The snow has already made an appearance in my small town of Durand, Michigan. When others might groan about this particular news, the citizens of our quaint town simply smile with the realization that the holidays are near. In small communities, the holidays are filled with traditions that bring us together. It’s just in our bones.
One of Durand’s most loved traditions is the Durand Union Station. The railroad is a huge part of a family’s way of life around here, and is now a big part of our heritage. The beautiful depot is simply magnificent during the holidays. Multi-colored Christmas lights are strung from the roof, while the lights from the Christmas trees shine through the ballroom windows. It’s a magical sight welcoming you to a little piece of Christmas. Walking into the building, the first thing you notice is more than 50 individually decorated Christmas trees. The 1905 oak staircase will lead you up to the ballroom or you can travel around the corner to the Amtrak waiting room. Evergreen garland, festive ribbon, and ornaments of all shapes and sizes transform this building into a little piece of the North Pole.
Christmas trees are decorated by local families, organizations, and businesses. The Amtrak waiting room, upstairs ballroom, and boardroom are filled with these beautiful, heartfelt trees. From handmade ornaments to antique ornaments and trimmings, you’re sure to love all the decorations and really feel the holiday spirit.
The Durand Union Station is one of only a handful of original train depots still in operation today. It is also one of the most photographed depots in the country. To keep this building maintained and functioning takes many dedicated volunteers, loyal staff, and year round fundraising. One of the Depot’s most anticipated fundraiser is the annual Holiday Wine Tasting Extravaganza. In early December you can purchase tickets to visit the Depot while trying great local wine and hors’ devours. This year the Depot is featuring wines from Burgdorf’s Winery, located in Dewitt, Michigan. With over 30 years of experience, the owners of this winery have earned numerous awards for their wine creations.
To experience the Durand Union Station first hand during one of the most magical times of the year, visit during the Wine Tasting! This year’s event is being held on Saturday, December 13th from 6pm to 9:30 pm. Tickets are available for $25/person, $48/Couple, and $108/Group of 8. Tickets include a complimentary wine glass and can be purchase at the Durand Union Station, by visiting durandstation.org, or calling (989) 288-3561. Reserve your tickets today, as they tend to sell out quickly, and begin a new holiday tradition! Be sure to “Like” The Durand Union Station – Michigan Railroad History Museum Facebook page to keep up with all of the upcoming events!
–Courtney Gazso, Guest Writer