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Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Kick off the New Year in style

NYE in OKC

For 30 years, Opening Night has been the center of New Year’s Eve fun in Oklahoma City. Put on by the Arts Council of Oklahoma City, Opening Night offers fun for the entire family with performances throughout downtown OKC featuring acts such as The Wise Guys, Edgar Cruz, OKC Improv and more. Trust us, there is absolutely zero chance of a less than stellar New Year’s Eve. Did we mention there’s fun for the whole family? The youngsters are sure to enjoy face painting, an interactive art project, and lively music performances. And the fireworks finale is a show-stopping spectacle that you won't soon forget.

Wristbands are just $8 in advance and you can pick them up at 7-Eleven Stores of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City Museum of Art, MidFirst Bank locations and Plenty Mercantile. You can also get wristbands for $10 at the event.

And don’t worry about grabbing grub before heading downtown – seriously, they’ve thought of everything – the city’s best food trucks will be on-hand to serve up a variety of exciting food. Get your dinner on Finale Alley any time before midnight!

festivals, food, live music, family-friendly
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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And the Oscar goes to

Tower Theatre in Uptown 23rd

In our humble opinion, one of the coolest things about the renovation of the historic Tower Theatre is how the building’s history as a film house has been kept front and center. If you didn’t know, the Tower Theatre originally opened in 1937, and served as the premier movie house in Oklahoma City for almost 40 years. While the renovation of the historic theatre has mainly focused on the facility as a live music venue, you can also catch some of your favorite films there as well. “Home Alone”, “This is Spinal Tap”, “Christmas Vacation” and “Shawshank Redemption” are just a handful of the movies playing between now and the end of the year. The Tower even offers a full bar for movie showings. Check out their schedule to see when your favorite movie is playing.

The Tower Theatre is far from the only unique place to see a movie in Oklahoma City. On the third Friday of each month, the 21c Museum Hotel features a movie screening as part of their Filmography series, a partnership with deadCenter Film and OKC Film Society. These screenings are absolutely free.

Finally, the Oklahoma City Museum of Art has been the metro’s art house cinema for years. Their film program mainly focuses on independent cinema but occasionally sprinkles in films such as “Die Hard” for special holiday screenings. They even offer special ticket packages that include dinner at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art Cafe.

history, live music, museums, nightlife, film, free
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Rockstar

live music in Bricktown

As we talked about a while back, the opening of several new music venues in Oklahoma City has led to a surge in live music in OKC. No matter what kind of music you like, there has never been a better time to be a music fan living in the 4-0-5. If you haven’t checked out any live music lately, what are you waiting for? December is a great month to get started. Lady Gaga and the Trans-Siberian Orchestra are making stops at the Chesapeake Energy Arena. John Moreland and Steve Earle hit the Tower Theatre. If you like your rock a little harder check out some of the acts coming to the Diamond Ballroom this month. We’ve been noticing tickets at a lot of venues seem to be going pretty quickly. If you are poking around looking for a show in December, you might as well look ahead to 2018 while you are at it. You wouldn’t want to miss out on your favorite artist coming through.  

P.S.- Be sure to check out our weekly Things to Do and See post because we always try and highlight great live music in OKC.

concerts, live music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, November 21, 2017

What we’re thankful for

MAPS Whitewater Rapids

Since 2017 was such a big year for our community, and this is the week of giving thanks, we thought we would share some of the things we are thankful for.

  • A River’s Rise: The Oklahoma River continues to be an unexpected gem in the heart of downtown.
  • MAPS 3: The landmark initiative continues to make huge strides as we see more and more projects take shape.
  • The citizens: This year the citizens of OKC approved a $1.2 billion infrastructure investment to improve their community.
  • The Thunder: This year marks a decade of Thundering Up in OKC.
  • Innovation: Oklahoma City took the first steps in creating an innovation district based on the results of a Brookings/Project for Public Spaces study on OKC.
  • Beer: Recent changes in state law have resulted in an explosion of craft breweries in the metro.
  • Live music: The opening of several new venues have brought the live music scene in Oklahoma City to another level.
  • Tinker: This year marked the 75th anniversary of Tinker Air Force Base.
live music, MAPS, Oklahoma River, Thunder, Tinker, beer, community, Innovation District
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Ready for the uptown funk?

Uptown 23 Street Art

Teeming with flavor, color and life, Uptown 23rd is one of the latest neighborhood revitalizations gaining a well-deserved reputation. Uptown 23rd is one of OKC’s oldest retail corridors with historic buildings such as the Gold Dome building, a Buckminister Fuller-inspired geodesic dome on the corner of Classen Avenue and Northwest 23rd Street. The attractions in Uptown are casual, accessible and largely owned by local proprietors.

Must-visit bars and restaurants in the area include Big Truck Tacos, Cheever’s, Pizzeria Gusto, known for their authentic Neapolitan pizza; The Drake, a seafood restaurant served family style; the Pump Bar, a former Texaco station turned bar that serves up drinks in a friendly atmosphere; and the 70s-themed Rockford Cocktail Den. You can also test your detective skills at The Escape OKC, a live-escape game where you have 60 minutes to solve the puzzles of a locked room.

The most recent additions to 23rd’s thriving restaurant and bar scene include the Bunker Club, Scottie’s Deli, UR/BUN and more.

The jewel of 23rd might be the Tower Theatre. Built in 1937, the theatre was one of Oklahoma City’s premier movie houses for nearly four decades but closed in the ‘80s. It was renovated last year and reopened as a live music venue and has attracted popular acts from across the country.  

Whichever district you are visiting, find out even more about what to eat, enjoy or experience there online at the Oklahoma City Convention and Visitors Bureau’s website at www.visitokc.com

concerts, live music, nightlife, restaurants, Uptown 23
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Festive with PlazaFest

Plaza District Festival

Looking for a fun, exciting day out with family or friends? With live music, incredible food and beautiful art, there’s a lot to see and do at the upcoming Plaza District Festival.

Celebrating local arts, culture and the revitalization of OKC’s Plaza District, the Plaza District Festival will feature art from more than 30 Oklahoma-based artists in addition to an all Oklahoma lineup of musicians and performers on three stages. There will also be a kid’s area with activities like face painting, hula hoops and bubbles, and firehouse art activities throughout the festival so your little ones can harness their own creative genius.

The Plaza District is an enclave of locally owned shops, galleries and restaurants and has become a hub for creativity and a magnet for local businesses. It is a popular place for visitors who want to find that unique gift, enjoy a drink and soak in an area that now has a hipster, modern vibe. Grab a cup of coffee at District House, a slice of pizza at Empire or a grilled cheese at the Mule. You can also get a drink at Oak and Ore before heading over to DNA Galleries to buy some clothes or art. How about ending the evening with a performance at Lyric Theatre and then running over to Roxy’s for some ice cream or Pie Junkie for the best pie around. Get the picture? There is something for everyone in the Plaza.

The Plaza District Festival will take place on Saturday, Sept. 30 from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

arts and culture, family-friendly, festivals, food, live music, nightlife, Plaza District, restaurants, theater
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Great State Fair of Oklahoma

Midway at the Fair

Football, cooler weather and the State Fair of Oklahoma means it is fall. If you are new to Oklahoma City then you might be surprised to find out that for many the kickoff of the State Fair of Oklahoma is our official signal that autumn has arrived!  

From Sept. 14-24, State Fair Park in Oklahoma City will be bustling with the Oklahoma State Fair and all that it entails. An annual extravaganza stretching back more than 100 years, the Oklahoma State Fair offers a little something for everyone, from deep-fried culinary delights (sign us up!) to ice-dancing Disney princesses. Read on for our can’t-miss fair favorites.

AGtropolis- The Oklahoma State Fair has its roots in agriculture, and this hands-on learning experience presents Oklahoma’s agricultural history with interactive exhibits and demonstrations throughout the Oklahoma Expo Hall. This event is perfect for kids or adults formerly obsessed with the Little House on the Prairie series.

The JFK Exhibition- New this year is the JFK Exhibition: Experience His Life and Legacy. This is the largest traveling JFK exhibition and displays hundreds of authentic items from his presidency, including one of his presidential limousines.

Disney on Ice- A State Fair mainstay, Disney on Ice is back with Follow Your Heart a fun adventure with all your Disney and Pixar favorites.

Free concerts on the Adventure Road Stage- Gather smack-dab in the middle of the fairgrounds each evening to enjoy jazz, alt rock, country, oldies and R&B. Personally we are ready to break out our moves for Tony! Toni! Tone!

Honestly, we can’t even begin to describe all the cool stuff taking place at this year’s fair. Luckily, the Oklahoma State Fair has its own app. Download it today to help organize your Fair Day.

concerts, family-friendly, kids, live music, State Fair Park
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, July 11, 2017

July in OKC

Have you seen this month’s “What to OKC” video from our colleagues at the OKC CVB? If you have friends/fam coming to visit, or just want to be a tourist in your own town, visitokc.com and these monthly video features are great resources, fam. Get fired up with Dodgers baseball, Disney songs, Energy FC soccer, Rick Springfield, Garth Brooks, a great Kehinde Wiley exhibit at the OKC MOA, Macca, West Side Story and more. Check it out below!

OKC Energy, theater, Visit OKC, arts and culture, attractions, Dodgers, live music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

The Sunday Twilight Concert Series is back

Concert at Myriad Gardens

One of the TBL staff’s favorite things to attend during the summer is the OKC Arts Council’s Sunday Twilight Concerts. These weekly shows at The Great Lawn at Myriad Botanical Gardens are a great chance to relax on your blanket or camp chair, chill out with some picnic staples and listen to some terrific tunes with your fellow Oklahoma Citians. Bring your ears, your own drinks and great attitudes whilst you enjoy the evening (but leave your stinky cigarettes, stinkier pets and even stinkier glass bottles at home). We’ll see you there!

music, Myriad Botanical Gardens, parks, concerts, family-friendly, free, live music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, May 30, 2017

It’s zoo-rific!

Feeding Giraffes

With more than 2,000 animals, you are sure to have a wild time exploring the animal kingdom at the Oklahoma City Zoo & Botanical Garden. Sure, there are exhibits that will keep your kids enthralled with the great outdoors, like the Great EscApe, Cat Forest, Lion Overlook and the Children’s Zoo. But the zoo has plenty of fun for adults, too! Upcoming programming for adults includes the zoo treasure hunt breakfast and stroll on Aug. 5. The Zoo Amphitheatre, which has been serving up live music since 1936, will host a full summer’s worth of concerts, with artists including Collective Soul, Megadeath, Matchbox Twenty and Counting Crows, all playing there this summer.

zoo, Adventure District, concerts, family-friendly, live music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, May 23, 2017

You’re fifteen, Chesapeake Energy Arena

Chesapeake Energy Arena

One of our best-known modern philosophers once admonished, “When you’re fifteen, and somebody tells you they love you, you’re gonna believe them.” In the case of the Chesapeake Arena, there’s no reason to doubt OKC’s genuineness. “Loud City,” the current home of the OKC Thunder and one of the centerpieces of the original set of MAPS projects, is also a great place to see a concert. We recommend taking a deep breath as you walk through the doors of the ‘Peake, because you’re sure to see some concerts that will leave you breathless. In fact, one of the senior boys winked at the arena right off the bat, with the legendary Paul McCartney playing one of the first shows back in 2002 and making our head spin around. The Chesapeake is ready to celebrate its 15th in style, with the former Beatle slated to return July 17, joining Kings of Leon, Lady Gaga, Linkin Park, Iron Maiden and more on the arena’s upcoming concert calendar. Check out more info here, and don’t mind us as we dance around the room when the night ends, when the night ends.

basketball, concerts, live music, MAPS
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Various venues

The Criterion

The ‘Peake isn’t the only place to see a show around here. In addition to a plethora of smaller bar/restaurant venues, a number of schmedium-to-mid-sized live music venues have recently come on line, joining stalwarts like the Zoo Ampitheater, the Diamond Ballroom and indie-focused venues Opolis and 89th Street Collective.

The Criterion – a brand-new building in east Bricktown, this 4,000-capacity venue is across the street from the Steelyard development in a suddenly hot quarter of OKC’s premiere entertainment district. My Morning Jacket, Explosions in the Sky and Lil Wayne have played here recently, with performances by The xx and Jason Isbell on the upcoming calendar, among others.

The Tower Theater – a lot of excitement has surrounded the resurrection of one of the “grand old dames” of OKC’s early movie house scene. The main space has room for 700 standing on the main floor and an additional 264 (seated) in the balcony, and a smaller “studio” space handles 100 standing or 50 seated. The venue’s Studio Series has sold well, with only a few tickets for select shows available.

The Jones Assembly – set to open July 29 with The Wallflowers and Better Than Ezra, this renovated, 100-year-old, 20,000-square-foot space on Film Row (just south of the 21C Museum Hotel) features a 1,600-capacity performance venue as well as a true dining destination. Lake Street Dive and JJ Grey & Mofro have also been announced.

ACM@UCO Performance Lab – this performance space in Bricktown hosts plenty of touring acts in addition to ACM@UCO gigs (which is itself a pretty cool story, speaking of music), seating 200 sitting and 500 standing. The Lab has hosted Dr. Dog, Sean Lennon, Okkervil River and Ben Taylor recently.

Adventure District, Bricktown, concerts, Film Row, live music, Uptown 23, zoo
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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The Music Men (and Women)

Flaming Lips Alley

You may know from reading The Better Life in the past that OKC has a pretty cool and unique history when it comes to jazz. And you might know that OKC is the home of the fabulous freaks, the Flaming Lips (who even have an alley in Bricktown named after them). But you may not know that OKC’s also “ground zero” of sorts for folks like Color Me Badd (formed in OKC, the four met while attending Northwest Classen High School), Garth Brooks (country megastar from Yukon), Mason Williams (graduated from Northwest Classen as well), Neal Schon (Journey founding member and lead guitarist, born on Tinker Air Force Base), and Hinder (formed in OKC in 2004), to name a few. And, in addition to Flaming Lips Alley, OKC also boasts streets named Wanda Jackson Way, Charlie Christian Boulevard, and Vince Gill Avenue to honor those hometown heroes. We’re certainly proud of our musical heritage!

live music, music, Oklahoma City history
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Celebrate the arts

Festival of the Arts

Henry David Thoreau once said, “This world is but a canvas to our imagination.” For the past 50 years, the Festival of the Arts has brought imagination to our own backyard as one of the largest and most successful arts festivals in the country. With hundreds of world-renowned artists from across the country, the Festival of the Arts is a must see event bringing imagination to life.

Here are just a few things you should know about the Festival of the Arts:

  • You have six days to enjoy the fun as the festival is April 25-30 at Bicentennial Park, situated between the Civic Center Music Hall and City Hall. Admission is free and hands-on activities in the Children’s Art Field is just $2.
  • More than 450 artists applied and submitted work for the Festival jury process. The 144 chosen artists are some of the nation’s finest, featuring a wide array of art from oils, water, drawing and printmaking to photography, ceramics, glass, sculpture and more.
  • At the Festival of the Arts, art isn’t just what you look at, it’s what you eat too. From appetizers to desserts, the Festival brings 31 vendors to the International Food Row and throughout the grounds. Each food vendor is partnered with a local arts organization, so each bite you take supports the arts in central Oklahoma.
  • Art is also a performance. Nearly 300 entertainers will be donating their performances on three stages throughout the Festival to the 750,000 Festival attendees.

Whether you’re imagining buying a painting that you love, jamming out at a free concert or eating a piece of art you enjoy, the Festival of the Arts will bring your imagination, and your taste buds, to life.

arts and culture, downtown, family-friendly, festivals, food, free, live music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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HefnerFest

Lake Hefner Lighthouse

Beautiful sunsets, a 10-mile trail and iconic lighthouse in the middle of the state make Lake Hefner a must see travel destination for visitors and residents alike. Instead of simply driving by this iconic lake again on Lake Hefner Parkway, why not stop by for a fun-filled day?

Hefner Fest is a free event for people of all ages taking place April 22 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Experience all that Lake Hefner has to offer with free sailing experiences, stand up paddle board rentals, kayak rentals, tailgate games and so much more. Hefner Fest will also feature live music, food trucks and a beer garden.

Most people see Lake Hefner as a great place to take a stroll or ride your bike but Lake Hefner also offers all kinds of water sports fun. In fact, plans were just released to enhance the historic Lake Hefner Boathouse to help increase the amount of activity on the lake.

After the event, take a stroll along the 10 mile trail that surrounds the lake or stop by one of the many restaurants along Lake Hefner’s waterfront to enjoy a beautiful sunset that only Lake Hefner can provide. Lake Hefner is more than just that pretty lake next to the highway, so be sure to stop by and experience all that it has to offer. 

beer, cycling, food, Lake Hefner, live music, restaurants, running, water sports
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, March 14, 2017

St. Patrick’s Day

St. Patrick\'s Day Celebration

Remember in elementary school when St. Patrick’s Day was that holiday where you would pinch people if they didn’t wear green? Well, it’s a lot more than that in OKC (although, the pinching is still very important, too).

Join in on the St. Patrick’s Day fun by heading to the Myriad Gardens on March 17 to learn about Irish heritage with music and fun crafts for kids. Or, head to Bricktown for the St. Patrick’s Day Block Party, where you can enjoy live music, great food and even a few surprises.

Feel like going to Midtown instead? Then head to McNellie’s for their annual St. Patrick’s Day Party for food, drinks and music. If you want to make a difference this St. Patrick’s Day, consider participating in the 7th Annual Run Lucky 5k on March 12. All proceeds benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

Midtown, Myriad Botanical Gardens, running, Bricktown, holiday, live music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Opening Night

NYE in OKC

Each new year is a time of reflection and resolutions. But first, you have to ring in the year in style. Are you still looking for that perfect place to welcome 2017? Well, we’ve got you covered. OKC is hopping with so many exciting events on NYE that it may be hard to choose just one.

Do you love music, dancing, theater or fireworks? If so, you certainly won’t want to miss Opening Night, one of OKC’s premier New Year’s Eve parties. Put on by the Arts Council of Oklahoma City, Opening Night offers fun for the entire family with performances throughout downtown OKC featuring acts such as Jabee, L.T.Z., Moetowne Alex and the Nightview Band, OKC Improv, Ali Harter, Michael King, Yung Tray, Susan Herndon, Sativa Prophets, Kinsey Charles, and more. Trust us, there is absolutely zero chance of a less than stellar New Year’s Eve. Did we mention there’s fun for the whole family? The youngsters are sure to enjoy face painting, an interactive art project, and lively music performances. And the fireworks finale is a show-stopping spectacle that you won't soon forget.

Wristbands are just $8 in advance and you can pick them up at 7-Eleven Stores of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City Museum of Art and MidFirst Bank locations. You can also get wristbands for $10 at the event.

And don’t worry about grabbing grub before heading downtown – seriously, they’ve thought of everything – the city’s best food trucks will be on-hand to serve up a variety of exciting food. Get your dinner on Finale Alley any time before midnight!

family-friendly, festivals, live music, music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Go West

Are you looking for a little adventure just outside OKC? Head west for exciting, hands-on family fun.  We’ll start our tour just west of OKC in Yukon.

Get up close and personal with majestic Clydesdale horses at the Express Clydesdales Ranch in Yukon. Take a free tour of the working ranch and learn about these magnificent purebred horses. Not only do these beauties meet thousands of visitors each year at home, but they travel across North America as ambassadors for Express Employment Professionals and help raise money for the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and other charities. Each year, the Clydesdales are invited to take part in some of the world’s most famous parades like Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, The Tournament of Roses Parade and the Kentucky Derby Pegasus Parade, just to name a few. While you’re in Yukon, Czech out the historic Czech Hall, which is a on the National Register of Historic Places. Since 1925, the hall has hosted Czech dances each Saturday night, complete with a live band. Fun, family-friendly community events are also held throughout the year at the Kirkpatrick Family Farm, one of the oldest pieces of continually owned family real estate in Oklahoma.

Oklahoma City’s newest professional soccer team, Rayo OKC, also plays at Miller Stadium at Yukon High School. Catch their last home game of the season on Oct. 30.

day-trip, free, history, live music, Yukon
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Fun for everyone!

State Fair Rides

Hold on to your hat, break out your walking shoes, and get ready for one of our favorite can’t-miss events of the year – the Oklahoma State Fair kicks off this Thursday. The 11-day event will continue through Sept. 25 at the Oklahoma State Fairgrounds and offers something for everyone, from bacon-covered, deep-fried treats to karate kids and street outlaws.

Action? Did someone say action? Well, expect nothing less from the Oklahoma State Fair. Enjoy the thrills of extreme bull riding or one of the tremendous shows featuring the world's largest traveling collection of raptors, the high-flying stunts of the Zoppe’ Italian Family Circus and even a fire-eating magician. Your little princess (or prince for that matter) is sure to enjoy the stories of Buzz Lightyear, Tow Mater, Elsa and Anna as Disney on Ice presents “Worlds of Enchantment.

For those who prefer something on the tamer side, check out the petting zoo and pony trail ride, the kids creation station, Swifty Swine Pig Races, Farmyard Follies or simply take a stroll down Clydesdale Alley. To get a feel for what it was like in the olden days, check out the chuck wagon cookin’ or goat’s milk soap making demonstrations. The antique tractor exhibit and auto show are sure to be an auto lovers paradise.

Don’t miss the Adventure Road Entertainment Stage or the Bandshell Stage to enjoy free concerts each evening from jazz, blues, hip hop, rock, country and Christian bands. You might even catch classical dancers, choirs, or magicians while you’re at it.

Get all of the details on hours, admission and special discount days here. A complete schedule of events is available here.

food, live music, State Fair Park, concerts, family-friendly, festivals
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Rock on OKC!

OKC is home to some of the coolest music venues around. But don’t take our word for it. Take a quick trip around the city on any night and you’re sure to find awesome live music at more than one venue.

From the Criterion– one of the city’s newest music and entertainment venues – to Chesapeake Energy Arena ssome of the biggest names in music bring their fun and lively shows to our great city throughout the year. But there are also plenty of more intimate venues who host cool shows all over town. Don’t forget about spots like XIIIX Lounge (formerly Kamps 1310 Lounge), 89th Street Collective, The Blue Note, Opolis, Blue Door, the Diamond Ballroom, the Chevy Bricktown Events Center, the ACM@UCO Performance Lab and more.

Prefer concerts of the outdoor variety? Check out the Sunday Twilight Concert Seriesat the Oklahoma City Museum of Art. From classic rock and pop to jazz, salsa and big band – they’ve got it all covered. Several of the city’s districts also feature live music as part of their monthly event. Check out LIVE on the Plaza, First Friday Gallery Walk in the Paseo Arts District, or Shop Hop in Automobile Alley. The city’s food truck parks also feature a variety of live music.

festivals, live music, music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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A piece of OKC history

For 80 years, OKC’s  Zoo Amphitheater has been a local favorite for musicians and music lovers, but the venue has a storied history. It was constructed from native red sandstone in the mid-1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps, an organization formed under President Franklin Roosevelt’s Works Projects Administration, to carry out public works projects during the Great Depression.

Between 1933 and 1936, approximately 400 men lived in tents and wooden barracks in the area while they laid the groundwork for Lincoln Park, the Oklahoma City Zoo and the Zoo Amphitheatre. “The Circus of 21 Death-Defying Acts” was the first performance to be held at the amphitheater. During its early years, the Zoo Amphitheatre hosted circus extravaganzas, pageants, theatrical performances, concerts and public meetings.

The 1960s saw the site fall into disrepair due to non-use. But in the 1970s, the site was resurrected and the Amphitheater has been hosting some of the greatest acts in the entertainment business ever since. Some of the performers who have graced the stage here include the Grateful Dead, Sting, Dire Straits, Santana, Judas Priest, Willie Nelson, Marvin Gaye, Joni Mitchell, Heart, Lynyrd Skynyrd and Oklahoma’s own The Flaming Lips.

Over the years, more than 1 million fans have visited the Zoo Amphitheatre, many with blankets and lawn chairs in tow to place on the venue’s native rock terracing. Check out the lineup of upcoming shows here.

Save

Save

zoo, Adventure District, live music, music, Oklahoma City history
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Get jazzy

Guitar Player

For the third year, the OKC Jazz Festival is back to celebrate Oklahoma City’s jazz heritage and its contribution to the music industry with jazz, rock, hip hop and R&B performers starting today through June 4 in Bricktown and the historic Deep Deuce district.

Local and national artists will perform on both indoor and outdoor stages during the five-day festival, and festival headliners Jarreau, Color Me Badd and The Gap Band will perform at the new Criterion Music Hall located in the Bricktown Entertainment District. One of the highlights of the festival is the homecoming of Color Me Badd as part of their 25th Anniversary National Tour.  Formed in Oklahoma City in 1991, Color Me Badd is an American contemporary R&B group that has sold more than 12 million records worldwide.

View the complete schedule and purchase tickets at www.okcjazzfest.com.

Deep Deuce, festivals, live music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

The sweet sound of music

Live Music

If learning about Oklahoma history teaches us anything, it’s that we are certainly an adventurous group. So it’s probably no surprise that numerous Oklahomans have tried their hand in a variety of fields including expanding their musical prowess. In fact, some of today’s chart-topping songs were written by Oklahomans.

Check out some amazing talents of local and national songwriters and get your creative juices flowing during the Oklahoma Songwriters Festival in downtown OKC April 28-30.

Hob nob with accomplished songwriters from Nashville, Los Angeles and Oklahoma (as well and music executives and industry leaders) during free daytime workshops. Hear from the pros on topics such as Music Biz 101 and how to write a hit song. Sign up here.

Don’t miss the songwriter showcases held in the evenings during the festival. Thursday’s showcase will feature local favorites including Kierston White, Michael Fracasso and Beau Jennings. Saturday’s session will give attendees an opportunity to witness some of today’s hottest songwriters in "writer in the round" style performances. Seriously, these guys have worked with everyone from Ozzy Osbourne and Aerosmith to Carrie Underwood and Toby Keith and every genre in between. Regardless of your musical preference, we guarantee that you have jammed along to their magnificent work. Purchase tickets for the evening events here.

festivals, live music, music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, April 12, 2016

OKC’s Rite of Spring

Festival of the Arts

From discovering new artists to experiencing global flavors, Arts Council of Oklahoma City’s Festival of the Arts has been Oklahoma City’s rite of spring for 50 years. And the 50th annual Festival of the Arts, April 19-24, promises to continue this rich tradition in its new location at Bicentennial Park located in front of Civic Center Music Hall.

The event runs from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. Every year Festival of the Arts attracts up to 750,000 people over six days. Free admission, amazing art, fantastic food, exciting entertainment and fun activities are all in store for visitors to enjoy at this year’s Festival.

Visual Arts
The Festival features 200 artists from 41 states, including several artists representing the rich culture and talent of Oklahoma.

Culinary Arts
Take a break from the visual and performing arts to enjoy all the fine food that Festival of the Arts has to offer. International Food Row features old favorites like Indian Tacos, Strawberries Newport, Craig & Carter’s Famous Fish Tacos and C’est Si Bon. New additions to this year’s International Food Row include Meat Market Refectory, The Saucee Sicilian, Crepe Brewers and I Don’t Know & I Don’t Care. Each food vendor is partnered with a local arts-related nonprofit agency, so each bite goes to support the arts in central Oklahoma.

Performing Arts
Festival of the Arts has three stages of non-stop performing arts entertainment ranging in scope from the youngest elementary school performers to professional musicians.

Art for Children
Festival of the Arts will include many great activities for children and families. Shop from Festival’s youngest artists at the Youth Art Sale where youth ages 8 to 18 present their own artwork for sale. Young at Art Mart is a special no-adults-allowed section where children can purchase art created by their favorite Festival artists for $5 or less. Children can create their own unique work of art in the Children's Art Field. Face painting for $1 will be available.

All proceeds from the Festival support Arts Council Oklahoma City’s year-round, free and low-cost programming. Another unique way to support this effort is by attending the Angels and Friends Party. It boasts entertainment, fare from OKC’s best restaurants, an open bar and a chance to celebrate the arts and the coming of spring with OKC’s most devout arts supporters.

live music, music, arts and culture, family-friendly, festivals, food
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, April 5, 2016

The Criterion

From Grammy-winning psychedelic rockers to country music superstars and Jazz pioneers, Oklahoma City has a diverse and impressive music history (read more about that here). The OKC music scene got even better this month as The Criterion opened up for its first show. Oklahoma native Ben Rector had the honors of being the first concert in the new ballroom.

Located in East Bricktown, The Criterion can hold up to 4,000 concert goers and has formed a partnership with world-renowned entertainment company Live Nation to help book shows.

That partnership is paying off as a diverse group of well-known acts are already scheduled to play the ballroom in its opening months. Rock band My Morning Jacket, singer-song writer Sturgill Simpson, Grammy-nominated duo Disclosure and comedian Brian Regan are just a sample of the already announced concerts. Check out the full list here and grab your tickets. They are going fast.

Bricktown, concerts, live music, music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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SchmoozaPalooza

SchmoozaPalooza

Are the hairs on your arms starting to stand up in excitement? That can only mean one thing! Oklahoma City’s most fun networking event, SchmoozaPalooza, is tonight! We know this is a lot of exclamation points, but that is just the kind of fun there is to be had at Schmooza.

Doors will open at 4 p.m. today and the rocking good times will go onto until 7 p.m., at the Oklahoma Expo Hall at State Fair Park. A $10 admission, which includes a drink ticket, will give you a preview of the latest products and services (which means free stuff!) from Chamber member exhibitors while enjoying live music, networking activities, food tastings from more than 20 restaurants and caterers and door prizes (scroll down at the link to see our wonderful exhibitors).

We know you are already sold but just in case we haven’t tickled you fancy enough there is also a theme: western wear. That is right, bust out your cowboy hat, boots and rhinestones and we will see you tonight.

food, live music, networking
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Jazz Nights

Deep Deuce neighborhood

The Deep Deuce neighborhood near Downtown has deep connections to jazz history and culture (as we wrote about here). To celebrate that heritage the district recently started Jazz Nights in Deep Deuce. Held every Tuesday from 7 to 10 p.m., local restaurants, bars and shops offer special deals and live jazz music. Yes, live music and scoring a bargain. We couldn’t think of a greater way to get to know the area.

Deep Deuce, live music, restaurants
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Block party in b-town

Irish flag (220399586)

No silent alarm here – we’re sounding the laudatory bell for the Bricktown St. Patrick’s Day Block Party. Conveniently, the 27th annual event starts at 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 12, so after the O’City parade, check out loads of live music, imbibe some green beer (as well as some awesome naturally-colored local craft beer!) and have some tasty eats from area food trucks right there at Reno and Oklahoma Avenue. The party lasts until midnight, so there’s plenty of time to enjoy that day ‘o the year when everyone’s Irish.

Performers:
3 p.m. – Rocky Kanaga
4 p.m. – Empire Grey
5 p.m. – Denver Duncan
6 p.m. – Bowlsey
7 p.m. – Squad Live
9 p.m. – Josh Sallee
10 p.m. – My So-Called Band

More info: http://www.bricktownokc.com/

holiday, live music, nightlife, beer, Bricktown, food
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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A St. Paddy’s garden party

St Patrick's Day

You won’t want to get ejected from the Myriad Botanical Gardens on Thursday, March 17 (which, weekend celebrations aside, is actually St. Patrick’s Day), as the Great Event Lawn and Band Shell will be full of myriad opportunities to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. In addition to craft activities for the kids, there will be shows by the Oklahoma Academy of Irish Dance Performance, Celtic folk band Three Ravens, and bag piping by Oklahoma Scottish Pipes and Drums. You can even get a lesson in Irish step dancing with instructor Chelsea Baron, and then show off your new-found skills afterward by dancing on the Water Stage with the Three Ravens. Cushlamachree! The MBG draws a lot of water in this town, and for good reason, so get out there and go mingle Irish-style with the many other interested parties.

Get more info at http://oklahomacitybotanicalgardens.com/events/st-patricks-day-at-the-gardens/.

Myriad Botanical Gardens, family-friendly, kids, live music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Edmond/Arcadia

POPs

Edmond is Oklahoma City’s neighbor to the north and one of Oklahoma’s largest cities, but its location (15.2 miles from downtown and 22.6 miles from Tinker Air Force Base) allows it to be a popular suburb for people who work all across the Oklahoma City area. And thousands of students at Oklahoma Christian University and the University of Central Oklahoma call Edmond home during their academic careers. Even if you don’t live in the area, don’t miss out on all that Edmond has to offer visitors.

If you’re still in the mood for music, enjoy some soul music at the University of Central Oklahoma’s Jazz Lab. Each week, the Jazz Lab features live entertainment, and visitors can order food and drinks from Hideaway Pizza next door. During the week, across the street, you can learn about Edmond’s history at the Edmond Historical Society and Museum.

Want to spend time outdoors? Edmond offers ways to do that, too, especially with several parks. Arcadia Lake offers trails for bicycling, motorcycles and hiking/running, boat rentals and horseback riding, among other things. Edmond has a range of other parks, as well, but two big ones with lots of trails are Mitch Park and Hafer Park. In warmer weather, you can check out two water parks: The Edmond Y Water Park and Pelican Bay Aquatic Center.

Also in far north Edmond is another architectural marvel, the Armstrong Auditorium. It is a luxury venue that hosts premier concerts and performing arts, ranging from the Russian National Ballet to classical, jazz or even bluegrass music, depending on the season.

Further north and east of Edmond, the community of Arcadia will allow you to get your kicks on Route 66 here, starting with POPS, a restaurant and gas station celebrating the original interstate highway – U.S. Route 66 – and all its history as the “Main Street of America” or the “Mother Road.” You can’t miss POPS because of the 66-foot-tall soda bottle and straw that at night lights up in a dazzling show of different colors. POPS is part future, with a bold architectural design, and part past.

Just down the road from POPS is another can’t-miss landmark, the Arcadia Round Barn, which is literally a round red barn that was built in 1898 and restored in 1992. It was used as a barn for livestock and hay storage and for dances around the turn-of-the-century, and today the 45-foot-tall barn again hosts community events.

Edmond, live music, museums, outdoor recreation, parks, restaurants, Route 66, water sports, Arcadia, college, day-trip
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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