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INSIDE COVER We’re officially in the thick of September, which means Oktoberfest, a spirited celebration of sweet beers and salted meats heralding crisp autumn breezes. By Matt Dinger Cover by Phillip Danner Photo by Jared Kinley of Light Box Studios
American Legion Citizen Spotlight 6 Astronomy Column 8 Chicken-Fried News 5
EAT & DRINK 10
COVER Fall beer review Zoo Brew 17 COVER German food 20 Best of OKC nomination ballot 22 Gazedibles 14
ARTS & CULTURE 24
First American Museum Pride on 39th 28 Calendar 27
MUSIC Chris McCain Nikolas Thompson 33 Live music 30 32
THE HIGH CULTURE 35
FUN 36 37
Puzzles sudoku | crossword Astrology
OKG CLASSIFIEDS 38
VOL. XLIII NO. 09 PUBLISHER | Bryan Hallman email@example.com EDITOR | Matt Dinger firstname.lastname@example.org CREATIVE DIRECTOR | Phillip Danner DIGITAL MEDIA & PRODUCTION COORDINATOR | Kendall Bleakley SOCIAL DESIGNER | Berlin Green ADVERTISING email@example.com 405-528-6000 ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES Saundra Godwin | firstname.lastname@example.org Christy Duane | email@example.com Clyde Dorr | firstname.lastname@example.org Grant Freeman | email@example.com ACCOUNTING/HR MANAGER Monique Dodd | firstname.lastname@example.org CIRCULATION MANAGER Patrick Hanscom | email@example.com CONTRIBUTORS KM Bramlett Frances Danger Brett Fieldcamp Staci Elder Hensley Evan Jarvicks John Eric Osborn Miguel Rios Ryan Spencer Josh Wallace OKGA Z E T TE .COM | S EP T EM B ER 1 5 , 2 0 2 1
For struggling veterans & their families, Norman’s American Legion Post Offers Help from the Experts By Staci Elder Hensley For over four years, Air Force veteran Keith C. had struggled in vain to obtain the military benefits he earned during his time serving in Afghanistan and Qatar. His service left Keith with numerous health issues, including the after-effects of a traumatic brain injury. He and his wife sought help from a local veterans’ organization, only to find themselves spending thousands of dollars on unnecessary doctors’ visits and reports, working with volunteers who processed paperwork incorrectly, refused to return phone calls and told they them they “just had to be patient.” Frustrated and near despair, Keith took the advice of a friend and turned to Norman’s American Legion Post #88 and its dedicated team of accredited veterans service officers (VSOs), who quickly resolved the situation. At the Norman Post, VSOs are available to help veterans and their dependents with applying and processing claims for financial compensation, pension and death benefits, temporary financial assistance, and additional government programs. More importantly, it’s the only local organization which has remained open and available to assist veterans and their family members throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, said Senior VSO Carl Ellison. There are never any fees charged, and walk-ins are welcome. Since the pandemic began in March 2020, the Post 4
has obtained more than $1.8 million in benefits for its clients, he said. For Keith, the Norman American Legion’s VSO team was a godsend. “We waited for years. It was frustrating and drawn out, and it put a huge emotional and financial toll on our family,” Keith said. “The first time we went to the Norman American Legion Post they went over the huge stack of paperwork and guided us through our next steps. Then they went with us to the VA hospital the next day to get me enrolled in the system, and I’ve already gotten x-rays and other consults scheduled. They have taken a huge burden off my shoulders, and the other place we went to never even told us we could see doctors and get tests and actual help free of charge.” Success stories like Keith’s are common, and they mean the world to the Norman American Legion team. “We are doing great things for the veterans, and that is a wonderful feeling,” said VSO Tammie Richard. “Each veteran has their own story, and we are there to listen and help to the best of our ability to get the issues resolved that are invading their life and minds.” What makes the difference is that unlike many veterans’ organizations, Post 88’s service officers are accredited by the U.S. Veteran’s Administration and work directly with VA personnel. This typically makes it easier and faster
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to navigate the benefits application process and receive approval. The Norman Post’s VSO team is led by Ellison, who has more than 30 years’ experience and in July was named the American Legion’s “Veterans Service Officer of the Year.” A veteran of both the U.S. Army and the Oklahoma Air National Guard, Ellison has trained many service officers over the years, and he monitors every active claim at the Post on a daily basis, with clients coming in from across the nation and as far away as Europe. “Giving back to those who served our country is incredibly important to me and to our team,” Ellison said. “These people answered the call when our country was in need, and now they and their families deserve to be helped when they need medical care and other support.” In March of 2020, he and fellow VSO Cheryl Cooper implemented the complex software program VETPRO, which allows them to interface and communicate directly with the VA, further speeding up the claims process. Cooper, who’s been a VSO for five years, said that vets frequently struggle for years or even decades without realizing they have a qualifying health issue, or after having been denied in the past. “I get a lot of people who come in here for something else and then they start to talk, and my goal is to catch them as early as possible,” she said. In addition to processing benefits, like all American Legion Posts, Norman’s Post #88 works with the local community in various ways. Covid has put many programs on hold, but typically members visit area schools and work extensively with local Scout troops, among other activities. During the pandemic, they’ve also done driveby birthday parties and other distanced events in support of their members. Officially founded in 1919, the American Legion is the oldest military service agency in the country, and it’s
Above Members of the Norman American Legion Post 88, assisting one of their fellow vets. From left are: Post 88 Senior Veterans Service Officer Carl Ellison, and VSOs Coy Hensley, Harley McPeek and Tammie Richard. | Photo provided by Norman American Legion Post #88 Left Carl Ellison, senior veterans service officer for the Norman American Legion Post #88, consults with fellow VSO Tammie Richard. | Photo provided by Norman American Legion Post #88
had an enormous influence on the care and treatment of veterans. The group is responsible for many programs initiated during the past century that assist veterans, including the G.I. bill, which covers the cost of a college education post-service. Norman’s Post #88 was among the first to be established in the country. It celebrated its centennial birthday in 2019, and has been named the top American Legion Post in Oklahoma multiple times in recent years. Most people don’t realize that American Legion posts are nonprofits, and receive no financial support. To help meet the demand – which is expected to grow in the wake of the recent military withdrawal from Afghanistan -- Norman’s Post is actively seeking financial and other donations for its veteran support services and community service outreach programs. Taxdeductible donations may be sent to: American Legion Post 88, P.O. Box 11, Norman, OK 73070. “We do a myriad of things people have no idea about, said Norman Post Commander Ernest Martin. “There’s a huge number of vets in central Oklahoma, and we do whatever we can to further vets’ causes and to help them get the help they deserve.”
Black Sky Affair by Ryan Spencer
Jiminy Cricket was wrong. When you wish upon a star, it does make a difference who you are. Okay, maybe that’s a trifle harsh. The whens and the wheres, though, are vital bits of info for all of us celestially curious if we mean to catch that next eclipse or planetary alignment. We’re here to tell you all about what the heavens have in store for September. Looking for a fun, educational, and socially distanced activity to experience with your closest folks, no special optical equipment needed? Well strap yourselves in, space
cadets… We’re taking off. Let’s start big. Of all the interestingly named full moons of the year, the “harvest moon” of the autumnal equinox is almost certainly the most well-known, so called for its traditional usefulness in brightly lighting the fields soon after sunset during the reaping season of the summer crops in Earth’s Northern Hemisphere. Right as the days of the year begin to shorten, the harvest moon came along in time to offer the farmers of yore quite a bit more light through the night to assist in pulling in their yield. This astound-
ingly big, bright lunar show begins at sundown on Sept. 19, continuing through the equinox on Sept. 20, and following through to the night of Sept. 21 (fickle Oklahoma cloud cover permitting, of course). The September sky holds more than this. From our earthly perspective, planets will be cozying up to the moon. Right after the new moon on Sept. 6 and 7 (new moons occur when the moon is located with the sun on the other side of the Earth at night, allowing for a much darker sky and a clearer view of the stars and planets), our sister planet Venus appeared only about four degrees away from the waxing crescent of the moon. Planets don’t twinkle like stars, but rather emit a constant and
unwavering light, making Venus–the brightest regular object in our night sky aside from the moon–super-easy to spot, shining unmistakably alongside our lone natural satellite. On Sept. 16 and Sept. 17, respectively, expect to see the more distant gas giants Saturn and Jupiter in similar close proximity to the moon. Though waning, the moon will be gibbous at this time of the month and significantly brighter, though both far-flung yet enormous planets will still be observable with nothing but the naked eye. Think midnight-ish for best viewing. Eager to explore farther into the nighttime heavens? Several phone apps are out there to serve your stargazing needs and wants. My favorite, Star Chart by developer Escape Velocity Limited, is free to download in its lite version, user-friendly, offers a simple point-and-look interface, and provides scads of info on stars, planets, moons, and constellations, regardless of time of day or night. Never has it steered me wrong. Get outside and get to viewing these awe-inspiring heavenly delights. Here’s to clear skies, and happy wishing.
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Disty Simpson and Matthew Danuser of Fill My Basket | Photo Berlin Green
Disty Simpson & Matthew Danuser of Fill My Basket In each issue, we are highlighting a person in our community who stands out for their leadership, kindness, and good deeds. Know someone like that? Email bgreen@ okgazette.com to share their story. Small acts of kindness can go a long way, and it’s what inspired Disty Simpson and Matthew Danuser to start filling baskets. In 2016, Matthew saw a video of a man purchasing someone’s groceries and walking away, asking nothing in return. He hopped on social media to find that Disty had seen the same video. Deeply touched by what he’d seen, Matthew reached out to his friend and said, “I want to do this.” The pair didn’t start with much. At the time, Matthew worked as a car salesman and decided to donate his $500 bonus to the cause. Disty was bartending and could only contribute $60, but they were determined to make an impact. “I’m like, ‘I have 1,800 friends on Facebook, if everyone gave me just $1, this could work.’ So we did a fundraiser, and we raised five bucks. From one single guy who worked for me who said he believed in me,” Simpson said. “So we kept going and did another fundraiser that night, and the next morning, a gentleman gave us $300, raising around $600. So the first time we did this, we were able to spend about $1,200 purchasing groceries for people.” 6
“I thought we were just going to do it once and go back to our normal lives,” Danuser said. “And somebody knew us and sent it to the news, and it’s just grown from there.” The story didn’t stop there, and the idea continued to grow farther than they ever would have imagined. Soon after the duo’s first grocery buying mission, Upworthy reached out and offered to film a video telling their story and sharing their message. On Nov. 13, 2016, World Kindness Day, the Fill My Basket team released their video in Paramount Cinema on Film Row, inviting everyone who had donated to their cause or received a gift of kindness to attend. By 2017, they had grown enough to become a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization. Four years later, the Fill My Basket mission has extended far past Oklahoma. The nonprofit now has affiliate groups across the U.S. and reaching as far as China, where they were featured on a local radio station inspiring citizens to take part in random acts of kindness. Each Fill My Basket affiliate group is entirely funded by volunteers, community generosity, and donations from local businesses. “We have people in Greece, the Philippines, Australia, that are all doing acts of kindness. It’s crazy, you know, but it all starts here. We have so many resources here that we had no idea. People actually want to help other people but maybe they don’t know how, or they have stuff they don’t know what to do with it. We now have so many outlets that we’re able to take them and just be that nice hands and feet to get those things to people that need it,” Danuser said. Since its inception, Fill My Basket
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has raised over $32,000 paying for over 600 grocery baskets. And while they do look for people who need help, the nonprofit doesn’t stop there. “It’s not really up to us; we believe that everyone deserves an act of kindness. It’s not about money; it’s just about that act of kindness,” Simpson said. “Even a person who has money can benefit from receiving a blessing of kindness, and it can be huge for them because maybe no one has done anything for them in a long time … For us, it’s about stopping what you’re doing— just using a random act and thinking outside the box. There are just so many people that could use just a little bit of a push, and if that push is kindness, it can go a long way.” For Simpson and Danuser, Fill My Basket has become a way of life, and they exemplify its mission wherever they go. In 2019, after accepting an invitation from Netflix Studios to visit the set of the film “Good Sam,” Disty and Matthew contacted Los Angeles restaurants and rented bikes to take donated food to the residents of Skid Row, a 50-block area downtown known for its high rates of homelessness. In recent months, low morale amongst hospital and nursing staff still overwhelmed by the COVID-19 pandemic inspired Disty and Matthew to team up with Brown’s Bakery to do Donuts for Nurses. They now deliver fresh donuts and baked goods to the local hospitals a few days a week. Over the next month, they’ll collect pallets of donated pumpkins to create carving kits for underprivileged children. Throughout the holiday season, they’ll team up with volunteer Santas to distribute toys, clothes, backpacks, and other needed items.
Kindness just feels good and even the smallest bit of it can change someone’s life in unexpected ways. “We had a veteran tell us after we bought his groceries that he had been considering suicide,” Danuser said. “He told me that one’s ever done anything like this for him and this could have saved him. We were just out in some random small town, it was truly like it was meant to be. And it was so awesome, it’s such an incredible feeling to know you’ve helped someone.” With no plans of slowing down, the duo has big dreams for the future of Fill My Basket and they hope their philosophy catches on. “We started groceries; we still do groceries. But our true basis is these random acts of kindness and hopefully inspiring people to be kind to each other and continue doing small acts. It’s changed us.” Simpson said. “It’s changed the people around us. I truly believe little ripples can create giant waves.” For more information about fillmybasket.com, scan the QR code with your smart phone.
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chicken friedNEWS So sick of talking about Kevin Stitt. So sick of it. Henceforth, Chicken-Fried News will no longer be referring to him as “Governor” or even “Gov.” when we address him, because though he may have won that title, he certainly hasn’t earned it. To us, he’s just Kevin now. And, oh, Kev…. Here’s a guy who lacks such selfawareness that he decides to uproot a functional scientific organization, founding a pandemic research facility while he misleads the state into miserably failing the COVID-19 group project harder than just about every state in the union. Now, this hamfisted lumphead is really sending out updates about Afghanistan as the “commander-in-chief” of Oklahoma’s armed forces. This all smacks of hopes of an unrealistic White House run, made conceptually possible for every goon barred from doing business in several states, thanks to Donald Quixote, fondly remembered for his time in presidential office spent shaking his
Illustrations by John Eric Osborn
fist at “cancer causing” wind turbines. At least that’s over. Unless… Kevin looks like he’s making another run at the governor’s mansion. And it’s sounding more and more like he might have some challengers from within his own party. Those are likely to fail and then it’s going to be left again to us, as a state, to decide if we really want that lopsided grin spewing alternating absurdity and vapidity speaking for all us Oklahomans on the national stage. If he does it again, which he well may, seeing as how he beat out even reasonable conservatives like former Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett, he’ll only be bolstered in taking a run at a more powerful office next time. And the time after that. A year isn’t much in the grand scheme of things, but four more years of this is too much. If Kevin makes it to Congress, that’s a bigger joke than we could ever write.
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Oklahoma’s back in the headlines again, this time for being America’s champion horse paste eaters. Or maybe not. “As the story ran, it sounded like all of Oklahoma hospitals were filled with people who have overdosed on ivermectin and that’s not the case … The cases we are seeing, people who are overdosing on ivermectin, they are taking fullstrength cattle doses and coming in and that is something that could be avoided,” the doctor at the heart of the story that went international told News9. Okay, so maybe this isn’t a fullfledged epidemic in need of a cheapand-cheesy graphic behind every anchor telling their nightly scary stories around the glow of a television, but still, let’s wind back the tape on that bit. “People who are overdosing on ivermectin, they are taking full strength cattle doses.” Nothing says “I’m not a sheep” quite like overdosing on livestock medication.
Those in favor of the ivermectin treatment are quick to point out that the medication won a Nobel prize in 2015 for its application as an anti-parasitic. That it did. It seems like a wonderful drug, when properly prescribed by a doctor, but ODing on horse paste just to soil yourself in a grocery store or while writhing on the floor of a packed ER lobby just sounds like a terrible way to end any that ends in “-day.” One Oklahoman buttering their bread with horse paste is too many, so I say to those asking themselves, “Should I take concentrated horse dewormer because my cousin shared a meme about it?” That answer is no. Absolutely not. What the hell is wrong with you? Why are we evenhavingtosaythisohmygodstopitjuststop.
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Beer Provided By
By Matt Dinger Photos Phillip Danner
Even though the weather doesn’t reflect it yet, it’s Oklahoma’s climatological autumn. In other words, Oktoberfest season. The Märzen, or March beer, is the seasonal standard. Rich in malt rather than hops, these beers — sometimes referred to in style as “festbiers” — tend towards the sweeter side. While three of these offerings are repeats from last year’s list as they represent the “Oklahoma standard” of Oktoberfest brews, we’ve also broadened our list this year to include both out-of-state and German selections.
Stonecloud Festbier Autumn Lager Stonecloud has really ramped up its game on more traditional beer styles since last year (their Classique and Lite are refreshing versions of the pilsner standard) and this year’s festbier falls perfectly into that lineup. If you’re into their more unique offerings, this one may not be up your alley, but when it comes to doing a classic justice, there’s a reason Stonecloud is one of the most lauded breweries in the nation and it’s always great to get your hands on their fall seasonal.
Twisted Spike Oktoberfest
Twisted Spike’s Oktoberfest offering is definitely on the sweeter, maltier side of this year’s autumnal offerings, but that’s not a complaint. For those who prefer the heavier flavor in their autumnal beer, this one definitely delivers. Even though the IBUs register at 30 for this brew, the malted flavor definitely tamps down the Bavarian hops. At 5.8 percent, the weight of this beer’s flavor will stop you before the alcohol content does.
Marshall gets this year’s nod for our Tulsa selection (we gave plenty of love to Cabin Boys in our Tulsa-centric issue). Another beer that they have been brewing season after season, the 2021 run is as good as it’s ever been. A balance of sweet and crushable, with a tad more hops than some Oktoberfest beers, this blue-andwhite can is always a sight for sore eyes as the breeze starts to crispen. The flavor holds well for months, so stock up.
Anthem Oktoberfest For hopheads who just cannot imagine a beer without some of the bitter flower aftertaste, Anthem’s Oktoberfest is right for you. Even though the IBUs are listed on the can are only 20, which is pretty common for a märzen, there’s definitely a taste of bitterness in the finish. The 5.5 percent alcohol content is also on par for an Oktoberfest beer rather than a hopped beer, though it may be the Viennese malts that are actually providing the bitter twist.
Coop OKtoberfest Coop has been brewing its OKtoberfest for years now, and it’s a personal fall standard. While the malt and yeast definitely shine through, it’s easily the most sessionable beer of the lot and, with an alcohol by volume content of 5.6 percent, it’s easy to get through a six-pack and not regret it in the morning. Though the company’s full name is Coop Ale Works, they produce a mighty fine lager each autumn. Continued on pg 13
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Continued from pg 10
Beer Provided By
Vanessa House Awkward Encounters of the Festival Kind Definitely taking the award for our imaginary Best Name of an Oktoberfest Beer category, but they also receive high marks from us in all other categories as well. Known for their 401K pilsner, Awkward Encounters has a character all of its own while being distinctly festbier material. Coming in at 5.1 percent ABV, this is one of those six-packs that you’re going to lose count of, opening the fridge for the last one to find you’re holding the final empty can in your hand.
Rahr & Sons Brewing Company OKtoberfest This year’s south-of-the-state-line selection is another one of those you see year after year on store shelves (and we pick up at least one six pack a year). It clocks in highest in alcohol content among our choices this year at 6.7 percent ABV, which doesn’t necessarily serve its taste as well as it does catching a buzz quicker. Still a perennial favorite, we forgive them for their central Texas location (though they could take some Märzen tips from their southern neighbor Shiner).
Paulaner Oktoberfest Märzen
Hacker Pschorr Oktoberfest Märzen
Bell’s is a name we’re seeing a lot more on store shelves and on taps in Oklahoma lately, and we’re not mad about it. This Michigan beer company is more widely known for its flagship Oberon Ale, a wheat beer, but this Märzen is also notable. This one will be more for fans of less sweet Oktoberfest beers, with a quickly-disappearing aftertaste that makes it easier to drink quickly, and at 5.5 percent ABV, it’s relatively safe to do so.
Along with Warsteiner, Paulaner are the gold-standard German beers that can (and have been for decades) easily be found on Oklahoma store shelves. According to the Munich company, they’ve been brewing with just water, hops, yeast and malt for nearly four centuries. A history lesson in a bottle, Paulaner’s Märzen tastes like everything you think of when it comes to German beer: rich, malty and smooth. If you haven’t already, try tasting this one in tandem with their Hefeweizen.
Imported by Paulaner (with a similar label design), you might consider this a sister beer to that one. Reportedly founded in 1417, this Märzen tastes about as “old world” as it gets. With the European bottle standard of 11.2 ounces (same as Paulaner), the quantity tones down the ABV of 5.8 percent per bottle, but the malty and less sweet flavor makes the serving size taste as robust as a pint. If you’re going to try one Oktoberfest beer this year, make this your top choice. COV E R S TORY OKGA Z E T TE .COM | S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1
Hundreds of people and dozens of breweries participate each year in the Oklahoma City Zoo’s ZOObrew event. | Photo provided
Lions, Tigers and Beers, Oh My! More than 65 breweries will be pouring hundreds of beers at the return of the full-scale ZOObrew this October.
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by Josh Wallace One of Oklahoma City’s favorite fall drinking events is back and bigger than ever as the Oklahoma City Zoo is scheduled to host ZOObrew on Oct. 1 In its 13th consecutive year, the 21-and-older event was held last year, but at a scaled down capacity due the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, said Matt Burkholder, director of development for ZOOfriends. “The Zoo has been doing some outdoor walkabouts, so we had about 800 people with about 12 breweries last year. It wasn’t anything compared to what it usually is, but we spread it out completely, we made sure that we were very careful in that time that we were in last year,” Burkholder said. In contrast, this year’s event is on track to be the biggest yet, with more than 65 breweries scheduled to be pouring, which Burkholder said equates to about 400 different beers for guests to sample from 7 to 10 p.m. “As far as an attendance goal, we’re looking at about 2,200 people on-site, spread out throughout the Zoo, so we’ve spread out these breweries significantly. Being an outdoor event really helps during this climate. We’re looking at 2,200 people this year, which would be the biggest ZOOBrew attendance-wise and brewery participation,” he said. With tickets having been on sale for just a little over a month, Burkholder said the demand is high, with initial VIP tickets selling out quickly, and selling out again after offering another 200 in early September. “900 tickets sold out in two days,” Burkholder said. “We have a lot of Zoo members that come to this event, they look forward to this event just to get out a little bit and have some fun. A lot of people have been coming to this event for years. It’s kind of become a cult hit amongst the craft beer community.”
General admission tickets are still on sale at $65 per person, with ZOOfriends members receiving a 10 percent discount. “You get access to the zoo, you get unlimited samplings from all of the breweries that are available, we’ll have a silent auction, food trucks are available there for purchase, we’ll have three different food trucks,” Burkholder said. “We’re going to do a sea lion presentation, carousel will be open, the zoo amenities will be open.”
A look at the participating breweries and one can see the majority hail from the Sooner State, with just a smattering of national and international offerings. Burkholder said it’s by design that they feature as many Oklahoma breweries as possible. “It’s really got an emphasis on the local breweries, but we do partner with some distributors who bring out some national brands,” he said. “We really want to partner with those local breweries. One of the things that we’re doing different this year is we’re partnering with Stonecloud and Lively, two local breweries, and they are brewing a specialty beer for the Zoo. So, they’re going to be unveiling that at the pre-brew session.” Stonecloud’s special brew will later be featured for sale at their taproom and at the Zoo, with 10 percent of proceeds going back to the Zoo, Burkholder said. Along with well-known staple breweries, such as COOP Ale Works and Prairie Artisan Ales, the event will also feature the offerings of newer breweries and homebrews. One such brewery, Canadian River Brewing Co. out of Chickasha, is the product of the passion for beer that Holly and Nigel Duham shared when they
he nt. |
launched in early 2019. “We built a small, even smaller than a microbrewery, just a real small brewery we built here on our property. We call that our farmhouse brewery,” Holly Dunham said. Later that year, Holly Dunham said they quickly met their 10-year goal as they expanded into downtown Chickasha. “We always had the intention of just growing the business through self-distribution and kegging, owning a taproom. But, as we were building it, we started speaking with some of the members of the community and we found this great opportunity to open brewery number two, downtown location, with a beautiful taproom. It’s in a historic building that was once the parking garage for the Chickasha hotel,” she said.
excited to be back this year. It’s probably the best pouring event I can do as a homebrewer who is doing this, mainly, to promote something that’s close to my heart and to also gain exposure in hopes that one day we can be a brewery in planning,” Hawkins said. Hawkins said his home brewery is named in honor of his sister, who died of cervical cancer in 2013, and that being able to attend events like ZOObrew is important to him. “I started brewing under that name about four or five years ago, with the goal of pouring and raising awareness for the National Cervical Cancer Coalition, specifically, the Oklahoma Chapter. Claire was my sister’s middle name.” Like the other breweries geared to offer exclusive brews for the event, Hawkins said he’ll be bringing a beer he’s been working on for a while.
Their first year at ZOObrew, Holly Dunham said they’ve wanted to participate but the event coincided with other obligations, but things lined up this year. “We found a way to make it happen this year,” she said. “It’s definitely a very important event amongst the craft beer community here in Oklahoma. We have four beers in production that are going out in state-wide distribution, so to get people exposed to those beers at these events and go ahead and let them know that ‘Hey, this is at your local liquor store or your favorite restaurant in your neighborhood,’ is really a huge marketing opportunity for us.” On tap, the brewery will be pouring their Oktoberfest Märzen, a Belgianstyle abbey beer, an IPA and, exclusively for the event and their taproom, a coffee doppelbock. Mike Hawkins, owner of Claire Beer Company, is a veteran of ZOObrew with this year’s event set to be his third time pouring after sitting out last year . “It was just a different thing last year with COVID and everything. Super
“This will be the first year that I’m serving a coconut-pineapple blonde ale, which is sort of like a pina colada, a blonde ale that I’ve been brewing for about a year now that I’ve gotten good feedback on. I decided I would try it this year at ZOOBrew,” he said. In addition, he’ll also be pouring a New England-style IPA, a pale ale and a stout. For more information about Zoo Brew or to purchase tickets, scan the QR code with your smart phone.
E AT & DRINK OKGA Z E T TE .COM | S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1
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German food may never have had a boom in Oklahoma City, but the cuisine does have a rich history in the metro. There are three tiers of German offerings available in close distance to the city core: the formal, real-deal food at Royal Bavaria, the richness of the bread and meats from Ingrid’s Kitchen, and the brat and beer on the run variety exhibited by Fassler Hall. But first, we must pour a little from our steins in remembrance of a longstanding German establishment that has shuttered in recent years: Old Germany. After unsuccessful attempts to revive the former Choctaw restaurant ended in 2019, the last standing in the realm of true German eateries is Royal Bavaria.
Royal Bavaria Located south of Moore and several miles east of Interstate 35, Royal Bavaria, 3401 S. Sooner Road, offers traditional German dishes for the evening crowd seven days a week. The menu items are also listed in German, with English counterparts, of course. Anyone even vaguely familiar with German food knows that the menu is heavy with cooked meats, pickled cabbage and potatoes and the selections at Royal Bavaria are Continue on pg 18 E AT & DRINK OKGA Z E T TE .COM | S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1
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no let down. For reference, Bavaria is the state in southwest Germany of which Munich is the capital and is the birthplace of the Oktoberfest tradition. Bavaria is also known for its distinctive cuisine. Some of the heartier, must-try dishes at Royal Bavaria include: Bayerischer Schweinebraten in Biersauce Mit Semmelknödl and Blaukraut: Sounds more intimidating than it is. The literal translation of this is, Bavarian pork shoulder in a beer gravy with dumplings and red cabbage. Enough said. Jägerschnitzel Mit Pilzrahmsauce, Spätzle: A schnitzel is just a thin strip of meat, in this case pork and a Jägerschnitzel indicates that it’s topped with a mushroom sauce. A Spätzle is just a type of thin German noodle. Schlachtplatte AKA the Royal Bavaria: We’re not going to tell you what the literal translation of this one is, but there’s nothing mysterious about this traditional autumn dish. It’s just grilled and smoked pork chop, gourmet ham, and a skinny pork sausage served with sauerkraut and mashed potatoes, with gravy. There is always a wide selection of craft beer brewed at Royal Bavaria, including their seasonals. For those who aren’t into beer, Royal Bavaria also
offers a nice selection of wine from Germany, Austria and the U.S.
Ingrid’s Ingrid’s is known for two things: bread and brunch. There’s a reason Ingrid’s Kitchen, 3701 N. Youngs Blvd., has more than two dozen sandwiches, from deli to grilled and German selections, but in the spirit of the season, we recommend these three, all served with Ingrid’s signature bread: Their Sauerbraten, or roast beef topped with brown gravy, includes sauerkraut, red cabbage, German potato salad. Schinkenwurst is a German bologna and ham served on bread with German mustard and mayonnaise. The Gelbwurst sandwich is veal loaf served on bread with German mustard and mayonnaise. Their Sunday brunch, served from 10:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Sunday, was a thing before brunch was ever a thing in Oklahoma City, but hearty offerings include: eggs benedict, scrambled eggs, sausage links, bacon, biscuit and sausage gravy, roasted and mashed potatoes, chicken, roast beef, bratwurst and sauerkraut, and salads as well as the entree and vegetable of the day. But don’t forget about the desserts.
Highly recommended are the nuessecken, which is shortbread crust with nuts, coconut and chocolate, or a streusel square with cream cheese, coconut, and streusel topping along with a rotating filling. And, of course, there are German chocolate and Black Forest cakes available.
Fassler Hall Simply put, Fassler Hall, 421 NW 10th St., is a beer hall. Its pretzels and brats definitely fill stomachs, but you really should be coming here primarily for its draft selection. Offering more than a dozen German and other European beers on tap at prices of $6 or $7 a serving (or $12/$14 per liter), there aren’t many other places you’re likely to find Weihenstephaner or Spaten on draft, and the Warsteiner Dunkel (dark) is one of the tastiest beers around. There are plenty more varieties of bottled German beer on hand as well as a well-rounded selection of Oklahoma brews and typical domestic fare. To soak it all up, snap one of their Bavarian pretzels. Both the house mustard and the smoked gouda cheese sauce Fassler offers with them are wonderful. Speaking of cheese, definitely try the cheddarwurst over the regular bratwurst, but make sure to get some of that mustard with it.
Three of the premier German restaurants in the Oklahoma City metro. | Photo Gazette staff
Roughtail Brewing Company 320 W. Memorial Road Find your flavor with beer from 24 taps with to-go options.
Frenzy Brewing Company 15 S. Broadway, Edmond Featuring 15 taps with four of their own signature beers.
Lively Beerworks 815 SW 2nd St. Offering 16 beers on tap from their brewhouse and others from around the world.
Twisted Spike Brewing Co
4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Mon.Thurs.,noon to 11 p.m. Fri. and Sat. and 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sun.
3 p.m. to 10 p.m. Mon.-Thurs., noon to midnight Fri. and Sat., and 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday.
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11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sun.-Thurs. and 11 a.m. to midnight Fri. and Sat.
1 NW 10th St. Serving 26 beers on tap, including fall seasonal Spiketoberfest.
4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Mon.-Thurs. Fri. & Sat. noon to 11 p.m., and noon to 9 p.m. Sun.
OKLAHOMA HUMANE SOCIETY FOR Best Nonprofit Best Place to Volunteer
Saving the lives of homeless cats and dogs in Oklahoma. E AT & DRINK OKGA Z E T TE .COM | S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1
Oklahoma City’s original and longest-running readers’ poll, Best of OKC, is back for its 37th year! We need your input in telling us the best our city offers, so nominate your favorites RIGHT HERE or at bestofoklahomacity.com until Monday, September 27, 2021. STAY TUNED FOR THE RUNOFF BALLOT PUBLISHING OCTOBER 13!
FOOD & DRINK
16. BEST RESTAURANT OR BAKERY WITH GLUTEN-FREE OPTIONS
17. BEST DESSERT RESTAURANT, SHOP OR BAKERY 1.
BEST LOCAL CRAFT BREWER 18. BEST MEXICAN RESTAURANT
BEST LOCAL TAPROOM 19. BEST LATIN RESTAURANT (NOT MEXICAN)
BEST COCKTAIL (AND THE RESTAURANT/BAR THAT SERVES IT)
20. BEST ITALIAN RESTAURANT
BEST LATE-NIGHT EATS
22. BEST MEDITERRANEAN RESTAURANT
23. BEST INDIAN RESTAURANT
21. BEST WESTERN EUROPEAN RESTAURANT, NOT ITALIAN (DANISH, ENGLISH, FRENCH, GERMAN, IRISH, SCOTTISH, SPANISH, ETC.)
24. BEST EASTERN ASIAN RESTAURANT (CHINESE, JAPANESE, VIETNAMESE, THAI)
8. BEST TACO
BEST SANDWICH SHOP
32. BEST CHEF
33. BEST PRE- OR POST- EVENT SPOT TO GRAB A DRINK
34. BEST LGBTQ+ BAR OR CLUB
35. BEST NATIONAL OR REGIONAL RESTAURANT *
ARTS, CULTURE & ENTERTAINMENT 36. BEST LOCAL COVER BAND
37. BEST LOCAL ORIGINAL BAND OR SINGER (EX: SINGER/SONGWRITER, RAPPER, HIP-HOP GROUP)
38. BEST PERFORMING ARTS GROUP (EX: THEATER COMPANY, DANCE COMPANY, ORCHESTRAL GROUP)
25. BEST NEW RESTAURANT (TO OPEN AFTER 8/1/20) 39. BEST RADIO PERSONALITY, TEAM OR SHOW
10. BEST BARBECUE
31. BEST RESTAURANT
26. BEST FINE DINING RESTAURANT 40. BEST VISUAL ARTIST
BEST PIZZA PLACE
27. BEST NEIGHBORHOOD BAR 41. BEST LOCAL ANNUAL EVENT OR FESTIVAL
12. BEST STEAKHOUSE
28. BEST NEW BAR (TO OPEN AFTER 8/1/20) 42. BEST CHARITY EVENT
13. BEST SUSHI
29. BEST PATIO DINING 43. BEST FREE ENTERTAINMENT
14. BEST SEAFOOD
30. BEST DINER 44. BEST BAR/CLUB FOR LIVE MUSIC
15. BEST RESTAURANT WITH VEGAN OR VEGETARIAN MENU OPTIONS
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45. BEST PLACE FOR KARAOKE
60. BEST PET-FRIENDLY PATIO
76. BEST YOGA, PILATES OR BARRE STUDIO
46. BEST CONCERT VENUE
61. BEST NAUGHTY BUSINESS
77. BEST HEALTH NUTRITION STORE
47. BEST PUBLIC ART, NOT A MURAL (GIVE INTERSECTION AND ARTIST)
62. BEST PLACE FOR CONTINUING EDUCATION
78. BEST PLACE TO GET FIT*
63. BEST NEW RETAIL ESTABLISHMENT (TO OPEN AFTER 8/1/20)
79. BEST HOTEL*
48. BEST PUBLIC MURAL (GIVE INTERSECTION AND ARTIST)
80. BEST LOCAL PARK FOR MEET-UPS 49. BEST PLACE TO BUY LOCAL ART
64. BEST LOCAL GORCER, DELI, OR SPECIALTY FOOD SHOP 81. BEST PUBLIC BATHROOM*
50. BEST ART GALLERY
51. BEST MUSEUM
52. BEST LOCAL DISTRICT
53. BEST CASINO
GOODS & SERVICES 54. BEST PLACE TO BUY LIQUOR
65. BEST LOCAL SHOP TO SPRUCE UP YOUR OUTDOOR SPACE
66. BEST LOCAL FLORIST
67. BEST GARDEN SHOP
82. BEST DISPENSARY
68. BEST PLACE TO FIND UNIQUE GIFTS
83. BEST DISPENSARY FOR FLOWER
69. BEST TATTOO SHOP
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LIFE & WELLNESS
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86. BEST NEW DISPENSARY TO OPEN AFTER 8/1/20 55. BEST VAPOR SHOP
56. BEST CREDIT UNION OR BANK*
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70. BEST PLACE TO VOLUNTEER
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87. BEST HEAD SHOP (NON-DISPENSARY)
88. BEST HEALTH AND BEAUTY CANNABIS- INFUSED PRODUCT (AND WHO MAKES IT)
72. BEST PLASTIC SURGEON 89. BEST EDIBLE PRODUCT LINE 73. BEST HOSPITAL*
74. BEST MEDICAL SPA (BOTOX, FILLER, ETC.)
90. BEST PUBLIC PLACE TO CONSUME CANNABIS PRODUCTS
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Fair Food It’s September in Oklahoma which means it’s time for the Oklahoma State Fair. Now in its 114th year, people across the state will be swarming to the yearly attraction, and for good reasons — the rides, the fun, and the FOOD. But in case you feel like skipping out this year due to the increase of the Delta variant or other inherently introverted reasons but still feel the need to satisfy that fair food craving, here are seven alternatives that might just do the trick. By Berlin Green Photos Berlin Green or provided
The Fried Taco
While not quite the beloved Indian taco you’ll find at the Oklahoma State Fair, a Fried Taco is a lot less messy, and you get more flavorful options. At their space in The Collective food hall, you’ll find freshly prepared options like slow-cooked beef brisket or Caribbean Jerk chicken tucked in tortilla shells and fried to perfection. If you prefer your deep-fried goodness vegan, enjoy their delicious jackfruit taco. Add a side of tostones for a sweet twist of deep-fried plantains.
While Tokyo is undoubtedly best known for their sushi (and they have some fantastic fried options), they can’t be discounted for the perfect fried dessert. Their tempura ice cream is a delicious treat of deep-fried ice cream drizzled in chocolate syrup and whipped cream, finished with a cherry on top. They even add lemon wedges for an extra fresh twist. This one definitely gives that deep-fried Oreo a run for its money and it’s the perfect finale to any meal here.
Fair schmaire. Who needs to walk around all hot and sweaty in this sweltering Oklahoma sun when you can get fried pickles, great beer, and fantastic music right here on historic Uptown 23rd with cold air conditioning. Ponyboy’s limited menu of bar snacks includes a couple of our fried favorites including fried pickle chips and fried mac and cheese balls. Paired with a cold local craft brew and live music, you’ll forget the fair ever existed.
405-724-7680 308 NW 10th St.
S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1 | OKGA Z E T TE .COM E AT & DRINK
405-848-6733 7516 N Western Ave.
405-896-2037 423 NW 23rd St.
Nashbird Hot Dang Chicken
Sasquatch Shaved Ice
It doesn’t come on a stick, but it’s way better, and they might just put it on one for you. Nashbird’s chicken is loaded with flavor and they have several options from tenders to sandwiches. Make it sweet by trying their chicken and waffles, or if you’re feeling healthy, you can even make it a fried chicken salad. If you don’t want to stop at fried chicken, add some deep-fried pickles or try their mac and cheese poppers.
Okay, so it’s not really a funnel cake, but Hatch’s made-from-scratch Belgian waffle is pretty darn close. In fact, this delightful waffle is topped with a cream cheese anglaise, powdered sugar, and finished with house-made whipped cream, fresh berries, and warm syrup so it’s actually way, way better. Alternatively, their monkey bread, when available, makes another suitable funnel cake substitute. Best of all, it’s the perfect excuse to have dessert for breakfast. Plus, again, air conditioning.
Okay, well, you have to go out in the heat for this one, but I promise it’s worth it. I mean, what would summer or the Oklahoma State Fair even be without a sticky sweet snow cone? Sasquatch Shaved Ice claims to have the largest flavor selection not just in Oklahoma, but the world — stocking 112 individual flavors and offering 234,248 possible combinations. There are even 14 toppings to choose from. You won’t find that at the fair.
What is a fair without a corndog? This classic definitely had to make the list. You can find a fresh fair-style corn dog at Coneys-N-More. These aren’t just any old boring corn dogs either; here you can find freshly battered and fried hotlink corndogs and sausage corn dogs. You can even make it gourmet by turning it into a coney. Not far enough? Add some fried pepper chips or some pickle chips, and you’ve found the quintessential state fair meal.
405-600-9718 1 NW 9th St.
405-609-8936 1101 N Broadway Ave.
405-431-5705 1801 NW 16th St, Oklahoma City
405-677-8844 1317 SE 44th St. Suite G Oklahoma City
EL HUEVO AND OU GAMEDAYS, we go together like chips and queso Stop by before or after each OU gameday for the freshest Mexi breakfast, lunch and dinner in Norman.
Located off Tecumseh and 24th Ave. NW
ENJOY HALF PRICE
Appetizers AND Nachos DURING
WED - SAT
THE PARTY LIVES ON WITH
2 PM - 6 PM
$3 $5 $5 $4 $4
HOUSE MARGARITA (ROCKS/FROZEN) SANGRIA GRANDE SWIRL DRAFT BEER WINE
3522 24TH AVE. NW | NORMAN, OK 73069 ELHUEVOMEXIDINER.COM E AT & DRINK OKGA Z E T TE .COM | S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1
Oklahoma State Fair S E P T E M B E R 16 - 2 6
F REERET S !
WITH OUTSIDE GATE ADMISSION
Sept 16th THE OAK RIDGE BOYS 7:30 p.m.
Sept 17th SAWYER BROWN 7:30 p.m. Sept 18th JACKYL 8:00 p.m.
Sept 19th BEATLEMANIA LIVE! 7:30 p.m.
Sept 20th WE THE KINGDOM 7:30 p.m. Sept 21st
GARY LEWIS & THE PLAYBOYS
Sept 25th SKID ROW 8:00 p.m. Sept 26th
Sept 23rd JAMESON RODGERS 7:30 p.m. Sept 24th GINUWINE 7:30 p.m.
LA FIERA DE OJINAGA
The Of ficial Sof t Drink of the OKC Fairgrounds 24
S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1 | OKGA Z E T TE .COM ART S & CULTURE
More than a land acknowledgement The First Americans Museum offers a rare glimpse into the lives and cultures of Native Americans who call Oklahoma home. by Frances Danger Photo Berlin Green
The story of The First Americans has historically been one of stoic Chiefs in headdresses, mystical medicine men, winsome Indian princesses, and bloodthirsty braves awaiting their moment to attack. With the opening of the First Americans Museum (FAM) on Sept. 18, that narrative is about to change. Featuring first of their kind exhibitions, thoughtfully assembled by the world’s only team composed solely of Native curators, FAM stands as a true representation of what it means to be Native in a country that declared their independence by referring to Natives as “merciless Indian savages.” Originally named The American Indian Cultural Center, the 40-acre campus, 659 First Americans Blvd., was rebranded in 2019, setting the stage for a space that, with the input and guidance of the Tribal Nations, brings a diversity to Native representation rarely seen. To visit FAM is to take the first step into a history never before told and a present that celebrates the distinct and modern cultures of the 39 Oklahoma Tribal Nations and their futures. The following is a guided walkthrough of the completed portions of the FAM opening to the public this month. Visitors are immediately invited into the world of the 39 Tribal Nations currently calling Oklahoma home with a stunning stainless steel sculpture, Touch to Above, by Cherokee father and son team Demos Glass and Bill Glass, Jr. The arch sits in the middle of the circular courtyard and, like the building itself, faces east. Soaking up the first light as the sun rises, its beauty reflects a prayer to Creator, whom many Nations believe resides in the east. Cultural touchstones like this throughout the museum serve not only to educate but differentiate among the cultures and beliefs unique to each tribe. With “This has always been Indian Country...” emblazoned in stark white letters on an inky black background introducing the Land Acknowledgement, it’s made clear what one can expect as they move through the lives of its original inhabitants. The Crossroads welcomes visitors with the two story high work Indigenous Brilliance by Cherokee artist Joseph
Erb. Using compelling illustrations that seem to dance across the walls the piece brings to life the story of The First American Peoples, setting the tone for the foray into the untold histories and modern accomplishments of the Indigenous Nations. The Origins Theater is housed in an enormous recreation of Caddo pottery representing Sky, Earth, and Water, conceived by artist Jeri Redcorn, Caddo/ Potawatomi, and brought to life with the assistance of Diné Marwin Begaye and Muscogee Creek Starr Hardridge. The theater features the creation stories of the Pawnee, Euchre, Caddo, and Otoe-Missouria. Though each Nation has varied cosmology, these origin stories tell of stars/sky, water, and Earth, near-universal elements contained in the various traditions. The two main exhibitions, OKLA HOMMA and Winiko: Life of an Object, work in tandem to address misconceptions and distortions that have over time been woven into truths that make up the DNA of the United States. Each takes you on a journey of the Peoples and their cultures, allowing for each Nation to be presented as they truly are as opposed to how they are believed to be. In the Tribal Nations Gallery OKLA HOMMA, Choctaw for Red People, is an interactive, multimedia experience that transports guests into a detailed timeline of the Tribal Nations. Ancient Roots: We Were Always Here begins before colonization with a portrayal of life as it was, vibrant Nations each with their own cultures, traditions, and histories. As you move through the exhibit the lush greenery of pre-contact slowly drains of color as you enter Uprooted: Ripped From Our Homelands. During this dark period, the First Americans were forcibly removed from their ancestral lands. In respect to Native oral traditions, the stories of removal are told by Elders whose family histories are colored by the loss of sacred lands and Knowledge Keepers as colonization marched westward, leaving devastation in its wake. Even as their lands and lives were taken the Nations persevered. Transplanted: Growing Strong emphasizes the renewal of the spirit of the Nations who success-
fully re-established themselves and takes us to today where their cultures flourish as the Nations grow ever stronger with the restoration of their sovereignty and self determination. Living Landscapes addresses misrepresentation by immersing the viewer into a modern Native experience. Stereotypical images lose their power as First Americans Artist creations illustrate how they see themselves, as they are taken on a road trip in a Pow Wow van that showcases dances from tribes across the state, and as they are given the opportunity to learn about outstanding Native athletes and participate in traditional games such as Handgame and Chunkey. A tribute to their Warrior spirit concludes the exhibition with a tribute to Native service members, many of whom fought bravely for a country that refused them citizenship. It features a database of soldiers who served that will become a living monument as more people are added, their bravery and service at last recognized. Winiko: Life of an Object sees the return of items held by the Smithsonian collected from 39 tribes in Oklahoma in the early 1900s for the first time in 100 years. Located in the second floor mezzanine, Winiko not only allows attendees to marvel at the beauty and craftsmanship of Native Nations but tells the story of why each item is significant to a specific tribe, how it was created, and the course it took from creation to collection to a return to Oklahoma. In doing so it demonstrates the harm done by cultural appropriation which can be addressed through respectful cultural exchange. There are various attractions that honor the tribes by shining a spotlight on their lives’ truths. The Hall of The People is a massive structure based upon a Wichita Grass House. The 10-foot columns that grace the Hall pay tribute to those who experienced forced removal, each representing the brutal ten miles a day the Nations were subjected to during The Long Walk. The Remembrance Wall, constructed of Mskwabek stones named for a renowned Wabashni Potawatomi warrior, recognizes the original stewards of the land that became Oklahoma. It also serves as a sobering reminder of
the loss of those forcibly removed to Indian Territory, many of whom did not survive the journey as well as a celebration of the peoples who fought to survive so their descendants might live. The FAM mound is an incredible reconstruction of the Mississippian Mound Builders architecture. Several of the tribes forcibly removed are the descendants of this culture. The Mound and the adjacent Festival Plaza give way to an amazing view of downtown OKC, an intersection of the historical and the modern reflecting the parallel of the lives of the Nations. The museum also contains a fine dining restaurant called The 39 that features Tribal inspired dishes made with local and Indigenous sourced ingredients, while the Arbor Cafe has a more relaxed atmosphere, offering traditionally based foods and specialty coffees. The FAMstore features Native artists exclusive to First Americans Museum, their creations and educational materials. FAM will be offering family friendly educational workshops, activities and installations offering a variety of handson experiences that will both educate and enrich. The FAM Theater will present live performances and film, while the XChange Theater will present demonstrations and video presentations in addition to hosting special evening events. The First Americans Museum grand opening is Sept. 18 and 19, beginning with The Procession of Nations followed by entertainment and activities throughout the day. Tickets are $5 for those over age 3 and must be purchased prior to the event. For more information about First Americans Museum, scan the QR code with your smart phone.
ART S & CULTURE OKGA Z E T TE .COM | S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1
PLEASE NOMINATE KOSU RADIO “OKLAHOMA’S SMARTEST FASHION STATEMENT.” Introducing our all-new, 100% exclusive, charcoal black triblend KOSU Sunset T-Shirt! Designed by Oklahoma artist and Tumbleweeds All The Way Down host Jack Fowler, it can be yours for a monthly gift of $15 during KOSU’s Fall Membership Drive, happening right now! Call 855.808.5678!
S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1 | OKGA Z E T TE .COM
Pride on 39th By Miguel Rios
Despite COVID-19 and literal roadblocks due to street enhancements, OKC Pride Inc. will celebrate Pride on 39th Street this month. The three-day festival runs from noon to midnight Sept. 24-26, culminating with the parade at 4 p.m. Sept. 26. The COVID-19 pandemic made their 2020 plans impossible, and street enhancements along the city’s LGBTQ+ district delayed this year’s celebrations, which are typically in June. But Pride on 39th organizers hope this year’s event will be one of the best they have ever hosted. Tessa White, OKC Pride Inc. president, said she was unsure they would be able to pull off a high-caliber Pride this year. The group has been dealing with a pandemic, an ongoing lawsuit involving Oklahoma City Pride Alliance, and recently a restructuring of their own board after the former board president stepped down for personal reasons. “I knew we were going to have a Pride, but I was skeptical at the level of quality that we were going to be able to have. I didn’t think we had enough time,” she said. “We set our goals very high, and our board of directors and our committee members not only met those goals, but far exceeded them. We are now fully expecting that this is truly going to be the very best Pride event Oklahoma City has ever held on 39th Street.” The Equality Concert kicks off at 5 p.m. Friday on the main stage with drag performers and talent from the various local gay bars. Headliner Todrick Hall is set to take the stage at 11 p.m. Hall gained popularity after making it to the semi-finals on American Idol and creating viral Youtube videos. Since then, he has appeared on RuPaul’s Drag Race as a choreographer and judge and starred in Broadway’s Kinky Boots. “The main stage will actually be erected on 39th Street,” White said. “Almost even with Tramps, even towards The Boom a little bit. It’s going to go across 39th Street, and it’s going to be facing east. So 39th Street from that point, all the way to Penn. Avenue, you’re going to have a clear view of the stage.”
There will be another stage in the Angle’s parking lot along with a full bar and several food trucks along the back. Local drag performers, bands, and DJs make up the entertainment throughout the three days. There will also be a kid’s zone in the parking lot of the Diversity Center. The street enhancements made to 39th Street District are not complete, but White said they don’t expect construction to interfere in any way. “The construction company has stayed in close contact with us, and we have been assured that the street will be ready for a festival to take place,” she said. The parade along 39th Street starts at 4 p.m. Sunday on Classen Blvd. and ends at Youngs Blvd. This year’s parade grand marshals are Donnie Wilson and Miss Diamond Sameek Neal. White said they have several parade entries, but are hoping to get more. “We have several parade entries that range from nonprofit, students, commercial, and political entries,” White said. “However, we are really hoping that our community will step up and join us in the parade. It’s kind of tough with COVID right now.”
COVID Precautions Pride on 39th will take place as COVID19 case numbers continue to rise due to variants. Oklahoma County has high community transmission, according to the Centers for Disease Control COVID19 tracker. White said they plan to take many precautions. “All of our committee members, all of our volunteers will be COVID vaccinated,” White said. “We would have liked to have put in a mask mandate, however, more than half of our festival is held on city-owned property. We are not allowed to have a mask mandate on city property … but we are strongly urging everyone to please wear a mask. We are strongly urging everyone who attends to be vaccinated.” White said OKC Pride Inc. has been collaborating with the Oklahoma City-County Department of Health, which will be at the event providing
HIV and COVID-19 testing, and offering free COVID-19 vaccines from 1-5 p.m. on Saturday. “It’s absolutely tearing me apart inside. My stomach turns every day for it because if we ever lost one of our community members, I don’t know how I’m ever going to live with myself,” White said. “The safety of our people is of the utmost concern, and if anyone has any type of reservation at all about attending Pride because of health concerns, we would urge them not to attend.” Vendor booths will also be spaced according to proper social distancing guidelines, White said. The event’s COVID-19 rules will be posted throughout the festival.
L G B T Q+ S p a c e “There’s No Place Like Home: Respecting Our Past, Welcoming Our Future” is this year’s theme, coming from suggestions via Facebook. White said that the idea of home can be triggering for LGBTQ+ people, but the theme aims to highlight the importance of affirming places. “There’s no place like home’ can be like nails on a chalkboard especially for somebody like me. I haven’t talked to my parents in years,” she said. “But it’s referring to our wonderful place in the gay district ... and the chosen family that we have within that district and within the gay, lesbian, trans community.” White said the second part of the theme is important to reflect on the hardships of the LGBTQ+ community throughout history and the future that is to come. “Because of the fight and the courage that all of our people had in the past, we are now able to sit here and look forward to a wonderful future where gay, lesbian, trans people have it easier today than they did in the past,” she said. “We look forward to continually having our place maintained in this society.” This will be the district’s 33rd annual Pride event, but White is actually OKC Pride Inc.’s first transgender president ever. “It’s been a heartwarming experience,” she said. “I have gotten a tremen
Tessa White, OKC Pride Inc. president | Photo provided
dous amount of feedback from my transgender counterparts that are absolutely thrilled to see one of their own as president of OKC Pride. All board members, committee members, everybody has been very supportive.” She hopes attendees will feel a similar sense of affirmation when they attend Pride. “This Pride event is going to be a great way to make new connections. It is also going to serve as an inspiration for those who want to come out and haven’t made that decision yet,” she said. “I truly do this for our community members that have not come out yet. I want them to see what a wonderful family they have and what a wonderful future they have in store.” For more information about Pride on 39th, scan the QR code with your smart phone.
ART S & CULTURE OKGA Z E T TE .COM | S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1
CALENDAR are events recommended by Oklahoma Gazette editorial staff members For full calendar listings, go to okgazette.com.
HAPPENINGS 2021 Oklahoma State Fair One of the top State Fairs in North America, the Oklahoma State Fair showcases our state’s agriculture, manufacturing and commerce. It’s everything from family entertainment and educational exhibits to exciting competitions and just plain fun! Adults (ages 12+): $12 Children (ages 6-11): $6 Children (ages 5 and under): FREE! $6-12, age 5 and under is FREE, Sept. 16-26, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. OKC Fairgrounds, 3001 General Pershing Blvd, 405-9486700, okstatefair.com. Sept. 16 - 26 23rd Annual Aids Walk The 23rd Annual AIDS Walk is returning to its original location at the Myriad Gardens! All members of the community are invited to join for the one-mile walk and family-friendly festival featuring local entertainment, vendors, and health educators on North Devon Lawn of the Myriad Gardens., Sun., Sept. 19. Myriad Botanical Gardens, 301 W. Reno Ave., 405-445-7080, facebook.com.
Festival Amistad 2021 The City of Warr Acres, Putnam City High School and Hola Oklahoma Media are presenting the 3rd Annual FESTIVAL AMISTAD 2021 to celebrate the HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH. The Festival Amistad 2021 is the largest Hispanic Festival in the North of the City and will have a Parade of Floats and delegations starting at Victory Church at 11 am, towards the PCHS Parking lot, following by a presentation of music, dances, food vendors and booths. Call 405 436 3099 FREE, Sat., Sept. 25, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Putnam City High School, 5300 NW 50th St., 405436-3099, putnamcityschools.org. SAT, Sept. 25
Make Ready Market Join us at the Make Ready Market, an outdoor market located in Midtown OKC. We will have tons of vintage, beautiful pottery, locally made clothing, jewelry, skin care, flowers, soap, plants, and original art! Plus food trucks and live music, it’s a fun time. Bring a friend and see you there! Follow us @makereadymarket for more info. FREE, fourth Saturday of every month, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. through Nov. 27. Make Ready Buildings, 220 NW 13th St., 4053990097. SAT, Sept. 25
SUN, Sept. 19
Pride and Prejudice
Night Market Each Join Oklahoma Shakespeare for a pastoral presentation of Jane Austen’s month through October, come novel, Pride & Prejudice, lovingly presented in the Shakespeare Gardens, this fall. An evening of regency out to Scissortail Park and shop from approximately 50 local ven- fun fit for the whole family! The beautiful Shakespeare Gardens offers both lawn & table seating. Celebrate dors throughout the Park during Night live theatre under the stars!, Thursdays-Sundays. through Oct. 3. Shakespeare on Paseo, 2920 Paseo St., Market at Scissortail Park., Find art, 405-235-3700, oklahomashakespeare.org. BEGINNING SEPTEMBER 16 | Bianca Bulgarelli as home décor, jewelry, candles, antiques, Elizabeth Bennet and Kamron McClure as Mr. Darcy / Photo provided bath and body products, and unique treasures you won’t find at an average gift shop. This is a great opportunity to FRI, Sept. 17 4058163527, westendistrictokc.com. SAT, Sept. 18 VISUAL ARTS support local businesses in a safe, outdoor environAutomobile Alley’s Art of Beer Join ment. Food trucks and bar service will be available Amshot’s exhibITion: Everything Is Interestthe district for Automobile Alley’s Art FOOD as well as live entertainment., Fri., Sept. 17. Scissortail ing ExhibITion: Everything Is Interesting, featuring of Beer. The event is FREE and familyPark, 300 SW Seventh St., 405-445-7080, scissortailthe artwork of local artist and printmaker Emma Halfway to St. Paddy’s Day Join Core4 friendly. Art programming for families and friends park.org/nightmarket. FRI, Sept. 17 Difani, will open at amshot, 428 Dean A. McGee Ave. Brewing as they bring in the McTeggart will be provided by Oklahoma Contemporary and in downtown Oklahoma City, on Thursday, Sept. 23 Irish Dancers of OKC to perform. Live Music OKC Brew Tours Join us every Friday evening will feature a community mural wall, chalk art, and from 5pm to 8pm. The gallery is free to attend. For from The Ravens Three and Blutic. Food from Callaand Saturday day on OKC Brew Tours! The ultimate design your own drink label. Hang out in the shade, a $5 donation, guests 21 and over can enjoy light han’s Chicago Dogs and plenty of Emerald City Irish craft beer experience. Take a ride in the bus as we play lawn games, make art, and enjoy plenty of hors-d’oeuvres, wine, and local beer from sponsor Dry on tap as well., Sat., Sept. 18. Core4 Brewing, 7 N. visit three local breweries within the OKC metro area beer from local Auto Alley breweries., Sat., Sept. 25. Equity Brewing Co. The opening will benefit Cavett Lee Ave, 4056204513, facebook.com. SAT, Sept. 18 where we will try and explore multiple tasters at each Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center, 11 NW 11th St., Kids, which provides free camps and year-round prostop as well as take a behind the scenes tour and learn 405-951-0000, automobilealley.org/event/art-ofOSU-OKC Farmers Market at Scissortail Park grams for children with chronic and life-threatening how beer is made. Its a perfect way to get to know beer. SAT, Sept. 25 Oklahoma City’s largest outdoor market features illnesses. For more information, visit amshot.com/ new people and drink OKC’s tastiest beer offerings! an all-made and grown-in Oklahoma producer-only exhibition. $0-$5, Thu., Sept. 23, 5-8 p.m. amshot, Creative Market Join ARTSPACE at Untitled at the $69.50, Fridays, 6-9 p.m. and Saturdays, 1-4 p.m. marketplace providing access to more fresh products 428 Dean A McGee Ave., 4054186282, amshot.com/ next Creative Market on September 18th, from 4-7 PM. through Jan. 31. Core4 Brewing, 7 N. Lee Ave, 405to serve the community. Located at the corner of exhibition. THU, Sept. 23 Over 60 local creatives will take over both parking lots, 822-0285, okcbrewtour.com. Fridays & Saturdays Oklahoma City Boulevard and South Robinson and Nia Moné will enchant everyone with her musical Art Moves Art Moves artists have adjusted from Avenue, the Scissortail Park Farmers Market will be Raising Backyard Hens Have you ever thought stylings. The market is mainly located outdoors so that daily downtown performances to online streaming. open, rain or shine, every Saturday from 9 a.m. until 1 about keeping backyard chickens? Hens are fun and attendees may enjoy the ART 365 exhibition in both Help us support our local artist by joining us weekp.m. through October. Scissortail Park, 300 SW Seveasy pets to include in your life, and they lay eggs, galleries indoors. Come prepared to buy tasty drinks days at Arts Council Oklahoma City’s facebook page enth St., 405-445-7080, cissortailpark.org/osu-okctoo! Come meet a couple of local hens and learn from the bar!, Mon., Sept. 27. Artspace at Untitled, 1 NE for live-streaming performances and demonstrations farmers-market-at-scissortail-park. SATURDAYS everything you need to know about raising and takThird St., 405-815-9995, 1ne3.org/calendar/2021/8/24/ from artist homes or studios!, Art Moves is an Arts ing care of your own flock., Instructor: Sara Braden creative-market. MON, Sept. 27 Council OKC initiative that provides free arts events has been sharing her backyard PERFORMING ARTS each workday from Noon-1:00. Events previously with chickens since 2009., $10 took place in various downtown locations and may Dope Poetry Night Dope Poetry Night at the per workshop, $15 per couple/ include artist demonstrations or musical performancIce Event Center Bar and Grill is every Wednesday pair. Or volunteer on a Saturday es. The daily line-up features a wide range of artistic starting at 7:30 p.m. Sign-ups begin at 7 p.m.Only morning, and get in free!, Sat., mediums including musical and theater performancthe first 25 poets., Come to experience a place where Sept. 25, 11 a.m.-noon. Comes, live art demonstrations, short film selections, and you can be you unapologetically, a place where your monWealth Urban Farms, 3310 more, Mondays-Fridays, noon. artscouncilokc.com/ voice and presence matter, a place where you’re acN. Olie Ave., 405-524-1864, art-moves. WEEKDAYS cepted and loved, where smiles, laughter, thoughts, commonwealthurbanfarms. and feelings are shared, and it’s all free. Just rememcom/garden-school. SAT, Chakaia Booker: Shaved Portions Commisber to wear a mask. Ice Event Center & Grill, 1148 NE Sept. 25 sioned specifically for Campbell Art Park, Shaved 36th St., 405-208-4240, facebook.com/Ice-EventPortions is among the most recent additions to Stargazing in the Park Join Center-Grill-384104648334867. WEDNESDAYS Booker’s body of work marked by her distinct ability the Oklahoma City Astronomy to radically transform her signature material — The Red Lamp by Hilliard Booth 3rd Act Club on Friday, September 17 salvaged rubber tires — into an incredible array of Theatre Company presents The Red Lamp by Hilliard from 8pm-10pm for Stargazing biomorphic sculptures. Free, Through Aug. 31, 2022. Booth, directed by Christine Jolly and starring local in the Park returning to ScisOklahoma Contemporary Arts Center, 11 NW 11th St., talent Aaron Bates, David Patterson, Dana Billingsley, sortail Park!, The Oklahoma 405-951-0000, oklahomacontemporary.org/exhibiAllison Sugimoto, Carold McDonald, and Matthew City Astronomy Club will have tions/upcoming/chakaia-booker-shaved-portions. Moreillon. This fast and furious farce involves a lamp telescopes set up on the Love’s Through August 2022 from South America that is supposed to bring good Travel Stops Stage & Great Lawn luck to whoever lights it, but when each character for the public to view the night Crystal Z Campbell: Flight Reserve your free tries to light it for a different reason, their actions sky (or you can bring your own timed ticket to experience the inaugural exhibition lead to complications, a few mistaken identities, and telescope)., This event is FREE in our Artist-in-Residence Studio and Gallery. Using some delightfully unexpected outcomes!, All perand open to the public. Free, light, sound and digital film projection, Flight exformances are live, with masks required for cast and Fri., Sept. 17, 8-10 p.m. Scissortail plores the physical, architectural and cultural residue audiences. September 26 is a streaming event only. Park, 300 SW Seventh St., 405of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre into the present. $25 with discounts available, Fridays, Saturdays, 8-10 445-7080, scissortailpark.org. Timed with the 100-year commemoration of the p.m. and Sundays, 2:30-4:30 p.m. through Sept. 26. FRI, Sept. 17 massacre, Flight incorporates archival material with 3rd Act Theatre Company, 12040 N May Ave., 405digital video, digitized 35-mm film footage, threeThird Saturdays in WesTen 593-8093, 3rdacttheatreco.com. DATES THROUGH channel sound, and vinyl. The artist provides multiple District The WesTen District SEPTEMBER 26 points of entry and angles of refraction, offering welcomes you to Third Saturdays an unfixed sense of what is varying parts history, Art Afloat in WesTen with a MadPotter Open impressions, analysis, and reverie., This exhibition is ACTIVE House, Council Grove Historically is bringing local artists together to take over the Bricktown made possible by a grant from the Mid-America Arts Local Tour at Castle Falls, and a Yoga Tuesdays an all-levels class; bring your own Canal every Thursday night, to be called the Art Afloat Free timed ticket required., Mondays, Wednesdays, Marking Tree Open House. For comwater and yoga mat, 5:45 p.m.-7 p.m. Tuesdays. Fridays-Sundays, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. and Tuesdays, 11 a.m.Showboat Concert Series., Thursdays. Bricktown Water Taxi, plete details visit www.westendisMyriad Botanical Gardens, 301 W. Reno Ave., 4059 p.m. through Oct. 26. Oklahoma Contemporary trictokc.com/event. Free, Sat., Sept. 111 S. Mickey Mantle Drive, bricktownwatertaxi.com. 445-7080, myriadgardens.com. TUESDAYS Arts Center, 11 NW 11th St., 405-951-0000, oklahoma18, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. WesTen District, THURSDAYS Photo Provided contemporary.org Through Ocotber 26 Northwest 10th Street Corridor, Arts District 3rd Fridays Every 3rd Friday, Arts District invites you to take a stroll through the district. There will be treats, drinks, giveaways, art, live music and more. Come experience all the wonderful small businesses that make up this walkable downtown district!, third Friday of every month. through Nov. 19. Arts District, 211 N. Robinson Ave., 405-235-3500, artsdistrictokc.com/third-fridays.
Art Afloat Showboat Concert Series
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Fritz Scholder: Beyond Stereotypes After relocating to Santa Fe, New Mexico, for a teaching position, American artist Fritz Scholder (Luiseño) stated he saw one too many over-romanticized and generalized depictions of Indigenous people “looking at the sunset.” With his Indian series, started in 1967, Scholder sought to replace the tourist-approved narratives perpetuated by white artists with the realities he witnessed every day. By combining realism and spirituality with vivid colors and expressive brushstrokes, Scholder created radical new imagery of modern-day Indigenous life., Wednesdays-Sundays. through Nov. 7. Oklahoma City Museum of Art, 415 Couch Drive, 405236-3100, okcmoa.com. Through November 7 Oklahoma Art Guild Fall Member Show Oklahoma Art Guild will hold their annual member show in the center court of Penn Square Mall Thursday September 23rd through Sunday September 26th., Sept. 23-26. Penn Square Mall, 1901 Northwest Expressway, 405-841-2696, simon.com/mall/penn-square-mall. THU-SUN, Sept. 23 - 26
OVAC Art 365 Oklahoma City Exhibition Every three years, the Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition (OVAC) hosts the highly competitive program, Art 365, in which five Oklahomabased creative proposals are selected to complete innovative artwork in consultation with a nationally recognized curator. In an unprecedented model for the region, the artists receive an honorarium of $12,000. Over the course of the last year, these artists have created a body of work that will culminate with exhibitions in both Tulsa and Oklahoma City., Through Sept. 18. Artspace at Untitled, 1 NE Third St., 405-815-9995, 1ne3. org. Through Sept. 18 The Painters of Pompeii This historic presentation of the art of painting in ancient Rome will be presented exclusively at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art before returning to Europe., Wednesdays-Sundays. through Oct. 17. Oklahoma City Museum of Art, 415 Couch Drive, 405-236-3100, okcmoa.com. Through October 17 A room with a View: Scenes of the Italian Countryside Artists from around the world have long been captured by the enduring appeal of the Italian countryside. Its sweeping vistas, at times sprinkled with ancient ruins, make for an enticing subject for artists in a variety of mediums. American artists in particular traveled to Italy throughout the nineteenth century to study not only the great masterpieces of ancient and Renaissance art, but also to sketch and paint the campagna, or countryside, basked in a beautiful glow., Wednesdays-Sundays. through Nov. 7. Oklahoma City Museum of Art, 415 Couch Drive, 405236-3100, okcmoa.com/visit/events/room-with-a-view.
Visit okgazette.com/Events/AddEvent to submit your event. Submissions must be For OKG received by Oklahoma live music Gazette no later than noon on Wednesday see page 33 seven days before the desired publication date. Submissions run as space allows, although we strive to make the listings as inclusive as possible.
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We Believed in the Sun Honoring the significant legacies of the Civil Rights Movement in Oklahoma City, We Believed in the Sun pairs Ron Tarver, a nationally recognized artist born in Oklahoma, with Ebony Iman Dallas, an emerging Oklahoma artist. The exhibition is organized in consultation with Advisory Council members from the Clara Luper Center for Civil Rights and the Oklahoma Historical Society. We Believed in the Sun will illuminate first-person accounts of the Civil Rights Movement in Oklahoma from the 1950s and 1960s that may be overlooked aspects of the larger history of Civil Rights and that resonate with present-day African-American communities in Oklahoma. Free timed ticket required., Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays-Sundays, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. through Sept. 20. Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center, 11 NW 11th St., 405-951-0000, oklahomacontemporary.org Through September 20
Women of the Banjo A special exhibit at the American Banjo Museum Women of the Banjo chronicles the contributions of women to the colorful past, vibrant present, and unlimited future of the banjo. From prominent contemporary performers such as Alison Brown and Rhiannon Giddens to pop icons Taylor Swift, Dolly Parton and many others, historic insights, instruments, stage attire, and a glimpse of ever-changing fashion trends all help in the telling of this important aspect of banjo history., Through May 31, 2022. American Banjo Museum, 9 E. Sheridan Ave., 405-604-2793, americanbanjomuseum.com/currentexhibits/special-exhibits. Through May 2022 Women’s Rights Are Human Rights Women’s Rights Are Human Rights: International Posters on Gender-Based Inequality, Violence, and Discrimination Free, Mondays-Thursdays, 12-4 p.m. through Nov. 18. Melton Gallery, 100 N. University drive, 4059746358, MELTONGALLERY.COM. Through November 18
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Community Conversation | On the Shoulders of Giants
Join Oklahoma Contemporary for “On the Shoulders of Giants” an interactive community conversation with activist and Nappy Roots Books owner Camille Landry. Guests include Bruce Fisher of the Oklahoma Historical Society and artists Skip Hill and Jasmine Jones., Following the discussion, Hill and Jones will lead participants in a collage workshop. Be sure to bring your photos and 2-D material to use in collages. Located in the dance studio at Oklahoma Contemporary, the event will begin at 7 p.m. and end at 8:30 p.m. FRI, SEP 3 Mama’s Boy by Skip Hil/ Provided O KG A Z E T T E . C O M | S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1
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Chris “The God MC” McCain | Photo provided
Hip-hop Artist Chris “The God MC” Cain Arrives at 89th Street By Evan Jarvicks
If hip-hop is a religion, few practice it as devoutly as Chris “The God MC” Cain. It’s more than the congregational services led by an emcee and DJ at a venue. It’s more than the teachings laid to wax, passed down from generation to generation. It’s arguably even more than the artistic elements of the culture itself. That’s because, as a religion, hip-hop is a way of life, and The God MC lives it every day. A born-and-raised classic of Oklahoma City’s storied Eastside, Cain has been spitting his provocative mind since the days of selling CDs in the streets, yet in 2021, followers say he’s hitting his best stride yet. With the release of a new studio album, Arrived, and as a member of Fire in Little Africa, the acclaimed Oklahoma hip-hop collective recently signed to Motown Records, the rapper has had a banner year. The streak continues with an upcoming live performance on Sept. 25 called “Arrived: Now That I’m Here” with none other than Grammy-nominated Roc Nation enigma Jay Electronica. “Me co-headlining a show with Jay Electronica is God letting me know that it’s time,” said Cain. “Jay Electronica is immortal, like myself. Our music is not
trendy, and it will never die. Create undeniable heartfelt art, and it will be a force that’ll find its place with the universe’s assistance.” If The God MC’s words sound lofty, they are just a taste of the power that bursts from his intensely authentic verses. With a tough-love cadence, he speaks on deep life values through the lenses of family, divinity, and hip-hop culture, crafting verbal punches that challenge the mind and distill the spirit. As he doesn’t squander his talents on material possessions or clout-chasing, it follows that he wouldn’t dabble in the aesthetics or style of artists who do. Where much present-day hip-hop music boasts autotuned triplet flows and hyped-up trap production, Cain continues to favor organic, unhurried instrumentals with minimal beats that allow his voice to be omnipresent. Here, it’s the lack of technological dependency that serves as a litmus test to his abilities, not unlike an unplugged rock performance, but the approach carries further by doubling down on his no-filter lyrics with a literal lack of filter. The God MC is as real as they come. “I want my Eastside people as well as all my people in every hood in America to know that you can be dope as fuck and
Tickets: b e a f at her, husba nd, hold your/our women on the highest pedestal, speak unity, self-love, and have the realest raps in the world without fake opps and gunplay,” Cain said. On the new fullleng t h a lbu m , which follows a slew of standalone EPs, Chris “The God MC” Cain continues to perfect a delicate balance of paternal sensitivity and razor-sharp Eastside lyricism. He is accompanied by solid features from fellow
Arrived: Now That I’m Here Jay Electronica + Chris “The God MC” Cain
7 p.m. Sept 25 89th Street, 8911 N. Western Ave. $40
Oklahoma artists like Grand National, Steph Simon, Chris Savage, and Ray June, but it’s his solo tracks that tend to speak loudest. The centerpiece of Arrived for many listeners is “Ode to Love”, a percussionless, keyboard-adorned track that uniquely captures the internal battle of a father wanting to protect his daughter and needing to let her experience the world. The way Cain expresses his devotion through a cautionary refrain is shocking at first, but as it repeats, it
takes on a plethora of emotions between the lines of the verses’ timelapse framework. In the context of the album, which features a real audio recording of Cain’s daughter as a preschooler in the opening track, it hits an especially poignant note. An entire essay could be written about how its central four words carry so much meaning. Cain is a father figure in less literal ways, too. While he has made a point to feature his family on his album covers and promotional materials, he also made sure to include some neighborhood youth on the photo cover for Arrived. This is because, in addition to his longtime presence in Oklahoma City hip-hop as a culture builder, he also mentors youth in his area in other ways, some of whom are featured on the album art. “I mentor kids that I teach basketball in my neighborhood and my old school, Millwood,” Cain said. “I teach them basketball and life lessons; I have handson experience in both. I’ve been in pressure situations with the game on the line, and I’ve had a gun in my face with my life on the line.” It’s noteworthy, then, that The God MC’s upcoming date with Jay Electronica is slated for the newly renovated 89th Street, one of the city’s only all-ages venues for local hip-hop. “I think any concert venue should be all ages with a full bar because people wanna have a good time,” Cain said, “ and as far as my community, I wanna talk to the kids and parents at the same time. I love my people.” 89th Street is also ideal for its sense of history, as it has taken on multiple lives under different names. One of these was The Conservatory, where Cain honed much of his live chops years ago. The return to the same building adds further weight to this recurring theme of arrival. Reaching a destination, however, does not presume it’s a final one. For The God MC, hip-hop is not music to be made but culture to be lived, so the present is not a plateau, but the latest milestone in a lifelong journey into his destiny. “My album is called Arrived,” Cain said, “because I’m 90 percent here as a man, husband, father, son, friend, and-last but not least--an overall artist. I say ‘90 percent’ because I will grow as long as I’m living. I will evolve on Earth as long as the sun revolves around it.”
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Chris “The God MC” McCain | Photo provided
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Matching the vibe
Oklahoma City composer Nikolas Thompson scores gig scoring festival pick. By KM Bramlett
ikolas Thompson is a professional in all things music, but scoring films is what’s currently keeping his hands busy. A native Oklahoman, his professional path has landed him in San Francisco, Tulsa, and Seoul, South Korea. His extensive résumé includes a variety of titles: record producer, recording engineer, and guitarist and songwriter for his band Kite Flying Robot. On top of all that, he composes music for commercials and films. His most recent film score is for “AllIn,” an official selection for the Pasadena International Film Festival (PIFF), Sept 11. In addition to the honor of being chosen by PIFF, “All-In” recently won “Best Nevada Film” at the Cordillera International Film Festival in Las Vegas.
“All-In,” written and directed by Jesserey Tugas, tells the true story of a Las Vegas bartender’s search for a man who abandoned his own daughter in a casino lounge. As a kid, Nikolas was captivated by Danny Elfman’s music for the film Edward Scissorhands. “It was the first time that music from a movie really shook me, and I had my mom buy me the soundtrack, which I still have 30 years later,” Thompson said. “I was probably the only kid in my neighborhood that had so many movie soundtracks--Indiana Jones, E.T., Fargo, Batman Returns, etc. I played guitar in rock bands growing up, and figured writing movie scores was way out of my skill set, which it was at the time.” In 2012, Thompson decided to move to South Korea to enjoy the adventure of expat life and pay down debts while teaching English. What was a one-year plan to live a nd work t here became a four-year stint that included work in the expat music and theatre scene in Seoul. After performing in bands for over a decade, he stumbled into a chance to realize his life-long dream of professional composing. He was appr oac he d by a media company in South Korea that was founded by the same person who had directed some music v ideos for K ite Flying Robot. “My first rea l scoring gig was for the Marriott Hotel in South Korea in 2013. It was an opportunity, trial of sorts, to see if I could do it. Luckily the media company liked the music, I got over my initial nerves, and I’ve worked with the same media company a dozen times since,” Thompson said. Nikolas Thompson | His history of creatPhoto Doug Schwarz
S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1 | OKGA Z E T TE .COM MUS IC
A still frame from the “Fire with Me” music video by Kite Flying Robot | Photo Nick Neon / Daniel Smukala
ing synthesizer music meant he’d been dubbed stylistically as “the 80s guy,” but he craved more variety in his musical styles. After returning to Oklahoma in 2016, Thompson decided to dig deeper into the technical side of music composition and enrolled in a summer music theory course, then completing a master’s in music composition at Oklahoma City University. This training expanded the possibilities of his sonic palette and prepared him to write for a wider range of musical instruments and ensembles, including orchestras. “I think every piece of music needs one great element to spark excitement and then build from. If I can get a good chord structure, or melody, or texture, or rhythm to start with, the other elements tend to fall into place. That initial idea gives the musical piece its identity. So, in the beginning I try to start writing more from the gut than the brain, like come up with a dozen crazy unique ideas in hopes one of them is actually worth pursuing.” After that, he determines the other elements, like arrangement ideas, exact orchestration, texture, etc. Thompson has a creative background, and that education enhances his scores whether it’s “just a palette of sounds, whether it’s strings or synths or thrift store Casio sounds or whatever.” He has pretty much everything he needs in his home studio, including musical instruments, a music library of reference books, amplifiers, and the software to bring it all together in recording and creating musical scores (sheet music) for orchestras. Through the collaborative process on film or commercials, Thompson prefers to be included in pre-production, but it’s more often the case that he’s hired after filming, in post-production. “They’ll send me rough edits for the scenes they want music in, and I’ll sketch out some ideas for them to listen to, which is usually trying to match the ‘vibe’ more than anything. Sometimes directors have a very clear idea about what they want, but often they don’t.” He enjoys working with filmmakers in either case and truly appreciates when they understand the
immense amount of work that goes into composing music. When filmmakers have a good sense of the complexity and amount of work that goes into composing music, he’s more likely to get the appropriate amount of time to create something he’s proud of that fits the film. “For ‘All-In,’ the director Jesserey Tugas wanted music that was classic Western, with a tinge of Vegas flavor but with a modern film score feel. We emailed ideas back and forth and ultimately the music included strings, loungey-sounding electric piano, guitars, jazzy drums, hand percussion, and solo violin which was performed by OKC-based violinist Jose Batty. I used some modern sound design to keep it sounding current,” he said. Thompson is currently in the middle of writing a couple new film scores and composing for art projects that are currently under wraps. He’s also nearly finished producing an album by OKCbased singer Cheyanne Marie. A single and music video for the project will be released soon. “Some songs I helped compose and some songs I am just producing and mixing. She’s an excellent singer and performer, and we’re excited to release it,” he said. Once all that is completed, he’ll be able to get back to a personal project— the third Kite Flying Robot album, which has been on the back burner. For more information about Nikolas Thompson, scan the QR code with your smart phone.
These are events recommended by Oklahoma Gazette editorial staff members. For full calendar listings, go to okgazette.com.
THURSDAY, SEP. 16 Acoustic Open Mic, Core4 Brewing. AJR, The Zoo Amphitheatre. The Oak Ridge Boys, OKC Fairgrounds. Sylvan Esso, Cain’s Ballroom. Sylvan Esso Toadies w/ Reverend Horton Heat, Diamond Ballroom.
FRIDAY, SEP. 17 Alabama, Paycom Center. With special guest Marshall Tucker Band
Dion Warlocke/ Apples of Eden/ Firebad, Blue Note. Earth, Wind & Fire, River Spirit Casino. Midas 13, Bandees. Sawyer Brown, OKC Fairgrounds.
SATURDAY, SEP. 18 Born & Raised Music Festival, Pryor Creek Music
Acoustic Open Mic, Core4 Brewing.
Dangerously Biased/ Stone Tide/ Merry Walkers, Blue Note.
Jameson Rodgers, OKC Fairgrounds.
Jackyl, OKC Fairgrounds. Starshine Spotlights - Live Music during Weekend Brunch, Aurora Breakfast Bar & Backyard.
SUNDAY, SEP. 19 BeatleMania Live!, OKC Fairgrounds. Born & Raised Music Festival, Pryor Creek Music Festival Grounds. Hosty, The Deli. Electric Starshine Spotlights - Live Music during Weekend Brunch, Aurora Breakfast Bar & Backyard.
MONDAY, SEP. 20
OSU Symphony Orchestra Presents “Made in America”, McKnight Center for the Performing Arts.
Cuban Rain/ ZuneAFish/ TrueErra, Blue Note.
Hosty, The Deli. Electric
FRIDAY, SEP. 24 The Blend, Remington Park. NA Death By Knowledge, The Deli. Indie Drive-By Truckers Anniversary Concert, Scissortail Park. Get Fired/ Senseless/ Kinda Creepy, Blue Note. Ginuwine, OKC Fairgrounds. Shinedown, The Zoo Amphitheatre.
TUESDAY, SEP. 21
Normandy’s/ Caught Stealing/ On Holiday, Blue Note.
Elvis Extravaganza, OKC Fairgrounds.
THURSDAY, SEP. 23
Colony House, Jones Assembly.
guests King ISO Maez 301 Jehry Robinson
SATURDAY, SEP. 25
WEDNESDAY, SEP. 22
Avatar, Diamond Ballroom.
Tech N9ne, Cain’s Ballroom. With special
We The Kingdom, OKC Fairgrounds.
Gary Lewis & the Playboys, OKC Fairgrounds.
SUNDAY, SEP. 26
Pecos & The Rooftops, Cain’s Ballroom. Sheryl Crow, River Spirit Casino Resort. Pop Skid Row, OKC Fairgrounds. Starshine Spotlights - Live Music during Weekend Brunch, Aurora Breakfast Bar & Backyard.
La Fiera de Ojinaga, OKC Fairgrounds. Starshine Spotlights - Live Music during Weekend Brunch, Aurora Breakfast Bar & Backyard.
WEDNESDAY, SEP. 29 Cleopatrick, VZD’s Restaurant & Bar. Dropkick Murphys & Rancid, The Zoo Amphitheatre.
Live music submissions must be received by Oklahoma Gazette no later than noon on Wednesday seven days before the desired publication date. Late submissions will not be included in the listings. Submissions run as space allows, although we strive to make the listings as inclusive as possible. Fax your listings to 528-4600 or e-mail to email@example.com. Sorry, but phone submissions cannot be accepted.
OKGA Z E T TE .COM | S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1
7105 N May Ave, OKC www.cureoklahoma.com
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For more information strain reviews scan QR code with your smart phone. Strain name: Tropical Fizz Strain name: Lilac Diesel Grown by: Budo Bud Acquired from: Budo Bud Date acquired: Sept. 3 Physical traits: bright green with wiry orange stigmas Bouquet: sweet and floral Review: Walking into a brand new dispensary is always a crapshoot, and it’s such a relief when the flower has every bit of the bag appeal you’d hoped. Additionally, the aroma of said flower also leaves nothing to be desired (Budo Bud has a little doodad that sucks the terpene fumes up and blows them directly into your face — a perfect workaround to that awful practice of stuffing your face directly into the container). While the Tallyman and Tropicana Cookies definitely appealed more to my nose, the overall winner is their Lilac Diesel with its “sativa” ef-
fects, which is to say potently energizing. The growers at Budo Bud have more than a dozen years of experience and it shows. From an excellent cure to perfect bud formation to a great high, their Lilac Diesel hits the spot both early and late in the day.
Grown by: GrOKC Acquired from: Woke Wellness Date acquired: Sept. 2 Physical traits: deep purple with hints of green and orange Bouquet: fruity and sweet Review: GrOKC’s Tropical Fizz finds itself in the rare category of so-purpleit’s-almost-black cannabis flower you’ll find in the OKC area. There are a number of reasons for that, but nothing looks, tastes or smells as exotic as these strains, so I grab a good amount whenever I find them. GrOKC was an early favorite, from the Jungle Boys genetics in their Gelato 33 run to the slap-in-the-face stoned you get from hitting their Bavarian Cream, but if you’re looking for something that won’t derail the rest of your day but enhance it, Tropical Fizz is definitely the route to take. The flavor is killer and the high is even-keel, so for best effect, roll this one up. Honorable mentions of their recent runs (of which there are many) are their Whoa-Si-Whoa and Chocolate Thainapple.
HIGH CULTURE OKGA Z E T TE .COM | S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1
PUZZLES NEW YORK TIMES MAGAZINE | UH? OH... By Dory Mintz | Puzzles Edited by Will Shortz | 0912 1
85 90 94
footnotes 15 His birthday is celebrated as ‘‘Children’s Day’’ in India 19 20 21 17 Worries anxiously 24 25 20 Mounted on 21 Angry reaction 27 28 29 23 Main port of Yemen 24 They’re banned in many 33 34 classrooms nowadays 29 Thing seen in the foreground 36 37 of ‘‘Washington Crossing the Delaware’’ 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 31 N.Y. neighbor 32 Calculators of old 52 53 54 34 Partner of starts 57 58 59 36 Speaking part? 38 ‘‘In that case .?.?. ’’ 62 63 64 65 66 39 Paul of ‘‘Little Miss Sunshine’’ 40 Didn’t hear the alarm, say 69 70 42 Where fruit bat soup is eaten as a delicacy 73 74 75 76 44 Orange follower 46 Widespread 79 80 81 82 83 47 Nonstop flight? 48 Maori for ‘‘image’’ 86 87 88 89 50 Redeems at a casino 91 92 93 51 Sooners, by another name 52 Have a home-cooked meal 97 98 99 100 101 53 Like some obligations 54 Dict. listing 106 107 108 109 110 58 Setting for Mets games: Abbr. 112 113 114 61 Gradually diminish 63 Residential suffix with 117 118 119 Angel 64 High-priced violin, 122 123 informally DOWN 126 127 66 All-knowing sort 1 Boardwalk treat 68 It’s represented by a 2 Plugged in, so to speak dot in the top-left 28 Swimmers in kelp forests 59 Gross 3 Actor Leary corner, in Braille 30 See 4-Across 60 Error, in totspeak 4 Missions, for short 69 Mideast palace parts 33 Visit a museum to see a 62 Buys in 5 ____ State, nickname 70 Son of Gloucester in Rembrandt exhibit? 65 Look down on for Massachusetts ‘‘King Lear’’ 35 One prone to looking down 67 Actor Justin sitting 6 Basis for an insurance 71 & 72 A pop 36 His tomb is in Red Square poolside? investigation 75 ____ Alonso, Mets 37 Diamondbacks, on 71 Adds insult to injury 7 ‘‘Build ____ Buttercup’’ slugger with the most scoreboards 73 Santa-tracking org. (1969 hit by the Foundations) home runs by a rookie in 38 Face cards? 74 River across the New 8 Spot for a perfume M.L.B. history (53) 41 Destination for oenophiles York/New Jersey border sample in a magazine, 76 ‘‘ .?.?. ish’’ 43 Sicily’s Parco dell’____ 77 Some rideshare info maybe 79 People people, for short 45 Bug-spray ingredient 78 Exploit 9 Green prefix 80 Exit 49 Bird of prey that’s gently 81 Award-winning film set 10 Staff 82 ‘‘What’s ____, Doc?’’ petted? in Tehran 11 Lead-in to com or net, (old Bugs Bunny short) 53 Popular pops 83 Bishop’s headgear but not org 85 Grapefruit descriptor 55 Kind of attack 84 Hang up the cleats, so to 12 Wrinkly-skinned fruit 87 Kelly of ‘‘Live’’ 56 Longtime hockey star speak 13 Largest object in the 88 Remark after losing Kovalchuk 86 Make fun of small orange Kuiper belt 89 Nutritional figs. 57 To read: Sp. fruits? 14 And the following, in 95 ‘‘____ be an honor!’’
ACROSS 1 Sliver 4 Politician with the campaign slogan 30-Across 9 Word with poetry or proportions 13 Something you might click to open 16 Elicits a ‘‘Whoa’’ from, say 18 Trimmed (down) 19 Wrestling star John 20 Tailor 22 Beams of one’s dreams? 25 Food served in an omakase meal 26 Having very little mental energy left 27 Moonfish
90 Something rectangular that might have more than four sides 91 Two-player card game 92 TV character who said ‘‘Time to hit the hay .?.?. oh, I forgot, I ate it!’’ 93 Old auto with its founder’s monogram 94 Storage spot 97 Opposite of ‘‘avant’’ 99 Reason to reschedule 102 Mashed potatoes, on a Thanksgiving plate? 107 Instrument heard in Spanish folk music 111 Vinyl collection 112 Food brand whose sales boomed after the premiere of ‘‘Stranger Things’’ 114 ‘‘When We Were Young’’ singer 115 Sharp 116 Fourth-quarter meltdown at an N.B.A. game in Oklahoma City? 120 Made out 121 Take home 122 Lather gatherer 123 Remained in bed, e.g. 124 Something to shoot for 125 ‘‘ .?.?. sting like ____’’ 126 Clubs 127 ____ Bleus, nickname for France’s soccer team
96 Snapple competitor 98 ‘‘Socialism: Utopian and Scientific’’ writer, 1880 100 Leaning right: Abbr. 101 Four-time U.S. Open champ 102 Four-time Australian Open champ 103 It has its highlights 104 Maker of the MDX, NSX and TLX 105 Bloc party? 106 Fix up again 107 Brown hue 108 Home of many Sherpas 109 ____ Hughes, name of main roles in ‘‘Westworld’’ and ‘‘Downton Abbey’’ 110 Decade after the aughts 113 Blossom 117 Taipei-to-Seoul dir. 118 Frequently 119 ____ Palmas
Stumped? Call 1-900-285-5656 to get the answers to any three clues by phone ($1.20 a minute).
SUDOKU EASY | N° 97233 Fill in the grid so that every row, column and 3-by-3 box contains the numbers 1 through 9. www.printmysudoku.com Grid n°97233 medium
5 3 7 2 8 5 6 8 36
4 4 3 2
9 9 7 5 3
S E P T E M B E R 1 5 , 2 0 2 1 | O KG A Z E T T E . C O M
3 8 9 7
NEW YORK TIMES CROSSWORD PUZZLE ANSWERS Puzzle No. 0822, which appeared in the September 1 issue.
C R U S T U S H R E C A P A R L E T E A O P I E N O R M P P I G E A D O R Y O L O F R S B A M A R I A L E N D S W E R A E R I M O V E N A N
T P Y A P R I C K N E G O O K A R A L A Y O N S E H O E E D E R E G E T S T P A V E E S I T N Y
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R I P P L V E I D E W I R S E T O M N E I T E A R T
M J A N A O D O S S O T T H E P I E A P T R T H E E S S E G O T H M A T A I T T E D I E R B E D I O F A S S P O T O G E T R S I N T I E S D O
P I C T U R E P E R F E C T M O M E N T S
E R S E C O D G O L D C H E L R E S H O W
A M I E N A N A S
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O D I S T
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A R B A B E T E S A T I U P D A L B L Y E S R P G N O E P L L P O S E B O R E N S
W E T S
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O N O S F A A M I R I T E
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FREE WILL ASTROLOGY - WEEK OF SEPTEMBER 16 Homework: Tell me why you HAD to do the thing that some people question or misunderstand. https://Newsletter@FreeWillAstrology ARIES (March 21-April 19)
“Books are mirrors: You only see in them what you already have inside you,” wrote author Carlos Zafòn Ruiz. Let’s take that a step further: “Other people are mirrors: You only see in them what you already have inside you.” And even further. “The whole world is a mirror: You only see in it what you already have inside you.” Have fun playing with these meditations, Aries. The coming weeks will be a fertile time to explore how thoroughly your experiences reflect the activity transpiring in your own brain.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20)
Some spiritual teachers say things like “I am not my body” or “This body is not me.” I don’t understand that. It’s an insult and disparagement. It’s dismissive of our bodies’ sublime beauty and our bodies’ inspired role in educating our souls. I agree that we are not ONLY our bodies. I agree that a part of us is eternal, not confined to flesh and blood. But hell yes, I am my body. You are your body. It’s a glorious aspect of who we are. It’s a miraculous creation that has taken millions of years to evolve into the masterpiece it is. So yes, you are your body, and yes, this body is you. I hope you love your body. Are in awe of it. Are pleased to be inside it. If anything is lacking in this department, now is an excellent time to make corrections.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20)
“I know someone who kisses the way a flower opens,” wrote poet Mary Oliver. I’d love for you Geminis to have that experience. The astrological omens suggest it’s more likely than usual to occur sometime soon. Other experiences with a better-than-average chance of unfolding in the coming days: allies who speak of intimate subjects in ways that resemble a flower opening; partners who co-create with you in ways that resemble a flower opening; spiritual helpers who offer guidance and help in ways that resemble a flower opening.
CANCER (June 21-July 22)
“I lie to myself all the time, but I never believe me,” writes Cancerian author S. E. Hinton. Ha! As a Cancerian myself, I confess to the same crime. But I am looking forward to a shift in the coming weeks. I suspect we Crabs will be inspired to cut way back on the fibs we try to get away with. You know what that means, right? We’ll be more inclined to trust ourselves, since we’ll be more likely to tell ourselves the truth. Our decisions will be shrewd, and our self-care will be rigorous. Hallelujah!
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22)
My object in this horoscope is to stimulate your imagination in ways nobody else in your life will. You need an influence like me, from outside your inner circle, to administer friendly, playful shocks to jolt you out of habitual ways of thinking. Here we go. 1. If you were to stow seven parts of your soul in seven objects, what objects would they be? 2. If you could change one thing about your past, what would it be? 3. If you were a character in a fairy tale or a movie, who would you be? 4. If you could travel to a place that would teach you what you most need to know, where would it be? 5. If you had a magical animal as your special ally, what animal would it be? 6. If you could sing a song with uncanny healing power for someone you care about, what song would it be? 7. If you could improve your relationship with some part of your body, what would it be?
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
“There’s nothing wrong with reading a book you love over and over,” writes Virgo author Gail Carson Levine. Adding to that encouragement, I offer you the following authorizations: There’s nothing wrong with seeking a pleasure you love over and over; or doing a necessary task you love over and over; or performing an energizing ritual you love over and over; or expressing key truths you love over and over. And these permissions will be especially crucial for you to exult in during the coming weeks, dear Virgo: because it’s a time when mindful repetition will be one of your strengths and a key to stimulating the deepening
experiences you need.
of Fun and Games for your entire circle.
“If I’m a bitch and a fake. Is there nobody who will love a bitch and a fake?” Libra author Graham Greene wrote that in his novel *The End of the Affair*. Here’s my extrapolation: I believe that every one of us, including me, is a bitch and a fake now and then. We all go through periods when we are not at our best, when we fail to live up to our own high standards. Is it possible that you have recently flirted with such a phase? If so, the cosmos has authorized me to absolve you. You are free you to reclaim your full exquisite beauty. And if you haven’t been a bitch and a fake, congratulations. It means you have weathered a gnarly storm.
I’m not engaging in empty flattery when I say that you are unlike anyone else who has ever lived in the history of the world. Your absolute uniqueness is a fundamental fact. Maybe you don’t reflect on this truth very often. Perhaps you feel that it’s not helpful to think about or that it’s irrelevant to your daily decision-making. But I propose that in the next three weeks, you give it a central place in your understanding of your destiny. Allow it to influence everything you do. Make it a major factor in your decision-making.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
Poet Yves Olade writes, “I’ve started thinking of people as wounds that don’t heal.” To me, that idea is idiotically cynical. Moreover, I think it’s wrong for most of us. The truth is, humans have a natural instinct for healing. They are predisposed to attract experiences that might aid their recovery from difficulties—that might teach them the healing lessons they need. I believe this will be especially true for you in the coming weeks. (PS: Dr. Andrew Weil writes, “Any level of biological organization that we examine, from DNA up to the most complex body systems, shows the capacity for self-diagnosis, for removal of damaged structure, and for regeneration of new structure.”)
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)
Research suggests that most people think everyone else has more fun than they do. But I’m guessing that only a small percentage of Sagittarians feel that way. You tend to be extra alert for fun, and you have intuitive skill at tracking down fun. In addition, you often take the initiative to precipitate fun. You understand you have a responsibility to generate fun, and you have a talent for generating it. All these capacities will serve you well in the coming weeks. I recommend you raise your mastery of the art and science of having fun to a new level. Be the Champion
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
Welcome back from the underworld, Aquarius. I hope your time wandering through the maze-like twilight brought you as many fascinating mysteries as confusing questions. I trust you took advantage of the smoky riddles and arresting dilemmas to fortify your soul’s wisdom. I suspect that although your travels may have at times seemed hard to fathom, they have provided you with a superb education that will serve you well in the immediate future.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20)
In Oscar Wilde’s novel *The Picture of Dorian Gray*, the lead character says to a friend, “You filled me with a wild desire to know everything about life.” Is there a person who might inspire you like that, Pisces? Maybe a person from your past with whom you’ve fallen out of touch? Or is there a person hovering on the outskirts of your life who could stimulate you to have such feelings? Now is a favorable time to seek these influences. I advise you to be bold in your quest to associate with allies who will stimulate your lust for life and teach you crucial lessons. (PS: For extra credit, make abundant use of another theme from Wilde’s book: “The search for beauty is the real secret of life.”) Go to RealAstrology.com to check out Rob Brezsny’s expanded weekly audio horoscopes /daily text message horoscopes. The audio horoscopes are also available by phone at 1-877-873-4888 or 1-900-950-7700.
FREE WILL ASTROLOGY - WEEK OF SEPTEMBER 23 Homework: ThisiswhatIdotoearnaliving.Letme knowwhatyoudo.Newsletter@FreeWillAstrology.com ARIES (March 21-April 19)
Aries author Steve Maraboli says, “The best way to love someone is not to change them, but instead, help them reveal the greatest version of themselves.” If that strategy appeals to you, the next eight weeks will be an excellent time to put it to maximum use. You’re entering a phase when you can have an especially beneficial effect on people you care for. You’ll be at peak power to help them unleash dormant potentials and access untapped resources.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20)
It’s a good time to ruminate about things you wish could be part of your life but aren’t. You will be wise to develop a more conscious relationship with wistful fantasies about impossible dreams. Here’s one reason why this is true: You might realize that some seemingly impossible dreams aren’t so impossible. To get in the mood for this fun exercise, meditate on a sample reverie: “I wish I could spend a whole day discovering new music to love. I wish I owned a horse and a boat and a vintage brown and orange striped bohemian cardigan sweater from the 1970s. I wish I knew the names of all the flowers. I wish I felt more at ease about revealing my hidden beauty. I wish I could figure out how to eliminate unnecessary stress from my life.”
GEMINI (May 21-June 20)
Poet, essayist, and translator Anne Carson calls her husband Robert Currie the “Randomizer.” His role in her life as a creative artist is to make quirky recommendations that help her avoid being too predictable. He sends her off in directions she wouldn’t have imagined by herself. Here’s an example: At one point in her career, Carson confessed she was bored with her writing. The Randomizer suggested, “Let’s put dancers into it.” In response, she repurposed the sonnets she had been working on into a live theatrical performance featuring many dancers. I think you would benefit from having a Randomizer in your life during the coming weeks. Know anyone who could serve? If not, look for one. Or be your own Randomizer.
CANCER (June 21-July 22)
If you so desired, you could travel to Munich, Germany and eat beer-flavored ice cream. Or you could go to Rehoboth, Delaware and get bacon-flavored ice cream. If you were in Taiwan, you could enjoy pineapple shrimp ice cream, and if you were in London, you could sample haggis-flavored ice cream, made from sheep innards. But my advice right now is to stick with old reliables like chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry ice cream—which are still delicious even if they’re not exotic. What’s my reasoning? In general, the astrological aspects suggest that during the coming weeks, you’re most likely to thrive on trustworthy standbys and experiences you know and trust.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22)
Celebrated novelist Jane Austen (1775–1817) wrote, “Sometimes I have kept my feelings to myself, because I could find no language to describe them in.” People who aren’t as articulate as Austen experience that problem even more often than she did. But the good news, Leo, is that in the coming weeks, you’ll be extra skillful at expressing your feelings and thoughts—even those that in the past have been difficult to put into words. I invite you to take maximum advantage of this grace period. Communicate with hearty poise and gleeful abandon.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
“When you know what’s important, it’s a lot easier to ignore what’s not,” writes author and life coach Marie Forleo. Let’s make her thought the basis of your work and play in the coming weeks. Get vibrantly clear on what is of supreme value to you, which influences bring out the best in you, and which people make it easy for you to be yourself. Then compose a second list of trivial situations that are of minor interest, influences that make you feel numb, and people who don’t fully appreciate you. Next, Virgo, formulate long-term plans to phase out the things in the second list as you increasingly emphasize your involvement in the pleasures named in the first list.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
Happy Birthday sometime soon, Libra! As gifts, I have
collected six useful mini-oracles for you to meditate on during the rest of 2021. They’re all authored by Libran aphorist Yahia Lababidi. 1. Hope is more patient than despair and so outlasts it. 2. Miracles are proud creatures; they will not reveal themselves to those who do not believe. 3. A good listener is one who helps us overhear ourselves. 4. One definition of success might be refining our appetites, while deepening our hunger. 5. With enigmatic clarity, life gives us a different answer each time we ask her the same question. 6. Temptation: seeds we are forbidden to water, that are showered with rain.
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
Pioneering psychologist Carl Jung wrote, “I must also have a dark side if I am to be whole.” But it’s important to add that some dark sides tend to be destructive and demoralizing, while other dark sides are fertile and interesting. Most of us have a share of each. My reading of the planetary omens suggests that you Scorpios now have extra power to upgrade your relationship with the fertile and interesting aspects of your dark side. I hope you will take advantage! You have a ripe opportunity to deepen and expand your wholeness.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)
Sagittarian poet Rainer Maria Rilke was a complicated person with many mysterious emotions and convoluted thoughts. And yet, he once wrote that life occasionally brought him “boundless simplicity and joy.” I find it amazing he could ever welcome such a state. Kudos to him! How about you, dear Sagittarius? Are you capable of recognizing when boundless simplicity and joy are hovering in your vicinity, ready for you to seize them? If so, be extra alert in the next two weeks. I expect there’ll be a visitation or two. Maybe even three or four.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
Baltasar Gracián was not a 21st-century New Age self-help teacher. He was a 17th-century Jesuit philosopher born under the sign of serious, diligent Capricorn. I hope you will be extra receptive to his advice in the coming weeks. He wrote, “Know your key
qualities, your outstanding gifts. Cultivate them. Redouble their use.” Among the key qualities he gave as examples were disciplined discernment and resilient courage. I bring his thoughts to your attention because the coming weeks will be a rousing time to heed his counsel. It’s time for you to identify and celebrate and give abundant expression to your key qualities.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
After studying the genes that create feathers in birds, scientists found that humans have all the necessary genes to grow feathers. (I read about it in *National Geographic* magazine.) So why don’t we grow feathers, then? Well, it’s complicated. Basically, the feathermaking genes are not fully activated. Who knows? Maybe someday, there’ll be technology that enables us to switch on those genes and sprout plumage. I bet my Aquarian friend Jessie, whose body has 30 tattoos and 17 piercings, would take advantage. In the coming weeks, it might be fun for you to imagine having bird-like qualities. You’re entering a high-flying phase—a time for ascension, expansion, soaring, and seeing the big picture from lofty vantage points.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20)
Are there sensual and erotic acts you’ve never tried and are curious about? Are there experimental approaches on the frontier of your desires that would be intriguing to consider? Might there be lusty experiences you’ve barely imagined or don’t know about—but that could be fun to play with? According to my analysis of the astrological omens, the coming weeks will be a favorable time to explore such possibilities. Be safe and prudent, of course. Don’t be irresponsible or careless. But also be willing to expand your notions of your sexuality.
Go to RealAstrology.com to check out Rob Brezsny’s expanded weekly audio horoscopes /daily text message horoscopes. The audio horoscopes are also available by phone at 1-877-873-4888 or 1-900-950-7700.
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