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September 25, 2009

September 25-27 and October 2-4

Day Out With Thomas™, featuring Bob the Builder™ in a live Can-Do Crew stage show, begins each day at 8:30 a.m. and ends at 6 p.m. – even on Sundays. We try to make these special days as much alike as possible, so that the “best” day depends on what is convenient for you rather than what is scheduled.
Below is an alphabetical list of things you will need to know about: activities; diaper changing and restroom areas; directions; food; gift shop; local accommodations; parking and on-site transportation; tickets; train ride; and weather.
– If you have any other questions, call 704-636-2889 or toll-free at 877-NCTM-FUN or visit our Web site at

• Day Out With Thomas™ offers an opportunity for children and their grownups to take a 25-minute ride with Thomas the Tank Engine™ and pose for a picture with Sir Topham Hatt™, the Superintendent of the Railroad. Every event includes Thomas & Friends™ storytelling, a viewing station for Thomas & Friends videos, temporary tattoos, and an Imagination Station.

• A special guest will also pay a visit to the Day Out With Thomas event, as everyone’s favorite builder, Bob the Builder™, stops by to help his friend. In a 20-minute performance, Bob the Builder will ask for the help of aspiring Can-Do Crew members in building a great project.
– Bob the Builder shows will take place four times per day at 10 a.m., Noon, 2 and 4 p.m. About 30 minutes after each show, Bob will be available for pictures.

• The activities on site at Day Out With Thomas™ are for you and your children to enjoy for several hours or more. Your ticket defines a specific Thomas train ride time; however, Bob the Builder stage shows will take place at 10 a.m., Noon, 2, and 4 p.m. and do not have assigned seating, so you may enjoy one or more performances if you choose. Please plan your day accordingly so that you arrive at least one hour before your scheduled train departure, and also allow enough time to attend one of the Bob the Builder shows.

• Event maps will be available at the information booth, showing you where and when the various activities will take place. The site opens early at 8:30 a.m. and stays open late until 6 p.m. so that you can enjoy all of the activities.

• Our site was originally the steam locomotive repair facility for Southern Railway. It is large and fairly flat and handicapped-accessible. Wheelchair lifts are available on our train rides. If you have specific needs, simply ask a staff member and we will do our best to accommodate you.

The additional activities are included in the price of your ticket include: Visit with Sir Topham Hatt, Temporary Tattoos, Magician, Model Train Layouts, Storyteller, Live Music, Thomas the Tank™ and Bob the Builder™ Videos, Coloring Area, Hay Bale Slide Play Area, Inflatable Bounce Castles, Putt Putt Golf, Thomas the Tank Play tables, Operation Life Saver locomotive on display, and more.

• A photo area near the real Thomas the Tank Engine will be available for you to take your own snapshots in between train ride times. A professional photographer may also be set up in that area and will offer photo packages for a fee.
– Whether you take your own pictures or have them professionally made, you must still wait in line for your turn, since this is also used for crowd control so that the train ride can depart on time.

• You will also want to bring a camera to get a picture of your child with Sir Topham Hatt and Bob the Builder. There is no professional setup at these locations.
– Disposable cameras, 35MM film, batteries, and memory cards will be available for sale in the Gift Shop.

• A second train ride – a Caboose Train – will also run on approximately the same schedule as Thomas. This is NOT covered by your Thomas ticket, and tickets for this ride are not sold in advance.
– Museum members can ride this train at a discounted rate. For others, tickets will be at “festival” rate (same for everybody 3 and up – probably $7 each).
– The Caboose Train loads at Barber Junction Visitor Center.

• A truly nice diaper changing room is available at no charge during Thomas. Find it on the event map.
– There are no restrooms attached to the diaper changing room. Restrooms are clustered next to Barber Junction Visitor Center, the red brick building near the Thomas train loading area, and in the far end of the Roundhouse. Port-a-jons will also be available throughout the site.

• The North Carolina Transportation Museum is located in Spencer, in the central piedmont of North Carolina, less than a five minute drive from Exit 79 off Interstate 85, and almost exactly halfway between Greensboro and Charlotte. In good traffic we are a 45-minute drive from the outskirts of Charlotte, Greensboro, Winston Salem, Statesville, and Albemarle.
– Our address is 411 S. Salisbury Avenue, Spencer, NC 28159. Our Foundation’s mailing address is NCTMF, P. O. Box 69, Spencer, NC 28159.
– Salisbury Avenue in Spencer is an extension of North Main Street in Salisbury. Both are also Hwy. 29. By the time it passes our entrance, it is also Hwys. 70 and 150. Hwys. 601 and 52 come near.
Get Google Map directions here.

• Take North Carolina’s Amtrak train to get to the event. Click here for information on trainride schedules and prices, or visit

• Approximately ten food vendors will be on site – mostly area civic groups, and with very reasonable prices.
– If you prefer, you are permitted to bring your own food and use the picnic shelters. You are also permitted to leave the site and return during the day. Finding another parking space, however, could be a problem.
– There are several restaurants and some very nice shops within walking distance.
– Salisbury also has an excellent selection of restaurants.

• The BIG tent is our special Thomas the Tank™ and Bob the Builder™ Gift Shop. Our regular museum Gift Station will also be open. Our Foundation is a non-profit associated with a state-owned facility, so there is no sales tax.
– Both gift shops will accept Visa, MasterCard, Discover Card, and American Express, as well as cash and checks – with proper identification.
– A branch bank (SunTrust) with a teller machine is across the street from the Museum. A Cash Points station is located in the Food Lion shopping center about one block north of the museum.

• This event is the museum’s largest fundraiser of the year and is run by museum staff and volunteers. Funds go toward restoration projects and educational programming.

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