Canadian Pacific Holiday Train

Decked with colourful lights, two CP Holiday Trains make their way across Canada and parts of the US, stopping at various locations for free concerts and celebrations.

The main concert train!

Did you catch the CP Holiday Train? Back after a two-year hiatus and now in its 24th year, the family-fun CP Holiday Trains started its journey once again from Montreal. There are two trains, with the US and Canadian-bound train departing Montreal on Number 22 and the all-Canadian train departing Montreal on November 27th. You can check the full schedule of both trains on their website, which also houses the real-time holiday train tracker.

Each event supports local food banks and food shelves by raising money, food, and awareness for food insecurity issues. You can also make donations online on their website.

I was always planning on going to one of these events to photograph the train but never had the opportunity until this year. I opted to go to the Milton stop since I anticipated the Toronto-stop to be crowded. The US and Canadian Holiday Train makes its way to the Milton stop—located at Kelso Park. It was easy to get to with plenty of parking. The parking lot is fairly large so there is plenty of room to walk around—and for those budding photographers, set up your tripod. There were a few fire pits set up to keep you and your family wam too.

The parking lot at Kelso Park is large enough to house everyone.

The train came into the area from the east, making its way west so if you want to capture the front of the train, be sure to stay in the farthest east you can along the fence.

The US and Canadian CP Holiday Train approaching the Milton, Ontario stop.

Once the train comes into the park, the front of the train goes beyond the parking lot, making it no longer visible. The train stops to ensure the main stage is positioned near the middle of the parking lot. The full-sized door opens (rather quickly) and the concert starts.

Lindsay Ell has fun with the band members.

Depending on the location and train, the performers will change. When I went, we had performances from JoJo Mason and Lindsay Ell. It was a short set, but nonetheless action-packed. Or maybe I only felt like that as I was walking around trying to cover all my angles.

I admired JoJo Mason’s energy on stage as he tried to hype the crowd up at the beginning. The performance ended with the two singing a set together.

And just like that, the door closed. The entire event lasted about 40min. so from a photographer’s point of view, you have to be quick about where you need to go to get the shot that you want.

Don’t forget to make a non-perishable food donation at the tent at each location!

Watch my YouTube summary of this event…and be sure to subscribe, click like, tap that notification button, swipe for love, and smash that monitor to support my work.


Have you ever seen the CP Holiday Train? Which stop did you see it at? Let me know in the comments below!

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