Did you hear the train whistle this Christmas Eve?

With the wonderful white Christmas Michigan experienced this year, it is no wonder that the 'Polar Express' started right here in West Michigan! Wikipida.com varies that...

"The book is set partially in Grand Rapids, Michigan, the author's hometown, which inspired the Herpolsheimer's and Wurzburg's department stores. It was adapted as an Oscar-nominated motion-capture film in  2004 starring Tom Hanks and directed by Robert Zemeckis with Van Allsburg serving as an executive producer on the film."

The author of this beloved Christmas tale was born and raised in Grand Rapids Michigan. Chris Van Allsburg said that the idea for the book 'The Polar Express' was sparked when thought of a child hearing a train in the distance. Chris stated...

"He based the story on a mental image of a child wandering into the woods on a foggy night and wondering where a train was headed."

And believe it or not, the train that the movie is based around is real! At the premiere of the movie, Van Allsburg stated that Pere Marquette 1225, formerly owned by Michigan State University and now owned by the Steam Railroading Institute in Owosso, Michigan, was the inspiration for the storyline train.

Chris said when he was a kid he would play on the engine that was numbered 1225, which he claims to him 1225 meant 12/25, that's right Christmas. Now we can all see how the story falls into place.

In 2004 a cherished Christmas story that my family enjoyed every year in book form came to life as a movie. This year was no different from any other year, as we cuddled up and watched the timeless tale.

Hot Chocolate Please!