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Ho Ho Ho! Ride a Train and cut down a tree!

Yes, it’s not green and politically correct but if you are looking to create memories with your kid for the holidays, this is a thing to do.  

writings of Judy Jean Kwon aka YoMamaRice


Fillmore and Western Railway offers a special Christmas train ride with a live Santa Clause who will greet and give you an opportunity to take a photo with him during the 25 minute train ride to a Xmas tree farm. 

Yes, the day will cost more than going to “Home Depot” and getting a tree that is already cut down for you but no amount of money can buy a memory building experience like riding an old and original Southern Pacific Railroad trains! with Santa! and your kids!!!

I believe this is a passion of one man to keep the trains alive. The trains were about to be destroyed but he rescued them for preservation and for the rest of us to enjoy. And by going on the train rides, you are helping our next generations to see what people used to ride, back in the days before electric vehicles. 

Fillmore and Western Railway is in Fillmore in Ventura County. This 25 minute train ride is soothing to your soul as you ride the gentle rhythm of an old machine chugging along the tracks where you can enjoy the view of Ventura and it’s farms while screaming at your kids to behave and sit still. 

On your train ride, Santa will come visit you and your kids. If you are lucky, you might get a nice Santa but one year I got a Santa reminiscent of Dan Aykroyd in “Trading Places”, which was fine by me.


And if Santa doesn’t help calm your kids down, you could go to the back of the train where there is open air and a concession stand with alcoholic beverages!

Once the train stops, hopefully your belly nice and warm from a glass or two of wine,  your kids could run amok looking for a tree to cut down. Oops. Never mind. It looks like someone ruined it for the rest of us. We used to be able to cut down our own tree but it looks like it’s pre-cut now. Thank you to the dummy that didn’t know what ‘sharp saw’ meant. 

So let’s start this over again. Your belly full and warm from wine... kids running amok... hey, it looks like they have a Loose Caboose Garden Center now. And you could  shop for Xmas presents and decorations for your pre-cut tree. Phhhew. No need to worry about kids getting a hold of a sharp saw!

They will wrap the tree up for you, throw it on the train and once you get back to your original starting point where your car is, you could get a guy to help you tie it on your car. Or you could bring a burly man or woman with you. 

Make sure to get there on time! The train will not wait for you to be fashionable late!! Get there 20 minutes before so you have plenty of time, to grab your train ticket at the ticket office and to scream at your kids to stay close. Please, support our trains!!

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