Pleasanton Weekly

Arts & Entertainment - November 25, 2011

Outings to make the season bright

Yesteryear fun makes for a merry Christmas

Enjoy a Victorian Yuletide at Ravenswood Historic Site where the main house and cottage are decorated to the hilt for the holidays. The yuletide celebration takes place from noon-4 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 11, with St. Nicholas, music, entertainment and children's crafts, all for free. Sweets and hot beverages will be available.

The historic site will be decorated with holiday trees and flowers. Costumed volunteers and docents will greet guests, offering tours of the museum cottage house. The old Tank House Gift Shop behind the cottage is featuring special items and handmade crafts.

'Tis also the season to climb aboard the historic Niles Canyon Railway run by the Pacific Locomotive Association for the 2011 Train of Lights running some evenings through Dec. 29.

"Bring large doses of good cheer and any protective clothing you may need against the weather," said the organizers. "While we don't often have rain, it is frequently cold. A small flashlight may be useful to help you move safely between your vehicle and the train."

Sunol trains depart at 7:15 p.m.; trains depart from Niles at 4:15 p.m., and the trip takes a little over an hour.

Seats are $25 for everyone over the age of 3. Bargain trains for $15 will run on Wednesdays, Dec. 7 and 14.

The annual Train of Lights is the largest fundraiser for the Pacific Locomotive Association, which restores historic boxcars for the public to enjoy. Those who work on the trains are all volunteers.

It is also possible to charter the caboose or an entire Train of Lights train. Contact the ticket agent at 510-996-8420.

--Dolores Fox Ciardelli

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