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Holiday Express Runs Three Weekends

December 1, 2012 @ 8:00 am - December 16, 2012 @ 5:00 pm

Event:                        8th Annual Holiday Express

Dates:                       November 30, December 1, 2; December 7, 8, 9, and 14, 15, 16



Departure Times:    Fridays: 2, 3, 4; 6, 7, 8pm

                                  Saturdays & Sundays: 10, 11 am, Noon; 2, 3, 4; 6, 7, 8pm



Location                   The Oaks Station, 7806 SE Oaks Park Way, Portland, Oregon 97202

 For Holiday Express ticket information go to TicketsWest Ticket Centers, website www.TicketsWest.com or call 503-224-8499.



Holiday Express Trains to Run Three Weekends


Since December 2005 the Oregon Rail Heritage Foundation’s Holiday Express has brought together generations of families and friends to ride along the Willamette River on the Oregon Pacific Railroad in southeast Portland.  This year the Holiday Express will run an additional weekend, starting on Friday afternoon, November 30th. Holiday Express is Oregon’s only holiday train pulled by mainline steam engines.

For the last seven years the lure of historic steam locomotives has drawn over 40,000 people to ride on the Holiday Express. Passengers in vintage cars view Oaks Bottom, the Willamette River and the West Hills during the 40-minute ride. Strung with lights and with each car decorated inside with its own holiday theme, the train leaves The Oaks Station at Oaks Amusement Park in Portland’s Sellwood neighborhood. By the time Santa makes his way through the train it’s as if everyone aboard has been transported to a different time and place.

Community Sponsorships Stoke the Holiday Express

All proceeds from the Holiday Express will go to the new Oregon Rail Heritage Center. Fred Meyer Inc. is the event’s corporate sponsor. The Holiday Express is also made possible through partnerships with the Oregon Pacific Railroad, Oaks Amusement Park and Portland Parks and Recreation.

A Most Unusual Tire

It takes 1,000 volunteer hours for a steam locomotive to be excursion-ready. In addition to the standard checklist of tasks, the Spokane, Portland & Seattle 700 also needed to replace a tire in time to run the first weekend.  (The Southern Pacific 4449 will pull trains the last two weekends.)

Neither the machining equipment in the Oregon Rail Heritage Center nor any machine shop in the area could fabricate a 77” diameter steel tire weighing over 1,000 pounds. To prepare the SP&S 700 in time, Pacific Railroad Preservation Association (PRPA) volunteers started working to get a new tire in early October.

“We had to custom order a replacement tire and have it shipped all the way from South Carolina,” said Dr. Charles Harrison, PRPA president.

Locomotives Accessible to Public at Oregon Rail Heritage Center

The new Oregon Rail Heritage Center in the OMSI District is now the permanent home for Portland’s three historic steam engines – the Spokane, Portland & Seattle 700, the Southern Pacific 4449, and the Oregon Railroad & Navigation 197. The equally historic retinue of vintage milling machines, lathes and a hydraulic press all moved from the Brooklyn Roundhouse to join the locomotives at the Center in late June 2012.

The Oregon Rail Heritage Center is open to the public Thursdays-Sundays 1pm-5pm.

Perfect Location for New Facility

The Oregon Rail Heritage Center is at the hub of rail activity. Shortline and mainline railroads, the Eastside Streetcar and future Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail line surround the property. The new facility is strategically located across from OMSI. With the 2015 opening of the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail line there will be over 100 years of passenger rail travel represented in the district.

For Holiday Express ticket information go to TicketsWest Ticket Centers, website www.TicketsWest.com or call 503-224-8499.


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NOTE: The Oregon Rail Heritage Foundation is dedicated to making our rail excursions accessible to everyone. Unfortunately, the structural features of these historic rail cars limit access for visitors who use wheelchairs or other wheeled devices, at this time. For more information, go to the ORHF website at www.orhf.org.


December 1, 2012 @ 8:00 am
December 16, 2012 @ 5:00 pm
Event Category:


The Oaks Station
7806 SE Oaks Park Way
POTLAND, 97202 United States
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