5 Essential Experiences in Tulsa, Oklahoma

Tulsa, Oklahoma is a vibrant, growing and progressive city located in the northeastern part of the state known as “green country.”  This is a really exciting time in Tulsa’s evolution because the community has come together like never before to create a cultural vibe that by design, is out of this world.  Everything about the city of Tulsa indicates betterment and the hardworking, devoted citizens of the city are determined to make Tulsa not only an amazing place to live, but also a tremendous place to visit.

Here are my 5 Essential Experiences in Tulsa, Oklahoma!

1.  A Gathering Place

As a testament to how progressive and expansive the community of Tulsa, Oklahoma really is, my #1 experience isn’t even completed yet.  In fact, groundbreaking on this massive property occurred just this month.  The George Kaiser Foundation poured 200 million dollars into the project and it is expected to cost roughly 350 million total.  The Kaiser Foundation’s contribution is the largest of its kind in the history of the United States.  A Gathering place will be completed in late 2017 with a total footprint of more than 100 acres.

Nothing like this exists anywhere else and this will be the defining place for Tulsans.  From entertainment to daily recreation, exercise and family time, this mega-complex located on the banks of the Arkansas River will create amazing opportunity for Tulsans and will impress all who visit the city.

Track the progress on A Gathering Place here: http://agatheringplacefortulsa.com

2.  Brookside

Brookside is a stretch of road lined with great places to sit, eat, drink and relax with friends or make new ones

Brookside is a stretch of road lined with great places to sit, eat, drink and relax with friends or make new ones

This is my go-to spot for a calm, cool, local Tulsa experience.  The sports bars, restaurants and vintage buildings offer a sense of nostalgia as you let the hours pass listing to local music, sipping local coffee and eating and drinking with some of Tulsa’s friendliest people.  From sushi and burgers to posh shopping and Bohemian-vibe coffee shops and restaurants, Brookside, located just blocks from the Arkansas River has a look and feel all its own and it’s one you’ll definitely want to experience when visiting Tulsa.

3.  Fitness

Sky Fitness & Wellbeing midtown Tulsa location

Sky Fitness & Wellbeing has multiple locations in Tulsa!

Physical fitness is big in Tulsa and the health clubs and local parks allow you to take full advantage of the great fitness culture that Tulsa offers.  Countless running and cycling groups fill the roads and trails and the health clubs are busting at the seams with innovative, high-energy fitness offerings that allow anyone and everyone to engage and have a blast.  The progressive fitness culture in Tulsa is led by a local multi-club fitness experience called Sky Fitness & Wellbeing.

Fitness is a vital part of Tulsa's identity

Fitness is a vital part of Tulsa’s identity

These clubs will blow your mind and you’ll be happy you paid them a visit.  So when in Tulsa, do as the locals do and get your workout in, frequent the parks and well maintained trails and head over to Sky to see what the buzz is all about!

4.  The Blue Dome District

The Blue Dome District is the center of downtown Tulsa's night life

The Blue Dome District is the center of downtown Tulsa’s night life

The word “emerging” comes to mind when I think of Tulsa as a whole, but that is definitely the case when I think of the Blue Dome District.  Named for the iconic blue dome building, this area is a vibrant hot spot for local entertainment seekers.  Concerts, festivals, food and fun are all just a couple steps away from wherever you happen to be!  Bars abound, bowling, dancing, great eating and the performing arts are all part of what Tulsa’s Blue Dome District – a must-see experience.

5.  Live Entertainment

The BOK Center is the centerpiece to Tulsa's vibrant live entertainment scene

The BOK Center is the centerpiece to Tulsa’s vibrant live entertainment scene

Cain's Ballroom is a Tulsa landmark for live entertainment

Cain’s Ballroom is a Tulsa landmark for live entertainment

Tulsa Ballet is a premier international company

Tulsa Ballet is a premier international company

My dogs Mommy & Fatty just love the many Tulsa parks and people they meet

My dogs Mommy & Fatty just love the many Tulsa parks and people they meet

The arts are a major aspect of Tulsa’s character.  Downtown Tulsa is the center of it all!  With great local bars playing up-and-coming acts nightly, to the Tulsa Ballet and the Tulsa Symphony, two world-class organizations that are both assessable and exceptional, Tulsa has something for everyone.  Financial contributions from art loving locals allow these performing arts organizations to recruit talent from the best of the best, not just nationally, but world-wide.  Historic Cain’s Ballroom and the Brady Theater offer excellent weekly live music options from indie artists, up-and-coming performers and those that have already owned the spotlight and are still touring strong.  The modern crown jewel of Tulsa’s entertainment culture is the BOK Center (Bank Of Oklahoma Center) located on the edge of downtown.  With easy access both in and out of the area, the BOK Center is busting with all of the most current and relevant entertainment offerings found anywhere in the United States.  In 2014 alone, their list of entertainment offerings has been mindblowing!  To give you an idea, within just the past couple of months the Eagles, One Direction, Katy Perry, KISS, One Republic, George Straight, Def Leppard, Motley Crue, Tom Petty, Pearl Jam, The Black Keys, Bruno Mars, Demi Levato, Cher, Alice Cooper and many many others are calling the BOK Center home for a night of live entertainment.  I personally make a point to see at least two shows every month at the BOK Center, it is simply the best indoor live entertainment venue in the United States.

Tulsa, Oklahoma has so many things to do, but these 5 are the ones that are not only relevant, but they’re  available and can be enjoyed year round by anyone who wants to experience the best that Tulsa has to offer.

I’ve lived in Tulsa for three years now and with every passing day this progressive, friendly and culturally aware city becomes more and more a part of me.  The music, the food, the people and the active lifestyle all play a role in the emergence of one of the Midwest’s best city experiences.  I hope you’ll pay Tulsa a visit and when you do, be sure to put my 5 essential experiences in Tulsa, Oklahoma at the top of your list.


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