It’s almost here—the Holiday Train Show opens tomorrow! Hear from Laura Busse Dolan, President of Applied Imagination, giving you a sneak peek into what’s new this year from their workshop, including Central Park’s iconic landscape and architecture and all-new train track layouts. It’s all presented in an immersive indoor winter wonderland.
Holiday Train Show
Join Laura Busse Dolan, owner of Applied Imagination, for a quick tour of the New York landmark replicas created by her company of artists that most speak to her, from the familiar silhouette of St. Patrick’s Cathedral to the Electric Tower of Luna Park. They’re all here on view at NYBG through January 21 as the Holiday Train Show continues into the new year—don’t miss it!
Saint Patrick's Cathedral
One of the earliest examples of our more elaborate botanical models, this structure took three different artists to complete, and uses over 60 different plant parts in its detail. The front rose window alone contains Siberian iris seed pods, grapevine, poppy seeds, eucalyptus pods, and pine cone scales.
On Sunday, November 20, NYBG held its annual Community Holiday Open House and Menorah and Tree lighting ceremony. Aaron Bouska, NYBG’s Vice President for Government & Community Relations at NYBG, welcomed the audience, which included many members of the Bronx community as well as several elected officials with their families.
This season’s Holiday Train Show® is on view through January 18, but Evergreen Express continues to provide seasonal family fun in the Everett Children’s Adventure Garden through January 24. Kids pass through station stops during their visit, each featuring a unique and educational activity designed to explore the world of evergreens.
In the cozy Discovery Center Depot, children make their own herbarium pressings of a conifer specimen and craft a miniature scented sachet to take home. The Adventure Garden is full of trails that guide children through the trees and shrubs of winter.
There is an outdoor puppet theater available for children, and on weekends and school holidays, kids can create a train puppet inspired by master puppeteer Ralph Lee and join a musical marching parade.
Evergreen Express takes place Tuesdays through Sundays in the Adventure Garden, from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. on weekdays and Sundays, and from 1:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Saturday.
All Aboard with Thomas & Friends™ mini-performances continue through January 24 as well, so plan a family excursion to NYBG in the next couple of weeks for winter fun!
The Holiday Train Show in the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory – Photo by Ivo M. Vermeulen
Nearly a half-mile of track winds its way through the Haupt Conservatory come November, when a twinkling 24-year tradition of model trains and cityscapes in miniature returns to NYBG for another winter season. The Holiday Train Show has fast become New York City’s most beloved holiday pastime, a moment when children, parents, and train lovers alike flock to the Garden for a stroll through the nostalgic little world that we’ve dreamed up. And this year, we’re doing it bigger than ever.
Beginning November 21, the show brings along 3,000 square feet of additional exhibition space, making plenty of room for more trains, tracks, and bridges. Look for locomotives chugging along overhead and zipping between 150 landmarks crafted from bark, leaves, and other plant parts; among them, our brand-new Conservatory replica, reimagined just last year, is joined in 2015 by a jaw-dropping model of the New York Public Library building.
Don’t expect to go hungry while you’re here, either. Alongside our year-round offerings, like the casual dining of the Pine Tree Café and the full-service experience of the Hudson Garden Grill, stop for family-friendly seasonal treats from our new Gingerbread Café. And if you’re looking to warm up amid the snow flurries, head to the new Frosty’s Schnapps Haus in the Visitor Center, where fresh-made pretzels and hot spiked drinks are sure to hit the spot before you set off to explore our winter wonderland.
The popular Bar Car Nights at The New York Botanical Garden are back, providing nighttime opportunities for adults to enjoy a special viewing of the Holiday Train Show®! Experience a true winter wonderland at the Garden while sipping a complimentary cocktail and indulging in roasted chestnuts and spiked hot cocoa.
This year there are twice as many opportunities to walk arm-in-arm along Perennial Garden Way and join friends under the twinkling lights of the Conservatory. Bar Car Nights are providing the perfect Friday and Saturday winter escape on November 21 and 22; December 5, 6, 19 and 20; and January 2, 3, 9, and 10 from 7 to 10 p.m.
Like all good things, even the Holiday Train Show must come to an end, and this Sunday is your last chance to see this wonderful family exhibition until November comes around again. But that doesn’t mean the train fun is done! All Aboard with Thomas & Friends continues its run in the Ross Hall for several more weeks.
In addition, we have a few tours planned—including the always popular Saturday Bird Walk—to help you stretch your legs after hibernating during this week’s cold snap. And if your little ones have a serious case of cabin fever, bring them along for the last weekend of holiday family fun in the Everett Children’s Adventure Garden!
So what’s next on our agenda? Starting January 18, take a trip to the tropics without leaving New York! That’s right, Tropical Paradise returns, along with the very popular Tropical Paradise Photography Contest. So grab your dusty old SLR and brush up on your techniques while you take in the last weekend of everyone’s favorite holiday event!
The clock is running down on this year’s Holiday Train Show, meaning there are only a handful of opportunities left for you to experience this most beloved of seasonal traditions! Our trains have made more runs than we can count, zipping about the rails that wind through dozens of iconic New York landmarks, and the season’s cocktail evenings and family events have been a delight to host. But “all good things,” and so forth. This Sunday, January 12, is your very last chance to stroll under the twinkling lights of the Conservatory before we switch gears for 2014!
That’s not to say we’re entirely done with the holidays at the Garden, though. All Aboard with Thomas & Friends is only just getting started, with fun-filled, sing-along performances scheduled through January 26. But tickets go fast! If you’re planning to join us with your kids for an adventure alongside that most famous of tank engines, make a point of registering early to ensure you get the time and date that you want.
And if you’re looking for a little time spent admiring the outdoors, winter is a better time to wander the Garden’s trails and collections than you’d think. Barren branches and the serene quiet of the Forest define winter’s charm—and it’s even better when the trees are dusted with snow. Now is also the ideal time to observe the punchy colors of winter berries painting the Garden, or the deep spectrum of greens showcased in our historic conifer collections.
What’s better than the Holiday Train Show? How about when we combine the Holiday Train Show with All Aboard with Thomas & Friends! That’s right, starting on New Year’s Day your train-crazy little ones can get a double dose of all things train in one single day (and if you take Metro-North Rail Road to Botanical Garden Station, that’s a triple dose of all things train!).
Running through January 26, your kids can join Thomas and Driver Sam on a new fun-filled, sing-along, mini performance adventure by helping them decorate the station in time for the big Sodor surprise party before the guest of honor arrives! At the end, be sure to have your camera ready for an exciting photo op with the stars of the show!