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Thomas & Friends™: Explore the Rails

Inspire the Engineer in Everyone with Thomas & Friends!

Welcome to the Island of Sodor! In Thomas & Friends™: Explore the Rails visitors find themselves surrounded by the island’s iconic locations, including Knapford Station and the Sodor Steamworks. Visitors climb aboard a large model of Thomas The Tank Engine and help him be a “Really Useful Engine.” Children race trains along a giant track, and work together to sort and load cargo to maintain engines.

The exhibit combines exciting play opportunities with important concepts in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), and an emphasis on developing 21st century skills. These ideas are woven and layered throughout the exhibit, creating an experience that speaks to a diversity of interests, age groups, and learning styles.

Host benefits include:

  • High visibility PBS Kids® programming and popular children’s book series for nearly 70 years with multigenerational appeal
  • Email-capture photo kiosk
  • Collapsible and easy-to-store wheeled carts
  • Top-notch educational, marketing and installation materials
  • Responsive support from experienced staff

Content: Science, technology, engineering, math

Target Audience: Ages 2 to 7, families and school groups

Languages: Text graphics are in English and Spanish

Development: Minnesota Children’s Museum and HIT Entertainment

Venue Length: 3-4 months

Download an informational flyer for Thomas (PDF)

Check on rental availability of this exhibit…

BOOK TODAY! Contact Amber Stevenson, Traveling Exhibits Manager by calling 651-225-6053 or contact us.

“My kids, ages 6 and 3, wanted to spend all day in the exhibit! The variety of interactive activities were fun and educational, from being able to fix Percy's wobbly wheels to selling tickets at the ticket booth to conducting the many trains on the giant island of Sodor train table, and gave my kids the opportunity to help and participate in the daily life of Thomas the Train!”

Lisa Baker, Twin Cities Frugal Mom Blog

“The Thomas & Friends™ exhibit was the biggest reason we wanted to visit the museum! Our children are huge fans of Thomas & Friends and were not disappointed by the exhibit! There was something for every age group to do — from toddlers to adults! Our children could have spent all day just at this exhibit!”

Marissa Oachs, The Review Stew

1,500-2,500 square feet

Cost Per Venue:

Open Venues: 
Tours are identical

Tour One: Spring 2020, Spring 2021 and beyond
Tour Two: Spring 2019, Summer 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020 and beyond

Past Hosts

Canadian Museum of Civilization/Musée Canadien des Civilisations
Creative Discovery Museum, Chatanooga, TN
DiscoveryCube, Santa Ana, CA
DiscoveryCube, Los Angeles, CA
Discovery Children's Museum , Las Vegas, NV
Miami Children's Museum
Minnesota Children's Museum, St. Paul, MN
Mississippi Children's Museum

Tour One: Current and Future Hosts

Port Discovery Children's Museum
January 21, 2017 - May 7, 2017

Children's Discovery Museum of San Jose
May 20, 2017 - September 10, 2017

COSI Columbus
September 23, 2017 - January 7, 2018

The Strong
January 20, 2018 - May 6, 2018

Children's Museum of Pittsburgh
May 19, 2018 - September 9, 2018

Please Touch Museum
September 22, 2018 - January 6, 2019

Children's Museum of Virginia
January 19, 2019 - May 12, 2019 

Upcountry History Museum - Furman University
May 25, 2019 - September 8, 2019

The Magic House, St. Louis Children's Museum
September 21, 2019 - January 05, 2020

Spring 2020

The Family Museum
May 23, 2020 - September 13, 2020

Kohl Children's Museum
September 26, 2020 - January 10, 2021

Available Spring 2021 and beyond

Tour Two: Past Hosts

Clay Center for the Arts & Sciences of WV
Minnesota Children's Museum

Tour Two: Current and Future Hosts

Reading Public Museum
December 17, 2016 - May 14, 2017

The Crown Center
May 27, 2017 - September 10, 2017

Liberty Science Center
September 23, 2017 - May 13, 2018

Mississippi Children's Museum
May 26, 2018 - September 10, 2018

Discovery Park of America
September 21, 2018 - December 30, 2018

Spring 2019

Summer 2019

Fall 2019

Spring 2020

San Jose Children's Discovery Museum
May 23, 2020 - September 13, 2020

Available Fall 2020 and beyond

©2014 Gullane (Thomas) Limited. Thomas & Friends™: Explore the Rails! was created by Minnesota Children’s Museum, presented by Fischer-Price and sponsored by 3M

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