MISSOULA - Lowell Elementary School first grade students were able to recreate the classic holiday story and take a ride on the Montana Rail Link (MRL) Polar Express on Wednesday morning.
MRL worked with the Missoula Children's Theatre to bring the story to life. Communication specialist Andy Garland says MRL works hard to make the event as fun as possible.
“Just a lot of work behind the scenes from all of our folks at MRL, across all of our departments, our maintenance, our mechanical and transportation folks help out a ton,” Garland explained. “The children’s theatre does a fantastic job, it’s a lot of hands coming together to make a really fun event for the kids.”
The kids listened to narrator Kevin Harrington read a classic tale. He said he’s just happy to create a special memory like this.
“I had very fond memories of reading this book with my mother as a child as well, and anytime you can help somebody else make a Christmas memory or you know an event like this, especially one that’s so unique, it’s about as special as it gets.”
There was also hot chocolate served just like in the movie — as well as games, cookies, and many Christmas carols.
Near the end of their trip, the students were given the best surprise of all — Santa Claus. Santa gave the kids their own copy of Polar Express and asked them what they wanted for Christmas.
The train pulled back into Missoula around 11 a.m., and the kids were ecstatic over the ride. This was the fourth year MRL has conducted the Holiday Express.