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Holiday carries a musical message of hope for the hungry

Santa made an appearance with Willy Porter and The Claytones during the Holiday Train’s stop. (Lowell Anderson/Echo Press)1 / 3
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You could hear the train a comin’ – along with the Christmas music it brought to town. The Canadian Pacific Holiday Train rolled into Alexandria Monday to help raise money, food and awareness for the fight against hunger.

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Willy Porter and The Claytones performed a variety of festive holiday tunes from the Holiday Train’s boxcar stage.

The event was free but attendees were asked to make a donation to the local food shelf.

During its stop, the Holiday Train presented a $4,500 check to the Douglas County Outreach Food Shelf.

After Alexandria, the train moved on to Detroit Lakes, Winger, Plummer and Thief River Falls. It finished its Minnesota schedule with a stop in Elbow Lake Tuesday before heading to North Dakota.

Now in its 15th year, the holiday train supports food shelf programs throughout Canada and the United States. It is scheduled to make stops in 150 towns this year.

The trains are decorated with thousands of LED lights and festive designs.

Since 1999, the Holiday Train program has provided more than 3 million pounds of food for food shelves. It has covered about 100,000 miles and entertained hundreds of thousands of supporters.

It takes 30 Canadian Pacific “elves” 100 days to completely transform and decorate the trains before they start their journey each year.

Al Edenloff
Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.  
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