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NY Botanical Garden 2012 Holiday Train Show

The NY Botanical Garden blockbuster Holiday Train Show is back.


  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    NYBG Holiday Train Show

Photograph: Virginia Rollison

NYBG Holiday Train Show


The NY Botanical Garden Holiday Train Show, which transforms the tropical Enid A. Haupt Conservatory into a winter wonderland studded with New York landmarks and imagined countryside, has become as iconic as the Rock Center holiday tree itself. Its 21st anniversary iteration is better than ever, especially with the return of the exhibit revealing the arduous work that goes into the show each year. Here are six things to do at the NY Botanical Garden 2012 Holiday Train Show.

Count the trains
See if you and your crew can find all 14 large-scale model locomotives that chug along the 1,200 feet of track. While trainspotting, play a game of I Spy based on the display's more than 140 iconic NYC landmarks (like the Brooklyn Bridge and the old Yankee Stadium), all of which are embellished with such plant parts as bark, pine cones, moss and twigs.

Visit the Artist's Studio
The tented Artist's Studio lets families get a behind-the-scenes look at the dazzling craftsmanship behind the exhibit's production. New this year are two trains reimagined in plant materials. Like every other construction on view, they were built and decorated at Applied Imagination, the Kentucky-based studio of Paul Busse, the show's mastermind.

See the puppet show
The wildly talented puppeteer Ralph Lee and the Mettawee River Theatre Company bring the classic children's story The Little Engine That Could to life with a cast of steam engine puppets, each with its own quirky character. The 30-minute show (Nov 27–Dec 27, Tue–Thu, except Tue Dec 25; Mon Dec 17, 31. Times vary) was custom-made for the NYBG in 1995 and has become as much a part of the affair as the exhibition itself.

Watch the documentary
Before or after the show, stop by the Ross Lecture Hall to take in "Holiday Train Show" (30 mins), a PBS documentary narrated by David Hartman featuring interviews with Busse at his workspace.

Kick off 2013 with Thomas & Friends
Since the beloved sing-along performance doesn't begin till January (Jan 1–27; free with admission, reservations required), you may want to visit the garden twice this winter. Mini-participants help Thomas find his way from Knapford Station to Brendam Docks, learning that adventure and teamwork are a train's best friends.

The Holiday Train Show runs from Nov 17 to Jan 13, 2013, at the New York Botanical Garden.


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