Must-See Summer Events in Frontier Country
OKLAHOMA – With a total of 12 counties making up central Oklahoma’s Frontier Country,
locals as well as visitors can enjoy an abundance of sights, events, exhibits
and festivals for the whole family to enjoy throughout the summer.
“Whether you are looking for something to do for a day or even a whole weekend this summer, there’s always plenty of must-see events in central Oklahoma’s Frontier Country,” said Sherri Rogers, executive director of Frontier Country Marketing Association. “There’s always a festival, museum exhibit, grapes in bloom, lavender to pick, water slides and ball games. With I-35, I-44, I-40 and historic Route 66 running right through, Frontier Country is the perfect place to plan activities and getaways this summer.”
Visit the Sam Noble Museum in Norman to explore a special exhibit, Chocolate: The Exhibition. On view through Sept. 12, the exhibit will immerse visitors in a sweet experience. The exhibition offers a wide scope of experience and discovery while exploring the transformation of an unusual rainforest plant into the world’s favorite treat. More information: (405) 325-4712, snomnh.ou.edu.
The Oklahoma City Museum of Art presents the exclusive exhibit Sketch to Screen: The Art of Hollywood Costume Design on display through Aug. 15. This original exhibition consists of more than 85 original garments and accessories worn in films by some of Hollywood's brightest stars and explores the vital artistic contribution of costume design throughout the history of the American motion picture industry. More information: (405) 236-3100, okcmoa.com.
See how Oklahomans have played a major role in the evolution of comic books, comic strips and editorial cartoons in a new exhibit, The Uncanny Adventures of Okie Cartoonists at the Oklahoma History Center in Oklahoma City. In this interactive, kid-friendly exhibit, discover how industry pioneers have created, drawn or written some of the most recognizable characters in American popular culture. The exhibit opens June 12. More information: (405) 522-5248, okhistorycenter.org.
Other exhibits in central Oklahoma this summer include Prix de West art exhibition, June 11-Sept. 6 at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, Wanderlust: Travel and American Photography on display June 5-Sept. 12 at the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art in Norman and The Passionate Lenses of Yousef Khanfar through July 31 at the Gaylord-Pickens Oklahoma Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City.
& Live Perfromances
Lyric Theatre, Oklahoma’s professional theatre company, loads its summer season with fan favorites. Pump Boys & Dinettes, June 22-26; Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, July 6-10; 42nd Street, July 20-24 and Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story Aug. 3-7. More information or tickets: (405) 524-9312, lyrictheatreokc.com.
Oklahoma Shakespeare in the Park presents several shows for its summer season Thursday through Sunday nights at the Bicentennial Park in downtown Oklahoma City. The Taming of the Shrew runs June 17-July 11. The Comedy of Errors runs July 15-Aug. 7 and the classic Romeo and Juliet runs Aug. 12-Sept. 4. More information or tickets: (405) 232-3700, oklahomashakespeare.com.
Oklahoma Children’s Theatre shows two productions this summer including Twice Upon a Time June 16-20 and Charlotte’s Web Aug. 4-8. More information or tickets: (405) 951-0011, oklahomachildrenstheatre.org.
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum’s Chuck Wagon Gathering & Children’s Cowboy Festival is Memorial Day weekend May 29-30 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. Enjoy family entertainment at its finest while authentic chuck wagon crews prepare delicious cowboy favorites for folks to sample, like biscuits and stew, beans and cobblers. More information: (405) 478-2250, nationalcowboymuseum.org.
Yukon’s free Taste of Louisiana & Crawfish Festival June 5 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. will celebrate the history of western heritage in Cajun-style with a gunfight, chicken race, Kids Kreative Korral, Marvin the Mechanical Bull, crawfish-eating contest, live music and more. More information: (405) 350-7680, cityofyukonok.gov.
Take part in El Reno’s A Small Town Weekend June 4-6. The weekend includes a free downtown concert on Friday night, children's games and activities, festival foods, shopping, block party, Hot Wheel races, Classic Car Cruise and the only legal burnout in the state, the Route 66 Burnout. More information: (405) 262-3876, elreno.org.
See more than 1,200 American Indian artists and dancers from throughout North America celebrating the richness and diversity of their heritage with the world at the 24th Annual Red Earth Native American Cultural Festival June 18-20 at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City. Visitors can see and even purchase beadwork, jewelry, basketry, pottery and more from some of the nation’s most celebrated artists. More information: (405) 427-5228, redearth.org.
Also, don’t miss the annual Ice Cream Festival June 12 at Tilghman Park in Chandler and the Woody Guthrie Folk Festival July 14-18 in Okemah.
Head to Stillwater for Eskimo Joe’s 35th Anniversary Bash as Eskimo Joe's, Stillwater's Jumpin' Little Juke Joint celebrates 35 years July 19-25. Enjoy live music shows, food and drink specials, a cool new anniversary shirt, a kids’ carnival and a street party. More information: (405) 372-8896, eskimojoes.com.
Join Oklahoma River Cruises on their History Comes Alive Cruises each Saturday at noon at 12:45 p.m. through Aug. 21. During this series, colorful Oklahoma characters will reenact history through the eyes of those who created it. More information: (405) 702-7755, okrivercruises.com.
Check out the National Reining Horse Association Derby at the Oklahoma State Fair Grounds in Oklahoma City June 21-26. The event showcases the world’s best four-, five- and six-year-old reining horses and includes a full slate of ancillary reining classes in addition to the derby action. More information: (405) 946-7400, NRHAderby.com.
Frontier Country Marketing Association, a 501-c6 organization, promotes the economic growth of the tourism industry in the 12 central counties of Oklahoma. For more information or request a free travel guide or ‘Trips on a Tank Full’ coupon brochure, visit www.oktourism.com or call (800) 386-6552.
Katie Puckett, Public Relations Manager