Livin' On Tulsa Time// Where to Eat, Drink, Stay, and Play...(THE PLAY DIARY.)

In a desperate attempt to get some of beloved to friends to visit me before my big move across the world I have decided to put a 4 piece travel guide for my current hometown: Tulsa, Oklahoma. With Tulsa Tough visitors coming in and the fabulous shows we have lined up with Cain's BallroomThe Brady Theatre, and BOK, I figured this would be a wonderful way for those people to explore my favorites. Part one...The food diary, has already been published here for everything you need to know about my favorite things to eat! Love coffee and cocktails...then check out my favorite places to drink in my drink diary. Love the outdoors? Love art? Love shopping local? Love live music? Love exploring? TUL has a little something for everybody and these are my absolute favorite places to play!

OUTDOOR ADVENTURES:

CHANDLER PARK  ...192 acres of wooded area that has great natural beauty and panoramic views of Tulsa and Sand Springs. Sooo many rock formations for climbing. I have so many fond memories here as it was a place I would frequent quite a bit when first moving here. Time to dust off the old climbing shoes and re-explore. 

TURKEY MOUNTAIN.....Turkey Mountain is a hidden place. Considering that the main trailhead is only 7 miles from downtown Tulsa, one would expect such a place to be crowded with users. However, first-time visitors are often surprised to find that one can run/bike for miles without seeing another soul – a testament to the many trails at Turkey Mountain. Crowded with roots and rocks, blessed with views of the Arkansas River, and basically untouched by humanity in general, Turkey Mountain is a treasure to all Tulsans. Hike, walk, jog, and go biking. Just get outdoors!

My bicycle Dolores . 

My bicycle Dolores . 

TULSA GARDEN CENTER: The Rose Garden is the perfect place to stroll with coffee and just unwind. The Rose Garden’s five terraces begin at the top of a gentle slope and end 900 feet west at Peoria Avenue. English ivy-covered stone walls and steps connect the different levels. Pools or fountains are found on all levels. Junipers, clematis, and magnolia trees are all found amidst the wide array of roses in the gardens. There are approximately 5,000 rose plants representing nearly 250 varieties in the Rose Garden. The roses bloom from May until frost (usually in November), but the peak bloom period is from mid-May through June and again in October. Don't forget your camera!

ELWOODS:  This gem is so close to my home and is dog friendly making that a huge plus! It's the perfect place to people watch, enjoy live music, day dream with a good book , and have a picnic with friends. There is also yoga in the park once a week and I love the movie nights on the lawn. It's one of my favorite things to do in fantastic weather with a picnic from Lambrusco'z To Go! 

GUTHRIE GREEN: // Brady Arts:  Guthrie Green, an urban park and entertainment space in the heart of Tulsa's Brady Arts District. Food Truck Wednesdays for lunch is my favorite thing! There is always something going on here too from live music, fitness events and everything is free to the public. Don't miss The First Friday Art Crawl in The B.A.D. The First Friday Art Crawl was established in 2007. This year-round monthly event features all of the galleries, studios and museums as well as the part-time galleries in various shops opening their doors to show art. The Art Crawl is held on the first Friday of the month and open from 6–9 pm. It's so much fun! My most favorite shows are often at Mainline.  Living Arts  is always amazing too. Thrilled to see the newest exhibit up now until June, called Seeking Shelter. My friend Jeana Acosta was the emerging curator and my dearest friend and photographer Phoenix Moore has some lovely prints on display highlighting the homeless in Tulsa. He is giving all proceeds to the homeless so be sure to check out this lovely exhibit! Zoe and I plan on checking it all out this weekend. That's the great thing about First Friday too. If you can't attend all the exhibits are up for a month after that so don't fret! 

LULULEMON: Every Sunday at 11:00 a.m. catch a free outdoor hour-long class...mostly yoga but they do switch it up with barre, and spin as well.  I always feel like I can earn my brunch on Sundays doing this! Then stroll around all the fantastic shops in Center 1. Retail therapy at it's finest! 

CHERRY SREET FARMERS MARKET: Saturday mornings from 7 to 11 a.m is where you can find this fantastic market with 75 vendors. Stock up on local delicious food to prepare for that Saturday night dinner! Everything is so incredibly fresh and reasonably priced. And I adore the fresh flowers! It's the biggest market in Oklahoma and a really fun weekend kick off! 

INDOORS:

PHILBROOK MUSEUM OF ART:  One of my favorite spaces to have a leisurely day surrounded by art and beautiful gardens. You can get lost here for hours and hours. Bring your camera and favorite walking shoe and make a day of it.  Wonderful exhibits come through...my favorite thus far , of course, was Warhol. (There is a location downtown too if that works into your overall logistics better..you will miss the gardens and the historical beauty but I do love the downtown location !

GILCREASE MUSEUM: a museum located northwest of downtown Tulsa, Oklahoma. The museum houses the world's largest, most comprehensive collection of art of the American West, as well as a growing collection of art and artifacts from Central and South America. The museum is named for Thomas Gilcrease, an oil man and avid art collector. Gilcrease Museum presents Frida Kahlo: Through the Lens of Nickolas Muray, an exhibition of photographs of Frida Kahlo, on display beginning July 10 and running through September 11, 2016. This exhibition provides an intimate look at Frida Kahlo, Mexico’s most prolific and well-known female artist, through the photographic lens of her long-time friend and lover, Nickolas Muray. I am on the edge of my seat for this one!! 

Photo Courtesy of Gilcrease Museum.

Photo Courtesy of Gilcrease Museum.

CIRCLE CINEMA:  Nonprofit Theater screening independent & art films in a 1928 cinema with an art gallery.  I love this place! You can catch a lot of great indie films and support local! Living in Dallas for so long I got quite obsessed with independent Theatre's and you will not be disappointed with this Tulsa Kendall Whittier gem!  You can also check out the surrounding businesses in this area, as it's the new up and coming area in TUL. Looking forward to see what transpires. Dior and I was definitely a highlight of mine.  And now I am day dreaming about my favorite Dior resort show  ....OMFG!

THE BRADY THEATRE: Completed in 1914, the Brady Theater was originally designed as a municipal auditorium and convention hall by the architectural firm of Rose and Peterson of Kansas City, KS. The building was known as Convention Hall for the first forty years of its life. When the facility officially opened, it was billed as the largest hall between Kansas City and Houston. In 1930, world-renowned architect Bruce Goff was hired as designer of a major interior remodel. He had thirty days to transform the barn-like interior into an elegant showplace. The Art Deco style remodeling included draperies and seats, vertical wall panels of white plaster decorated with thin gold dividers, gilded air conditioning grilles, and acoustic ceiling tiles painted green, blue, white, and gold. Five massive green and white pendant light fixtures were installed centrally in the auditorium. In 1952, additions were constructed at the front and rear of the original 1914 structure. Upper and lower lobbies were added and the building was renamed Tulsa Municipal Theater. In 1979, the building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The architectural design at the time was referred to as Western Classic Revival. Floor seating, balcony seating.... it doesn't matter. There is not a bad seat here! It's my favorite music venue!!! So many fabulous memories here including seeing Ryan Adams twice!!! Bon Iver was definitely a fave. Norah Jones, Vampire Weekend, Beach House, The Avett Brothers, & the list goes on.  Check their upcoming shows here

CAINS BALLROOM:  Built in 1924 by Tulsa entrepreneur Tate Brady, The Cain’s Ballroom has gone from a garage, a dime-a-dance joint and a dancing academy until it became what is known by artists and patrons alike as one of the top performance venues in the world today.The highlight of the ballroom is a historic maple, spring loaded dance floor designed in a “log cabin” or concentric square pattern. Lighting the dance floor is a four-foot neon star and a silver disco ball. The walls are decorated with oversized photographs of various musicians who played Cain’s, including Bob Wills, Johnnie Lee Wills, Ernest Tubb, Hank Williams, Tex Ritter, Kay Starr and Tennessee Ernie Ford. Between the portraits are black fiddle-shaped fixtures illuminated by a single red bulb.Bob Wills was born into a family of fiddlers where he learned to play the fiddle and mandolin. As a young man, Wills performed at house dances, medicine shows and on the radio. On New Year’s Night 1935, he made his debut at Cain’s and the venue soon became known as “The Home of Bob Wills.”

As The Home of Bob Wills and The Texas Playboys from 1935 to 1942, the ballroom was especially significant for popularizing a new sound of western music called western swing, a form of country and western that combined jazz, hillbilly, boogie, blues, big band swing, rhumba, mariachi and jitterbug music. Weekly dances, a midnight radio show and a daily noon-hour program were played by Bob Wills during what are remembered as his “glory years.”

Bob Wills is remembered as “The King of Western Swing.” He was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1978, into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999 and received a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007 for his significant contributions to American music from the 1930s through the 1960s. During his career, Wills wrote and recorded at least 470 songs, including “Take Me Back to Tulsa” and “San Antonio Rose,” and he influenced such artists as Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard and Asleep at the Wheel. Cain’s is known throughout the music industry as not only “The Home of Bob Wills,” but also as the “Carnegie Hall of Western Swing.”  

Sooooo many shows here...Broken Social Scene, Wilco, St. Vincent, Beach House, Of Montreal, The Heartless Bastards and The National being my fondest memories. GO experience the spring loaded dance floor for yourself !

Woody Guthrie Center:  Public museum and archive located in TulsaOklahoma that is dedicated to the life and legacy of American folk musician and singer-songwriter Woody Guthrie. Exterior of Woody Guthrie Center in the Brady Arts District .The Woody Guthrie Center is located at 102 East Brady St. in Tulsa's Brady Arts District. It features an interactive museum where the public may view musical instruments used by Guthrie, samples of his original artwork, notebooks and lyrics in his own handwriting, and photographs and historical memorabilia that illustrate his life, music, and political activities. Visitors may also view a short biographical film and listen to samples of his music and that of other artists who were influenced and inspired by Guthrie. Various folk music events are sponsored by the Center . The Woody Guthrie Archives, which is the world's largest collection of material relating to Guthrie's life, are housed on-site in a climate-controlled facility that is partially visible through windows from the public museum area. The archives contain manuscripts, lyrics, correspondence, artwork, scrapbooks, musical recordings, books, and photographs, and are open to researchers by appointment.

THE BOB DYLAN ARCHIVES:  How cool is this that TUL will be the home of this??!! My current hometown is about to become the center of Bob Dylan's universe!! Total freak out moment when it was announced. There have long been rumors that Mr. Dylan had stashed away an extensive archive. It is now revealed that he did keep a private trove of his work, dating back to his earliest days as an artist, including lyrics, correspondence, recordings, films and photographs. The Bob Dylan Archive, comprised of more than 6,000 items spanning nearly the entire length of his career, was acquired by the George Kaiser Family Foundation and The University of Tulsa and will be housed at TU’s Helmerich Center  for American Research. The materials – nearly all of which have never been viewed or accessed by outside parties – will be made available to scholars and curated for public exhibitions in the near future.In a preview of the Bob Dylan Archive by The New York Times, it is clear that the archives are deeper and more vast than even most Dylan experts could imagine, promising untold insight into the songwriter’s work.  I have been listening to his music for years and will never tire of it! It was always Bob! (Bob, my love) I mean just listen to this sweet dear. SWOON. Major major swoon. 

All my fave places to shop:

THE FLORAL BAR BY EVER SOMETHING: Fresh flowers are my afternoon pick- me- up heaven and this gem has the prettiest flowers. They put together the most exquisite pieces for me! And I love sitting at the floral bar watching them create my gorgeous arrangements. That's the funnest part. They did my birthday party flower arrangements this year and I ended up using their flowers for my cake topper too. They were everything and more . They do event styling as well! Treat yourself, treat your bestie, treat your lover!

 

Jo and June: I adore visiting this inspiring space so much. Danielle and Philip do a fantastic job curating special handmade lovelies, vintage finds and handmade furniture as well as eclectic pieces. This is the perfect place to grab a unique gift! They have a fantastic blog  as well where they Share their passions for god, DIY, food, fashion, travel, and furniture. Their styling work is impressive and they are definitely the ones to watch here in T-town. They just recently did a styling shoot at the gorgeous Spain Ranch and I am literally dying!!! Sooooooo gorgeous. Check it out here.  

VINTAGE VAULT TULSA:   This is so the place to find the best mid century furniture and clothing. Sheila is incredibly helpful. She knows my style and things that I am going to love. Soooo many of my gems have come from here!!! She has an amazing ability to curate and is incredibly knowledgable in all things Vintage. 

GARDEN DEVA SCULPTURE: Garden Deva Sculpture Company is located in the heart of the up-and-coming Pearl District, near downtown Tulsa, Oklahoma. The vibrant, colorful building, just South of 3rd & Trenton, is surrounded by beautiful gardens and Garden Deva metal artwork. Artist and friend, Lisa Regan, began this business in 1996, naming it after inspiration from one of her favorite films. In the story, happy garden spirits, called Devas, sought to bring life to barren soil. The word “garden” translates to “beautiful place”, and thus, Garden Deva was born, where we hope to fill your beautiful places with happy spirits. The 3,000 sq. ft. gallery is open to the public weekdays from 10am – 5pm and seasonally on Saturdays from 10am – 2pm. Within the studio, you will not only see the work of Lisa Regan, but 10 – 15 featured artists within the cooperative gallery. Providing a space to support local artists and to show their work is a core goal that Garden Deva is proud to have achieved. Starting mid-life as a full-time artist, Lisa knows that support from fellow artists and the community is key to the continued growth of Tulsa’s thriving artistic culture. Next to the gallery is the industrial metal shop, where Lisa and the crew create the handmade artwork. Every piece is created within the building. I can spend hours here and always find something unique !! She is amazing to collaborate with on trunk shows also . Shop Sam's Closet hosted their Spring 2015 show there ! 

SR Hughes: SR had its beginnings in 1980, when Sara Rodgers Hughes and daughters Sallie O’Neill Hughes and Beth Hughes Sachse opened their antique business in a tiny frame house in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Today the two sisters have been joined by a third generation of family members and additional creative personnel. The SR Hughes design group now operates out of a spacious, streamlined showroom and studio in Tulsa’s Brookside area. They represent a collection of classic modern vendors unparalleled in Oklahoma and the surrounding area. A fresh and unique perspective enlivens both the eclectic showroom and their interior designs, which have appeared in regional and national publications. The team carefully adapts each project to the desires, needs and lifestyle of the individual client. Their goal is to build a legacy of timeless design and their passion is to inspire and delight. We have many pieces in our home and treasure them. This is what is causing us the most anxiety in our move to Spain believe it or not! 

GLACIER CONFECTION: I have a sweet tooth and these truffles are my favorite! This is where I purchase gifts for those hard to buy for people in my life. They are exquisite and you will become obsessed! They really are too pretty to eat but....

P.S: Take a trip to G . Oscar's bicycles... love visiting. I obviously am not buying bikes everyday but it's a place I love passing time and taking my out of town friends. Every nook is jam packed with bicycles, bicycle parts, and accessories. You will also see wonderful photographs and paintings done by Mister G himself...GAYLORD OSCAR HERRON. I think he is Tulsa's finest photographer! For much of the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s, he was best known as a superb local photographer and author of the photobook, “Vagabond,” published in 1975. “Vagabond” is a collection of thought-provoking photos, paintings and writings that cover Tulsa and Herron’s life from the 1940s to the early ’70s. It is structured around the story of Cain and Abel and Herron’s relationship with his father. He is also the best bike doctor ever ! If these walls and bicycles could talk.... (Such a gem) He might even tell you a story or two !

 

Happy Playing !

Shop the story here!

XO

Sam