- Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
official_name = City of Oklahoma City
nickname = O.K.C.; Renaissance City
mapsize = 250px
map_caption = Location in Oklahoma County and the state of
subdivision_type = Country
subdivision_type1 = State
subdivision_type2 = Counties
subdivision_name2 = Canadian, Cleveland, Oklahoma, Pottawatomie
government_type = Mayor-Council
established = Founded
established_date = 1889
area_magnitude = 1 E9
area_total_km2 = 1608.8
area_total_sq_mi = 621.2
area_land_km2 = 1572.1
area_land_sq_mi = 607.0
area_water_km2 = 36.7
area_water_sq_mi = 14.2
population_as_of = 2007
population_total = 547274
population_metro = 1,262,027
population_density_km2 = 348.1
timezone = CST
utc_offset = -6
timezone_DST = CDT
utc_offset_DST = -5
postal_code = 731XX
area_code = 405
elevation_ft = 1201
latd = 35 |latm = 28 |lats = 56.28 |latNS = N
longd = 97 |longm = 32 |longs = 06 |longEW = W |longs = 6.72
elevation_m = 396
website = http://www.okc.gov/
blank_name = FIPS code
blank_info = 40-55000GR|2
blank1_name = GNIS feature ID
blank1_info = 1102140GR|3
Oklahoma City is the capital and largest city of the
U.S. stateof Oklahoma. The county seatof Oklahoma County,GR|6 the city ranks 31st among United Statescities in population. [http://www.census.gov/popest/cities/tables/SUB-EST2006-01.csv] The city's estimated population as of 2007 was 547,274 [ [http://www.census.gov/popest/cities/SUB-EST2006.html Population Estimates for Places over 100,000: 2000 to 2006 ] ] , with a 2007 estimated population of 1,192,989 [ [http://www.census.gov/popest/counties/CO-EST2006-01.html Annual Estimates of the Population for Counties: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2006 ] ] in the metropolitan area. In 2007, the Oklahoma City-Shawnee Combined Statistical Areahad a population of 1,262,027 residents. [ cite web | url=http://www.census.gov/population/www/estimates/metro_general/2006/CBSA-EST2006-02.csv|title=CBSA-EST2006-02.com]
Besides Oklahoma County, the sprawling city extends into Canadian, Cleveland, and Pottawatomie counties. It was founded during the
Land Run of 1889.
In 1995, the
Alfred P. Murrah Federal Buildingin Oklahoma City was bombed by a disaffected U.S. Army veteran. With the Oklahoma City bombingresulting in 168 deaths, Timothy McVeighcaused the most destructive act of domestic terrorism in United States history, and the most destructive act of terrorismon American soil prior to the September 11, 2001 attacks.
Oklahoma City was settled on
April 22, 1889, when the area known as the "unassigned lands" was opened for settlement in "The Oklahoma Land Run". Some 10,000 homesteaders settled what is now downtown Oklahoma City and created a tent city in a single day. Within 10 years the population had doubled in what became a permanent settlement and the future state capital of Oklahoma.
By the time Oklahoma was admitted to the Union in 1907, Oklahoma City had surpassed Guthrie, the territorial capital, as the population center and commercial hub of the new state. Soon after, the capital was moved from Guthrie to Oklahoma City. [http://www.tulsaworld.com/webextra/itemsofinterest/centennial/centennial_storypage.asp?ID=070611_1_A4_cpSta85612 Only in Oklahoma: State capital location was a fight to the finish ] Oklahoma City was a major stop on Route 66 during the early part of the 20th century and was prominently mentioned in Bobby Troup's 1946 jazz classic, "(Get Your Kicks on) Route 66," later made famous by Nat King Cole.
World War IIOklahoma City developed major stockyards and, with the discovery of oil within the city limits (including under the State Capitol), it became a center of oil production.Fact|date=July 2007 Post-war growth accompanied Oklahoma City's location as a major interchange on the Interstate Highway System, with the convergence of I-35, I-40 and I-44 in the city. It was also aided by federal development of Tinker Air Force Base.
As with many other American cities, center city population declined in the 1970s and 80s as families moved to newer housing in nearby suburbs.
Urban Renewalprojects in the 1970s removed many older historic structures but failed to spark much additional development.Fact|date=July 2007 A notable exception was the construction of the Myriad Gardens and Crystal Bridge, a botanical garden and modernistic conservatory in the heart of the city.
In 1993, the city passed a massive redevelopment package known as the
Metropolitan Area Projects(MAPS), which aimed to rebuild the city's core. The city added a new baseballpark; central library; renovations to the civic center, convention center and fairgrounds; and a canal to the Bricktown entertainment district. MAPS has become one of the most aggressive and successful public-private partnerships ever undertaken in the U.S. exceeding $3 billion. [ [http://www.okcchamber.com/page.asp?atomid=290 Greater Oklahoma City Chamber - About Oklahoma City - Metropolitan Area Projects ] ] As a result of MAPS downtown housing has skyrocketed as well as increased demand for residential amenities, such as grocery and other retail stores.
Since the MAPS projects' completion, the downtown area has seen continued development. Several of the downtown buildings are undergoing renovation/restoration projects. Notable among these was the restoration of the Skirvin Hotel in 2007. The famed First National Center is also currently being renovated.
The "Core-to-Shore" project was created to relocate I-40 one mile (1.6 km) south and replace it with a boulevard that will create an entrance to the city. [ [http://www.okc.gov/planning/coretoshore/index.html City of Oklahoma City | Core to Shore ] ] This allows the central portion of the city to expand south toward the Oklahoma River, thus connecting the core of the city to the shore of the Oklahoma River.
Residents of Oklahoma City suffered substantial losses on
April 19, 1995when Timothy McVeighset off a bomb in front of the Murrah building. The building was destroyed, more than 100 nearby buildings suffered severe damage, and 168 people were killed. The blast became international news.
Local residents rallied together in an effort to contribute however they could, with the attack serving to unite the city as it began a new era of revival. The site is now home to the Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum. Since its opening in 2000, over 3 million people have visited. Every year on April 19, survivors, friends and family return to the memorial to read the names of every victim lost.
Oklahoma City has a council-manager form of government, with an elected mayor and council setting policy and an appointed city manager carrying out the day-to-day operations. The center of Oklahoma City's municipal government is historic City Hall, an art deco-style building situated on the western edge of the central business district in downtown.
Mick Cornettserves as Mayor, having first been elected in 2004 and then re-elected in 2006. Eight councilpersons represent each of the eight wards of Oklahoma City. The City Manager is Jim Couch, who was appointed in late 2000. He serves on numerous city boards and agencies, and served as Assistant City Manager/MAPS (Metropolitan Area Projects) Director as well as Water/Wastewater Utilities Director prior to his selection as city manager.
Oklahoma City has six sister cities, as designated by [http://www.sciokc.org Sister Cities International, Inc.] (SCI):
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
*flagicon|Taiwan Tainan, Taiwan
According to the
United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 621.2 square miles (1,608.8 km²), of which, 607.0 square miles (1,572.1 km²) of it is land and 14.2 square miles (36.7 km²) of it is water. The total area is 2.28% water. Oklahoma City is located in the Frontier Country region of Central Oklahoma, in the Southern Plains of North America; it is on the tallgrass and mixed-grass prairie section of the Great Plains.
Most of the area consists of gently rolling hills, covered in places by stands of dense, low trees, along with shrubs and many varieties of prairie grasses and wildflowers. Those woodlands, mostly to the north and east of the metropolitan area, are known as the Cross Timbers. They consist of blackjack oak (Quercus marilandica), post oak (Q. stellata), hickory (Carya spp.), and other plant species which become more widespread in the southeastern forests, about convert|100|mi|km east of the Oklahoma City metropolitan area.
The city is roughly bisected by the North Canadian River (recently renamed the Oklahoma River inside city limits). The North Canadian was once substantial enough to flood every year, wreaking destruction on surrounding areas, including the original Oklahoma City Zoo. In the 1940s the Civilian Conservation Corps built a dam on the river, which reduced its flow for the next 50 years. In the 1990s, as part of the citywide revitalization project known as MAPS, the city built a series of low-water dams, returning water to the portion of the river flowing near downtown. The city also has three large lakes: Lake Hefner and Lake Overholser, in the northwestern quarter of the city; and the largest, Lake Stanley Draper, in the sparsely populated far southeast of the city.
Oklahoma City is the seventh largest city in the country in terms of geographic area, and the largest in land area that is not a consolidated city-countyFact|date=November 2007. The
population densitynormally reported for the city using area of its city limits can be a bit misleading, as its urbanized zone covers roughly convert|244|sqmi|km2|abbr=on, compared with the rural areas incorporated by the city, which cover the remaining convert|377|sqmi|km2|abbr=on of the city limits.American Fact Finder Table GCT-PH1 retrieved on 2008-07-17]
Oklahoma City is the second largest city in the nation in compliance with the
Clean Air Act(after Jacksonville, Florida).Fact|date=February 2007
Oklahoma City lies in a
temperate, sub-humid climate, with frequent variations in weather daily and seasonally, except during the consistently hot and humid summer months. Consistent winds, usually from the south or south-southeast during the summer, help temper the hotter weather. Consistent northerly winds during the winter can intensify cold periods.
The summer can be extremely hot, as was evident in 2006 with a few-weeks span of nearly convert|110|°F|°C|abbr=on temperatures. The average temperature is convert|60.0|°F|°C|abbr=on, [http://www.weatherbase.com/weather/weather.php3?s=35327&refer= Weatherbase: Historical Weather for Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States of America ] ] though colder though the winter months, with a convert|37.0|°F|°C average in January, and warmer during the summer months, with an convert|82.0|°F|°C|abbr=on average in July. The city receives about convert|33.3|in|mm of rain annually and convert|9.0|in|mm of snow.
Blizzards occur once or twice some winters, while freezing rain occurs a few times most winters. Prolonged periods of either winter precipitation or sub-freezing weather are limited to less than a week in most cases. Over the year, on average, more precipitation falls than is lost to evapotranspiration, unlike drier places to the west.
Due to Oklahoma City's location north of the western edges of the Gulf of Mexico and east of the semi-arid high plains in the Texas and Oklahoma panhandles, relative humidity also alternates between humid and dry airmasses, though humidity is definitely higher than in areas to the west.
Oklahoma City has a
severe weatherseason from March through August, especially during April and May. Tornadoes have occurred in every month of the year. Oklahoma City has become one of the most tornado prone cities in the United States. [http://www.srh.noaa.gov/oun/tornadodata/okc/ NWS Norman, Oklahoma - Tornadoes in the Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Area Since 1890 ] ] Since the time weather records have been kept, Oklahoma City has been struck by nine violent tornadoes, eight F4's and one F5. It suffered one of the most powerful tornadoes on record, an F-5 on the Fujita Scale, with wind speeds topping convert|320|mi/h|km/h|-1|abbr=on. Parts of southern Oklahoma City and nearby communities were devastated by the tornado on May 3, 1999.
Infobox Weather |single_line=Yes |location= Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Jan_Hi_°F = 47 |Jan_REC_Hi_°F = 80
Feb_Hi_°F = 52 |Feb_REC_Hi_°F = 84
Mar_Hi_°F = 61 |Mar_REC_Hi_°F = 93
Apr_Hi_°F = 72 |Apr_REC_Hi_°F = 100
May_Hi_°F = 79 |May_REC_Hi_°F = 104
Jun_Hi_°F = 87 |Jun_REC_Hi_°F = 105
Jul_Hi_°F = 93 |Jul_REC_Hi_°F = 109
Aug_Hi_°F = 92 |Aug_REC_Hi_°F = 110
Sep_Hi_°F = 84 |Sep_REC_Hi_°F = 104
Oct_Hi_°F = 74 |Oct_REC_Hi_°F = 96
Nov_Hi_°F = 60 |Nov_REC_Hi_°F = 87
Dec_Hi_°F = 50 |Dec_REC_Hi_°F = 86
Year_Hi_°F = 71 |Year_REC_Hi_°F = 110
Jan_Lo_°F = 26 |Jan_REC_Lo_°F = -4
Feb_Lo_°F = 30 |Feb_REC_Lo_°F = -3
Mar_Lo_°F = 38 |Mar_REC_Lo_°F = 1
Apr_Lo_°F = 49 |Apr_REC_Lo_°F = 20
May_Lo_°F = 58 |May_REC_Lo_°F = 32
Jun_Lo_°F = 66 |Jun_REC_Lo_°F = 47
Jul_Lo_°F = 71 |Jul_REC_Lo_°F = 53
Aug_Lo_°F = 70 |Aug_REC_Lo_°F = 51
Sep_Lo_°F = 62 |Sep_REC_Lo_°F = 36
Oct_Lo_°F = 50 |Oct_REC_Lo_°F = 16
Nov_Lo_°F = 38 |Nov_REC_Lo_°F = 11
Dec_Lo_°F = 29 |Dec_REC_Lo_°F = -8
Year_Lo_°F = 49 |Year_REC_Lo_°F = -8
Jan_Precip_inch = 1.2
Feb_Precip_inch = 1.5
Mar_Precip_inch = 2.5
Apr_Precip_inch = 2.8
May_Precip_inch = 5.7
Jun_Precip_inch = 4.3
Jul_Precip_inch = 2.8
Aug_Precip_inch = 2.6
Sep_Precip_inch = 3.7
Oct_Precip_inch = 3
Nov_Precip_inch = 1.8
Dec_Precip_inch = 1.5
Year_Precip_inch = 33.3
source =weatherbase.comcite web |url=http://www.weatherbase.com/weather/weather.php3?s=35327&refer=
title=Weatherbase: Historical Weather for Oklahoma City, Oklahoma |accessmonthday=Jul 4 |accessyear=2008] |accessdate=Jul 2008
footnote=cite web | url=http://www.http://www.census.gov/population/www/documentation/twps0027/twps0027.html |title=Oklahoma City Data]
As of the
censusGR|2 of 2000, there were 506,132 people, 204,434 households, and 129,360 families residing in the city. The population densitywas 321.9/km² (833.8/mi²) with 2,317.4/mi² for an urban area that occupies a small portion within the city's incorporated limits, which cover hundreds of square miles of rural land. There were 228,149 housing units at an average density of 375.9/sq mi (145.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 68.4% White, 15.4% Black or African American, 3.5% Native American, 3.5% Asian American, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 5.3% from other races based on persons indicating only one race category on Census forms. 5.6% of the population were two or more races. 10.1% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 204,434 households, 30.8% of which had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.8% were married couples living together, 13.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.7% were non-families. One person households account for 30.7% of all households and 8.8% of all households had someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.41 and the average family size was 3.04.
In the 2000 Census Oklahoma City's age composition was 25.5% under the age of 18, 10.7% from 18 to 24, 30.8% from 25 to 44, 21.5% from 45 to 64, and 11.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 95.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.7 males.
The 1999 median income for a household in the city was $34,947, and the median income for a family was $42,689. Among full time employed persons, males had median 1999 earnings of $31,589 compared to $24,420 for females. The
per capita incomefor the city was $19,098. 16.0% of the population and 12.4% of families were below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 23.0% of those under the age of 18 and 9.2% of those 65 and older were living below the poverty line.
In June, 2007, the U.S. Census announced its estimate population of 547,274 and that Oklahoma City had grown 1.4 percent between July, 2006 and July, 2007. Since the official Census in 2000, Oklahoma City has grown 8.1 percent, according to the Census Bureau's estimates.
Metropolitan Statistical Area
Oklahoma City is the principal city of the eight-county Oklahoma City Metropolitan Statistical Area in Central Oklahoma and is the state's largest urbanized area. Based on population rank, the metropolitan area was the 46th largest in the nation as of the year 2000.
Geographic Location (8-way)
Northwest = Kingfisher
North = Guthrie
Northeast = Chandler
Centre = OKLAHOMA CITY
East = Del City
Southwest = Mustang
South = Moore
The economy of Oklahoma City, once a regional center of government and energy exploration, has diversified to include the sectors of
information technology, services, health services and administration. The city has two Fortune 500companies: Devon Energyand Chesapeake Energyand several others in the Fortune 1000 and a number of private large companies. Devon Energyrevealed plans in August 2008 for a new 925-foot tall, 1.9 million square foot headquarters building in downtown Oklahoma City. [ [http://www.businessweek.com/ap/financialnews/D92M6OP00.htm Devon plans 925-foot skyscraper in Oklahoma City | Business Week] ]
Other large employers in Oklahoma City include
Tinker Air Force Base, the Federal Government, Dell, AT&T, Boeing, Xerox, United Parcel Service, Cox, Express Services, and the state of Oklahoma.
According to the
Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, the Oklahoma City Metropolitan Area's economic output grew by 33 percent between 2001 and 2005 due chiefly to economic diversification. Its gross metropolitan producttotaled $43.1 billion in 2005. [ [http://newsok.com/article/3096816 City area enjoys increase in jobs | NewsOK.com ] ]
In 2008 Forbes Magazine named Oklahoma City the most "recession proof city in America". The magazine reports that the city has falling unemployment, one of the strongest housing markets in the country and solid growth in energy, agriculture and manufacturing. [ [http://www.forbes.com/2008/04/29/cities-recession-places-forbeslife-cx_jz_0429realestate.html America's Recession-Proof Cities - Forbes.com] ]
wide image|Oklahoma City Skyline From Bricktown Parking Garage.jpg|600px|A 2008 panoramic view of
Downtown Oklahoma City's skyline.Oklahoma City has a wide variety of neighborhoods. Some inner-city neighborhoods are historic and stately whereas others are old and gritty, many undergoing gentrification. Inner-city neighborhoods radiate from those located in downtown and include mostly single-family detached houses with smaller yards. There are a number of apartment dwellings as well, many with a more urban style. Downtown and in the NW Business Districts there are numerous condo and loft developments and several mid- and high-rise options.
Outside of the inner city, Oklahoma City has choices between suburban and rural neighborhoods. The suburban varieties tend to have large tracts of single-family detached housing with large yards. The tracts are usually concentrated around a common setting, such as a lake, a school, library, or shopping destination. The suburban neighborhoods also offer a large number of apartment dwellings and not many multi-family ownership offerings. Rural offerings are relatively extensive given the city's geographic expanse; however, most are not within neighborhoods. In the rural areas, most of the land is protected; however, there are occasional ranch or industrial/office properties.
OCU (formerly Epworth University) was founded by the
United Methodist Churchin September 1, 1904and is renowned for its performing arts, mass communications, business, law, and athletics programs. It was the first American Institution of Higher Education to offer MBAin Russiawith Ulyanovsk State University, Russian-American Faculty; Malaysia; Singapore; India; Germanyand the People's Republic of China, Great Wall of China MBA Program. OCU has one of Oklahoma's three law schools. The university hosts many theater, music, and dance events for the community each year, including a Christmas event. The most recent addition to the campus of OCU is the Wanda L. Bass School of Music, which hosts the Oklahoma City University Symphony Orchestraand the OCU Musical Theatre Company. Three of Oklahoma's Miss Americas are graduates of OCU.
University of Oklahomahas centers in the city and metropolitan area, with the OU Medical Center due east of downtown and the main OU campus located in the suburb of Norman. OU is one of only four major universities in the nation to have all six medical schools. The OU Medical Center is the nation's largest independent medical center, employing more than 12,000 people. [ [http://www.oumedical.com/ OU Medical Center - Home Page ] ]
in south OKC is the second-largest community college in the state.
The third-largest university in the state, the
University of Central Oklahoma, is located just north of the city in the suburb of Edmond. Just east of Oklahoma City is Rose State College located in Midwest City. Northeast of the city is Langston University, the state's historically black college(HBCU), which also has an urban campus in the city. The following is a list of other colleges and universities throughout the city and surrounding suburbs:
Oklahoma Baptist University(Shawnee)
*Oklahoma Baptist University International Graduate School
Oklahoma Christian University
St. Gregory's University[http://www.stgregorys.edu] (Shawnee)
Southern Nazarene University(Bethany)
Southwestern Christian University
Mid-America Christian University
University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma(Chickasha)
University of Phoenix- Oklahoma City Campuses
DeVry University- Oklahoma City Campus
*Hillsdale Free-Will Baptist College (Moore)
*Downtown College Consortium [http://www.downtowncollege.com]
Heartland Baptist Bible College[http://www.heartlandbaptist.edu]
*American Christian College and Seminary
*Oklahoma Baptist College
The city is also the location of the
FAA's Mike Monroney Aeronautical Centeron airport grounds. This facility provides training for the nation's Air Traffic Controllers.
Primary and secondary
Oklahoma City Public Schoolsis the city's largest school district and second-largest in the state. [cite web | url=http://www.okcps.k12.ok.us/general/index2.htm | title=General Information| publisher= Oklahoma City Public Schools| accessdate=2007-07-18] The Oklahoma School of Science and Mathematicsin Oklahoma City is home to some of the state's most gifted math and science pupils. Classen School of Advanced Studiesis located in the Oklahoma City Public School District, a national Blue Ribbon School.Fact|date=July 2007 It was recently named the No. 17-school in the nation according to Newsweek [http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/12532678/site/newsweek/] . In addition, Belle Isle Enterprise Middle School in OKCPS was named the top middle school in the state according to the Academic Performance Index, and recently received the Blue Ribbon SchoolAward.Fact|date=July 2007
[http://www.astec-inc.org Advanced Science and Technology Education Center (ASTEC), Inc.] is an [http://www.sde.state.ok.us/charterschool/charterschools.html Oklahoma Charter School] (both Middle and High School) that began as a summer camp in 1986 while its founder, Dr. Freda Deskin, was on the faculty of the University of Oklahoma. Either the
Oklahoma Universityor Oklahoma City Universityhad, at various times since its inception, sponsored various aspects of ASTEC’s programs. On April 9 2000, ASTEC Charter School became the State of Oklahoma’s first start-up charter school. In addition to the Middle / High School, ASTEC offers an After School Programs, Summer Camp, Virtual School (grades 7-12), and Outreach Programs such as rocketry. In last year's first graduating class, 100% of students are now attending a university. Fact|date=May 2007
There are numerous suburban districts which surround the urban OKCPS district, such as
Putnam City Public Schoolsin suburban northwest Oklahoma City, and Mid-Del Schools [http://www.mid-del.net/] , serving the eastern and southeastern parts of the metropolitan area. The city also has very well developed private and parochial schools, including Casady School, [http://www.heritagehall.com Heritage Hall] Schools, Providence Hall, and the schools of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City including [http://www.bmchs.org/index.html Bishop McGuinness] High School and [http://www.mountstmary.org/ Mount Saint Mary High School] . Of special note, St. Mary's is the oldest high school in the state, founded in 1903 by the Sisters of Mercy.Fact|date=July 2007
A civic initiative named "MAPS for Kids" is attempting to remedy the problems of the inner city district. It will provide new schools for the central city and improve their concatchment areas by moving certain schools closer to wealthier neighborhoods. A sort of "reverse white-flight" is the underlying concept of initiative with the old decrepit inner-city schools being renovated or rebuilt and new technology being made available. An example of this includes John Marshall High School in North Oklahoma City, which in 1968 had 8 National Merit Finalists but saw standardized scores fall in later years. It is being rebuilt on land closer to Lake Hefner. The new John Marshall High School, now under new administration, is complete with facilities and attractions familiar in many suburban districts. The plan is that the school will attract the higher income families and thus improve the Oklahoma City district. "MAPS for Kids" is funded with a voter-approved one-cent sales tax over seven years, which expires in December 2007. Fact|date=July 2007
Oklahoma City has several public career and technology education schools associated with the
Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education, the largest of which are Metro Technology Centerand Francis Tuttle Technology Center.
Private career and technology education schools in Oklahoma City include
Oklahoma Technology Institute, Platt College, Vatterott College, and Heritage College.
Museums and theatre
The Donald W. Reynolds Visual Arts Center is the new downtown home for the [http://www.okcmoa.com/ Oklahoma City Museum of Art] . The museum features visiting exhibits, original selections from its own collection, a theater showing a variety of foreign, independent, and classic films each week, and a restaurant. OKCMOA is also home to the most comprehensive collection of
Chihulyglass in the world including the fifty-five foot Eleanor Blake Kirkpatrick Memorial Tower in the Museum's atrium. [ [http://www.okcmoa.com/exhibitions/dalechihuly-theexhibition Dale Chihuly: The Exhibition | Oklahoma City Museum Of Art ] ] The newly renovated art deco [http://www.okcciviccenter.org/ Civic Center Music Hall] has performances from ballet and opera to traveling Broadway shows and concerts. [http://www.stagecenter.com/ Stage Center for the Performing Arts] is home to many of the city's top theater companies. The building that houses Stage Center, designed by John Johansenis a modernist architectural landmark, with the original model displayed in MOMAin New York City. Also in downtown, the Ford Centerwas ranked by concert industry group [http://www.pollstar.com/ Pollstar] as one of the top ten live music venues in the world in ticket sales.Fact|date=July 2007 campus. The university also opened the Wanda L Bass School of Music and auditorium in April 2006.
The Science Museum Oklahoma (formerly Kirkpatrick Science and Air Space Museum at Omniplex) houses exhibits on science, photography, aviation, and an IMAX theater. The International Photography Hall of Fame (IPHF) exhibits photographs and artifacts from a large collection of cameras and other artifacts preserving the history of photography. IPHF honors those who have made significant contributions to the art and/or science of photography. http://www.iphf.org
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museumhas galleries of western art and is home to the Hall of Great Western Performers. The Oklahoma City National Memorialin the northern part of Oklahoma City's downtown was created and the inscription on its eastern gate says, "to honor the victims, survivors, rescuers, and all who were changed forever on April 19, 1995". The outdoor Symbolic Memorial can be visited 24 hours a day for free, and the adjacent Memorial Museum, located in the former Journal Record building damaged by the bombing, can be entered for a small fee. The site is also home to the [http://www.mipt.org/ National Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism] , a non partisan, non profit thinktankdevoted to the prevention of terrorism.
One of the more prominent landmarks downtown is the Crystal Bridge at the [http://www.myriadgardens.com/ Myriad Botanical Gardens] , a large downtown urban park. Designed by
I. M. Pei, the Crystal Bridge is a tropical conservatory in the area. The park has an amphitheater, known as the Water Stage. In 2007, following a renovation of the stage, [http://www.oklahomashakespeare.com/ Oklahoma Shakespeare in the Park] relocated to the Myriad Gardens. There is also a lake in the middle of the park inhabited by large Japanese Koireplete with waterfalls and fountains.
The [http://www.okczoo.com/ Oklahoma City Zoological Park] is home to numerous natural habitats, WPA era architecture and landscaping, and hosts major touring concerts during the summer at its amphitheater. Oklahoma City also has two amusement parks, Frontier City theme park and White Water Bay water park. [http://www.frontiercity.com// Frontier City] is an 'Old West' themed amusement park. The park also features a recreation of a western gunfight at the 'OK Corral' and many shops that line the "Western" town's main street. Frontier City also hosts a national concert circuit at its amphitheater during the summer. White Water Bay is located north of
Will Rogers World Airport.
Walking trails line Lake Hefner and Lake Overholser in the northwest part of the city and downtown at the canal and the Oklahoma River. Part of the east shore of Lake Hefner has been developed into upscale offices and restaurants, but the majority of the area around the lake is taken up by parks and trails, including a new leashless dog park and the postwar era Stars and Stripes Park. Lake Stanley Draper is the city's largest and most remote lake. The city is implementing a new trail system that will be akin to a bicycle freeway system.Fact|date=July 2007
Broadcast Media in Oklahoma City"
The Oklahoman" is Oklahoma City's major metro newspaper and is the most widely circulated in the state. [http://www.okgazette.com "The Oklahoma Gazette"] is Oklahoma City's independent newsweekly, featuring such staples as local commentary, feature stories, classifieds, restaurant reviews and movie listings. [http://www.journalrecord.com "The Journal Record"] is Oklahoma City's daily business newspaper and [http://www.okcbusiness.com "Oklahoma City Business"] is a bi-monthly business publication. [http://city-sentinel.com "The City Sentinel"] (formerly "The Mid-City Advocate") is Oklahoma City's weekly broadsheet, covering positive developments in downtown, the State Capitol district, and the neighborhoods in Oklahoma City's historic core.
There are various community and international papers in the city that cator to the ethnic mosaic of the city; such as "The Black Chronicle", headquartered in the Eastside, the OK VIETIMES and "Oklahoma Chinese Times", located in
Asia District, and various Hispanic publications. " [http://www.ocustupub.com/|The Campus] " is the student newspaper at Oklahoma City University. Gay publications include [http://www.hnokc.com "Hard News Online"] and [http://www.standout-online.com "Standout Magazine"] .
There are also five metro lifestyle magazines produced by local publisher, Southwestern Publishing: Nichols Hills News, Edmond Monthly, Norman Living, Northwest Style and Downtown Monthly. In addition are two magazines published by [http://back40design.com "Back40 Design"] : [http://edmondoutlook.com "The Edmond Outlook"] and the [http://shawneeoutlook.com "Shawnee Outlook"] . Both contain local commentary and human interest pieces provided to over 150,000 Oklahomans.
Oklahoma City was home to several pioneers in radio and television broadcasting. Oklahoma City's
WKYRadio was the first radio station transmitting west of the Mississippi Riverand the third radio station in the United States.Fact|date=July 2007 WKY received its federal license in 1921 and has continually broadcast under the same call letters since 1922. In 1928 WKY was purchased by E.K. Gaylord's Oklahoma Publishing Company and affiliated with NBC[http://www.ok-history.mus.ok.us/res/bctimelineprint.html] ; in 1949, WKY-TV went on the air and became the first independently-owned television station in the U.S. to broadcast in color.Fact|date=July 2007
On July 3, 2008 the city of Seattle settled with the owners of the NBA
Seattle SuperSonicsfranchise, allowing them to move the team to Oklahoma City for the 2008-2009 season. The relocated team was named the Oklahoma City Thunderon September 3, 2008. The move gave the city its second 'permanent' major professional sports team after the AFL Oklahoma Wranglersand third major team overall considering the temporary hosting of the NBA New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets. For more information, see "Relocation of the Seattle SuperSonics" below.
Oklahoma City is home to several other professional sports clubs including the
Oklahoma City RedHawks, a Triple-A affiliate of the Texas Rangers. Other teams include the Oklahoma City Yard Dawgzof arena football, the Oklahoma City Lightningof the National Women's Football Association, and the Oklahoma City Blazersof the Central Hockey League. Ford Centerin downtown is the large multipurpose arena which hosts concerts, NHLexhibition games, and the city's pro sports teams. Starting in the 2008-09 NBA Season the new NBA team became the major tenant. Located nearby in Bricktown, AT&T Bricktown Ballparkis the home to the city's baseball team. The Brick, as it is locally known, is considered one of the finest minor league parks in the nation.
There are several other stadiums and arenas in the city, including the arena inside the
Cox Convention Center, the State Fair Arena, Taft Stadium, the Don E. Porter Hall of Fame Stadium, and Abe Lemons Arenawhich is located at Oklahoma City University.
Oklahoma City is host to numerous major college and amateur sporting events. The major universities in the area - (
University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City University, and Oklahoma State University) - often schedule major basketball games and other sporting events at Ford Center, although most games are played in their campus arenas.
The [http://www.okcu.edu/athletics/ Oklahoma City University Stars] has a slate of sporting clubs which play on campus including a top-rated rowing program which has events on the
Oklahoma River. Of special note, the university had announced its desire to possibly enter the NCAA during the 2007 athletic season.
Oklahoma City is the annual host of the
Big 12 Baseball Tournament, the World Cup of Softball, and the annual [http://www.asasoftball.com/complex/ncaa_wcws.asp NCAA Women's College World Series] . The city has held the 2005 NCAA Men's Basketball First and Second Round and hosted the Big 12 Men's and Women's Basketball Tournaments in 2007; the city will be the site again in 2009. Since 2006, Oklahoma City has been home to the annual Bricktown Showdown Triple-A Baseball Championship game.
Other major sporting events include Thoroughbred and Quarterhorse racing circuits at
Remington Parkand numerous horse shows and equine events that take place at the state fairgrounds each year. There are numerous golf courses and country clubs spread around the city in addition to tennis clubs and highschool level sporting activities.
New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets
In the aftermath of the
Hurricane Katrinadisaster in New Orleans, Louisiana, and surrounding area, the New Orleans Hornetsof the National Basketball Associationtemporarily relocated to the Ford Center, playing the majority of its home games there during the 2005-06 and 2006-07 seasons. The team became the first NBA franchise to play regular-season games in the state of Oklahoma.
The team was known as the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets and adopted a split personality of sorts, wearing 'OKC neutral' home jerseys (with an OKC patch of sorts over an H-alternate jersey) and New Orleans jerseys during away games. After relocating permanently to New Orleans for the 2007-2008 season, the Hornets played their final home game in Oklahoma City during the exhibition season on
October 9, 2007against the Houston Rockets, as a way to say thanks for the temporary hosting. The 'hometown Hornets' won the game 94-92.
Oklahoma City Thunder
July 2, 2008, upon settlement of a lawsuit with the city of Seattle, the Seattle SuperSonics announced they will begin relocating to Oklahoma City on July 3, and begin playing at Oklahoma City's Ford Center for the 2008-2009 NBA season. The team will leave the franchise history and team name and colors behind in Seattle. [cite news | url=http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2008030229_sonitrial02.html | title=Sonics, city reach settlement | work=The Seattle Times | date=2008-07-02 | accessdate=2008-07-02] Kansas City Kings moved to Sacramento, the Vancouver Grizzliesto Memphisand the Charlotte Hornetsto New Orleans. The new name and color scheme for the Oklahoma City Thunder was announced on September 3; other finalists included Energy, Wind, Marshalls, Barons and Bison. [cite news | url=http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5jtkQAmEAcPleZd_BRfF9EKz2sP5wD92QTAUG0 | title=Oklahoma City's new NBA team to get name next week | work=Associated Press | date=2008-08-28 | access date=2008-08-28]
The process of relocation began in July 2006, when a group of Oklahoma City businessmen, led by
Clayton Bennett, purchased the SuperSonics. After proposing to build a new arena in the Seattle area the group requested permission from the NBA to move the team to Oklahoma City.cite news | url=http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/basketball/337871_arena03.html?source=mypi | title=Bennett says Sonics going to Oklahoma | publisher=Seattle Post-Intelligencer | date=2007-11-02 | accessdate=2007-11-03 | first=Greg |last=Johns] The ownership group left open the possibility of remaining in the Seattle area if financing for a new arena could have been arranged before completion of the relocation process. The group desired to break the Sonics’ lease with Key Arena in 2008, before its 2010 termination. The city of Seattle had rejected previous offers to buy out the lease.
The City of Seattle had filed a lawsuit to keep the Sonics at KeyArena through its lease. A court date was set in June 2008 to decide if the Sonics could break their Key Arena lease.Fact|date=June 2008 The former ownership group headed up by Howard Schultz also filed a lawsuit to rescind the sale of the team. NBA Commissioner David Stern had urged the city to reconsider its lawsuit on the basis that the Sonics would became a "
lame duck" team if they were forced to stay until 2010. However Bennett said the Sonics were prepared to play two more seasons if they lost in court. The City of Seattle had responded that the lawsuit only existed because of Bennett's attempt to break the lease and the city would not accept a cash-only settlement.
March 4, 2008, Oklahoma City voters approved a refurbishment of Ford Centerand construction of a new NBA practice facility, in anticipation of an NBA team. Bennett had reached a preliminary agreement with the City of Oklahoma City on March 14 for a 15-year lease of the Ford Center. [cite news | url=http://www.allheadlinenews.com/articles/7010342461 | title=Oklahoma's Sonics offer gets sweeter all the time | work=All Headline News | author=Jojo Doria| date=2008-03-15 | accessdate=2008-03-15] The Oklahoma State Legislature also passed a bill that provides tax incentives to the Sonics.cite news | url=http://www.komotv.com/news/17916284.html |title=NBA approves Sonics' move to Oklahoma amid legal wrangling | publisher=KOMO-TV | date=2008-04-18 | accessdate=2008-04-18]
April 18, 2008, the NBA gave conditional approval for the Seattle Supersonicsfranchise to move to Oklahoma City for the 2008-2009 season provided the ownership could free themselves from the legal challenges that existed with the City of Seattle with a 28-2 vote by its board of owners.
July 2, 2008the City of Seattle reached an agreement to terminate the Sonics' lease and allow the team to relocate to Oklahoma City. Clay Bennett determined that as of July 3, 2008 the relocation of the now defunct Seattle SuperSonics would commence.
September 3, 2008it was announced the team would be called the Oklahoma City Thunder, after much rumor and speculation.cite news | url=http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5jkN_0O4FG2ehgoJTTnwXt0WAbvfQD92VION81 |title=Oklahoma City's NBA team to be called Thunder | publisher=AP | date=2008-09-03 |accessdate=2008-09-03]
Oklahoma City was home to the following defunct sports teams:
Oklahoma Wranglers: Arena Football League
Oklahoma City 89ers: American Association (20th century) minor league baseball(name changed to RedHawks upon their absorption into the Pacific Coast League)
Oklahoma City Cavalry: CBA Basketball Team
*Oklahoma City Stars : CHL Hockey Team
*Oklahoma City Coyotes : RHI Roller Hockey Team
*Oklahoma City Dolls : All-woman American Football League franchise
The city was also the temporary home of the NBA's
New Orleans Hornetsin the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
Oklahoma City is an integral point on the U.S. Interstate Network. Interstate 35, Interstate 40, and Interstate 44 bisect the city, Interstate 240 connects I-40 to I-44 in South OKC, the Lake Hefner Parkway (SH-74) runs through Northwest Oklahoma City, Kilpatrick Turnpike makes a loop around North and West Oklahoma City, Airport Rd. (SH-152) runs through Southwest Oklahoma City and leads to
Will Rogers World Airport, Broadway Extension(US-77) connects Central Oklahoma City to Edmond, and Interstate 235 spurs from I-44 in North Central OKC into downtown Oklahoma City.
As reported by the
Oklahoma Department of Transportationin 2005, the busiest freeway in Oklahoma City, and in the state of Oklahoma, is Interstate 44, with an average of 118,000 to 132,000 vehicles daily.Fact|date=July 2007 The I-40 Crosstown Oklahoma City CrosstownConstruction Project will relocate a stretch of highway near downtown several blocks to the south. It was expected to be completed by the end of 2008, however new reports now say it could be as late as 2012 that the new Crosstown will be complete.Fact|date=July 2007
Oklahoma City is served by two primary airports,
Will Rogers World Airportand the much smaller Wiley Post Airport(incidentally, the two honorees died in the same plane crash in Alaska). Tinker Air Force Base, in East OKC, is the largest military air depot in the nation, a major maintenance and deployment facility for the Navy and the Air Force, and the second largest military institution in the state (after Fort Sillin Lawton). Amtrakhas a train station downtown, with daily service to Fort Worthand the nation's rail network via the Heartland Flyer. There is also a heritage rail line under re-construction that will connect Bricktown and the Adventure Districtin NE Oklahoma City. Fact|date=July 2007
Greyhound and several other intercity bus companies serve Oklahoma City at Union Bus Station, Downtown.
METRO Transitis the public transit company. Their bus terminal and headquarters is located downtown at NW 5th Street and Hudson Avenue.
Oklahoma City Picture Gallery
Coyle v. Smith
List of famous Oklahoma City Area Citizens
* [http://finnolafjones.com/news_story.php?title=Oklahoma_City_Is_Booming_With_Oil_and_a_New_Exuberance&id=0148bf281b6d4b8 / New York Times travel story on Oklahoma City]
* [http://www.visitokc.com/ Convention & Visitors' Bureau]
* [http://www.okc.gov/ Official City Website]
* [http://www.okcchamber.com/ Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce]
* [http://www.artscouncilokc.com/ Arts Council of Oklahoma City]
* [http://okc.about.com/ Information about Oklahoma City at About.com]
* [http://www.putnamrocks.com/ Information about Oklahoma City/Putnam City Schools]
* [http://www.communityokc.com/ OKC Entertainment & Nightlife]
* [http://www.eataroundokc.com/ Oklahoma City Restaurants]
* [http://www.TheLostOgle.com/ OKC Pop Culture Blog]
* [http://www.okcpulse.com/ OKC Online Magazine]
* [http://www.okccrime.com/ OKC Crime Mapping]
* [http://www.okchistory.com/ OKC History] Oklahoma City history web site
* [http://www.everythingokc.com/ Everything Oklahoma City] Local arts, entertainment and news blog
* [http://www.jewishokc.com/ Chabad Jewish Community Center]
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