Monday, September 09, 2013

KCS kicks-off Holiday Express charitable fundraiser

Written by  William C. Vantuono, Editor-in-Chief
"Rudy" "Rudy" KCS
Kansas City Southern will be running its 13th annual Holiday Express train through 20 communities in six states on 24 dates this Christmas season between Nov. 29 and Dec. 22, and is now seeking donations to purchase gift cards that are donated to the Salvation Army at each scheduled stop. The gift cars are used to purchase warm clothing and other necessities for children in these communities. During the past 12 years, the Holiday Express has raised almost $1.2 million for this purpose.

IMG 8613“The Holiday Express was built on the tradition of the Santa Train, which ran on a segment of the network purchased by KCS in 1997,” KCS says. “In 2000, a group of warm-hearted KCS employees noticed that the Santa Train was the only Christmas some kids had, and that some kids did not even have essential items like coats, hats, and gloves. These employees were so touched that they committed to elevating the project. In 2001, volunteers transformed a retired freight train into the experience that communities throughout KCS’s U.S. service territory enjoy today.”

Led by KCS’s Southern Belle business train, the Holiday Express train includes a smiling tank car, “Rudy”; a flatcar carrying Santa’s sleigh, reindeer, and a miniature village; a ginger bread boxcar; a newly remodeled elves’ workshop; the reindeer stable; and a little red caboose. Each car is dressed in Christmas lights. At each scheduled stop, visitors can board the train, visit with Santa and his elves, and tour the inside of three cars of the festive six-car train.

Anyone interested in making a tax-deductible contribution to the 2013 Holiday Express fundraising campaign may do so online from the Holiday Express section of www.kcsouthern.com. Sponsorship benefits are available for contributions of $500 or more. The 2013 campaign will close on Oct. 31.