All Aboard The Polar Express!
As friends and neighbors wave at each other across the room, and smiling and excited children dressed in their pajamas burst through the doors, the North Pole Express at the Rockwall Library gets underway. Theres not a real train in this version of the popular book, The Polar Express, written by Chris Van Allsburg, but the children dont seem to notice. They quickly grab their tickets from the ticket booth, write their names on a train and rush to get in line. As the conductor rings his bell and calls out for the children to board the next train, eyes light up with delight.
The train, led by one of Santas great helpers, takes them from their living room all the way to the North Pole, where they meet meet the Jolly Old Man himself. Children wait with anticipation to greet the Man in Red; as their turn arrives, they cautiously approach. Santa calls each child over to have to a seat and then with that jolly smile asks what it is they want for Christmas, and if theyve been good this year. Santa takes his time with every boy and girl, letting them know they are important and urges them to continue being good. Then, each child receives their first gift of Christmas — a bell, that (possibly) only those who believe can hear ringing.
The children then move on for some fun crafts, making perfect gifts for family and friends. Of course, what would a cold December night be without a cup of hot chocolate and a cookie? Yes, that was there too. While the children were enjoying their treats, they watched the movie, The Polar Express, as it played on a TV.
As eyes start to droop and yawns fill the air, parents begin gathering up their loved ones for the ride home. While they walk out into the chilly night, the children hold the bell up to their ears one more time to be sure the bell still rings, as it does for all who truly believe.
by Katy Standifer