courtesy OKC CVB
Published July 06, 2018
Known as the Horse Show Capital of the World, Oklahoma’s vibrant capital city is renowned for its rich Western heritage, eclectic cuisine and nationally acclaimed museums. Visitors will discover unique pockets of culture throughout Oklahoma City, from the Historic Stockyards City, where stockyards and meatpacking plants first established the city as a center of commerce, to the Bricktown Entertainment District, a former warehouse district that has since been transformed into a trendy nightlife, restaurant and entertainment complex.
Groups will find no shortage of world-class attractions to explore in Oklahoma City. The Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum commemorates the victims, survivors and families affected by the tragic 1995 bombing that claimed the lives of 168 Oklahomans. The National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum is among the country’s most distinguished museums on Western culture and houses over 28,000 artifacts and works of art. Based in the heart of downtown, the Oklahoma City Museum of Art has a distinguished collection that spans five centuries of European, American and contemporary art, including one of the world’s largest public displays of glass sculpture by Dale Chihuly.
Unique Group Experiences
At the Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum, groups can participate in First Person: Stories of Hope, a program that features first responders, survivors or victims’ family members who lived through the bombing speaking with the group about their harrowing experience. The Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden, Oklahoma City’s oldest and largest attraction, recently began offering a new immersive experience called The Secret History of the Oklahoma City Zoo, which takes guests on an exclusive two-hour, behind-the-scenes tour of unusual areas such as the Shuttered Gorilla Observatory and the Asian elephant exhibit.
Festivals and Events
Each year, thousands of arts-and-crafts enthusiasts flock to the colorful Paseo Arts District for the annual Paseo Arts Festival. Visitors can wander through art galleries, studios and street booths to pick up original Oklahoma City souvenirs, all while enjoying live stage music and tasty snacks from local food vendors. In late May, the Chuckwagon Gathering and Children’s Cowboy Festival takes place at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, featuring covered-wagon rides, campfire storytelling, Western-themed crafts and authentic chuck-wagon food.