Santa visits with kids during last year's Jingle Bell Express.

Santa visits with kids during last year's Jingle Bell Express.

Jingle Bell Express tickets go on sale Saturday

Back by popular demand, tickets for this year’s Jingle Bell Express will be going on sale this weekend,

Back by popular demand, tickets for this year’s Jingle Bell Express will be going on sale this weekend, a train ride where families get the opportunity to meet the one and only Santa Claus, while helping raise funds local pediatric care.

Tickets tend to go rapidly for the Jingle Bell Express, so parents and guardians interested in purchasing tickets are encouraged to the Crest Hotel this upcoming Saturday, November 26, where 150 tickets will be going on sale at 10 a.m. sharp.

“We generally sell out within 10 minutes,” organizer Dave Walker, who has been putting this event together for the past 15 years, warned.

The Jingle Bell Express rides will be taking place on Tuesday, December 6, this year with the first outing taking place at noon, and the second at two p.m. Santa Claus will be greeting people at the station before the train departs to the Watson Island area. While the train is traveling, Santa Claus will be making his rounds around the car, speaking to each child and their guardians. Additionally, while onboard child will receive a gift bag with an assortment of fun items, such as activity books.

For the last 15 years the Jingle Bell Express has been an outstanding source of pleasure for children in the community, not only for kids aboard the train, but also for children in need as money collected for the Jingle Bell Express is donated to the pediatric ward at the Prince Rupert Regional Hospital.

Walker estimates that around $1,400 was raised from last year’s Jingle Bell Express rides, with over $1,000 being raised each year since the event started.

The Jingle Bell Express is possible with the help of VIA Rail Canada, who donate the use of the train, with the engineers operating the train volunteering their time. Additionally, CN donates the use of the rails with Maher Terminals helping out with the timing of the rail use.