I saw in a magazine an ad for the Snowball Express and for any of you with Thomas the Train lovers, this might be the holiday experience for you.
The train travels on the Mt. Rainier Scenic Railroad and departs from Mineral, WA. Information is available at http://www.mrsr.com/ or call 1-888-STEAM-11.
The train has a Santa car, with the "real thing" waiting to meet all passengers. The Santa car is decorated and there is hot chocolate, apple cider and cookies to munch on. Sing songs on the train and parents can enjoy the scenery. It sounds like a relaxing afternoon to me. The Snowball Express rides the rails 4 times per day every Saturday and Sunday until December 21st when Santa needs to make his way back to the North Pole.
Northwest Railway Museum's Santa Train boards in North Bend and idles along the track for 20 minutes to the Snoqualmie Train Depot. Santa is there to greet kids and parents, too. Trains board on Saturdays and Sundays from 9am to 3pm until December 20th. More info is available by calling 425-888-2206 or at http://www.trainmuseum.org/.
Lake Whatcom Railway Santa Train for train riders north in Acme. Contact 360-595-2218 for more info or go to http://www.lakewhatcomrailway.com/.