Open November 10 through January 8, 2024
Entry: Additional Ticket Required Location: Union Terminal
Celebrate 77 years of winterland whimsy
From the child with their eyes peeled for visitors from the North Pole to the teen counting every LEGO brick to the grandparent watching model trains zip through a mini metropolis, our signature holiday experience brings families together in ageless joy. And this year our beloved Duke Energy Holiday Trains are celebrating their 77th season.
The Duke Energy Holiday Trains have been a Cincinnati holiday staple since 1946, delighting generations since they first debuted downtown in 1946. Track-level views reveal intricate details of the display, where over 300 rail cars and 60 locomotives steam past anxious passengers waiting to board while cars sit with snow to their hubcaps and the perfect trees strapped to their roofs.
Holiday Junction features bursts of winter whimsy that greet you as soon as you enter the door. The Northern Lights display serves as the perfect backdrop for family photos as wispy green lights dance behind you and snow-rimmed trees surround you. The history of the Duke Energy Holiday Trains is also told through an interactive storybook filled with photos of the iconic trains over the decades.
The Holiday Scavenger Hunt features hidden objects in the garden railway layout begging you to walk around, peel your eyes and scour every detail tucked away in the snowy hills.
Returning once again is Brickopolis, a blizzard of LEGO bricks crafted into fantastical scenes from the magical worlds of Star Wars, a winter holiday wonderland, amusement park, medieval village and local landmarks. The whimsical display is another seek and find treat surrounding a stunning LEGO metropolis complete with running trains, active seashores and hijinks by the local residents.
Of course, no holiday is complete without a visit to Santa. Santa makes his grand arrival by helicopter courtesy of UC Health on Friday, November 24. You can visit the jolly elf by his fireplace on the Mezzanine in the Ruthven Gallery.
Also returning this year is the OMNIMAX® film Rocky Mountain Express, where you can immerse yourself in the rugged beauty of the Canadian Rockies aboard a historic steam locomotive.
Holiday Junction is free for Members and $10 for non-Members or just $5 with any other Museum admission.
Holiday Junction at Cincinnati Museum Center
History of the Trains
Duke Trains Workshop
Now showing through January 8, 2024
Plunge onward into the Canadian Rockies on Rocky Mountain Express! With spectacular OMNIMAX® aerial cinematography experience the story of how this nearly impossible railroad was built in this gorgeous, yet perilous terrain.
Friday, November 24, 2023 at Noon
Join us on Friday, November 24 as Santa arrives by helicopter! The festivities will kick off at 11 a.m. with the Chris Comer Trio playing live jazz music in the Rotunda and merry elves roaming the Museum. Followed by UC Medical Center dropping Santa himself off at Noon.
Saturday, December 16 at 9 a.m.
Jolly tales of merry mischief with Santa himself. Located in the Cr(eat)e Culinary Studio featuring the Kroger Food Lab next to the gift shop in the Rotunda.
Saturday, December 2 at 8:30 and 10 a.m.
($5 per Member)
Ice and decorate your own cookie with an assortment of toppings to make a culinary masterpiece almost too beautiful to eat. Located in the Cr(eat)e Culinary Studio featuring the Kroger Food Lab next to the gift shop in the Rotunda.
Saturday, December 9 from 8 to 9:30 a.m.
($7 per Member)
Santa can’t survive on cookies alone. Enjoy donuts and a hot cocoa bar, complete with marshmallows and toppings sweeter than any sugar plums. Located in the Rotunda.
Tower A is closed for the 2020 holiday season.
Tower A is currently closed for the 2020 holiday season.
Guests can get a unique view of the active Union Terminal railyard — the original control tower of the station.
Open Thursday – Monday
10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Closed Tuesday and Wednesday
Closed Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day
Member’s-only early entry: Saturdays at 9 a.m.
Customer Service Hours:
Monday – Sunday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.