If you have kids, pack up the car and head over to McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park for a day filled with fun, train and carousel rides, playgrounds, a picnic and lots of room to roam. McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park is one of the best places in Scottsdale to take the entire family.
The big draw at the park is the Paradise and Pacific Railroad train that journeys through the huge 30 acre park perched on land donated by the Fowler McCormick family to the City of Scottsdale in 1967. Guy Stillman, the son of Anne and Fowler McCormick, was the driving force behind the creation of the park. His Paradise and Pacific Railroad assembled on his property at the Stillman Ranch was offered to the city in 1971.The locomotive and cars were faithfully produced replicas of the Century Narrow Gauge Railway equipment over the course of 20 years. At one point, Walt Disney even offered to by the railroad from Guy Stillman, but Guy wanted it to stay in Scottsdale.
Now, kids and kids at heart can hop aboard the train which costs $2 per ride or there is a discount ticket book good for the train and the vintage Scottsdale Charro Carousel for $10 for 12 tickets. An "All Day" wristband lets guests ride the train and carousel all day for the value price of $10. Admission to the park is free and children under three ride the train free with a paying adult. Annual passes are $75 for the first person and $25 for each additional person age three and over.
The beautifully carved and meticulously restored Scottsdale Charro Carousel was purchased by the Scottsdale Railroad and Mechanical Society with significant participation by the Scottsdale Charros, a local service group. Completed in 1950, it is registered with the National Carousel Association for the preservation of antique carousels. It features 30 horses and 2 wheelchair chariots. It costs $2 per ride or can be used for unlimited riding with an "All Day" wristband for $10.
The Model Railroad Building is a one-of-a-kind 10,000 square foot building showcasing the work of the park's own four model railroad clubs along with surrounding railroad displays and artifacts. The McCormick Historical Railroad Exhibit is $2, the Model Railroad Exhibit is free and the Arboretum Railroad (open Saturdays only) is $1.
Two large soft-padded playgrounds at the park give kids lots of space to jump, climb and play. Covered armadas are available by reservation and many picnic tables and barbecue are also available throughout the park without reservations. The park does get very busy with birthday parties on the weekends, so be sure to call in to make reservations for armadas which can be done up to six months in advance.
McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park is located at 7301 E. Indian Bend Rd., Scottsdale. Visit www.therailroadpark.com or call (480) 312-2312 for additional information. The park is open every day except Thanksgiving and Christmas.