Page 1

MAY 2019

Be inspired!

Meet our 3 Awesome Mom winners

Sleep in a treehouse? Unique accommodations for your next Oklahoma vacation

Discover something new in our 100 Days of Summer guide

+ dozens of May festivals and events for family fun


PRE SENTS KICK O SUM FF ME MAY 30TH R WITH A SU M M E CELE BRAT R ION

Memorial Day - Labor Day Free Family Fun begins at 10:30 a.m. every Thursday

LEARN MORE

@OklahomaHoF

1400 Classen Drive (NW 13th Street and Shartel Avenue) | 405.235.4458 | oklahomahof.com


FEATURING: BOWLING • GRAVITY ROPES • LASER TAG • 100+ ARCADE GAMES & MORE OKLAHOMA CITY (405) 751-4900

TULSA (918) 447-1200

1441 W. Memorial Road • Oklahoma City, OK 73114

7830 S. Santa Fe Ave. W • Tulsa, OK 74132

BIRTHDAY OFFER!

50

$

BIRTHDAY BONUS DOUBLE ARCADE PLAY

VALUE

FOR ALL PARTY GUESTS

1595

PACKAGES STARTING AT $

Offer to be used on or before 6/25/19. Must mention promo code LMJA19 at time of booking. Excludes online bookings. Birthday party must be held by September 24, 2019, in order to redeem offer. Offer not valid on holidays or with any other offer or discount. Reservations required, 10 child minimum. Certain restrictions may apply. *Gravity Ropes and Laser Tag have a height requirement of 48” to play.

EVERYDAY OFFER!

$ FREE 20 IN ARCADE PLAY

WITH PURCHASE OF $20 IN ARCADE PLAY!

Valid for arcade game play only. Card is not entitled to a cash refund for unused portion, unless required by law. One coupon per person, per day. Expires June 25, 2019. All promotional FUNcard values valid for arcade game play only and cannot be used as cash or payment towards an activity, food, beverage or group event. Offers subject to change, may end at any time without notice and cannot be combined with other offers. Must bring coupon in from original advertising. Copies or duplicates or digital renditions will not be honored.


Features 6 Best Beaches Near & Far Arcadia Lake and Lake Murray 8 100 Days of Summer Discover unique things to do & coupons to use! 12 Star Spangled Salute 7 tips for enjoying this exciting air show 14 Meet our Awesome Mom Contest Winners Be inspired by these 3 amazing moms

In Every Issue 20 Calendar of Events 100+ events to enjoy with your family including Mother’s Day ideas

46

34 Foster Families Powerful lessons from a local foster family 38 Exploring Oklahoma with Children Teepees, wagons and other unique accommodations around the state 46 Kid Review Annual Chuck Wagon Festival

14

38

Geekapalooza Coming Soon: The third annual Geekapalooza: A STEAM Festival for Kids is scheduled for June 22. Find the details about this fun event sponsored by MetroFamily and Girl Scouts Western Oklahoma at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/ geekapalooza.

dance performances and other family activities, as well as the opportunity to take photos with your favorite characters. Two lucky winners will receive a memorable experience valued at $210 per pair. Enter by May 15!

Only Online Mother’s Day Fun: Find fun (and sometimes free) events and ways to celebrate Mother’s Day at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/ mothers-day. More Awesome Moms: We are in “awe” of our many awesome mom entries this year and we feel like you will be inspired by them, too. Read about the three winners starting on page 14 and find all of the nominations at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/ mom-inspiration. Show Your Child’s Teacher Some Love: Find great teacher gift ideas that he/she will appreciate at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/ teacher-gift-ideas.

4 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

Enter to win! www.metrofamilymagazine.com/contests Toddler Palooza Giveaway: Toddler Palooza is happening May 25 and we’re giving away four VIP tickets and meet and greet passes! The event includes facepainting, moonbounces,

Hilton Anatole Contest: Escape the heat with a cool family getaway! We’re giving away a two-night stay at Dallas’s historic Hilton Anatole. The prize is valued at $589 and includes complimentary valet, JadeWaters pool admission for four and a $100 food and beverage credit. Enter to win from May 15 to June 3.


SARAH WITH HER KIDS IN 1996 ON MOUNT SCOTT, WICHITA MOUNTAINS NEAR LAWTON

Publisher

Sarah Taylor

Dear MetroFamily readers,

Managing Editor

Mother’s Day is here and soon those of us who are blessed to be called or considered “Mom” will be accepting well wishes and gratitude along with perhaps a family dinner, cards and, if you’re lucky, a nap.

Hannah Schmitt

Assistant Editor Lindsay Cuomo

Contributing Writers

Erin Page & Heide Brandes

Contributing Photographers Bridget Pipkin & Kimera Gonzalez

Art Director Stacy Noakes

Marketing Director Callie Collins

Sales

Athena Delce, Dana Price

Project Manager Jessica Misun

Office/Distribution Kathy Alberty

Contact us

318 NW 13th St, Ste 101 OKC OK 73103

Based on my years of experience as a mom, I was thinking of other things we should accept about motherhood. And true confession, I wish I would have been better at all of these when my kids were younger. Maybe you can learn from my shortcomings! Here’s my “acceptance” list for you: • Accept that motherhood is your priority but that you shouldn’t lose yourself in the process. Be intentional about taking time for you. Follow your interests, practice self care, go on a date with your significant other or some favorite girlfriends. Those times away will help you be a better mom. • Accept help—and seek help. It’s impossible to do it all! Figure out where you need help

and then specifically ask for it. And if help is offered and it’s wise to accept, by all means do so! • Accept that your role is not to do everything for your children but to be their guide. Which leads to this one: • Accept that you aren’t perfect and that’s okay! And that your children aren’t (and won’t be) perfect and that’s okay, too! We all learn best from our mistakes. Apologize when needed, adjust, apply and move on. May you enjoy a wonderful Mother’s Day being appreciated for all you do for your children and family. And enjoy accepting the accolades you so richly deserve. Blessings, Sarah P.S.: Be inspired by our three Awesome Moms featured starting on page 14. And read all of the nominations at www. metrofamilymagazine.com/mom-inspiration.

Phone: 405-601-2081 Fax: 405-445-7509 sarah@metrofamilymagazine.com www.metrofamilymagazine.com

MetroFamily Magazine is published monthly. Copyright 2019 by Inprint Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Articles and advertisements in MetroFamily do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the magazine or Inprint Publishing, Inc. We do not assume responsibility for statements made by advertisers or editorial contributors. The acceptance of advertising by MetroFamily does not constitute an endorsement of the products, services, or information. We do not knowingly present any product or service which is fraudulent or misleading in nature. Circulation audited by

Proud member of

This Month’s Cover One of our Cover Kid Search winners, Eden, 7, loves playing with her family and friends, dancing, swimming, drawing and loving on her little brother, Easton. Her favorite place to eat is Whataburger and her latest obsessions are unicorns, slime and LOL Dolls.

Also a member of Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, Edmond Chamber of Commerce & Moore Chamber of Commerce

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

5


NEAR & FAR: Oklahoma Beaches to Kick Off Summer Memorial Day marks the unofficial start to summer and nothing says summer like a trip to the beach. But you don’t have to hop on a plane or plan a long road trip from landlocked Oklahoma to enjoy a day of sand and sun. In fact, the state is home to thousands of miles of shoreline to be enjoyed by swimmers and splashers. Here are options for whether you want to stay close to home or venture outside the metro. BY HANNAH SCHMITT

Near ARCADIA LAKE Considering its urban setting just north of Edmond, Arcadia Lake feels worlds away from the Oklahoma City metro. The picturesque setting on the Deep Fork River is enhanced by activities like equestrian and hiking trails, disc golf courses, picnic facilities and swimming beaches.

ARCADIA LAKE. PHOTO PROVIDED.

Paddle boats are available for rent on-site between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Keep in mind swim beaches are open sunrise to sunset and weekend admission to the lake is $7 per vehicle (up to five passengers). Swimmers under 13 are required to wear a life vest. Learn more at www.edmondok.com.

Far LAKE MURRAY Two hours south of Oklahoma City sits Lake Murray, a body of water known for its crystal blue hue and familyfriendly activities. For low-key swimming adventures, try Sunset Beach on the east side of the lake. The halfmile stretch of sand is perfect for dipping your toes. More adventure-seeking families should head to Lake Murray Water Sports where, for $10 per hour, swimmers can try out water trampolines and slides. Learn more at www.lakemurraywatersports.com. For more ideas on beaches to explore in the state, see a full list at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/beach. LAKE MURRAY STATE PARK. PHOTO COURTESY OF OKLAHOMA TOURISM & RECREATION DEPARTMENT

6 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019


Jump Into a Great Home! 6 time Metro Family Favorite • Mondays @ Metro Summer Camp • Parent-Tot Classes • Preschool Gymnastics • Recreational Classes • Tumbling Classes • Competitive Team

• Youth & Adult Aerial Silks • Private Lessons • Birthday Parties • Play Group Outings • Easy online enrollment

Enroll today for Summer Classes & Camps! 848-5308 www.metrogymokc.com

7420 Broadway Ext., Suite A, OKC, OK 73116 Recreational Class Facility (Suite A) AAU Competitive Team Training Center (Suite F) email: metrogymokc@sbcglobal.net

www.crestoneridge.com

We help growing families flourish.

BIG FUN FOR GROUPS

! SAVE BIG GROUPSSAS LOW AS TICKET

00

20

$

*

EACH PLUS TAX

UR TRIP PS PLAN YO OU GS.COM/GR SIXFLA

NOW AT Frontier City and White Water CONCERTS DIVE-IN MOVIES Bay are big on thrills and big Skillet Concert Fridays July 5 - 26 on value with exciting rides, May 18 LATE NIGHT slides, shows, and more. Casting Crowns WEDNESDAYS June 22 June 5 - July 29 Book your group trip online For King & Country and SAVE OVER 50%!

August 10

> Prioritize and pay down debt. > Save for college and family vacations.

> Teach good financial habits. WymerBrownlee.com * Kyle Brownlee, Senior Wealth Advisor. Securities offered through HD Vest

GROUPS – THINK BIG, SAVE BIG, GO BIG!

Investment Services®, Member FINRA/SIPC, Advisory services offered through HD Vest Advisory Services®, Insurance services offered through HD Vest Insurance Agency, LLC. Wymer Brownlee Wealth Strategies is not a registered broker/dealer or registered investment advisory firm.

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

7


Summer fun! BY HANNAH SCHMITT

Memorial Day is just around the corner, marking the unofficial start of summer: the glorious season of long days, late nights, vacations, sweat and those dreaded moments of the kids getting stir-crazy. We’ve put together 100 ideas to keep your kids busy between Memorial Day and Labor Day so you hopefully won’t have to hear “I’m bored” quite as many times.

Find an interactive version of this list at

www.metrofamilymagazine.com/100-days • Hop aboard the Oklahoma City Streetcar and adventure to a new destination

• Identify some new flower species as you stroll through Myriad Botanical Gardens

• Go out to lunch overlooking the animal habitats at the Oklahoma City Zoo’s new Lotus Pavilion

• Test the slides at three different metro parks and rate your favorites

• Have fun pretending and learning at Okie Kids Playground, open for ages 6 and under*

• Check out an antique fire truck at the Oklahoma Firefighters Museum

• Experience a new culture by eating at an ethnic restaurant together

• Take a road trip to the Toy & Action Figure Museum in Pauls Valley

• Go prehistoric and take a selfie with the giant Ice Age skeletons at Sam Noble Museum in Norman

• Enjoy the June 15 presentation of “The Nightingale” by students of Classical Ballet School*

• Go canoeing on Lake Overholser

• Beat the heat at an indoor play place

• Pick summer produce at a local farm

• Browse the public art at the Oklahoma State Capitol

• Meet new friends at a Vacation Bible School

• Grab a frisbee and head to a local disc golf course

• Learn to swim or brush up on swim skills just in time for summer fun through the Jump Start Clinics at Goldfish Swim School*

• Check out a new audiobook from your local library

• Enroll in a family cooking class at Sur La Table • Enroll in a summer camp • Dust off the bikes and enjoy a family ride • Try a new flavor at Capitals Ice Cream in Midtown • Enjoy story time at an area coffee shop or bookstore • Schedule your family’s viewing of the blockbuster summer exhibition “Van Gogh, Monet, Degas: The Mellon Collections of French Art” showing at Oklahoma City Museum of Art, June 22-Sept. 22*

• Use a book to press summer flowers from your garden • Spend a day on the water at RIVERSPORT Adventures • Learn horse riding skills at the exciting camps hosted at Cottonwood Creek Ranch* • Volunteer together to help a local cause • Explore the 90+ miles of trails in OKC Parks • Go fishing in a local pond or lake • Go out for a snow cone • Gather a group and enjoy paint balling at Dodge City Paintball. There’s even low-impact options for kids as young as 6*

• Take in some tunes at an outdoor concert

• Scale the climbing wall at Pelican Bay Aquatic Center

• Catch a show at Winchester Drive-In

• Play a round of mini-golf

• Get soaked under the tipping bucket at Frontier City’s Wild West Water Works

• Try a new piece of produce from a local farmers market

8 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019


• Take advantage of the low-cost option to try martial arts this summer at Dragon Kim’s Taekwondo* • Enjoy dinner al fresco at a local restaurant patio • Shop for a new book and play with the train table at Full Circle Bookstore • Pitch a tent in the backyard for an at-home camp-out • Walk around Lake Hefner and stop for a selfie in front of the lighthouse • Challenge each other at a local board game cafe • Make your own banana split bar • Break out the glow sticks for a twilight family walk • Have some retro bowling fun at Dust Bowl Lanes & Lounge, made especially affordable on Mondays when it’s half-price bowling and shoes all day* • Go back in time at Edmond’s 1889 Territorial Schoolhouse • Grab the sidewalk chalk and make a miniature version of Oklahoma City in your driveway • Challenge the kids to jump off a high dive • Get wet and learn swim skills at Aqua Tots Swim School, offering classes for ages 4 months to 12 years* • Touch historic locomotives at the Oklahoma Railway Museum • Visit Pops Arcadia and take a photo in front of the giant LED pop bottle • Take a ride on the Wheeler Ferris Wheel • Find a new neighborhood festival to explore together • Find your favorite food truck for an outdoor lunch

• Set up a play date at a nearby park • Weather the “thunderstorm” at Myriad Gardens’ Thunder Fountain • Make a craft together at Second Saturday Drop-in Studio every second Saturday at Oklahoma Contemporary • Challenge a friend to a race • Take a whirl around the rink at Skate Galaxy OKC and take advantage of their summer hours and Family Skate Nights* • Catch an outdoor movie • Treat your kids or have them treat you to breakfast in bed • Explore fun themes and enjoy hands-on fun at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum’s Saturdays for Kids, held for FREE the first Saturday of every month* • Have a watermelon seed-spitting contest • Enjoy free admission to the 45th Infantry Museum • Take a twilight cruise on the Oklahoma River • Meet some farm animals at a tour of the Braum’s Family Farm in Tuttle • Take a road trip to see the Selman Bat Watch • Go to an OKC Dodgers game • Spend a few hours of hands-on FREE fun at Oklahoma Hall of Fame/Gaylord Pickens Museum during their weekly Summer Thursday events from Memorial Day to Labor Day* • Download a kid-friendly podcast to listen to together • Set up a lemonade stand for a good cause • Run a 5K together

• Go geocaching

• Stretch your creativity at Unpluggits Paint & Play with their clay workshops and Paint and Play program*

• Spot a new-to-you plant species at Martin Park Nature Center

• Take a road trip to one of the beaches at an Oklahoma lake

• Perk everyone up with a trip to Main Event Oklahoma City to enjoy bowling, arcade games, ropes courses and more*

• Have a popsicle party in the driveway with your neighbors

• Take some lawn chairs outside of town for an evening of stargazing • Explore new terrain at an Oklahoma State Park • Ride the lazy river around the new Westwood Family Aquatic Center in Norman • Learn about how animals move by studying their skeletal systems at SKELETONS: Museum of Osteology* • Challenge your kids to draw a self-portrait

• Plant pumpkins in the backyard to harvest in the fall • Learn fun history at “Okietales, A Storytelling & Craft Time” held for ages five to nine at the Oklahoma History Center each Wednesday in June and July, except July 3* • Enjoy free admission at the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art • Go out for donuts • Start a windowsill or backyard garden

• Send an Oklahoma City postcard to an out-of-town friend or family member

• Enroll your child in the fun summer camps of Studio J School of Dance with themes that include Fancy Nancy, Lego Ninja and more*

• Bake a special summer treat for a neighbor or friend

• Challenge your kids to read a new library book every week

• Start a summer journal and jot down highlights of the season

• Have a pillow fight

• Go on a family picnic

• Play in the sand at Bricktown Beach

• Challenge the kids to a water gun fight

NOTE: * indicates sponsored activities from our advertising partners. Find coupons and offers from many of these on the next page!

• Practice new gymnastic skills and have active fun at Mondays@Metro, a drop-in summer day camp for ages 4 and up at Metro Gymnastics*

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

9


Exclusive deals for

100 Days of fun! Save big this summer using these offers, courtesy of our advertising partners. Be sure to check out these coupons and more, updated often and available all summer at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/coupons.

Main Event Oklahoma City FREE $20 in arcade play with the purchase of $20 in arcade play. Only good for Oklahoma City location. One coupon per person per day. Expires June 25, 2019. One time use only. Not to be combined with other offers. No cash value.

Aqua Tots Swim School Enroll by deadline and registration fee will be waived. (Value of $35 per child or $45 per family.) Expires May 31, 2019. One time use only. Not to be combined with other offers. No cash value.

Oklahoma History Center One free child admission with one paid adult admission. Expires Aug. 31, 2019. One time use only. Not to be combined with other offers. No cash value.

Cottonwood Creek Ranch Receive over 25% discount on Summer Riding Camps. Regular price is $325/ week; discount price is $240/week. Good for 2019 summer camps only. Register at cottonwoodcreekranch.com/horse-camp. Must be 6 yrs. and older to participate in all-day camp. Expires with last 2019 summer camp session. One time use only. Not to be combined with other offers. No cash value.

Oklahoma City Museum of Art Get the best deal for viewing the blockbuster summer exhibition at OKCMOA: “Van Gogh, Monet, Degas: The Mellon Collection of French Art” from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. Tickets are $15 each OR free for members (memberships start at $50). Become a member today to reserve your FREE exhibition tickets and when you’re signing up online for membership, use offer code KIDSFEST to receive a free 13th month of membership!

Dodge City Paintball $5 off regular admission price. One coupon per player needed. Expires Aug. 31, 2019. One time use only. Not to be combined with other offers. No cash value.

Okie Kids Playground Purchase one admission, get one half off. Expires May 31, 2019. One time use only. Not to be combined with other offers. No cash value.

Dragon Kim’s Taekwondo New students pay just $100 for the first month of classes, receive a free uniform and pay no activation fee. Good May 23-Aug. 1, 2019. One time use only. Not to be combined with other offers. No cash value.

Skate Galaxy OKC Buy one get one half price on individual admission for weekday summer skate and family night skate times only. Expires July 31, 2019. One time use only. Not to be combined with other offers. No cash value.

Dust Bowl Lanes & Lounge Receive 10% off of a birthday party. Expires Aug. 31, 2019. One time use only. Not to be combined with other offers. No cash value.

SKELETONS: Museum of Osteology $2 OFF admission for each person in your party. Offer must be redeemed in store. Expires Sept. 1, 2019. Not to be combined with other offers. No cash value.

Goldfish Swim School Purchase two Jump Start Clinics, get one free. Expires May 31, 2019. One time use only. Not to be combined with other offers. No cash value.

Studio J School of Dance $15 off Summer Camp 2019. Expires at end of summer camp 2019 season. One time use only. Not to be combined with other offers. No cash value.

10 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019


OUTDOOR ADVENTURE SERIES EDMOND PARKS & RECREATION FISHING 101 FISHING10101 JUNE 5 OR 26 | JULY OR 31 MARCH 12 + 5:30 APRIL -117PM 5:30 - 7:00 PM$10

BASIC KAYAKING BASIC3 ORKAYAKING JUNE 17 | JULY 15 | AUG. 5 5:30 APRIL- 7PM 2 + APRIL 30 $45:30 - 7:00 PM

$10

$4 OFF-ROAD MOUNTAIN BIKING JUNE 12 OR JULY 17 OFF-ROAD 4:30 - 6PM MOUNTAIN BIKING MARCH 26 + APRIL 25 FREE

FIRE BUILDING JUNE 7 OR 28 | JULY 12 OR 26 FIRE BUILDING & CAMPFIRE 5:30 COOKING - 7PM MARCH 28 + APRIL 23FREE

5:30 - 7:00 PM FREE

5:30 - 7:00 PM FREE

FLY FISHING 101 JUNE 8, JULY 13 OR AUGUST 3 9A.M. - 4PM $100 FAMILY CAMP OUT! ARCADIA LAKE

3D ARCHERY SHOOTING J U N E 1 2 | J U LY 1 0 O R 3 1 5:30 - 7PM 3D ARCHERY SHOOTING $ 4

APRIL 12 - APRIL 14 9:00 A.M. - 5:00 PM $60/FAMILY OF 4

MARCH 5 + APRIL 4 9:00 - 5:30 PM $4

REGISTER AT EDMONDPARKS.COM OR CALL 405.359.4630

OUTDOOR ADVENTURE DAYS


Star Spangled Salute BY LINDSAY CUOMO

The US Navy’s Blue Angels are returning to the Sooner state as the headlining performers of the 2019 Star Spangled Salute Air & Space Show. As the largest air show in the state of Oklahoma, attendees will also get to see many other fan favorites at this year’s event scheduled for June 1 & 2 at Tinker Air Force Base. Stand out acts included an S-16 tactical demonstration, the USAF Wings of Blue Parachute Team, a fast-flying micro jet aerial act, the Jelly Belly aerial comedy act and more. There will also be a number of static displays and a K9 team demonstration. Over more than a decade, the air show has given thousands of visitors an opportunity to learn about Oklahoma’s aerospace industry, which is one of Oklahoma’s top economic engines. With such a large impact across the state, there is a real need for more young people to consider aviation as potential career path and the air show plays a very important role in this special mission. “This is our chance to thank the community and provide an opportunity for people to come on base to learn about what goes on, to kind of pull back the curtains if you will,” Chris Moler, the air show’s director of community partnerships, said.

12 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

“We want to encourage kids to get involved in the field of aerospace, whether in the private or public sector. The air show just might be what jumpstarts someone’s career.” In addition to an exciting lineup of performers, kids and their families can explore a variety of hands-on STEM experiences showcasing robotics, drone technology and more, including a virtual reality experience that lets attendees get an up-close look at what it is like to fly with the Blue Angels. And, just for fun, kids are sure to stay entertained in the Kidz Zone play area at the north end of the tarmac with games, inflatables and a rock wall. Admission, parking and rides on the shuttle buses are all free. Attendees are encouraged to park at Building 9001, formerly the old General Motors Plant, off SE 74th Street. Shuttle buses will run continuously throughout both days. Most of the attractions are free to enjoy with the exception of a VIP area and the Kidz Zone. VIP tickets start at $12 and a wristband for the Kidz Zone costs $15. Important tips to help you enjoy your day at the air show: • A good rule to remember—if you can’t take it on a plane, you can’t bring it on the base. Visitors will have to go through a security checkpoint before boarding the shuttle buses or entering the event area.

US NAVY’S BLUE ANGELS

• Coolers are not permitted. Vendors will have beverages for sale and water will be available free of charge. Small diaper bags and purses are permitted. • Hearing protection is important for everyone but especially for infants and children. • Bring sunscreen and/or a hat because shade is limited. • Blankets, lawn chairs and strollers are permitted. • Tinker Federal Credit Union will have no-charge ATMs on-site. • Some parking is available on base and can be accessed via the Lancer & Hruskocy gates.


WIC Can Help

BALANCE

Your Family’s Nutrition And Help Your MONEY Go Further WIC or Women Infants & Children is a USDA Food and Nutrition Service federally funded supplemental feeding program administered by WCD Enterprises, Inc.

CLASSICAL BALLET SCHOOL

Wonders of the Jungle Eyes will sparkle, imaginations roar as we journey through a magical ballet jungle!

JULY 8-11

ELIGIBILITY

• Pregnant women • Women with a baby mostly breastfeeding up to 1 year old • Women with a baby up to 6 months old • Infants • Children up to 5 years old

Why not call to see if your family qualifies?

an imaginative and challenging introduction to the Cecchetti classical ballet method Ages 4-7

Space is limited - Register TODAY! CLASSICALBALLETSCHOOLOKC.COM

405.755.5540

$135

1-800-492-3942

Visit www.wcdwic.org for more information. USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Need to pick up after 6 p.m.? We can help! • Caring for infants through 12 years • After-school and summer programs for school age kids • 3-star nationally accredited program • Open 24 hours and Saturday • Accept military, tribal, DHS & drop-in care

3601 NW 51st OKC

405.946.3223

309 Bizzell MWC

405.737.8790

3034 NW 17th OKC

405.947.7722

www.childcareinc.com

3 OKC Locations 540 N Council Rd. -

405.789.0661

5816 NW 36th St.-

405.947.4002

6624 NW 63rd St. -

405.721.1830

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

13


Awesome Moms BY ERIN PAGE. PHOTOS BY KIMERA GONZALEZ.

Each year in January we start our Awesome Moms contest and each year, the nominations are more than inspirational. There were over 70 amazing nominations of mothers whom we didn’t previously know but are glad we got to know and honor. Congratulations to the winner and two finalists, Jennifer Smith, Audrey Longson and Druana

JENNIFER SMITH

DR. AUDREY LONGSON

Sanders-Forcha. And our sincere appreciation to the sponsors who made this project possible: Renaissance Hotel, The Spa at 10 North, Erin Meier Aesthetics and James Avery Artisan Jewelry. You’ll also find more nominee stories to inspire you this Mother’s Day month at www. metrofamilymagazine.com/mom-inspiration.

DRUANA SANDERS-FORCHA

Winner

Jennifer Smith Jennifer Smith’s greatest wish for her children is to enjoy a very different childhood from the one she experienced. Husband David, who nominated Smith, calls his wife’s strength and resilience “undeniable,” permeating her roles as mom and wife, and in her career and community life. Our 2019 Awesome Mom winner is an Air Force Reserve Veteran, accomplished human resources manager, a two-time winner of the Military Spouse of the Year for the 507th Air Refueling Wing at Tinker Air Force Base and an avid volunteer, though these accomplishments pale in comparison to being wife to David, stepmom to 9-year-old Braelee and mom to 2-year-old Emmarie. JENNIFER SMITH WITH HUSBAND DAVID AND DAUGHTER EMMARIE.

14 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019


As a mom, she prioritizes being both nurturing and adaptable, raising kids who are consistently assured they are loved and valued. Smith quips that her toddler has illuminated she and David’s true potential for flexibility and patience, squelching the notion of a “one-size-fits-all” parenting mentality. Though Smith says blending families can be challenging, she has found far more beauty in the process, particularly the joy of watching Braelee embrace her role as big sister to Emmarie. She’s grateful to have a great relationship with her stepdaughter. “As a stepmom, it’s important to remember boundaries, try not to take things personally and put yourself in the biological mom’s shoes,” said Smith. Though Smith was separated from her mom at a young age, growing up with her brother in various foster homes, she has a clear vision of how she wants to raise her kids. “My only goal is to raise loved, respectful and kind human beings,” said Smith. “And I want them to remember all the fun memories we shared.”

“That’s really the most important thing, making sure they know they are loved,” said Smith.

Never adopted, Smith aged out of the foster care system at age 18. She grew up primarily in Guthrie with a strong support system from community members, who she says kept her focused on forging a bright future rather than becoming a statistic. “Half of the kids who age out of the [foster care] system aren’t employed by age 24,” said Smith. “But those challenges encouraged and motivated me to be the best parent, mom and civilian I could be.” A year after graduating high school, Smith joined the Air Force Reserve, providing structure, discipline and a growing confidence as she made a difference in others’ lives. During a deployment to Kyrgyzstan, Smith recalls hanging out with local high school students while volunteering at the embassy. “While getting to talk to these kids in a pretty poor country, it was neat to realize they are so much like we are; they just want

to learn and have fun,” said Smith. Smith met husband David in the Reserve, they were married four years ago and she completed her enlistment when the couple found out they were pregnant with Emmarie. Smith was asked to become the Key Spouse for the 507th Security Forces Squadron at Tinker Air Force Base, which entails connecting military spouses with information and resources, planning family events several times a year and collecting funds and donations to send holiday gifts to troops overseas. As a veteran, she provides unique perspective and insight to both spouses and the unit.

for life that are contagious. Her discipline and strength of character are rounded out by a gentleness and flexibility in caring for her life’s greatest blessings. When overwhelmed by schedules, stress or a child’s tantrum, she repeats a mantra her friend imparted about the key to parenting: “Just love them.” “That’s really the most important thing, making sure they know they are loved,” said Smith.

“I get asked if it’s harder to be deployed or to be the family member of the deployed,” said Smith. “Being at home with the kids alone and making sure bills are paid is difficult, but being the deployed member is not easy either because you can’t be at home to help and you have a job to do overseas.” David has been deployed three times, most recently when Emmarie was just 4 months old. Being a first-time mom and without much family to rely on for help, the 7-month deployment was a challenge, but Smith says people don’t often realize that reintegration can be just as difficult as the deployed and his or her family find a new normal. In addition to her roles as wife, mom, volunteer and veteran, Smith is accomplished in the human resources profession, working full time, completing her master’s degree just last spring and serving on the board of the Oklahoma City Human Resources Society. “Meeting so many knowledgeable HR professionals inspired and motivated me to want to know more,” said Smith. “I don’t have any family members with a master’s degree, so it was also for me to know I could accomplish it.” Smith’s paper planner is key to her sanity, and she’s found it’s just as crucial to schedule family fun, time with a friend or date night with David as it is to detail her work, volunteer or school responsibilities. Smith’s in-laws have been a phenomenal support system, particularly when David was deployed, and she has learned to say yes when they offer help. “For moms it can be difficult to leave your babies and spend time by yourself or with a friend, but it’s so important,” said Smith. David says his wife’s most treasured pastime is making memories with her kids, clear in both her planner’s pages with scheduled trips to family favorites like the Myriad Gardens and Science Museum Oklahoma, and in her everyday life. Smith exudes a joy and zest

DR. AUDREY LONGSON AND FAMILY - HUSBAND ADAM, SON HARRISON AND DAUGHTER OLIVETTE.

Finalist

Audrey Longson Audrey Longson approaches issues both large and small with the intent of making the world a better place for her children. Mom to Harrison, 4, and Olivette, 2, husband Adam, who nominated her, calls Longson a “modern day Wonder Woman.” A psychiatrist and political advocate, Longson is passionate about improving the healthcare system, encouraging transparency in the medical field and advocating for patients’ rights to be treated by medical doctors versus nonphysician providers. “We rank among the worst in all civilized nations in terms of outcomes, general safety, accessibility and cost,” said Longson. “Corporations, hospitals, prisons or clinics get to pocket more money [when employing non-physician providers]. The patient and

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

15


the insurance company are paying for a Mercedes and getting a Kia.” To become a physician, Longson spent nearly 15 years in training. In her work in prison she watched care decline as non-providers without comparable training replaced physicians. She believes patients have a right to know upfront whether their providers received years of training like she did, or took a year-long online course to achieve a PhD. A recent Oklahoma House bill would allow psychologists to legally call themselves physicians and prescribe medication, though they have no medical training. “You can’t become a medical doctor through legislation, only through education,” said Longson. “Corporate medicine is pushing people like psychologists and nurses to take quick online courses and put prescription pads in their hands. These patients, suffering from depression, addiction, people who are suicidal, are vulnerable and need strong advocates.” Longson regularly meets with Oklahoma lawmakers to advocate for change, and she recently served as a conduit between several national online physician forums to encourage the creation of a database to connect unmatched medical students seeking residency programs with physicians around the country willing to train them. “There aren’t enough hours in the day, but I have seen that effort pays off,” said Longson. “I’m starting to feel some hope. There is talk about creating more residency positions and Oklahoma is offering incentives to physicians who are able to go out to rural areas.”

“I’m surprised over and over what kids can comprehend, remember and apply to the future.”

Longson’s creativity and determination in her advocacy work is mirrored in her parenting. Rather than abandon pastimes they loved pre-children, the Longsons have embraced including their children on their adventures, whether through enjoying exotic foods, traveling, cooking or watching plays. “If there is something you are passionate about and it’s not something kids are traditionally engaged in, that doesn’t

16 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

mean your kids can’t,” said Longson, who laughingly calls a flight to Australia with a 2-year.old “as bad as you would imagine,” though the decision to tag along on David’s business trip is one they’ve never regretted. Son Harrison loves Ethiopian food and making sushi with Longson at home and is likely to include Spaghetti-Os along with salmon. Longson has learned to give her kids straightforward answers to their questions, whether about a dog passing away or how the knee joint works.

challenges of parenting, political activism or preserving the earth might seem daunting for some, for Longson, there is great joy in empowering her kids to be world changers. “I want them to know everything they do matters, even the little things,” said Longson. “It’s energizing when you see in real time evidence that taking a few small steps can make a huge difference.”

“I’m surprised over and over what kids can comprehend, remember and apply to the future,” said Longson. “I don’t think it’s for adults to determine what children are or are not capable of understanding.” Recent Oklahoma transplants, Longson calls Oklahoma City “the coolest place the rest of the country has never thought about visiting,” impressed with the variety of museums, festivals and art available to her family. A botanic garden buff, the Myriad Gardens ranks at the top of Longson’s list, and the family loves catching plays at the Lyric Theatre, the Civic Center or Shakespeare in the Park and visiting Science Museum Oklahoma, the OKC Zoo and Factory Obscura. As Longson maneuvers parenting in a social media-driven world, she’s highly aware of the negative impact both it and reality TV can have on mental health, thanks to her own research and work with her patients. She believes in leading by example, monitoring her own social media usage and being present with her kids rather than watching life from behind a lens or measuring worth in likes. Key to her own mental health is getting together with other moms in person, often to discuss books, which the voracious reader listens to while doing dishes or folding laundry. The movie buff also keeps up with the latest films by watching 10 to 15 minutes at a time. Longson leads by example when it comes to caring for the world around her, too, able to recycle or repurpose just about anything, from furniture on the side of the road to items they no longer need in their household. “Much to my husband’s chagrin, my kids know you don’t throw something out just because it doesn’t work for you anymore,” said Longson, who laughs that she was in the Earth Club before it was the cool thing to do. From filling recycling bins to bags of clothes, toys or food donations for those in need, Longson loves watching her children think through new uses for old things. While the

DRUANA SANDERS-FORCHA, DAUGHTER DALYNN, SON DENIS AND HUSBAND ERIC

Finalist Druana

Sanders-Forcha

Druana Sanders-Forcha epitomizes grit and determination. In addition to mothering two adult sons, a son finishing high school and 2-year-old daughter and being wife to Eric, Sanders-Forcha is esteemed in her engineering career and passionate about providing nourishing meals to underserved children and families. As a young, single mom of three boys, Sanders-Forcha vividly remembers spending evenings at the library, all four doing homework together as she held both a fulltime job at an engineering company and attended college full time. When not at the library, her mom would keep the boys so Sanders-Forcha could study or attend class.


Though Sanders-Forcha dropped out after her first attempt at college after high school, saying neither she nor her mom realized the grants and resources available to her, memories of high school drafting classes and awe of the projects in her workplace inspired her to pursue her bachelor’s degree in electronic engineering. “I wanted to be a provider for my kids because for a long time, it was just us,” said Sanders-Forcha. “I couldn’t afford not to work full-time, but I also felt like I owed it to my kids.” In her family, she calls her pursuit of education the exception rather than the norm, and she wanted something different for her boys. By removing barriers she hoped to show them they could one day pursue college, too. A degree also paved the way to purchase a new home in Spencer, where she still lives, after her oldest boys were hit by a car in their old neighborhood, requiring middle son Darrick to be medevaced to Children’s Hospital. Soon after Sanders-Forcha earned her bachelor’s degree, her college adviser encouraged her to attain her master’s in performance improvement, which helped her earn her current position as senior lead engineer at Booz Allen Hamilton. She finds great fulfillment in helping clients bring products to fruition. That same work ethic and positive spirit aided friend Lisa Blacknoll, who nominated Sanders-Forcha, in launching non-profit organization Filling Tummies in 2017. Focused on providing fresh, nutritious foods to children in local food deserts, the team takes a bus once or twice a month to local schools, as funds and requests align. The Filling Tummies bus creates a party atmosphere in school parking lots, cranking up music and welcoming 100 percent of students to grab a bag and shop. No questions are asked about need, income or family size because Sanders-Forcha remembers how dehumanizing that feels. “When I was a child and my Mom needed help every once in a while, we’d go to the food pantry and you’d sit there half the day answering questions about your house size, income and religion,” said Sanders-Forcha. “You’d sell your soul for a bag of groceries,

and it may not even be things you wanted and needed.” Filling Tummies doesn’t give away food the volunteers wouldn’t want themselves, and while they stock kid-friendly snacks, they also educate kids on the variety of fresh fruit and vegetables available. Many have never seen a mango, cucumber or cherry tomatoes. Volunteers encourage kids to think beyond themselves and select choices family members will like, too. “When you’re on a fixed income, you economize and get things you can afford, which is usually not fresh stuff,” said Sanders-Forcha. “But now they get to know what a real orange or pear tastes like, without preservatives.” Sanders-Forcha loves watching kids feel empowered by making their own food choices and contributing to their families. The team gave away more than 10,000 pounds of food over Spring Break, and Sanders-Forcha dreams of doing more for underserved families. The hardworking mom also believes in the power of play and laughter. Sanders-Forcha finds immense joy in watching her kids play sports. She takes time for herself by playing in a women’s basketball league and making handbags and purses for her side venture. She loves to travel, whether with Blacknoll and families renting out a cabin each year, visiting her siblings and extended family in Las Vegas, or exploring new destinations with husband Eric, most recently Canada and Africa. Though Sanders-Forcha feels great pride in her boys’ pursuit of higher education, Darian a college graduate, Darrick in college and Denis attending this fall, her nurturing heart has had a hard time letting them go. After earning scholarships to a Connecticut high school, eldest Darian son left home even earlier than anticipated. “I wasn’t prepared and thought I had a few years left to mother him,” said SandersForcha. “But when I realized what a great opportunity it was and that he had earned it, I had to let him go.”

OPENS JUNE 22

While Sanders-Forcha is grateful to have Dalynn at home to ease the transition, watching her boys find their own passions has fulfilled her biggest dreams.

Congratulations to our 2019 Awesome Mom winner and finalists. Our sincere appreciation to the generous sponsors:

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

17

Vincent van Gogh (Dutch, 1853–1890). Daisies, Arles, (detail), 1888. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond. Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mellon. Photo: Travis Fullerton. © Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Exhibition organized by the Viriginia Museum of Fine Arts.


ARCADIA LAKE’S

COMING SOON! NEW YUKON LOCATION.

Call (405) 840-1686 NOW to schedule an evaluation!

KIDS FISHING DERBY SAT. JUNE 8, 2019 7:30 A.M.– NOON SPRING CREEK PARK KIDS AGES 5–15 FREE EVENT

Our therapists provide fun, inventive and playful interventions that address your child's specific needs.

We offer physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech language therapy.

Play • Learn • Thrive

www.SensationalKidsOKC.com

14715 Bristol Park Blvd., Edmond • 5701 SE 74th St., OKC

Registration from 7:30–9 a.m., fishing at 8 a.m. and final weigh-in at 11 a.m. Concessions and worms will be for sale at the event site. Parents must accompany children.

216-7471

Introducing Oklahoma City’s NEW premier indoor sports facility!

League Play

Summer Session 1: May 25-July 20, 8 games for youth and adult teams. Registration ends May 19.

Summer Open Play Pass

Ages 5 to 16 can enjoy activities such as soccer, futsal, dodgeball, volleyball, obstacle course, board games and more. Mon., Wed., & Fri., 1-4pm, starting May 27. Registration fee is $15/child with multiple packages available.

Summer Field Trips

Designed for day cares and other groups to play sports and have fun in this state-of-the-art facility. Several dates available between May 27 & Aug. 16.

Birthday Parties

Enjoy time on the field and/or court plus 45 minutes in a party room for a one-of-a-kind birthday at ScoreOKC. Multiple packages available. Register today! 405-920-2121 or lsteverson@scoreokc.com

Discover all this and more at the NEW ScoreOKC! 18509 N MERIDIAN AVE • EDMOND • 405-920-2121 • www.scoreokc.com

18 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019


t s o M ttable e g r o f Un ummer S ver. E

Escape with Peter and Wendy for an itinerary full of Peter Pan themed events and activities. And splash into summer at Paradise Springs, our 10-acre outdoor waterpark.

Overnight packages on sale at GaylordTexan.com/SummerFest PRESENTED BY

AQUAFINA is a registered trademark of PepsiCo, Inc.


May EVENTS CALENDAR

TOP 5 EVENTS May 4

Festival of the Child at Yukon City Park

May 25 & 26

Chuck Wagon Festival at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum

May 25 - 27

Paseo Arts Festival in Oklahoma City

CALENDAR SPONSORED BY

June 1

Edmond Electric Touch-a-Truck at UCO

June 1 & 2

FREE Star Spangled Salute Air Show at Tinker Air Force Base CRESTONERIDGE.COM


May 3 - 5

Norman Native American Frontier Days in Norman (various locations) features a parade, trail rides, Native flute demonstrations, pow wow, rodeo and car show. Most events are free to attend. See website for schedule. www.facebook.com/NNAFD2019

FREE Arts Festival in Downtown Edmond (30 W 1st St, Edmond) features more than 100 artist booths, food vendors, live music, painting demonstrations, children’s area and more. Friday & Saturday 10am-8pm; Sunday, 11am-5pm. 249-9391, downtownedmondok.com USRowing Central Youth Championships on the Oklahoma River (800 Riversport Dr) features two days of spirited racing from top junior crews in the region. See website for race times. 552-4040, www.riversportokc.org/events Rose Rock Music Festival in Downtown Noble (304 S Main St, Noble) features a carnival, live music, a parade, car show and more. Free to attend. Friday, 6pm; Saturday, 10am, Sunday, 10:30am. nobleok.org/rose-rock-music-festival/ Oklahoma State Softball vs University of Oklahoma at Cowgirl Stadium (598 N Duck St, Stillwater). Prices vary. Friday, 6pm; Sunday, 3pm. 877-All-4-OSU, www.okstate.com University of Oklahoma Baseball vs Texas Tech University at Dale Mitchell Park (401 Imhoff Rd, Norman). Prices vary. Friday, 6:30pm; Saturday, 2pm; Sunday, 1pm. Also held: 5/10-12 vs Oklahoma State. 325-2424, www.soonersports.com

May 4

Autism Oklahoma PieceWalk & 5K at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark (2 S Mickey Mantle Dr) features a 5K, PieceWalk and a resource fair. $35 & up, PieceWalk, free. 7:3010:45am. www.piecewalk.org FREE V-Dubs on Auto Alley (NW 8th St between Robinson & Oklahoma Ave) features a family and pet friendly street festival with a car show, DJ, art exhibits,

pop-up vendor park and more. 8am3pm. 370-1830, www.vwclubokc.org FREE Annual Edmond Family Bike Ride at Mitch Park (1501 W Covell Rd, Edmond) features a safety talk and family bike ride around the park. 8:30am. 359-4796, www. edmondok.com/955/Bicycle-Edmond Safe Kid’s Day at the Oklahoma City Zoo (2101 NE 50th St). Kids will learn how to stay safe on the road, at home and at play with a full day of family activities including a Safety Scavenger Safari for kids. 9am2pm. 424-3344, www.okczoo.org Prague Kolache Festival in Downtown Prague (1107 N Broadway Ave, Prague) features dancing, music, food, crafts, a parade, carnival rides, royalty and more. 9am-10pm. 567-4866, www.praguekolachefestival.com May Day Celebration at Hunter’s Home Historic Site (19479 E Murrell Home Rd, Park Hill near Tahlequah in NE Oklahoma) features social activities, dance lessons, entertainment, agricultural demonstrations, food and more. Adults, $7; students, $4; kids (5 & under), free. 10am-4pm. 918-456-2751, www.okhistory.org Festival of the Child at Yukon City Park (2200 S Holly Ave, Yukon) features over 50 areas of fun activities including crafts, kayaking, archery, inflatables, pony rides and more. All activities are geared for children 12 and under. Kids, $5 in advance, $7 day of; adults, free. 10am-4pm. www.cityofyukonok.gov Muscle Walk at Joe B. Barnes Regional Park (8700 E Reno Ave, Midwest City) features a family-friendly walk, food, games, raffles and vendors. Benefits MDA OKC. 10am-1pm. 722-8001, www.facebook.com/mda.okc/ FREE Warr Acres-Putnam City Route 66 Celebration (NW 29th & Ann Arbor) features a veterans salute, health fair, live musical performances, food trucks, slides and bounce houses for kids, car show, touch a truck and more. 10am-3pm. www.facebook.com/WarrAcresCityHall/

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

21

Oklahoma Animals May 4 • 10:00 a.m. – Noon

Meet Oklahoma animals at 10:15 a.m. during a presentation by the Oklahoma City Zoo.

Cowboy Life

June 1 • 10:00 a.m. – Noon Discover how cowboys were entertained and took care of their daily lives.

nationalcowboymuseum.org/kids 1700 Northeast 63rd Street Oklahoma City, OK 73111 Mon – Sat, 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Sun, Noon – 5:00 p.m. (405) 478-2250 Program support provided by the Robert Glenn Rapp Foundation


FACT:

It takes four weeks to go from egg, larva, pupa to adult.

CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

FREE Saturday for Kids at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) features a variety of themed, hands-on activities for kids to explore the history of the American West. Meet Oklahoma animals at a special 45-minute presentation by the Oklahoma City Zoo. Then make a fun animal craft and explore the museum to see what animals you can find represented. 10am-noon. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org Norman Mother & Son Spring Dance at Embassy Suites (2501 Conference Dr, Norman) features a fun-filled evening for boys ages 4-14 and the special ladies in their lives. A ticket is required for each person attending the dance. $15. 4:30 & 7pm. cityofnorman.thundertix.com FREE Red Brick Nights Street Festival in Downtown Guthrie (2nd & Harrison Ave, Guthrie) features pop-up shops, food trucks and live music. 6-9pm. 282-1947, www.facebook.com/RedBrickNights/ May the 4th Be with You Activities at Mustang Town Center (1201 W Mustang Rd, Mustang) features games, crafts, refreshments, meet & greet with popular characters, Jedi training and more. $5; parents, free. 6:30-8:30pm. 376-3411, www.cityofmustang.org

BALANCED LEARNING® WAY:

And in one magic moment, a scientist is born. SEE BALANCED LEARNING IN ACTION. CALL FOR A TOUR TODAY!

Infants – Private Kindergarten & After School

Primrose School of Edmond 15000 N. Western Ave. Edmond, OK 73013 405.285.6787 PrimroseEdmond.com Each Primrose school is a privately owned and operated franchise. Primrose Schools® and Balanced Learning® are registered trademarks of Primrose School Franchising Company. ©2017 Primrose School Franchising Company. All rights reserved. See primroseschools.com for ‘fact’ source and curriculum detail.

Oklahoma City Energy vs Tacoma Defiance at Taft Stadium (2501 N May Ave). $11 & up. 7:30pm. Also held: 5/18 vs Real Monarchs SLC, 5/25 vs Colorado Spring, 6/1 vs LA Galaxy II. 235-5425, www.energyfc.com University of Oklahoma Softball vs Oklahoma State University at Marita Hynes Field (2500 S Jenkins Ave, Norman). Price vary. 7:30pm. 325-2424, www.soonersports.com Warrior Weekend 5K Fun Run at Wildhorse Park (1201 N Mustang Rd, Mustang) features a family-friendly 5K and a fun run. A portion of the proceeds from this event will benefit Warriors for Freedom. $15-25. 6:30-8pm. 376-3411, www.mustangparksfoundation.com Whose Live Anyway? at the OCCC Visual and Performing Arts Center Theater (7777 S May Ave) features 90 minutes of hilarious improvised comedy and song all based on audience suggestions. All ages welcome. $35 & up. 8pm. tickets.occc.edu

22 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

May 4 & 5

Oklahoma Orchid Society Show & Sale at Will Rogers Park (3400 NW 36th St) features vendors and exhibitors with hundreds of orchids on display and for sale. Free to attend. Saturday, 10am-4pm; Sunday, 10am3pm. 209-7657, www.oosorchids.org FREE Outdoor Expo at Camp McFadden (9137 E Hartford, Ponca City) features a wide variety of outdoor activities like fishing, kayaking, archery, volleyball, hiking and more. Saturday, 9am-5pm; Sunday, 11am-5pm. 580762-9955, www.campmcfadden.com

May 6 & 7

Teddy Roosevelt Living History Performance at National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) features a first person presentation to hear about how Roosevelt’s time in the West changed his life from a city slicker to an adventurous cowboy and conservationist. Prices vary. Monday, 5:30-8:30pm; Tuesday, 10:30am. 4782250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org

May 7 - 10

Oklahoma City Dodgers vs Nashville Sounds at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark (2 S Mickey Mantle Dr). $8. Tuesday-Friday, 7:05pm; Thursday, 11:05am. Also held: 5/16-20 vs Omaha. 218-1000, www.okcdodgers.com

May 9 - 12

Rooster Days Festival at Central Park (1500 S Main St, Broken Arrow) features a carnival, parade, live entertainment, festival food and more. Free to attend, activity prices vary. Thursday, 5-10pm; Friday, 5-11pm & Saturday, 10am-11pm; Sunday, noon-6pm. 918251-1518, www.roosterdays.com

May 10

FREE 2nd Friday Norman Art Walk in Downtown Norman (Main St, Norman) features a celebration of arts and creativity. Enjoy a variety of featured artists and art activities as well as live music and specials at local restaurants and businesses in the district. 6-9pm. www.2ndfridaynorman.com FREE LIVE on the Plaza in the Plaza District (1700 block of NW 16th St) features artists, live music, special events, local shopping and more. 6-10pm. www.plazadistrict.org/live/


FREE Movie Night in the Park at Mitch Park (2733 Marilyn Williams Dr, Edmond) features a screening of Christopher Robin. Concessions available for purchase. Movie begins at dark. 359-4630, www.edmondparks.com

May 10 & 11

Made in Oklahoma Fest at the Reed Conference Center (5750 Will Rogers Rd, Midwest City) features live music, a car show, food and drink vendors as well as unique shopping with local merchandise. Free to attend. Friday, 5-9pm; Saturday, 10am-9pm. 517-5106, www.madeinoklahomafest.com

Big 12 Conference Softball Championship at the National Softball Hall of Fame and Museum (2801 NE 50th St). The top six teams in the conference will compete in pool play for the title. Adults, $25; students, $15; kids (2 & under), free. See website for schedule. 425-3422, www.big12sports.com A Whale of a Sale at Junior League

of Oklahoma City (1001 NW Grand Blvd) features an upscale rummage sale with gently-used furniture, books, shoes, linens, artwork, antiques, holiday décor, jewelry, handbags and more. Benefits the Junior League of Oklahoma City. Free to attend. 7am-4pm. 8435668, www.jloc.org/whale-of-a-sale/ Italian Festival at the McAlester Expo Center (4500 W Hwy 270, McAlester) features Italian food, live entertainment and shopping as well as activities for kids including pony rides, Italian games and inflatables. Free to attend. Friday, 4-7pm; Saturday, 10am-7pm. 918-421-9403, www.themcalesteritalianfestival.org

May 10 - 12

Arts for All Festival at Shepler Park (W. Gore Blvd & 5th St, Lawton) features artists, live entertainment, a youth art competition, children’s art area and multicultural food vendors. Free to attend. Friday, 4-8pm; Saturday, 11am-8pm & Sunday, 11am-5pm. 580248-5384, www.lawtonafa.org

May 11

Strawberry Festival in Downtown Stilwell (Olive & Oak St, Stilwell) features live entertainment, free strawberries and ice cream, a 5K run, carnival, parade and more. Free to attend. 7am5pm. www.strawberrycapital.com

Girls on the Run at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark (2 S Mickey Mantle Dr) features a fun, family-friendly 5K. $20 & up. 7:45-11am. www.gotrcentralok.org Great Strides Walk at Myriad Botanical Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features a one-mile walk benefiting the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Fundraising encouraged. 9-11am. 787-0056, www. facebook.com/CFFOklahomaCity/ OKC Garden Fest at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features a variety of vendors with herbs, perennials, roses, produce, pottery, jewelry, wineries, food products and food trucks as well as children’s activities. Free to attend. 9am-4pm. 2551707, www.facebook.com/okcgardenfest/

Experience Summer Fun at

• Dance camps for ages 3-11 • In studio performance at end of camp • Summer dance classes for ages 2-18

405-348-3377 www.studiojdanceok.com

420 S. Santa Fe in Edmond

ENROLL TODAY! 405-832-5200 Afelsenthal@lt.life www.lifetime.life Life Time Athletic, 2501 W. Memorial Rd., OKC, OK 73134

Kids & tennis, a perfect combo. Let your kids out to play this summer. Our innovative SMART tennis is a great way to learn. They’ll have fun playing with other kids, and learn a sport they can play their whole lives. All ages and levels welcome. Life Time also offers full-day Kids Camps during the Summer. Contact hhozie@lt.life to learn more today!

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

23


CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

DogFest OKC at Mitch Park (1501 W Covell Rd, Edmond) features a community-based festival benefiting Canine Companions for Independence with speakers, dog demonstrations, music, food and more. Free to attend; fundraising encouraged. 11am3pm. www.cci.org/dogfestokc Opening Day at Andy Alligator’s Water Park (3300 Market Pl, Norman). $16.95; kids (2 & under), free. 11am-6pm. 321-7275, www.andyalligators.com FREE I Don’t Like Spiders or Snakes! Animal Program at the Norman Central Library (225 N Webster Ave, Norman) features a fun and lively talk about creepy, crawly critters with Naturalist Ernie Martin from Lake Thunderbird State Park. Learn about species identification and interact with some live creatures. Preregister. All ages welcome. 1-3:30pm. 217-0770, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org Red Day Run in Downtown Edmond (10 E Campbell St, Edmond) features a 5K and one-mile fun run benefiting

local charities. Registrants can choose from several local charities. $20 & up. 9am. www.centralokredday.com Mother’s Day Celebration at Science Museum Oklahoma (2020 Remington Pl) features educational children’s activities in celebration of moms. Free with admission. 10am-2pm. 5242905, www.okgardeners.org Railfest at Moore’s Central Park (700 S Broadway Ave, Moore) features a model train show, family activities including barrel train rides, food trucks, music and more. Model Clinics: $5; kids (8 & under), free. 10am-9pm. 793-5090, centralpark.cityofmoore.com/events Mother’s Day Celebration at the Chickasaw Cultural Center (867 Cooper Memorial Dr, Sulphur) features familyfriendly activities, special films and more. Adults, $6; moms & kids under 12, free. 10am-5pm. 580-622-7130, www.chickasawculturalcenter.com FREE See You Saturdays at Oklahoma Hall of Fame (1400 Classen Dr) features

NOW ENROLLING

Horse Summer Camp 405.340.3432

www.crosscreekstablesokc.com

themed experiences and learning opportunities for families to enjoy together including crafts and guided tours. All ages welcome. 10am-5pm. 235-4485, www.oklahomahof.com FREE Rural Heritage Festival at the Cherokee Strip Museum (2617 First St, Perry) features a variety of re-enactors depicting early Oklahoma life, crafts, demonstrations and more. Museum admission included. 10am-3pm. 580-3362405, www.cherokee-strip-museum.org Mother’s Day Sand Terrarium Workshop at Will Rogers Gardens (3400 NW 36th St). Learn the art of sandscaping. Supplies included. Preregister. All ages welcome, those under 12 need adult supervision. $30. 10am-noon. 297-1392, www.okc.gov/parksignup FREE Archaeology Day at Spiro Mounds Archaeological Center (18154 First St, Spiro) features professional archeologists and knowledgeable avocationalists, guided tours and demonstrations. 9am5pm. 918-962-2062, www.okhistory.org

Enroll for Summer Camps! Multiple weekly camps for ages 4-16 will be held June-August. $95/camp. Half-day sessions: 9-12 p.m. & 1-4 p.m.

Scan for Info!

Lil’ Kickers Summer Session runs 6/3 to 8/10. See our website for details

Enroll TODAY! 24 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

soccercityokcity.com 4520 Old Farm Road, OKC (west of Meridian, south of 122nd)

405-748-3888


Indian Taco Sale and Indie Market at the OK Choctaw Tribal Alliance (5320 S Young Blvd) features traditional Indian tacos and other native dishes as well as native vendors offering crafts and handmade goods. Benefits the OK Choctaw Tribal Alliance. Free to attend. 11am-2:30pm. 681-0869, www. facebook.com/okchoctawtribalalliance FREE Second Saturday: Drop-in Studio at Oklahoma Contemporary (3000 General Pershing Blvd) features an art-making project inspired by works of art on view at the museum. All children must be accompanied by an adult. All supplies provided. 1-4pm. 951-0000, www.oklahomacontemporary.org FREE Beats & Bites Festival at Riverwind Casino (1544 W State Hwy 9, Norman) features local food trucks, a beer garden, live entertainment, local vendors and inflatables. 6-11pm. Also held: June 8. 322-6000, www. facebook.com/RiverwindCasino/

OKC Philharmonic Classics Concert Deep German Romanticism at Civic Center Music Hall (201 N Walker Ave) features powerhouse German pieces and Richard Strauss’ “monster” piece Ein Heldenleben. $19 & up. 8pm. 8425387, www.okcphilharmonic.org

May 11 & 12

FREE Festival of Kites in Tulsa (4300 S 118th E Ave, Tulsa) features experienced kiters and unique kites. All ages are invited to learn new techniques and tricks. 10am-5pm. 918-630-9334, www. facebook.com/TulsaWindRiders Family Camp Out at Arcadia Lake (SE 15th St, Edmond) features tent camping, fishing, mountain biking, hiking and more. Set up and borrowed tents included. $60 per family. Saturday, noon-Sunday, noon. 359-4630, www.edmondparks.com

May 12

Mother’s Day Brunch at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) features a buffet

provided by The Petroleum Club. Preregister. Adults, $36; kids (5-10), $18; kids (4&under), free. 11am-2pm. 2321184, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org Darci Lynne and Friends - Fresh Out of the Box Tour at the Civic Center Music Hall (201 N Walker Ave) features singer/ventriloquist and winner of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” Darci Lynne Farmer of Edmond. $42 & up. 3pm. 594-8300, www.okcciviccenter.com Mother’s Day Cruise at Regatta Park Landing (701 S Lincoln Blvd) features a river cruise with bite sized desserts and mimosas at a cash bar. $30. 1 & 4pm. 702-7755, www.okrivercruises.com

May 14

Little Sapling Series at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features songs, games and interactive fun to learn about gardens. Members, $3; nonmembers, $4. Preregister. For ages 2-5. 10-11am. Also held: May 28. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org

goals

just add water. One month of progress in just one week. Our Jump Start Clinics are a quick and easy way to get your kids swim ready or to advance to the next level, while learning how to be safer in and around the water.

WHAT? 5 CONSECUTIVE 30-MINUTE LESSONS, SAME TIME, SAME INSTRUCTOR, MONDAY - FRIDAY WHEN? WEEKLY, JUNE 3 - AUGUST 9, 2019

COST? $111.25/MEMBERS, $138.35/NON-MEMBERS

BUY TWO JUMP START CLINICS, GET ONE FREE! Exp. 5/31

EDMOND | 405.696.7500 | goldfishswimschool.com |

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

25


CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

FREE Spy Academy at the Midwest City Library (8143 E Reno Ave, Midwest City). Learn how to write in code, stay undercover and find out about real spy tools, technologies and techniques. For ages 13 & up. 4:30-5:30pm. 7324828, www.metrolibrary.org

May 17 - 19

Tulsa International Mayfest in Downtown Tulsa (3rd & Main St, Tulsa) features an array of multi-disciplinary arts from dance, music and visual arts as well as festival food and hands-on art activities for kids. Free to attend. See website for schedule. 918-582-6435, tulsamayfest.org

May 16

FREE Story Time at The Boxcar (2100 N Eastern Ave, Moore) features story time, songs and a little bit of dancing hosted by representatives of the Moore library for kids ages 12 & under. 2-3pm. 759-7295, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org Third Thursdays at Oklahoma City Museum of Art (415 Couch Dr) features

hands-on art activities, live music, food and beverages and more. $12; members, free. 5-9pm. 236-3100, www.okcmoa.com Mysteries of the Overholser Mansion Tour at Henry Overholser Mansion (405 NW 15th St) features an after-hours tour of the mansion to examine archival materials and hear some amazing stories. Preregister. $20. 7-8:30pm. 525-5325, www.okhistory.org

May 16 - 18

Oklahoma State Baseball vs Baylor University at Allie P. Reynolds Stadium (701 N Duck. St, Stillwater). Prices vary. Friday & Saturday, 6:35pm; Sunday, 6:05pm. 877-All-4-OSU, www.okstate.com

May 17

FREE Third Friday Rides on the OKC Streetcars in Downtown Oklahoma City (various locations). Enjoy complimentary fares rides on the OKC Streetcars on the third Friday of the month, April - Sept. 235-7433, www.okcstreetcar.com

Endangered Species Day at the Oklahoma City Zoo (2101 NE 50th St). Discover ways you can help endangered species at activity stations throughout the zoo. 10am-2pm. 424-3344, www.okczoo.org FREE Movies in the Park at Moore’s Central Park (700 S Broadway Ave, Moore) features a screening of Incredibles 2. Concessions available. Movie begins at dark. 7-10pm. 793-5090, www.cityofmoore.com/centralpark Full Moon Bike Ride and Run at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features a leisurely one-hour bike ride or 5K run through downtown. $5 suggested donation. 8-9:30pm. 4457080, www.myriadgardens.org

May 17 & 18

May Daze Festival in Downtown Blanchard (Main St, Blanchard) features live entertainment, a carnival, food, shopping, games, competitions and more. Free to attend. 10am-8pm. 485-8787, blanchardchamber.publishpath.com/events

AUTISM TREATMENT CENTER ABA & SPEECH THERAPY

INSURANCE ACCEPTED CENTER-BASED & IN HOME

844-422-2669

THERAPYANDBEYOND.COM

26

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019


May 18

RIVERSPORT Challenge in the Boathouse District (725 S Lincoln Blvd) features a multi-sport event that includes a 500-meter kayak race and a 5K run. The race is open to both adults and kids 8 & up. Benefits the Oklahoma City Boathouse Foundation’s youth outreach programs. Adults, $35; kids (12-17), $25. 8-10am. 552-4040, www.riversportokc.org

Garden Festival in the Park at Will Rogers Gardens (3400 NW 36th St) features heirloom plants, stained glass, jewelry and plants that do well in Oklahoma’s special climate as well as kid’s garden activities and a disc golf tournament. All ages welcome. Free to attend. 9am-3:30pm. 2971394, www.okc.gov/parksignup OKC Whitewater Festival at RIVERSPORT Adventures (800 Riversport Dr) features R4 Rafting National Championship and American Canoe Association Slalom trials, Extreme Canoe Slalom Trials and a

freestyle kayaking competition as well as music and special Monster Energy BMX Team exhibitions. Attendees can experience the new Slide the Rapids for free, courtesy of Love’s Travel Stops and Country Stores. Free to attend; parking, $10. See website for schedule. 552-4040, www.riversportokc.org FREE BikeMoore Group Ride at Southgate/Rippetoe Elementary (500 N Norman Ave, Moore). Families and bicycle enthusiasts can participate in a community bike ride. Two route options available. All experience levels are welcome. Preregister. 9am-noon. 7935054, www.facebook.com/bikemooreok/ FREE Geek Con at the Downtown Library (300 Park Ave) features themed escape rooms, crafts, minipanels, anime screenings, a cosplay fashion show, face painting and more. Costumes are encouraged. All ages welcome. Preregistration required for some activities. 10am-4pm. 6063852, www.metrolibrary.org

Village Fair at First Liberty Bank (9601 N May Ave) features food trucks, inflatables, a touch a truck, live performances and local shopping. Free to attend. 9am-4pm. www.facebook. com/thevillagefairatlibertybank/ Okie Sampler at Chester’s Party Barn & Farm (5201 Cimmaron Rd NW, Piedmont) features a full day of shopping, food & fun including a kids’ festival, food trucks, a monster truck show, live music, entertainment, pony rides, hay rides, petting zoo and more. $5; kids (1&under), free. 10am-6pm. 373-1595, www.okiesampler.com Okie Made Market at OKC Farmers Market District (1300 SW 2nd St) features an outdoor market with vendors that carry products strictly made in Oklahoma including handmade decor, handmade furniture, handmade clothing, crafts, canned goods/packaged foods, fresh vegetables, wine, art and more. Free to attend. 10am-6pm. 8106977, www.revolve-productions.com

A NNUA L F ESTIVA L ME MO R I A L D A Y W E E K E ND • MA Y 2 5 – 2 6 1 0 :0 0 A . M . – 4 :0 0 P. M . Join us for a fun-filled family weekend. For more information, visit nationalcowboymuseum.org/chuckwagon

C H I L D R E N 1 2 & UND E R F R E E

$ 1 5 A d mi ssi on • $ 5 Off for La st F ronti er Scou ts (w ea r y our uni form) 1700 Northeast 63rd Street Oklahoma City, OK 73111 (405) 478-2250 • nationalcowboymuseum.org

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

27


“SOUTHEASTERN POTTERY” by JOANNA UNDERWOOD CHICKASAW OKA' CHOKMASI in Sulphur, Oklahoma

CALENDAR #OKCFAMILYFUN

Mud Factor at Oklahoma Motorsports Complex (3501 N Interstate Dr, Norman) features a muddy 5K & 3K obstacle run. Family waves allow parents and kids ages 4-13 to run together. $29-$39; parking, $15; spectators, $10. Family waves: 10 & 10:15am; adult waves: 11, 11:15 & 11:30am. mudfactor.com/okc Super Saturdays at Sam Noble Museum (2401 Chautauqua Ave, Norman) features balloon animals, animal-themed yoga, crafts, scavenger hunts and more. 10am-2pm; food trucks, 11am-1pm. 325-4712, samnoblemuseum.ou.edu FREE Rock the Park at Choctaw Creek Park (2001 N Harper Rd, Choctaw) features live music, food trucks, inflatables and games. All ages welcome. 5-11pm. 281-6854, mychoctaw.org/315/Rock-the-Park

6TH ANNUAL

Family Fun Night at Kickingbird Golf Club (1600 E Danforth Rd, Edmond). Play 9-holes with the family with special junior tees set up and putt around on the FREE putting course. $8 green fee; $8 carts. 5pm. 341-5350, www.kickingbirdgolf.com FREE Heard on Hurd Street Fest in Edmond (Broadway between 1st & Hurd) features local food, unique shopping and live music. 6-10pm. www. citizensedmond.com/heardonhurd.htm

May 17 & 18 B E N J A M I N H A R J O J R. ABSENTEE SHAWNEE SEMINOLE

TYRA SHACKLEFORD CHICKASAW

Featuring over 100 premier Native American artists from around the country. Enjoy fine art, live music, artist talks, food vendors and fun for all ages.

Saturday, May 25 • 10 a.m.-6 p.m. DOWNTOWN SULPHUR, OKLAHOMA 580-272-5520 • #VisitChickasaw Free parking and shuttle from the Chickasaw Cultural Center!

FREE Celebration of Freedom in Hobart (507 S Main St, Hobart) features live music, a large silent auction, a children’s pageant, activities for kids, a skeet and trap shoot, DARE Dunk-aCop fundraiser, a parade, car show and more. See website for schedule. 580-7265900, www.tommyfranksmuseum.org

May 21

FREE Bricktown Beach opens at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark (2 S Mickey Mantle Blvd). The beach features a large sand-filled outdoor park area with umbrellas, lounge chairs, sand volleyball equipment and outdoor games. Open to the public 24 hours a day. downtownokc.com/bricktown-beach/

May 21 - 26

Cats at Civic Center Music Hall (201 N Walker Ave) features the record-breaking musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber. Cats tells the story of one magical night when an extraordinary tribe of cats gathers for

28 BILL ANOATUBBY GOVERNOR

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

its annual ball to rejoice and decide which cat will be reborn. Best suited for ages 5 & up. Tuesday-Thursday, 7:30pm; Friday, 8pm; Saturday, 2 & 8pm; Sunday, 2 & 7pm. 594-8300, www.okcbroadway.com

May 22 - 26

Phillips 66 Big 12 Baseball Championship at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark (2 S Mickey Mantle) features eight teams competing in a single elimination tournament for the right to be crowned Big 12 Baseball Tournament Champion. $12 & up; all session tickets, $69 & up. See website for game times. 236-5000, www.big12sports.com

May 23

FREE Summer Concert Series at Hafer Park (1034 S Bryant Ave, Edmond) features live performances by local bands. 6:15-8:45pm. Also held May 30. 3594630, www.edmondok.com/concerts

FREE Family Game Night at The Station at Moore’s Central Park (700 S Broadway, Moore) features a variety of different games like Monopoly, card games, Ping Pong and more. All ages welcome. Kids under age 6 must be accompanied by an adult. 7:30-9:30pm. 793-5090, centralpark.cityofmoore.com

May 25

Toddler Palooza at the Lost Lakes Amphitheater (3501 NE 10th St) features Pinkfong and Baby Shark Live. $35$65. Noon-6pm. www.ticketfly.com Opening Day at Pelican Bay Aquatic Center (1034 D Bryant Rd, Edmond). Over 48”, $7; 30”-47”, $5; infants and toddlers under 30”, free. 11am-6pm. 216-7649, www.pelicanbayaquatics.com Artesian Arts Festival at the Artesian Plaza (West Muskogee Ave, Sulphur) features Native American art from across the country, food, children’s activities, Native dancing and live music throughout the day. Free to attend. 10am-6pm. 580272-5520, www.chickasawcountry.com Bethany 66 Festival (38th St & 39th Expressway, between Peniel & Asbury) features a children’s princess and action hero parade, car show, arts and crafts, food trucks, corn hole tournament and more. Free to attend. 10am-6pm. 312-0155, www.bethanyimprovementfoundation. com/bethany-66-festival/


May 25 & 26

Chuck Wagon Festival at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) features a two-day, funfilled family weekend with chuck wagon food samples, hands-on activities, artisan demonstrations, live music, Western reenactors, face painting, dress up areas and more​. $15; kids (12 & under) & museum members, free. 10am-4pm. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org

Memorial Day Celebration at the Chickasaw Cultural Center (867 Cooper Memorial Dr, Sulphur) features cultural demonstrations, traditional games and a family films. Fees apply for films and admission to the exhibit halls. Saturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. 580-6227130, www.chickasawculturalcenter.com

May 25 - 27

Paseo Arts Festival in the Paseo Arts District (3022 Paseo St) features dozens of artists selling original artwork in a variety of mediums as well as live performers, musicians and food vendors. Free to attend. Saturday & Sunday, 10am-10pm; Monday, 11am-6pm; children’s area: Saturday & Sunday, 11am-6pm; Monday, 11am-5pm. 525-2688, www.thepaseo.org

May 27

FREE Memorial Day Celebration at the 45th Infantry Museum (2145 NE 36th St) features a helicopter flyover, massing of the colors, patriotic music and distinguished guest speakers. 10am. 424-5313, www.45thdivisionmuseum.com

May 28

FREE Cake Decorating Workshop at the Capitol Hill Library (327 SW 27th St) features a local baker and cake decorator who will teach handy techniques to use at home. Preregister. For ages 10 & up. 5-7pm. 634-6308, www.metrolibrary.org

May 29

FREE Teen Cooking Class at the Norman East Library (3051 E Alameda St, Norman). Learn to prepare delicious, simple and healthy meals for the summer from Brenda Hill of OSU Extension. Preregister. Best suited for ages 12 & up. 2-3pm. 217-0770, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org

May 30

FREE Summer Thursdays at Oklahoma Hall of Fame (1400 Classen

Dr) features story time, a movie, crafts and as well as special themed activities. 10:30am. Also held June 6. 523-3230, www.oklahomahof.com FREE Father’s Day Make & Take at the Norman West Library (300 Norman Center Ct, Norman). Make dad a personalized glass mug, just in time for Father’s Day. All supplies provided. Preregister. Ages 12 & up. 5:30-7pm. 701-2644, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org

Happy Hour ! Mondayshoes

ling & S 1/2 Price Bow se. Every Open to Clo Monday!

May 30 - June 1

Oklahoma Magnolia Festival at the Choctaw Event Center (3702 Choctaw Rd, Durant) features family-friendly games & festivities, ferris wheel rides, carnival, crafts and live entertainment. Free to attend. See website for schedule. 580924-0848, www.magnoliafestival.com Chillin & Grillin BBQ Festival in Sand Springs (109 N Garfield Ave, Sand Springs) features live music, arts & crafts, a car show, carnival filled with children’s activities and Kansas City Barbecue Society sanctioned BBQ competition. Tasting kits: adults, $10; kids (6-12), $5; carnival wristbands, $20-$25. Thursday & Friday, 6-11pm & Saturday, 10am-10pm. 918-2453221, www.sandspringschamber.com

Ask about our party packages!

May 31

FREE H&8th Night Market in Midtown (Hudson Ave & NW 8th St) features a family and pet friendly street festival held in conjunction with the ProAm Classic, a race for amateur and elite cyclists. Enjoy food trucks, live music and a view of the racing action. 7-11pm. www.h8thokc.com

FREE Line Dancing for Beginners at the Moore Library (225 S Howard Ave, Moore) features an introduction to line dancing with instructor, Claudia Clark. Preregister. Space is limited. Participants under 18 must have parent/guardian consent and signature. 6-7:30pm. 7935100, www.pioneerlibrarysystem.org

May 31 - June 2

Sunfest in Bartlesville at Sooner Park (420 SE Madison Blvd, Bartlesville) features live musical entertainment, arts & crafts, children’s games, storytellers, food and more. Free to attend. Friday, 3-10pm; Saturday, 10am10pm; Sunday, 10am-4pm. 785-4359023, www.bartlesvillesunfest.org

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

29

Ou Hourr s Ope

n at 4P M Mon Open a -Fri t 11AM Sat & S un

Midtown OKC

421 NW 10th | 405.609.3302 dustbowlok.com


Weekly EVENTS CALENDAR

Have a problem dog? Don’t despair, we can help! K9 University 405-231-4335 9217 NW Expressway, OKC facebook.com/MyK9U, Twitter: @K9University,

www.myk9u.com YouTube: K9University


FREE Tours at Oklahoma Governor’s Mansion (820 NE 23rd St) features an upclose look at many of the unique features and items such as the Oklahoma-shaped pool. Preregister. Wednesdays, noon-3pm. 528-2020, www.fomok.org/tours.php

FREE Nature Tales at Martin Park Nature Center (5000 W Memorial Rd) features an activity time for kids ages 2 to 7 with a nature-themed story time. Preregister. Thursdays & Saturdays, 10:30-11:15am. 297-1429, www.okc.gov/parksignup

FREE Hooked on Fishing Lessons at Oklahoma City Ponds & Lakes (various locations). Young anglers learn fishing basics including knot-tying, casting, fish identification, angler ethics and fishing regulations. Preregister. Saturdays, 8-10:15am. 297-1426, www.okc.gov

FREE Mother Goose on the Loose Story Time at the Piedmont Library (1129 Stout St NW, Piedmont) features a variety of activities such as rhymes, songs, puppets and instruments. For ages birth to 3. Fridays, 10am. 3739018, www.piedmont.okpls.org

FREE Wheeler Criterium at Wheeler Park (1701 S Western Ave) features biking racing, live music and food trucks. Tuesdays, 5-8pm. www.wheelerdistrict.com

FREE Littles Story Time at Commonplace Books (1325 N Walker Ave) features a half-hour, all-ages story time. Saturdays, 10:30am. 534-4540, www.commonplacebooksokc.com

FREE Art Adventures at Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art (555 Elm, Norman) for ages 3-5. Young artists are invited to experience art through books. Tuesdays, 10:30am. 325-3272, www.ou.edu/fjjma Family Skate Night at Skate Galaxy (5800 NW 36th St). Admission includes basic skate rental. (Family package coupon available at www. metrofamilymagazine.com/coupons). $6. Thursdays, 7-10pm; Sundays, 6-8pm. 605-2758, www.skategalaxyokc.com

FREE Story Time at Barnes and Noble (13800 N May Ave) features a special story time with games and occasionally costumed characters. Saturdays, 11am. 755-1155, stores.barnesandnoble.com FREE Crafts for Kids at Lakeshore Learning (6300 N May Ave) features crafts for kids ages 3 & up. No reservations necessary. Saturdays, 11am-3pm. 8588778, www.lakeshorelearning.com

FREE Preschool Story Time at the Mabel C. Fry Public Library (1200 Lakeshore Dr, Yukon) for ages 3 to kindergarten. Tuesdays, 11:30am. 354-8232, www.yukonok.gov/citydepartments/mabel-c-fry-public-library/

FREE Storytime & Activities at the Norman Barnes & Noble (540 Ed Noble Parkway, Norman) features a themed story time and related activity. Saturdays, 11-11:45am. 5798800, stores.barnesandnoble.com

FREE Reading Wednesdays Story Time at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave) features a nature-themed story time and craft activity. Best suited for ages 2-5. Walkups welcome. Wednesdays, 10am. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org

FREE Learn to Skate Lesson at Skate Galaxy (5800 NW 36th St) features a FREE roller skating lesson. No sign up required. Skate rentals start at $2. All ages welcome. Saturdays, noon. 6022758, www.skategalaxyokc.com

Early Explorers at Science Museum Oklahoma (2020 Remington Pl) features come & go, hands-on science activities for kids ages 6 & under. No registration required. Free with admission. Wednesdays, 10-11am. 602-6664, www.sciencemuseumok.org

FREE Moore Chess Club at the Moore Library (225 S Howard Ave, Moore). Learn to play or improve your skills with other local players. All ages and skill levels welcome. Sundays, 1-4pm. ishkissenger@gmail.com

Toddler Story & Craft Time at Unpluggits Paint & Play (575 Enterprise Dr, Ste 110, Edmond) features a short story time and age appropriate craft. Free with admission. Wednesdays & Thursdays, 11-11:30am. 340-7584, www.unpluggits.com

Summer @CCS

Discovery Time at Sam Noble Museum (2401 Chautauqua Ave, Norman) features interactive, hands-on activities such as stories, crafts and discovery table specimens. For preschool & elementary-aged kids. Free with admission. Saturdays, 2pm; Sundays, 2:30pm. 325-4712, samnoblemuseum.ou.edu

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

31

July 8-11 & July 22-25

Offering a great selection of PS-12 classes.

View your choices and register online at

summeratccs.com

Note: Dates for sports camps may vary.


Ongoing EVENTS CALENDAR Through May 12

Ancient. Massive. Wild. – The Bison Exhibit at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) celebrates the history and significance of the United States’ first national mammal and highlights the importance of its preservation and conservation. The exhibit features interactive experiences that combine history, artifacts and hands-on activities. Adults, $12.50, students, $9.75; kids (6-12), $5.75; kids (5 & under), free. Monday-Saturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org

YMCA CAMP CLASSEN OVERNIGHT CAMP 2019 SESSION 1 June 2-15

SESSION 3 June 30-July 13

CLP SESSIONS

A) June 2-8 B) June 9-15

A) June 30-July 6 B) July 7-13

Session 1

SESSION 2 June 16-29

EXPLORER CAMP July 14-17

A) June 16-22 B) June 23-29

(ages 16-17) June 2-22

Session 2 June 23-July13

(ages 6-12)

ONE WEEK $750 TWO WEEKS $1,280 EXPLORER CAMP $425

CAMPER LEADERSHIP PROGRAM (CLP) $1,200 Financial Assistance is available.

REGISTER TODAY! YMCAOKC.ORG/CAMP | 580 369 2272


REGISTRATION OPEN NOW

Through May 12

Off the Wall at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art (415 Couch Dr) features a detailed look at one hundred years of sculpture. Adults, $12; kids (6-18), $5; kids (5 & under), free. WednesdaySaturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, noon5pm. 236-3100, www.okcmoa.com

Winged Tapestries: Moths At Large at Sam Noble Museum (2401 Chautauqua Ave, Norman) features the art of Jim Des Rivieres. Adults, $8; kids (4-17), $5; kids (3 & under), free. MondaySaturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, 1-5pm. 325-4712, samnoblemuseum.ou.edu

Through May 19

Artster Oklahoma at the Oklahoma Hall of Fame (1400 Classen Dr) features artists Michelle LaVasque and Espanta Steppe as they connect with other Oklahoma artists. Adults, $7; kids (6-17), $5, kids (5 & under), free. TuesdayFriday, 9am-5pm; Saturday, 10am-5pm. 235-4458, www.oklahomahof.com FREE Tatyana Fazlalizadeh: Oklahoma is Black at Oklahoma Contemporary (3000 General Pershing Blvd) features the first major exhibition in the state for the Oklahoma native. The exhibit is a depiction and celebration of Oklahoma City’s rich black history. Monday-Saturday, 9am10pm; Sunday, 11am-6pm. 951-0000, www.oklahomacontemporary.org

Opening May 25

Under the Arctic: Digging into Permafrost at Sam Noble Museum (2401 Chautauqua Ave, Norman). Adults, $8; kids (4 - 17), $5; kids (3 & under) free. Monday-Saturday, 10am-5pm; Sunday, 1-5pm. 3254712, samnoblemuseum.ou.edu

Through May 28

FREE Love of Color at Myriad Gardens Visitor Center (301 W Reno Ave) features paintings by Nancy Junkin. Judkin works with oil and acrylic paints, occasionally incorporating mixed media. Monday Saturday, 9am-5pm; Sunday, 11am-5pm. 445-7080, www.myriadgardens.org

She Persisted at Science Museum Oklahoma (2020 Remington Pl) features award winning female artists and varied artwork including stained glass mosaics, leather sculptures, basketry, watercolor, pottery and oil. Each artist has ties to Oklahoma. Free with admission. Adults, $15.95; kids (312), $12.95. Monday-Fiday, 9am-5pm; Saturday, 9am-6pm; Sunday, 11am-6pm. 602-6664, www.sciencemuseumok.org

Through June 30

Will Work For... A Mike Wimmer Project at the Oklahoma History Center (800 Nazih Zudhi) features portraits of models holding the iconic cardboard sign that completes the phrase “Will Work For …” Wimmer asked people of every social group what they would work for and what inspires them as individuals. Free with admission. Adults, $7, kids (6-18); kids (5 & under), free. Monday-Saturday, 10am-5pm. 521-2491, www.okhistory.org

Through July 14

Horseplay at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (1700 NE 63rd St) features Tom Lovell’s sketches and studies of this Western icon. The rarely seen prep work reveals how Lovell, known as America’s preeminent horse trainer, developed ideas and practiced movement, anatomy, proportion and personality. Adults, $12.50; students, $9.75; kids (6-18), $5.75; kids (5 & under), free. Monday-Saturday, 10am5pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. 478-2250, www.nationalcowboymuseum.org

Through Oct. 30

Unsolved History: Forensic Science, Cold Cases, and Art Therapy at Oklahoma History Center (800 Nazih Zuhdi) features 11 artistic creations by Oklahoma-based artists and art therapists who work with the families of victims in cold case crimes. Each piece reflects the collaboration between the artist and the family. Free with admission. Adults, $7, kids (6-18); kids (5 & under), free. Monday-Saturday, 10am-5pm. 521-2491, www.okhistory.org

Find more information about these exhibits and other current museum exhibits at www.metrofamilymagazine.com/museums.

SUMMER BREAK

All exhibits are free with admission unless otherwise stated. Admission to the venues is listed.

CAMP CONTEMPORARY

May 28 - June 28 Fairgrounds Camps for 4- to 12-year-olds provide exciting studio experiences across artistic disciplines, including ceramics, robotics, installation, printmaking and more! Register now at

okcontemp.org.

oklahomacontemporary.org METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

33

405.951.0000 | @okcontemporary 3000 General Pershing Blvd. OKC


Joy

Choosing The Hollingsworth & Gillett family

BY ERIN PAGE. PHOTOS BY KIMERA GONZALEZ

Eight years ago, Whitney Hollingsworth and Linque Gillett were inspired to become foster parents by a teen in their community who needed a foster placement. Hollingsworth is a program field representative for the Oklahoma Department of Human Services and Gillettt, who previously worked for DHS, owns a law practice specializing in foster care and adoption representation. But their professional experiences and as parents of five kids plus foster children doesn’t make them immune to the emotions of their ever-changing journey. “I have learned more about myself than I ever wanted to,” said Hollingsworth. “I can be selfish, needy and get my feelings hurt. I get embarrassed, flustered and nervous. But just because something is uncomfortable doesn’t make it wrong. It’s hard, and it’s the right thing.” Hollingsworth and Gillett’s focus is on fostering children whose case goal is reunification. Though they haven’t said yes to every call for placement, they’ve said no very few times. They have fostered more than 40 children, helping four sets of children reunify with their families and adopting two of their foster children. “We want to be involved in supervising visitations and giving parents the opportunity to learn parenting while doing what is needed to raise kids safely,” said Hollingsworth. “They love their kids, but because of their circumstances are not in a position to raise them. We give them the benefit of the doubt and assume this isn’t what they wanted to happen.” When a child has experienced physical or emotional trauma or neglect in their

34 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

FOSTER MOM WHITNEY HOLLINGSWORTH AND BIO MOM MIRANDA WIETELMAN WITH THE WIETELMAN BOYS.

biological home, it can be hard not to have a visceral reaction to the people who caused it. But Hollingsworth has realized that regardless of the circumstances, the kids she fosters love their parents and she respects and loves those children enough to build relationships with their parents. “How would it feel to them if I was not honoring where they came from, part of who they are, the person that made them?” Hollingsworth ponders. “And how is it possible that I can understand every person’s individual choices? I can’t get caught up in whether it looks like the way I would parent.” Hollingsworth says cases are few and far between where abuse was so atrocious it would never be safe for biological parents to have contact with their kids. Whether permanency became reunification or adoption, all the kids her family has fostered have maintained relationships with birth parents, and she has been instrumental in that process.

Restoring families After their first foster placement, Hollingsworth received a call for two brothers, likely to get separated because one needed a therapeutic foster home to help manage behavior issues. Though unsure whether they could meet their needs, Hollingsworth knew her family could at least give DHS more time to potentially find a home for them together. After keeping the brothers over a long holiday weekend, they learned the boys’ potential placement had fallen through. “We knew it would be hard but someone has to do it,” recalls Hollingsworth of their decision to foster the brothers. “He’s a fouryear-old kid who is valuable. If his needs can be met in my home, then I will try my best to do it.” Four-year-old Cavin had been in 10 foster homes within 90 days, and there were periods of time when he and younger brother Aric’s mom, Miranda Wietelman, didn’t know where her boys were or who was caring for them.


ARCHER HUGS HER FOSTER SISTER

LEFT TO RIGHT: ARIC (FORMER FOSTER), CROSS, LUKE (ADOPTED, HOLDING FOSTER SISTER), AUBREY, ARCHER (ADOPTED), CAVIN (FORMER FOSTER).

mattered,” said Wietelman, who says an abusive relationship and subsequent removal of her kids shattered her self-esteem. “Whitney told me it wasn’t my fault and that we were going to deal with it together.” When Wietelman’s youngest son started calling Hollingsworth ‘mommy,’ she was relieved instead of offended.

ARIC AND CAVIN

“It was already a horrible experience and then to not know who the people are in charge of your kids … I didn’t know where they were or if they were safe,” said Wietelman. When Wietelman first met Hollingsworth, she was wary. “I was really angry, and anyone contributing to my kids not being with me was the enemy,” said Wietelman. “Initially, I saw her that way, but she was nice about it and she understood.” Slowly, the two developed a relationship as Wietelman saw her boys were well cared for. Hollingsworth invited her into her home to visit the boys or put them to bed, or took the boys to her when she couldn’t make it to see them. Wietelman was shocked when Hollingworth told their case workers she wouldn’t put Cavin on medication for ADHD without Wietelman’s consent, knowing Wietelman had misgivings. “She didn’t have to take what I said into consideration, but she made me feel like I was a person and what I thought or said

“He started calling her mommy because he trusts her,” said Wietelman. “They need to be safe and cared for and loved. If they can’t be with me, they need someone to love them like that.” Though determined to work together, the mothers’ relationship wasn’t without strain. Cavin and Aric remained in foster care for nearly four years, an extensive time by Oklahoma foster care standards which is 20 months (Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System, 2015). Hollingsworth recalls a particularly charged conversation after a court proceeding as consideration was given to terminate Wietelman’s parental rights. “I told her her kids were languishing in foster care,” said Hollingsworth. “This is stressful for them, they aren’t capable of living between two homes and they need a plan for their future.” When Hollingsworth implored her to work harder to complete her court-ordered plan or sign over parental rights, Wietelman considered asking Hollingsworth and Gillett to adopt her sons. “I felt like they had a better life with them,” said Wietelman. “They were better able to provide, have a nicer house. To me, she was

a much better mom than I could ever be. But she said, ‘no, they are better with you because you are their mom.’” Hollingsworth’s faith in her, and her boys’ desire to come home despite their love of their foster family, gave Wietelman the courage to overcome her anger and selfdoubt. Weitelman fought to complete her degree to become a medical assistant, opting to pay for school over her electric bill in her final month. She pushed back her final court date so she could earn her degree before her boys came home, knowing she couldn’t properly care for them while in school or afford daycare. The delays frustrated Hollingsworth at the time but she has since realized Wietelman was fighting to give her boys consistency and stability. “She was right about what was in her family’s best interest,” said Hollingsworth. “She decided what her boys needed from her, to have an office job where she is respected and contributes to the well-being of others, and she did it.” Wietelman’s boys came home the weekend before she graduated. “I was determined to finish, to set a good example for them that if you finish school and do well you can have a better job and a better life,” said Wietelman. That life includes an ongoing relationship with the family who raised her boys for nearly four years. Even with her stable job, Wietelman occasionally struggles financially or with how to parent her boys’ sometimes challenging behaviors.

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

35


SAY YES TO FOSTER CARE

“Having my kids taken away was the worst thing that’s happened to me, but it’s been a blessing in disguise because we have gained a family,” said Wietelman. “We have a support system we didn’t have before. It’s tough to be a parent, no matter what your situation is, even if you’re not struggling.” The families celebrate the holidays and plan the boys’ birthdays together, and the boys occasionally stay the night with their former foster family. Hollingsworth purchases shoes or school supplies for the boys, helps enroll them in sports, takes them to get their hair cut and has even helped with some medical bills. Wietelman says Hollingsworth readily provides a listening ear or advice without judgment.

ers w o P r e p Su d e r i u q e R Not Let us take the journey alongside you.

www.circleofcare.org Statewide Toll Free | 866-978-2956

Find inspiration and information about becoming a foster parent

“I don’t think she even realizes how much things like that help when things are tough,” said Wietelman. “They’ve never had alternative motives for what they do, they are just good people.”

Family by choice Wietelman began to see that selflessness when she first got to know Hollingsworth and Gillett. At the time, the family was in the process of adopting daughter Archer, who has kept an ongoing relationship with her birth mom. While Archer’s birth mom was in prison Hollingsworth took her to visit, they also celebrate holidays together and host her biological family for birthday parties. Before being imprisoned, Archer’s birth mom made the difficult decision to relinquish her parental rights and asked Hollingsworth and Gillett to adopt her daughter. “She relinquished not because she didn’t love her or she wasn’t worth the work but because she couldn’t care for her,” said Hollingsworth. “She couldn’t provide a safe home and knew it was unfair for her to continue to bond in a foster home and then get taken away.” Hollingsworth feels extremely fortunate that Archer’s birth mom is respectful of their role in their daughter’s life and appreciates the care they provide her. But managing expectations, open communication and high emotions isn’t always easy for either party. When 6-year-old Archer is bent out of shape for being put in time out, saying “I miss my

This is one part of a year-long series highlighting foster families in the Oklahoma City metro. For more, visit www.metrofamilymagazine.com/foster.

www.metrofamilymagazine.com/foster

36 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

real mom,” Hollingsworth swallows the sting, honors Archer’s feelings and texts her birth mom so they can share in the humor of the situation together. When Archer’s birth mom recently offered to host her sixth birthday party, it took Hollingsworth, who wasn’t sure she wanted to surrender those honors, a deep breath and phone call to realize she simply wanted to plan a special event for Archer’s biological family, taking the pressure off Hollingsworth for hosting as she’s done in the past. “My feelings aren’t always logical, so I have to make decisions based on my commitment to my daughter and her birth mom,” said Hollingsworth. While Hollingsworth and Gillett want to control the narrative of the relationship, it’s most important that Archer know how loved she is, by them and her birth mom.

Honoring their calling Communication has been paramount in the family’s last 14 months fostering a nonambulatory child with cerebral palsy. Though initially they agreed to foster her for a few weeks, when the placement became more long-term, Hollingsworth asked their DHS worker to help with transportation to therapy and doctor appointments occasionally and developed a schedule with her employer to come in late a few times a week. “We have made it work and it has been a joy to care for her,” said Hollingsworth. When asked if she and Gillett worry about their kids being exposed to the challenges of the foster care system and the trauma their foster siblings have endured, Hollingsworth replies she’d be worried about her kids in today’s world no matter what. Fostering has made her a more intentional parent, grown her family’s faith and allowed she and Gillett to teach their children what it looks like to live out God’s calling for them to care for others. “I hope when I die, I am exhausted and my body is worn, my hands are tired and my heart is full,” said Hollingsworth. “When my kids look back, I hope they remember things like sticker books and thoughtful gestures on their birthdays, but mostly that their parents valued caring for others.”

METROFAMILY’S FOSTER CARE SERIES IS GENEROUSLY SPONSORED BY


MARKET-LEADING COMPENSATION – THAT’S THE KIMRAY WAY.

apply online at careers.kimray.com


EXPLORING OKLAHOMA WITH CHILDREN

UNIQUE ACCOMMODATIONS

When planning a trip, lodging decisions typically take a back seat to your itinerary. But these quirky, out-of-the-box accommodations are sure to take center stage. Load up the family for a memorable nights’ stay on your next getaway. BY LINDSAY CUOMO. PHOTOS PROVIDED.

ORR FAMILY FARM

Step up your traditional tent camp with a stay in a canvas-walled tent at Osage Hills State Park. Osage Hills State Park is best known for its natural beauty with a diverse natural landscape and prime fishing spots but the park is now home to a unique camping option. Think old school military barracks or a miner’s encampment and you’ll have a good idea of the canvas-walled tents available for families to enjoy. Comforts like a pitched roofline, platform wooden floor, benches and cots make for an easy, no-hassle step up. Park staff installs wood stoves in the tents during the cooler months so campers can be comfortable year round. Leave the bulky gear at home and just show up with some extra chairs, a few supplies and you are ready for an adventure. Visitors can also enjoy tennis courts, a swimming pool, modern bathhouses and more during their stay.

OSAGE HILLS STATE PARK

38 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

Tents are $45 a night with a two-night minimum on weekends. Each tent sleeps up to six.


Pioneer your next getaway in a covered wagon at Robbers Cave State Park or Orr Family Farm. ‘Roughing it’ has a new look! Robbers Cave State Park put an Old West spin on their newest lodging option. Families can stay in a covered wagon complete with all kinds of modern amenities including heat, air conditioning, a mini fridge and queen size beds. ABOVE AND TOP RIGHT: ROBBERS CAVE STATE PARK

Escape to a floating villa on Lake Murray. You aren’t going to find a more waterfront stay than the floating villas on Lake Murray. Be right on the water and enjoy vaulted ceilings, spacious docks, private balconies and panoramic views in one of the luxury cabins.

For a closer-to-home option, Orr Family Farm in south Oklahoma City has Conestoga wagons designed to look like the wagons pioneers used in the 19th century. Inside, families can enjoy bunk beds, heating and air conditioning as well as a private charcoal grill and a group fire pit. Campers also get access to a Signature Swim Spa and some of the farm’s activities including pedal boats, fishing, gaga ball, a giant jumping pillow and more. The covered wagons at Robbers Cave are $65 per night with a two-night minimum on weekends. Orr Family Farm has family and large group options available year-round. Their wagons start at $195/night for a family of 4 to 6.

Each has a fully-stocked kitchen with modern amenities and is within a mile of restaurants and a golf course. Lake Murray State Park offers a variety of water sports, hiking, ATV trails, historic sites and more. Rates start at $150 a night.

Kick back in a Western Town at Redneck Riviera Resort & Ranch. You may recognize the ranch from the TV show “Hillbilly Handfishin.” Some of the cabins at this ranch take the shape of an old Western town façade offering families a fun way to kick back and enjoy the spacious southern Oklahoma views of the nearby Red River. Tongue and cheek signs add to the destination’s whimsy. Families can also enjoy hunting, fishing, ATV rides and more. Rates start at $75 and range from one to three bedrooms.

ORR FAMILY FARM

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

39


Bunk in a turn-of-the-century train car at Rebel Hill Guest Ranch.

SPRING TRADITIONS

The Rebel Hill Express is a refurbished, Victorian passenger car turned cabin, with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a rock shower and claw-foot tub. Filled with antiques and classic décor, your family will feel like they have traveled back in time. It’s fully stocked with everything you need

including pots and pans. All you need to bring are your personal items and food. The train sleeps up to six and the working ranch offers horseback riding, canoeing, fishing and more. A weekend stay in the Rebel Hill Express is $350 and the weeknight rate is $150.

WELCOME THE PLANTING SEASON

Our campus tells the story of the resilient Chickasaw people. Share in the discovery of our traditions and join us in celebrating Spring’s vitality with daily cultural activities!

REBEL HILL GUEST RANCH

Sleep under the stars in a teepee at Roman Nose State Park. Sights and sounds of Spring have emerged all over campus.

Tour lush gardens where the “THREE SISTERS,” beans, corn and squash, have taken root.

In keeping with the park’s namesake heritage, families can stay in a rustic teepee. Constructed from wood and canvas, the unique structures add to the excitement of the adventures at the park. Large enough to sleep up to four adults, the teepees are

OUR SKY PAVILION offers a bird’s-eye view of our Traditional Village and the Chickasaw National Recreation Area.

ROMAN NOSE STATE PARK

ChickasawCulturalCenter.com • Sulphur, OK • 580-622-7130

40 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

equipped with indoor/outdoor carpet on a concrete pad, an electric outlet, a picnic table and an outdoor fire ring and grill. Teepees are available from April to October and cost $27 a night with a twonight minimum on weekends.


Recreate a childhood dream in a tree house at Ra’s Eufaula Treehouse Treesort. Towering high about the ground, a stay in one of two elaborate tree houses near Lake Eufaula will feel like something right out of the pages of the classic childhood novel, “The Swiss Family Robinson.” Enjoy the beauty of the lush surroundings and a private getaway with plenty of opportunities for relaxation and outdoor activities. Modern amenities like a mini fridge and microwave and accessories like hammocks, swings and horseshoes are fun perks. The houses accommodate families of 4 to 7 people and range from $179-$200 a night.

RA’S EUFAULA TREEHOUSE TREESORT

Sell. Buy. Repeat. SELL THE TOYS, CLOTHES AND EQUIPMENT YOUR KIDS HAVE OUTGROWN FOR CASH TODAY. SAVE ON THE BRANDS YOU TRUST WITH OUR EVERYDAY LOW PRICES!

Join the Oklahoma History Center for

Okietales, a storytelling & craft time for children ages five to nine, from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. each Wednesday in June and July, except July 3.

Listen to a story about Oklahoma and make a related craft. $2 for members & $4 for general public

13801 N. PENNSYLVANIA AVE N. OKLAHOMA CITY, OK 73134 405-286-3114 | ONCEUPONACHILDOKCNORTH.COM

For more information contact the Oklahoma History Center Education Department at education@okhistory.org or call Carrie Fox at 405-522-0791.

www.okhistory.org 800 Nazih Zuhdi Dr./OKC METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

41


SUMMER CAMPS RESTAURANTS & SHOPPING

REGISTRATION FOR SUMMER CAMPS IS OPEN! LOCK IN TODAY okcthunder.com/youthbasketball

Got a tight schedule? Need a certain night?

NOW ENROLLING for 2019-2020 classes.

Horse Camps Camp Cadence, Since 2007

Full Day Camps $395/week

Half Day Camps $250/week

June 3 - June 7 June 10 - June 14 June 17 - June 21 June 24 - June 28 July 8 - July 12 July 15 - July 19 July 22 - July 26 July 29 - Aug. 2

May 27 - May 31 June 3 - June 7 June 10 - June 14 June 17 - June 21 June 24 - June 28 July 8 - July 12 July 15 - July 19 July 22 - July 26 July 29 - Aug. 2 Aug 5 - Aug 9

Overnight Camps Girls Only $995/week July 7 - July 13

Classes for ages 2 and up

Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Hip Hop

CADENCE EQUESTRIAN

11122 N Rockwell Ave Ste A-11 OKC

Enroll online at: www.cadenceequestrian.com

admin@oklahomacitydancestudio.com

(405) 348-7469

405-721-8807

42 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

At Territorial Fun Day Camp, ages 6-11 will have fun exploring Oklahoma history through games, crafts and other activities.

June 17-21, 9am to 3pm $175 (before/after care available for extra fee; siblings discount available)

ENROLL TODAY 405-235-4058 mgregg@harnhomestead.com 1721 N. Lincoln Blvd, Oklahoma City

www.harnhomestead.com


SUMMER CAMPS

#1 RANKED CHEERLEADING & TUMBLING GYM IN OKLAHOMA

• 3 x USASF World Champs! • 3 x Summit Champs!

MAY 23– AUGUST 1 FOR NEW STUDENTS

$100

1ST MONTH OF CLASSES FREE UNIFORM NO ACTIVATION FEE 405.341.1016

• 25 x NCA National Champs!

Family Favorites

• 24 x National and over 100 x State PowerTumbing Champs! CLASSES & TEAMS - AGE 4 & UP ALL LEVELS Competitive & Non-Competitive Cheer & Tumbling Birthday Parties • Cheer and Tumble Clinics & Camps Edmond 405-775-9491 • Muskogee 918- 913-7833 Norman 405- 573-9974 • Tulsa 918-622-58673

JUNE 17-21 JULY 22-26

JULY 8 -1 2 // 9 AM-3P M Crossings Community Church

12:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. DRAGONKIMSTKD.COM

I AM A GIRL SCOUT Cathy Ferguson competed in the 1964 Olympic Games in Japan. She received a Gold Medal. She was inducted into the international swimming hall of fame as an “Honor Swimmer” in 1978. Take the lead and forge your own path with Girl Scouts Western Oklahoma!

GSWESTOK.ORG/JOIN

Kids who have completed 2nd-6th grade are invited to perform in the musical Not Your Average Joe: The Story of Joseph with a 50s Twist, set in the cool times of leather jackets and poodle skirts. Camp includes interactive classes in:

Vocals Drama Dance

Set Design Costume Design Bible

PERFORMANCE: Friday, July 12 // 6PM Cost: $175

GET DETAILS & REGISTER AT CROSSINGS.CHURCH/AFAC-SUMMER

METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

43


FUN RESTAURANTS &FAMILY SHOPPING

y t i C e g Dod

L L A B T N I A

P

Birthday Parties All-Weather Building

of OKC 405-373-3745

Perfect for Ages 6 & Up! Open Year Round Groups & Walk-ons Welcome!

OKCPaintball.com 16425 NW 150th, Piedmont

Join us for Toddler Story and Craft Time Wednesdays and Thursdays at 11am. Free with admission.

Open Paint & Play All Day Indoor Playground Paint & Take Ceramics Clay Workshops Grown-ups Paint Nights

405-340-PLUG • www.unpluggits.com

New MarkDowns! Carousel Consignment

SHOPPING

Furniture Just as Nice the Second Time Around

2201 W. Edmond Rd. (405) 285-1250

44 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019


RESTAURANTSRESTAURANT & SHOPPING

PARTY GUIDE

IT’S COOL TO

PARTY AT THE POOL! Two hours of private access to Goldfish Swim School Invitations & envelopes Balloons, tropical decorations & centerpieces

(405) 693-1937 fo reve raae r p a r r e s . co m

Cupcakes & beverages for the children

EDMOND | 405.696.7500

SPECIAL NEEDS

www.goldfishswimschool.com

421 NW 10th • 405.609.3302 dustbowlok.com METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019

45


SUMMER IS COMING

CATCH

Wave THE

ISAAC TRIES ARCHERY AT THE CHUCK WAGON FESTIVAL IN 2018.

National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum’s

Chuck Wagon Festival Editor’s note: The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum’s Chuck Wagon Festival will be held this year on Memorial Day Weekend, May 25 and 26, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free for kids 12 and under. Kid Reviewer: Isaac Roldán, age 7

All Ages & Abilities Proven Curriculum 27+ Years in the Making Small Class Sizes  Splash-Worthy 90° Pool Saving Lives Since 1991

! y a d o t p u n g i S OKLAHOMA CITY

8405 N. Rockwell Ave., Ste. 1-4 Oklahoma City, OK 73132

405-721-1871

www.aqua-tots.com

What made the experience stand out? I loved visiting all the cowboy activity areas! We got to make rope, eat cornbread, try sarsparilla in the ghost town saloon and try archery. I thought we would be there for like an hour but we stayed all day long. What was the best part? It was an amazing festival. The best part was meeting the author of “Hank the Cowdog,” John Erickson. He signed my book! My Mom read those books when she was a little girl and we got to hear him talk about how he came up with the idea for the books and he sang songs and told us all about Hank. We read the first two books last summer and I just got the third book. Also, archery was another best part because I had never gotten to try it before.

Would this experience be enjoyed by your siblings? Why or why not? Yes, my brothers went with me and none of us felt bored. My younger brother was 3 then and he cried at the end because he wanted to stay. If you could do this again, knowing what you know now, what would you do differently? I would come earlier to eat more of the chuck wagon food! That’s what I’ll do this year. Also, I would wear more comfortable shoes and go try out the archery part immediately. Does anything you learned match up with what you’re doing in school or have done before? Yes, I’ve been to some festivals before but I like that this one has something to go see next all the time. It’s all so different. What do you think you’ll remember most about visiting?

Will other kids like visiting the festival?

I’ll remember the ghost town the most. It’s a place I visit in my mind when I think about the old west in books, like a good place to imagine. What I remember most about last year is how everyone talked to me and let me try things. I just heard the phrase “learn by doing” and it’s like that but everyone’s learning so you don’t feel like you’re the only person who doesn’t know how to do something. I want to learn everything about cowboys, especially where Hank the Cowdog lives.

Yes, kids will remember it all year long. I want to go every year.

Find more Kid Reviews at www. metrofamilymagazine.com/kid-reviews.

What was the worst part? The day was hot! I was tired in the sun but I wanted to keep going to see everything outside. There were so many things to do, it was difficult to choose which ones we should see next.

46 METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / MAY 2019


“SOUTHEASTERN POTTERY” by JOANNA UNDERWOOD CHICKASAW OKA' CHOKMASI in Sulphur, Oklahoma

SUE FISH

LUANNE ARAGON

CHICKASAW

LAGUNA PUEBLO

B E N J A M I N H A R J O J R. ABSENTEE SHAWNEE SEMINOLE

TYRA SHACKLEFORD

KRISTEN DORSEY

JIMMIE HARRISON

CHICKASAW

NAVAJO

CHICKASAW

6TH ANNUAL

ASHLEY WALLACE

CHASE EARLES

CHICKASAW

CADDO

Featuring over 100 premier Native American artists DANIEL WORCESTER CHICKASAW

from around the country. Enjoy fine art, live music, artist talks, food vendors and fun for all ages.

Saturday, May 25 • 10 a.m.-6 p.m. DOWNTOWN SULPHUR, OKLAHOMA • 580-272-5520 • #VisitChickasaw Free parking and shuttle from the Chickasaw Cultural Center!

BILL ANOATUBBY GOVERNOR


Get your game face on.

LEISURE POOL WITH SWIM-UP BAR • 630-FOOT LAZY RIVER • KIDS PLAY & SPLASH AREA EXCLUSIVELY FOR HOTEL GUESTS • BOOK NOW AT ANATOLEPOOL.COM

Profile for MetroFamily Magazine

MetroFamily Magazine May 2019  

MetroFamily Magazine May 2019