trainsIf any of your little ones are obsessed with trains like mine are, Sept. 23-26 and Oct. 1-2 (2016) offer two weekends for your chance to take a ride on Thomas the Train. The North Carolina Transportation Museum, which is located only about an hour North from Charlotte in Spencer, NC, will be hosting a Thomas the Train weekend event.

As a Salisbury native (located only about 5 minutes from Spencer), I grew up going on field trips to The Transportation Museum. Since every year, we moaned and groaned about yet another trip to The Transportation Museum, I never thought I would be so excited to take my children to the same place where I had been on so many field trips.

As a parent of toddlers or young children, this place is AWESOME! The kids get to watch all of the trains leave the station, walk through
the trains, see a real live train conductor, take a 25 minute ride on the train and then spend endless amounts of time playing on the train tables that are set up in the gift shop. I will warn you that if you leave the gift shop with a wooden train whistle like we did, it is truly the gift that keeps on giving…my advice…skip the whistle 🙂

After a fun filled morning at The North Carolina Transportation Museum, you can drive about 3 miles into downtown Salisbury and have lunch at the famed Hap’s Grill located at 116 North Main Street in Salisbury, NC. It is the perfect spot for a quick hotdog or hamburger. I will tell you that there is no indoor seating, so you will see kids sitting on the curb eating their messy hamburgers and drinking Cheerwine out of glass bottles. If you are looking for a sit down restaurant, simply walk across the street to Spanky’s Deli located at 101 North Main Street. Spanky’s is known for their homemade icecream and our favorite lunch spot.

If you have little ones that need a nap, then after lunch is the perfect time to hop back in the car and let the little ones nap in the car on the way home. If you have older kids who do not need to nap, my advice would be to head over to Dan Nicholas Park, which s only about 15 minutes from downtown Salisbury. This park is truly a jewel. Every time we visit my parents, we end up at Dan Nicholas Park. There are endless amounts of activities for kids and adults of all ages. My kids LOVE riding the carousel and feeding the ducks. There are paddle boats, multiple playgrounds for every age, mini golf, a beautifully restored carousel, mining for gems, a train ride through the woods, a spray fountain, a petting zoo, picnic tables and hiking trails. I would highly recommend an afternoon at Dan Nicholas Park.

So, if you are looking for a weekend adventure, I would suggest making the short drive to the Spencer / Salisbury area to give your kids a truly unique experience!