ARDMORE, Okla. (KTEN) — Ardmore was founded in 1887. This weekend, people are coming together to celebrate the city's future and its history over the last 136 years at the Depot Days event.

"From everything I can determine, Hardy Murphy was the first person I can remember to have the first birthday party for Ardmore," said Wesley Hull director of the Greater Southwest Historical Museum. "Until he died, he was in charge of hosting a birthday party every year."

The AMSA is continuing that tradition with a full-day event in Depot Park this Saturday.

"We want to bring back the birthday celebration... increase awareness of downtown, Depot Park, the history of downtown, economic vitality," Hoage said.

The Ardmore train station is at the heart of the Depot Days birthday celebration.


In 1887, the Gulf, Colorado, and Santa Fe Railway line was completed; the railroads made the city a shipping and trading center, and helped accelerate development downtown.

The City of Ardmore had to rebuild after multiple disasters in its early days.

"A train car explosion happened in 1915, but Ardmore was resilient and built back from the 1895 fire and 1915 fire," said Greater Southwest Historical Museum director Wesley Hull. "That says a lot about the City of Ardmore, and now you can see what we have downtown today because of what they built back during those days."

Saturday's event will kick off with the cutting of Ardmore's eight-foot-long birthday cake, and activities will continue until 8 p.m. 

'We have over 40 vendors lined up to show their products, dunk tanks, train rides, cornhole tournament," said AMSA director Allison Meredith.

Information about Ardmore's 2023 Depot Days event.