Friday, September 16, 2011

i heart okc!

I have always enjoyed living in Oklahoma {for over half my life now}.  I am such a MidWestern girl.  My roots are in Iowa, and that's where all my extended family is, as well.  So Iowa has a special place in my heart, too.  But lately, I am falling more and more in love with Oklahoma, and especially Oklahoma City.

Admittedly, a big part of that has been my passionate love affair with the Oklahoma City Thunder.  There is probably nothing I enjoy doing in this great state more than heading downtown on a game day and watching my boys play.  I love the energy and the feeling of unity in and around the newly renamed Chesapeake Engery Arena, aka the ThunderDome.  In fact, there's really only ONE thing I want for my birthday this year {okay, that's an exaggeration, but this is what I want more than almost anything else}, and that is for this stupid NBA lockout to end and someone to take me to the New Year's Eve game {my birthday!}.  Floor seats, meeting James Harden, and a kiss from a cute boy at midnight would pretty much complete my fantasy for that night.  I'm just sayin'.

Aside from Thunder games, probably my favorite thing to do in OKC is go to Live On The Plaza the second Friday of every month.  The plaza district is an awesome little area of Oklahoma City over on the 1700 block of NW 16th.  It is full of great local shops, and lots of super cool and artsy people show up for Live On the Plaza.  It's some of the best people watching in the state, I promise. 

Of course, this time of year, I can't talk about things I like to do in Oklahoma without mentioning the State Fair!  Oh my word, how I love going to the fair!!!!!!!!  Talk about people watching.....duh.  Obviously, the fair is the BEST place for that, but in a whole different and not so cool and artsy way as at Live On The Plaza, ha!  And can we talk about the food, the animals {Iowa girl at heart, y'all -- I love looking at horses and cows and especially the baby pigs!}, the music, the rides {although I never really ride very many rides because I'm too poor for all that ;)}, and more!  Every year, I would say that I am at the fair at least four to seven of the ten days that it is here.  Did I mention I love it?!?

Talking about the fair makes me think about the Festival of the Arts that occurs every April in the heart of downtown OKC.  I have attended it pretty much every year for the past nine years or so, I believe.  It is always a great time of good food, cool art, and still more interesting people to see.

I already mentioned The Plaza District, but some of my other favorite areas in Oklahoma City include the new and slick Classen Curve {rePUBlic is the coolest place, so good!}, the awesome Western Avenue area {Cafe Nova on the weekends for good music, drinks, and dancing -- yes please}, and of course good old Bricktown.  The other day, I was in Bricktown doing a photo shoot, and as I watched all the people and heard live music playing and smelled delicious food from the restaurants, I literally felt my heart stir with love for this city!  Sounds ridiculous, I know.  But really.  Being in the midst of our not-too-big-not-too-small city makes me so happy!

Obviously, I can't talk about Oklahoma City without mentioning the places I love to shop here!  You all should know by now that I am a thrift store shopper, for real.  Of course, this means that I frequent Goodwill {and even have their discount card, that's how cool I am}, but since we're talking local, let me tell you three places to try.  The first two are thrift stores, and I'm sorry but I don't even really know their exact names, so I'll just tell you where they are located.  One is on the corner of NW 23rd and Council, and the other is on the corner of NW 23rd and MacArthur.  In fact, last night, I ran into the one on NW 23rd and MacArthur and spent about ten minutes and twenty-five  dollars and got two sweaters with the original price tags still on them {one was $49.00 and the other was $108.00 - one hundred and eight dollars!!!} among other things!!! :)  Anyway, the third place I want to mention isn't so much a thrift store, but more of an antique/vintage place.  It's called the Rink Gallery, and it's off of NW 36th on Rockwell.  I mostly find cool stuff for my house there.  Oh, and I've scored some sweet jewelry there as well! 

The one store I want to mention that isn't a thrift store is Tree and Leaf Clothing.  There are several really cool, local clothing shops in OKC, but Tree and Leaf is my fave!  Maybe because they make rad Thunder apparel, or maybe because they're so nice and chill.  Whatever it is, I am a fan. 

Oklahoma City has LOTS of really, really great restaurants, and I could make a long list of recommendations {maybe I'll have my friend B or Kathleen do a guest foodie post soon!}, but instead I'll tell you my top two faves.  First, I gotta shout out Saii, the yummiest sushi place in OKC, in my opinion.  Mmmmmm.  But my number one fave restaurant in Oklahoma City is an awesome little hole in the wall place called Bella Vista.  It is over on the south side off SW 59th on Western.  Seriously SO GOOD.  Go there.  But please don't expect anything fancy.  Just expect the most delicious food ever!  And thank me later.

So there you have it, a pretty comprehensive post all about why I <3 OKC.  I would love to know some of your favorite things about this awesome town, or your hometown or favorite city.  I hope you didn't get too bored with all my wordiness here.  Obviously, I can go on and on about my love for Oklahoma!


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