72 hours in Oklahoma City: What to eat, see and do
SEATTLE: Oklahoma City, a thriving cattle town, has blossomed into being a central hub of industry in the state it was named after. Even though we may conjure up images of tornadoes, cowboys, and farmland, this city has a great deal going for it in 2018.
It still has industries of oil and natural gas and the Air Force has a nearby base as well. The Will Rogers Airport offers direct flights to many large cities around the USA, so traveling here is easier than ever before.
While there’s no way you can see everything in 72 hours in Oklahoma City, there’s a lot to do, let’s get started.
Where to stay:
Bricktown Hyatt Hotel: www.hyatt.com
A new Hotel in the completely revamped Bricktown area of downtown, it features all of the modern amenities you’ve come to expect. Free Wi-Fi, some of the most comfortable beds I’ve ever slept on, free breakfast and easy walking distance to many great places to eat and things to do. Any kids you may have will love the indoor pool and those who like to exercise will find the work-out facility to be well equipped.
Where to Eat:
Tucker’s Onion Burger: www.tuckersonionburgers.com
A local favorite for making some of the best-tasting burgers around, Tucker’s onion burgers are formed fresh daily using only Angus certified beef from Creekstone Farms’ Black Angus cows. Adults will appreciate the fact they also offer beer to go along with their delicious burgers and fries. If you’re feeling extra hungry, go for the “Mother Tucker” which weighs in at just over 1 pound of beef.
Cattlemen’s Steak House: www.cattlemensrestaurant.com
Located in the Stockyard district, walking into Cattlemen’s is like stepping back into a time-warp. You won’t find any fancy decor plating but what you will find is down-home, honest to goodness food. It’s served with pride love and with a smile.
The staff at Cattlemen’s are second to none when it comes to making your dining a memorable experience.
If you’re an adventurous eater, try the “lamb fries.” These are lamb testicles that are battered and deep fried served with a cocktail sauce.
Of course, their grilled-over-charcoal steaks are delicious, cooked perfectly to your liking and the wine list features top-notch wines from around the world.
Red Rooster Bar & Grill:
This lively neighborhood grill has been in business since 1937 and continues to be a local favorite. A great place to unwind, it often features nights such as Jamboree Night, every Tuesday. You’ll be able to sip your favorite style of beer while listening to local artists perform. Come here for the tasty bar fare, including what many refer to as the “best burger in town”.
Things to Do:
National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum: www.nationalcowboymuseum.org
If you ever wanted a taste of what life was like in the old-west, then this is the museum you need to check out. It has garnered lots of notoriety and once you see the quality of its exhibits, you’ll know why. It has a bit of everything from Rodeo, to the Native American attire, to the weapons used throughout the old-west.
Boathouse District: www.riversportokc.org
Olympians training for rowing, canoeing and kayaking train here in first-class facilities that are helping to train-up future Olympians. In addition, there’s a man-made river that uses a system of buoys and movable walls to create fast-flowing rapids.
If doing some time in the white-water isn’t your thing, there are also slides and a very tall structure where you’ll climb using rope ladders, walk across a rope bridge and more – all in an obstacle-like way of making getting to the top, a challenge.
The on-site restaurant means you don’t have to go far to grab tasty bites to eat.
Oklahoma City Museum of Art: www.okcmoa.com
Inside, you’ll find everything from gorgeous, hand-blown glass art pieces by Chihuly to local artwork from area painters as well.
This museum really is a nice cornucopia of different things to see.
It does a great job of mixing both local, national and international displays all under one roof.
Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum https://oklahomacitynationalmemorial.org/
This memorial honors the victims, survivors, rescuers and everyone impacted by the bombing of the Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma in 1995 that stunned the nation.
You’ll experience very solemn, respectful memorial structures like The Field Of Empty Chairs.
There’s a chair here for every child that fell victim that day. A reflecting pool, gates of time, survivors wall, the survival tree, journal recording building and much more to see here.
It’s a very surreal experience that can remind us of just how precious life really is.
Oklahoma City Stockyards City: www.stockyardscity.org
In this historic part of town, you’ll be welcomed down an old-fashioned main street. It is literally like walking into a time warp. The many shops, places to eat and the stockyards themselves make for an interesting place to check out. In fact, the National Stockyards is the largest feeder and stocker cattle market in the world.
Additionally, there are several key events that happen throughout the year here, including the upcoming Stockyards Stampede in October.
Water Taxi Ride in Bricktown:
For a rather unique way to tour the Bricktown area, consider a water taxi ride through the canals here. Buying the day pass means you’ll be able to hop on and off of the taxi at will. They also have regularly scheduled tours that are fully narrated and historically-themed.
Saints Sessions at Saints in the Plaza District:
Not only the best blues show in Oklahoma City but maybe the best blues show you’ll find in anywhere.
This Thursday evening event brings out some of the best blues musicians to grace your ears and your soul. You’ll find a mix of traveling musicians as well as local artists as well. Check out their website for the schedule.
American Banjo Museum: www.americanbanjomuseum.com
What would a trip to the southern midwest be without a little banjo action? This instrument has been fundamental to the progress of modern folk and country music. However, it has also played a role in pop-culture. The Jim Henson – Life and Legacy exhibit pays homage to the Muppet creator. If you recall, everyone’s favorite amphibian, Kermit The Frog, also played the banjo.
The Muppet Show also features guests like famous picker, Roy Clark and Steve Martin.
No matter how you look at it, Oklahoma is a thriving metropolis. This city offers a compelling mixture of culture, outdoor fun, and year-round activities keeping things fun. While you may never see a Tornado while here, you’ll undoubtedly be caught-up into a whirlwind of adventure, great eating, and family fun.
It’s great to visit a place that does such an outstanding job of showcasing its roots while embracing current times with a very forward-thinking outlook.
If you’re looking for a great couples getaway or fun for the whole family, there are plenty of reasons to keep going back to Oklahoma City.