tallman said. “He connects families in a very special way.”

Thomas the Tank Engine is making his annual return to the Colorado Railroad Museum in Golden on June 24 and 25, July 1 and 2 and July 8 and 9.

A train ride ticket is required for all attendees age 2 and older. General admission is not available during Day Out With Thomas dates. Tickets cost $20 each during off-peak ride times, 8:30-9:15 a.m. and 1:45-4:45 p.m. Tickets for peak ride times, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., cost $25 each.

A train ride lasts 20 minutes. Thomas partners with the railroad museum’s Locomotive No. 491 to pull the 1928 Denver & Rio Grande Western Steam Locomotive around the railyard. And now, Tallman added, Thomas even talks and greets riders as he pulls into the depot.

A ticket includes access to museum exhibits and model trains, and special Day Out With Thomas activities, which include a petting zoo, temporary tattoos, the Imagination Station, sing-a-longs, bean bag toss, hula hoops, bubbles, ladder golf and a magic show. Attendees will also have an opportunity to meet the character Sir Topham Hatt.

It is recommended to plan a two-hour visit to enjoy all the Thomas activities, Tallman said.

A wide range of food vendors will be available for lunch, snack or dessert purchases. Families may also bring a picnic lunch but there are no lockers or storage facilities onsite. Both alcohol and cooking are prohibited.

The museum opens at 8 a.m. Activities will shut down at 5 p.m. and the grounds will close by 6 p.m. Riders should plan on arriving at least one hour before their train departs, as it is sometimes difficult to reschedule a missed train ride. Families may stay afterward for as long as they would like to enjoy the activities.

It’s one thing for children to see Thomas in a picture book or play with a small-scale model toy of him, Tallman said.

“But to see him in person and ride behind a full-size Thomas is a really special experience for families,” he added.


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