Santa Claus is coming to town — via Marquette Rail

Marquette Rail’s Santa Express will make 14 stops along its line between Grand Rapids and Manistee on Saturday. It will stop in Stronach at 6:40 p.m. and in Manistee at 7:25 p.m. (News Advocate File Photo)

MANISTEE — For the seventh consecutive year, Marquette Rail will be operating its Santa Express train on Saturday — leaving the Grand Rapids area in the morning and stopping at a number of towns on the way to Manistee at the end of the line.

At each of the stops Santa and Mrs. Claus will be greeting children and handing out candy. Marquette Rail is partnering with Jim Nickelson’s Christmas Trees of Ludington and Millers Produce of Manistee to distribute trees at each stop to pre-selected drawing winners. The Santa Express will leave Comstock Park at 9:50 a.m. and after stops in Sparta, Kent City, Grant, Newaygo, White Cloud, and Bitely, will arrive in Baldwin at 2:10 p.m., Scottville at 3:15 p.m., Ludington at 3:50 p.m., Fountain at 5:15 p.m., Free Soil at 6:05 p.m., Stronach at 6:40 p.m. and Manistee at 7:25 p.m.

The Stronach Township Fire Department is planning a special reception for the train from 5 to 9 p.m. at Stronach Township Hall where contributions for Toys for Tots/Gifts for Teens will be accepted and there will also be cookie and coloring contests, special guests, fireworks, entertainment and refreshments.

Further information on the Stronach reception is available by calling (231) 510-3939.

In Manistee, the Boyer Agency at 258 River St. will host a welcoming party with hot chocolate and other refreshments from 6 to 8 p.m.

Further information about the Santa Express is available by calling Marquette Rail at (231) 845-9000. Marquette Rail is a Rail America property based in Ludington serving Western Michigan from Grand Rapids to Manistee.

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Posted by Dave Yarnell

Dave was formerly the News Advocate features writer and retired in November 2013.

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