Shining Time Station

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Shining Time Station

Shining Time Station title screen
Genre children
Created by Britt Allcroft
Rick Sigglekow
Starring Ringo Starr (1989-1990)
George Carlin (1991-1993)
Didi Conn
Leonard Jackson (1989-1990)
Tom Jackson (1991-1993)
Nicole Leach (1989-1990)
Jason Woliner (1989-1990)
Erica Luttrell (1991-1993)
Ari Magder (1991-1993)
Danielle Marcot (1991-1993)
Brian O'Connor
Country of origin Flag of the United States United States
No. of episodes 76
Running time 22-23 Minutes
Original channel PBS
Original run 1989 – 1993

Shining Time Station was an American spin-off of Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends series, although it was co-created by Britt Allcroft. The series was produced by The Britt Allcroft Company and WNET and aired on PBS from 1989 to 1993, but it was rerun until 1997 and returned in specials in 1994 and as Mr. Conductor's Thomas Tales in 1997 and their last appearance was in Thomas and the Magic Railroad in 2000.


Shining Time Station is a train station that resides on the Indian Valley Railroad and is located in the fictional town of Shining Time. The station is managed by Stacy Jones, the station master whose grandmother ran the station when she was Stacy's age. The station's workshop is run by railroad engineer and mechanic Harry Cupper. In the second season, Cupper is transferred to a new station in Fort Farley and he is replaced by Billy Twofeathers.

A local named Horace Schemer (simply called Schemer by his friends) runs the station's arcade and is always finding new ways to make more money or to protect his arcade, which he considers his "castle". He serves as the series' comic relief. Schemer thinks that any strange goings-on in the station happen because the station is haunted. His catch phrases include "Genius time" (for when he has an idea), "Schemer's system of success" (for when he wants to impress his friends) and "This place is haunted". Starting in the second season, Schemer would sometimes be aided in his schemes by his nephew, Schemee.

There are some kids who visit the station as well. They are Harry's granddaughter, Tanya and Stacy's nephew, Matt. In the second season, three new children visit the station: Harry's granddaughter, Kara; Stacy's nephew, Dan; and a new girl named Becky.

Other visitors to the station include various townspeople, such as socialite and gossip Midge Smoot, Shining Time's mayor Osgood Bob Flopdinger (who, oddly, was originally described as the mayor of East Shemp), and J.B. King, Esq., the superintendent of the Indian Valley Railroad. In the second season, three new townspeople were added: farmer Ginny Johnson, general store owner Barton Winslow, and bus driver Felix Perez.

Then there is a jukebox inside the arcade that houses a band that performs for the nickels that are dropped inside. The band consists of Didi the drummer, cowboy twin brothers Tex and Rex who simultainiously play between them one guitar larger than them, Grace who plays bass guitar, and Tito the leader who plays the piano and collects the nickels they accumulate. They usually play traditional American songs, but their style of music mixes folk, country, pop, and rock-and-roll. Other puppets occasionally appear.

Finally, there is Mr. Conductor, a tiny man who lives in a switch house inside the mural and tells stories of the Island of Sodor to the kids. These stories are told to teach them a lesson, encourage them to do something, teach them not to be afraid or just to relate to something that's going on at the station. He is magical in that he comes and goes in a cloud of his magic gold dust.


Series Regulars

Season 1 Regulars

Season 2-3 Regulars

Recurring Characters (Full Series)

Recurring Characters (Season 2-3)

The Jukebox Puppet Band

  • Olga Marin - Didi
  • Alan Semok - Tex Boy
  • Craig Marin - Rex Boy
  • Johnathan Freeman - Tito Swing
  • Vanece Thomas - Grace the Bass (1989-1990)
  • Beverly Glenn - Grace the Bass (1991-1994)

1-Hour Special Characters

  • Rachel Miner - Vicki
  • Lloyd Bridges - Mr. Nicholas
  • Ed Begley Jr. - Ned Kincade
  • Bucky Hill - Kit
  • Jack Klugman - Max Okowski
  • Jeannette Charles - The Queen
  • Andrew Sardella - Mickey



Corporation For Public Broadcasting

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Series' segments

  • Flexitoons Puppets & Marionettes - Jukebox Band Concert
  • Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends - narrated by Ringo Starr & George Carlin
  • Occasionally an episode might have a cartoon/video (usually accompanied by a song) from the picture machine (an old-fashioned arcade film machine), the Anything Tunnel (a tunnel in the station mural), a magic bubble, or if any adult told a story besides Mr. Conductor

Season 2 was delayed because producers needed to find new kids to continue the show's run. The series was famous in North America.

The show ran from (1989-1993) with four 1-hour specials in 1994

Note: Ari Magder is often credited as "Ari D. Magder", but this is incorrect. The Ari Magder on Shining Time Station is actually Ari Joseph Magder. Ari D. Magder is a camera operator who is not related to the actor Ari Magder.


Season One (1989-1990)

  • NOTE: The Thomas stories that have appeared in Season One are named by their original titles.
  1. A Place Unlike Any Other (Thomas Stories: Thomas Gets Tricked and Edward Helps Out)
  2. Does it Bite? (Thomas Stories: Come Out, Henry! and Henry To The Rescue)
  3. And the Band Played Off (Thomas Stories: A Big Day For Thomas and Trouble For Thomas)
  4. Pitching In and Helping Out (Thomas Stories: Thomas Saves The Day and James Learns A Lesson)
  5. Show and Yell (Thomas Stories: Foolish Freight Cars and A Proud Day For James)
  6. Faith, Hope and Anxiety (Thomas Stories: Thomas and the Conductor and Thomas Goes Fishing)
  7. Agree to Disagree (Thomas Stories: Terence the Tractor and Thomas and Bertie's Great Race)
  8. Whistle While You Work (Thomas Stories: Tenders & Turntables and Trouble In The Shed)
  9. Two Old Hands (Thomas Stories: Percy Runs Away and Thomas Comes to Breakfast)
  10. Happy Accidents (Thomas Stories: Henry's Special Coal and The Flying Kipper)
  11. Ring in the Old (Thomas Stories: Toby the Tram Engine and Thomas Breaks the Rules)
  12. Impractical Jokes (Thomas Stories: A Cow On the Line and Old Iron)
  13. Finders Keepers (Thomas Stories: Double Trouble and James In a Mess)
  14. Just Wild About Harry's Workshop (Thomas Stories: Duck Takes Charge and Percy Proves a Point)
  15. Promises, Promises (Thomas Stories: Better Late than Never and Pop Goes the Diesel)
  16. Words Out (Thomas Stories: Diesel's Devious Deed and A Close Shave For Duck)
  17. Too Many Cooks (Thomas Stories: Gordon Takes a Dip and Down the Mine)
  18. Mapping It Out (Thomas Stories: The Runaway and Percy Takes the Plunge)
  19. Things That Go Ga-Hooga! in the Night (Thomas Stories: Percy's Ghostly Trick and Woolly Bear)
  20. Is This the End? (Thomas Stories: Saved From Scrap and A New Friend For Thomas)

Season Two (1991-1992)

  • NOTE: The Thomas stories that have appeared in Season Two and Three are named by their US titles.
  1. Scare Dares (Thomas Stories: Percy's Ghostly Trick and Thomas, Percy, & the Dragon)
  2. Oh, What a Tangled Web (Thomas Stories: Diesel's Devious Deed and No Joke For James)
  3. The Magic is Believing (Thomas Stories: Old Iron and Edward's Exploit)
  4. Win, Lose, or Draw (Thomas Stories: Double Trouble and Gordon and the Famous Visitor)
  5. Sweet and Sour (Thomas Stories: Donald & Douglas and The Deputation) Available now On VHS
  6. Achoo! (Thomas Stories: Trust Thomas and Whistles and Sneezes)
  7. A Dog's Life (Thomas Stories: James in a Mess and The Trouble With Mud)
  8. Field Day (Thomas Stories: Percy Proves a Point and Thomas and Bertie's Great Race)
  9. Wrong Track (Thomas Stories: Thomas Saves the Day and Down The Mine)
  10. Washout (Thomas Stories: Bertie's Chase and Percy's Promise)
  11. Crackpot (Thomas Stories: Woolly Bear and Henry's Forest)
  12. Yabba, Yabba, Yabba! (Thomas Stories: Pop Goes the Diesel and Diesel Does it Again)
  13. Nickel in a Pickle (Thomas Stories: Thomas Comes to Breakfast and Thomas Gets Bumped)
  14. Stop the Press (Thomas Stories: Percy and the Signal and A Big Day for Thomas)
  15. He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not (Thomas Story: Thomas, Percy, & the Mail Train)
  16. Double Trouble (Thomas Stories: The Diseasel and Donald's Duck)
  17. Is Anybody There? (Thomas Stories: Thomas Goes Fishing and A Scarf for Percy)
  18. Do I Hear? (Thomas Stories: Mavis and Toby's Tightrope)
  19. Jingle, Jingle, Jingle (Thomas Stories: Time for Trouble and Trouble for Thomas)
  20. All's Fair (Thomas Story: Edward, Trevor, & the Really Useful Party)

    Season Three (1993-1994)

  21. Becky Makes a Wish (Thomas Story: All At Sea) Available Now On VHS
  22. Schemer Alone (Thomas Story: Percy, James, & The Fruitful Day) Available Now On VHS
  23. Bully for Mr. Conductor (Thomas Story: Bulgy) Available on VHS
  24. Stacy Cleans Up (Thomas Story: James Goes Buzz Buzz) Available Now On VHS
  25. Schemer's Robot (Thomas Stories: Tenders & Turntables and Trouble In The Shed)
  26. Billy Saves The Day (Thomas Story: A New Friend For Thomas)
  27. Billy's Party (Thomas Story: Thomas & Percy's Mountain Adventure) Available on VHS
  28. Fortune Teller Schemer (Thomas Stories: Thomas and the Conductor and A Cow on the Line)
  29. Billy's Runaway Train (Thomas Stories: A Close Shave For Duck and The Runaway)
  30. Schemer Goes Camping (Thomas Story: Percy Takes a Plunge)
  31. Mr. Conductor's Evil Twin (Thomas Story: Heroes) Available Now On VHS
  32. Bad Luck Day at Shining Time Station (Thomas Story: Gordon Takes a Dip)
  33. Mr. Conductor's 4th of July (Thomas Story: Escape)
  34. Stacy Forgets Her Name (Thomas Story: Thomas Gets Tricked)
  35. Schemer's Special Club (Thomas Story: Oliver Owns Up) Available Now On VHS
  36. Mr. Conductor's Movie (Thomas Story: Tender Engines)
  37. The Joke's on Schemer (Thomas Story: Wrong Road)
  38. Dance Crazy (Thomas Story: Percy Runs Away)
  39. Mysterious Stranger (Thomas Stories: Come Out, Henry! and Henry to the Rescue)
  40. Dan's Big Race (Thomas Stories: Henry's Special Coal and The Flying Kipper)
  41. Mr. Conductor Gets Left Out (Thomas Story: One Good Turn)
  42. Mr. Conductor's Big Sleepwalk (Thomas Story: Better Late Than Never)
  43. The Mayor Runs for Re-Election (Thomas Stories: James Learns a Lesson and Foolish Freight Cars)
  44. Stacy Says No! (Thomas Story: Duck Takes Charge)
  45. How the Station Got Its Name (Thomas Stories: Toby the Tram Engine and Thomas Breaks the Rules)


    1. 'Tis A Gift (Television: Thomas Stories: Terence the Tractor and Thomas' Christmas Party) (Video: Thomas Stories: Thomas' Christmas Party and Thomas And the Missing Christmas Tree) (Available on VHS)
    2. Schemer Presents: The World According to Me (No Thomas Stories) (Available on VHS)

    TV specials (1995-1996)

    1. Once Upon a Time (Thomas Stories: Rusty To The Rescue and Thomas & Stepney)
    2. Second Chances (Thomas Stories: Granpuff and Sleeping Beauty)
    3. One of the Family (Thomas Stories: Toad Stands By and Thomas & The Special Letter)
    4. Queen For a Day (Thomas Stories: Thomas Meets The Queen and Special Attraction)

    Mr. Conductor's Thomas Tales (1997-1998)


    Paint the Town Red

    • Thomas Stories:
      • Come Out, Henry!
      • Fish
      • Whistles and Sneezes
      • Henry and the Elephant
      • Bulldog
    • Song: Let's Have a Race

    Splish, Splash, Splosh!

    • Thomas Stories:
      • Passengers & Polish
      • Gallant Old Engine
      • Bertie's Chase
      • Peter Sam and the Refreshment Lady
      • You Can't Win
    • Song: Gone Fishing

    Missing Whistles

    • Thomas Stories:
      • Bulls Eyes
      • Train Stops Play
      • Percy's Ghostly Trick
      • Thomas, Percy, & the Dragon
      • Special Funnel
    • Song: Really Useful Engine


    • Thomas Stories:
      • Four Little Engines
      • Trouble for Thomas
      • Toad Stands By
      • Thomas Saves the Day
      • Rusty Helps Peter Sam
    • Song: Toby

    For the Birds

    • Thomas Stories:
      • A Bad Day for Sir Handel
      • Steam Roller
      • Old Iron
      • Double Trouble
      • Bowled Out
    • Song: Don't Judge a Book by Its Cover

    Wish You Were Here

    • Thomas Stories:
      • Thomas Percy and the Mail Train
      • Mind That Bike
      • Rock 'n' Roll
      • Home at Last
      • Thomas and the Special Letter
    • Song: The Island Song


    These are the home video releases of Shining Time Station. All of them are on VHS.

    • Tis a Gift (Christmas Special)
    • Sweet and Sour
    • Stacy Cleans Up
    • Schemer Alone
    • Bully for Mr. Conductor
    • Becky Makes a Wish
    • Billy's Party
    • Mr. Conductor's Evil Twin
    • Schemer's Special Club
    • A Day In The Life Of The Jukebox Band. (video only)
    • Jukebox Lullaby (video only)
    • Jukebox Rainy Day Singsongs (video only)
    • Jukebox Rise and Shine Singsongs (video only)
    • Jukebox Sleeptime Singsongs (video only)
    • Jukebox Birthday Party Singsongs (video only)

    Thomas & Friends Lionel Trains


    In 1989 when Shining Time Station was to begin, Thomas was a success in USA and The Lionel Train Company who made big scale 1 trains made several sets. These trains are 43mm gauge which is the closest commercially available to the ones used for filming (When the TV shows started Gauge 1 (37mm) models based on Marklin mechanisms were used) The original Gauge 1 (G scale) sets are becoming collectable particullarly original 1993 sets with the play mat and yellow track. In 1994 James the Red Engine with Troublesome Trucks followed in G scale. A re-release of Thomas in G followed in 2000, using sets made outwith the US. These later sets are distinguishable by the brown railway sleepers and interchangeable couplings (bachmann style included). In total 3 sets were offered between 1993 and 2001-

    • Thomas with Annie and Clarabel
    • James with the Troublesome trucks
    • Deluxe Thomas with Annie and Clarabel- playmat and figures

    Staring in 1999 Lionel has produced several O scale models of The Thomas the Tank Engine characters and several starter sets.

    Starter sets:

    1999-2000 Thomas with Annie and Clarabel and Harold on Flatbed with 3-D Station house on playboard

    2000 Thomas with Annie and Clarabel Circus with animals and 3-D tent on playboard

    Individual Items from 1999:

    • Percy The Saddle Tank Engine
    • Troublesome Trucks 1 and 2

    A G-Scale Thomas The Tank Engine set was offered again starting in 2001

    In 2004 Lionel made a new version of the Thomas O-gauge starter set. This set featured a Lionel exclusive of that three extra faces were included so the operator could change Thomas expression and the eyes in the front move from side to side.

    In 2005 the Troublesome Trucks #1 and 2 were re-released this time with darker faces and a Tidmouth milk car and Sodor mining Co. car of American styling were released. These items were released either as separate items or as part of an expansion pack.

    Late 2005 brought about the rerelease of Percy with three separate faces.

    2006 brought about a second expansion pack which contains:

    • A flatcar with Harold the Helicopter on it
    • A Sodor Gondola car with a load of canasters
    • A S.C. Ruffey model
    • A Sodor Bobber caboose
    • and four straight pieces of Fasttrack

    2006 brought the planned release of James with three different faces for the O-gauge market.

    2007 brings the release of a Sir Topham hatt flagman crossing & Devious Diesel with 3 different faces for the O-Gauge Market.

    (Originally Mavis was featured in Lionel's 2007 catalog before the switch to Diesel. Reasons for the change are unknown.)


    United States

    • PBS (1989-1998)
    • Fox Family (1998-1999)
    • Nick Jr. (Nickelodeon) (2000)
    • Noggin (2001-2005)


    • YTV (1990-1998/99)
    • TVO (1997-2000)
    • Treehouse TV (2000-present)


    • TV3 (1999-present)


    • Shining Time is seen in the movie Thomas and the Magic Railroad. Didi Conn plays Stacy again, but Tom Jackson's role as Billy was handed over to Russell Means. The new Mr. Conductor is played by Alec Baldwin.
    • While Shining Time was in production David Mitton and Robert D. Cardona were working on Thomas's sister series TUGS
    • In the episode "Washout", when the Thomas story "Bertie's Chase" is shown, the first scene (Edward waiting for Thomas) is omitted. This scene is also omitted from the James In A Mess Random House Read to Me book. But in the Mr. Conductor's Thomas Tales episode "Splish, Splash, Splosh" the episode is in full length.
    • All of the Shining Time Station episodes only ever have three sets: the main room of the station, the workshop, and the interior of the station's jukebox, where the Jukebox Band resided. This changed in the specials, in which scenes took place outside, in the signal house, and in a large basement-type room that may or may not be part of the station building.
    • In Mayor Flopdinger's first appearance ("Too Many Cooks") and in the Christmas special, he is the mayor of East Shemp. However, in all subsequent appearances, the writers treated him as the mayor of Shining Time so he could be in more episodes. East Shemp and Shining Time must be two different towns because they needed a train make a delivery to East Shemp
    • Matt and Dan are cousins, as are Tanya and Kara. Therefore, Stacy must have at least two siblings, and Harry must have at least two children.
    • Mr. Conductor has a name tag on his uniform in the TV Specials.
    • In the episode "Does it Bite?", Mr. Conductor describes himself to be 18 inches tall, but on screen, he appears to be significantly shorter. In the TV special, he describes himself to be "about a pencil and a half, in my stocking feet."
    • The train seen in both the opening and closing credits is a real engine known as the Union Pacific 844.
    • In the opening, Shining Time is listed as having a population of "5,006 give or take". Coincidentally, those same words appear on the Shining Time welcome sign in Thomas and the Magic Railroad.
    • Many places on the Indian Valley Railroad besides Shining Time are never seen, but are often mentioned. Snarlyville is Shining Time's biggest rival, and its people are known for not being very nice.
    • Other places on the Railroad include Chubby Corners, Dillylick Station, Pelican Falls, Eggyweg, Lucy's Leap, Leaky Park, Doodle Haven, Cloggyville, Fort Farley, Lucky Lake, Twiddly Junction, East Shemp, Turley, Waddley, Mount Careful, Spotsville, Farmer's Dell, Logan Wash, Butter Town, and Indian Valley
    • Joe Raposo served as music director for Shining Time Station before he died. He was replaced by Steve Horelick, who was also the music director for Reading Rainbow.
    • Beginning in season 3 Didi Conn wore a wig as Stacy Jones.
    • Despite popular belief, in the first line of the theme song it's "Reach for the speed" not steam
    • The Rainbow Sun mentioned in the theme song is the name of Billy's train
    • Every single episodes of Thomas and Friends from seasons 1-4 appear at least once during all seasons of Shining Time Station and Mr. Conductor's Thomas Tales

    External links

    Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to:

    The world of Shining Time Station
    view  talk  edit
    TV Series: Shining Time Station
    Series particulars
    How the Station Got Its Name  • Thomas and the Magic Railroad •
    Main Characters

    Harry Cooper • Billy Twofeathers  • Matt Jones • Dan Jones • Tanya Cooper • Kara Cooper • Stacy Jones • Schemer • Becky • Jukebox Puppet Band • Thomas the Tank Engine

    Recurring Characters

    J.B. King • Mayor Flopdinger • Midge Smoot • Ginny • Schemee • Barton Winslow •

    1-Hour Special Characters

    Kit • Max Okowski •


    Island of Sodor  • Shining Time Station

    Significant people and organisations
    Rev. W.V. Awdry (Creator of "Thomas the Tank Engine")Christopher Awdry
    The Britt Allcroft CompanyGullane Entertainment
    Other relevant pages
    Thomas and Friends Portal
    The Railway Stories (audiobooks)Thomas and Friends video releasesShining Time Station
    Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends merchandiseWorkforce:Shining Time Station

    The world of Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends
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    Book series: The Railway Series
    TV Series: Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends
    Series particulars
    List of Railway Series Books
    TV Series Seasons:

    Movie and spin-off releases: Thomas and the Magic RailroadCalling All EnginesOn Site with ThomasThe Great DiscoveryHero of the RailsMisty Island RescueDay of the DieselsBlue Mountain MysteryKing of the Railway

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    Other locations - The Railway SeriesTV Series

    Significant people and organisations
    Rev. W.V. Awdry (series creator)Christopher Awdry
    The Britt Allcroft CompanyGullane EntertainmentHIT Entertainment
    Other relevant pages
    Thomas and Friends Portal
    The Railway Stories (audiobooks)Thomas and Friends video releasesShining Time Station
    Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends merchandise
    TUGS (redirects to TUGS at Ship Spotting World)
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    Fan Fiction Character Glossary

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