My Life Parenting

Another Day Out with Thomas

We first met up with Thomas, the cheeky blue engine, two years ago. We missed it last year because we spent the summer up in Wisconsin while we waited to move into our new house, but we went again this weekend. I don’t know if you know this, but carrying a big rock to meet Sir Topham Hatt? It’s a thing.

Meeting Sir Topham Hatt

Thomas travels around North America through the spring and summer, and the event is held near Chicago each year at the Illinois Railway Museum in Union, IL. It’s a cool place, with an impressive collection of “rolling stock” (locomotives and cars). Eleanor and August are still afraid of the biggest engines, but the smaller, friendlier ones are much less imposing.

Horse-Drawn Railroad Car
Old Railway Signs
Checking Out the Old Trains
IL Railway Museum

The kids got temporary tattoos, played with train tables, and climbed on a giant sand mound. Not sure how that last one was train-related, but they enjoyed it.

Thomas Activities
Sandy Sand

And of course, there was the obligatory Thomas train ride.

Thomas Ride

The kids waved at him and thanked him for the ride every time we saw him puff by. My goofy little cuties.

Rockin' Out!

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  • Laura
    August 18, 2014 at 1:52 pm

    Awwwww, how cute! I used to go there all the time when I was a kid (my dad was a real train nut). A little out of the way, but worth it every once in a while. :)

  • Katie
    August 18, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    We went there a few times as kids because my dad lived nearby.

    For some grown up fun, we go to their haunted train rides in the fall. A haunted house on a moving train is actually pretty fun and terrifying!

  • Peaches
    August 18, 2014 at 2:11 pm

    Look like fun! I can only *assume* you are familiar with the wonder of youtube sensation, Excited Train Guy. If not, he is amazering.

  • Christine @ Bluegrass Blogger
    August 18, 2014 at 2:23 pm

    I should’ve taken my son when Thomas came to Kentucky! I hope he is still interested in Thomas next year.

  • Allison T
    August 18, 2014 at 3:46 pm

    Some friends of mine recently moved to the Chicago area. I will have to share this event with them so they can be on the lookout for it next year. It looks like your family had a ton of fun!

    • Making it Lovely
      August 18, 2014 at 4:09 pm

      It will still be there next weekend, if that isn’t too soon for them.

  • iris
    August 18, 2014 at 3:48 pm

    I can’t think of Thomas the Tank Engine these days without the following compilation video:

  • Valerie
    August 18, 2014 at 6:13 pm

    Oh my son would flip! We have an actual train museum 20 minutes from Montreal, wich we go every year… by train of course! :) They have a tramway ride, lots of gigantic locomotive on display and toys of course. A dream place for any fanatics!

  • Sarah @ Sarah's Daybook
    August 18, 2014 at 6:44 pm

    Oh my goodness! Is that August?! He is huge! Almost as tall as little miss Eleanor!


  • Amy
    August 19, 2014 at 8:37 am

    For many years I was the one playing Sir Topham Hat at our railroad’s Day Out With Thomas. I’m probably in hundreds of vacation photos. :D This post brings back so many memories! I never quite knew why, but he’s a very popular guy with the kids.

  • judy
    August 19, 2014 at 3:24 pm

    OK The kids are just the right size now so you can tell them to Stop! Where does the time go? Mine are now Baby…. 50! in November…. Oldest 54!