Waterloo Elementary School students experienced the wonder and magic of a Christmas train Wednesday morning.

The Museum and Railroad Historical Center invited elementary school groups to come aboard the North Pole Express. Railroad Historical Center volunteers and employees participated in various fun activities with students that revolved around the holiday season and trains.

“A lot of these kids have no idea what life was like 100 years ago,” said Karen Jennings, executive director of The Museum and Railroad Historical Center. “This is a good way to expose them to some of the history that helped form our town while it was growing and developing. Trains were very important for our economy and for our social life because this was how people traveled.”

The activities included creating ornaments in a gingerbread house, ringing the train bell, listening to volunteers read “The Polar Express” and doing the reindeer pokey with the museum’s program director Nickie Murphy.

“It’s just an exciting thing for kids to see a real full-sized train, and the decorations make it a festive Christmas time event,” chairman of the Railroad committee for the Museum and Railroad Center Lewis Dorrity said.

The Railroad Center will continue to spread the Christmas spirit Friday and Saturday by inviting every Greenwood resident to come aboard the North Pole Express. The night will consist of a live reenactment of “The Polar Express” by Greenwood High School’s Theatre Program, dinner will be served and other festive activities for adults and kids will be available. Tickets for children are $25 and tickets for adults $10.

“It provides a really neat experience for the historical association and for having a fun Christmas experience,” Jennings said.

Contact reporter Jonathan Limehouse at 864-943-5644 or follow him on twitter @jon_limehouse.