MetroFamily Magazine Summer 2020

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s y a D 0 0 1 r e m m u S f o At-home activities + safe statewide adventures for every day of summer

The Chickasaw Nation presents

EXPERIENCE THE OKLAHOMA HALL OF FAME AND GAYLORD-PICKENS MUSEUM IN AN EXPANDED DIGITAL WAY! Oklahoma Hall of Fame Member Themed Activities including books, movies, music, recipes and more! Story Time with Oklahoma Hall of Fame Members! Virtual Tours of Museum Exhibits!

Visit for all of the fun digital activities! Follow us on Social Media to stay up-to-date on Free Family Fun event information!



1400 Classen Drive | Oklahoma City, OK 73106 | 405.235.4458 |

2020 summer

Activities Guide city of edmond parks & recreation




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10 Put Down the Device

8 #okcfamilyfun

12 Get Growing

9 Exploring Oklahoma with Children

Engaging kids in low-tech family fun 5 benefits of community gardens

Readers share favorite moments

Socially distant road trips

100 Days of Summer 16 Fun for every day of the season! 17 Make a shaving cream masterpiece by Oklahoma Hall of Fame

26 Sneak a peek at virtual summer camp by Camp Fire Heart of Oklahoma

18 Practice pop art with graffiti chalk by Oklahoma City Museum of Art

28 Plan your mission to space by Oklahoma History Center

19 Design a bleach art t-shirt by National Cowboy Museum


10 29 Transform into a territorial kid by Harn Homestead

22 Create natural paintbrushes by Oklahoma Contemporary

30 Make a mammal feeder by SKELETONS: Museum of Osteology

23 Camp out in the backyard by Arcadia Lake

32 Bee kind to pollinators by Myriad Gardens

24 Try yummy mummy dogs by Visit Shawnee










Sarah Taylor

Managing Editor Erin Page

Assistant Editor Lindsay Cuomo

Contributing Writers George Lang Debbi Marshall

Art Director Stacy Noakes

Senior Project Manager Kirsten Holder


Dana Price Laura Beam

Events Director Marissa Raglin


here’s a meme floating around social media that keeps catching my attention. No, not the one about Joe Exotic and Carole Baskin. Not the one about 2020 resembling a giant cheese grater disguised as a slide either (though that feels pretty accurate at this point). This meme poses the question of when we get back to “normal,” which parts of our former life we’ll be willing to incorporate into our new every day, knowing what we know now. This pandemic has taught me that my family needs to slow down. We need to be more intentional with the time we have together. Just like yours, my kids’ childhoods are fleeting. Our extra togetherness has not been all happiness and rainbows, but in large part, it’s been time for which I’ve been grateful to better understand and cherish each of my kids for who they are. I’ve also learned we need to better appreciate the world, community and people around us. You can bet that when it’s safe to do so, my crew will be supporting locally-owned stores, restaurants, attractions, businesses and organizations with renewed fervor. In the meantime, we’ll be doing all we can to spread socially distant love. While our summer may look a whole lot different than what we were expecting, I am determined that my family will make the most of it. We’ll be keeping our 100 Days of Summer Guide close to carve out creative

family fun time at home and support metro organizations virtually or in person when appropriate. I hope this issue will give you renewed hope that summertime family fun is NOT canceled! Sending sunshine,

Erin Page Managing Editor

Office Manager Kathy Alberty

Contact us

318 NW 13th St, Ste 101 OKC OK 73103 Phone: 405-601-2081 Fax: 405-445-7509 MetroFamily Magazine is published monthly. Copyright 2020 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

On the Cover The original artwork on the cover is by Bek Barkocy, a metro artist who has painted professionally for two years. All of Barkocy’s work is done using acrylics, and her favorite part of the process is creating the first layer, which she tends to fill with prayer or poetry to set the tone and composition for each piece. If Barkocy isn’t tucked away painting in her warehouse studio downtown, she’s out chasing a sunset or making sure a stranger passing by was never a stranger at all. Follow her on Instagram @prawduct.

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




Off the Pages Socially Distant Destinations If you’re climbing the walls of your own house and ready to safely venture out with your family, we’ve rounded up destinations throughout OKC and the state where you can achieve social distancing. Some options don’t even require you to leave your car! Grab your masks and sense of adventure and hit the road. Find our favorite destinations at Not ready to jump back into the community just yet but still craving a change of scenery? Check out virtual vacations at

Summer Fun Guide Summer fun is NOT canceled! Our annual Summer Fun Guide is full of ideas for your family this season, including summer reading programs, hiking excursions, ideas to celebrate Independence Day, readers’ favorite summertime treats, Oklahoma’s best beaches, drive-in theaters, spots to stargaze, fun fishing holes and much more. Find our guide (which is constantly being updated) plus many more resources at


Introducing Raising OKC Kids

Raising OKC Kids is MetroFamily’s new video podcast featuring conversations with local experts and parents, helping families connect, learn from each other and grow community. Visit raising-okc-kids for chats on topics like family mental health, parenting in a pandemic and unemployment. Hear from a local pediatrician what parents need to know about keeping kids safe this summer. Plus, learn about the new trend of virtual summer camps and meet local kid entrepreneurs with big ideas and even bigger hearts.

Get Fired Up Healthy BBQ


Want to be healthier? You don’t have to skimp on family traditions. Test out new recipes and tweak old favorites with healthier ingredients. Head to for FREE recipes like these.






#OKCFamilyFun B


Adalyn refused to let corona ruin her special day! Chelsi Diles


e love seeing how your family has fun, even during a pandemic. Use the tag #OKCFamilyFun for a chance to be featured in an upcoming issue.

Check out for tips, encouragement, affirmation and humor from local parents.

“Now don’t forget trucks: digging is good.� @wildernedge

I love my city. #scissortailpark @mommodeokc

Mothering, just like life, is about balance. I’ve had to learn during the process of becoming a mother that it is OK to ask for help. @jillianblair08 Hope you got some fresh air today ‌ in between the dense fog, rain and hail! @camoandchaos


#OKCFamilyFun is sponsored by Crestone Ridge.

(405) 820-6851


Convenient living at its finest! • Yukon schools • Close to the Kilpatrick Turnpike • Clubhouse with pool • Playground • Beautiful custom homes

Summer vacation ideas E F SA Oklahoma adventures with social distancing built in

While some of our typical summertime activities and vacations aren’t viable this year, Oklahoma has plenty of wide-open spaces for families to enjoy while safely practicing social distancing. Some don’t even require you to leave your car! Check out these inspiring ideas for safe Oklahoma road trips.

Cast a line. Reconnect with nature and each other at a local fishing hole.

Head for a hike.

Oklahoma’s not all flat prairie! Enjoy our diverse terrain at some of our favorite hiking destinations, including spectacular views and wonderful waterfalls.

Gaze at the stars. Check out our how-tos to enjoy the night sky, plus 5 remote locations perfect for stargazing.

Escape the heat. Explore our state’s vast array of “beaches” or expend some energy by cruising in a canoe, kayak or paddle board.

Tour Route 66. Many of Oklahoma’s famous roadside oddities, like the Catoosa blue whale and Arcadia’s round barn, can be enjoyed from the comfort of your car.

Find more on these road trip ideas and several others at Editor’s note: Due to COVID-19, attractions around the state have adjusted or closed some of their amenities. Call ahead to verify availability. Please consider your safety and that of others by adhering to state and city recommendations, social distancing and not traveling when sick. METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / SUMMER 2020





Family road trips can come down to a single dynamic: Mom or Dad driving the SUV while everyone else stares at their phones. That is a typical lament from parents concerned that the intrusion of technology has resulted in a total breakdown of familial communication — one that was created, oddly enough, by communication devices. But in this time of COVID-19 self-quarantine and social distancing, screens have emerged as an important resource for staying in touch with the outside world. Parents and children alike are spending large swaths of time on Zoom and other group communication tools for both work and school, and in the early weeks of the outbreak, TV viewing for channels like Disney Channel and Cartoon Network rose 43 percent and 58 percent, respectively, according to digital news site Digiday. As The New York Times reported last month, this is a time and circumstance for more nuanced views of screen time and how it is used. There are great ways to spend time with devices, but the only way to get a child to temporarily part ways with Fortnite, Minecraft or YouTube videos of epic fails is to offer something better. My son Sam is 15 years old, and one of his favorite places to travel in Oklahoma is the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge, a 59,000-acre stretch of craggy mountain trails, free-ranging bison, prairie dog towns and terrible cell phone service. Generally, Sam




uses more discretion in how he spends time with his phone than the average teenager, but once we pass the entrance to Mount Scott on the edge of Medicine Park, his phone might as well be a brick, and he does not care whatsoever. Connectivity is mostly out of the equation except at high altitudes. Taking the Quanah Parker Trail should not require an incentive for anyone who sees the rocky summit in the distance, but in case of recalcitrant teens, just let them know that three bars of 4G service await them at the top. Unlike his mother and father, Sam likes to plan things — like, everything. He is not alone: being dragged along on a sojourn that was not their idea is a major eye-roll inducer for teens. While it is generally good parenting to make future plans a discussion rather than an order, this is especially true with vacations. On a recent trip to Austin, Sam planned a coffee shop tour of the city with stops at the ultra-sleek Merit Coffee, Fleet and Radio Coffee and Beer, where more than one kind of brew is served. The only time he was on his phone was to point us to our next stop for delicious liquid jitters. It should be noted that some of these activities are not on the table during social distancing. Not every coffee shop is open or offering curbside service, and there are numerous reports of trails being clogged with city dwellers desperate to escape their houses and finding that hiking is not always a social distancing-friendly two-way street. Depending on children’s ages, a camping trip in the backyard can have the desired effect of reducing screen time, and a store-bought or homemade fire pit can make the experience even campier. Order some hot dogs delivered from a favorite shopping service and GEORGE’S SON SAM AND WIFE LAURA ENJOY THE OUTDOORS.


“Being dragged along on a sojourn that was not their idea is a major eye-roll inducer for teens.”


roast them over the fire, and since a lot of teenagers are passive pyromaniacs or just pyro-curious, this will keep their focus on a natural light rather than the cold blue one emanating from their phones. But remember, not all screen time is time wasted. Sam is enormously interested in animals, and enjoyed the Oklahoma City Zoo’s OKC Zoo@Two daily video conferences featuring staff introducing different zoo residents and an online library of past programs, and there are many aquariums and other zoos providing wild experiences at safe distances.

This summer, giving kids command over their version of family fun, with or without screens, can provide them a coveted bit of control and you some oft-elusive clout. George Lang has worked in journalism for 25 years and has written or edited for The Oklahoman, Oklahoma Gazette and other area publications. He currently teaches at ACM@UCO and hosts “Spy 101” on KOSU/The Spy. He and his wife Laura, chief executive officer at Thrive, Inc., and their son Sam live, work and school in Oklahoma City. CLICK FOR MOBILE-FRIENDLY VERSION






Five reasons to introduce your child to community gardening If our children are our future, how can we ensure they are passionate about protecting and multiplying our food sources? Educators agree engaging children in gardening reaps both physical and emotional benefits. If you don’t see yourself as a backyard gardener, how can you introduce your children to the importance and joy of growing their own food? A school or community garden can be your answer to cultivating these five rewards. CLICK FOR MOBILE-FRIENDLY VERSION



Children who learn about healthy food are inspired to make more nutritious food choices. Studies demonstrate a link between exposure to gardening and vegetable consumption by children, according to the International Junior Master Gardener Program. Master gardener Ceci Leonard, who developed and leads the Oklahoma County Extension Junior Master Gardener program at nine metro schools says: “If they plant it, they’ll eat it.” Even children who don’t typically like vegetables may become curious enough to try a carrot or some lettuce with a little ranch dressing. Community gardens with access to free, fresh food can be life-sustaining for children with limited family resources. Restore OKC’s Restore Farms Director Ann Miller established the nonprofit organization’s partnership with two northeast Oklahoma City elementary schools, Thelma Parks and Martin Luther King, to develop classroom gardens. Miller says children are often surprised

to learn that vegetables don’t originate at the grocery store. Teachers knew the school gardens provided value when they encountered two students fighting over recently-harvested radishes.



Gardens provide a refreshing change of pace from classroom learning.

Children are typically most engaged through hands-on learning, and students who struggle academically may excel in an outdoor, interactive classroom. Joel Bramhall, education director at Myriad Botanical Gardens, describes the unique partnership between John Rex Charter School and the Myriad as the only one of its kind anywhere—an urban school in a botanic garden. Prior to the traditional school year being cut short, as Garden Groundbreakers, John Rex students were involved in experiential enrichment with a weekly gardening curriculum including plant structure and processes, environmental stewardship and healthy eating during their instructional day. Bramhall recalls a student remarking, “Some



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1700 Northeast 63rd Street Oklahoma City, OK 73111

students learn about nature from textbooks, but here at the gardens, we have it around us every day.” Miller, who’s also a horticulturalist and educator, asserts kids are the best gardeners. Miller describes the delight children experience when they plant seeds and first notice the root structures developing as simply magical. Amy Young, executive director of SixTwelve, a Paseo Arts District community education center for all ages, is so convinced of the importance of community gardens that she has tailored her career to promote growing and preparing food with children. SixTwelve’s pre-K and after-school programs for ages 6 to 17 include teaching gardens, immersing kids in nature “from seed to fork” with a goal of creativity and sustainability. Children are involved in the entire process of growing food, preparing their harvest and eating the fruits of their labors. SixTwelve’s director of permaculture Paul Mays urges parents to involve children in gardening and cooking from an early age, and above all else, to just get outside!


Community gardens promote relationships.

Community gardening is a team sport. According to the International Junior Master Gardener Program, studies show that fifth, sixth and seventh grade students developed better interpersonal relationship skills after participating in a school or community garden program. Earlier this year, middle school students at John Rex planted a pizza garden with several OKC Thunder players. “This was one of the most fun experiences we’ve ever had here at the gardens,” said Bramhall. “It’s not very often that you have professional basketball players coming in to work with your students, especially when it’s nature-based learning.” Working together toward a common goal provides a sense of accomplishment through collaboration. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic and expected to launch again this fall, adults and children are welcome volunteers in SixTwelve’s community garden on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to noon. In exchange, volunteers may take home freshly-

harvested garden produce and eggs from the henhouse. An unexpected bonus occurs in making a new friend or two. Miller believes children benefit most from being involved in an organization with adults who know which plants will likely result in success. Restore Farms, which is helping solve the nutrition needs of the surrounding food desert by offering fresh, free vegetables from their gardens, provides volunteer opportunities for adults and children on Friday mornings and the second Saturday of each month. To accommodate for social distancing while still serving neighbors, Restore OKC is currently limiting the number of volunteers and accepting only one family at a time to garden at partner schools.


Community gardens can spark career interests.

We typically expose children to traditional career choices — doctor, lawyer, teacher. But introducing children to horticulture and agriculture can introduce a new myriad of career options. Miller approaches her role at Restore Farms with the goal of assisting students in finding their passions.

Supporting Change– For the Better Ten-year-old Brixton Ison volunteers every Friday night at Celebrate Recovery Memorial Road Church of Christ. Whether setting a dining table, distributing informational material, or preparing a dish for a family-friendly dinner, his passion for helping others is a prime example of why we’re inspired by kids like Brixton. At Kimray, our mission is to make a difference in the lives of those we serve. Brixton exemplifies this by living out that mission in the service he provides to his community. And that’s The Kimray Way.


Last fall Restore Farms launched a paid, part-time student internship program for seventh through 12th graders. Students, chosen primarily from the surrounding neighborhoods, are sometimes at-risk for dropping out of school to help support their families. Interns work year-round, learning through hands-on activities about all aspects of gardening at the farm while receiving a diverse education in running a successful business. Interns who stay with the program through high school are offered college scholarships through Langston University.


Community gardens promote sustainability.

Sustainability is the concept of considering our impact on the environment for our generation and generations to come. Organic gardening is gardening without synthetic fertilizers or pesticides with the overall goal of maintaining a healthy ecosystem. Establishing a community or backyard garden ensures healthy local food choices. Children exposed to community gardens learn from experienced gardeners how composting,


water conservation and other smart gardening practices can have a positive environmental impact. And then, many of these same practices can be adopted at home. Maintaining and preserving our precious natural resources is a goal every child can embrace. Community gardens abound in the Oklahoma City metro, ideal for your family to reap these rewards, enjoy fresh air and make new friends. Learn more about the current policies, programming and

It’s not just what they know. It’s who they become.

volunteer opportunities through Restore OKC at, Myriad Gardens at and SixTwelve at Editor’s note: This is the second in a threepart series exploring the world of gardening with children. Debbi Marshall is a master gardener, retired U.S. probation officer and Grammie to three rambunctious, pint-sized gardeners.

Primrose School of Edmond 405.285.6787 Primrose School of Southwest Oklahoma City 405.793.6000

Call for a tour. Each Primrose school is a privately owned and operated franchise. Primrose Schools is a registered trademark of Primrose School Franchising SPE, LLC. ©2020 Primrose School Franchising SPE, LLC. All rights reserved.





Many of us got a jumpstart on summer this year, with kids out of school early due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This season will look a bit different than the summertime days of years past, but there’s still plenty of family fun to be found. Whether you’re seeking at-home activities or safe adventures away from home, find something for everyone with these 100 ideas for summer fun! BY LINDSAY CUOMO, MARISSA RAGLIN & ERIN PAGE. PHOTOS PROVIDED.

1. Host a family game night with homemade prizes for the winner. Find reader-recommended family games at 2. Make a crown or bracelet with items found in your backyard. 3. Set up a canned food drive on your front porch and invite friends and family to make donations. Donate items collected to your local food bank or pantry. 4. Check out an audiobook from for your family to enjoy together. 5. Pick summer produce at a local farm, many operating by appointment. Find our favorites at 6. Have a cartwheel contest. 7. Take a stroll in OKC’s new Scissortail Park. Sail across the lake in a pedal boat and check out the unique play equipment and water features, scheduled to reopen June 1. 8. Research famous portrait artists, then recreate your favorite painting by dressing up like the subject! 9. Paint with vegetables and fruits. Simply cut, dip and paint to see what kinds of patterns you can create. Find more crafts with unexpected


materials at 10. Make an obstacle course in your backyard. 11. Until we can see the giant dinosaurs at the Sam Noble Museum in person again, check out interactive STEM activities, coloring pages and educational videos at stemactivities. 12. Take a socially distant trip to John’s Farms in Fairview where you can enjoy a self-guided tour of the working ranch and wide-open spaces. Find out more at

13. Get growing by starting a garden. Find tips at metrofamilymagazine. com/teaching-kids-to-garden. 14. Write a short play and assign each family member a part (or several parts!) to act out. 15. Take a nature walk. Find an outdoor scavenger hunt of things to spot at 16. Have each kid create a recipe, or one kid create multiple recipes, and have other family members choose their favorite.


Editor’s note: While this list is up-to-date as of publication, attractions and venues may have made changes due to COVID-19 and/or city and state regulations. Double check with all attractions and venues before visiting.

Make a masterpiece with shaving cream!

This fun activity makes everyone feel like an accomplished artist, kids and adults alike! Materials: • Shaving cream (avoid gels) • Food coloring • Paper (light-colored construction paper or card stock) • Paper towels • Cookie sheet or other flat, nonporous washable surface, covered with aluminum foil (optional) • Fork or spoon • Spatulas • Apron or play clothes you don’t mind getting messy! • Hand wipes to remove any food coloring on the skin Instructions: 1. Cover your work surface with a plastic or paper covering, then cut the paper into 8.5 inches x 5.5 inches (half sheets). 2. Squirt a generous amount of shaving cream on the foil-covered cookie sheet. 3. Using a silicone spatula, spread the shaving cream out until it is flat, about one inch thick, and slightly larger than the size of the paper.

4. Lightly drop food coloring on top of the shaving cream. Limiting your design to two to three colors produces the best results. 5. Lightly drag the fork or spoon through the shaving cream and color, creating patterns. 6. Press the paper lightly on top of the shaving cream mixture, rubbing the paper gently to ensure good contact with the surface of the shaving cream. 7. Remove the paper. Lay on top of a clean, covered work surface. 8. Scrape the shaving cream off with a plastic spatula, wiping the spatula each time with a paper towel. The shaving cream is removed but the color remains, creating amazing artwork! Lay it flat to dry. Until it’s time to enjoy the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in person again, visit digitally at for more fun activities for the whole family and to learn more about Oklahoma’s greatest asset, our people. CLICK FOR MOBILE-FRIENDLY VERSION



18. Craft a homemade bird feeder, then categorize and count the birds you see visit it. 19. Experience the heyday of Oklahoma cattle drives from home! Watch weekly lessons about the animals and people that called the trail home, enjoy story time and meet artists showcasing pieces about the American West from Duncan’s Chisholm Trail Heritage Center at 20. Build a fort and have a movie night. Find MetroFamily favorite movies from each decade at 21. Take a virtual vacation to a destination such as Niagara Falls. Find our recs at 22. Draw your toys outside using the shadow technique.


Create graffiti chalk art with messages of hope on your sidewalk or driveway, then make plans to visit OKCMOA’s upcoming exhibit POP Power, featuring artist Keith Haring, whose signature style is inspired by graffiti art. • Learn more about artist Haring at • Then get inspired by Haring’s simple solution to share his art with others! Grab your sidewalk chalk and create inspiring messages or drawings in front of a neighbor’s home. Or chalk on your own driveway or sidewalk so others can enjoy when out for a walk. Share using #OKCMOAfromhome and #OKCFamilyFun! • Pop art is credited with making art feel more accessible to mass audiences because it embraces humor, celebrity and commerce. Learn more about the art form and find examples at visit/events/poppower. CLICK FOR MOBILE-FRIENDLY VERSION


POP Power will be on view at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art from June 6 to Sept. 13. Timed ticketing for the exhibit will limit the number of people in the galleries at one time to promote social distancing.

24. Take a twilight family walk with glow sticks. 25. Get your kid-preneur juices flowing by starting your own business. Check out advice from other kid business owners at 26. Talk like a pirate all day. 27. Head west to El Reno to enjoy a famous fried onion burger. The burgers originated during the depression in the 1920s as a way to stretch expensive meat by adding onions. 28. Then check out the wide-open spaces of historic Fort Reno, which is currently taking appointments to visit the Visitor’s Center and Museum. 29. Check out a local disc golf course. Find metro favorites at 30. Visit a local farmer’s market and plan a meal involving your finds. Find our metro favorites with social distancing guidelines in place at metrofamilymagazine. com/farmers-markets-in-the-metro-area. 31. Go fishing.


Make a bleach art t-shirt!

Decorate a t-shirt using bleach and stencils with images of your choosing, perhaps stars and stripes for the Fourth of July. The folks at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum are kind of partial to Western imagery! Materials: • T-shirt (darker colors work best) or any other piece of cotton clothing such as a bandanna • Stencils and contact paper to trace and cut out designs that can be stuck to the t-shirt. Or use stickers and tape. Whatever you use, it’s important that the bleach water won’t soak through the material and that the material sticks to the fabric so that the bleach spray doesn’t bleed around the edges. • Spray bottle • Bleach (Kids should ask for adult assistance!) Instructions: 1. Choose your designs. Print, cut them out and trace them onto contact paper, or use stickers or tape to create a design. Be creative! 2. Stick your designs to the t-shirt.

3. Lay the t-shirt flat and place newspaper, plastic bags or cardboard inside so the bleach spray doesn’t bleed through to the other side of the shirt. 4. Mix the bleach in a ratio of 1 part water to 2 parts bleach in the spray bottle. (We did 1/8-cup water and 1/4-cup bleach and had plenty left over after one t-shirt and one bandanna.) 5. Lay the t-shirt in the sun in a wellventilated area. Spray lightly across the t-shirt; don’t saturate the fabric. Repeat light sprays until you reach the desired lightness. Let dry between applications to let the sun do its thing. Caution: be aware of how the wind is blowing or you may end up bleaching what you are wearing as well! 6. When the t-shirt is completely dry, remove the stencils and marvel at your creation! The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is open for summer fun! Visit for the latest details, including the grand opening of the new Liichokoshkomo’, featuring hands-on outdoor play for kids and families. CLICK FOR MOBILE-FRIENDLY VERSION



33. Write letters or draw pictures to mail to grandparents or relatives. 34. Download a kid-friendly podcast or check out a new YouTube channel. Find our kid recs at 35. Explore the grounds of the Myriad Botanical Gardens and count how many different plant species you can identify (look for the helpful labels!) 36. While at the Myriad, enjoy more free fun playing in the Children’s Garden and Thunder Fountain, both scheduled to reopen June 1. 37. Stir up summer science fun with a variety of simple experiments at metrofamilymagazine. com/category/simple-science. 38. Build a little library and stock it with books to share with friends and neighbors. 39. Ride bikes as a family. 40. Hunt for dinosaur tracks near Black Mesa State Park.



Summer Camps! Multiple weekly camps for ages 4-16 held June-August. $95 for half-day camp; $150 for all day

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Enjoy fishing, boating, camping, swimming, picnicking and hiking trails now.

Need to pick up after 6 p.m.? We can help! • After-school and summer programs for school age kids • Caring for infants through 12 years • 3-star nationally accredited program • Open 24 hours and Saturday • Accept military, tribal, DHS & drop-in care • Serving Oklahoma City families for over 35 years

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405.721.1830 405.216.7470

We Have fun, You should too.

Great news... summer isn't canceled! And MetroFamily helps you find all the summer fun!

Go to for our always-updated summer camp directory, calendar of events, road trip ideas & more.



Ha f at La

41. Experience Stillwater’s National Wrestling Hall of Fame virtually by watching videos of the sport’s best at NWHOF/videos. 42. Create your own Independence Day parade! Decorate your bike, scooter or wagon and take a spin around your neighborhood. 43. Take a drive through the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve, located near Pawhuska, to check out the majestic bison herd and variety of birds and other wildlife that call the preserve home. 44. Pack a picnic to enjoy at your favorite local park. 45. Go geocaching. 46. Celebrate the longest day of the year, the Summer Solstice, on June 20 by soaking up some sunshine. Don’t forget your sunscreen! 47. Dig for hourglass selenite crystals at Great Salt Plains State Park, the only place in the world the crystals can be found.


Use grass, leaves, sticks and a bit of yarn to create your own natural paintbrushes with this #AtHomeArt project. Materials: • • • • •

Leaves, grass or even weeds Yarn, tape or string Sticks Paper CLICK FOR MOBILE-FRIENDLY VERSION Paint

Instructions: 1. Go outside and look for grass or leaves you can use as heads of paintbrushes. Get curious! Think about different marks that can be made by using different types of leaves. 2. Find some small sticks you can use as your brush handles. 3. Place your leaves at the end of one of your sticks. Make sure to overlap the leaves on the sticks. 4. Take your yarn and tie it around the leaves and stick. Tightly wrap the yarn around the stick and leaves to secure them together. 5. Once you’ve wrapped the yarn securely, tie off the yarn and cut off the excess.


6. Wave your brush in the air to ensure nothing falls apart. If something is loose, repeat the two previous steps. 7. Dip your new brush in some paint and get started!

Find more #AtHomeArt projects at tag/at-home-art. And look for the opening of the beautiful new Oklahoma Contemporary building in the near future!


49. Float the waters of the Illinois River near Tahlequah. Find our tips to float with kids at

Host a backyard camp-out play date, without all the fuss!

With a few simple supplies, your family can have an epic adventure right in your own backyard until it’s time to come back out to Arcadia Lake in Edmond. Craft a one-tree or two-tree tent by using a tarp or blanket, ropes and tent pegs or a sturdy stick. Then, whip up some outdoor fireless s’mores with this kid-friendly recipe that uses the sun as a heat source!

50. Paint a picture on your sidewalk with water and paint brushes. Snap a photo. When it disappears, create another!

To learn more about camping and other activities available at Arcadia Lake, visit

Ingredients: • Graham crackers • Chocolate bars • Marshmallows Instructions: 1. Take half of a graham cracker and stack a section of chocolate on top. 2. Add two marshmallows and top with the remaining half of the graham cracker. 3. Wrap your creation in foil and place in a sunny spot. Depending on the temperatures outside, it may take up to 30 minutes to melt. Once its ooey and gooey to your liking, enjoy! CLICK FOR MOBILE-FRIENDLY VERSION



52. Enjoy an urban adventure at a local futsal, basketball, bocce ball or bike park. Check for up-to-date information on when these parks will reopen in our guide at metrofamilymagazine. com/okc-outdoor-urban-adventure-guide. 53. Create your own art show! Choose one medium or several to make your artwork, label each piece with a title and invite your family members to view them. Snack serving optional! 54. Research how Ferris wheels use physics and centripetal force to work, then head to the Wheeler District for a ride on the Wheeler Ferris Wheel, and get an iconic selfie with the giant OKC letters, once reopened. 55. Host a family talent show. 56. Plan a hike with the payoff of a spectacular view. Check out five fabulous Oklahoma hikes featuring waterfalls at 57. Try a new twist on water balloon fights by making sponge bombs. Find out how at slide-into-summer-fun. 58. Spend time stargazing. Get tips from Science Museum Oklahoma’s #SMOAtHome series at ScienceMuseumOk.


Make yummy mummy dogs!

Did you know Shawnee is home to Oklahoma’s only mummy? Until can come visit, get the family together to make these cute and tasty mummy dogs!


Ingredients: • 8 hot dogs • One can of refrigerated crescent rolls • Candy eyes (optional) Directions: 1. Unroll the crescent roll dough and separate into 4 rectangles. Press perforations on the rectangles to seal. 2. With a knife or kitchen scissors, cut each rectangle length-wise into 10 pieces so you have 40 total strips of dough. 3. Wrap 4 strips of dough around each hot dog to look like bandages, making sure to leave room at the top for the “face.” 4. Place on a cookie sheet and bake in the oven according to the crescent roll package instructions. 5. Allow to cool slightly and make “eyes” out of candy eyes, peppercorns or dabs of Ketchup, barbecue sauce or mustard. Then enjoy!


Perfect for a summer staycation or day trip, Shawnee is just 45 minutes from downtown OKC and full of shopping, restaurants and family fun, including the Mabee-Gerrer Museum of Art (where you’ll see that mummy!), Citizen Potawatomi Nation Cultural Heritage Center, Santa Fe Depot & Pottawatomie County Museum, plus much more. Plan your adventure at

Coming this fall! A new permanent exhibit,

"Launch to Landing”

Oklahomans in Space

Now with 3 locations to serve you! Call (405) 840-1686 to schedule an evaluation!

Thank you for voting us Best Special Needs Therapy Service Provider! In 2002, John Bennett Herrington became the first enrolled member of a Native American tribe to fly in space. Herrington was selected as a Mission Specialist for STS-113, the sixteenth Space Shuttle mission to the International Space Station.

(405) 522-0765

800 Nazih Zuhdi Dr./OKC

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

Edmond - 14715 Bristol Park Blvd. OKC - 5701 SE 74th St. Yukon - 1445 Health Center Pkwy





60. Experience Oklahoma of the past in interactive school, bank, grocery store and cabin vignettes at the Edmond Historical Society & Museum, scheduled to reopen in June. 61. Order caterpillars online and follow the instructions to watch them turn into butterflies. 62. Create an adventure box around a subject you’d like to learn more about. Find our tips to get started at 63. Take part in a local virtual story time program until they can be held in person again. Find our readers’ favorites at story-times-in-the-okc-metro. 64. Run through the sprinklers. 65. Make bubble art. Find tips at metrofamilymagazine. com/slide-into-summer-fun. 66. Make a rocket fueled by water and dish soap to fuel your STEAM learning until Science Museum Oklahoma reopens later this summer. Check out all the #SMOatHome experiments, story times and tutorials at


Craft a beautiful bouquet out of coffee filters!

Materials: • • • • • •

Coffee filters (1-4 per flower) Spray bottle Water Chenille stems Markers Wax paper

Instructions: 1. Protect your work surface with wax paper. The marker will soak through the paper layers so it’s important to protect the surface from stains. Lay the coffee filters flat onto the wax paper. 2. Now comes the fun part! Use markers to color all over the coffee filters. 3. Next, spray the filters with your spray bottle of water. You only need about 5 good sprays. When the filters get wet, the marker colors will travel across the filter, creating a kaleidoscope of color. 4. Set the whole sheet of wax paper aside while you wait for them to dry. The colors will continue to bleed as they sit. Be mindful that the color may bleed a bit through the wax paper, and complimentary colors (such as orange and purple) will bleed to make brown.





5. After the coffee filters have dried, you are ready to assemble. Older youth can probably handle this on their own, but family members may want to help younger children. To make your flower, either use one filter or stack two, three or four on top of each other to make a fuller flower. 6. Fold the filter(s) in half. Fold in half again. 7. Now create a zig-zag by folding the top section of your coffee filters and fold it backward onto itself. Then flip the filters over and repeat for the other quarter section. Use a chenille stem to tightly wind around the point of your folded coffee filters. Be sure to cinch it tightly so it holds. Gently separate the folded pieces from one another, and then you’re done! Check out how you can attend VIRTUAL summer camp, with weekly opportunities offered by Camp Fire starting June 1. Through live group chats and Camp-InA-Box full of supplies and instructions, campers will participate in online adventures full of songs, games, activities and STEAM lessons. Visit campdakani. org for more information.

68. Take a free tour of public art around the metro. Find our favorites at metrofamilymagazine. com/must-see-muralsin-okc. 69. Have a bubble blowing contest. 70. Create a compost pile or bin in your backyard. 71. Take a day to plan random acts of kindness as a family. 72. Learn about the benefits of ladybugs, then purchase some to set free in your own yard. 73. Pick up a meal from your favorite locally-owned restaurant to enjoy al fresco.

STAY SAFE Oklahoma!

We hope to see you soon!

- 18 Hole Golf Course - Disc Golf - Scenic Ft. Reno - Historic Downtown

Only a short drive west from the metro. Close to you, far from ordinary!



74. Learn to roller skate. 75. Say hi to your favorite OKC Zoo animals on the Outdoor Safari Walk, a socially distant, one-way trail through zoo. 76. Rent a kayak or paddle board through RIVERSPORT in the Boathouse District downtown, on Lake Overholser or Lake Hefner. 77. Then, fly high on the SandRidge Trail and Sky Zip, rush the rapids and (NEW this summer!) surf the waves at RIVERSPORT Adventures. Most activities are scheduled to open in June, but check for the latest details. 78. Make homemade ice cream.


Plan your mission to space in preparation for the Oklahoma History Center’s From Launch to Landing: Oklahomans in Space exhibit, coming this summer. • Make a list of what you’ll need to take to space with you. What will you need to survive and what will you need to keep you busy? Visit kids/space5.php to see typical items astronauts take into space. • Visit to learn about famous Oklahoma astronauts. • Choose your favorite Oklahoma astronaut and research where they are from in Oklahoma, what mission(s) they went on and your favorite interesting fact about them. Draw a picture and, if OK with your parents, tag @okhistorycenter on Facebook so the Oklahoma History Center can see what you came up with! • Learn more about what you’ll see in Launch to Landing, including the Apollo command module, plus many other galleries at the Oklahoma History Center at historycenter/atour.



Find more Oklahoma History at Home activities at home. CLICK FOR MOBILE-FRIENDLY VERSION

80. Take a road trip to Sulphur to hike the trails at the Chickasaw National Recreation Center. Stop by Bedre Fine Chocolate to watch sweet treats being made. 81. Grab a decorate-your-own tasty confections kit from a local bakery like Katiebugs Sips & Sweets. 82. Take a trip back in time to a metro drive-in theater. Check out local favorites at metrofamilymagazine. com/6-drive-in-movietheaters-in-oklahoma. 83. Climb a tree. 84. Research Oklahoma’s state bird, the Scissor-tailed Flycatcher, then make a hanging mobile. Find instructions at


Transform into a territorial Oklahoma kid!


What was life like when Oklahoma City was getting established in the 1890s? Find out through these activities. 1. Kids in the 1890s made their own toys from what they could find at home. One of the most popular toys was a string and button buzz saw. Make your own from materials around your home by following these the instructions at 2. When kids went to school, town or to visit friends, they walked. Sometimes it was as far as three miles there and back. Take a walk with your family while imagining you live in the 1890s. Calculate how far you would have to walk to visit your favorite places! 3. At school, the kids recited the Pledge of Allegiance just like they do now. But the words were different. The pledge was first published in 1892. Find the original words and compare to the pledge we recite today. 4. Kids wore overalls, short pants, calico dresses, long skirts, straw hats and

bonnets. Dress the part by creating an 1890s outfit. If it’s OK with your parents, post a picture and tag @HarnHomesteadMuseum on Facebook or @harnhomestead on Instagram so the Harn can see your territorial creations. 5. Until you can visit again, take a virtual ‘Walk through the Harn Homestead’ at Visit for details on their reopening this summer.



86. Learn what it means to portray the Oklahoma Standard at and make a list of ways your family can show up to serve, rise up to honor and step up to be kind. When the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum reopens, plan a visit to commemorate this 25th anniversary year of the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal building to remember those lost, those who survived and those changed forever. 87. Enjoy a day trip to the Wichita Mountain Wildlife Refuge in Lawton. Get tips for your visit at lawton-long-weekend. 88. Read to a furry friend through the Metro Library’s Reading to Dogs program, offered virtually throughout the summer. Visit for details.


Become a citizen scientist by creating your own mammal feeder!

A citizen scientist is any person who helps participate in scientific research, like gathering their own observations, to send to researchers trying to answer real-world questions. Make your own mammal feeder and participate in the University of Chicago’s Project Squirrel: Materials: • Scissors • 2 plastic bottles of similar size • Tape • Stick CLICK FOR MOBILE-FRIENDLY VERSION • String Instructions: 1. Cut the tops off of the two bottles. 2. Use one of the bottoms of the bottles to make a bottom for the feeder. Cut two windows opposite of one another for the animals to access the food. 3. Poke a small hole directly under the feeder windows to slide the perch stick through, then place the perch stick in the holes. 4. Tape the two bottle tops together, with one top facing up and the other facing down, as seen in the diagram.


5. Tape the upside-down bottle top to the bottom piece with the windows and perch stick. 6. Make a hole in a bottle cap and run a string through to hang the feeder. 7. Screw on the bottle top and hang for your backyard squirrels to enjoy! Until it’s time to visit SKELETONS: Museum of Osteology again, learn more about how citizen scientists help in the study of bones in the new virtual exhibit Behind the Bones at category/exhibits. Learn animal facts, take quizzes and check out never-before-seen specimens and stories of the Museum of Osteology!


90. Enjoy a snow cone. Find our readers’ favorite stands at 91. Find out-of-this-world adventure in Weatherford at the Stafford Air & Space Museum. 92. Unwrap and melt the broken pieces of your old crayons to make new ones. Find instructions at 93. Pick up everything you need to get crafty at home with Unpluggits Paint & Play’s to-go kits. 94. Learn how to say hello in several Native languages. 95. Check out one of OKC’s many free museums — including the Rattlesnake Museum! Find a full list at 96. Give back by making healthy snack packs for the toddlers served by Infant Crisis Services. Visit for the Micro-Volunteer (Volunteer from Home) opportunity to learn what to include in your packs. 98. Research the history of The Guardian, the bronze


Bee kind to your local pollinators!

Pollinators play an important role in our ecosystem. Learn how you can help! 1. Pollinators sometimes travel long distances to collect pollen. You can help by providing them a space where they can stop and rest awhile, or even build a home! Invite solitary bees to make your backyard their safe haven by building a simple DIY bee hotel. Find instructions at 2. When planning your summer garden, consider adding pollinator-friendly plants like green milkweed, Beebalm, Maximillian sunflower and blue sage. Certain kinds of plants are best at providing pollinators food in the form of nectar, leaves and stems for larvae and pollen to spread around. Find more information about pollinator-friendly plants at 3. Become a pollinator scientist! Observe a flowering plant in your backyard or neighborhood and count the pollinators that visit. Collect your data using a camera, drawings or tally marks. What kinds of pollinators visited the most? Which visited the least? Did



you identify any new pollinators that you hadn’t seen before? Learn more about conducting a pollinator count at The Myriad Gardens outdoor grounds and Crystal Bridge Conservatory are open to enjoy nature while social distancing. The Children’s Garden, Thunder Foundation and Plaza Foundation are currently scheduled to open June 1. Visit for the most up-to-date information.

sculpture depicting an American Indian man atop Oklahoma’s Capitol building. Then take a drive to see it in person. 99. Learn about the history of the banjo and enjoy toe-tapping, knee-slapping virtual concerts by OKC’s American Banjo Museum until the attraction reopens at 100. Find socially distant waterfront fun at one of Oklahoma’s best “beaches.” Find our favorites at

B NUS Ideas 101. Make mud pies. 102. Volunteer as a family for Restore OKC, helping plant and maintain gardens at the nonprofit organization’s partner elementary schools. Social distancing is built in as only one family can volunteer at a time. Learn more at 103. Choreograph a family dance to a favorite song. 104. Use your imagination to envision pictures in the clouds as they drift by. 105. Head north to Stillwater to explore wide-open spaces and fresh air at The Botanic Gardens at Oklahoma State University. 106. Cool off underground by exploring an Oklahoma cave. 107. Make your own slip n slide. Find instructions at 108. Learn to doodle with local artist Danny Gorden. Find his tips at 109. Press summer flowers from your garden and turn them into a work of art. 110. Draw your self portrait. Editor’s note: While this list is up-to-date as of publication, attractions and venues may have made changes due to COVID-19 and/or city and state regulations. Double check with all attractions and venues before visiting. METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM / SUMMER 2020





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To Go Kits!

Tuesday - Saturday 10am-2pm Take your kit home and paint.

Pop in or call and pick out your project. Purchasing ceramics? Bring it back and we’ll fire it too! Offering curbside delivery. Stay tuned for reopening date.

When things get back to normal, we hope you’ll visit us at the Harn Homestead.

Your entire family will enjoy the tour! Until then, stay safe! 405-235-4058

405-340-PLUG • • 575 Enterprise Dr., Edmond (South of 15th, off Kelly) 1721 N. Lincoln Blvd, Oklahoma City



All are invited to enter!


Submit a video of your kiddo's mad skills for a chance to win. METROFAMILYMAGAZINE.COM/ CONTESTS



like a Ninja!

Find your Ninjaline kits and accessories here!

birth to teens

7638 N. Western, OKC

Do You Have a Child That is a Problem Feeder?

Does your child: - eat the same foods every day? - eat less than 20 foods? - cry or fall apart with new foods? - refuse an entire category of food? - eat a different meal than the rest of the family?

Our Certified Feeding Therapists Can Help!




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