One of the things I absolutely love about Christmas time is that it can make you feel just like a kid all over again. The lights, the sounds and the anticipation of it all make December one very magical month. And no one captures that childlike wonder and excitement quite like the Wonderland Express at the Chicago Botanical Gardens.
It’s become somewhat of a tradition in our family to make a trip up to the Gardens in Glencoe, IL each December to ooh and ahh over the sights of this magnificent display of miniature train sets. The amazing masterminds of this exhibition have created a truly spectacular scenery of over 80 different Chicago landmarks through which the trains weave. Each landscape in this 10,000 square foot display is completely decked out in tiny holiday decorations like twinkling lights and Christmas trees. And with real snow falling from the ceiling, Christmas tunes playing in the background, and even an unexpected appearance by the red-suited king of the North Pole, you can’t help but get into the holiday spirit!
My kids love to race around from scene to scene to see which little buildings they can identify among all the landmarks. And this year, they even took their iTouches to record their favorites. But surprisingly, the highlight of the excursion for my son came when he had the honor of using the restroom at the exact same time as Santa himself. He was excited to learn that everybody really does poop — even old St. Nick! It doesn’t get much more magical than that!