Thomas the Tank Engine coming to Calera
By Nathan Howell / Staff Writer
CALERA — Thomas the Tank Engine will be pulling into the Heart of Dixie Railroad Museum in Calera from March 29-31 and April 6-7.
The nationwide tour, presented by Mattel, titled “Day Out With Thomas: The Steam Tour 2019” will give families with children of all ages an opportunity to spend a day with Thomas the Tank Engine.
The event will offer multiple opportunities for a 25-minute ride on Thomas as well as a meet and greet with Sir Topham Hatt, controller of the railway. There will also be a wide array of Thomas themed activities at the Thomas and Friends Imagination Station.
“The tour, now in its 24th year, will make 37 stops across the U.S. and Canada and is expected to welcome nearly one million passengers in 2019,” according to a press release for the event.
“Families from throughout Alabama and the Southeast choose to come and spend time with us to see their favorite big blue engine and to have a day of family fun,” said Jim Garnett, Heart of Dixie President. “It’s also a fundraiser for our organization to continue to exist and to offer year-round family fun and historic, educational opportunities to schools and to the community.”
According to Garnett, the appeal of the event is not only to provide a day of excitement for the children, but “the appeal of Sodor and Thomas and Friends is just one way to get children interested in learning about trains as they get older.”
Vendors will be present at the event to provide food and exclusive Thomas and Friends merchandise to the visitors.
Garnett said that they were expecting upwards of 8,000 guests at the railroad for the event.
Tickets for ages 2 and up can be purchased for $22 by visiting Dayoutwiththomas.com.