Saturday, October 6, 2012

Western Railway Museum Pumpkin Festival in Suisun

It has been several years since our most recent visit to the Western Railway Museum in Suisun, but it is a trip we remember very fondly each time, and it is on our list of pumpkin patches that we are strongly considering returning to this year.

The Western Railway Museum is open on weekends year round (except for major holidays), and some weekdays over the summer. They have restored electric trains and streetcars on display.

During their Pumpkin Festival, which runs weekends from Oct 13th thru the 28th this year, they also add a hay bale fort, tractor ride, music, and games. They also have pumpkins for sale of course, but I wouldn't consider the pumpkin selection to ever have been the strongest point for the Railway Museum's Pumpkin Festival on the times we've been. Even so, they have pumpkins available, and when we go this counts as our pumpkin patch visit for the year.

The hay fort and tractor rides are nothing amazing, but they are nice, and the kids love them. They always ask for a few more minutes in the fort, or another ride on the wagon, so these are winning features in their eyes.

For the grown-ups in our group, the highlight instead is usually the ride over to the play / pumpkin patch area on board one of the historic rail cars. I don't recall how long the ride takes. It is more than a few minutes, but not long enough to drag on. Maybe 15 to 20 minutes? You ride the train to the area with the fort and pumpkins, stay as long as you like there, and catch another train back to the museum when you are ready. Trains run every 30 minutes starting at 10:00 am.

The actual museum part, including the restored streetcars and rail trains was probably more of a hit with the adults in our group, again, but the kids did look around and seemed to really enjoy seeing the trains. They were just "done" sooner with that part of the visit.

The last time we visited, one of our favorite bands, The Hip Waders, was playing, so we spent extra time watching them. They often let the kids perform along with them onstage with toy instruments. I checked, and they will be at the Western Railway's Pumpkin Festival again this year on Oct 21st, 27th, and 28th starting at 11:00 am.

The admission cost for the Pumpkin Festival is slightly more than the regular Railway Resume admission cost. It is $12 for adults, and $9 for kids, $11 for seniors. You could easily, however, take a picnic lunch with you and make a whole day of it in the pumpkin patch / play area.

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