The Chicago Transit Authority once again in 2006 operated their Holiday Train starting before Thanksgiving and ending today. I had the chance to ride it 2 years ago and it was amazing to see people standing on the platform smiling as the train came into the station. It operates as a regular revenue train complete with Santa and elves.
from the CTA website
The spectacular train is an amazing sight – during the daytime and at night. The outside of the six-car train is adorned with oversized garland and seasonal images. Thousands of twinkling lights outline the shape of the train and windows, with even more lights running across the tops of the cars.
Interiors of the cars are decked out with thousands of multi-colored lights, red bows, garland, and red and green overhead lighting. The hand poles are wrapped to look like candy canes.
As the train pulls into each station, Santa waves to the boarding passengers from his sleigh on an open-air flatcar that carries his reindeer and decorated holiday trees.
I would love to see the T do something like this.
YouTube has a few clips of the train in action and if you have the time this clip in particular captures the goodwill the train provides
Chicago Transit Authority’s “Twas The Night Before…09:42
The popular Christmas story is told with the HOLIDAY TRAIN of Chicago’s CTA in the background. The train, decorated with festive lights, makes the rounds of all of the CTA routes. Share in the surprise when it pulls into stations and pass The popular Christmas story is told with the HOLIDAY TRAIN of Chicago’s CTA in the background. The train, decorated with festive lights, makes the rounds of all of the CTA routes. Share in the surprise when it pulls into stations and passengers board and are treated to a not-so-usual “L” train ride.
and I have embedded a shorter clip HO HO HO