Out of concern for our patrons and volunteers – and in consultation with old Saint Nick himself – the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society has decided not to operate its Santa Train this December.
This decision was reached after reviewing numerous financial, logistical, and health-related concerns, and also in discussions with our rail tourism partners in Indiana. It has been made in the interest of public safety and in deference to state guidelines on public gatherings.
“The Santa Train is a family-friendly event, and the unique, cherished experience with Santa aboard our historic train is the highlight,” stated Society vice-president Kelly Lynch.
“While we explored several alternative experiences, COVID-19’s impact on our Allen County is burdening our local health care community, and the number of cases continues to rise. Ultimately we determined that it was in the best interest of everyone to withdraw the event for the year,” Lynch said.
The Santa Train has also become an important annual fundraiser for the organization, and its annulment represents a notable financial loss.
Donations to offset this financial loss can be made online at fortwaynerailroad.org. Additionally, several Christmas items will be made available through the organization’s online store in December.
The Santa Train has become one of the community’s favorite traditions for over 20 years, welcoming thousands of people each season from the tri-state region. Its origins began over 70 years ago with the Pennsylvania Railroad and Wolf and Dessauer Santa Train which visited Fort Wayne each season.