bmonthly March 2023

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2 bmonthly | MARCH 2023 stridebank .com 1415 SE Washington Blvd., Bartlesville, OK 74 006 918-333-0380 Market President Charles Allcott Vice President Victor Casey Happy St. Patrick’s Day from the Stride Family
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what’s inside...

5 Upfront 8 Profile: Chris Batchelder 12 Feature: The History of Reda Pump Armais Arutunoff “Mr. Americanism” 22 Feature Sponsor Story: The Red Apple 25 Kids Calendar 2 7 Chick-fil-A Events Calendar 30 Best of the Pets: Are You Ready to Vote?! 33 A Good Word: Talking About mental Health 34 Financial Planning: Planning for RMDs in 2023 36 Now You Know: The Winter Challenge 39 Looking Back: Women’s Clubs in Bartlesville 41 The Arts: An ART-Full Day in the ‘Ville 4 3 Arts & Entertainment: Ensembles, Encores & More! 47 Education: OKWU to Host Leadership Event 48 Out & About: Photos From Around Town 51 Bar tlesville’s Own: Coach Holbrook Testimonial 52 Funny You should Ask: Forget the Legend... The Real Story is Better 59 A Fresh Perspective: Of Delinquent Books... 61 Shining a Light: A Children’s Puppet Ministry Room At His Table Ministries 63 Sports: Bartlesville Bombers Vision has Grown into Practice Facility in the Mall 65 From the Heart: By Faith We Begin Legacies Last Beyond What Man has Made 67 On the Road: The Road Less Traveled 69 Business Spotlight: Copan’s Pie Princess 71 Once Upon a Time: On the Street Where He Lived 7 3 Area Businesses: Sippin’ Sweet! 77 Health & Wellness: Quality Medical Care 78 Let Freedom Ring: Colonel Sanders A Look at the Life of Harland David Sanders MARCH 2023 8 36 67 51 12 39 69 52 22 41 71 59 30 43 73 61 33 47 77 63 34 48 78 65 4 bmonthly | MARCH 2023 WHAT’S INSIDE


Welcome to March, friends and the start of spring. This is the month where you can have sunny skies and 75  degrees or a snow storm with 10 inches of snow and 20 degrees. This is also the month where trees start to bloom and by April we know why this part of the state is called Green Country.

One of the many things I love about this magazine is I get to pick the feature story, and this month I wanted to know the history of Reda Pump, which was started in 1930 by Armais Arutunoff. Actually he started BART Manufacturing in 1927, and with great success of his pumps he dissolved that company and started Reda which means (Russian Electrical Dynamo Arutunoff). I called on Mike Wilt to write this one and as he always does… he crushed it. Now the cover is a different animal. For me I believe the cover is the most important part of the magazine because it moves people to pick it up and want to know what’s inside. This cover was a tough one. Even though I had over 450 pictures to look at, none of them were moving me. I knew I wanted to bring the old building where it all started and Mr. Arutunoff together along with a picture of maybe the pump but could not find that one picture. With many late nights looking at pictures until 3 or 4 in the morning, I finally got the concept in my head and here is the finished product, which speaks loudly about Reda and the man who built this incredible company.

Another story that you will find so interesting was written by Debbie Neece about the history of bowling in Bartlesville. I love bowling and was actually the Arkansas Junior Champion at the age of 12. My highest score was 245 when I was 14. I got the love for the sport from my Mom, who was a very good bowler and a southpaw, too. I used to love watching her just sling that ball down the alley.

Just a reminder to everyone to start looking for our posts on Facebook and Instagram about the “Best of Pets” issue coming up in April. This issue has turned out to be almost as big as the Baby New Year one. Be ready to vote on your favorite pets, because the most votes on Facebook will have a full page inside the magazine. A panel of 9 judges will pick the pet who will grace the cover of our April Issue.

I want to end my Upfront on what the month of March means to me and the

significance of this month. In last month’s issue I wrote a two-page story called “Best Friends,” where I talked about the friendship that Christy and I started in 1985 as young 16 year olds. I described the significance of us meeting each other and becoming high school sweethearts. If you look at your own life, who is your best friend? Who is that one person that knows you better than you know yourself and loves you no matter what? In March of 2007, I was living in an 850-squarefoot apartment downtown on 6th Street. I had lived there for the last six months after Christy kicked me out of the house because of my cocaine addiction. At that  time I was doing better but still relapsing, struggling to keep our marriage together, and trying to get totally clean. Her kids were with their dad for spring break, so it was just Christy and 9-month-old Grace at the house by themselves.

Christy had watched a show on TBN that had deeply touched her heart. God had spoken to her and answered the many prayers she had prayed for me. She believed that God was telling her to give me one more chance and to let me move back into the house. If she didn’t do this, how would she ever know? By her faith she called me the next day and said “I’m going to let you move back in the house.” That week in March, I moved back in the house and started the family that we had dreamed of before the enemy almost destroyed my life and our marriage. Since that week God took every want, need, and desire away from me to do drugs. This March I will be celebrating 16 years of being clean and off cocaine. The reason is because Christy listened to her heart and believed in me enough to give me that one chance and today I (we) give all the praise to God. God bless, Keith

Volume XIV

Issue III

Bartlesville Monthly Magazine is published by ENGEL


Offices located in Downtown Bartlesville in the historic Price Tower 510 Dewey Ave, Suite 400, Bartlesville, OK 74003 P.O. Box 603, Bartlesville, OK 74005

Publisher Brian Engel


Copper Cup Images

Director of Sales & Marketing

Keith McPhail

Community Liaison

Christy McPhail

Project Manager

Andrea Whitchurch


Shelley Greene Stewart

Delivery and Distribution Tim Hudson

Calendar/Social Media

Contributing Writers

Debbie Neece, Kay Little, Kelly Bland, Lori Kroh, Jay Hastings, Sarah Leslie Gagan, Brent Taylor, Lori Just, Keith McPhail, Jay Webster, Abigail Singrey, Randy Standridge, Rita Thurman Barnes, Maria Gus, Mike Wilt

Contributing Photographers

Bartlesville Area History Musuem

Becky Sewell Burch, Larry Thrash

Amanda Stratford Photography

Kids Calendar

Jessica Smith All

Creative concept by Keith and Christy McPhail

Design by Copper Cup Images

look at the history of REDA Pump.
Rights Reserved.
part of this publication may be reproduced, copied or otherwise, without prior permission of Bartlesville Monthly, Inc.
& Editor of Bartlesville Monthly Magazine reserves the right to reject any content or advertisement in this publication.
MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 5 UPFRONT
Managing Editors Keith & Christy McPhail.

went on to say they had never seen anything like

Good job team!

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Experienced, Honest, Local

Chris Batchelder All Roads Lead Back Home

Chris Batchelder has lived several places during his lifetime, Stillwater, Houston, Fort Worth, but it was his hometown of Bartlesville that kept drawing him back. As Vice President of the Resident Recruitment Program at the Bartlesville Development Authority, Chris and his family have fallen in love with Bartlesville, and admit this time, they are here for life.

Born in Bartlesville in 1973, Chris grew up attending Wayside Elementary School, Limestone Elementary, Central Junior High, Mid-High School, and Bartlesville High School. His father worked for Phillips 66. Chris says Bartlesville was a fantastic place to grow up. The town had many great community leaders and businessmen who modeled success in the 70s and 80s that looking back now, Chris can comparatively see the community once again thriving with strong leadership, just as it had during his childhood.

After high school graduation, Chris attended Oklahoma State University, where he met his wife, Angie, whom he would marry in December 1995. Chris majored in marketing and Angie majored in journalism. They started their married life together in Houston, where Chris worked for Foley’s department store. In March of 1998, after weeks of bedrest due to pregnancy complications, Angie gave birth to twin girls, born 8 weeks premature, requiring a 2-month stay in the neonatal intensive care unit. Fortunately, the Batchelder twins, Abbey and Emily, quickly overcame their premature birth with no lasting health conditions and continue to lead normal, healthy lives today.

After the girls were home from the hospital, Chris and Angie felt the need to be closer to family and began to look for employment opportunities. In August

of 1998, Chris accepted a position in Stillwater working with the OSU Foundation, raising money for the OSU Alumni Association. They enjoyed being back in Oklahoma and loved their years in Stillwater working on the OSU campus.

In 2004 Chris attended an OSU basketball game with family friend, Glenn Bonner, who was in the process of starting a new bank in Bartlesville. Glenn started First Bartlesville Bank and recruited Chris to be part of his team. The Batchelder’s moved to Bartlesville in May 2004, and Chris became a key player in building First Bartlesville Bank utilizing his marketing skills and ability to promote the bank by being the voice and face of the bank. In 2005, the Batchelder’s welcomed their son Brady to the family.

In March of 2006, Chris left First Bartlesville Bank, as it was in the process of being sold to BancFirst, and became a loan officer with Arvest Bank. In May of 2007, Chris moved his family to Stillwater to start two new Arvest branches. He enjoyed the experience of developing new banking teams and starting banking enterprises from the ground up. During this time, Chris maintained his OSU connections with the Alumni Association.

In 2012, the board of the OSU Alumni Association reached out to Chris, asking him to consider the position of CEO of the Alumni Association, filling the vacancy created by the retiring CEO of over 40 years. He was honored to become the CEO Elect of the OSU Alumni

8 bmonthly | MARCH 2023 PROFILE

Association, working for approximately one year with the outgoing CEO, Larry Shell, who was a wonderful mentor to Chris. Chris became the CEO in the fall of 2013, and immensely enjoyed his time there.

In 2018, Chris was so successful at leading and growing the alumni association that he took a leap into self-employment and became a traveling consultant, helping other associations grow. At this time, both daughters were attending Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas, so Chris and Angie felt it was logical to move to Fort Worth, Texas.

Chris loved consulting with his clients, but by the fall of 2019, he decided the lonely traveling life was not for him. Wired for teamwork, he missed working with people, so Chris began looking for job opportunities. When calling his good friend Kyle Hubbard to get his permission to use him as a reference, Kyle proposed that Chris move back to Bartlesville to work with him at Arvest again. After careful consideration, the Batchelder family moved back to Bartlesville in January of 2020. Just weeks later, the COVID19 pandemic began, and Chris became part of the Arvest COVID response team, treading into unknown waters making decisions regarding banking during a pandemic.

Chris and Angie were both active in the Bartlesville community when they had lived here previously, and picked up their community service right where they left off. Chris has been involved with both the Bartlesville and Stillwater public school foundations, Leadership Bartlesville, the Bartlesville Sports Commission, Hillcrest Country Club, among numerous other civic endeavors. Both Chris and Angie are active with East Cross Methodist Church and also enjoy attending any and all Bruin sporting events, especially when their son Brady is playing football. Chris and Angie both enjoy participating in athletics, including golf and tennis, and enjoy traveling to visit their now grown daughters and other family members. Chris is currently the incoming president of the Bartlesville Public School Foundation, and serves as the Board Chair for the Bartlesville Sports Commission, an organization he helped found in 2006.

It was early 2020 when Chris connected with Bartlesville Development Authority President David Wood and was asked to join their trustees. Chris began working closely with the BDA at this time, working on their pandemic response and various operations.

In October 2021, Chris left Arvest and joined the Bartlesville Development Authority as the Vice President of Business Development, which allowed him to serve the community in a much broader capacity. He loves his position and is passionate about drawing people and businesses to our special city.

According to Chris, Bartlesville is a very “hot” place to be right now. The employers are doing well, the cost of living is affordable, the employee pool is great, and the community is blessed with overwhelming philanthropy.

Regarding Bartlesville, Chris states, “This is my third time to live here and you know, I’ve tried to trick myself twice now into leaving and I just keep getting drawn back. The reason for that is because of what a special

place to live this is. It really is kind of a little hamlet on the plains. You don’t know how to how to describe it to people, but once you come and spend some time here, you want to live here. We hear stories all the time about Phillips or ConocoPhillips interns that kind of groan when they get assigned to Bartlesville, but when it comes time for them to do their shifts in Houston or somewhere else, they absolutely can’t wait to come back to Bartlesville. That’s just kind of what this community does, it really embraces you and makes you want to be here and live here. I can’t think of any reason why we would want to leave again. It’s our home. When we got back here in in January of 2020, despite COVID, despite everything that was happening around us, it was like we had never left. We had been gone 13 years and it may as well have been 13 hours. It felt like we just stepped right back into our old life and I’m telling you, you just don’t get that feeling everywhere.”

With the Bartlesville Development Authority, Chris is proud to spend time sharing Bartlesville’s uniqueness with prospective businesses and residents. One of the recent projects he is most proud of is the resident relocation program for employees who choose to relocate to Bartlesville and work locally for a participating employer. A $10,000 housing stipend is awarded to an employee that relocates to Bartlesville, or a $20,000 stipend for an employee to build a home in Bartlesville. The program has been really successful so far in attracting new residents to the area.

The BDA has many irons in the fire right now, to grow and improve the community. Chris states this is a great time to be in Bartlesville. He loves how incredibly caring and concerned the people are towards each other, and how unique we are to have the large number of non-profit organizations here.

Chris is perhaps one of Bartlesville’s greatest cheerleaders as he works passionately to improve and grow our community. He works tirelessly to improve our quality of life and make our community a place anyone would love to call home. We are stronger because you are here among us, Chris, thank you for representing us well!

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The History of REDA Pump

Armais Arutunoff “Mr. Americanism”



Saturday, May 23, 1970

3 p.m.

Downtown Bartlesville

The corner of Frank Phillips Blvd. and Johnstone Ave.

In the shade of a hand-held umbrella, a humble gentleman sits in a folding chair atop a parade review stand. One month shy of his seventy-seventh birthday and properly attired in suit and tie, the bespectacled businessman is consumed by conflicting thoughts and emotions. Yes, he loves parades, especially those that celebrate America. Yet, he is somewhat uncomfortable being the reason for the parade. Yes, he is happy to be surrounded by family and friends, but he sorely misses his wife who passed away a short five months earlier. As he gazes at the assembled throng of well-wishers, his mind flashes back through 53 years of marriage. The aching pain of his loss is still fresh and acute. In the midst of revelry and celebration, he wrestles with simultaneous feelings of joy and sadness. Yes, he is proud of his accomplishments as an inventor, as the founder and president of a lucrative manufacturing company, as a charitable community leader, and as a tireless promoter of free enterprise. But he credits all of his success and fortune to God.

He is affectionately called “Mr. Americanism” for his unabashed love for and devotion to the United States of America. Such a sobriquet would be an honor for any man. But, on this day, it is so very appropriate for this particular man… from Russia.

Beginnings  1893-1930

One of eight children, Armais Arutunoff (pronounced r-MYus; r-TOON-off) was born on June 21, 1893 in Tiflis (Tbilisi today), Russia, a small town along the banks of the Kura River south of the Greater Caucasus Mountains. The son of a soap manufacturer, Arutunoff was educated in Tiflis. He was then graduated from the Polytechnic Institute of Petrograd, one of the top research universities for applied physics, mathematics, and multifaceted engineering studies. He was just 23 years old when he invented the electrical submergible motor in 1916 and embarked on forming his own company – Russki Electro Dvigatel Arutunova (REDA). However, the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 did not foster an environment favorable for industrial development. Armais and his wife, Kera (KEE-ruh), knew they had to leave. With their infant son, Sergei, hidden between two silk pillows, the

Armais and Kera Arutunoff
Another day at REDA Pump

young family began their escape. Facing a two-hour wait time for an outbound train, they decided to take a sleigh ride. When they returned to the station, they found themselves the lone survivors of a massacre of more than 300 Russians.

Feeling both fortunate and afraid, they pressed on.

Kera and Sergei (SIR-gay) settled in Constantinople (Istanbul today) while Armais traveled on to Germany to establish a manufacturing business. However, he quickly learned that government officials had other plans for him – to be the country’s trade representative to the new Soviet Republic. Horrified by the thought of returning to the country he had fled, Arutunoff politely declined the offer and tactfully told the Germans that they did not fully understand how the Russians were truly evil people. He even gave them graphic examples of Russian brutality, which he had seen with his own eyes. The Germans were unmoved.

“Dr. Arutunoff,” said one official. “We must be cosmopolitan about this. In this world, there are people who get killed and people who do the killing. And you are far, far too wise not to know the difference.”

While he appreciated the offer, “ethically and morally” he again declined.

“You disappointment me!” shouted the angry German as he stomped out of the room.

The next morning, Arutunoff discovered the bank loan for his new company had been cancelled. Disheartened, distraught, and destitute, he bowed his head.

“I must pray…because the Good Lord is in charge of everything,” he said.

His prayers were soon answered as he encountered an old friend who helped him with financing.

Arutunoff successfully manufactured his submergible electric motor and pump for use in oil well pumping and dewatering mines and ships. But unstable economic conditions following World War I influenced him to travel to the United States. Now a family of four following the addition of a daughter, Anait (n-eye-EAT), the Arutunoffs arrive at Ellis Island in 1923. Their first stop was Michigan followed by a move to Los Angeles, where the first American REDA pumps were built.

Armais Arutunoff posing with one of his many inventions
The REDA Pump main facility

Arutunoff struggled to convince major electrical companies and financial backers that his device was worth the investment. Many scoffed at the idea believing the unit was “impossible under the laws of electronics.” Confident in his invention but restless in his lack of success, Arutunoff took advantage of a large oil conference being held in L.A. in January of 1926. He decided to call on an executive with an eight-year-old oil company from Oklahoma.

Brothers Frank and L.E. Phillips, founders of Phillips Petroleum Company in 1917, had traveled by train to attend the sixth annual conference of the American Petroleum Institute at the Biltmore Hotel. One of the men in the Phillips’ cadre was Clyde Alexander, vice president and general manager. Like many others in the oil and gas industry, Alexander was aggravated by the need to abandon wells due to excessive invading water. He was also irritated by the inability of some pumps to reach oil lying at great depths. Intrigued upon hearing about this Russian and his invention, Alexander agreed to a meeting.

The 32-year-old Arutunoff took Alexander to an oil field on the outskirts of the city and demonstrated his electrical submergible pump. Alexander was captivated. He rushed back to the Biltmore to inform his colleagues. They quickly realized how Arutunoff’s contraption could revolutionize deep-well pumping.

Having reached an agreement with Arutunoff, Alexander ordered oil well tests to be conducted in Kansas. The success of the tests led to the formation of Bart Manufacturing Company in 1927. Arutunoff brought his family to Bartlesville that same year. Along with a handful of employees, Arutunoff led Bart Manufacturing in the production and installation of submergible pumps in the El Dorado Field near Burns, Kansas, some 35 miles northeast of Wichita. It was the very first electrical submergible pumping equipment to be used in an oil well. News of the pump’s success created quite a stir in the oil patch.

News of the foreign inventor’s success also created quite the unfavorable stir in some corners of Washington D.C. There were whispers and mumblings that this Russian immigrant had yet to become a U.S. citizen. And despite his position with Bart Manufacturing, some in the nation’s capital thought he could become “a liability” and have to leave the country. Eventually,

Two of the many oil drills invented by Armais

that sentiment was tamped down, and Arutunoff was lauded as a “national treasure.” He was publicly encouraged to remain here and to become a citizen, which he did in 1928.



After three successful years, the Bart Manufacturing Company was set to be dissolved in January of 1930. Ready to take its place was the Russian Electrical Dynamo of Arutunoff (REDA) Company. However, money needed to be raised to keep the firm in Bartlesville.

On Wednesday, January 15, Clyde Alexander, in his role as president of the chamber of commerce, hosted an elk steak dinner at the Maire Hotel (City Hall today) for 60 business and professional men. He told the assembled crowd the city had a tremendous opportunity to invest in and build up an industry that would be one of the largest employers of high-class, trained labor in Oklahoma. His plan? To sell $350,000 worth of stock (just over $6 million today) to Bartlesville investors.

“Other communities stand ready to finance the proposition if we fail,” Alexander said. “The Reda oil well pump is a patented device that is revolutionizing the business of recovering oil from run-down wells. The manufacturing price is cheap, and the return on the investment promises to be enormous.”

After only one week, over 767 citizens bought 16,000 shares for $10 each. A remarkable feat at any time, but the overwhelming response came during the worst blizzard to hit Bartlesville in 26 years. The front page of the local newspaper contained daily articles that chronicled harrowingly large snowfalls and (prewind chill) temperatures far below zero.

As the brutal Oklahoma winter slowly faded out, more money poured in. Two months later – and during far better weather – REDA Pump Company was born on March 18, 1930 with 15 employees and a 50-foot by 125-foot facility.

The company grew steadily under Arutunoff’s personal leadership as president and chairman. Locally, he had a reputation for being the first to arrive and the last to leave. And, he worked to create a “team/family environment” with annual employee picnics in Johnstone Park, Christmas ham presentations, and

REDA Pump work floor A REDA employee hanging oil pump parts
Armais Arutunoff posing with employees at REDA’s Annual Employee Picnic. Johnstone Park, Bartlesville, Oklahoma

holiday events for employees and their families. He was also an active supporter of veteran and patriotic organizations as well as a generous philanthropist. Outside of Bartlesville and throughout the petroleum industry, REDA became known for quality and for being a dominant factor in the manufacturing of deep-well pumping equipment. By 1938, it was estimated that two percent of all oil produced in the U.S. was lifted by an Arutunoff pump.

During the World War II years, REDA produced Navy equipment and filled numerous other defense contracts. In 1947, the domestic water well pumping system was introduced and the company began building fractional horsepower units. This allowed REDA to offer a complete line of products for almost any pumping need, be it for gasoline, brine, oil, water, chemicals, or jet fuel.

By 1955, the company’s presence had grown to 455 employees and an 180,000-square-foot facility. Throughout the global marketplace, REDA pumps were considered the “Cadillacs” of the fluid lifting industry.

In 1969, Arutunoff sold REDA to TRW, Inc. of Cleveland, OH. Proving that his renowned foresight had not waned in 76 years, Arutunoff predicted the new management would try to make “improvements” but ultimately would “mess things up and hire me back as a consultant in a year or two.”

And that is exactly what happened.

Arutunoff Appreciation Day

May 23, 1970

With the pages of history having been turned, the Bartlesville community deemed it fitting and proper to honor a man – a Russia native, no less – who had planted himself and his family some four decades earlier. On a glorious, sun-splashed day, the streets of downtown were teeming with jubilant spectators as some 60 floats and multiple bands paraded down Frank Phillips Blvd. Many of the floats depicted the history of the REDA company. Others were proudly decorated in red, white, and blue. One attendee remarked there had never been so many American flags witnessed in a Bartlesville parade. With an

May 23, 1970. Arutunoff Appreciation Day Parade
Armais Arutunoff at his 75th birthday party

elevated view of the procession, Arutunoff’s heart swelled upon seeing the affectionate display of admiration and adoration.

The Oklahoma State Senate and House of Representatives passed a resolution honoring Arutunoff as an “Outstanding Oklahoman whose contributions and personal qualities are an inspiration and a source of pride to all the citizens of this state.”

Later that evening, the man from a small Russian village situated between the Black and Caspian Seas was honored during a dignitary dinner at the American Legion building. He was presented with a gold-plated key to the city and made honorary mayor for 24 hours. Arutunoff humbly bowed his head when a bronze plaque was unveiled. The inscription read: “Presented to Armais Arutunoff, whose love for his land shines from his heart, rings in his words, and girds his daily life – an inspiration to us all. In gratitude from his fellow citizens of Bartlesville, Oklahoma.”

Many times throughout his life, Arutunoff talked of how, in 1923, he and his wife arrived in the United States with their fouryear-old son and their little one-year-old daughter.

“As to the millions of others, before and after my arrival, this country has been good to me, and I can never thank God enough for its existence. Try as I may, I cannot perform services of such value as to repay this wonderful country for granting me the sanctuary and the blessings of freedom and citizenship.”

A holder of over 90 patents, including the Electrodrill, which made it possible for scientists to probe the secrets of the Antarctic, Arutunoff went on to be inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 1974.

Farewell, Thou Good and Faithful Servant

February 1978

The bitter Oklahoma wind blew outside the local hospital. But conditions were tame compared to the blizzard 48 years earlier when shares of stock were being sold to keep the REDA Company in Bartlesville. Now at the age of 84, Armais Arutunoff rested comfortably in a medical bed.

“He was dying, but he was not suffering,” said Anatoly “Toly” Arutunoff, the third child and the only member of the family born in America in 1936, six years after the founding of REDA.

“My father believed in the Lord Jesus. It was so fundamental to him. He said that he had done well enough on this earth, but he missed his wife. And he had some questions he wanted to ask God because he didn’t think all three of Newton’s laws (of motion) were exactly right.”

Armais Arutunoff peacefully passed away at 4:45 a.m. on Tuesday, February 28.

While his scientific contributions were remarkable, it was Arutunoff’s genuine humility and honesty that made him so well loved in Bartlesville.


One hundred years after he arrived in America and 93 years after REDA was founded, Arutunoff’s legacy continues in the form of Schlumberger. The Bartlesville Product Center is located at 509 W. Hensley Blvd., just west of the railroad tracks downtown.

As mentioned previously, Armais and Kera (also known as Claudia) were parents of three children.

Born in Russia in 1919, Sergei Arutunoff was a graduate of the Black Fox Military Academy (CA) and the University of Southern California where he majored in electrical engineering. He served in the Adjutant General’s Department during World War II and spent considerable time in the South Pacific including the second

Armais Arutunoff in his office

wave in the battle of Luzon in the Philippines. For many years, he served as executive vice president and comptroller for REDA Pump. He passed away in 2000 at the age of 80, leaving behind wife Margaret, two children, Christopher and Christina, and five grandchildren.

Born in Germany in 1922, Anait Arutunoff was a pioneer in art holography. She was married to Ralph L. Stevens for 57 years and together the couple had two children, Kyra (Kiki) Stephens Gebhardt and Randolph (Rocky) Stephens. Anait passed away in 1998.

Anatoly Arutunoff was born in Tulsa in 1936. At the age of 15, he graduated from College High School in Bartlesville in 1952. He went

on to earn degrees in several different subjects including both a master’s degree and a doctorate. Toly, as he has been known from a very early age, became “an amateur road racer, raconteur, and car guy extraordinaire.” He also authored two books and founded the first Ferrari dealership in Tulsa. Now age 86, Toly resides in Tulsa with his wife Karen.

After having many different owners over the course of many years, the Arutunoff home – a 5,800-square-foot English Tudor mansion at 1200 Cherokee Avenue– is back in the family. Kiki, Armais and Kera’s granddaughter and Anait’s daughter, purchased the home in 2014.

The REDA Pump main facility, 1955
The Arutunoff Home Sergei Arutunoff Anait Arutunoff Anatoly Arutunoff Armais Artunoff during the Arutunoff Appreciation Day Parade, 1970
May 23, 1970. Arutunoff Appreciation Day Parade

The Red Apple A

Look at The Red Apple Sports Center Legacy

Ted Schwermer was an avid bowler and golfer, and an outstanding entrepreneur with his business fingers in many pies. His most notable business interests were TECO Appliances and the Red Apple Sports Center, which he opened at 1414 S.E. Washington Blvd in 1976, with Morris Starr as manager. During Red Apple’s 46 years of bowling history, four Oklahoma Bowling Hall of Famers have been named from Bartlesville: Burr Reynolds (1976), Mary Butcher (1988), Bruce Slankard (1998) and Tom Crawford (2012). In addition, Red Apple Sports Center has been a stepping-stone to establishing several pro-bowling careers.

About the age of six, Tom Crawford picked up his first bowling ball in Kentucky, where his father worked at the Phillips 66 plastic plant and his mother worked at the Ebonite Bowling Ball Factory. When the family transferred to Bartlesville, sixth grader Tom participated in a youth league at the 12-lane Phillips Bowling Alley in the Adams Building on Keeler Avenue. With countless 300 games, 20+ 800 series scores and several championships to his credit, Tom still bowls at the Red Apple lanes on a regular basis.

The Red Apple Sports Center has been a family affair for decades. Charles Ford Sr. began bowling in Wichita, KS and, at 83-years young, he still bowls in a Red Apple league several times a week. Charles “Chuck” Ford Jr. purchased the Red Apple Pro Shop in 2007, took over the day-to-day Red Apple operations in 2012 and bowls in a weekly league. And, now, the third Ford generation has taken the bowling scene by the horns.

While most tots were learning to read, Chuck’s youngest of nine children, Trey Ford was a student of the sport of bowling

and his tender aged devotion has paid off. By the age of 8, Trey was bowling 200 point games; and, by 13, scored his first 300 game, sparking a competitive spirit that has become a wild fire and brought him to the Professional Bowling Association. There is no rearview mirror for Trey; his future is full steam ahead. He just signed a contract with the “Brands of Brunswick” and competes on the PBA Tour.

“Team Ford” was derailed when Trey’s sister, Alexandria, experienced a back injury and sidelined her bowling career for a college education. However, her bowling accomplishments have been notable… she was named Oklahoma Bowler of the Year in 2014, 2017 and 2018 and coached Bartlesville’s boys’ bowling team to a regional title in 2018. Additionally, Trey and Alexandria share their bowling journeys on their YouTube and Instagram accounts.

The Red Apple Sports Center is a full service bowling facility with a Pro Shop and Gametime Pizza on site. Although semiretired, Terry Schwermer can be found in the office most mornings and Chuck Ford continues the Red Apple Legacy as operations manager inspiring the next generation of pro-bowlers.

Morris Starr shifted his bowling management to Tulsa’s Riverlanes in 1979, opening the path for Ted’s son, Terry Schwermer to become the owner/operator from 1980 to 2000. Paul Hood briefly owned Red Apple before selling to Bo Summers and Jeff Holley in 2004; now solely owned by Bo Summers.

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 23 SERVING NE OKLAHOMA + NATIONWIDE JOINING FORCES WWW.INSUREWITHPHOENIX.COM 316 SE Shawnee Bartlesville, OK 74003 (918) 336-5460 or (918) 333-5151
24 bmonthly | MARCH 2023


OKWU Softball vs Jarvis Christian

7 PM; OKWU Softball Fields

Shamrock the Ville

9 AM; Downtown Bartlesville

This annual 5K & Fun Run in Bartlesville, OK, supports Catholic Charities Mary Martha Outreach.

OKWU Softball vs American Christian

9 AM; OKWU Softball Fields

Girls Varsity Bruin Tennis vs Bartlesville JV

9 AM; Bruin Tennis Courts

OKWU Softball vs Mid America Nazarene

2 & 4 PM; OKWU Softball Fields

Bruin Slow Pitch Softball vs Barnsdall

5 PM; Bruin Softball Fields

Bruin Soccer vs Tulsa Will Rogers

4:30 PM; Custer Stadium (JV/G)

4:30 PM; Custer Stadium (JV/B)

6 PM; Custer Stadium (V/G)

8 PM; Custer Stadium (V/B)

Dewey Flea Market and Bartlesville Beyond Boutique Market

10 AM; Washington County Fair Grounds

Come and shop some new and repurposed items with some of the finest vendors. Admission is FREE

OKWU Baseball vs St Mary

12 & 3 PM; OKWU Baseball Fields


OWKU Tennis Matches

10 AM; OKWU Tennis Courts

Bruin Varsity Tennis vs Bartlesville JV

9 AM; Bruin Tennis Courts

OWKU Tennis Matches

11 AM; OKWU Tennis Courts

Mens OWKU Tennis Matches

11 AM; OKWU Tennis Courts

Bruin Varsity Tennis vs Bartlesville JV

9 AM; Bruin Tennis Courts

Mens OWKU Tennis Matches

10 AM; OKWU Tennis Courts

Bruin Slow Pitch Softball vs Sperry

5 PM; Bruin Softball Fields

Bruin Soccer vs Rogers

6 PM; Custer Stadium (V/G)

8 PM; Custer Stadium (V/B)

Bruin Soccer vs Bixby

BPS Parent/Teacher Conference

All Day; Disctict-Wide

OKWU Baseball vs St Mary

2 PM; OKWU Baseball Fields

Spring Break March 13-17; District-Wide

OKWU Softball vs McPherson

2 & 4 PM; OKWU Softball Fields

OKWU Baseball vs Southwestern

2 PM; OKWU Baseball Fields

4:30 PM; Custer Stadium (JV/G)

4:30 PM; Custer Stadium (JV/B)

6 PM; Custer Stadium (V/G)

8 PM; Custer Stadium (V/B)

Bruin Soccer vs Ponca

4:30 PM; Custer Stadium (JV/G)

4:30 PM; Custer Stadium (JV/B)

6 PM; Custer Stadium (V/G)

8 PM; Custer Stadium (V/B)

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 25
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Wed, Mar 1

Times Vary

Online Auction to Benefit

Elder Care

This event runs online until March 30th. Jerry Poppenhouse, world photographer, donated a collection of his photographic art to Elder Care. Elder Care will host an online auction beginning January 4, 2023, featuring nine Poppenhouse photographic pieces. All proceeds from the auction will benefit Elder Care. Values range from $150 - $750 and will remain available to bidders until the online auction ends on March 30, 2023, or until an item is purchased using the Buy-it-now option. To learn more about the auction, go to online-artwork-auction/

8:30 AM

BAHM Exhibit

Bartlesville Area History Museum

401 S Johnstone Ave

Each season brings something new to the Bartlesville Area History Museum’s Pioneer Gallery. This Winter, BAHM is proud to present: A 50,000-Foot View: The Stratospheric Rise of Aviation in Washington County. On display from January 3rd through March 31st, the exhibit takes visitors on a journey exploring the unique and impressive history of Aviation in Washington County. The exhibit will feature various artifacts from Washington County’s aviation endeavors over the years. In addition, youngsters and the “young at heart” may enjoy our history of aviation coloring station. If you have questions, you may reach Bartlesville Area History Museum staff at (918) 338-4290 or

12:30 PM

Tai Chi with Bee

Unity Square

300 SE Adams Blvd.

Tai Chi with Bee is held on Wednesdays at 12:30 pm in Meeting Room A at BPL.

Tai Chi will help improve your balance and wellness. This class is free and open to the public!

6:45 PM

ELL Conversation Class

Bartlesville Public Library

600 S Johnstone Ave.

5:30 PM

Free Citizenship Class

Bartlesville Public Library

600 S Johnstone Ave.

Citizenship classes are held on Tuesdays at 6pm, Wednesdays at 5:30pm, and Thursdays at 11am on the second floor of the Bartlesville Public Library in the Literacy Services office. These classes are FREE and open to the public. Please contact the Bartlesville Literacy Services office at 918.338.4179 for more information.

6 PM

Dance ’N Define with Tarah

Unity Square

300 SE Adams Blvd.

Dance ‘N Define with Tarah is held outside on the Stage at Unity Square on Wednesdays at 6pm. It is free and open to the public. This fitness program incorporates a mixture of dance, core work, and lightweight/full body toning.

ELL Conversation classes are held on Tuesdays at 5pm and Thursdays at 10am on the second floor of the Bartlesville Public Library in the Literacy Services office. These classes are FREE and open to the public. Please contact the Bartlesville Literacy Services office at 918.338.4179 for more information.

Thu, Mar 2

7 PM Xtreme Hip Hop with Tarah Unity Square

300 SE Adams Blvd.

This class series is held outside on the Stage at Unity Square on Thursdays at 7pm. It is free and open to the public. This class is a step up from the traditional cardio step class. Tarah will teach basic to complex moves on a raised fitness step to hip hop beats. Beginners are welcome to come learn and practice the moves without a raised step until they are ready. Please bring a full-size 43” wide step, which can be checked out from BPL.

Sat, Mar 4

9 AM

ShamRock The ‘Ville 5K and Fun Run Unity Square

1845 SW 4th 74003

6 PM

Zumba with Tarah

Unity Square

300 SE Adams Blvd.

Zumba is held every Thursday outside (on the stage) at the Tower Center at Unity Square, which is next door to the Library. This class is free and open to the public. Zumba is a fitness program that combines Latin and international music with dance moves. It incorporates interval training to help improve cardiovascular fitness. Please bring your own water bottle.

Shamrock the ‘Ville is a St. Patrick’s Day celebration in downtown Bartlesville. Festivities include a 5K race, 1 mi. Fun Run, prizes and plenty of great costumes. All to benefit Mary Martha Outreach, a non-profit organization that provides necessary items to those in need. The 5K course is certified by USATF and winds through historic downtown Bartlesville. The 5K run is a chip-timed race with prizes to the top 3 racers (overall and by age/gender). The 1 mi. Fun Run is not timed. Awards will be given to the 5K overall male and female winners, as well as the top 3 5K racers in each age and gender group. Race is as scheduled, rain or shine. Extreme circumstances may lead to a cancellation, in which case your entry fee will be used as a donation to Mary Martha Outreach. For more information, go to https://www.

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 27
Know of an upcoming event you would like to see on our calendar? Visit us at for a free listing!


To learn more, visit

2 PM Samaritan Counseling Cornhole Tournament

Cooper Mill & Brewing Company

200 S Dewey Ave

Previously, Samaritan has held the Sexual Abuse Fundraising Event (S.A.F.E. breakfast) and Daughters of Lot Breakfast event. This would have been our 20th year for that event, but this year’s newly-themed event will still have the same important purpose as before. Our goal is to provide hope and a brighter future for those who have been sexually and/or physically abused. A portion of the event revenue will be designated to our SAFE Subsidy, which helps provide sessions for children, women and men who have or are currently experiencing sexual and/ or physical abuse. Support this cause and those who so desperately need counseling and mental health support in one of three ways: by becoming one of our valued event sponsors, signing up a team for the cornhole tournament, or by simply making a monetary donation. For more information, visit our Facebook page by searching Samaritan Counseling & Growth Center, Inc.

8 PM

History And Haunts At The Dewey Hotel

Dewey Hotel Museum

801 N Delaware St., Dewey

Spend an evening at the Dewey Hotel. They will go over some of the hotel’s unique histories and take a lantern guided small group tour. You will go into some of the rooms, usually blocked off access to guests. Ready for your unique supernatural encounter? Tours are held every Saturday at 8pm.

Mon, Mar 6

5:30 PM

Free Spanish Classes

Bartlesville Public Library

600 S Johnstone Ave.

Free Spanish Class every Monday evening at 5:30pm in Meeting Room B on the first floor of the Bartlesville Public Library. This class is free and open to the public. Please contact the Bartlesville Literacy Services office at 918.338.4179 if you have any questions.

6 PM

Pound with Tarah

Unity Square

Tue, Mar 7

12 PM

Watercolor Class for Beginners

Bartlesville Art Association

Jim Buchan returns to BAA for a threehour guided watercolor class. The class is tailored for beginning watercolor painters, but ALL levels are welcome. Jim will demo each step and then give participating artists time to do that step on their own painting.  Students will learn watercolor techniques while they complete one painting and have a great time in a casual atmosphere! This class is for adults including high school age. More information and a supply list will be furnished after you register. Jim has been painting in watercolors for 50 years, and has studied with nationally known artists. Check out his website at

5:15 PM

Best You Workout Challenge

Bartlesville Public Library

600 S Johnstone Ave.

This workout challenge will give you the opportunity to improve your overall health with a calendar of minichallenges to complete with support. This class is FREE and open to the public. It is held on Tuesdays at 5:15pm in Meeting Room A at the Bartlesville Public Library. Please bring a mat and water bottle.

6 PM Cheerfit with Macie

Bartlesville Public Library

600 S Johnstone Ave.

6:30 PM

Uncork Your Support

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church

210 E 9th St.

It’s all Greek to me in 2023! Please join us in support of the Lowe Family Young Scholars Program for our annual wine tasting and food sampling event on March 4, 2023 at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church. We look forward to seeing you there for this Greek themed evening!

300 SE Adams Blvd.

Pound is a full-body workout that combines cardio, conditioning, and strength training with yoga and Pilatesinspired movements. Pound uses lightly weighted drumsticks engineered specifically for exercising. It is designed for all fitness levels. This class is free and open to the public. Bring water, mat, and drumsticks (if you have some). A limited number of drumsticks will be available at the class.

This class series is held on Tuesdays at 6pm. This class is free and open to the public. No prior cheer or dance experience is required and there is no jumping, stunting, or tumbling involved! Cheerfit Dance is a total body, moodboosting workout. Sweat, sculpt, and dance it out with a combination of cardio exercises, alongside cheer and pom-inspired choreography!

6 PM Johnstone Irregulars Book Club Meeting

Bartlesville Public Library

600 S Johnstone Ave.

The book club meets in the Literary Services Office on the 2nd floor of the library on the first Tuesday of every month.

7 PM

In the Kitchen with Susan Bartlesville Public Library

600 S Johnstone Ave.

Please join us IN PERSON in Meeting Room A or live on the Bartlesville Public Library Facebook page for In the Kitchen with Susan. This free program consists of eight healthy cooking classes. Susan is a local restaurateur with many years of cooking experience. Susan loves to share with us how she has made healthy cooking easy in her own home and brings her best ideas and practices to make us all better chefs.

Wed, Mar 8

10 AM Healthy Living Series

Bartlesville Public Library

600 S Johnstone Ave.

The Healthy Living Series with Stacey Dawson is held the second and fourth Wednesday of the month at 10am in Meeting Room A at BPL. Stacey is the Family and Consumer Sciences Educator at the Washington County OSU Extension Office. She will be covering healthy living topics ranging from health and wellness to cooking. These classes are FREE and open to the public. They are in person and live on the BPL Facebook page.

28 bmonthly | MARCH 2023 “Friendly dealers, great showroom and vehicles, very accommodating. Really appreciate being called by name.” — Matt from Wichita, KS Hwy 75 in Bartlesville • (918)333-8010 • Member FDIC (918) 337-3257
Need a more helpful bank? Excellent service? Financial solutions? We’ve got you covered.

10 AM

Native American Art Market

Johnstone-Sare Building

100 SW Frank Phillips Blvd.

Come shop and support local natives American artists! An NDN taco sale will also be happening to support out title VI elders program.

10 AM

Dewey Flea Market & Bartlesville

And Beyond Boutique Marketplace

Washington County Fairgrounds

1109 N Delaware St.

Come and shop some new and repurposed items with some of the finest vendors monthly on the second Saturday of each month! Admission is FREE.

7:30 PM

BSO Presents: Romance

The Center

300 SE Adams Blvd.

Showcasing the winner of the 2023 Young Artists Competition, the concert also features Rimsky-Korsakov’s brilliant and beloved Romantic showpiece Scheherezade featuring BSO concertmaster Sheri Neubauer.

Sun, Mar 12

Mon, Mar 13

Thu, Mar 16

Fri, Mar 24

1 PM

Inter-State Farm and Home Show

Nellis Hall Coffeyville Community College

400 W 11th St. Coffeyville, KA 67337

11:30 AM

Red Cross Blood Drive

Bartlesville Public Library

600 S. Johnstone

Give blood, help save lives at the Red Cross Blood Drive, open from 11:30am - 5:30pm. Give in March and get a $10 Visa Prepaid Card by email. Plus, get a chance to win a $3,000 Visa Prepaid Card to help with gas or grocery expenses! You could be one of five lucky winners. Lend an arm, we’ll lend a hand! (Terms apply: help) To schedule your appointment, visit and enter BartlesvilleCommunity.

11:30 AM

Local Park Systems Lunch & Learn

Bartlesville Area History Museum

401 S Johnstone Ave.

Come learn about our the Bartlesville area local park systems with BAHM! Guests are encouraged to bring their own lunch or can enjoy light refreshments provided by BAHM. This event will be held Thursday, March 16th, from 11:30am - 1pm, for attendees to enjoy the museum exhibits and browse the gift shop. At noon, the presentation will begin. Tables and chairs will be set up for people who bring a lunch, and little ones can enjoy the airplane coloring station.

11 AM

OKWU Men’s Tennis vs. Ottawa

Bartlesville High School

1700 Hillcrest Dr

7:30 PM


The Center

300 SE Adams Blvd.

Tue, Mar 14

6 PM

Knit & Crochet Circle

Bartlesville Public Library

600 S Johnstone Ave.

This free event is held in Meeting Room C on the second Tuesday of each month.

Wed, Mar 15

10 AM

Animal Barn and Mountain Man Camp

There’s never been a better time to experience CHICAGO, Broadway’s razzle-dazzle smash. This triumphant hit musical is the recipient of six Tony Awards®, two Olivier Awards, a Grammy®, thousands of standing ovations and now the #1 longestrunning American Musical in Broadway history. CHICAGO has everything that makes Broadway great: a universal tale of fame, fortune and all that jazz; one show-stopping song after another; and the most astonishing dancing you’ve ever seen.

The Inter-State Farm & Home Show brings together the best of both worlds with agriculture and residential. Vendors throughout Northeast Oklahoma and Southeast Kansas will be represented at the show. Whether you are looking for the latest agricultural products and equipment, landscaping and general remodeling, or home decor, this is a must-visit show!

Sat, Mar 25

11 AM Battle of the Breads Delaware Tribe of Indians 5100 Tuxedo Blvd.

Come taste the delicious variety of ways Frybread can be served while shopping artisan and vendor booths! Register by searching for this form in your browser:

11 AM

OKWU Men’s Tennis vs. McPherson

Bartlesville High School

1700 Hillcrest Dr

Mon, Mar 27

11 AM

OKWU Men’s Tennis vs. Friends University (KS)

2 PM

Backtrack Vocals

The Center

300 SE Adams Blvd.

Backtrack is a 5-person a cappella group based in New York City. Their exciting arrangements transform familiar tunes and showcase the topnotch vocal and beatboxing abilities of all of the members. The group takes the stage around the nation at performing arts centers, corporate events, music festivals, schools and more. They infuse heart and humor into every performance and their versatile repertoire including Top 40, Motown, classical, show tunes, original music, and more, ensures that there is something for everyone. Backtrack is passionate about promoting the arts and helping students find and develop their voices. Backtrack has conducted educational programs at over 100 schools (elementary to college). They offer school assemblies, workshops with choirs, and clinics on topics including beatboxing, group vocal improvisation and DIY music video production. They’ve appeared on NBC, FOX, PBS, Steve Harvey’s daytime show STEVE! And Broadway’s Kinky Boots. They also won New York’s Got Talent Season 6 in 2019, and in December 2020, they made their movie debut in “A Ring for Christmas.”

Woolaroc Museum & Wildlife Preserve 1925 Woolaroc Ranch Rd.

The “crack” of the black powder rifle will be echoing off the walls of Woolaroc as the Mountain Man Camp officially opens for the season. Learn the proper art of throwing a tomahawk, shooting a black powder rifle, and seeing how people lived in the 1840s within the beautiful grounds of Woolaroc. The Animal Barn will also be open during regular business hours and is located on the main grounds. The variety of animals is always changing, and may include animals such as rabbits, goats, chickens, peacocks, donkeys, sheep,

Sat, Mar 18

11 AM

Annual Wild Onion Dinner

New Hope Indian United Methodist Church (OIMC)

910 W 9th St., Dewey.

We are holding our Annual Wild Onion Dinner on Saturday, March 18th, from 11am-6pm at the New Hope Indian UMC church. This annual event is celebrated at the beginning of spring. The menu includes wild onions & eggs, baked ham, beans or hominy, fry bread, dessert (grape dumplings while they last), and drinks. Cost will be $15.

Thu, Mar 23

4 PM

Together With Veterans Meet & Greet Happy Hour

Crossing 2nd

215 E 2nd St.

and more! Admission is covered with paid admission at the front gate.

11 AM

OKWU Men’s Tennis vs. Southeastern OK State

Bartlesville High School

1700 Hillcrest Dr

Together With Veterans Bartlesville, OK is hosting a Meet and Greet Happy Hour at Crossing 2nd. Join us in a casual atmosphere for Veterans to network and visit with other Veterans and community partners. The steering committee will be there to answer questions and provide information about resources available to Veterans. This event is free of charge. Come and go from 4 - 6pm.

Bartlesville High School

1700 Hillcrest Dr

Fri, Mar 31

6 PM

4th Annual Spay-ghetti Dinner Hilton Garden Inn

205 SW Frank Phillips Blvd.

Come attend the annual Spay-ghetti Dinner, benefiting the Washington County SPCA. A well-functioning animal shelter like ours is a necessary service for any community. This Fundraiser plays a vital role in raising funds for our annual operating budget. Featuring dinner, a live silent auction, music and dancing, proceeds from this event go towards the cost of vaccines, spaying or neutering, and basic medical care.

Sun, Apr 2

1 PM

Scouts BSA & YMCA Cornhole Tournament City Center Pavilion

Cherokee Ave. and Hensley Blvd. Benefiting the youth of Bartlesville, the Scouts and the YMCA are co-hosting a cornhole tournament in the park! Join us for food, drinks, cornhole, competition, and whatever weather Oklahoma delivers that day!

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 29 EVENTS CALENDAR Sat, Mar 11

Congratulations to our contestants!

Voting will be held on the bmonthly Facebook page at on March 3 at noon CST to March 10 at noon CST. Use your favorite browser or scan the QR code below to visit the page.

We’re excited to see who you choose!

Questions? Visit us online at for more details.

Sponsored by

30 bmonthly | MARCH 2023
MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 31 Since 1999 Same-day appointments Mon-Thur 8am-5pm | Fri 8am-12pm | Sat 9am-12pm Telemed appointments available during office hours 918-331-9979 providers William W. Davito, DO MArk D. Erhardt, DO Daniel J. Holdman, MD Elizabeth R. Sherrock, MD Donald R. Simmons, MD Michael Ryan Vaclaw, MD ellen l. conn, msn, aprn-cnp Amanda Gutierrez, LPC Exceptional care for your whole family. from grandchildren to grandparents, we’ll keep you healthy!

Caring for the terminally ill is a labor of love that requires a special person with just the right touch. If you have a passion for helping others, consider becoming a hospice volunteer. You can make a profound difference in the lives of patients and their loved ones.

We welcome volunteers from all walks of life. Whether you contribute your time and talents directly with patients or prefer to work behind the scenes, we invite you to become a member of a dedicated group of compassionate caregivers who serve as vital members of our hospice team.

To learn more about our hospice volunteer program, please call 918.744.72236.

To learn more about our hospice program, please call 918.744.7223.

Become a hospice volunteer.

Become a hospice volunteer.

Become a hospice volunteer.

terminally ill is a labor of love that requires a special person with just the right touch. If passion for helping others, consider becoming a hospice volunteer. You can make a profound the lives of patients and their loved ones.

Caring for the terminally ill is a labor of love that requires a special person with just the right touch. If you have a passion for helping others, consider becoming a hospice volunteer. You can make a profound difference in the lives of patients and their loved ones. We welcome volunteers from all walks of life. Whether you contribute your time and talents directly with patients or prefer to work behind the scenes, we invite you to become a member of a dedicated group of

Caring for the terminally ill is a labor of love that requires a special person with just the right touch. If have a passion for helping others, consider becoming a hospice volunteer. You can make a profound difference in the lives of patients and their loved ones. welcome volunteers from all walks of life. Whether you contribute your time

32 bmonthly | MARCH 2023 918-213-5943 Happy St. Patrick’s Day from the Steven Russell Realtor family!
directly with Phone: 918.744.7223 Fax: 918.744.5784
and talents
compassionate caregivers who serve as vital members of
hospice team.

Talking About Mental Health

Topic Needs to be Addressed More Frequently

Mental Health is a subject not talked about enough, it certainly wasn’t in my household and is still a struggle for me today.

When I was 11 years old, my parents got divorced right before Christmas. I was so taken aback — as far as I knew, they loved each other immensely and I never heard them fight. 11-year-old Kaylan had no idea how much that one event would change her life.

I immediately started living with my mother, who was struggling without my father in her life, and she had taken it out on me, not physically but verbally. I didn’t realize at the time what she was going through. Everyone was telling me he cheated, but he told me he had not. I did not know what to believe and even now I still don’t know what to believe. All I knew was that he was my dad and I loved each other but he no longer loved my mother.  After living with my mom for some time I started to really dislike my father, I kept hearing all these negative things from my mom.

I hated my dad for what felt like the longest time. I hated him so much that I would visit but for very short amounts of time. I eventually got very depressed from my home life. I got into the wrong friend group and started smoking cigarettes and cutting my wrists and had even thought about suicide. Sometimes I think about it today, but I can recognize that is not my own voice telling me that anymore.

Somewhere along the way, I stopped listening to my mom and started thinking for myself. I started to analyze what I was being told and comparing it to my own experiences. I started to see what was true. And that was that I needed to get out of my mother’s house. Not an easy decision, it took me a whole year before I finally admitted that I wanted to move in with him.

Two weeks before my sophomore year of high school, my life changed drastically. I broke my mother’s heart and moved halfway across the country, Oklahoma to California. During my enrollment in school for my sophomore year in high school, I decided to take psychology for an elective.

After one semester in this class, I started talking to the school psychologist. I got involved in my local church and got good friends who did not influence me in bad ways. My depression got better,

manageable, since I still think about suicide every now and then.

Without the knowledge that class and even AP Psychology gave me, as well as therapy, I was able to combat the ill thoughts in my head. Others that other were there were not so easy to overcome.

While I was able to overcome that then, I still very much struggle with depression and anxiety. Mental health is something that needs to be addressed more frequently, it should be included in the topic of overall health for people, not just their bodily health.

Even in church, most people think if you pray it will go away overnight. I have learned through my journey with God that sometimes the plans that he has for us take time and you have to put your trust in him.

Come to me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

— Matthew 11:28 NIV

When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.

— Psalms 56: 3 NIV

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 33 A GOOD WORD

Planning For RMDs in 2023

... Required Minimum Distributions by

Many of our clients have benefited over the years from the opportunity to contribute to a 401(k) or 403(b) plan sponsored by their employer. As they near retirement, we regularly get questions about required minimum distributions, which are often referred to simply by their acronym: RMDs. This is especially true in 2023, as a new law passed at the end of 2022 changed the playing field. Let’s go over what RMDs are, how the rules have changed, and what all of this means for your finances overall.

What are RMDs?

Essentially, the IRS requires those in or near retirement to take money out of their retirement account each year. In their words: You cannot keep funds in your retirement account indefinitely. So, when you reach a certain age, you must begin making withdrawals from any non-Roth retirement accounts you have, including 401(k)s, 403(b)s, IRAs, SEP IRAs, and so on.  We usually work together with clients to incorporate these required payments into a broader retirement income strategy. And while the distributions are mandatory, they don’t necessarily have to be cash payments used for income.

You don’t generally need to calculate your own RMDs, as your retirement plan sponsor or plan administrator often handles this. However, it can be helpful to understand the methodology. Essentially, the IRS provides you a number, known as the distribution period. You then take your retirement account balance from December 31 and divide it by the distribution period. That’s the amount you’re required to take out in the following year.

How did SECURE Act 2.0 change RMDs?

In late 2022, Congress passed SECURE Act 2.0, which revised a number of provisions tied to how Americans save and plan for retirement. The law made notable changes to RMDs. Starting January 1, 2023, retirees do not have to take RMDs until they turn 73 (previously, it was 72). That means if you turn 72 this year, and you haven’t taken any RMDs yet, you can likely defer those payments until your next birthday. This is significant because it gives retirees another year to let their savings grow and delay tax liability.

In 2033, the age increases again to 75, meaning anyone currently in their 60s may want to revise their retirement plan accordingly.

SECURE 2.0 lessened the penalties for missed RMDs, too. Starting this year, missed distributions will be penalized at 25% of the missed distribution, or 10% if the issue is corrected within a reasonable time.

The SECURE 2.0 Act also eliminated RMDs for Roth 401(k), Roth 403(b), or other Roth options through employer-sponsored accounts. This change will go into effect starting in 2024.

Planning for RMDs

RMDs tend to be a foundational part of retirement income planning, precisely because they’re retired. But not all retirees use these payments as traditional income. When we talk to clients about retirement income, we’re looking at multiple factors.

For instance, you can take RMDs at whatever cadence you like—you might set up quarterly or monthly payments to help with cash flow, or take a lump sum payment at the end of the year to use for a large purchase or vacation. We often recommend clients take monthly distributions as this can resemble a more traditional paycheck and help with budgeting.

If you don’t need the RMDs as income, you still have to take the disbursement, but you don’t have to take it in cash. We often talk to clients about using their RMDs as a tool for charitable giving. Qualified charitable distributions (QCDs) allow you to directly donate to a qualified charity or organization from your retirement account. If the funds go directly from your retirement account to the organization, these donations generally satisfy the RMD requirements.

When should you start taking RMDs?

In an ideal world, we’d suggest clients wait as long as possible to begin taking RMDs to give their money a chance to grow tax-free for as long as possible. But it’s not always that simple.

For starters, the greater your account balance, the higher your RMDs will be. And, depending on your circumstances and goals (including your plans to pass wealth along to your family), you may benefit from starting these withdrawals sooner.

One concern we hear quite frequently? “I don’t want to outlive my money.” When we get this question, we try to remind clients that you can do more with your retirement account than draw it down as income. For instance, you could use a lump sum from your 401(k) or IRA to purchase an annuity of some kind. You can also convert funds from a traditional to a Roth retirement account leading up to retirement, since paying taxes on those funds now reduces your taxable balance later.

If you have questions about how RMDs affect your retirement income or your overall retirement plan, feel free to reach out to our team. We’d be more than happy to discuss the different options you may have.




Faith Integration

Many men and women are expressing their faith through a desire to align their values with their investing, finding ethical companies that not only avoid doing bad things, but impact humanity for good.

Dual Mandate Investing



Faith Integration

Dual mandate investing is investing with two goals - profitable financial return and a positive impact on the world. Dual mandate investing adds a second dimension of the impact your investments have on the world, to investing that traditionally focuses only on financial return.

Many men and women are expressing their faith through a desire to align their values with their investing, finding ethical companies that not only avoid doing bad things, but impact humanity for good.

Metrics of Investing

Dual Mandate Investing

Investment Strategies

We choose funds we believe impact the world for good and manage how your assets are allocated over time. Our biblically-responsible faith-based portfolios leverage these core strategies:

Dual mandate investing is investing with two goals - profitable financial return and a positive impact on the world. Dual mandate investing adds a second dimension of the impact your investments have on the world, to investing that traditionally focuses only on financial return.

Investment Strategies

Social Impact: Companies and funds that may include Community Development, Medical Research, Renewable Energy, Global Economic Development, Affordable Housing, etc.

Our Areas of Specialization

Good Profits: Companies that may create value by means of Energy Efficiency, Clean Water Supply, Cybersecurity, Healthy Food Supply, Biotechnology, Customer Loyalty, Employee Benefits, Fair Trade, etc.



We choose funds we believe impact the world for good and manage how your assets are allocated over time. Our biblically-responsible faith-based portfolios leverage key core strategies to impact the world for good.

Values-Based Investing & Our Process

Corporate Advocacy: Funds that may work with corporations on known deficiencies, and engage corporate leadership with shareholder resolutions, proxy voting, and on-going dialogue.

Investor Wholeness: Companies and funds to align with your values, reflect your mindfulness and care for others, and make you proud to hold in your investment portfolio.

“We are a family of financial advisors whose specialty is faith-based planning strategies. We counsel clients

biblical stewardship. This goes from the planning process all the way to

Investors are owners in a company, and we think investments should be something you believe in and can be proud of.”

profits without regard to moral or ethical
of companies owned Strong Financial and Social Returns Social Return
social causes without any need or
of financial return Faith-Based Investing Negative Screens “Do No Harm” (What to Avoid)“Do Good” (What to Embrace) Positive Screens XXX Traditional Investing Charitable Giving 117 W. 5th Street, Suite 402 • Bartlesville, OK 74003 • P 918.336.7877 • TF 800.825.3602 • Investment Advisory Services offered through Revo Financial, LLC. Revo Financial, LLC is a state Registered Investment Advisor. Lucas Nettles, CFP®, CKA® Personal Financial Planner Jon Nettles, CFP® Chief Executive Officer
• Financial Planning • Values-based investments and management • Wealth preservation strategies • Tax effieient investing • Family wealth planning • Life insurance
We integrate the goals and values of our clients into our process • Introduction — Getting to know you • Planning — Identifying & outlining your goals • 60-dey review — Choosing the route forward • Communication — Keeping in touch • Monitoring progress — Monitoring & updating MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 35 NOW YOU KNOW SPONSOR

The Winter Challenge...

Bartlesville’s Bowling History

There is something profound in the sound of a bowling alley… the rumble of bowling balls rolling towards a ten-pin target, the thunderous cracking of the ball hitting the pins, watching the pins splinter in different directions, and the cheers of bowling a strike. From bumper bowl for the tiny tots to professional bowlers, the rules and regulations of bowling in America became standardized with the 1895 organization of the American Bowling Congress; followed in 1916 by the women’s counterpart, Women’s International Bowling Congress. In 2005, the United States Bowling Congress was formed as an overall governing body.

Bartlesville had humble beginnings in the field of bowling. The area sports scene was full of football, basketball and baseball but the winter humdrum left active Bartians in a holding pattern, awaiting spring. Then came bowling, pitting Tavern Keepers, Bankers, Interurban, Smelter Engineers and Merchants against their friends for the city title. The cut-throat games resulted in the winner’s bragging rights posted in local newspapers and the best of the best being entered in city, state and national tournaments.

In 1900, the railroad established Bartlesville’s Santa Fe depot prompting Johnstone and Keeler’s North Delaware Settlement to move westward en-masse and create Second Street, where Bartlesville’s first bowling alley appeared. The owners, Charles Parr and Christenson Guthrie, sold their bowling alley to William Hutton in May and less than a month later, Ed Collins and Augusta Fowler bought the sporting amusement and moved it to Fowler’s building, two doors east of the feed store. The area was in its genesis and everyone knew their neighbor’s business (literally) so no addresses were needed. Thursday’s were “Ladies Afternoon” bowling and as many as 25 ladies participated.

In 1903, Leon Gilkey opened a billiard hall and bowling alley at 115-117 E. Third Street; followed by Grounds and Tipton’s 1904 “resort” in the Johnstone Building at Third and Johnstone Avenue. Five Brunswick billiards and pool

tables accompanied a bowling alley making this business “the leading institution of its kind in the Cherokee Nation.”

December 1904, the Bartlesville Aerie No. 610 Fraternal Order of Eagles purchased the Gilkey billiard, pool hall and bowling alley for the amusement of their 100+ members and established their parlor on the second floor of the John McCallister building at 115-117 E. Third Street. The Eagles held tournaments with ladies winning handsome handbags, and a box of the finest cigars for the men. Undertaker John McCallister assumed the ownership of the bowling alley from 1906-1907.

Oklahoma City’s Allen Ogilvie opened his cigar shop, billiard and bowling alley at 104 W. Second Street in 1908 and, just months later, moved to the Pemberton Building at 324 S. Johnstone Avenue with all new equipment. The Johnstone location had four Brunswick-Balke-Collender bowling alleys,

36 bmonthly | MARCH 2023 NOW YOU KNOW

three billiard tables and seven pool tables in the basement. The ground floor operated as the Ogilvie Cigar Company selling all types of tobacco and newsprint products. November 1909, Ogilvie was forced into bankruptcy, forfeiting his Johnstone Avenue and Nowata businesses. Thomas Gorman was assigned as the receiver and the stock was sold in December to Elk City’s J.F. Streit who opened the Streit Cigar Company beginning January 26, 1910. Later that year, Monte Vandeventer operated the basement Brunswick Bowling Alley at that location for a brief time.

November 1915, Ernest Hardister opened the Rex Bowling and Billiard Parlor at 324 S. Johnstone with bowling though 1925 and billiards though his retirement in 1945. He sold to Clifford Prichard who operated through 1952 and others operated the Rex Billiard Parlor through 1969.

Several bowling alleys operated only a short time. For example, in April 1905, “Little Ed” Huling opened a bowling alley in Ramona; Bus Sanders operated the five-pin S&S Bowling Alley and Ice-Cream Parlor at 308 E. Eighth in Dewey, 1939-1940; and the Duck Pin Bowling Alley was at 306 S. Dewey in Bartlesville, 1941-1942. Additionally, in 1948, A.F. Frenchman established an archery range and a Ten Pin and Duck Pin bowling alley at 405 Osage, Dewey.

From 1935-1938, Jesse Spencer operated the Pla-Mor Alleys at 312 S. Johnstone with free lessons and a snack bar. He then signed a five-year lease on the Everman Building

at 309-311 S. Osage and remodeled the building to open the 8-lane Strik-Mor with the Strik-Mor Lunch. Four lanes were reconditioned and brought from the PlaMor and brand new Brunswick-BalkeCollender bowling alleys completed the array. The new Strik-Mor opened September 14, 1938 and operated through 1957. January 1958, the all new, fully-automatic 12-lane Strik-Mor Alleys opened at 1312 W. First Street, which closed in 1972. Local photographer, Frank Griggs purchased 312 S. Johnstone building as investment property.

Home of the famous Phillips 66ers, the Adams Building at 411 S. Keeler was built in 1950 as an office building with employee recreation in mind; incorporating a fitness center, swimming pool, basketball court and a 12-lane bowling alley. At the peak of the Phillips’ bowling competitions, Phillips had 48 men’s teams, 18 women’s teams and 12 mixed teams in league play.

On May 28, 1958, the 12-lane Highland Park Bowl opened at 204 SE Washington Blvd. The Keg Lanes opened in 1959 at 3901 SE Frank Phillips Blvd. and was replaced by the 10-lane Plaza Bowling Alley on July 8, 1961. In 1960, Bartlesville supported four bowling alleys and the Examiner Enterprise created a citywide tournament for the best-of-the-best “Bowler of the Week,” who then competed for the “Bowler of the Year” trophy and newspaper bragging rights.

In 1975, Ted Schwermer was involved in several Bartlesville area businesses; including owning the Plaza and Highland Park lanes. In 1976, Ted opened the 32-lane Red Apple Sports Center at 1414 SE Washington Blvd. bringing a close to the Plaza and Highland Park bowling alleys. The Red Apple Sports Center continues…

WWII was a brutal war that took a toll on life and limb. Bartlesville war hero, Arthur Vandagriff suffered the loss of his left arm in 1942 and then lived the life of a POW at the hands of the Japanese for three years. He returned home in 1945 and found maintenance employment at the Bureau of Mines and as a desk attendant at the Strik-Mor and Plaza Bowling Lanes where he gained notoriety for his outstanding “onearmed” bowling skills.    Now

You Know *
MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 37 NOW YOU KNOW
Did You Know?

Located in the heart of Downtown Bartlesville

Located in the heart of Downtown Bartlesville

100 SW Frank Phillips Blvd

100 SW Frank Phillips Blvd

Reserve your spot at the top (918)440-6773

Reserve your spot at the top (918)440-6773 JOHNSTONE-SARE The



38 bmonthly | MARCH 2023
JOHNSTONE-SARE The Room at the Top
the Top

Women’s Clubs in Bartlesville

A Celebration of National Women’s History Month

Little History Adventures

March is National Women’s History Month, dedicated to the accomplishments and achievements of women in the United States history that are often overlooked. The women’s history month started in 1978 in California. It became an annual event every March in the United States and other countries in 1987.

Bartlesville has celebrated women with  women’s clubs since 1904, when the first women’s club was formed. On February 6, 1904, several wives of prominent business and professional men in Bartlesville were invited to Mrs. Campbell’s home to organize a club. It was initially called the Fornightly club, and then became known as the Tuesday Club. Many of these prominent women established Bartlesville’s first Reading Room.

The Tuesday Club was a very powerful group in our community for many years. Their objective was “Mutual helpfulness and promotion of  higher intellectual, social and moral conditions.” Tuesday Club formed the first library, Johnstone Park, and many of the arts and entertainments events in our community. In fact, without these women in our early local history, we would not have the arts and entertainment events that we so enjoy even now. The women of this club were always encouraging education, the arts and

the community. They helped form many of the other women’s clubs, the ultimate in networking.

Tuesday Club helped six other clubs to have a women’s clubhouse in the early 1950’s at 1601 S. Shawnee. The building is still in use by women’s clubs, including Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) and Indian Women’s Club.

The 1953 theme of the Tuesday Club actually described the group for years; “Let the reflections of the past inspire us. Let the realities of the present quicken us. Let the promises of the future beckon us on.” Unfortunately, in  2019 the Tuesday Club decided to disband. But their legacy lives on in many of the women’s clubs we

In 1940, an annual Institute of Women’s Clubs, which was sponsored by the Bartlesville City Federation for Women’s Clubs, was held in Bartlesville. Their theme was, “Closer Cooperation and Understanding Between Rural and Federated Club Women.”

While researching at The Bartlesville Area History Museum, I found pictures of many women’s clubs through the years. Many of them are gone, but I found it interesting that we have had so many; League of Women’s Voters, Mutual Girls Club, now known as HeartMatters, Bartlesville Women’s Network, Jane Phillips Sorority, Doherty Girls’ Club, Halycon, Women’s Business and Professionals, Delphian, DAR, Live Wire Club, Pilot Club, Hillcrest Women’s Clubs, Credit Women’s Breakfast Club, Desk and Derrick, Trise Club, PEO, several garden clubs, different women’s church groups, and I anticipate many others that I have missed.

Bartlesville started as a Wild West oil boomtown, but the ladies of the community were able to tame it somewhat and help make it what it is today.

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 39 LOOKING BACK

2nd Annual ART-Full Day ‘Ville in the

Explore Bartlesville Art!

Local Student Artwork Show & Sale

Visit the BAA, (500 S. Dewey Ave.), to see the art show!

Reception: Friday, March 24th 6pm Student Show & Sale: Saturday, March 25th 10am – 4pm

Studio Tours Around the ‘Ville

Saturday, March 25th 10am – 4pm

Tour private art studios to view and buy artwork from these BAA artists: Amy Jenkins, Steve Russell, Cris Sundquist, Brad Glock, Carolyn Mock, Ann Spoon, Janet Odden, Maurice & Cathy Casad, Steven Graham, Cheryl Bryan, and Jarrett Cowden.

Visit the BAA website for details:

Studio locations will be published in a tour brochure available at the BAA beginning Monday, March 20th from 11am – 3pm.

Follow us on Facebook!

An ART-Full Day in the ‘Ville

Second Annual BAA Event Returns this Month

Bartlesville Art Association is excited to celebrate its 71st year anniversary as an organization with the second annual ART-Full Day in the ‘Ville on Friday and Saturday, March 24 and 25. This community-wide weekend festival will be filled with artistic events created to showcase high school art students and local artists, along with their artwork.

On Friday evening, BAA will host an opening reception featuring area high school artists and their works at the Bartlesville Art Center. Open to the public, the reception will begin at 6 p.m. at the Bartlesville Art Center, located in the Price Tower Annex, 500 South Dewey Avenue, St B. Students will be showing and selling their artwork at the reception and continue to show and sell at BAA all day Saturday. Also attending the Friday reception will be many of the local artists who will be part of the Studio Tour beginning on Saturday. Cost for attending reception and following Studio tour will be $10 and will a include Studio Tour map for Saturday. (If only attending Saturday Open House on Saturday and Studio Tour, the cost will be $5)

The Bartlesville Studio Tour takes place on Saturday, where local artists will open their studios to the public and provide a first-hand look at their artistic processes and where they work. Local artists’ studios on the Saturday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. tour include Ann Spoon, Steve Russell/Cris Sundquist, Brad Glock, Carolyn Mock, Maurice and Cathy Casad, Steven Graham, Cheryl Bryan, Amy Jenkins/Janet Odden, and Jarrett Cowden. Along with visiting with local artists, each studio will have art on display and available for purchase. A map and schedule for studio visits will be made available through BAA (at the Friday reception and Saturday open house at the BAA, and also online and at the BAA the week before the Studio Tour). Be sure to

look for more information coming soon on ART-Full Day in the ‘Ville online at and on Facebook. Inquiries can also be made by calling the BAA office between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., Monday-Thursday at 918-332-8462.

Bartlesville Art Association was formed in 1952 with area artists getting together to create art. It has grown into a local organization with the vision of becoming the premier visual arts resource in the region and providing art inspiration and art learning opportunities for area residents of all ages. With a 71-year history, the BAA has brought to the area events and classes meant to inspire talent and promote appreciation of art. Their Annual Art Show and Sale is one of the longest-running civic events in Bartlesville. It is a yearly judged show featuring around 100 regional artists who display their work for a month at the Bartlesville Community Center Lyon Gallery. Cash awards are given out by a well-known regional or national artist and much of the artwork is also for sale.

The association of nearly 200 members is recognized for sponsoring visual art events for all ages. Some of the many art opportunities are children’s weekly art classes; open studio times at the BAA Center; Summer Art Camp in June for local students; many workshops in various mediums throughout the year from local, regional, and national artists; several one time “101” classes for BAA members or prospective members where new types of art endeavors can be explored. Check the association website, for information on these and many other classes and activities for all ages.

Membership in BAA is for anyone who loves visual art. Annual membership begins at $40, with free membership for local public school art teachers and high school students. Join online at the BAA website or request a membership form by mail by calling the BAA office between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., Monday-Thursday at 918-332-8462, and speak with the BAA administrator, MarLo Bailey.

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 41 THE ARTS
Kid’s Summer Art Camp 2022
42 bmonthly | MARCH 2023

Ensembles, Encores & More!

Broadway in Bartlesville Presents 3 Hit Musicals

Get excited for your chance to experience real Broadway shows right here in Bartlesville! This spring and summer, the Broadway in Bartlesville! season concludes with three national touring hit musicals.

“We are excited about the three fantastic performances that conclude another great Broadway in Bartlesville! season,” said The Center Managing Director Val Callaghan. “With Chicago, Stomp, and Madagascar the Musical, area residents are treated to three spectacular performances with a little something for everyone.”

CHICAGO is back in town on March 16th, and after 25 years, it is still the one musical with everything that makes Broadway shimmy-shake. It’s a universal tale of fame, fortune, and all that jazz, with one show stopping song after another. Whether you’re looking for your first Broadway musical, whether you’ve seen the Academy Award®-winning film and want to experience the show live on stage, or whether you’ve seen it before and want to recapture the magic, CHICAGO always delivers!

On April 3rd, STOMP, the international percussion sensation, returns to Bartlesville for the third time with a performance at The Center. From its beginnings as a street performance in the UK, STOMP has grown into an international hit over the past 25 years, having performed in more than 50 countries and in front of more than 24 million people.

Critics and audiences have raved: “STOMP is as crisp and exuberant as if it had opened yesterday,” says The New York Times. The San Francisco Chronicle declares “STOMP has a beat that just won’t quit!” The Los Angeles Times exclaims: “Electrifying! Triumphs in the infinite variety of the human experience.” “A phenomenal show! Bashing, crashing, smashing, swishing, banging, and kicking — a joyous invention!” says the Chicago Tribune. You won’t want to miss this smash hit show!

Come in and cool down on June 15th for Madagascar the

Musical. Based on the smash hit DreamWorks’ animated motion picture, this show follows all your favorite cracka-lackin’ friends (Alex the Lion, Marty the Zebra, Melman the Giraffe, Gloria the hip hip Hippo, and a colony of hilarious, clever penguins) as they escape from their home in New York’s Central Park Zoo and find themselves on an unexpected journey to the madcap world of King Julien’s Madagascar. Filled with outlandish characters, adventures galore and an upbeat score, you’ll have no choice but to “Move It, Move It!” Madagascar the Musical is the perfect family outing, with vibrancy and pace for audiences of all ages!

Tickets for each show are available by phone at 918-337-2787 and in person at The Center box office, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. You can also visit for 24/7 ticket sales.

Special thanks to The National Endowment for the Arts, the Oklahoma Arts Council, and these local sponsors who make the Broadway in Bartlesville! 2022-2023 series possible: Mr. & Mrs. Kenneth Adams

American Heritage Bank • Arvest Wealth Management

bMonthly Magazine


Cup Images • Cortney McClure Design • Mr.
• Diversified Systems Resources • Examiner-Enterprise • Green Country Village • Image First Hospitality • Keleher Architects • KGGF-AM KGGF-FM KUSN KQQR • KRIG KYFM KWON KPGM • Nowata Road Liquor • Phillips 66 • Price Tower Arts Center • Robinett/King • Dr. and Mrs. Richard Rutledge • Dr. and Mrs. William D. Smith • Sparklight • Stumpff Funeral Home & Crematory • Truity Credit Union • Visit Bartlesville.
and Mrs. Paul Crawford
MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 43 ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

Green Country Pet Cremation Service offers private pet cremation with timely return of ashes in your choice of a decorative wooden urn with an engraved nameplate. If no return of ashes is requested, the ashes will be gently scattered on a beautiful pastoral/garden property.

We are located in Bartlesville, Oklahoma and gratefully serve pet owners from a wide area surrounding Bartlesville, Dewey, and Northeast Oklahoma.

For our fee schedule, please feel free to call us at any time.


44 bmonthly | MARCH 2023
a downtown nexus 215 E. 2nd Street cocktails coffee food fun Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Introducing BIG Plates for BIG Appetites! Like us on
MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 45 CD Rate Specials 2.00 % APY* 13 MONTH 2.50 % APY* 25 MONTH Call (918) 907-3581 for more details. *CD Annual Percentage Yield is accurate as of 6/27/22. Minimum opening balance of $1,000. A penalty will be imposed for early withdrawal of CD products. Fees could reduce earnings on the account. Limited time offer. Rates apply to new deposits only. 422 S. Dewey Ave • (918) 907-3580 4.00 % APY* 17 MONTH 4.10 % APY 25 MONTH *CD Annual Percentage Yield is accurate as of 2/2/23. Minimum opening balance of $25,000. A penalty will be imposed for early withdrawal of CD products. Fees could reduce earnings on the account. Limited time offer. Rates apply to new deposits only. CD Rate Specials Call (918) 907-3581 for more details . www.regent .bank * 4.00 % APY* 17 MONTH 4.10 % APY 25 MONTH *CD Annual Percentage Yield is accurate as of 2/2/23. Minimum opening balance of $25,000. A penalty will be imposed for early withdrawal of CD products Fees could reduce earnings on the account. Limited time offer. Rates apply to new deposits only. CD Rate Specials Call (918) 907-3581 for more details. * of Exceptional Senior Living Green Country Village has helped seniors in Bartlesville enjoy private, maintenance-free residences with exceptional services and great hospitality for the last 30 years. Whether you or someone you love is considering independent living, assisted living or memory care, Green Country Village is the place to live, connect, grow. Call (918) 335-2086 to schedule an appointment. 1025 Swan Drive • Bartlesville, OK 74006 Not-For-Profit Organization Spring is on the way! Come and visit us at GCV! of Exceptional Senior Living Green Country Village has seniors in Bartlesville enjoy and great more than 30 years. Whether you or someone you considering memory care, Green Country is the to connect, grow. (918) 1 025 S wan Driv e Ba rtlesville, OK 7400 6 of Exceptional Senior Living Green Country has seniors in great than 30 Country 1 e • rtlesville, OK
46 bmonthly | MARCH 2023 Extraordinary Reach. Extraordinary Results. Bringing You Home BARTLESVILLE | GRAND LAKE | PONCA CITY | SE KANSAS | MIAMI 1740 SE WASHINGTON BLVD., BARTLESVILLE, OK 74006 Each location is independently owned and operated CELL: 918.331.8152 OFFICE: 918.766.0001 EMAIL: CATHYCOWAN@KW.COM WEBSITE: CATHYCOWAN.PRO REALTOR ® OKWU offers a Christ-centered education to a global community of nearly 1,100 on-campus and online students with more than 50 undergraduate and graduate degree programs. CHRIST • SCRIPTURE • TRUTH • WISDOM Hey high school grads— let’s talk college! Stay local and earn a degree. 800-468-6292

OKWU to Host Leadership Event

“Tomorrow Needs Leaders” Coming to Campus this Month

Oklahoma Wesleyan University is proudly hosting the Tomorrow Needs Leaders with John C. Maxwell on March 2122 as part of the 2023 Dunn Institute conference. Community and business leaders are invited to the event ,which focuses on generating powerful, positive leadership for leaders in every industry.

“Oklahoma Wesleyan University is dedicated to equipping leaders,” said Dr. Jim Dunn, president of OKWU. “John C. Maxwell is one of the world’s most influential experts on leadership, and we are excited to bring him to Bartlesville this year.”

John C. Maxwell is a #1 New York Times bestselling author, speaker, coach, and leader who has sold more than 34 million books. He is the founder of Maxwell Leadership® — the leadership development organization helping people lead powerful, positive change. Maxwell has been recognized as the #1 leader in business and as the world’s most influential leadership expert, training tens of millions of leaders worldwide — from Fortune 500 CEOs and national leaders to entrepreneurs and the leaders of tomorrow.

The Tomorrow Needs Leaders Dinner with John C. Maxwell is on March 21. The event, which is held at The Center in downtown Bartlesville, will begin at 6:45 p.m. Tickets for the dinner are on sale and available for purchase online.

Attendees can hear from Maxwell on how to grow in their leadership abilities by creating a culture of difference and multiplying the leadership capacity of those they serve with.

Oklahoma Wesleyan thanks its sponsors, including Patriot Auto Group and Russell Real Estate, for their support of this event. Limited sponsorships are still available, and they include special passes to events like a VIP Meet-and-Greet and the Private Leadership Breakfast with John C. Maxwell. You can inquire about event sponsorships by visiting www. or calling 918-335-6234.

From March 21-22, Maxwell will headline The Dunn Institute, speaking at private events for church leaders,

ministry students, and community leaders. The two-day invitation-only conference benefits pastors and students with leadership instruction and inspiration.

“I’m delighted that Dr. Maxwell has agreed to come to Oklahoma Wesleyan University again,” Dunn said. “It will be a valuable time, and we’re excited to invite our extended OKWU community to participate.”

For tickets and details about the Tomorrow Needs Leaders Dinner, visit ~~~

The Dunn Institute was founded at OKWU to maximize the effectiveness of church ministry by equipping Wesleyan pastors to face the administrative, management, and leadership challenges of the local church. Church leaders benefit from instruction on pertinent topics to make an immediate difference in their ministries during a yearly conference.

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 47 EDUCATION


48 bmonthly | MARCH 2023 OUT & ABOUT
MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 49 OUT & ABOUT


50 bmonthly | MARCH 2023 OUT & ABOUT

Coach Holbrook

Below is a testimonial on Coach Bill Holbrook from Travis Wilkey, the President/Owner of the Ditch Witch dealership in Raleigh, NC, where he has lived for the past 43 years. He played safety at Oklahoma State University and started as a sophomore before having knee surgery his junior year and then played backup his senior year. He is not retired and still loves what he does with great people that run the day-to-day business. All of his family lives in Raleigh and his wife, Susie, and him enjoy watching their grandsons play sports.

Growing up in Bartlesville, most everyone was aware that we were all very lucky that he decided to start a brand new football program at the new high school, Sooner High.  My first experience with Coach Holbrook was attending the football camp that he ran at Sooner. To me he was a larger than life coach ... at first I was scared to death of him, but soon learned he was one of the nicest people I knew.

As a summer occupation, Coach Holbrook bought several trucks, as well as hay-hauling equipment and began hauling hay for local ranchers.  I worked every summer for him while in high school, along with fellow teammates. It was hard work, but we were in great shape when the season started. I can assure you that we looked forward to two-a-days after summer of hay hauling!  I believe that work was Coach Holbrook’s master plan — to have his players in great shape! It was much better than lifting weights! We would take turns driving the truck while the others loaded the hay and on one particular day that I was driving, I damaged one of the trucks.  I was so concerned how he would react, but once he got to the field he never said a thing … just gave us drinks and got to work fixing the damage.  The way he handled that situation made a life-long impact on me and taught me how to be a leader.

When I was a senior, we were unbeaten and even ranked in the state polls. In our last game, our quarterback, Bill Thomas, broke his hand and our backup QB was also hurt. On Monday, before our next game, Coach Holbrook called me to his office and told me I was going to take Bill’s place, but to keep it quiet. He had a plan that he would work out prior to the start of the game. In the dressing room, I gave my #13 jersey to another wide receiver that was taking my place and I put Bill’s #12 on. When we were scouted, opposing teams knew who wore #12 and who wore #13 and what positions we played. The switch was important to the success of the plan! Well, we won that game. After the game, Coach Holbrook told their coach about the switch and their coach laughed and

said, “That’s why we could never get to your quarterback!

All week long we practiced making sure our defensive ends rushed your QB because he was a good pocket passer and not too fleet of foot.” Coach Holbrook knew how I played so he used my strengths and weaknesses to win the game. All game long I sprinted outside the pocket and either ran or passed. Coach

Holbrook had a game plan that work perfectly. That’s coaching. Our senior yearbook has a picture of me running outside in the #12 jersey with the caption “Sure doesn’t look like Bill.”

Coach Bill Holbrook

World War II veteran; Army 17th Airborne Division; dropped behind enemy lines three times; one of three survivors on a 23 person patrol unit; member of The Greatest Generation; 26 years of coaching in Bartlesville starting in 1950 with 12 years as assistant and then 4 years as head coach at College High followed by 10 years at the new school Sooner High in 1966; selected as the coach of the year in 1963 in the Oklahoma 7 conference after taking College High from a 1-8 record in his first year to 6-4 his second year; in 1969, as the head coach of Bartlesville Sooner he was selected to coach the Special Teams unit in the Oil Bowl (which pitted the best Oklahoma All Staters against Texas All Staters) and Oklahoma defeated them for the first time in many years; overall record of 67-69-12; athletic director and head coach for football for Sooner High from inception to 1976 before retiring and moving to Leakey, Texas; 98 years old today and an inspiration to many successful men from Bartlesville in the 50s, 60s and 70s.

Of all the coaches I had in my life, Coach Holbrook was the best.  Not only was he good at the X’s and O’s, but he was very resourceful. He was able to get the most out of all players so that we could be the best that we could be as a team. During the first part of my junior year, an OU coach came to our practice and Coach Holbrook introduced me to him. He told the OU coach that I had the talent to play college ball. It meant so much that he believed in me. The encouragement that I could play on the next level meant even more coming from a man I admired. During my 4 years at Oklahoma State playing football, I fondly thought of Coach Holbrook and never wanted to let him down. The discipline of football made me a hard working person but having a coach that I admired and trusted set me up to be a college graduate.

I doubt if Coach Holbrook’s win record would be his strongest attribute as a coach. But, the number of former players that benefitted from getting to play for him are more important than wins or losses.  At the end of the day, I am a better person for knowing him.  I hope the committee will give strong consideration to recognize all that Coach Holbrook brought to the table as a coach and mentor.

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 51 BARTLESVILLE’S OWN

My wife, Ann-Janette, is often referred to (in our family) as the Patron Saint of Minor Holidays . It’s an honor made even more extraordinary by the fact that she is still very much alive. Usually, you have to die for such gracious titles to be given.

Arbor Day, Valentine’s Day, Presidents Day, Winter and Summer Solstice, and even Groundhog Day (maybe especially Groundhog Day) all carry a weight just shy of Thanksgiving and Christmas in our house. For my wife, all holidays are equal and deserve their day.

We would not be the America we are today without the impact of those foreign souls making this land, their land.  They took ownership of a dream offered the world over.  Of course, it didn’t always go smoothly.  It turns out it’s poetic, even romantic, to invite the poor and huddled masses, but it’s altogether more difficult when you find them actually knocking at your door. For decades those immigrants were persecuted for their religion, lack of education, stealing American jobs, assaulting our culture, and their generally impoverished state.

In the month of March, we have, of course, held nothing back to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day over the years. We’ve toasted the Irish at Chicago’s Southside Parade, sipped Guinness in Austin, danced a jig at the Blue Dome in Tulsa, and even dawned our green on the island nation of Singapore. Why wouldn’t we? What is life without a few traditions which you have to go to extraordinary lengths to keep?

There is no shortage of campiness when it comes to a holiday like this. Leprechauns and clovers,

52 bmonthly | MARCH 2023 FUNNY YOU SHOULD ASK

rainbows and 50 shades of green, gaudy outfits with “Kiss Me, I’m Irish” shirts and more than a few myths and legends .

But in the midst of all that, there’s also some sincerity and things worth celebrating.

Amid all these tremendous challenges, he remarkably pushed harder into his faith (which is certainly not a given in cases of hardships like these). After Pat returned home, he had another dream. This time it was of the people of Ireland pleading with him to return, presumably to rescue them from spiritual poverty. He felt utterly unprepared and unqualified for such a calling, but eventually gave in to the need itself and returned to a nation that had only harmed, stripped, and enslaved him.

America is an open library of stories of those who have tried to trade famine, poverty, and “the Troubles” in on a promise of a better life. We are a land big enough to start anew in. The Irish in America outnumber those actually in Ireland seven to one.

We would not be the America we are today without the impact of those foreign souls making this land, their land. They took ownership of a dream offered the world over. Of course, it didn’t always go smoothly. It turns out it’s poetic, even romantic, to invite the poor and huddled masses, but it’s altogether more difficult when you find them actually knocking at your door. For decades those immigrants were persecuted for their religion, lack of education, stealing American jobs, assaulting our culture, and their generally impoverished state. (Plus, who puts green and orange together on a flag? You’re just making yourself a target at that point.)

Flash forward and the Irish and America are inseparable. They’ve given us presidents, poets, rockstars, movie stars, and charming cereal icons. Even so, the irony of waves of often unwanted Irish Immigrants risking everything to escape a jeopardized future or at the very least the hope of something better can’t be lost on our current moment in history. At Ellis Island, there is a quote lifted up on one wall from a mother who said that putting her son on a boat for America was like putting him in a coffin and she never saw him again. Sometimes what you’re running from or to is that drastic.

Still, the most famous Irish export might be old St. Patrick himself (ironically not Irish at all). What a story he has.

Here’s a 16-year-old British boy, the son of a local government official, who was kidnapped from his own home, brought to a foreign land (Ireland), and enslaved for six years in a government-sanctioned pirate trade. After having a dream of escaping on a ship, he managed to travel 200 miles to the coast and his dream vessel, only to be enslaved once again and nearly starved to death. (One would think he would have been entitled to some issues at that point.) He was finally able to get free and find his family.

Amid all these tremendous challenges, he remarkably pushed harder into his faith (which is certainly not a given in cases of hardships like these). After Pat returned home, he had another dream. This time it was of the people of Ireland pleading with him to return, presumably to rescue them from spiritual poverty. He felt utterly unprepared and unqualified for such a calling, but eventually gave in to the need itself and returned to a nation that had only harmed, stripped, and enslaved him.

He did all this after returning to his “interrupted education” and spiritual training. He was not a particularly good student and struggled with Latin and apparently everything else. But to his defense, he had lost six plus years of his life living in a Netflixperiod mini-series. He was eventually ordained and by his request, sent to bring “the good news” to Ireland in answer to his dream.

Instead of ridiculing, accusing, or even judging these pagans … Patrick used their own culture to introduce his captors to the Great Emancipator. He publicly spoke against brutality and slavery. He refused to be ugly to those who believed differently than he did. He stood with the poor and championed women’s rights. He even opposed the cruel policies of his own home nation.

He built monasteries and churches. Used gifts to find favor with royalty while refusing gifts or special treatment for himself. He fed the poor and reportedly raised the dead. (That probably made for some weird Christmas dinners, “I’m sorry Seamus, I know you’ve been dead, but if you didn’t bring a gift you really can’t be a part of the Dirty Santa game. The numbers just won’t be even. Here, have some more eggnog.”

Patrick eventually even saw the sunset of the governmentsanctioned slave trade in Ireland.

He was, by all means, a man of the people.

He revealed the person of Jesus with unparalleled love and respect. As a result, he helped change the course of a nation. He was rewarded for his efforts with rebukes from his British superiors, incarceration with chains, and living under constant threats to his safety and life. Not the promotion he was expecting, I’m sure.

Of course, none of this has anything to do with bad beer made worse by green dye. And that’s okay. All of it has its place. It would just be a shame to take one without the other.

So to all you Irish and Irish at heart, the Patron Saint of Minor Holidays wishes you a Happy St. Patrick’s Day.

“May the sun shine warm upon your face; the rains fall soft upon your fields and until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of His hand.”

Cheers, my friends.

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 53 FUNNY YOU SHOULD ASK
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Of Delinquent Books . . .

And Their Words Still Changing Worlds for Good

It was long after Roger Hladky performed our wedding ceremony. I was a father, my children grown and flown, and an elder at our church in Oklahoma. Roger greeted me in the aisle of the Tabernacle, NJ church and spoke words everyone longs to hear at some moment in their life. I realized later that it was a blessing. He said that he admired people who do their craft, their calling, and do it well. It was simple and authentic, absent of any cliché, a genuine encouragement from mentor to protégé. I’ll never forget it. It was a dart that hit me between the eyes and stuck like the memory of a first kiss.

Like many others who have been blessed, we arrived in Memphis for Roger’s funeral prepared to serve and comfort and bless. But just like the upside down Kingdom of Jesus that Roger and Carolyn inhabited, where the weak become empowered, we left Memphis as recipients of grace and comfort and peace.

Friday night at the funeral home, I hugged Roger’s wife, Carolyn, as she said, “Isn’t he handsome!” more in the declaratory fashion rather than as a question. I paid my respects to Roger, a great tree fallen. A page has turned, a leaf drifts down to the earth, swayed and delayed for a time by a freshening wind of memories. He was 21 when he walked into a corn field to meet the man who was to interview him for a job as a school teacher in Tabernacle, NJ. It was a single question interview: “Do you love kids?”

Roger spent his entire life answering that question in ways that resound across our nation, in homes and hearts, and in places we will never know.

Susan Orlean writes in The Library Book, “In Senegal, the polite expression for saying someone died is to say his or her library has burned. Our minds and souls contain volumes made of our experiences and emotions; each individual’s consciousness is a collection of memories we’ve cataloged

and stored inside of us, a private library of a life lived. It is something that no one else can entirely share, one that burns down and disappears when we die. But if you can take something from that internal collection and share it…with one person or with the larger world, on the page or in a story recited…it takes on a life of its own.”

The building that housed the many chapters and volumes of Roger’s life has left us for now. But he left many books behind, still circulating with those who borrowed them, some of us book-borrowers singing and praying and remembering on a Saturday in Memphis.

We stood to complete the memorial service, delinquent book borrowers from Roger’s library who will never return those books. We will keep them and read them and remember a man who gave it all away because he loved kids.

Carolyn never left his side even in death. She held his hand as the words of the song The Lord Bless You and Keep You echoed through the gathering room of Memphis Funeral Home. She shepherded the casket and pallbearers to the hearse. She made space for her good friend Mary Lea to sit beside her at graveside. While standing graveside. a baby interrupted final rites, babbling and giggling, earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust.

Just north of that Tabernacle cornfield in 1963, where the question was asked that defined Roger’s life, in a Trenton hospital, another child interrupted the world, crying out during birth. Her name, Karen Mason. Roger coached her 7th grade basketball team. He invited her to church, as he invited so many others. She took him up on the invitation eventually and her life changed for good.

Roger and Carolyn, thanks for loving children, for loving the girl who one day would marry me and share life with me. You have answered that question in the cornfield so well. You have run the race and finished strong. And your books are still out there delinquent, still being read, still changing worlds for good.

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 59 A FRESH PERSPECTIVE
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A Children’s Puppet Ministry

Room at His Table Ministries

After decades of watching grandparents and parents pull up another chair to the dinner table, Chris Bennett sometimes wondered when his family table might reach capacity. As he grew older and married his wife, Pamela, they quickly realized there would always be room for someone in need. In fact, the greater truth is that there will always be room at God’s table. And out of that truth, RoomatHisTable (RAHT) Ministries came to life.

“RAHT is a children’s puppet ministry where our sole focus is to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ,” said Chris. “It’s not about denomination or venue. We’ll go anywhere as long as our puppets can share the message of love and salvation.”

Puppets seem to be a universal language of sorts. Through personalized skits, more than 65 puppets, props, special effects, and Christian lyrics set to familiar music, RAHT shows are guaranteed to make kids and adults smile and laugh all while connecting to their hearts.

Pamela says, “The puppets are just a vessel for sharing God’s word and they have a way of connecting with youth even more than a traditional Sunday School class might. The puppets speak straight to their impressionable hearts and help create life change.”

The Bennetts, along with their volunteer puppeteers, perform shows across the area in hopes of shining a light into this dark world. They pray they can help bring families back into the local church by speaking to the hearts and minds of children.

“No two shows are alike,” said Chris. “We tailor every performance to the theme of the event and the audience. Every one of our puppets has a diverse, unique character and backstory. They have ups and downs and very relatable experiences to share.”

RAHT performs at churches, Vacation Bible Schools, community events, assisted living facilities and more, but its best memories are from church camps.

“At camp, we see kids for five days in a row, so we are blessed to see transformation right before our eyes. One summer there was a camper who wouldn’t

talk or participate at all. Each day during our show, you could start the see the light coming into his eyes. By the end of the week, he was a completely different third grader. He was excited, engaged, singing, and making new friends,” Pamela shared.

RAHT would be honored to attend your children’s (or adult) event so you can witness firsthand the role puppetry can play in a life. No place is too big or too small. After all, there is always room at God’s table.

To connect or book a show with RoomatHisTable, visit their website There you’ll find more ministry details as well as ways to donate. You can find them on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, or watch their regular videos on YouTube.

If you think you might have a passion for puppetry, RAHT is always looking for volunteers. The last service the group provides is puppet training for churches who might be interested in creating an in-house children’s ministry. Reach out for more details.

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 61 SHINING A LIGHT

Tri County Tech and Downtown Kiwanis Club are proud to name the February Students of the Month. Our students of the month are chosen based on their character, leadership, and contribution to our community.

We are proud of their performance as students, role models, and future professionals.

About Tri County Tech

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Bartlesville Bombers

A Vision has Grown Into Practice Facility in the Mall

According to co-founder Chris Jones, the idea for Bartlesville Bombers Athletic Training came in March of 2019, when Bombers baseball parents Adam Augustine, T.J. Dickinson, and Chris Jones met up at Buffalo Wild Wings and discussed a big idea over a bottomless amount of chips and salsa.

What if Bartlesville could have better and more frequent opportunities to play baseball and softball? How could they make competitive athletics more accessible to area youth? The whole idea sounded like something Bartlesville was missing, and they were fueled with just enough chips and salsa to give it a try.

In 2019, the Bartlesville Bombers Youth Baseball Club started with one team of 7-under players. Today, they’ve grown to 11 teams, including one softball team. They have an indoor facility that can be rented by any team, and they’ve created a 501c3 for the Bombers so that they can raise funds to ensure financial background is not a barrier to area youth playing America’s National Pastime.

“We’ve grown faster than we ever imagined,” said cofounder and owner Jones. “We’re very grateful for the grace and patience our families have shown us while we figured this out.”

The group established an LLC to create the indoor facility that is located in Washington Park Mall. Converting a retail space into a training facility was a team effort and included foreman Dalton Higgins and the Dickinson, Shandy, Wells, Rovenstine, and Barham families. Owners Chris Jones, Adam Augustine, and Chase Allcott say the intent has always been to serve the community. “It was important to separate the team from the indoor facility,” said Jones. “We want to maintain our commitment that every dollar going into the 501c3 is used to enhance the experience for those players.”

The training facility was created to support the Bombers team, but the entire concept has been built on building relationships throughout the region. The Bombers Athletic Training has worked hard to collaborate with other teams and offer training opportunities to the public. They hosted Winter Workouts that were open to the public for free on Sundays in January. Operated completely by volunteers, they’ve tried to keep the pricing as low as possible to keep the place functioning, while eventually paying back to those who have invested in the space.

Just like the famous line in Field of Dreams , the Bartlesville Bombers believed “if you build it, they will come.”

Jones says The Bombers team is the priority, but the goal is to grow

into something that can benefit even more in the community. “The Bombers are our family and the motivation and inspiration behind what we’re doing,” added Jones. Jones says the leadership team knows that they’ll need more than the Bombers to keep their dream alive and growing. The Athletic Training facility offers reasonable rates and packages for any team to be able to use the space without ever paying more than $45 for a one-hour session. “There are also opportunities to get a team in there to practice for as low as $12.50/hour,” said Jones.

The athletic training facility plans to incorporate data and technology to their program and bring new opportunities to the patrons of their facility. In addition, Jones says Washington Park Mall has been so accommodating and they’re very happy to be partnering with them.

“The dream is for the mall to be our incubator to test the market and our long-term location for cage rentals,” said Jones. The Bombers plan includes building a larger, state-of-the-art facility to provide additional open space. They also look forward to working with Price Fields to encourage more tournaments for the area, which means more opportunity for youth — and economic development for Bartlesville.

“Our sign just recently went up and in somewhat of a serendipitous fashion,” said Jones.  “On the south side of the mall, our sign replaced what was Buffalo Wild Wings.” Where the entire chips and salsa fueled training facility field of dreams began.

Jones would like to give special thanks to T. J. Dickinson, Randy Shandy, Dalton Higgins, Nathan Barham, Aaron Rovenstine, Chris Wells, Randy Autry, Harry Wright, and everyone at Washington Park Mall. For more information go to bomberstraining, call 918-236-8738, or email bombersathletictraining@

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 63 SPORTS

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By Faith We Begin

Legacies Last Beyond What Man Has Made

I knew in my heart the sense of I have felt this before. I went to my book of quotes and scanned the pages and then I found it. The quote that spoke the volumes of what I was seeing for our city now that Bartlesville is becoming a beacon.

“I imagined it. I wrote it. But, I guess I never thought I’d see it” penned Ken Follett about his novel of over 1,000 pages called The Pillars of the Earth. Yet, he did.

He constructed his novel and then trilogy series and a prequel all based upon his first idea of the people who built the Cathedrals in the 12th century. He wanted to write of those with mundane lives who reached for the eternal. The ones who lived in feudal times and constructed what they could not even fathom, yet somehow left legacies we still see to this day. I feel like this is happening for us now.

I learned very young that reading can teach you about the world. It can open your eyes to places you have never seen, meet characters that cause you to reflect and teach you what you never knew you needed to learn. I am rereading all my favorite novels of over 1,000 pages because I feel like I have changed over the last 10 years and I want to see what I learn now from the books that influenced me years ago. I never like to have the expectation of reading to be “just finishing the book.” I would rather just read and let the journey be the journey.

The words will say what needs to be heard.

Ken Follett had the idea to pen the stories and waited 10 years before he wrote the first sentence. He sensed he needed to travel the world and acquire a certain depth to his words and he went onto visit the Cathedrals all over the world. He felt his life was too shallow and vain, therefore he needed more experience with the ideas he had for this novel.

He felt intrinsically that the stories within needed to be told, and although he didn’t have all the answers or knew how it would end … yet by faith, he began.

He weaves a tapestry of many stories within one large one and the overall idea is the telling of the Cathedrals being built and the inner workings of the money being raised for them. It’s an epic tale and one reads from the perspective of seeing the ideas from one or two becoming many. The community being ushered into working together and then one learns about the intricate details involving construction. You learn about the timbers being felled and set. You learn about the masons cutting the stones and setting them one by one, and how they construct the Cathedral as such it rises into the heavens. You learn of the artists who paint and the gilders who gild and the scaffolding that has to be built to set the spire for all to see. The spire is the highest point upon the Church and it serves as a beacon of hope to those who look upon it. Many travel to

behold the works of man unto God and they sit in the pews and look up, around and within.

There is silence in the sanctuary and one wonders what price was paid to behold the awesome finished Cathedral, a vision of one becomes a ceremony for all.

My most favorite details are the people. You are led down his imagination paths and each one has their own story. We come to know the intimate details of their lives and who they truly are and the motives within their hearts.

Many builders never got to see what they started because it took a lifetime to construct something so glorious. They toiled day and night and never saw the end of what they had started. The nearby villages sacrificed and benefited because deep inside they came to learn that this vision was beyond what they first came to learn. They sought to be a part of a majestic movement that one day would be seen with their eyes of what was once only a vision to one, perhaps two. Some had pure motives, some had ones for only self and some had motives that preyed upon the poorest to serve the richest. I will report that many times over, the light beats out the darkness as he takes us on the journey of triumph. I believe that we see a desire for good to prevail and they endure to tell the tale.

It’s the story of everyman and everyday.

I drive around and see the changes and begin to catch the vision. Much like this city I look up, around, and within … there is a newness being seen and the skies are smiling. Legacies that last beyond what man has made. Hope is here and the world will know about us for generations to come. The stories of the people and what really matters.

We don’t have all the answers, yet by faith we begin.

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 65 FROM THE HEART
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The Road Less Traveled Taking a Reverse Perspective

On the Road this month is taking a look in the rearview mirror. I’m typically not a reverse kind of gal. It’s just not my favorite gear.

In fact, one time, way down Texas way, I put my pickup in “R” and began backing down my country driveway. I lived seven cattleguards deep in the middle of nowhere, so I didn’t even bother to look over my shoulder or in the mirror.

I forgot one of the ranch pickups was parked behind me, and yep, you guessed it — I smacked it good. Didn’t help that I owned both vehicles ... Reverse just isn’t my forte’.

But in life, sometimes the perspective we gain from looking over our shoulder is invaluable to instilling wisdom, understanding, and even gratitude in our attitude.

So ... with that in mind —

Hop in as I shift this rig in reverse and let’s go down the road less traveled as I share a little personal reflection, because there’s a time to refrain — and there’s a time to speak up.

This one’s the later ... you might want to fasten your seatbelt.

It was in the Fall of 2015 that devastation rang my doorbell and kept visiting my home for two years — over and over and over like an uninvited guest who’d long since worn his welcome out; stalking me like I was a Boone & Crocket trophy buck, just trying to get me in its crosshairs and drop me in the grass.

It took all the strength I had to face each day. It would show up in my driveway, on a bench outside the place I worked, in my nightmares - there was no escaping this schemed out plan of the enemy to crush my heart, destroy my family, and steal my joy…

Small-town, Texas became Heartbreak Hill for this life runner — and I was about to throw in the towel and give up…

*But God showed up one day when I was crumpled and crying on my bedroom floor. He spoke to my heart and even gave me a dream to dream and the courage to move away to another state, to a huge metropolis — All. By. Myself.

I began to heal in a town called Tulsa at a place called Oral Roberts University as I chased the dream of finishing a college degree that I had started decades earlier.  And, because God is soooo good, he also gave me the perfect job in a rural paradise called Osage County at the same time.

All that was more than enough.

No more crosshairs.

No more stalkers.

No more talkers.

Just Jesus and beauty and healing.

This was enough.

Going forward, I never thought I’d love again, heck, I never thought I’d trust again — *but God.

It just so happens, there was a man who also had experienced tragedy in a Fall season of his life almost 20 years back.

A man of character and integrity with a kind heart who had settled in - to raising his kids alone and living a bachelor’s life.

When I first got to Oklahoma, he was living in another state — but as only God can do, he ended up moving back to the place he was raised — Osage County.

Instead of crosshairs, it was now crossed paths. And something new began ... and almost three years after our paths crossed, he changed my last name.

You know, maybe there was a purpose to the tragedy back all those years ago, and even so with some tragedy that’s happened since. Maybe God had and has all things under control — the whole time. Maybe it really is true that He can work everything for our good (even life’s worst moments) — and maybe He had plans to do so even before devastation rang the doorbell…

Maybe, just maybe, He’s planned the celebration on the other side of your tragedy, before the tragedy ever came calling.

I’ve come to believe that He’s just that good.

So, my shotgun rider, if you’re out there in the crosshairs of something hell-sent that’s meant to take you out — resist the temptation to give up, give in, or get under the bed and hide. Instead, keep it in “D” when the road gets rough and keep moving forward — because the day is coming when you’ll look in your rearview mirror and see it all clearer than you do today.

Take heart, your best days are yet to come.

Thanks for going “On the Road” with me this month!

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 67 ON THE ROAD


“My commitment to service is my commitment to you!” 36 Years of Real Estate Knowledge Jeff Hall, Broker/Associate (Licensed Broker in OK and NC) 124 SE Frank Phillips Boulevard, Bartlesville, OK 74003 918.440.9199

Copan’s Pie Princess

Peggy Medlen Has Been at Popular Restaurant for 23 Years

There aren’t many people in NE Oklahoma who have made more pies than Peggy Medlen, baker at the Copan Restaurant and Truck Stop. In fact, Medlen says she’s made over 30,000 pies in the 23 years she’s been at the restaurant. This year, Copan Truck Stop celebrates its 30 year anniversary and one of the tastiest ingredients in their success is the hard work and dedication of Medlen.

In 2000, Medlen’s sister was working at Copan Truck Stop and got her an interview with owner Donna Chaney, who passed in 2019. She was hired on the spot to be a prep cook, but after about a year and a half she took on the role of main baker. “It was interesting,” said Medlen with a laugh. Medlen says she has been told she can’t retire until she’s 80. Lucky for Copan Restaurant fans, that’s at least another 30,000 pies to go.

Medlen earned her associates degree in baking management at OSU Tech and works five or six days a week making cinnamon rolls, pies, rolls, biscuits, gravy, vegetable soup and more. Medlen confesses she prefers making pies to the heavy cinnamon rolls, and puts her heart and soul into the craft of baking. “To be honest,” said Medlen, “you don’t know what you’re going to end up with in the end. You can follow the same recipe ten times and the last time will mess up!”

Peg the pie pro says what she loves about Copan Restaurant is the people. “If you work with people you don’t care to be around it’s not fun,” said Medlen, “(we have) a fun environment. When you’re around people where everything just clicks, that’s what makes it great.”

Coworker Brooke Burdick has been a server at the restaurant for almost 25 years and has worked with Peggy for most of her time there. “I’m probably her biggest fan and always give her credit when it’s due,” said Burke. Burke says Peg is a team player and takes pride in the restaurant. “She truly devotes herself to (the job),” adds Burke, “when Donna passed away, she helped our current manager navigate through ordering, scheduling and many things in between. She really is a great coworker.”

Medlen says the customers are also a welcome perk to working at Copan Restaurant. The gentlemen at the front table (jokingly and fondly called the liars table) are there every day. Peg says she enjoys giving them a hard time when she comes up front to get a drink. Even the thought of the regulars bring a laugh to Medlen. There is joy throughout every word she has to share about her work at Copan Restaurant.

In her time off, Medlen enjoys being a part of the Fraternal Order of the Eagles and playing bingo. She said she hasn’t had a vacation in a while but is really looking forward to

visiting Branson again soon. After making over 300 pies for Thanksgiving in 2022, Medlen was ready for a break.

In the meantime, customers can order any number of delicious items from the restaurant that sits just six and a half miles from the Kansas state line. Medlen was tickled to share all of the choices, truly taking joy in her work.

Pie orders are available any day of the week with choices like cherry, peach, apple, blueberry, raisin, coconut meringue, chocolate meringue, and lemon meringue. They have German chocolate and peanut butter, too. Copan Restaurant also has rolls and biscuits to order, sometimes providing biscuits and gravy for local schools, and club sandwiches for the Dewey Football Team.

Medlen seems to understand that baking is about more than making food to eat, it’s about creating some special memories when families and friends come together to share a meal.

“The food is great, we’re getting ready to celebrate our 30th anniversary,” adds Medlen, “I will be here as long as I can, I have no intentions of going anywhere.”

70 bmonthly | MARCH 2023

On the Street Where He Lived...

If I close my eyes, I can still see him. He had a full head of white hair and was always dressed nicely for a man mowing his lawn. As best as my senior memory recalls, he wore glasses but seldom ever looked up. After all, a man whose intentions were to mow his front yard on a perfect angle couldn’t afford to look anywhere but straight ahead. He lived around the corner from where we had just built a new house back in the early 80’s and as I was driving

home for the first time on the street where he lived, I saw him for the very first time. I had probably been picking up one of our kids as I remember driving north and looking to my left. That’s how clear my memory is about the person I recall as “the man who mowed on an angle.” I never learned his name or stopped to introduce myself even though I was smitten with his mowing method.

I didn’t mow much back then but when we decided we wanted to finish raising our boys in the country, we bought a riding mower with a 42-inch deck. I have to admit that the riding mower sparked my interest and the time I spent mowing our 2.5 acre lot once a week became almost like a time of meditation. At least I had a lot of time to think and it didn’t take me long to remember the white haired man who mowed his lawn in a way I’d never seen before. I never took up his method, but I did start trying to mow in the straight lines I could. It’s funny to think about the reasons we remember someone for so long. Someone whose name we never knew. Yet he remains as clear to me as he did the first time I saw him that day so long ago.

Mowing became a habit for me, and I continued my habit until I was forced to stop because of the bad knees I developed due to an auto-immune disorder. And I miss those times so very much. People who were driving or walking by would often stop and compliment our lawn and it always makes me wonder why I never took the time to stop and tell the man who mowed at an angle how very much I admired his work. I know his neighbors appreciated him as well and I hope they took the time to tell him so.

The older I’ve become, the more I’ve realized that it doesn’t take much time to say the “little things”. Little things like telling your young neighbors what a good job they’re doing raising their kids. Small stuff such as “you look lovely in that color” or “you certainly have a well- trained dog.” It’s this little stuff that builds over time and grows into a habit you’ll never regret. It’s the small kindnesses you show that just might help the next person you see who is mowing at a perfect angle on a hot summer day. If I’d known then what I know now, I might just have made a friend.

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 7 1 ONCE UPON A TIME
72 bmonthly | MARCH 2023 ForrestManor Nursing Center “Caring is our Tradition” Transportation to Owasso & Tulsa for acute care hospital services. Highest wages in the area based on a survey completed with all other area nursing homes. THERAPY & REHABILITATION Forrest Manor has a long track record of providing premier, skilled care for its residents. Trusted by individuals and their families to continue recovery when leaving the hospital and to enhance residents’ lives by promoting independence and safety. Forrest Manor provides rehabilitation services by caring, licensed therapists. Forrest Manor offers: • Physical Therapy • Occupational Therapy • Speech Therapy • Restorative Therapy • Personalized Care • Social Services Social • Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation • Planned Activities • Skilled Care Skilled • Respite Care • Short & Long Term Care • Hospice • Senior Fitness Center Senior • Theater Room Room • Private Party Room • Elegant Private Dining Room Elegant • Meals planned by a Registered Dietician • Complimentary transportation to Complimentary doctors’ appointments • Highest wages in the area based on a survey with nursing homes a • Cigarettes included in per diem • Transportation to Owasso & Tulsa • And much more! SERVICES 1410 North Choctaw, Dewey, Oklahoma 74029 (918) 534-3355 • Forrest Manor is excited about contracting with Grace Hospice to empower our residents with even more choices in their individual plans of care!

Sippin’ Sweet!

Area Company Has a New Focus, Same Great Taste

Sippin’ Sweet Co. has a new focus, owner Emily Wiswell said. She’s moving away from custom cakes and instead focusing on her food truck and catering for special events. Fans of the physical location don’t need to worry, though; while much has changed, the most important things are staying the same.

Sippin’ Sweet Co. will still be offering boba teas, weekly lunch specials, and bakery items in the case at their storefront in downtown Dewey.

Wiswell fell in love with boba tea 12 years ago in Houston while traveling for work. When she was laid off from her oil and gas employer in 2020, she saw an opportunity. She began writing a business plan and found a private investor to help her get started in 2021. Since then, she’s been overwhelmed with the support from the Bartlesville community.

Her food truck is available to book for special events, with Wiswell creating custom menus as needed. She also attends events in the area, ranging from Sunfest to Boofest to class reunions and state fairs.  She also offers catering for special events, parties and weddings. Everything is homemade, and she specializes in charcuterie boards.

“One of my favorite things to do is to put together a beautiful table and see people’s reactions and how much they love it,” Wiswell said.

Of course, Sippin’ Sweet Co.’s storefront in Dewey remains an important part of the business.  “So many of my customers say they used to drive all the way to Owasso to get boba tea,” Wiswell said. “They’re impressed when they find out they can get it in Dewey.”

Wiswell loves introducing people to boba tea, a dessert tea originating in Taiwan and now popular on social media platforms. Traditional boba tea combines black tea and milk with flavored tapioca pearls, but now customers have all kinds of flavors to choose from.  “If someone’s never tried boba, this is the place to go,” Wiswell said. “I walk people through the experience.”

She starts with their flavor palate: are they more of a coffee drinker or do they like fruity drinks? Have they tried boba before? It’s important to Wiswell that people end up with a drink they will love. She

provides samples to allow people to figure out what appeals to them.

Wiswell’s personal favorite, a black sugar tea with traditional tapioca, remains a popular choice. One of her customers developed a drink called Bikini Bottom, which combines kiwi and peach flavors with popping boba, a dessert pearl filled with fruit juice that literally pops in the drink. A soda pop version of boba made with Sprite and popping bobas is popular among teens and adult customers alike.

Sippin’ Sweet Co. also offers a lunch menu with weekly specials, which can be found on its Facebook page. All of the food is homemade, and popular menu items include Indian tacos, chicken salad, deviled eggs, and a Louisiana Alfredo pasta bowl.

“It’s been an amazing adventure,” Wiswell said. “It’s been a challenge starting a new business, but God provides. When I take the time and put God first in everything, he truly does provide.”

Sippin’ Sweet Co., located at 302 E. Don Tyler in Dewey, is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, with extended hours until 7 p.m. on Thursday.

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74 bmonthly | MARCH 2023 Need help? Give us a call! MGB Plumbing & Heating 918.335.0533 Serving Bartlesville & surrounding area since 1979. Bartlesville’s Premier Magazine delivered monthly to Your Front Door! Just $48 a year Subscribe Today
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Quality Medical Care . . . For an Affordable Rate at Family HealthCare Clinic

Health care is important for everyone, whether it is for an annual exam, to find out what is causing your cough, or for a suspected lump in your breast. Yet, sometimes a simple visit to the clinic is avoided because of cost or inconvenience. Family HealthCare Clinic has been offering services at an affordable rate with appointments easily available since 1984.

Family HealthCare Clinic is a 501(c) nonprofit medical clinic with a mission to provide accessible healthcare appointments and education regardless of medical insurance. They treat adults and children in a convenient location at 1820 W Hensley Blvd. Patients experience quality medical care in a welcoming environment from caring providers who listen to the needs of their patients.

“We provide low-cost appointments for people without insurance or those on Medicaid (SoonerCare),” said Molly Collins, executive director. “Our appointments start at $40 and are based on a sliding scale. In 2022, 90% of our patients selfreported earnings of less than $15,000 per year.”

Family HealthCare Clinic has two nurse practitioners with over 50 years of medical experience between them, and they are available Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. They can see patients for colds and flu, respiratory conditions, ear and sinus infections, diabetes, hypertension, cholesterol, and more. The clinic also provides cancer screenings, exams for reproductive health, tuberculosis skin tests, sports physicals, and low-cost labs. Appointments are made by calling 918-3364822 with same-day appointments often available.

“We hear stories of how patients might otherwise put off getting needed care until they were in a medical emergency,” said Collins. “Our clinic provides a way that patients don’t have to jeopardize their family’s financial situation to receive medical care.”

Twenty-six-year-old Margie put off getting a lump checked after she found out that her Medicaid had been canceled. She had three children and felt she could not afford to pay for private

care. She kept her worries to herself, even as her situation grew progressively worse. She heard about Family HealthCare Clinic and made an appointment. Thanks to Access to Care, a program that receives United Way funding, she paid only $40 for the visit.

In addition, Family HealthCare Clinic provides free mammograms to women and men who need the lifesaving screening but are unable to afford one. Patients come for an exam and are given a coupon to go to Jane Phillips Medical Center Radiological Services for the mammogram. Family HealthCare Clinic then pays for the screening. In 2022, the clinic provided 69 coupons and saved patients an $57,000 in out-of-pocket breast cancer screening costs. This program is fully funded through the Family HealthCare Clinic’s Miles for Mammogram 5K fundraiser. Held annually in September, this year’s race will be held September 30th at Tower Center at Unity Square. Registration will open in June.

“Without the community, donations, and fundraisers, the clinic could not fulfill its mission,” said Collins. “Our clinic is a Bartlesville Regional United Way member organization and depends on the annual allocation to keep both appointment and lab fees affordable for those who need it most. All of our fundraisers seek to support the daily operations of the clinic, provide monthly health care appointment discounts, provide the clinic with the ability to partner with other organizations to provide services for their clients and staff, and finally to provide free breast cancer screenings. Every dollar that is raised goes right back in the clinic and all money stays local.”

This month, Family HealthCare Clinic is embarking on “The Blood Pressure Project”  offering a $25 appointment and free blood pressure check for hypertension, along with a limited distribution of free blood pressure cuff monitors and fingertip pulse oximeters. Janice Shippy, APRN, DNP, will also host a free “Healthy Blood Pressure and Hypertension Education” presentation at the Bartlesville Public Library on Tuesday, March 21 at 12 p.m.

MARCH 2023 | bmonthly 7 7 HEALTH & WELLNESS

Colonel Sanders

A Look at the Life of Harland David Sanders

Harland David Sanders was born in Henryville, Indiana, September 9, 1890. Sanders was one of four children. His father passed away when Harland was only five years old, requiring his mother to support the family. While his mother was working, Harland was tasked with scurrying for food and cooking for his siblings.

Sanders falsified his birth certificate and enlisted in the Army at the age of 16. He served in Cuba for several months before receiving an honorable discharge. Following his military service, Sanders worked in various trades like blacksmith, wagoner, and train conductor, and later practiced law in Little Rock, Arkansas until a courtroom brawl ruined both his reputation and career. In 1920, at age 30, he began operating a ferry boat business on the Ohio River between Jeffersonville, Indiana, and Louisville, Kentucky.

In 1935, Kentucky Governor Ruby Laffoon commissioned Sanders as an honorary Colonel. In 1950, Sanders received a second commission, after which he started wearing a white suit and grew a beard, he bleached to match his white hair. He never wore anything else in public during the last 20 years of his life, using a heavy wool suit in the winter and a light cotton suit in the summer. The image was a great advertising gimmick at the time and was a fitting image of a Colonel.

It all began during the Great Depression in a Corbin, Kentucky, gas station where, in 1930, Sanders began preparing meals to serve truck drivers. Initially, fried chicken was not even on the menu because it took too long to prepare. Sanders’ country ham and steak dinners became quite popular and soon he opened a restaurant across the street. In 1939, to speed up the process, Sanders began using pressure cookers to cook fried chicken, which he flavored with his signature blend using 11 different spices.

Sanders had a strong sense of marketing his business, which would eventually take him far. Sanders began painting advertisements for his Shell gas station on barns for miles around, after which a local Standard Oil competitor began painting over Sanders’ signs. Sanders was known to be a hot head at times and when he heard the news, he rushed to the scene with two Shell Oil executives, aiming to catch

the competitor in the act of defacing his marketing. When confronted, the competitor grabbed a gun and shot and killed one of the Shell executives. Sanders returned fire and struck the competitor in the shoulder. The competitor would later be sentenced to 18 years in prison for the murder.

Sanders was 65 and had started collecting Social Security when he first incorporated Kentucky Fried Chicken. He drove his 1946 Ford around the country, signing up new franchisees. In 1952, he signed his first franchise deal with Pete Harman, who owned a large restaurant in Salt Lake City, Utah. The Harman restaurant pioneered the famous bucket container and Don Anderson, a sign painter hired by Harman, coined the name Kentucky Fried Chicken.

Sanders obtained a patent protecting his method of pressure frying chicken in 1962, and trademarked the phrase “It’s Finger Lickin’ Good” in 1963. The company’s rapid expansion to more than 600 locations became overwhelming for the aging Sanders. In 1964, then 73 years old, he sold the Kentucky Fried Chicken corporation for $2 million. He became a salaried brand ambassador, making appearances and starring in commercials, and retained much influence over executives and the franchisees.

In 1973, Sanders sued Heublein Inc., which was the parent company of Kentucky Fried Chicken, claiming misuse of his image in promoting products he had not helped develop. In 1975, Heublein Inc. unsuccessfully sued Sanders for libel after Sanders publicly described their gravy as being “sludge” with a “wallpaper taste.” Sanders was publicly and vocally displeased with the quality of the food being served by the franchises.

Sanders passed away in December, 1980, at the age of 90. He was buried in his characteristic white suit and black western string tie at the Cave Hill Cemetery in Louisville, Kentucky. Since Sanders’ death, KFC has given new life to the Colonel Sanders character through many well-known entertainers including several Saturday Night Live cast members, Rob Lowe, Ray Liotta, and Oklahoma’s own Reba McEntire.

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