As we’ve reported celebrations in downtown Ogden and at the Golden Spike Historic Park are expecting to see thousands but another, smaller celebration will be taking place in Heber City.
Friday May 10th marks the Sesquicentennial anniversary of the completion of the transcontinental railroad in Utah. Heber Valley Railroad’s executive director Mark Nelson explains why they’re celebrating the event in Heber City.
“There are thousands and thousands of train fans in Utah from all over the place,” Nelson explained. “In fact, on Saturday the 11th we have 500 people from the National Railroad Historic Society that have chartered a train. We're going to have every car we have taking them on a big ride. So, there are lots of people here. We also wanted to celebrate this because we're the only historic railroad in Utah. You can't take a ride in Ogden, you can't take a ride of Promontory, this is the only place you can actually ride on 100-year-old train. So, we wanted to have the celebration.”
Festivities on the 10th begin at 5:30 at the Heber Valley Railroad Depot with a variety of activities stretching until 11:00 pm.
“We’re really excited,” Nelson said. “We have some period costume people who are going to be here between 5:30 and 6:30. Including an old heritage ballroom dance group that will be in the big skirts and everything. They’re going to do some dancing here, on the platform.”
Part of the celebration will also include an old western gunfight performed by the railroad’s own Salt Water Bunch.
“Lots of places and opportunities to take pictures,” Nelson continued. “Inexpensive train ride $10, we’ll have some of our local history buffs on board to answer questions. When we get back big party, bonfire, fireworks across the parking lot. A dance under the pavilion here. We’re just going to whoop it up and have a lot of fun.”
Nelson says the event is also a good warmup for the railroad as they plan their 120th anniversary celebration on September 21st. You can find more information about the Heber Valley Railroad’s Golden Spike Party here.