The Polar Express at Union Station 2020

This year things have been switched up a bit but the big news is that The Polar Express is back at Union Station in downtown St. Louis! Grab your masks and grab your kiddos and head downtown for a unique holiday experience unlike any other in St. Louis!

Even in the time of Coronavirus, an important St. Louis holiday tradition will continue to bring joy to families. The Polar Express returns to St. Louis Union Station for the 2020 season with some changes to allow for appropriate social distancing and safety.

The popular family event has been recreated as Believe! THE POLAR EXPRESS Experience for 2020. The beautifully decorated trains will remain stationary under the Union Station train shed this year for a walk-through event. Guests will interact with the The Polar Express characters and Santa Claus in whimsically decorated tents and on the Station’s Purina Performance Plaza.

Believe! THE POLAR EXPRESS Experience is the magical story of a boy’s search for the real meaning of Christmas, based on the beloved children’s book and hit film.

The event begins November 20 and continues through December 30, 2020. 
After beginning their journey, guests will feel the approach of a mysterious train and see the Conductor inviting them to board THE POLAR EXPRESS™. Set to the motion picture soundtrack, non-moving train tours will transport passengers into the magic of the beloved holiday classic.
During the experience, hot chocolate and cookies will be served by dancing and singing chefs and guests will read along with the children’s book,The Polar Express, by Chris Van Allsburg. Santa and his elves will visit with children and give them the first gift of Christmas, a silver bell.
Characters and helpers will wear masks and masks will be required for all guests over the age of nine per St. Louis City Health Department guidelines. 

Timed tickets will be available from 1 to 9 p.m., Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays with the last ticket sold at 8 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, the event will be open from 3 p.m. until 9 p.m. with the last ticket sold at 8 p.m. Timed tickets will allow for appropriate attendance sizes and social distancing during the event. Ticket prices range from $27 to $45.

More information about dates, fares and event times is available by calling 314-942-6942, or by visiting www.STLPolarExpressRide.com. Families are encouraged to wear their holiday pajamas for the experience. 

THE ST. LOUIS WHEEL & MORE
Admission to Believe! THE POLAR EXPRESS Experience can be combined with tickets to ride the St. Louis Wheel or to explore the St. Louis Aquarium at Union Station. The 200-foot-tall observation wheel will be open daily from 10 a.m. until 10 p.m. for views of the glittering downtown holiday lights. Additional activities on site include the St. Louis Aquarium, open daily from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. with extended hours until 8 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and during holiday breaks. The St. Louis Carousel, an 18-hole mini-golf course at the Wheel plaza and the St. Louis Ropes Course and A-Maze-Ing Discoveries Mirror Maze inside Union Station also are open during the event.

St. Louis Union Station will continue its popular holiday fire and light show set to Christmas music on the train shed lake during the season. THE POLAR EXPRESS™ movie will be shown every night during the season.

Guests can get a head start on their holiday shopping at The Winter Market, which offers a holiday shopping experience inside the event space. Carnival games, strolling entertainers and holiday lights add to the festive atmosphere.

ROOM PACKAGES AT THE ST. LOUIS UNION STATION HOTEL
Guests can save 20 percent on their Believe! THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Experience tickets when they purchase a hotel package at the St. Louis Union Station Hotel, a Curio Collection by Hilton. The hotel package includes tickets to Believe! THE POLAR EXPRESS Experience and deluxe accommodations or an exclusive holiday-decorated suite with turn-down service for the complete seasonal experience.

Book a hotel stay here: 
https://www.stlthepolarexpressride.com/hotel-packages

NEW THIS YEAR: PANCAKES WITH SANTA
Select Saturdays and Sundays in December, families can enjoy a special Pancakes with Santa breakfast in Union Station’s Grand Hall. Pancakes topped with strawberries and fun whipped cream Santa faces are served with bacon and milk for the kids or coffee for the grownups. Seatings are available at 9, 9:45, 10:30 and 10:45 a.m. on December 5 & 6, 12 & 13, and 19 & 20, 2020. Santa will visit with every child during the event. Tables will be placed at appropriate social distances and only one group will be seated at a table. Masks are required per City of St. Louis Health Department requirements.

Tickets are available at:
https://www.stlthepolarexpressride.com/pancakes-with-santa

There is so much to do this year at Union Station. It is worth a trip to visit and see what all the excitement is about. Our little family of four felt very comfortable wearing our masks, walking around, and enjoying everything Union Station has to offer. Just remember the three W’s. Wear your mask, Wait 6 feet apart, and Wash your hands!

Gadgets And Gizmos For Your Christmas List

Christmas is almost here once again and for many of us this year it feels like the last time life was normal was Christmas last year! 

If you are looking to start planning for your family Christmas early this year, you have likely already looked at some gadgets and gizmos to buy for yourself and your loved ones. Today we want to share some of the fun items you can buy for the family as a whole and as gifts for your children and partner. There are so many fun pieces of technology out there and today we are going to take a look at some of the things you could invest in this Christmas. 

A New TV 

Rather than buying some smaller gadgets for different members of your family it might be a better idea for but something that everyone can benefit from. A TV is a staple in any modern home and you should invest in one which has great resolution, a big screen, and will last for years to come. Buying the family a new TV for Christmas might not seem like the most exciting of things but you’ll be able to watch all of your festive favourites on a huge screen this winter! 

A PS5 

The PS5 is the newest of Sony’s Playstations to arrive on the market and already there are some amazing games available for it. From Assassins Creed Valhalla to FIFA 21 and a revamped GTA V – there are tons of games available on this console to keep everyone in the family occupied for hours and hours. This could be a great gift for your child this festive season or even as a treat for yourself after a tough year. 

A Tablet 

Every man and his dog has a tablet these days, and these small gadgets have become a useful addition to your technological arsenal at home. There are plenty of brilliant tablets under 200 if you don’t want to fork out on an iPad and you’ll have hours of fun watching films and tv, playing games, and even doing work all in one place. Tablets are a useful tool and can be a great gift to give someone you care about this Christmas. 

Phillips Hue light strips 

If you are looking for something which will add an air of magic and wonder to your living room setup – Phillips hue lights are the way to go. You can opt to buy bulbs for your lights and lamps which will turn on and off at the tap of an app – or perhaps you want to use a light strip to enhance your cinema experience. Phillips hue light strips can be fitted to the top of your tv, and they will be able to read and translate what is on the screen and emit light of the same colour as you watch. It will make all of those superhero flicks even more impressive and immerse you in their world. 

An Instant Pot 

An instant pot is the perfect gift for the cook in your life and it offers many functions in one small device. From slow cooking to sauté and rice cooking, it’s the ideal one pit gadget for anyone who loves to cook! 

Cyber Security Games!

Sometimes playing a fun game can be the best educational experience you can find. This is why people from all over the world have created a variety of games that you can play to enhance your cyber security knowledge. Check out this small list of games and see if you can become a cyber security master!

Targeted Attack: The Game   

Become the CIO of Fugle Inc. to determine what to do to protect sensitive company information in light of potential security issues. You’ll start with a video intro and then launch into the game with your chosen strategy defining the path it takes. Spend your budget coins wisely as you take on this challenge!

Cybersecurity Lab

As the CTO of a start-up social networking company (options include the cleverly named Einstagram, SnapCat, WattsAmp, and Phasebook), you’ll be in charge of cybersecurity during increasingly sophisticated attacks. Bolster your defenses to fend off foes in varying challenges that involve password and code cracking, and more.

Game of Threats

PwC’s Game of Threats simulates a cyber-attack to help executives understand the key decisions that need to be made in short order. You can participate both as an attacker and as a defender as precious seconds tick by and your company’s valuable information assets are on the line.

Hot Spot

Time is running out and in this simulation of habitual violations in a work environment the user is challenged to identify and eliminate them before time runs out. The game is a simplified simulation of an office with several security oversights scattered around the environment. Discover them if you are capable and see if you are prepared to change the habits that allow the avenge of insecurity in the company

Security Feud

Security Feud is a Free, interactive Family Feud Style Game(PPT). Seven rounds. Easy to schedule, recurring fun game. Do you ever feel like large-scale security awareness solutions are a little unwieldy?! Cue Security Feud: a brand-new, FREE resource for those looking to dip their toes into security awareness gamification! Security Feud is a fun, manageable step toward immersive learning, available now for October Cyber Security month. We crowdsourced 19 cyber security-themed questions to create this awesome resource just for you!

Craft a Phish

Do you want to know your level of knowledge about common phishing traps on the internet? So you have to click on this quiz game from Living Security about phishing with real screens of current ongoing threats on the internet that often deceive us about what is real and what is someone trying to breach your security.

Halloween at Union Station!

All Aboard! The Union Station Halloween Experience brings family fun to the fall season in St. Louis, October 9 – 31.

Created for children 12 and under and their families, the Union Station Halloween Experience is a themed walking journey through the historic railroad terminal’s stationary rail cars. Each train car features a spooky theme including pirates, witches, dark creatures and a candy wonderland. 
Guests can purchase tickets and start their Halloween journey inside a huge tent filled with a not-so-scary maze, a series of boo-rific decorated rooms and a big barnyard where guests 12 and under receive a free pumpkin.
Onboard the rail cars, characters read a story with clues and interactive elements to solve the Riddle of the Werewolf. Kids get a special treat at the end of the journey.

The Union Station Halloween Experience is open daily, October 9 – 31 from 1 to 9 p.m. with the last ticket sold at 8 p.m.

My two kiddos LOVED the Halloween Experience at Union Station. It was just the perfect amount of scary for them. My son is six and he was holding my hand so tight while walking through the spooky maze. My daughter is ten and wasn’t as scared but just loved how everything was setup.

With a magic show, a balloon artist, and much more, the first part of the Halloween Experience was already worth checking out. The second part, which consists of going through several train cars that are decorated with some crazy Halloween flair was just as fun. Listening to the story and putting together the clues provided a unique experience that kids and adults should really enjoy.

Ticket options allow guests to incorporate package deals with Union Station’s other attractions, adding a visit to the St. Louis Aquarium and the 200-foot-tall St. Louis Wheel at a reduced price.

Timed tickets for the Union Station Halloween Experience are $20 per person and may be purchased on site or online at: https://www.stlouisunionstation.com/halloween-train-ticketing.

With normal Halloween plans changed due to COVID-19, the new event has been created with guest safety in mind. Just 12 people will be admitted to each train car at a time to allow for appropriate social distancing. Masks are required and family groups will be seated separately. The train cars and tent areas will be sanitized throughout the day according to Union Station’s strict safety protocols.


STAY AND PLAY
Hotel room packages with Halloween Experience tickets start at $150/night for families that want to continue the Halloween fun with an overnight stay at the St. Louis Union Station Hotel after the event.
Parking for the event is $5 per car.

ACTIVITIES ON THE PLAZA
A fall festival market tent will house shopping and activities on the Purina Performance Plaza. Halloween items will be for sale, including decorating kits for pumpkins distributed during the event. 

Fun festival-style food and drinks will be available on the Plaza and Soda Fountain, Union Station’s popular retro diner, is adding Halloween Freak Shakes to the menu.


HALLOWEEN ON THE WHEEL
Scan the skies for witches and ghosts from the top of the St. Louis Wheel. The 200-foot-tall observation wheel at Union Station will be lighted in Halloween color themes during the event and a scary soundtrack will play on the Plaza. Hourly fire and light shows will entertain families on the Union Station lake. 


UNDERWATER SCARES
The St. Louis Aquarium at Union Station gets in on the Halloween fun with underwater pumpkin carving. The Aquarium’s talented divers will create Jack o’ Lantern treats for the fishy residents of Shark Canyon. Carving demonstrations will take place on Saturdays and Sundays during dive shows at 11 a.m. and 1:30 and 4 p.m.

The Union Station Halloween Experience is located under the historic train shed at 201 S. 18th Street, St. Louis, MO 63013.