FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 11, 2021
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Holiday Junction opens with a milestone at Cincinnati Museum Center

Beloved Duke Energy Holiday Trains celebrate 75th season

CINCINNATI – The holidays are back at Cincinnati Museum Center (CMC). The Duke Energy Holiday Trains continue to evoke childlike wonder in kids of all ages as they celebrate their 75th year. A blizzard of custom-built LEGO bricks returns, featuring whimsical scenes and characters from your favorite books and movies. Historic trains and new technology fill the galleries with moments of winter wonder. And Santa is feeding his reindeer and prepping his sleigh for a trip to the tristate. Memories are waiting to made together.

Tickets for Holiday Junction featuring the Duke Energy Holiday Trains are limited and timed entry is required, so reserve yours in advance at Tickets are $10 each or $5 when added to any other museum experience.

Since 1946, families have gathered to watch as miniature locomotives and railcars zip around snowbanks and crowded streets. They’ve pored over the scenes of people dragging home freshly-cut trees, pushing cars up snow-covered hills and crowding the rail station. This year, adults will once again bend down to share the same eye-level views they remember from their childhood and hoist a new generation onto their shoulders for a fresh look at a Cincinnati holiday tradition. Children who grew up visiting the trains downtown now bring their grandchildren to see the same trains at Cincinnati Museum Center. Generations can even reminisce together over an interactive storybook featuring photos of the iconic trains over the decades.

“Year after year, decade after decade, generation after generation the Duke Energy Holiday Trains have delighted families during the holidays,” said Elizabeth Pierce, president & CEO of Cincinnati Museum Center. “Some people will fall in love with the trains for the first time this year, others for the 75th time, but for everyone we are delighted to once again stoke the fires and send this beloved holiday tradition along their 1,000 feet of track for past and present generations alike.”

The Duke Energy Holiday Trains are surrounded by other incredible train layouts, some dating back over 100 years. The Carlisle & Finch Company, based in Cincinnati, produced the world’s first toy electric train in 1896. Their 1904 version click-clacks through Holiday Junction, showcasing meticulous craftsmanship and detail in its metal trains, cars, buildings and bridges. Nearby is a pre-World War II Lionel layout and a Lionel Super O layout from the 1960s, complete with ready-made structures designed to complement the O-scale trains.

Back again is Brickopolis, a blizzard of LEGO bricks crafted into fantastical scenes from the magical worlds of Disney, Marvel, DC Comics, Harry Potter and more. The whimsical display is a seek and find treat surrounding a stunning LEGO metropolis complete with running trains, active seashores and hijinks by the local residents.

Speaking of seek and find, a holiday scavenger hunt featuring CMC-themed objects hidden in the garden railway layout begs you to walk around, peel your eyes and scour every detail for flying pigs, polar bears, and more tucked away in the snowy hills.

Santa arrives November 26

Of course, no holiday is complete with a visit to Santa. Santa makes his grand arrival Friday, November 26 aboard a historic firetruck courtesy of the Cincinnati Fire Museum. Regardless of which list you’re on, he’ll be sitting by his fireplace eager to hear what you want for the holidays or ready for you to plead your case. His belly will be shaking like a bowl full of jelly in the Public Landing adjacent to Holiday Junction.

Classic OMNIMAX® film Rocky Mountain Express returns

Even the OMNIMAX® Theater is turning into a winter wonderland as the classic film Rocky Mountain Express takes you on an immersive journey through the rugged beauty of the Canadian Rockies aboard a historic steam locomotive.

Holiday Junction featuring the Duke Energy Holiday Trains will be open through January 3, 2022. Hours will be 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Thursday through Monday with select extended hours.

Tickets are $10 each for adults and children or $5 with the purchase of any other museum experience. Admission is free for CMC Members. Tickets are limited so be sure to reserve yours in advance. Visit for more details and special holiday hours.


About Cincinnati Museum Center
Cincinnati Museum Center (CMC) at Union Terminal is a nationally recognized, award-winning institution housed in a National Historic Landmark. CMC is a vital community resource that sparks curiosity, inspiration, epiphany and dialogue. CMC was awarded the 2009 National Medal for Museum and Library Service from the Institute of Museum and Library Services and received accreditation from the American Alliance of Museums in 2012, one of a select few museums in the nation to receive both honors. Organizations within CMC include the Cincinnati History Museum, Museum of Natural History & Science, Children’s Museum, Robert D. Lindner Family OMNIMAX® Theater, Cincinnati History Library and Archives and the Geier Collections and Research Center. Housed in historic Union Terminal – a National Historic Landmark restored in 2018 and recognized as the nation’s 45th most important building by the American Institute of Architects – CMC welcomes more than 1.8 million visits annually, making it one of the most visited museums in the country. For more information, visit

About Champion More Curiosity
The $85 million Champion More Curiosity campaign is shaping Cincinnati Museum Center’s future while creating generations of critical thinkers to power the innovation of our region. By Championing More Curiosity and helping build the future of Cincinnati Museum Center, you can fuel the economic prosperity of our region. Champion More Curiosity will build or reimagine over a dozen permanent exhibits and galleries and equip state-of-the-art labs for cutting-edge research for students from elementary grades to post-docs. Today’s wide-eyed explorers will be tomorrow’s innovators. We work shoulder-to-shoulder to engage our community in monumental moments of epiphany, wonder and connection. As we inspire all generations to learn, grow and thrive at Cincinnati Museum Center, we Champion More Curiosity. Consider making a lifelong impact by donating in support of Championing More Curiosity at