5 on Friday: Holiday Trains in Columbus

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Here are 5 holiday train and train related events going on around Columbus during the holiday season! Your train lovers will be in heaven!

One of the fun things about the holidays is the train-related events and displays that pop up around Columbus! These holiday trains in Columbus always make our list of must-do activities in November and December!

5 Holiday Trains and Events in Columbus Ohio:

1. Holiday Train at Ohio History Connection

holiday train at Ohio History Center

There is a Lionel Model Railroad set up at the Ohio History Center during their holiday season. Kids can interact with the train set, pressing buttons to make the trains go!

If you haven’t been to Ohio History Connection (or even if you have!), it would make a great trip over Winter Break! There are lots of interactive exhibits for kids including a cabin and hands on pioneer area! There lots of mounted animals to see and a small play area for kids! 

When: Late November – Early January
Where: 800 E. 17th. Ave., Columbus OH 43211

holiday train at Ohio History Center

2. Holiday Train at Main Library

holiday train at main library, columbus

Main Library is home to the Huntington Holiday Train and every year this amazing display is set up during the holiday season! The train is usually on display through New Years!

This is a handcrafted, Paul Busse railroad that is just incredible to see! There is usually a list of items to look for in scavenger hunt fashion hanging on the fence surrounding the railroad! Make sure to climb the steps to look down on the railroad and see it from a new angle!

When: Mid November – Early January
Where: 96 S. Grant Ave. Columbus, OH 43215

holiday train at Main Library, Columbus, Ohio

3. Holiday Open House at Central Ohio Model Railroad Club

boy in front of a model railroad

Every Saturday and Sunday in December you can visit Central Ohio Model Railroad Club during their Holiday Open House. They have an extensive lay out including an interactive Thomas the Train set up. Admission is free!

When: Each Saturday and Sunday in December from 12:00-4:00 PM.
Where: 6471 Proprietors Rd., Worthington, OH 43085

Central Ohio Model Railroad Open House

4. Paul Busse Holiday Train at Franklin Park Conservatory

Paul Busse Holiday railroad at Franklin Park Conservatory

Conservatory Aglow offers special holiday decorations, performances and evening hours at Franklin Park Conservatory. There is always a beautiful train display created from natural materials! The train circles the display while the display itself is turning in circles!

You can see this train throughout the daytime hours for regular admission or stop by in the evenings (after 5:00 PM) for special performances and activities for a special engagement rate. (Members receive half off.)

When: November 16, 2019 – January 5, 2020: 10:00 AM — 9:00 PM
Where: 1777 E. Broad St., Columbus, OH 43203

Paul Busse Holiday train at Franklin Park Conservatory

5. Holiday Trains and Letters to Santa at Ohio Railway Museum

Train at Ohio Railway Museum

Photo provided by Ohio Railway Museum

Ohio Railway Museum hosts Letters To Santa on December 8th, 9th, 15th, 16th, 22nd and 23rd (2018). (awaiting 2019 dates) Kids can write a letter to santa and mail it in the Railroad Post office Car and there will be craft making for kids! 

When: Select weekends in December
Where: 990 Proprieters Rd., Worthington, OH 43085

  • If you have kids that love trains, you should plan a trip to EnterTRAINment Junction, an amazing train museum open all year round!

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ICYMI: 10 of Our Favorite Columbus Christmas Traditions


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1 reply
  1. Jack Minute
    Jack Minute says:

    Julie, Thank you for these ideas. I have a nephew who absolutely loves trains. Was wondering where to take him to that will “blow his mind” during the holidays. We’ll be definitely checking out your recommendations.

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