Throwback Thursday: Save the Depot

One of Bowling Green’s most significant landmarks needs help. Throwback Thursday has been here several times. Many viewers have probably attended events or taken tours of the museum and railcars, but the RailPark could be closing its doors in the next couple of years. It’s time to save the Depot.

The L&N Railroad is one of the biggest reasons why Bowling Green grew into the city it is today. In the 1850s, L&N scouts considered taking the railroad through Glasgow or Bowling Green. Thanks to the citizens of Bowling Green for pulling their resources, the city won the railroad. Then construction of both U.S. Highway 31 and I-65 followed the railway line, thus making Bowling Green a direct stop on the golden highways.

The city’s economy boomed and the needs for education and jobs grew. Though the Depot burned a couple times during the Civil War, the 1921 version of the Depot shows its Art Deco grandeur. The nearly 100-year-old building takes much maintenance through the harsh conditions Kentucky weather brings.

As plans for a potential new “Railroads Go to War” exhibit are put together for a Fall 2019 unveiling, the RailPark is rolling out a Save the Depot campaign. It’s a nod to the exhibit and grassroots Rockwell-style propaganda. Aimed at capturing the Depot’s nostalgia, the goal is to bring the community together like a WWII machine.

Hosting events like Romance at the RailPark, Brunch with the Bunny, Haunted Lantern Tours, and the famous Polar Express, the Depot is a staple. The railcars are decades old and weren’t built for standstill tours. These endearing events and activities are in danger of shutdown if maintenance costs run too high.

Visit the museum and see the models for the “Railroads Go to War” exhibit created by WKU Graphic Design students. Watch the RailPark’s social media and continued coverage to find out how to save the Depot.