The end of 2018 marks a turning point for public transportation in North Texas.

A 27-mile commuter rail is connecting downtown Fort Worth with DFW Airport, with 9 stops in between, starting on Saturday. Trinity Metro’s TEXRail will extend from downtown, across northeast Tarrant County, through North Richland Hills, Grapevine, and into DFW International Airport’s Terminal B.

The last day of the year was the first ride of TEXRail. An inaugural ride was held, and golden tickets were passed out to selected invited guests.

Joan Stewart got on board Monday with her husband of 65 years. The train is her favorite way to travel and reminded her of her childhood.

"My parents would put us on the train at night and ride from one little town to the other," Stewart said. "And they would drive along the highway in the car and pick us up at the other town."

Decades later, the trains are newer and fancier, but her love of the rails hasn’t changed.

About 8,000 people are expected to take TEXRail daily in the first year. Free rides will be available from Jan. 5 to Jan. 31.