Medina Railroad Museum

Medina Railroad Museum: Hours, Address, Medina Railroad Museum Reviews: 4/5

Medina Railroad Museum
Speciality Museums
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11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
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90 reviews
Very good

Buffalo, NY27 contributions
Dec 2013 • Family
In December we took our 2-1/2 year old granddaughter on the Polar Express ride. We paid $28 per ticket and were very excited about the "trip". The Railroad museum is wonderful and the staff very helpful, however we were disappointed in the excursion. While the "characters" were all volunteers and very young, they could have been a bit more enthusiastic. As advertised, they did pass out hot chocolate and cookies, both of which were good, but were passed out with such limited enthusiasm that it seemed like they couldn't wait for it to be over. Our conductor was sweet and did interact with with children well. When the "bum" walked through the train car, you wouldn't have even noticed him if you were not waiting for his appearance. When arriving at the "North Pole" there were elves dancing and waving on the platform and the area was decorated, but unless you were sitting at the window just where they were located, they were a blur going by. It would have been much better to spread them out over the entire stretch so that all of the children could have enjoyed their antics. Santa came aboard and the little gift of a bell was of better quality than I expected and he (Santa) stopped and chatted with each child. But again a grave lack of enthusiasm. This ride was mundane, the "story teller" was just one girl walking the aisle with one book - so many times the story was well passed the page that was being displayed to the children. Three story in the back, middle and front would have made this part of the experience meaningful for all aboard. For the price paid, we expected more, not a "Disney" experience, but one that could have engaged the entire car. This experience could have been magical with just a little more engagement and excitement, but it was just OK at best. I would say that ticket prices at 1/2 the cost would have been worth the experience, but at almost $30 per ticket one would expect a bit more. I cannot recommend this ride at this price point. However, the museum itself is great and one that I can recommend wholeheartedly. So my advice is to go visit the museum when there is not a "special event". I hope that they either lower the price or help the volunteers to be a bit more engaging.
Written January 14, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Chaun H
Derby, NY43 contributions
Dec 2012 • Family
Went to Medina Train Museum & Polar Express train ride with 2 small children (ages 2 &4). They loved the museum, so much to see & very interactive. We arrived early & had plenty of time to look @ all the trains. Everytime you looked at the set up you saw something different. It was great. We really went for the Polar Express with Santa & were surprised with the museum. The train ride was so cute, the chefs served cookies & hot cocoa. They read the polar express as we rode, I must say it was hard to hear because the children were so excited to see Santa. 1/2 way through, Santa came aboard, the children were so excited!! He talked to every child & took time for many pictures, the cildren's face were priceless!!! Well worth the trip & plan to do it again next year.
Written December 4, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Linda H
Lockport, NY66 contributions
Dec 2012 • Family
Took my 4-1/2 yr. old granddaughter to the Medina Railroad Museum's Polar Express trip. I actually screwed up and thought we were to get the train in Lockport. After waiting around and realizing that there was some mistake - drove like a crazy person to Medina and explained to the ticket lady that we had missed the 4:40 trip and had a very upset little lady hoping to get on the train. She managed to get us on an otherwise full train, luckily for me (instead of being the best Nana, I would have felt like the worst for goofing up!)
Let me tell you that although it is prob. a little expensive if you have a lot of kids...if they are at that right age, they will just love it! From the authentic looking tickets to the Hot, Hot, Hot cocoa servers, the conductor (owner Marty) coming around and punching the tickets, Santa and his elves getting on @ the North Pole - it was all just magical. The best part (even for this old grandma) was when Santa presented each child with their own "1st gift of Christmas bell" (engraved with Polar Express) Don't miss it. Was worth every penny. My granddaughter wanted to know if it was going to be morning when we got home ;-)
Written December 3, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Debi M
1 contribution
Dec 2021
What to Expect on the Polar Express
Dress in your favorite pajamas and capture the memories on the Polar Express ride! On the trip, you and your family will enjoy hot chocolate and cookies, music from the Polar Express movie, story time reading from the book and singing Christmas carols. When the train arrives at the North Pole, Santa will join the train ride and will hand out a bell to each child, just like in the movie! What you really get is to sit is a railcar that you cannot really tell is moving unless you catch a glimpse of the lights out the window. There was NO SOUND on the car so we could not hear the music, we could not hear singing... we got a hot chocolate and a cookie.. Santa did hand out a bell... but there was nothing at all special or magical about this ride. Staff were commenting about how they were pleased it was the last ride of the night they were tired and wanted to go home (yes we heard these comments) A staff person walked down the isle at one point with a book open to a page and said I know you cannot hear it but this is the story they are telling.. When I complained she said I don't know what is going on with the sound it has been this way all day. Well that is not acceptable when you are charging people for a "magical" experience. We drove over an hour for this "magical" family experience and were very disappointed. If the sound was not working the staff could have read the book aloud or spent an hour singing Christmas songs with the kids... something would have been better than just sitting in a railcar doing nothing but talking to each other. NOTHING magical about this adventure. I guess maybe if 1st class you might have had a better experience but for coach very unimpressed.
Written December 19, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Rhonda P
Adams Basin, NY148 contributions
Oct 2021 • Friends
Thought this would be fun. From having to wait out in the cold for an hour to the lack of food vendors right at the start it was awful. Lots of elderly and nowhere heated to wait. Promised food vendors there was 1 and they only had 2 people in the booth. No coffee!! Cold and rainy and no coffee! On the train in first class broken bathroom. Had to go to next car and it was literally the worst bathroom I’ve ever been in. No sink water, no toilet paper, filthy! To top it they ran out of refreshments so only pop to choose from. Then just when it can’t get worse they have solder couple playing the guitar and singing. Unreal! I don’t want to hear that! I will never recommend this to anyone. Very very poorly done. Disappointed that something I thought would be fun and different was spoiled by a poorly run event. Should refund everyone. First class? What a joke.
Written October 23, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Diane F
1 contribution
Oct 2021
The museum was very interesting, the train on the other hand was dirty inside, no cleaning was done , the bathrooms on the train were filthy. No water to wash hand or even hand sanitizer. the seats on the train were covered with hair ( looked like dog and cat hair. ) They were certainly never cleaned. The floors were covered in dirt and looked to never have been vaccumed. Not worth the price we paid.. Never again.
Written October 18, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Kathleen S
Elma, NY2 contributions
Dec 2013 • Family
I purchased 11 tickets (entire family) for my children and grand kids based on a report I seen on channel 2's morning show. Everyone came in their pj's excited to experience the train ride to the North Pole! For over $300 this was terribly disappointing! We were given half cups of cold hot chocolate and a cookie. The cookie was good. You could not hear the polar express story because the sound system is terrible. The North Pole was a stop in front of Ace hardware?? Could they have at least decorated the area and had a North Pole sign?? Santa's quick appearance was ok. Oh, and dress warm because the train is freezing!! Will never do it again and would not recommend for the price they are charging! Very, very over-priced. Shame it is so difficult to find family activities that are priced fairly.
Written December 16, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Tonawanda, NY1 contribution
Dec 2013
We took our son and elderly mother-in-law to ride the Polar Express train on December 14, 2013. We sat in coach 4, and it never warmed up. I was so cold and we even had blankets with us! The outside temperature was 14 degrees. We could see our breath inside the train car for the entire trip. I felt really bad for the children who were dressed in their pajamas and robes. We anticipated the hot cocoa only to b disappointed once again. The cocoa was only Luke warm, although it had good flavor. The cookie was delicious. I thought the Polar Express story was going to b read aloud, however, we never heard a thing. Last year, Mr. and Mrs. Claus came to visit each child, posed for pics, and spent a couple of minutes with the kids. This year, it was only Santa without Mrs. Claus, briefly asked my son what he wanted for Christmas, responded with a "we'll see", handed him a bell, said merry Christmas and off he went, after less than 1 minute with us. The Conductor was very friendly and courteous. Last year, it was absolutely wonderful, magical even. This year was not the same, sooo disappointed. Will not be doing the tour again.
Written December 17, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Spencerport, New York49 contributions
May 2015 • Family
Huge disappointment. For the amount of money we spent for 4 adults and one child ($21 each) we could have gone to the zoo AND had lunch. Boarding process was a nightmare - if it had been managed or seating assigned in advance it would have been much more efficient. I'm sure it's a huge fund raiser for the train museum - but there's tons of room for improvement. We won't do this again for sure.
Written May 11, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Rochester, New York, United States48 contributions
Nov 2013 • Family
We had taken the train ride at "A Day Out with Thomas" several times in Medina. It's a slow, boring ride back and forth, but my son loves Thomas. We were nervous to take another ride from Medina fearing it would be the same slow, uneventful ride. We decided to take our 3 and 6 year old on the Polar Express Thanksgiving weekend 2013 after hearing some good things about it - an opportunity to visit with Santa and review wish lists, cute, decorated North Pole, elves that sing and make snow, Santa and Mrs. Claus, etc. We watched the movie and thought it would be fun. We knew better.

The good/Polar Express parts: It starts out mirroring the Polar Express with a special golden ticket. The conductors are walking around, visiting with everyone. Girls dressed up like the chefs come around and hand out hot cocoa and delicious cookies. A ho-bo gets on and they act out a little skit about how he has to get off since he doesn't have a ticket. Santa gets on and hands out a bell to each child.

The rough areas: It's a slow, boring ride with no decorations or anything to look at along thw way. The story is playing overhead but it's really loud on the train and you can't really hear it. The North Pole was nothing more than a "village" with an Ace Hardware. Our kids were quite disappointed and asked "Is that really the North Pole?" Um, no. No lights, no Mrs. Claus, no decorations, very weak. Santa did not sit down with each child. My son had his letter in his hand and asked when he could tell Santa about it. After handing out the bells, he came back to visit for a minute, but didn't let them sit on his lap or pose for any photos. My son stood on the chair to try to review his list with him. My nephew told him "I believe, that's what the bell means" - the Santa Claus (who did look very authentic at least) had no clue what he was talking about from the story. It was a very expensive ride - $100 for a family of 4 for the early-bird regular (not first class) ride.

Maybe it's because we went out of Medina (we've heard good things out of Saratoga and Virginia), went for an early bird time slot while it was light out, too early for any Christmas lights and didn't pay for the first class option. We didn't expect a rip-roaring ride off the tracks and a trip to the top of the train or the engine room, like the movie. But this was a rather expensive ride that had a lot of potential, but fell very short.
Written January 26, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Medina Railroad Museum is open:
  • Tue - Sun 11:00 AM - 5:00 PM

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