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Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Mapping our way to the future

Chesapeake Energy Arena

The OKC Streetcar is set to begin normal operations in December. The new, state of the art convention center is due to open doors in 2020. We stand in an era of unprecedented growth, but new residents may not know how the decisions of Oklahoma City voters led us to this path.

Our remarkable productivity today was born after Oklahoma City experienced an energy downturn in the late ‘70s and ‘80s. Hungry for a way to boost economic development and reinvestment, Oklahoma City Mayor Ronald Norick proposed the Metropolitan Area Projects, a capital improvement program to be funded by a temporary one-cent sales tax. MAPS was comprised of the following projects:

  • Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark - Finished in 1998, the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark was the first major project of MAPS and served as the first testament to Oklahoma City’s renaissance and its close ties to the past.
  • Improvements to the State Fairgrounds – The State Fairgrounds received a new livestock show facility, horse barns, and several other necessary renovations by this project’s completion in 1998.
  • Creation of the Bricktown Canal – Completed in 1999 and improved in 2003 and 2004, the Bricktown Canal served as the first bridge to take back Bricktown from years of vacancy and crime. Now, the canal and the district are one of OKC’s main attractions.
  • Creation of the Myriad (now Cox) Convention Center – Home to countless shows, exhibitions, graduations, and other events, the Cox Convention Center has been a hub for state and nationwide activity since its opening in 1999.
  • Creation of the Spirit Trolley System – Predecessor to Oklahoma City’s growing public transit sector, the Spirit Trolley service began in 1999 and served the city for 11 years.
  • Improvements to the Civic Center Music Hall – Home to the OKC Phil, the Lyric Theatre and others, the Civic Center was renovated in 2001. Stage advancements, a five-story atrium, and acoustic improvements were among other renovations.
  • Creation of the Ford Center (now the Chesapeake Energy Arena) – Constructed in 2002 and considered the beating heart of Oklahoma City, the Chesapeake Energy Center is the home of the OKC Thunder and serves as one of the largest musical venues in the southern United States.
  • Creation of the Oklahoma River Recreational Area – MAPS turned a seven-mile span of the North Canadian River into a series of river lakes for public use. Construction of the dam system, trails, landscaping, and other amenities finished in 2004.
  • Creation of the Ronald J. Norick Downtown Library – The four-story library includes classrooms and a conference center, and is a part of the Metropolitan Library System. It was named for Mayor Norick upon its completion in 2004, marking the end of MAPS.

The first Metropolitan Area Projects differentiated from other improvements programs by funding projects debt free. As a result, MAPS and its successor programs, MAPS For Kids and MAPS 3, are model success stories that have spurred faster – and more fiscally responsible – investments than most cities throughout the U.S.

MAPS was a simple idea with a big impact, and it speaks as a testament to the ideals of Oklahoma City residents. When faced with crisis, we reinvent; when faced with a cause, we give; when faced with a quandary, we climb our way out. The Yes to MAPS campaign slogan in 1994 was “Believe in Our Future!”, and it seems like Oklahoma City residents believe more now than they ever have.

You can find out more about the history of MAPS, including interviews from prominent figures in OKC, at the City of Oklahoma City MAPS site here.

library, MAPS, Oklahoma River, State Fair Park, baseball, Bricktown
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, July 10, 2018

The Library Ė A School, a Stage, a Home

Its ideation came in 1889, in the early meetings of the Philomathea Club, a women’s study group. Set out to improve community culture and education, members raised funds to establish Oklahoma City’s first public library, which found its first home in an unused room in the Commercial Club, now the Chamber of Commerce. This fledgling institution grew to become Oklahoma City’s Metropolitan Library System, and, nearly 130 years following, operates wide and proud. Now incorporating 19 locations spanning across the greater OKC area, the Metropolitan Library System provides a plethora of resources, programs, and events to its citizens year-round.

The Metro Library System contains online and physical databases spanning far in subject, from auto engine repair to health & wellness, or from job preparedness to simple homework help. It also offers programs on GED preparation, adult education, and even how to become a US citizen. The Metro website provides book lists covering multiple topics, and also features an eBook collection titled “Indie Oklahoma”, which is fueled by the Self-e program, where young authors can submit works.

One of our favorite things about the Metropolitan Library System is its constant list of events occurring throughout all the locations, all the time. The Northwest Library hosts “Teen Time” every Monday evening, featuring varying activities. Nicoma Park and Harrah libraries are each hosting a “Spy School” in July, designed for younger children to learn if they have what it takes to be a spy. Also in July, Southern Oaks and Harrah libraries will host “OKC Zoo: Animal Acoustics-The Remix!” where kids can come learn about the musical styles animals are fond of.

The highlight of the Metropolitan Library System’s events is the Neighborhood Arts programs, where, every June and July, the Metro Library hosts performances of family-friendly music, theatre, and comedy. This year, Neighborhood Arts features four performing acts, appearing at various locations: Rhythmically Speaking, an educational theatre troupe, will present a moral story about a dinosaur egg; Sugar-Free Allstars, a musical duo, will perform their signature family funk; Adam & Kizzie, another musical pair, will show audiences just how many different ways you can rock out; and OKC Improv, a comedic acting group, will encourage audience involvement in their fun and games. You can find out more about these performances here.

People often forget about the library: it is often not so flashy, popular, or exciting compared to other institutions of learning. Neither is it a school, nor a stage, nor a home, but it can be all of these things still. What it is, assuredly, is a place for you and your family to grow with the community around you. Whatever you’re trying to accomplish, be it fixing your old lawn mower or putting a smile on your child’s face again, there’s going to be something waiting for you at your local library.

library, family-friendly, free
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Let a library card open a door

Dowtown OKC Library

There is an old saying that goes: “There is no problem a library card can’t solve.” Once you start to take advantage of all the great resources Oklahoma City’s amazing library system provides, that statement will ring pretty true.

The Metropolitan Library System serves more than 600,000 people through 19 locations in Oklahoma County. To get a card, you just have to live in Oklahoma County. And if your county is Cleveland, McClain, or Pottawatomie and you are part of the Pioneer Library System, you can still join in the Metropolitan Library System’s fun – our Oklahoma City-area libraries have a reciprocal service agreement with the Pioneer Library System, headquartered in Norman.

In addition to books, the library allows its members to check out and download eBooks (including indie and self-published works), audiobooks, magazines and music.  You can even stream video and other content from services like hoopla, Kanopy and more. The library also gives members access to online learning resources for kids and adults, with popular resources like Lynda.com and Mango Languages available at no cost. You may be able to even apply online to start downloading immediately. There are virtually no limits to the things you can learn and do as a card-carrying member of the library. Find a library near you.

education, family-friendly, free, library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Books, yoga and more

Kids coloring

The Metropolitan Library System has a long list of activities for those who want to connect with real people in the real world. Whether you want to join a book club, pursue a hobby like tai chi or art, get healthy with exercise classes or attend a story hour with your kids, you can find something that interests you at a nearby library. Check out the events calendar and sign up for one.

family-friendly, free, library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Ch. 1

Ralph Ellison

The first chapter in many renowned authors’ biographies takes place in Oklahoma City. Get to know your new hometown by reading the works of some of its more wordy residents.

  • Ralph Ellison, author of the 1953 National Book Award winner “Invisible Man” and Presidential Medal of Freedom honoree (1969), grew up in Oklahoma City. You can see a sculpture of him at the Oklahoma City library that bears his name or see a portrait of him at the Oklahoma State Capitol. Read more by checking out some of the books by and about him from the Metropolitan Library System.
  • Award-winning mystery writer Carolyn Hart grew up in Oklahoma City and has written 58 books, and most recently published “Ghost on the Case” in October 2017. Her standalone novel “Letter From Home,” which is set in Oklahoma, won the Agatha for Best Mystery Novel of 2003 and was a New York Times notable book that year.
  • Oklahoma City native and resident Lou Berney has written three critically-acclaimed, award-winning novels. One novel, “The Long and Faraway Gone,” is a mystery based in Oklahoma City and has won multiple awards including the 2016 Edgar Award for Best Paperback Original.
  • Oklahoma City native Gena Showalter, a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, writes young adult romance novels often featuring paranormal creatures.
  • Chef Rick Bayless grew up in Oklahoma City (his family’s business was the barbecue restaurant called Hickory House) and now operates Frontera Grill in Chicago. He has written several cookbooks featuring the Mexican cuisine for which he is known. His brother, Skip Bayless, is a sportswriter and columnist and a television commentator for Fox Sports.
library, Oklahoma City history
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, March 28, 2017

MAPS

Chesapeake Energy Arena

MAPS stands for Metropolitan Area Projects and actually began 24 years ago in December of 1993 with MAPS I, thought to be the first large scale, public-facility enhancement project of its kind in the nation. The original MAPS project was funded by a temporary one-cent sales tax that lasted for 66 months, raising $309 million for MAPS I projects.

The original MAPS projects included iconic OKC facilities such as the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark, Bricktown Canal, Cox Convention Center, Chesapeake Energy Arena and the Ronald J. Norick Downtown Library.

These landmark, iconic OKC facilities are so part of our daily lives today, that sometimes it is good to take a trip down memory lane and remember how it all began.

baseball, Bricktown, library, MAPS, Oklahoma City history
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Overview of the Metropolitan Library System

Downtown Library

Here in Oklahoma City we have an amazing library system that allows easy access to your favorite titles so you can keep your brain sharp and your imagination running free.

The Metropolitan Library System serves more than 600,000 people throughout 19 locations in Oklahoma County. Yes, you can go to use free Wi-Fi in any of its locations, but why would you go for that reason when you can enjoy such a great collection of books and other activities? The library system is also digital with eBook and music downloading services.

To get a card you just have to live in Oklahoma County. And if your county is Cleveland, McClain, or Pottawatomie and you are part of the Pioneer Library System, you can still join in the Metropolitan Library System’s fun – our Oklahoma City-area libraries have a reciprocal service agreement with the Pioneer Library System, with its headquarters in Norman.

In addition to the books, the eBooks, the Wi-Fi and the music, the Metropolitan Library System has a long list of activities for those who want to connect with real people in the real world. Whether you want to join a book club or pursue a hobby like tai chi or art, you can find something that interests you at a nearby library. Check out the events calendar and sign up for one.

There are virtually no limits to the things you can learn as a card-carrying member of the library.
Find a library near you.

family-friendly, free, library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



How to get a library card

books on a shelf

If you live or own property in Oklahoma City or Oklahoma County, you can become part of the Metropolitan Library system for free by applying for a card. Here’s how it works: Bring two forms of ID (one showing proof of residence) to your nearest library and apply for a card. If you’re older than 17 and you live in the area, you can get a primary card for free. If you are younger, you can apply for a card with your parent or guardian. Teachers and students who live outside the library system’s area but whose school is located inside it can get a school card, while those who live in Cleveland, McClain or Pottawatomie counties and are part of the Pioneer Library System) can apply for a reciprocal card. Nonresidents also can pay a $40 annual fee.

Confused about all the choices? You shouldn’t be. Your local librarian will help you sort through the options and get you signed up quickly.

Once you have a card, you can check out or download books, music, movies and more.
Find out more.

library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Famous Oklahoma authors

Ralph Ellison

While you’re at the library, check out books by some well-known Oklahoma City authors, including:

  • Ralph Ellison, author of the 1953 National Book Award winner “Invisible Man” and Presidential Medal of Freedom honoree (1969), grew up in Oklahoma City. You can see a sculpture of him at the Oklahoma City library that bears his name or see a portrait of him at the Oklahoma State Capitol.  Read more by checking out some of the books by him and about him from the Metropolitan Library System. Or learn even more about this distinguished author who was born in 1914 (or maybe 1913, depending on the source you use) online at these sites:
  • Award-winning mystery writer Carolyn Hart grew up in Oklahoma City and has written 56 books, according to her website, http://www.carolynhart.com.  The latest book in her popular Death on Demand Mysteries series, “Don’t Go Home,” was released in May.

  • Oklahoma City native and resident Lou Berney has written three critically-acclaimed, award-winning novels and his latest The Long and Faraway Gone, is mystery based in Oklahoma City. The novel was recently nominated by the Mystery Writers of America as a “Best Paperback Novel”. It has also been featured on the Today’s Show as the perfect summer read and an Amazon Best Book.

  • Oklahoma City native Gena Showalter, a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, writes young adult romance novels often featuring paranormal creatures. The latest in her White Rabbit Chronicles, “A Mad Zombie Party,” was released in late 2015.

  • Chef Rick Bayless grew up in Oklahoma City (his family’s business was the barbecue restaurant called Hickory House) and now operates Frontera Grill in Chicago. He has written several cookbooks featuring the Mexican cuisine for which he is known. His brother, Skip Bayless, is a sportswriter and columnist and a television commentator for ESPN’s “First Take.”
library, Oklahoma City history
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Friends of the Library Book sale

Friends of the Library Book Sale

If you prefer to own books or just enjoy sifting through mountains of books, magazines, videos, etc., the Metropolitan Library System in Oklahoma City has a solution for that, too: The Friends of the Library Annual Book Sale.

Each year, more than 600,000 books are for sale, making it one of the largest in the nation. Admission is free. This year’s Book Sale will be from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 20, and Sunday, Feb. 21, in the Oklahoma Expo Hall at the State Fairgrounds. If you are a Friends of the Library member, you can shop early – at the members-only pre-sale event from 5:30 to 9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 19.

If you want to even more time around the books (and what reader wouldn’t?), then volunteer.

free, library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The root of Oklahoma Cityís forward momentum

Kayakers on the Oklahoma River

While we’re on the subject of elections, let’s talk about one of the most important elections in Oklahoma City’s recent history – the one that changed everything and led to the city’s current, ongoing transformation. If you have visited the Oklahoma River or seen the U.S. Olympic training programs for both canoe/kayak and rowing programs there or attended an OKC Dodgers game in Bricktown, you’ve enjoyed some of the results of that election more than 20 years ago.

Informally and most commonly known as MAPS, the first election for Metropolitan Area Projects happened on Dec. 14, 1993. Then, voters approved a five-year, one-cent sales tax to build or upgrade nine community facilities – projects that are now known as the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark (construction), Cox Convention Center (renovation), State Fair Park (improvements), the Bricktown Canal (construction), Ronald J. Norick Downtown Library (construction), Chesapeake Energy Arena (construction), the Oklahoma River (transformation into a popular recreation area with rowing, kayaking and more), Civic Center Music Hall (rebuilding) and new trolleys.

The initiative was so successful and popular that voters have since approved similar limited-term MAPS sales taxes three more times. MAPS for Kids funded school improvements and renovations and MAPS 3, which passed in 2009 is currently underway.

All projects have been built debt free, and each sales tax has had a term limit.

Since MAPS passed in 1993, Oklahoma City has seen more than $5 billion in new public and private investment throughout the city. But the energy, momentum and pride these projects have added to our city are unmeasurable.

Bricktown, Dodgers, election, library, MAPS, Oklahoma River, school
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (1)



Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Get Carded at the Library

Hey, how about reading something other than the back of the shampoo bottle for a change? If you feel like you don’t know your volcanoes, vivisection, or Vietnam War (among other topics) like you should, the Metropolitan Library System has you covered. If you live or own property in Oklahoma City or Oklahoma County, just bring two forms of ID (one showing proof of residence) to your nearest library and get hooked up like a tow truck with your very own library card. But if your county is Cleveland, McClain, or Pottawatomie, you still oughttocomeandsee– the Metropolitan Library System has a reciprocal service agreement with the Pioneer Library System, HQ’d in Norman. (This means MLS cardholders can do the same at any Pioneer Library). Yes, there are virtually no limits to the things you can learn as a card-carrying member of the library. Lather, rinse, repeat, and then get yourself there!

community, family-friendly, kids, library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



The Library Makes You Better

As fun as it is to “Like” everything that comes across your feed, we all know those captions on your friends’ Instagram photos aren’t making you any smarter (and don’t even get us started with the Facebook, Twitter, or ::gasp:: Snapchat). So if you’re interested in self-improvement or learning something new, what to do?

Well, we’ve got good news for you Curious Carols and Wondering Williams. As a brand-new MLS card holder (congratulations!), you may not be aware that the Metropolitan Library System offers enough activities to choke a camel. From local art to LEGO robotics to live concerts to learning about email and ebooks, your library’s the place to gain knowledge, explore, study, and improve yourself. Check out just some of the activities in which you can participate in the next few weeks:

Chess Club
GED prep
Internet basics
Tai Chi
Concerts
Children reading to dogs
Quilting Club
LEGO Robotics
Movie Night
Book Club
Healthy Pregnancy
Teen Service Team
Adult Education and Literacy Classes
Anime Club
Art Class
Gaming Club
And more!

For a full list of activities and events, just point your way over to metrolibrary.org’s calendar page.

family-friendly, kids, library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Ralph Ellisonís Visible Legacy

(Photo: © United States Postal Service. All rights reserved.)

Ralph Waldo Ellison was born in 1914 (or 1913 – there is some debate on the date). Oklahoma City’s most notable literary figure and the author of Invisible Man, Ellison grew up in the Deep Deuce neighborhood and loved music (jazz as well as classical). He began playing the cornet at age 8, eventually majoring in music at the Tuskegee Institute after graduating from Douglass High School in 1932. But it was a meeting with writer Richard Wright after moving to New York City in 1936 that directed his path toward authorship. He published many reviews, short stories and essays from 1937 to 1944. Invisible Man was published in 1952, winning the 1953 National Book Award. Ellison then traveled and lived abroad (including in Rome) for a few years before returning to the U.S. in 1958 to teach at Bard College. In 1964 he began teaching at Rutgers and Yale before receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1969 and becoming a permanent faculty member at NYU in 1970. He was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1975, and continued teaching and publishing essays, receiving the National Medal of Arts in 1985 and publishing a collection of essays, Going to the Territory, in 1986. He died in 1994.

Oklahoma City’s Ralph Ellison Library was first dedicated in his honor in 1975, and in 2012 artist David Phelps unveiled a sculpture honoring Ellison at the library. As part of its Literary Arts series, the U.S. Postal Service issued a 91-cent stamp honoring him on Feb. 18, 2014, and on March 6, 1914, a portrait of Ellison was hung at the State Capitol on the fourth floor. The Ralph Ellison Foundation was also founded in 2014 to highlight “the accomplishments of the acclaimed author Ralph Waldo Ellison” and to empower “the lives of others through his philosophy, talents, and writings in the areas of Literacy, Music, and the Arts.” You can “check out” many of his works at your local branch of the Metropolitan Library System.

More info on Ralph Ellison:
-Library of Congress
-Interview with The Paris Review (Spring 1955)
-PBS’ American Masters
-Journal Record article on Ralph Ellison Foundation

history, library, Oklahoma City history
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



No Soothsayers Necessary: Sequoyah Voting Begins Soon

Beware the ides of March, kids, because you’ll no longer be able to vote on the Sequoyah Book Awards. While a previous blog post gave some info on these awards, we thought we’d let you know that voting for the different categories will be open soon, from February 1st through March 15th. Children in grades 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12 who have read at least three books from each masterlist can vote on their favorite for the Children’s, Intermediate, and High School Sequoyah Book Awards, respectively. Watch the Oklahoma Library Association site for more info.

kids, library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Take a Look at a Sequoyah Book

First awarded in 1959 and sponsored by the Oklahoma Library Association, the Sequoyah Children’s Book Award is voted on annually by Oklahoma’s schoolchildren in the 3rd-5th grades. The award is named after the Cherokee tribal member who developed the Cherokee writing system adopted by the Cherokee Nation in 1825 and who lived in Oklahoma from 1829 until his death in 1843. In 1988, the Sequoyah Intermediate Book Award was inaugurated (voted on by 6th-8th graders), with the Sequoyah High School Book Award added in 2010 (9th-12th graders). The Donna Norvell Award is voted on by Sequoyah Committee members and is awarded to an “easy reader” book aimed at Pre-K – 2nd graders.

Why are we telling you this? Because it’s a great time to get involved in the Metropolitan Library Association’s Summer Reading Program. Just 20 minutes a day can net you all sorts of great prizes, in addition to all the even greater benefits daily reading provides. Programs for all ages (yes, even you, adults) are ready to rock your reading habit, so sign up today, and get started on those Sequoyah winners!

Sequoyah Book Award Winners for 2014:

  • Children’s – Sidekicks by Dan Santat
  • Intermediate (Young Adult) – Michael Vey: Prisoner of Cell 25 by Richard Paul Evans
  • High School – Divergent by Veronica Roth
  • Easy Reader (winner for 2013) – Pete the Cat: Rocking in My School Shoes by Eric Litwin
family-friendly, kids, library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Libraries Abound

Reading is pretty important. I mean how else would you be consuming this awesome blog? Luckily here in Oklahoma City we have an amazing library system that allows easy access to your favorite titles so you can keep your brain sharp and your imagination running free.

The Metropolitan Library System serves more than 600,000 people throughout 19 locations in Oklahoma County. To get a card you just have to live in Oklahoma County. The library system is also digital with eBook and music downloading services.

No matter where you live in OKC there is bound to be a library just around the corner waiting for you. Find a library near you.

family-friendly, library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Bundled Up

There’s definitely been a chill in the air and if you’re like us, you may be experiencing some cabin fever. Thankfully, there’s no reason to feel all cooped up. No matter the temperature, there are always great things to do and experience in Greater Oklahoma City. Here are just a few suggestions:

Visit a museum.
Warm up inside the Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory.
Check out one of OKC’s great districts, filled with plenty of eating, drinking or shopping options. 
Do a little holiday shopping.
Curl up with a good book.
Catch a movie, in the not-so-usual way.

food, library, Midtown, movies, museums, Myriad Botanical Gardens, parks, shopping, Western Avenue, Adventure District, downtown
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Extra! Extra! Read All About Oklahoma!

While we here at The Better Life tend to spend our time telling you about anything and everything Oklahoma City, we're also pretty big fans of the state of Oklahoma as a whole. And we've got a great source for you to discover more about this great state we call home – Oklahoma Today magazine. For more than 50 years, Oklahoma Today magazine has served as the official magazine of Oklahoma. Published every other month, Oklahoma Today is filled with high quality content on Oklahoma's people, places, travel, culture, food and outdoors. A yearly subscription to this prized publication is just $24.95, but you can also find copies at a variety of locations around town.

community, food, library, arts and culture
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Afterschool Special

The school day ends at around three, but that’s no reason for the learning to stop. Now that ABC no longer offers after-school learning-via-television (with just a hint of morality) for kids, our friends at the Metropolitan Library System offer a number of after-school activities for students of all ages to fill that gap. One of the most popular is the After School @ Your Library program, which allows kids ages 10-16 to work weekly with a professional artist over a six-week period and exercise their creativity on a whole range of art projects, depending on their interest. How cool is that? But if art’s not your kid’s game, there’s still plenty to take in at your local library après- école. Ralph Ellison, Village and Capitol Hill all offer Chess Clubs; Belle Isle has a Gaming Club; Ellison, Belle Isle, Edmond and Southern Oaks offer an Anime Club; Del City sports a Lego Club; and Midwest City offers their popular Mad Scientist program, among others. Keep up with all the after-school goodness by checking out the calendar of events or contacting your local library. And that’s a good afterschool lesson for all of us!

After School @ Your Library Current Schedule (subject to change, be sure to check with your library prior to start of program)

Capitol Hill
Savannah Mitchell
Thursdays, 4-5pm
October 3, 10, 31, November 7, 14, 21

Del City
Savannah Mitchell
Wednesdays, 4-5pm
October 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, November 6

Ralph Ellison
Natasha Corso
Wednesdays, 4:30-5:30pm
October 2, 9, 30, November 6, 13, 20
(skip Oct. 16 & 23 for OKCPS Fall Break)

Southern Oaks
Nathan Lee
Thursdays, 4-5pm
October 3, 10, 31, November 7, 14, 21
(skip Oct. 17 & 24 for OKCPS Fall Break)

Belle Isle
Scott Delsigne
Thursdays, 4-5pm
October 3, 10, 31, November 7, 14, 21
(skip Oct. 17 & 24 for OKCPS Fall Break)

Village Library
Kiona Millirons
Mondays, 4-5pm
October 7, 28, November 4, 11, 18, 25
(skip Oct. 14 & 21 for OKCPS Fall Break)

Almonte
Nathan Lee
Wednesdays, 4-5pm
October 2, 9, 30, November 6, 13, 20
(skip Oct. 16 & 23 for OKCPS Fall Break)

Midwest City
Natasha Corso
Thursdays, 4:30-5:30pm
November 7, 14, 21, December 5, 12, 19

Bethany
Taryn Parker
Wednesdays, 4-5pm
October 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, November 6

Northwest
Kiona Millirons
Wednesdays, 4-5pm
November 6, 13, 20, December 4, 11, 18

family-friendly, kids, library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
Comments (0)



Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Book It, OKC!

Since we’re on the topic of interesting facts about this city we call home, what better time to talk about the great books that are about OKC. There’s a ton of information out there, and we’re lucky to have a number of key experts whose fascination with this city ranks right up there (or maybe even just a smidge above) our own. If you’re looking to find out even more great information on Oklahoma City, its past, present and future, here are a few bound (as in book) suggestions. P.S. Time to get out that library card – the books noted with an * below are available for check-out through the Metropolitan Library System.

Another Hot Oklahoma Night: A Rock and Roll Story*– Discover the role Oklahoma and Oklahomans played in a variety of music styles                                                              
Bricktown* – The history of one of Oklahoma City’s districts
For All Good Sports* – A history of the Oklahoma City All Sports Association
OKC Second Time Around*– A look at the history of downtown Oklahoma City from 1956 to 2006
Oklahoma City Impressions– A book filled with photography and informative captions all about OKC
Operation Scissortail* – A history of the building of the Devon Energy Center and the Project 180 makeover of downtown

Have a favorite book about Oklahoma City? Let us know what it is so we can share it!

library, Project 180
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Time for a Cool Down

Heat seems to have taken over Greater Oklahoma City. From the news to pictures of the seven-day forecast popping up in your social media feeds, it's getting difficult to ignore. And hearing your a/c run non-stop isn't exactly a morale booster. So we have a suggestion – get out of the house. That's right. Get out and do something – and since we doubt you want to fully experience what 100+ feels like, we've been thinking of some indoor activities to help you pass the time.

  1. Check out a museum. Are you an art fanatic? Scientist-in-training? Do you love history? No matter what your interests, Greater Oklahoma City's vast choice of museums makes it easy to find just what you're looking for. And to help you narrow it down, our buddies over at the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber have a list of museums that we think is tops.
  2. Visit one of OKC's spraygrounds. Get the kids, throw on your suits (and plenty of sunscreen) and head to one of these interactive water play parks to get a break from the heat.
  3. Curl up with a good book. If you've been hanging around the blog long, you have probably caught onto to the fact that we love the library – specifically the Metropolitan Library System. All those books just waiting there to be checked out . . . for free! And they have so many great activities for kids and adults. What's not to love?

What's your favorite way to cool down? Let us know so we can tell other OKC'ers!

family-friendly, library, museums, outdoor recreation
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Itís Summertime and the Reading is Easy

Summer doesn't have to be a time for kids to collect cobwebs in their noggins. Help your kids stay on track this summer by keeping their minds full of knowledge and their imaginations going strong with the Summer at the Library reading program. The Metropolitan Library System puts on this annual program for kids of all ages, giving them achievable goals to reach and rewarding them with prizes for their accomplishments. The program kicked off on June 1 and will run until July 31. Head on over to one of Metropolitan Library's 18 locations across Greater Oklahoma City and get your kids signed up today!

Early Childhood – kids birth through preschool
Children – kids kindergarten through 6th grade
Teens – teens grades 7th through 12th

family-friendly, library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Book It to the Library

Selected your summer reading yet? The Metropolitan Library System is a terrific resource, boasting 17 libraries conveniently spread throughout Oklahoma County. All you need is a library card to dive into its inviting world of books, but the Metro Library System offers much more: book clubs, summer movies, musical performances, storytime for children and community forums. Just check out the library system’s online calendar of events for more info.

family-friendly, library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Friday, May 27, 2011

Dust off your Scrabble dictionary

Know any words that start with Q but don’t need a U? Line up your letter tiles and join Scrabble enthusiasts of all skill levels at the Ralph Ellison Library from 2 until 4 for Scrabble Club on the first Saturday of each month.

family-friendly, library
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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