Depot Day planned in Ardmore to celebrate new Depot Park

Updated: May. 12, 2022 at 9:59 PM CDT
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ARDMORE, Okla. (KXII) - After years of work Ardmore’s Depot Park is finally open and the Ardmore Main Street Authority is inviting the whole city out to celebrate.

A few years ago the area at the corner of Main Street and Caddo was nothing but gravel and building debris.

But the Main Street Authority had a vision of turning it into a staple of the cities downtown and the perfect welcome area for Amtrak passengers.

“It wasn’t very pretty, it wasn’t very appealing to be our downtown area,” said public relations director Trish Maher.

The process was long and difficult but after several years depot park was completed and filled with amenities to attract visitors.

“They’ve put in all of these beautiful grassy areas where you can come and play frisbee, you can come and hangout or read a book,” said Maher. “The benches, the tables, the wonderful annex that’s back here that has all the picknick tables in there.”

Beyond being aesthetically pleasing, the park pays homage to the city’s history.

Specifically the 1915 east end wagon yard explosion which decimated downtown and killed 43 people which is symbolized by the parks train engine.

“This was the engine that brought all of the doctors and nurses into town to help get help to all these injured people,” said Maher.

To celebrate the completion of the park the main street authority is inviting the community out on Saturday the 21st for the inaugural depot day.

“There will be all kinds of fun,” said Maher. “Food trucks, bounce houses, the usual suspects face painters, balloon artists, were going to have games. Corn hole, giant Jenga, all kinds of games.”

There will also be musical guests and a ribbon cutting ceremony featuring city officials and Chickasaw Governor Bill Anoatubby.

The event begins at 11 a.m. and the main street authority hopes that it will be the first of many.

“Our hope in the future is that we’ll expand every year,” said Maher. “Ultimately we’ll go from this park to central park so we have our anchor on both ends of main street and we can bring in all the businesses.”

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