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Tuesday, August 21, 2018

The Code of the West

Gunfight at the O.K. Corrall poster

Later this month, the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum will launch The Code of the West- Western Movie Matinees film series. The series will run every Wednesday from Aug. 29 – Sept. 19 at 1 p.m.

The aim of the series is to teach a new generation the code of the west through cinema. Films that will be featured are The Westerner, Wagon Master, Gunfight at the O.K. Corral and 3:10 to Yuma. Admission is free courtesy of Oklahoma Ford Dealers.

film, free, movies, museums
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Summertime in the 4-0-5

It’s here, it’s here! Summer, that is. Memorial Day marks the traditional start of summer and the end of the school year. With backyard BBQ’s, 9 p.m. – or later – sunsets and great weather to be outdoors, what’s not to like about summer? Summer is the time of infinite fun, where the day seems to last forever and the fun never stops!

Hold on now, you say. How will we keep the kids entertained, you say. How will we make it through endless days of “Mom, what can we do today?” or “Dad, will you drive us to the mall?” while fighting the urge to ship the family off to distant relatives (distant being the key word) so you don’t have to be the fountain of fresh ideas for family fun and frolic???

Here at Better Life HQ, we have a few suggestions that just might keep your family entertained, all while enjoying some amazing attractions that should be on your summer “to do” list!

One of our favorite OKC hot spots for splashing is just outside the Children's Garden area at Myriad Botanical Gardens. Thunder Fountain lures in kids of all ages with everything from light sprinkles to heavy downpours. Fitting the nature theme of the gardens, this splash pad simulates a real rainforest thunderstorm by going through storm cycles to the delight of everyone under the shaded fountain canopy. The City of Oklahoma City also has pools and splash pads all around town. You can find them here.

Summertime used to mean drive-in movie time, back in the day, and you can still find a few drive-ins around the metro. But there's just something special about watching a movie while sitting on a picnic blanket in the great outdoors. One of our favorite places to catch a flick is Myriad Gardens’ Great Lawn. On Wednesdays throughout the summer, the Great Lawn becomes the backdrop for a free summer flick.

Buy the kiddoes – and treat yourself, too – some peanuts and crackerjacks when you root, root, root for the OKC Dodgers at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark, home to Oklahoma City's minor league baseball team. Tickets to these fun-filled and family-friendly games are more affordable than a game in the bigs, so you’ll have plenty of extra cash for snow cones and hot dogs. The ball yard is conveniently located in Bricktown so catching a game affords you a chance to see the scenic Bricktown Canal and views of downtown. Check out the Dodgers’ schedule to find when the home team is playing.

Anyone who grew up fishing during the summer knows just how much fun it is to dip your hook, but it can be difficult for city dwellers to go to all the trouble to have their kids take up this summertime hobby. Grabbing a pole and bait and taking the time to get a fishing license and scope out a good spot to drop your line may not seem worth the effort. But don’t despair, OKC makes fishing easy by offering Free Fishing Days. You can fish without a city permit on the first Saturday of each month (but you still need your state license). Kids can also take weekly lessons at various Oklahoma City parks throughout the summer so there's no excuse not to share this iconic summer experience with the kiddoes! Who knows, you might even run into the Thunder’s PG13!

outdoor recreation, water sports, Bricktown, Dodgers, family-friendly, fishing, free, kids, movies, Myriad Botanical Gardens
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Life’s a beach in Bricktown

Bricktown Nightlife

Grab your plastic pails and little shovels and load up on the sunscreen, because we’re hitting the beach! The Bricktown Beach is located along the Third Base Plaza on Mickey Mantle Blvd. at the ballpark and features games, lounge chairs, umbrellas and even sand volleyball among other activities and events. Making its return after a successful inaugural run last year, the Beach is free and open 24/7. Join us for Movie Night at the Beach this Wednesday, July 21 at 9 p.m. for a screening of Angels in the Outfield (concessions will be available). Get more info at

Bricktown, family-friendly, movies, outdoor recreation
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, June 6, 2017

deadCenter Film Festival

deadCenter Film Festival Crowd

In 2001, Justan and Jayson Floyd hosted the first of what would grow to be the deadCenter Film Festival. What started off as a one-night, Oklahoma filmmaker festival has grown to a four-day festival screening more than 120 films from around the world. Each year more than 30,000 people are attracted to Oklahoma’s largest film festival, which was rated one of the “20 Coolest Film Festivals in the World”.

This year’s festival will be held from June 8-11 and films will be screened all around downtown Oklahoma City. For a detailed schedule of events, please click here. Registration for an all-access pass is $150, which grants you priority access to all screenings, panels, events, and parties which can be found here. Individual tickets can be purchased 20 minutes before each film for $10 per film, when available.

deadCenter Film Festival is the perfect way for you and your family to get connected to the creative life of OKC and celebrate Oklahoma-based film.  

arts and culture, festivals, film, movies
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Pioneers at heart

Kingfisher Seay House

Just slightly northwest of Oklahoma City you will find Kingfisher. Settled as part of the Land Run, Kingfisher has a rich history.  The city was located right on the Chisholm Trail, where millions of cows were driven from Texas to Kansas. You can learn all about this fascinating time in America’s history at the Chisholm Trail Museum. The museum features one-of-a-kind artifacts from that time period including Native American, farm and pioneer implements. While you’re visiting, check out the 89er Theater. Once a Masonic Temple, this century-old Main Street building has since been resurrected as a movie theater.

A few other interesting tidbits about Kingfisher, Walmart founder Sam Walton was born there in 1918 and the Coleman Company (think camping gear and sports equipment) was founded there in 1900.

day-trip, history, Kingfisher, movies, museums
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, February 16, 2016


Guthrie at night

The city of Guthrie (located just 35 minutes north of Oklahoma City) was chosen as the territorial capital in the months following the Land Run of 1889, and when Oklahoma gained statehood in 1907, Guthrie became the state capital. Today, Guthrie has retained much of its territorial architecture (and charm!) to become one of the most picturesque places to visit. It stands today as a National Historic Landmark filled with examples of late 19th and early 20th Century architecture.

Here are just a few of the many ways to experience Guthrie:

theater, day-trip, food, Guthrie, history, movies, retail
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Downtown in December

Downtown in December Sandridge Santa Run

We know, we know … Winter doesn’t technically start for another month. The trees still have leaves but we can’t help but look ahead to one of our favorite times of the year in Oklahoma City. Nothing wrong with planning ahead right?

There’s no place like home for the holidays… isn’t that how the song goes?! At any rate, there’s no truer statement in Oklahoma City. Just because the temperatures are cooling off, doesn’t mean that the fun is slowing down.

Downtown in December kicks off in a few weeks and it will be chock-full of fun, family activities that we’re sure you and your little angels will want to be a part of. Just watch out for Santa as he makes his way through downtown on his Segway. He’ll be handing out treats for boys and girls of all ages.

Fun family activities include:

  • Free Holiday Water Taxi Rides: All aboard for a fun-filled cruise on a Bricktown Water Taxi! On designated evenings in November and December, everyone can enjoy a fun-filled float down the beautifully-adorned Bricktown canal.
  • Saturday with Santa: Bring the kiddos downtown on to the Devon Energy Center each Saturday in December, to visit meet Santa himself, make crafts, and participate in holiday-themed activities.
  • Prance, dance, jog or run through downtown as part of the SandRidge Santa Run. The ultimate goal is just to have fun! Events include a 5K race, a one-mile fun run or a free Santa Claus kids' dash. Did we mention this is also a fabulous chance to Rumble the Bison and the Thunder Girls?
  • We triple dog dare you to take part in Little Willie’s Triple Dog Dare. The stair climbing challenge will test your endurance and speed as you climb 138 flights of stairs or recruit a couple of friends to take part in the relay challenge.
  • Hit the slopes for a little snow tubing at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark. Choose either the bunny slopes regular slope for the true adventure seeker.
  • Get in the holiday spirit while you learn about Oklahoma’s diverse Native American culture at the Red Earth Treefest. Trees will be decorated with ornaments honoring tribes including the Cheyenne & Arapaho Tribes, Chickasaw Nation, Citizen Potawatomi Nation, Comanche Nation, Osage Nation.

There are plenty of indoor activities to get you in the holiday spirit as well. Check out the following family-friendly performances throughout the season.

movies, music, outdoor recreation, running, theater, ballet, Bricktown, downtown, family-friendly, holiday, kids
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, June 9, 2015

deadCENTER Film Festival: THE Event to Attend This Week in Oklahoma City

If you’re new to town, or even if you’ve been here awhile, you don’t want to miss all the movies and festivities surrounding Oklahoma City’s acclaimed film festival, the deadCENTER Film Festival, coming up at various venues downtown Wednesday, June 10, through Sunday, June 14.

deadCENTER celebrates filmmakers in all genres and Oklahoma City’s thriving film community. During the week, you can see independent films, documentaries, dramas, full-length movies, kids’ films, horror flicks, comedies, short films and more – and learn about their craft in panel discussions and other education outreach programs.

Founded in 2001 as a one-night screening of short films, deadCENTER is celebrating its 15th year and has grown into Oklahoma’s largest film festival. It has been dubbed one of the “20 Coolest Film Festivals in the World,” according to MovieMaker magazine. Last year, about 25,000 film enthusiasts came to the festival, which presents the best of Oklahoma films as well as films from all over the world.

The Oklahoma City Museum of Art is the festival headquarters, but deadCENTER also screens films at Harkins Bricktown Cinemas, Devon Energy Auditorium, The Paramount on Film Row, the Terrace Room at the Myriad Botanical Gardens and outdoors on the Myriad Gardens Grand Lawn.

The all-access pass gives you priority entrance to every deadCenter-related event, including parties, panels and films and is $150. You can also buy individual tickets to specific films starting at 20 minutes before each show, but they might not be available for certain films as pass holders get admitted first. Films include eight Oklahoma features and three free outdoor screenings.

Buy passes. See a schedule. Passholders also get to attend the Opening Night Party sponsored by OG&E from 5 to 10 p.m. on Thursday, June 11, on the rooftop of the Oklahoma City Museum of Art, 415 Couch Drive.

Also, check out the festival’s 15th anniversary celebration from 7 to 10 p.m. on Wednesday, June 10,  at the still-under-construction American Indian Cultural Center (AICCM), 659 American Indian Blvd. Buy tickets for $150 now (separate from festival passes), wear a costume and enjoy getting a sneak peek of the new AICCM at the “deadCENTER Studio Backlot Party” sponsored by The Chickasaw Nation.

Read more about the 2015 deadCenter’s opening night films and Film ICON honorees


festivals, film, movies
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Watch it: Interesting Movie Places in Central Oklahoma

If you’re a movie fan and are having post-deadCENTER Film Festival blues, here are some on- and off-the-beaten path ways to watch movies this summer:

SONIC Summer Movie Nights – For free family entertainment, you can’t beat spreading out on the Myriad Botanical Gardens’ Great Lawn at 9 p.m. on Wednesday night for movies. The movie nights kick off with “Paddington” on July 8 and end on Aug. 19 with “Guardians of the Galaxy.” In between, you can see “Back to the Future” (July 15), “Big Hero 6” (July 22), “The Wizard of Oz” (July 29), “Finding Nemo” (Aug. 5) and “E.T.” (Aug. 12). Bring your lawn chairs or a blanket and a picnic (no glass), or dine from a variety of local food trucks or area vendors like Ice House or Park House.

FAA Credit Union Summer Movie Series at the Boathouse District – head on down to the river with a blanket or lawn chair on select Fridays during the summer for live music, food trucks and a beer garden along with free family-friendly movies projected on the side of the Chesapeake Finish Line Tower. Festivities begin at 6 p.m., with films rolling at 8:30 p.m. This year’s schedule includes “Maleficent” (July 10), “Annie” (July 24), “Planes: Fire & Rescue” (August 7) and “Guardians of the Galaxy” (September 4).

Winchester Drive In: Oklahoma City’s oldest drive-in is open seven days a week for the summer, with movies beginning at 9 p.m. It has been a family tradition for more than 45 years. Farther north, in Guthrie, is the Beacon Drive-In Theater, which has been open since 1950.

Oklahoma City Museum of Art – See independent art films that are likely not showing elsewhere in the Oklahoma City Museum of Art’s Noble Theater. Buy tickets at the box office or online, or dig deeper by reading Film Curator Michael J. Anderson’s Film Blog.

Science Museum Oklahoma – The Dome Theater at Science Museum Oklahoma offers a large-format, dome-screen theater surround that is 70 feet in diameter. It uses IWerks Entertainment 15/70 projection system. Currently, stop by and see “Jane Goodall’s Wild Chimpanzees” in IMAX and “Journey to Space” about plans of NASA and the space community.

Dive-In Movies and Soaked Cinema - Indulge in your love of the cinema while making the most of the summer season! Join the Oklahoma City Parks and Recs team at aquatic centers around the city to watch family-friendly classics in a unique way. If you are looking to cool your heels, Dive-In Movies will begin at 8 p.m. on Saturday evening at Earlywine Family Aquatic Center (June 20) and Will Rogers Family Aquatic Center (August 1). To make a different kind of splash, head over to the city’s spraygrounds for the Soaked Cinema experience in Memorial Park (July 17) and Harvest Hills (July 18). Read more about what’s going on at city pools this summer.


family-friendly, free, movies
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Mat Hoffman and The Birth of Big Air

OKC’s own Mat Hoffman is an unparalleled pioneer in the sport of freestyle BMX. At the tender age of 13, Hoffman was the youngest rider to join the freestyle BMX circuit in 1985, going pro by 16 and inventing many of the tricks you see riders using today. He is especially known for clearing 26.5 feet from a 24-foot quarter pipe ramp (after being pulled to speed using a dirtbike and ski rope), and landing a no-handed 900 in competition, the only person to have done so. Hoffman’s impact on the action sports world is difficult to do justice to in a blog entry, but Spike Jonze, Johnny Knoxville and Jeff Tremaine produced a fantastic film on Mat for ESPN’s acclaimed 30 for 30 series, The Birth of Big Air. The highly acclaimed film kicked off Oklahoma City’s own deadCENTER film festival in 2010 in an amazing ambiance outdoors, with Jonze and Hoffman in attendance.

Appropriately, Oklahoma City named its new action sports park for Mat in 2005 with the opening of the Mat Hoffman Action Sports Park. The park features both a bowl course and a street course and was named one of the top 10 skateparks in the U.S. by National Geographic Travel Guide. The park is open from dawn to 11 p. m., and it’s free!

bmx, film, movies, outdoor recreation
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Something for everyone

Lower Bricktown offers countless ways to enjoy a night out with a group of friends or that special someone.  Catch the final home game of baseball season as the Oklahoma City Redhawks take on the Albuquerque Isotopes at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark Wednesday, Aug. 27. Watch the summer’s hottest movies at Harkins Theater or enjoy a beautiful Oklahoma evening with a ride down the Bricktown Canal. RedPin offers a unique bowling experience you won’t soon forget.

For live music enthusiasts, there’s no shortage of talent in OKC. The fifth annual Live Music on the Canal will take place Sept. 5-6. The event showcases the talents of more than 200 Oklahoma singers and songwriters on five stages in lower Bricktown. Music will be performed along the canal including the Main stage in front of Harkins Theater; Jazmo’s Bourbon Street Café, which will feature both indoor and outdoor venues; and the green space next to Wanda Jackson Way on the canal level.

While you’re exploring Bricktown, don’t forget the many wonderful restaurants. We have a hard time deciding where to go – as lower Bricktown is home to so many wonderful places. From Mickey Mantle’s Steakhouse to In the Raw, KDs Southern Cuisine, Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grill, Fuzzy’s Taco Shop and so many more, there’s certain to be something that whets your appetite.

Bricktown, live music, live sporting events, movies, nightlife, restaurants
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Catch a Flick

Kicking off this week in Oklahoma City is the 14th-annual deadCENTER film festival. deadCENTER has been named one of the “20 Coolest Film Festivals in the World” and attracted 13,000 fans to downtown Oklahoma City last year. Get the full scoop on the film festival in a recent blog entry. Check out this year’s schedule here

festivals, film, movies
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Lights, Camera, Action

Automobile Alley is not the only historic district in OKC that has reinvented itself. Film Row, located on Sheridan in Downtown, was once a bustling hub for film and television action in the region. Today the district is home to several local restaurants, art galleries and even a movie theater. 

On the third Friday of each month you don’t want miss Premiere on Film Row. The street fair features movie screenings, live music, art exhibits and some of the best food trucks in OKC. Be sure to follow @PremiereOKC on Twitter to keep up with the latest on Premiere OKC. 

music, arts and culture, festivals, film, Film Row, food, movies
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, May 6, 2014

The Better Life Blog Goes to the Movies

This week, The Better Life Blog goes to the movies – locally. If you know where to look, you’ll find movie buffs, interesting and indie shows, and film history throughout the metro.

Let’s start with the Film Exchange District, aka “Film Row,” an area of Oklahoma City that has a colorful past – and a promising future. Located between Classen Boulevard and Walker Avenue along Sheridan Avenue, Film Row in recent years has undergone a renaissance bringing some of that history to light – along with new businesses and new life.

For more than 65 years, Oklahoma City was one of the nation’s distribution hubs for the films by major motion picture studios, beginning in the early part of the 20th century. Eventually, nine buildings related to the film distribution business sprung up in the area, a centralized location that allowed film screenings and the sale of products related to them. “Film Row” in Oklahoma City was one of 37 of the film exchange districts nationwide.

Today, it’s home to several businesses and some sites of architectural interest, like the Hart Building, as well as a new monthly, family-friendly street festival, PremiereOKC, which offers film screenings, live music, food trucks, art and shopping. It’s also home to Oklahoma City’s popular deadCENTER Film Festival – one of the 20 “Coolest Festivals in the World” -- which is coming up from June 11-15.  More on deadCENTER in a later post.

Other businesses, artists and event spaces in the Film Exchange District include art gallery Individual Artists of Oklahoma (IAO) Gallery, Oddfab Design Lab, event spaces DC on Film Row and The Exchange OKC, restaurant Joey’s Pizzeria, investment group VentureSpur, The Parmount OKC, Slice Magazine, radio station KOSU Film Row and a shop featuring local artisans known as The Hub OKC.

[Photos courtesy of Patrick W. Moore]

film, Film Row, movies
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Quiet on the Set

Oklahoma is known as a great spot to film movies, whether you’re looking for an outdoor terrain, the urban look in downtown Oklahoma City, historic Main Streets or the wide-open spaces that Oklahoma offers. So don’t be surprised if you recognize some of your favorite Oklahoma scenery in one of your favorite movies. After all, take a look at some of the movies that were made in Oklahoma, listed in no particular order:

  • Rudderless,” 2014, directed by William H. Macy and starring Selena Gomez, Jamie Chung, Anton Yelchin, Billy Crudup, Felicity Huffman and Macy.
  • The Outsiders,” 1983, directed by Francis Ford Coppola and based on the novel by Tulsa author S.E. Hinton. The then-young stars of this coming-of-age movie included C. Thomas Howell, Matt Dillon, Ralph Macchio and Patric Swayze.
  • August: Osage County,” 2013, starring Meryl Streep, Dermot Mulroney, Julia Roberts and others, and was nominated for two Academy Awards. The movie was based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Oklahoma native Tracy Letts.
  • Rain Man,” 1988, which won four Oscars, including an Academy Award for Best Picture and starred Dustin Hoffman, who won Best Actor for the movie.
  • The Cherokee Word for Water,” 2013, winner of Western Heritage Award for Outstanding Theatrical Motion Picture and based on a true story.
  • Dome of Heaven,” 2011, starring Wes Studi as a Cherokee World War II veteran.
  • To the Wonder,” 2012, written and directed by Terrence Malick, starring Ben Affleck, Olga Kurylenko, Rachel McAdams and Javier Bardem.
  • The Killer Inside Me,” 2010, starring Casey Affleck, Jessical Alba and Kate Hudson.
  • Twister,” 1996, starring Helen Hunt and Bill Baxton and nominated for two Oscars.
  • Where the Red Fern Grows,” 1974, based on the popular children’s novel by Wilson Rawls.
  • Phenomenon,” 1996, starring John Travolta, Kyra Sedgwick, Forest Whitaker.

If you want to make a movie in Oklahoma, the Oklahoma Film and Music Office is ready to help, with lists of resources, locations and incentives that are available to filmmakers interested in picking the perfect spot for their upcoming features.

Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Get Your Film Fix at The Paramount OKC

While you’re exploring Film Row this week as The Better Life Blog goes to the movies, check out The Parmount OKC, located in a building that once was home to Paramount Pictures’ distribution facility in Oklahoma City.

Located in the 700 block of West Sheridan, The Paramount OKC’s mission is to promote and encourage the creation and appreciation of the arts, whether it’s through supporting an arts program at a local middle school, hosting regular film screenings or encouraging local film schools and students.

It’s also a full-service coffee bar and a lunch place, and the facility is available for rent. Check out upcoming events or upcoming screenings in the theater with 50 preserved vintage theater seats or open seating that can accommodate up to 80 people.

[Photos courtesy of Paramount OKC]

Film Row, food, movies, restaurants
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Oklahoma City’s Premiere Film Festival: deadCENTER

If you’re a film fan, you don’t want to miss Oklahoma’s largest film festival, deadCENTER, when it starts in June. This year, again, MovieMaker magazine dubbed the popular event as one of “50 Film Festivals Worth the Entry Fee, 2014” and in the past has named it one of the “20 coolest film festivals in the world.”

For five days, movie buffs interested in all kinds of genres will converge on Oklahoma City for screenings that include films from around the world as well those made right here in Oklahoma. The festival offers comedies, dramas, documentaries, shorts, horror movies and kids’ films, among others, as well as parties and panel discussions on a range of topics. The schedule has already been posted.

Some of the events also are free and outdoors on the Myriad Botanical Gardens’ Outdoor Lawn, such as a showing of “Footloose” at 9:30 p.m. Friday, June 13.

So named because it’s in the “dead center” of the United States geographically, the deadCENTER Film Festival has a mission of promoting, encouraging and celebrating the independent film arts, according to its website.

So buy your deadCENTER pass now and enjoy a week of watching movies to your heart's content, as well as parties and a great festival atmosphere!

[Photos courtesy of deadCENTER]

festivals, film, movies, Myriad Botanical Gardens
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Film History 101

If you’d like to learn more about Oklahoma’s rich movie history, check out the current exhibit at the Oklahoma History Center, 800 Nazih Zuhdi Drive.

Called “Oklahoma @ The Movies” and developed in conjunction with Tulsa’s OKPOP, the exhibit celebrates Oklahoma’s involvement in the movies through the years, whether they’ve created the motion pictures, starred in or watched them.

If you want to learn more about Western movies and cowboys, American Indians and Hollywood, the Oklahoma image on screen, historic theaters, the portrayal of different cultural groups or the innovation and creativity of Oklahomans regarding the silver screen, this exhibit is for you.

Celebrated filmmakers in the exhibit include cinematographer Buss Boggs, public relations executive Stan Rosenfield, producer Gray Frederickson and more.

Actors featured in “Oklahoma @ The Movies” include Tom Mix and Will Rogers from the early days of cinema and the Oklahoma roots and Hollywood careers of Joan Crawford, Gene Autry, James Garner, Tony Randall, Wes Studi, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Brad Pitt, Ed Harris, Gary Busey and others.

Can’t get enough? Buy the companion book.

history, movies, museums
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Get on Up to Guthrie

You want to know one of the best things about living in Greater Oklahoma City? It’s more than just Oklahoma City. Sure, we love everything Oklahoma City has to offer, but Greater Oklahoma City is, well, greater. When combined with all of the surrounding cities, there is so much to do and experience it would take a lifetime to do it all. So you better get started.

This week, we’re going to focus on one of OKC’s neighbors to the north – Guthrie. Guthrie just so happened to be Oklahoma’s first state capital (you can read more on that here) and it’s a pretty perfect place to spend a day (or more). So head north (a mere 35 minutes up I-35) and you’ll see what we’re talking about. Guthrie has a website full of suggestions for how to fill your time (and belly) while in Guthrie.

Here are just a few of the many options you will find.

family-friendly, food, Guthrie, movies, restaurants, theater
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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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.

Western Avenue, Adventure District, downtown, food, library, Midtown, movies, museums, Myriad Botanical Gardens, parks, shopping
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, August 6, 2013

10 Ways to Do OKC for Free

We know that sometimes your pocketbook gets a little on the empty side. Not to worry. There are plenty of activities in Greater Oklahoma City that are full of free fun!

  • Mat Hoffman Action Sports Park
    1700 S Robinson. 405.297.3882. Ranked in the top 10 skateparks in the U.S., the action park is divided into two areas – a flow course with bowl combinations and a street course with ledges and handrails.

  • City Parks
    More than 100 public parks located across the city.

  • Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum Outdoor Symbolic Memorial
    620 N Harvey. 405-235-3313. Honors the victims, survivors, rescuers and all who were changed forever by the April 19, 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building.

  • SONIC Summer Movie Nights
    Myriad Botanical Gardens, 301 W Reno. 405.297.3995. On Wednesday evenings during the summer months, enjoy movies on the Grand Lawn at 9 p.m. Come early and enjoy the Mid Week Market and Night Time Stories.

  • Watch sail boats and kite surfers on Lake Hefner
    East side of Lake Hefner near the Hefner Parkway and Britton Road. Watch sail boats cruise across the lake or kite surfers make daring jumps.

  • Paw Park
    At Northwest 73 and Grand Boulevard in Northwest Oklahoma City. A two-acre off-leash dog park with separated enclosures for large and small dogs, water stations and a swimming pond.

  • Tour the Oklahoma State Capitol.
    Northeast 23rd and Lincoln Boulevard. 405.522-5173. Take a self-guided tour or experience the capitol with a trained volunteer.

  • Land Run Monument
    Along the south end of the Bricktown Canal just southwest of Bass Pro Shop. Commemorates the opening of Indian land in Oklahoma Territory.

  • Disc Golf
    3 courses: Dolese Youth Park, Northwest 50 and Meridian; Will Rogers Park, Northwest 36 and Grand Boulevard; Woodson Park, Southwest 33 and May. Play 18 holes of disc golf at any of the courses.

  • Martin Park Nature Center
    5000 W Memorial Road. 405.755.0676. A 144-acre nature reserve with 3.5 miles of gentle hiking trails and many species of animals.
bmx, family-friendly, free, movies, museums, Myriad Botanical Gardens, outdoor recreation, parks, pets, water sports, arts and culture, western heritage
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Sit-In Movies

Want to enjoy a beautiful Oklahoma summer evening? Like good movies? Enjoy good food served out of a truck? Well we have might have the perfect event for you. Every Wednesday night in July, you won’t want to miss SONIC Summer Movie Nights at the Myriad Gardens. Grab your family, friends, favorite blanket or chair and enjoy the spectacular Myriad Gardens while watching such classics as “Forrest Gump” or “Sandlot” on the big screen. Make it a night by bringing your own picnic or eating at one of a variety of local food trucks and vendors.

[Photo courtesy of Myriad Botanical Gardens]

downtown, family-friendly, food, movies, Myriad Botanical Gardens
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Smarter Than the Average Pic-a-nic-er

You’re a picnic enthusiast. Yep, we know how you are. Red-and-white checkered blanket, a wicker basket of just the right size, a can of Off, and it’s on: Picnic Time in OKC, baby. But you don’t want to just plop that blanket down anywhere and start eating! If you tried that in some places, you’d be in big trouble (a stranger’s front yard, on top of the Capitol dome, or in the middle of the river, for instance). Fear not, fellow fare-in-the-field fans. All our picnic base we list here are belong to everyone.

Besides the multitude of City parks in which you can satisfy your picnicy pinings, the Grand Lawn at the Myriad Gardens provides a myriad of opportunities to dine whilst communing with Mother Earth – the Sunday Twilight Concert Series, the SONIC Summer Movie Nights (all five(!) Wednesdays in July), or really any day for that matter.

We’ve told you about Lake Hefner’s picnicking prowess before, but have you thought about the other lakes in town? Like Lake Overholser. Mayor Ed Overholser’s namesake lake and OKC’s oldest drinking water reservoir (it’s been around for nearly 100 years!) allows you to drink in a prime picnic spot along with your picnic beverage of choice (might we suggest something frosty from an OKC-based brewery, perhaps?).

Sometimes picnicking can be a zoo, especially if you’re got a large group. You know where it’s not? Paradoxically, the OKC Zoo! That’s right. Eat while watching animals dream of eating your tasty treats! Good thing they’re behind all those fences.

Speaking of hungry bears, where else can you get your Yogi Bear on? Let us know in the comments section.

Adventure District, downtown, family-friendly, food, free, movies, music, Myriad Botanical Gardens, parks, zoo
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Art Awesomeness

Oklahoma City is home to a pretty awesome downtown art gallery – The Oklahoma City Museum of Art. The Museum in itself is something to brag about. But we are here to share a few things about the Museum with you that perhaps you didn’t know – and that perhaps might make it even more awesome for you (if that is even possible). Did you know that the Museum offers adult travel tours to other cities to check out art throughout the region? In the past art enthusiasts have headed with Museum staff to places like Dallas, Houston and even New York City. And we bet you didn’t know that kids as young at 15 months can take classes at the Museum to begin experiencing art in a variety of ways, from painting to sculpture to puppets. Or how about the fact that you can experience dinner in the Museum Café followed by a movie in the adjacent theatre, all for one low fixed price? See, we told you our Museum was awesome.

arts and culture, family-friendly, movies, museums, restaurants
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Be Cool

So you want to be a cool kid but you don’t know where to start? How about at deadCENTER film festival right here in the heart of OKC? This up-and-coming festival has already been ranked as one of the 20 “coolest” film festivals in the world, and this year will be no different. The festival has movies for every taste—115 of them, to be exact. Start plotting your must-see movie list with their interactive festival schedule.

But you know what is even cooler than hitting up awesome film festivals? Getting involved in your community, of course! This year, deadCENTER film festival has teamed up with Myriad Gardens to offer free outdoor movies at the Myriad Gardens Great Lawn at 9:15 p.m. on the evenings of June 5-9 in exchange for donations toward the ongoing tornado relief effort. Attendees will also have the opportunity to sign up for volunteer opportunities. Films include The Rolling Stones: Charlie is My Darling, The Last of the Mohicans, The Short Game and Stevie Nicks: In your Dreams.

downtown, festivals, free, movies, Myriad Botanical Gardens
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Rainy day adventures

It’s springtime and that generally means we get a healthy dose of rainy days. But that doesn’t mean you have to spend your time cooped up and bored. Throw on some galoshes, grab an umbrella and follow our lead to some excellent rainy day adventures.

  1. Eat something yummy. So what if it’s raining? Sounds to us like great time to explore OKC’s awesome restaurant scene.
  2. Catch a flick. Everyone loves the rainy day activity of hitting up the movies. But we’re here to help you think outside the box. So this time around, why not check out the showings at The Paramount or the Oklahoma City Museum of Art?
  3. Wander the Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory. When you’re inside, it doesn’t matter what’s happening outside – you’re in a tropical paradise.

Got a favorite rainy day activity? Tell us about it!

downtown, food, movies, Myriad Botanical Gardens, restaurants
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Buffalo Sighting

The Buffalo Lounge is back! As Oklahoma invades Austin this week to promote our state at the annual SXSW Music, Film and Interactive conference, we thought we’d give you a little primer on some of the premier aspects of these industries vis-à-vis OKC.

You may know that OKC’s Bricktown is home to the Academy of Contemporary Music at UCO, known locally as ACM@UCO or simply “The School of Rock.” This partner of the original ACM of London trains students in all aspects of the music industry, from production to business as well as musicianship. Not only that, but great live music abounds in Oklahoma City on a daily basis, and each year since 2008 the Norman Music Festival has grown exponentially from its one-day, one-stage beginnings to a three-day, multi-stage free extravaganza that absolutely takes over historic downtown Norman to the delight of music lovers everywhere (this year’s festival is April 25-27). Oh, and a little band called The Flaming Lips makes none other than OKC’s Plaza District their home base for all things weird, wild and wonderful.

In addition to being home to many independent production companies, big-time Hollywood movies are more frequently being shot here with the help of our diverse, fantastic scenery, knowledgeable and experienced crews, and Oklahoma’s film production rebate program. In just the last couple years, OKC has seen working visits from the likes of Nick Cassavetes, Ray Liotta, Kate Hudson, Casey Affleck, Jessica Alba, Bill Pullman, Famke Janssen, Milla Jovovich, Chris Kattan, Casper Van Dien, and more. “The Godfather” and “Apocalypse Now” producer Gray Frederickson calls OKC home, just like you. Not only that, but downtown Oklahoma City boasts and annually hosts one of the coolest film festivals around according to the folks at MovieMaker Magazine, the deadCENTER Film Festival (because we’re right in the middle of the U.S. – get it?).

The interactive industry in general specializes in names that are fun to say, and Oklahoma City’s tech-based entrepreneurs are no exception. Think about it: QuiBids? Quite. Cage? Cool. AliveCor? Amen. Buzzam? Bazinga! SpokesME? Sp’amazing. iThemes? I challenge you to find a better place for tech-based entrepreneurship. Oklahoma City’s low business costs, innovative and outstanding support structure, wealth of higher education and great quality of life translate to something you might not expect – tech-based entrepreneurship hotbed. Industry stalwarts Paycom and US Fleet Tracking were both founded, developed and continue to be headquartered in Oklahoma City, and innovative companies like PL Studios and Advanced Academics continue to grow here. Surprised? We know. As the Mayor says, it’s cray cray.

movies, music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Date Night Dandies

The holidays are a time to be with loved ones. So why not show that special someone a great date filled with holiday magic?

Your lovely lady dropped hints for weeks and unfortunately, you were a little slow picking up on them. Sadly, the Oklahoma City Ballet’s version of “The Nutcracker” has completed its run for this year, but we’ve got some ideas to get you out of the dog house.

Head over to the Plaza District, for Lyric’s “A Christmas Carol” presented by Devon Energy. Shows will run through Dec. 31 so there’s plenty of time to work this into your holiday happenings. If a play is not really your thing, we know what is. You don’t want to miss the last Continental Resources Free Movie Monday of the year. Start your New Year’s Eve date right with a showing of “Home Alone” at Harkins Theatres in Bricktown. These showings have been a hit all season so get your registration in early!

What’s a date night without getting all dolled up? The Skirvin Holiday Celebrations are a great way to enjoy a lovely holiday meal in a beautifully decorated setting. With various options including a Christmas Eve dinner and several choices for Christmas Day, you’ll have time to enjoy a meal with the one you love amid the holiday rush.

family-friendly, movies, restaurants, theater
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Lights, Camera, Action!

If you’ve been hanging around The Better Life for long, you might have heard us talk about a lovely, up and coming district known as the Film Exchange District – sometimes the locals just call it Film Row. This gem is located along Sheridan Avenue between Classen Boulevard and Walker Avenue, and is home to a number of businesses, including a yummy pizza joint, Joey’s Pizzeria. These days, Joey’s has a lovely, mostly new, across-the-street neighbor – The Paramount, OKC. Enter its doors and you’ll find coffee, wine, pie, and, of course, movies. Sounds splendid, right?

Located in the 700 block of West Sheridan, The Paramount sits in a building that was once a distribution facility for Paramount Pictures. Today, patrons can stop by and enjoy tasty treats from their menu – grilled cheese, soup, cookies, pie, coffee, and more. After gobbling up something delicious, we suggest you head over to their 70-seat theater where they screen a wide variety of movies.

This isn’t your run-of-the-mill place to catch the latest blockbuster. Click here to find out more info about their hours, showings, prices, facility rentals, etc.

Photo Credit: By Patrick W. Moore (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

arts and culture, downtown, movies, restaurants
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Bustling Bricktown

Adjacent to downtown Oklahoma City is the fastest-growing entertainment district in the Southwest – Bricktown. With its large concentration of high-energy night clubs, casual lounges and list of restaurants covering a multitude of culinary cultures, Bricktown has something for every taste. And, when you factor in its picturesque setting, which embraces a mile-long canal lined with eateries, clubs, a movie theater, a bowling lounge, the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark and beautifully landscaped gardens and public art, you'll discover something the whole family can enjoy! Vibrant melodies can be heard coming from the American Banjo Museum and the Academy of Contemporary Music. Take a Bricktown Water Taxi cruise along the canal and discover the history of this energetic district. And while the weather is warm, be sure to hail a pedicab or one of several horse-drawn carriages that can be seen ferrying customers all over Bricktown. It's the perfect place for you to choose your own adventure.

nightlife, parks, restaurants, arts and culture, downtown, family-friendly, movies, museums, music
Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber
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