Where to Experience the Magic of the Polar Express in Champaign-Urbana while you’re missing the Polar Express Experience in Monticello
Do you have a Polar Express fan in your life that will be missing out on the Polar Express train due to COVID-19 this year? The Monticello Railway Museum Polar Express train may not be happening in 2020, but Champaign-Urbana families have other options for recreating this experience outside of the train itself.
If you’re still looking for ways to experience the magic of Polar Express in 2020, don’t worry. There are plenty of other ways to enjoy the movie’s magic in the Champaign-Urbana area this holiday season, some more budget-friendly than others.
- Drive in at Harvest Moon. On December 4 and 5, Harvest Moon Twin Drive-In Theatre will host “Hot Chocolate and Holiday Movies” featuring “The Polar Express” on screen 2. Santa will be there for socially distanced visits and you can drive through its “Lighted Lane” on your way in. Get your tickets in advance to secure a spot!
- Throw your own Polar Express party at home.
- Check out the movie and/or book from the library, or buy them (if you have Amazon Prime, the DVD was available as low as $6.89* and the hardcover book was selling for $7.89 when we last checked).
- You can buy a photo backdrop*, a Polar Express Cookie Kit* (sort of like a gingerbread house), or a wooden train set* (think Thomas style).
- The Polar Express website has its own printable party kit, and there are also plenty of ideas on Pinterest.
- Take a road trip to enjoy a Polar Express train (kind of) near you.
- OK, so it’s a lot further away, but there are still a few tickets to be had (when last we checked) at the Polar Express experience in St. Louis.
- This year the trains will remain stationary for Believe: The Polar Express Experience.
- Timed admission tickets will be a thing, too, just like at museums and many zoos all throughout our area these days.
- See the Polar Express on the big screen.
- This year, it seems like the closest movie theater to be showing the Polar Express as of right now is the Bloomington Cinema & IMAX in Bloomington.
- There’s a launch date of December 4, 2020 for this year’s showings. Get your tickets early!
- Tune in to a special Polar Express storytime.
- The Barnes and Noble special Storytime Pajama Party is an annual favorite, but we just don’t know if that’ll be happening this year (no word yet).
- However, we’re anxiously awaiting the area libraries as they post their story times for the holidays and our fingers are crossed that the popular story will be part of at least one of them this year!
- There are multiple versions on YouTube, including this one read by Liam Neeson.
Did we miss a Polar Express-themed event in Champaign-Urbana? Let us know or add it to our calendar.
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