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Saturday, August 20, 2016

Lombard: Yorktown Center Train


Ready to ride! 
 Lombard, IL -- With the big kids back in school, my preschooler and I took advantage of one of his last summer days to go on an excursion for just the two of us. I chose Yorktown Center as our destination since I had heard about the mall's train and knew it would be a hit. (Also, my older train lover may be just a bit above the 54 inch maximum passenger height.)

William and I arrived just as the mall opened, even before the Yorktown Express Train operator had arrived at the station. So we peeked at the tracks from above and browsed through a store or two first. Before long the train was ready for rides. One ride costs $2, payable to an automated kiosk that takes payment in exchange for ride tokens. (William wished that he would have been able to keep the golden coin: "They could scan the train quarter and I could keep it and ride on any train anywhere!") The train operator collected the token then let the sole passenger chose his car. For this first ride, he picked the middle car,  but later decided that on any future rides he would ride in the engine. The ride lasts several minutes, enough time to loop around an island of camping mannequins and woodland critters. By the time we left the shopping center an hour or two later several families were watching their young ones enjoy a ride.
View from the mall's second level

The Yorktown Express is just one of the fun features for young ones. At the mall's Center Court, a 2,000 square foot soft-surface play area offers ample opportunity to use those wiggly, growing muscles. During a snack or lunch break smaller folks are treated to kid-sized tables in the food court. Any "nature-calls" moments are made easier by the child-sized toilet options in the upstairs family restrooms, assuming kids can get past the cartoons on the TV in the lounge!

Until this visit, it had been at least 25 years since the last time I had been inside Yorktown Center. I'm impressed with it's brightness, cleanliness and attention to the needs of those bound to spend time in an indoor mall: families of the stroller set. The five-year old enjoyed it enough that he raved about everything to his big brother and sister and wants to bring them back for a train ride soon. I just hope they fit!

Find Yorktown Center at the northeast corner of Butterfield Road and Highland Avenue in Lombard. It is open from 10 a.m. till 9 p.m. everyday except Sunday, when its open 11 a.m. till 6 p.m. The train is located near Marshalls/Homegoods on the main floor. Rides are free on "Toot-toot Tuesdays." 

This way to the Yorktown Express! 
Goodbye until next time!