Summer Fun With Thomas the Tank Engine

Singing Old McDonald four times in a row. Watching Elmo the Musical. Some things you just do for the kids.

They're two, they're four, they're six, they're eight...

They’re two, they’re four, they’re six, they’re eight…

Last weekend, we took our boys to Phillipsburg, New Jersey to take a ride with their favorite character, Thomas the Tank Engine. Each year, HIT Entertainment provides little engineers with the experience of riding the rails with Thomas. Children can take pictures with Thomas and Sir Toppam Hat (Sodor Railway’s Director), ride Thomas, watch live entertainment and shows, get creative with arts and crafts, and of course, purchase even more Thomas merchandise.

The boys were excited to see the “Day Out With Thomas” sign (they can’t read yet, but they know Thomas when they see him). They shouted his name as we drove to the parking lot. Once we got out of the car, they announced to everyone they passed that they were “going to Thomas.” It seemed everyone else was, too. Phillipsburg appears to be a train town–the restaurants and shops we passed all had “train” or “station in their names. Moms, dads, and kids were all on their way to have a “Day Out With Thomas.”

There was a buzz in the air as we picked up our tickets and got on line to board Thomas. Once we found our seats, the boys settled in for a 25-minute ride. For the entire 25 minutes, we listened to “Go, Thomas, Go.” For Twenty. Five. Minutes. Thomas took us forward, through some lovely trees and over water, and then…Thomas took us back. The boys received Junior Engineer certificates as a souvenir of the ride.

We ate, got some pictures with Thomas and the train and Sir Toppam Hat, and walked around. The boys have enough Thomas toys, sneakers, clothing, backpacks, rain boots, umbrellas, sheets, coloring books, and hats to last them well into junior high, so we didn’t buy anything else. The money we spent on tickets was worth it to see the enjoyment on our children’s faces.

If you’ve got a few extra dollars to spend, check out Day Out With Thomas when it comes to your area.


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Tiffani is the wife and mom behind MyMommyVents, co-creator of The Mommy Conference, and co-founder of the digital collective Sisterhued. Her writing and parenting tips have been seen on The Washington Post, Mommy Noire, Yahoo Parenting, and Fit Pregnancy.
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  1. August 13, 2014 / 2:43 pm

    We did this when my son was younger, and he LOVED it! I thought it was very well done. Glad you guys had fun!

    • tiffani
      August 13, 2014 / 4:08 pm

      Yes, the kids really enjoyed themselves. I think we parents were the most excited, though!

  2. August 13, 2014 / 6:58 pm

    How fun! I’ll add this on my list of things to do next summer. Sounds like the boys had a blast. How long is the drive from NYC? Thanks for linking up #rattleandroll

    • tiffani
      August 13, 2014 / 7:22 pm

      It wasn’t far at all! Maybe an hour and a half? I’m told there’s also a Polar Bear Express and a Dinosaur Train experience in the same location. Check out

  3. August 14, 2014 / 1:02 am

    I always wanted to do this with my boys when they were younger! They loved Thomas when they were toddlers. I’m sure your boys loved it 🙂

    • tiffani
      August 14, 2014 / 2:44 am

      Oh, they had a ball! They are huge Thomas fans…you should see our living room.

  4. August 14, 2014 / 2:09 am

    My son is only 2 but just started falling in love with train rides. Can’t wait to do this with him. Just need to find a train station near us. 😉

    • tiffani
      August 14, 2014 / 2:43 am

      My boys are 1 and 3. There were kids of all ages there. I’m sure your son will love it!

  5. September 17, 2014 / 12:21 pm

    I would love to do this with my little lady next year. Will have to look into it.

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