Spike 150 Events & Activities | Spike 150
Spike 150 Events Spike 150 Events
05.10.19 – 05.12.09

Sesquicentennial Celebration
at Promontory Summit

Come Party Like It’s 1869!

150 years ago, a group of dignitaries gathered on a dusty rise not far from the shore of the Great Salt Lake to witness a spike made of solid gold be driven into a laurel-wood railroad tie with a silver hammer. The Transcontinental Railroad was born, linking the United States from shore to shore and heralding America as a bold, innovative and forward-looking world leader.

As home to the site where Central Pacific and Union Pacific crews ended their race to connect east and west, Utah is honored and excited to host the Transcontinental Railroad’s 150th birthday party at the Golden Spike National Historic Site May 10th through 12th, 2019. And you’re invited! Additional May 10 Tickets on sale April 1st.

Schedule & Highlights         PURCHASE Tickets For May 11 and May 12

Frequently Asked Questions

All-aboard the AgeWise Express
05-02-2019 - 05-02-2019

All-aboard the AgeWise Express

Weber County Organization for Elderly (WCOFE)

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USU - Spike 150 Lecture Series - Utah State University Brigham City Region
05-02-2019 - 05-02-2019

USU - Spike 150 Lecture Series - Utah State University Brigham City Region

Utah State University

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Golden Spike Sesquicentennial Opening Ceremonies
05-04-2019 - 05-04-2019

Golden Spike Sesquicentennial Opening Ceremonies

Box Elder County

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Golden Spike Sesquicentennial Opening Ceremonies Hoedown
05-04-2019 - 05-04-2019

Golden Spike Sesquicentennial Opening Ceremonies Hoedown

Box Elder County

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Mark Hopkins Railroad Display
05-06-2019 - 05-06-2019

Mark Hopkins Railroad Display

Box Elder County

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Chinese Migrants and the Transcontinental Railroad
05-07-2019 - 05-07-2019

Chinese Migrants and the Transcontinental Railroad

Weber State University Special Collections

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The Dance and the Railroad by David Henry Hwang
05-06-2019 - 05-07-2019

The Dance and the Railroad by David Henry Hwang

Salt Lake Acting Company

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Working on the Railroad: Chinese Workers & America’s First Transcontinental Line | Gordon H. Chang
05-08-2019 - 05-08-2019

Working on the Railroad: Chinese Workers & America’s First Transcontinental Line | Gordon H. Chang

Utah Museum of Fine Arts

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America's Railroad: A Choral Concert
05-08-2019 - 05-08-2019

America's Railroad: A Choral Concert

Waterford School

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The Crossing: Box Elder's Golden Treasure
05-07-2019 - 05-09-2019

The Crossing: Box Elder's Golden Treasure

Old Barn Community Theatre

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“Gold Mountain” - a new musical presented by Zions Bank in partnership with Spike 150, CRWDA, and Ogden Musical Theatre
05-08-2019 - 05-09-2019

“Gold Mountain” - a new musical presented by Zions Bank in partnership with Spike 150, CRWDA, and Ogden Musical Theatre

Golden Spike 150

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FamilySearch Chinese Genealogy Workshop
05-09-2019 - 05-09-2019

FamilySearch Chinese Genealogy Workshop

FamilySearch Center

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Rails and Ales:
05-10-2019 - 05-10-2019

Rails and Ales: "Hell on Wheels"

Weber State University Special Collections

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2019 Tanner Gift of Music with Brian Stokes Mitchell and Megan Hilty
05-10-2019 - 05-10-2019

2019 Tanner Gift of Music with Brian Stokes Mitchell and Megan Hilty

The Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square

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Train Day
05-10-2019 - 05-10-2019

Train Day

This is the Place Heritage Park

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The Tabernacle Choir & Utah Symphony: Tanner Gift of Music
05-10-2019 - 05-10-2019

The Tabernacle Choir & Utah Symphony: Tanner Gift of Music

The Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square, Utah Symphony, and O.C. Tanner

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May 10th Celebration Ceremony Broadcast
05-10-2019 - 05-10-2019

May 10th Celebration Ceremony Broadcast

Golden Spike 150

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We want the Railroad: Brigham Young's Role in Bringing the Railroad to Utah
05-11-2019 - 05-11-2019

We want the Railroad: Brigham Young's Role in Bringing the Railroad to Utah

National Society of the Sons of Utah Pioneers

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Heritage Festival 150th Edition
05-09-2019 - 05-11-2019

Heritage Festival 150th Edition

Ogden Downtown Alliance

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2019 Golden Spike Conference
05-08-2019 - 05-11-2019

2019 Golden Spike Conference

Chinese Railroad Workers Descendants Association

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Ogden FamilySearch Discovery
05-06-2019 - 05-11-2019

Ogden FamilySearch Discovery

FamilySearch Center

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Spike 150 Open House at the Great Basin Museum
05-06-2019 - 05-11-2019

Spike 150 Open House at the Great Basin Museum

West Millard's Great Basin Museum

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National Stagecoach and Freight Wagon Association 12th Annual Conference
05-08-2019 - 05-11-2019

National Stagecoach and Freight Wagon Association 12th Annual Conference

National Stagecoach and Freight Wagon Association

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Corinne The Gentile City: Corinne Historical Pageant
05-09-2019 - 05-11-2019

Corinne The Gentile City: Corinne Historical Pageant

Corinne Historical Society

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Southern Pacific Historical & Technical Society - Union Pacific Historical Society Convention
05-08-2019 - 05-11-2019

Southern Pacific Historical & Technical Society - Union Pacific Historical Society Convention

Ogden Eccles Conference Center

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FamilySearch Discovery
05-06-2019 - 05-11-2019

FamilySearch Discovery

FamilySearch Center

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“Gold Mountain” - a new musical presented by Zions Bank in partnership with Spike 150, CRWDA, and Ogden Musical Theatre
05-10-2019 - 05-11-2019

“Gold Mountain” - a new musical presented by Zions Bank in partnership with Spike 150, CRWDA, and Ogden Musical Theatre

Golden Spike 150

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The Black Irish Band - Live at the Golden Spike 150
05-10-2019 - 05-12-2019

The Black Irish Band - Live at the Golden Spike 150

Golden Spike 150

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Spike 150 Sesquicentennial Celebration Festival
05-10-2019 - 05-12-2019

Spike 150 Sesquicentennial Celebration Festival

Golden Spike 150

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The Chinese Helped Build the Railroad --- The Railroad Helped Build America
05-01-2019 - 05-31-2019

The Chinese Helped Build the Railroad --- The Railroad Helped Build America

Chinese Railroad Workers Descendants Association

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Spike 50: Golden Spike Parade in 1919
05-01-2019 - 05-31-2019

Spike 50: Golden Spike Parade in 1919

Weber State University

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Treasures! Start to Finish: Pacific Railroad Act (1862) and the Last Spikes at Promontory (1869)
05-04-2019 - 06-25-2019

Treasures! Start to Finish: Pacific Railroad Act (1862) and the Last Spikes at Promontory (1869)

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“Move Over, Sir!” Women Working on the Railroad
05-02-2019 - 06-26-2019

“Move Over, Sir!” Women Working on the Railroad

Utah Cultural Celebration Center

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All Set for the West: Railroads and the National Parks
05-02-2019 - 06-26-2019

All Set for the West: Railroads and the National Parks

Utah Cultural Celebration Center

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Spike 150 Celebration: A Contemporary Art Exhibition of Historic Helper City and the Railroad
05-03-2019 - 08-02-2019

Spike 150 Celebration: A Contemporary Art Exhibition of Historic Helper City and the Railroad

The Helper Project

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Western Mining & Railroad Museum Presents The Power of Rail - A Journey into the History of Helper
05-10-2019 - 08-19-2019

Western Mining & Railroad Museum Presents The Power of Rail - A Journey into the History of Helper

Western Mining and Railroad Museum

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Sesquicentennial Celebration Ceremony – May 10th

The centerpiece of 150th anniversary celebration will take place on a purpose-built stage framed by the Golden Spike Site’s two historical steam engines, the Jupiter and #119. The ceremony features remarks by dignitaries, a keynote address by Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Jon Meacham and the world premiere of As One, a sweeping musical-theater reimagining of the 1869 Golden Spike event.

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These celebratory events honor our shared history and inspire us that great things are possible with vision, hard work, ingenuity, dedication and collaboration.”

 

-Doug Foxley
Co-Chair, Spike 150 Commission

 

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Spike 150 Schedule* at Promontory Summit

Schedule for May 10, 2019
8:00 AM

Golden Spike National Historic Site Opens to the Public

8:15 AM

Jupiter and #119 Replica Steam Engines Arrive

11:00 AM - 1:30 PM

Sesquicentennial Celebration Ceremony, Keynote Address & As One Performance

1:30 - 7:00 PM

Spike 150 Festival:

Music, Performances, Storytelling, Historical Reenactments, Train Demonstrations, Frontier Village, Innovation Summit, Reenactments, and Steam Train Demonstrations

Schedule for May 11, 2019
9:00 AM- 7:00 PM

Spike 150 Celebration Festival:

Music, Performances, Storytelling, Historical Reenactments, Train Demonstrations, Frontier Village, Innovation Summit, Reenactments, and Steam Train Demonstrations

Schedule for May 12, 2019
9:00 AM - 3:00 PM

Spike 150 Celebration Festival:

Music, Performances, Storytelling, Historical Reenactments, Train Demonstrations, Frontier Village, Innovation Summit, Reenactments, and Steam Train Demonstrations

*Schedule subject to change.

Highlights include:

 

Remarks by Dignitaries

  • Railroad Worker Legacy Representatives
  • U.S. Congress
  • National Park Service
  • State of Utah
  • Western Governors’ Association
  • Union Pacific Railroad

 

Keynote Address

Jon MeachamRenowned presidential scholar Jon Meacham will share his historical perspective on the importance of the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad. Meacham is a Pulitzer Prize-winning author, contributing writer to The New York Times Book Review and contributing editor at TIME. His most recent book, The Soul of America, was named one of the best books of 2018 by NPR, The Christian Science Monitor, and Southern Living. While the American story has not always—or even often—been heroic, we have been sustained by a belief in progress even in the gloomiest of times, Meacham notes. In his inspiring book, Meacham reassures us, “The good news is that we have come through such darkness before – as, time and again, Lincoln’s better angels have found a way to prevail.”

 

World Premiere of As One

Children ChoirThis stirring new musical inspired by the Golden Spike era includes five original compositions and performances. As One is written and directed by the all-star team of award-winning composer, producer and songwriter Stephen Nelson; lyricist and vocalist Anjanette Mickelsen; and direction and choreography by Jennifer Parker Hohl. Distinguished musician and conductor Craig Jessop is the show’s executive producer.  As One features a chorus and band of more than 250 elementary school students selected from Utah’s 29 counties.

As One will be broadcast live from Promontory Summit to classrooms, homes and watch parties throughout the state, thanks to our broadcast partner KSL Channel 5 and Utah Education Network (UEN).

 

Sesquicentennial Festival Area – May 10th-12th

The three-day Sesquicentennial Festival offers a variety of fun and educational activities for visitors of all ages. Located at the Golden Spike National Historic Site, the Festival also features food vendors and merchants. So, plan a trip to visit the famous steam engines, learn about how the Transcontinental Railroad and late 19th century innovation changed America’s and Utah’s history, immerse yourself in interactive exhibits, and eat, drink and enjoy the day!

 

STEM Innovation Summit

InnovationCompleting the Transcontinental Railroad in 1869 was the “moonshot” of its day. Looking ahead, what audacious goal is possible to accomplish by 2069? Spike 150 has partnered with Hill Air Force Base’s STEM program to inspire the next generation of innovators to explore and think outside the box to create the next revolutionary breakthrough. Visitors can explore rocketry, aviation and drone technology, and learn if they have what it takes to be part of NASA’s planned Mission to Mars. Come celebrate the past and see how to engineer the future.

 

Frontier Camp

Railroad Construction CampMost of the Central Pacific Railroad’s workforce was comprised of Chinese immigrants. Additionally, Irish immigrants, former Civil War soldiers, African-Americans and Mormons contributed to the railroad’s construction. The Frontier Camp explores this narrative through cultural exhibits, demonstrations, storytellers, and discovery of vintage wagons that brought many of the railroad workers across the plains.

 

 

From the 19th Century to Today

A series of interactive exhibits compare 19th century innovation to how we see the world changing around us today. How do the working conditions, wages and treatment of railroad workers in 1869 compare to today? How did the railroad affect Native Americans, women and the environment? Large-scale photographs, augmented reality stations and other hands-on exhibits provide fun and educational opportunities to explore yesterday, today and tomorrow.

 

Food and Merchandise

Food TruckFood trucks and “saloons” with water and soft drinks will offer lunch and snacks for purchase throughout the three-day festival. Commemorative merchandise will be available at the Spike 150 Shop and through Golden Spike National Historic Site.

 

 

Performances

Black Irish BandWe are pleased to include performances from local artists and musicians as part of the festival celebration.  The Black Irish Band and their music of the railroad workers will be one of the performances of the festival.  If you are interested in participating, please submit your information through our performer inquiry form here.

 

Purchase Tickets Now!

The public is welcome and encouraged to join us for the Sesquicentennial Celebration at Promontory Summit. Access to the site is by private car or chartered bus only, with each car requiring a ticket purchased in advance online. The fee per vehicle is $20 on May 10th. On May 11-12 the vehicle fee is $10 per day. There is no additional fee to enter the Golden Spike National Historic Site at Promontory Summit. Tickets must be purchased in advance online. 

Our first block of vehicle tickets for May 10th has sold out. The second block of vehicle tickets will be release on April 1, 2019 at 10 AM (MST). Please sign up for our newsletter to get updates on tickets and celebration activities.

PURCHASE Tickets For May 11 and May 12

Visit our FAQ for more information about tickets, directions, and what to expect.

Expected Attendance for Spike 150

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Volunteer for Spike 150

  • *Please note that a mandatory volunteer training will be held prior to the events above.

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