A real-life version of the 'The Polar Express' will ride this coming Christmas in Batesville, Mississippi.
'The Polar Express' is a Christmas children's book classic about a magical train that travels to the North Pole. Iowa Pacific Holdings, operator of Grenada Railway, made an announcement that they will operate the said mystical express starting November 20 and will end on December 27. They estimated about 30,000 to 40,000 people to ride the Christmas train as it travels between Southaven and Canton, Mississippi.
The train company has also expressed intent to open a 90-mile track between Grenada and Canton. The said track was closed 3 years ago. Aside from opening unused tracks before The Polar Express ride starts, Batesville authorities are also making it a point to complete upgrading the sidewalks and parking in the railroad depot. They intend to make some changes to the Panola Country Courthouse as well. This is to accommodate the incoming people travelling this holidays.
'All the merchants are excited about it. They're going to stay open extra time to take advantage of those people who'll be coming from out of town. It will impact our restaurants and hotels, because people drive 150 miles or more to take the train.' Sonny Simmons, Chief Executive of Panola Partnership, said.
Travellers will be able to ride The Polar Express at $20 to $85 per person. The passengers are also encouraged to wear pajamas in order to recreate the experience even more. They will be able to see wondrous characters from the children's book like Santa Claus and the elves that dance as they serve hot chocolate and cookies to the guests. Of course, the book is also available for the passengers to read as they ride the Christmas excursion.
Aside from the entertainment the creative train will bring this Christmas, it will also provide employment for the locals.