Midwest Holiday Open Houses


photo by Nick Resar

All of the planning and weeks of decorating paid off as the annual Christmas Open House events went off without a hitch. Over 500 visitors attended the open houses over the two weekends and for the first time, the Saturday events included evening hours. The grounds shone bright with lighted walkways and decorations, and lights strung on 123 and Mt. Baxter could be seen from as far away as Tremont and the I-490 bridge.

The weather cooperated for the most part although there was a stray shower and some cold temperatures, but for Santa and his elves the temperatures were more moderate than their North Pole home.

Drawings were held on the final Sunday for the Midwest bass guitar and amplifier ensemble and also for the Lionel train layout. Proceeds from those raffles were for the benefit of the building fund and 4070 restoration fund respectively. Winner of the guitar was Rob Kress who bought his tickets earlier that same day. Douglas Seifert held the lucky ticket for the train layout.

Planning for the 2020 Open House schedule begins soon and the dates will be announced as soon as they are available. If anyone has any suggestions for the events feel free to contact the office and voice your opinion.

Tour guide Pete Stojsavljevic points out some of the interesting sights during his group's train ride

The parlor of the America was all decorated for the Christmas Open House

The boiler of 4070 was lit for display as the locomotive sat on the turntable, photo by Nick Resar

The Grinch visited MRPS for the first time ever and posed while waiting to hand out coal to deserving children

Two young visitors were mesmerized by the light display on the grounds while enjoying their ride on Mt. Baxter after dark

Santa welcomed visitors in the caboose in stall 3 of the roundhouse

Santa poses with his elf assistant

The B&O wagon top caboose was lit up to welcome visitors as they drove through the gate

Mt. Baxter sported lights and decorations inside and out