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Monday, November 23, 2015

Chicago 2015 CTA Holiday Train & Bus info, Q & A, accessibility

2015 CTA Holiday Train

it’s that time of year to get into the holiday spirit and catch a ride on the Sprint CTA Holiday Train! Santa and his elves will ride the train passing out candy canes and season's greetings.
The spectacular train is an amazing sight - during the daytime and at night. The outside of the six-car train is adorned with holiday seasonal images. Thousands of twinkling lights outline the shape of the train and windows, with even more lights running across the tops of the cars.
Interiors of the cars are decked out with thousands of multi-colored lights, red bows, garland, and red and green overhead lighting. The hand poles are wrapped to look like candy canes.
As the train pulls into each station, Santa waves to the boarding passengers from his sleigh on an open-air flatcar carrying his reindeer and decorated holiday trees.
Happy Holidays from the CTA - 2014 Holiday Video
Charity food delivery
The CTA also continues a more-than-20-year agency tradition of supporting Chicago communities. Every year, CTA employees embrace the spirit of the holidays and donate time and money to purchase groceries and assemble food baskets that are distributed to community organizations across the city.We'll donate approximately 300 food baskets to local community organizations.
Each food basket contains all the ingredients for a complete meal including a canned ham, potatoes, mixed vegetables, muffin mix, macaroni and cheese, fruit cocktail, green beans, corn and dessert. The Holiday Train delivers the food baskets on three separate days over the holiday season.
The Sprint CTA Holiday Train will travel all 'L' lines in November and December as part of regular rail service. Normal CTA fares apply.
The train generally operates from about 1pm to 8pm on weekends and 3pm to 7pm on select weekdays (schedules for each rail line will vary), and will make stops at all stations along the respective routes.
2015 Detailed Sprint CTA Holiday Train Schedule
Click the dates below to see full details. 

(Detailed schedules are posted as they become available. Unlinked dates indicate a schedule for that date has not yet been published.)
Red Line11/21 - Sat
Green Line11/27 - Fri
photo dayGreen Line11/28 - Sat
Green Line12/1 - Tue
Orange Line Brown Line12/2 - Wed
Orange Line Brown Line12/3 - Thu
Orange Line Brown Line12/4 - Fri
photo dayOrange Line Brown Line12/5 - Sat
Pink Line12/8 - Tue
Pink Line12/9 - Wed
Blue Line12/10 - Thu
Blue Line12/11 - Fri
photo dayBlue Line (+ photo-only stop on Pink Line)12/12 - Sat
Red Line12/15 - Tue
Purple Line12/16 - Wed
Red Line12/17 - Thu
Purple Line12/18 - Fri
photo dayRed Line & Purple Line12/19 - Sat
Purple Line12/22 - Tue
Yellow Line12/23 - Wed
photo day = Photos with Santa
Travel Tips
To ensure everyone has an opportunity to see and take part in this annual tradition, here are a few suggested tips to make the most of your Sprint CTA Holiday Train and Bus experience:
  • Travel light: with many families making the train a part of their holiday traditions, small collapsible strollers are encouraged so that you and others have an opportunity to board the train.
  • Boarding: the train will become more crowded as it travels down the rail line; therefore, we recommend customers consider the following:
    • Board at a station close to the beginning of the route. Unlike other in-service trains, many people who board the train often stay on board until it reaches the terminal—and will take it back home if the train is scheduled to make a return trip.
    • Rail cars toward the front or back of the train will be less crowded compared to those immediately adjacent to Santa’s sleigh.
  • Taking photos: if you are planning to ride the train and take photos from a station platform, don’t miss your opportunity to board the train! Board the train first and then plan to take photos of Santa or the train when exiting at your destination. The Spr Holiday Train is an in-service train and has to maintain a service schedule; therefore it cannot dwell at stations for long periods of time.

Accessibility: CTA Trains and Buses are accessible for People with Disabilities. Please refer to CTA on availability of CTA Train Stations being accessible [click here].

Priority Seating is intended for people with disabilities of all ages, if there are carts, baby strollers,luggage, etc. in Priority Seating area, ask CTA personnel to make announcement of a Priority Seat is needed.
For Full Accessibility Information, [click here]

2015 CTA Holiday Bus

Day or night, the commutes of thousands will be made brighter when they see the Sprint CTA Holiday Bus -- a 60-foot bus bejeweled inside and out with hundreds of lights and holiday decorations -- as it travels throughout Chicago’s neighborhoods this holiday season! The bus was created by CTA bus personnel as a way to say “thank you” to customers and bring added cheer this holiday season.
The exterior wrap features “Ralphie the Reindeer” leading the way with his crimson nose aglow and Santa’s sleigh in tow. Strings of lights outline the bus and its windows, while Ralphie is brought to life with 3-D antlers atop the bus and a ruby light affixed to the front of the bus.  
The soft glow of multi-colored lights adds a warm touch to the interior of the bus as well as holiday-themed seating, candy-cane striping, artwork created by students from Wadsworth Elementary and elves on board handing out candy canes to all the good boys and girls.
In the very back of the bus is Santa’s den, which serves as the perfect setting for the scheduled photo sessions with Santa -- featuring a cozy fireplace, Santa’s armchair flanked with toy soldiers, decorated trees and oversized presents.


The Sprint CTA Holiday Bus will travel nine CTA bus routes throughout the city between December 2-23 as part of regular service. Normal CTA fares apply.
The bus will generally operate from late morning through early evening on select weekdays and weekends (schedules for each route will vary), and will serve all posted stops along the respective routes.

2015 Sprint CTA Holiday Bus Schedule
NOTE: schedule times are approximate and subject to change.
Departure and Photo Session Times
12/2 – Wed*
#29 State
Departs 95th/Dan Ryan at 12:30pm
Photos @ Navy Pier
(approx. 5:20pm – 6pm)
12/3 - Thu
#29 State
Departs 95th/Dan Ryan at 12:30pm
12/4 – Fri*
#62 Archer
Departs State/Kinzie at 12:30pm
Photos at Midway
(approx. 6:30pm – 7:30pm)
12/5 – Sat
#62 Archer
Departs Midway at 12:45pm
12/6 – Sun*
#3 King Drive
Departs Ontario/Fairbanks at 1pm
Photos @ Chicago State University
(approx. 6:10pm –7 pm)
12/9 – Wed
#3 King Drive
Departs from CSU/95th at 12:30pm
12/10 – Thu*
#12 Roosevelt
Departs Central/Harrison at 1pm
Photos @ Central/Harrison
(approx. 4pm – 4:45pm)
12/11 – Fri
#12 Roosevelt
Departs Roosevelt/Kedzie at 1:30pm
12/12 – Sat*
#66 Chicago
Departs Chicago/Pulaski at 11:40am
Photos @Navy Pier
(approx. 4pm 
– 5pm)
12/16 – Wed
#66 Chicago
Departs Chicago/Pulaski at 11:40am
12/17 – Thu*
#56 Milwaukee
Departs Madison/Wabash at 1pm
Photos @ Jefferson Park Terminal
(approx. 5:30pm – 6:30pm)
12/18 – Fri
#56 Milwaukee
Departs Jefferson Park Terminal at 12:45pm
12/19 – Sat*
#22 Clark
Departs Howard Terminal at 12:45pm
Photos @ Howard Bus Terminal
(approx. 6:30pm –7:30pm)
12/20 – Sun*
#97 Skokie
Departs Howard Terminal at 11:30am (to Old Orchard)
Photos @ Old Orchard Mall
(approx. 12:30pm –1:30pm)
#22 Clark
Departs Howard Terminal at 2:30pm
12/23 – Wed*
#49 Western
Departs 79th/Western at 12:30pm
Photos @ 79th/Western
(approx. 4:30pm – 5:30pm)
*Indicates scheduled date for photos with Santa
# The information posted is as posted by CTA, and other sources.

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