Alaska Railroad Hosts Fairbanks Family Fun Train

All aboard the Alaska Railroad’s Aurora Winter Train. Erin Kirkland/AKontheGO

The Alaska Railroad has been in operation for nearly 100 years, serving residents and visitors with service between Seward and Fairbanks. Shipping goods and people has always been their number one priority, but the allure of trains pulls hard on youngsters, and AKRR has responded. Their newest special event train chugs away from the Fairbanks depot on September 28. 

With a special eye toward families, the Alaska Railroad often rolls a train into service on a special weekend. There’s the Holiday Train. The Easter Train. A Valentine Train. And now, just for our friends in the Interior, a train just for them. The Fairbanks Family Fun Train chugs away from the station on Friday, September 28 with two departures designed to bring a little fall festivity to the Golden Heart City. 

“For years Golden Heart City residents have requested local special event trains, and we’re excited to provide another new option – a special train specifically for Fairbanks families,” said Dale Wade, Alaska Railroad vice president of marketing and customer service. “Our newest special event train, which features onboard entertainment, crafts and games, coincides with a local school holiday, making it the perfect family outing.”

And how. 

Curious about cost for the Fairbanks Family Fun Train? Here’s a screenshot for one adult-one child for the 2018 event. Erin Kirkland/AKontheGO

Autumn can be a funky time around the Interior; summer attractions have ended or are winding down after a busy season; weather can be a bit bi-polar (see what I did there?); and the frenetic pace of normal family life has picked up with school and fall sports back in session. 

Fairbanks families have long wanted an event just for them, and we’re pretty excited that the railroad has responded in such a positive way. AKontheGO publisher Erin Kirkland will be on hand for the morning train, so be sure to follow the Instagram and Facebook feeds for real-time updates for what is sure to be a very exciting day. 

Interested in this fun train event? Make reservations online, or call 1-800-544-0552. 

Other Alaska Railroad News

Additionally, the Alaska Railroad has turned an eye to families in other ways, as well, specifically with an expanded service schedule for fall and winter. Typically, after the end of September, the Denali Star train becomes the Aurora Winter Train and drastically decreases to a north-on-Saturday-south-on-Sunday schedule, not so convenient for those of us wanting a round-trip experience somewhere along the route (Anchorage-Wasilla-Talkeetna-Hurricane-Healy-Nenana-Fairbanks). But that has changed, thanks to a very positive response after an experimental season of select mid-week departures in December, January, February, and March. 

All aboard for late winter fun with the Alaska Railroad! Image courtesy AKRR

Check out these options: 

Anchorage-Talkeetna: This actually can be a fun one-night trip to our favorite little town in Alaska. Hop on board in Anchorage, disembark by lunchtime in Talkeetna, and spend time exploring, skiing, fat biking, or baking pies. Stay overnight at the Talkeetna Roadhouse and savor breakfast and more outdoor fun before departing in late afternoon. 

Anchorage-Healy: Want to go farther? Stay on board until you arrive in Healy, the winter stop for all things Denali National Park. Enjoy the park with few guests and a wide expanse of winter at your fingertips and toes; ski, visit the working sled dog kennel, or snuggle up before a fireplace at Denali Dome Home. 

Anchorage-Fairbanks: It’s a long way, to be sure, but why not pack a bag full of kid-friendly amusements and ride the rails 12 hours to Fairbanks and fly home? The Alaska Railroad has several ride-fly special packages that include some fun in town before you depart for Anchorage. This also works in reverse, by the way. 

Whatever you choose, be sure to sit back, relax, and enjoy a completely different scenescape from the windows; moose, Denali herself, frosty trees, and an Alaska many people miss. You’ll be glad you went. 

The Aurora Winter Train is a spectacular ride for visitors of any age. Erin Kirkland/AKontheGO


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