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NORTH OKC - 9800 Broadway Extension, Suite 200 | SOUTH OKC - 3110 S.W. 89th, Suite 104


in this issue

JULY 2017




“No man is an island entire of itself” – and to some degree, the quality of our lives is influenced by where we live, and near whom. A good neighborhood can provide anything from a beautiful backdrop to a real sense of community camaraderie, and Oklahoma City is home to some of the best.



Summer is here, and while air conditioning is one of mankind’s greatest inventions, you don’t want to spend the entire season cooped up indoors, do you? Read up on patio furniture, pest control and expert chefs’ recommendations for getting the most out of your grill, and then get ready to put your backyard front and center.







in this issue

JULY 2017

In the 405

your backyard grill; the menu at Flint has plenty of fuel to stoke visitors’ appetites; music, mood and a tempting suite of seasonal cocktails make the Red Piano Lounge a summertime treat.

15 Discussing this and that with restaurateur, politician and all-around dynamo Cathy Cummings; home goods and more inside seriously sophisticated downtown boutique Urbane; singing the praises of eye-catching scarlet shades of lipstick; why Oklahoma can’t claim credit for the invention of the electric guitar; celebrating with a bang on Independence Day; expert advice for maintaining your health in each decade of life; the true story of Oklahoma performer Tommy Allsup, who lived on the day the music died; the ins and outs (and importance) of properly staging a home for sale.  


78 When is planning for darkness a bright idea? This summer, since St. Louis – already an inviting travel destination – is located within the path of totality for the upcoming total solar eclipse.



59 Decades of professional expertise have helped Chateau Designs owner Rose Clark make her own home a beautiful showcase; the classic combination of white and blue has moved beyond porcelain to occupy its own niche in decor.


65 Charming Nichols Hills Plaza café En Croute is among the city’s upper crust of cuisine and ambience; Maples Barbeque pitmaster Brian Cole shares tips for doing some serious smoking on



And Eat It, Too


Nichols Hills Plaza café En Croute serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as killer cheese and charcuterie trays. But with options such as the Triple Chocolate Raspberry Entremet (with a berry balsamic compote and gold leaf as a crowning touch), visitors should save room for dessert whenever they come in.

81 Science Museum Oklahoma hosts a large exhibition of stop-motion animation maestro Ray Harryhausen’s smallscale work; feel like the only fan in the building as Sir Paul McCartney brings his One on One tour to OKC; documentarian Derek Watson travels the state and the world to shine a light on stories; Lyric Theatre brings a summer set of musicals to theater lovers; Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center programs an exhibition of computerdriven clothing.

In Every Issue 10 From the Editor 12 Web Sights 24 On the Scene 70 Food and Drink 84 On Location 86 On the Radar 88 Backstory

Approaching its 90th anniversary, Nichols Hills remains one of OKC’s most sought-after neighborhoods. Photo by Quit Nguyen



st for Zipping out we ; make a camping trip s! ore s’m some

JULY 2017


Editor-in-Chief Heidi Rambo Centrella

Inspired by last month’s fitness feature to get back on the workout wagon

ADVERTISING Associate Publisher Tom H. Fraley III EDITORIAL Managing Editor Steve Gill Style Editor Sara Gae Waters Fashion Editor Jennifer Salyer Editorial Coordinator Louise Scrivens

Executive Director of Advertising Cynthia Whitaker-hill Account Executives Melissa Bake Carrie Bailey Account Manager Ronnie Morey

Contributing Writers M.J. Alexander, Mark Beutler, Christine Eddington, Lauren Hammack, Greg Horton, Lance McDaniel, Elaine Warner ART Art Director Scotty O’Daniel e SMO’s Eager to se rryhausen new Ray Ha 81) exhibit (p.

Graphic Designer Brian O’Daniel

Design & Production Coordinator Tiffany McKnight Contributing Photographers M.J. Alexander, Justin Avera, David Cobb, Shannon Cornman, Terrell Fry, Charlie Neuenschwander, Quit Nguyen, Don Risi

405 Magazine Volume 3, Number 7, July 2017. 405 Magazine is published monthly by 405 Magazine, Inc. at 1613 N. Broadway, Oklahoma City, OK 73103, 405.842.2266. © Copyright 2017 405 Magazine, Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction of 405 Magazine content, in whole or part by any means, without the express written consent of the company is strictly prohibited. 405 Magazine is not responsible for the care of and/or return of unsolicited materials. 405 Magazine reserves the right to refuse advertising deemed detrimental to the community’s best interest or in questionable taste. Opinions expressed in this magazine are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of ownership or management. Basic annual subscription rate is $14.95. U.S. single-copy price is $4.95. Back issues are $9.50 each

POSTMASTER: Send address changes to 405 Magazine, P.O. Box 16765, North Hollywood, CA 91615-6765. Kehinde Wiley (American, b. 1977). Shantavia Beale II, 2012. Oil on canvas, 60 x 48 in. (152.4 x 121.9 cm). Collection of Ana and Lenny Gravier. © Kehinde Wiley. (Photo: Jason Wyche)



READER SERVICES 405 Magazine 1613 N. Broadway Oklahoma City, OK 73103 Phone 405.842.2266 Fax 405.604.9435, Story Ideas and Letters to the Editor Your views and opinions are welcome. Include your full name, address and daytime phone number and email to Letters sent to 405 Magazine become the magazine’s property, and it owns all rights to their use. 405 Magazine reserves the right to edit letters for length and clarity. Back Issues Back issues are $9.50 (includes P&H) each. For back issue availability and order information, please contact our office. Bulk Orders For multiple copy order information, please contact our office. Subscriptions 405 Magazine is available by subscription for $14.95 (12 issues), $24.95 (24 issues) or $34.95 (36 issues). Subscription Customer Service 405 Magazine P.O. Box 16765 North Hollywood, CA 91615-6765 Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. - 7 p.m. CST Phone 818.286.3160 Fax 800.869.0040 ADMINISTRATION Distribution Raymond Brewer Website and social media



Taking It Outside





A S SOON A S this issue wraps, my son and I will be heading west. We decided to stay stateside for a vacation this summer, with a week spent whitewater rafting, camping, hiking, sight-seeing and, ahem, ziplining in south central Colorado. Whitewater rafting? So much fun. Hiking? Love it. Sight-seeing? Yes, please. Now, the camping part during a two-day, overnight rafting trip has me a little concerned, as I’ve never slept in a tent, but since the guides will be setting everything up for us and cooking our savory meals, I’ve decided it can’t be that bad. The ziplining? Not quite sold. Despite the afternoon already being booked for the tour, I’m not really high on the name of the area in which we will be zipping: The Lost Canyon. Perhaps there’s a better word choice than “lost?” Nonetheless, the plan is to face my highly unhealthy fear of falling – not so much a fear of heights, but definitely falling. Yes, there is a difference. There’s something about being outdoors, disconnecting from everyday life and talking to real people in real time that’s invigorating … and, to me, necessary. It doesn’t even have to be a planned excursion. It can happen right here at home, even at your own home. Gather some friends, turn off the digital noise (no phones, no tablets) and revel in sharing time together in the backyard. A few of our metro’s best chefs did just that in preparation for our Entertaining Outdoors feature (pg. 48). Here you’ll find great tips on grilling meats and vegetables – even grilling fruits – while keeping cool in the heat. Coincidentally, you may be looking for a new or new-to-you home that has the perfect outdoor space, potentially one surrounded by ideal neighbors for enjoying some backyard revelry. We’ve put together a guide for finding the best neighborhood to suit you, your lifestyle, your must-haves (pg. 38). Some are in older, more established neighborhoods, some are in newer communities and some are hidden gems that might not be so hidden in the near future. Hint, hint. No matter where you land – whether it’s a new neighborhood, your own backyard or a tent in some not-lost-at-all canyon – we hope you won’t forget the DEET and sunscreen. Happy Trails!

405.607.4323 | Casady Square | North Pennsylvania & Britton Road | Monday-Friday 10am-5:30pm | Saturday 10am-5pm Financing available WAC



Ianthi’s class is one of hundreds to receive free arts programming through Allied Arts funding. Incorporating arts into education allows kids to find joy in learning, inspiring them to think differently, try harder and dream bigger. When you give to Allied Arts, you’re giving to more than 40 local agencies that, together, reach about a million people each year. We help fund initiatives that use art to help people in need and strengthen Oklahoma communities.

Web Sights What’s online at

Extra Helpings

Continuing to eat when you’re full can lead to a stomachache – on the other hand, there’s always room to learn more about food. This month, we’re augmenting a couple of articles with online-only content: Maples Barbeque pitmaster Brian Cole (who talks grilling mastery on p. 68) shares his personal recipe for knockout beer-can chicken, and Crosby Dyke of En Croute (p. 66) discusses some of the finer points of cheesemongery, including a recommendation or two. Visit to find both articles, and bon appetit.

Dinners for Winners

En Croute and Maples are a taste of the local hotspots we are glad to feature in this issue, but not the whole enchilada – you’ll find several excellent reasons to get out and dine around the metro. And with that in mind, wouldn’t you like us to pick up part of the tab? The giveaway we call the Friday $50 rolls on in July, as we give away $50 worth of gift cards each week, featuring an eatery found in this month’s issue or one of our office’s other local favorites. For your chance to win, sign up for our e-newsletters if you aren’t already (it’s free, just visit and keep an eye out for the link to click. We’ll draw a winner at random each Friday afternoon, which means having something delicious to celebrate could easily be in your future.

Keeping in Contact 12


You might have heard this already, but we consider it fairly big news, so forgive us for mentioning it once more with feeling: We’ve moved! In the physical universe, our new office is at 1613 N Broadway, OKC, OK, 73103. However, do bear in mind that our electronic lines of communication remain intact and unchanged – you can still let us know anything that’s on your mind via email at



Let us help you step out of the ordinary!


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in the


Enthusiasm Engine Chef of a popular Italian restaurant, mother to a blended family of five children, political aspirant who’s a recent addition to the Village City Council – Cathy Cummings is a multitalented dynamo who remains cheerful while accomplishing it all. And she’s a big believer in garlic.




PESTO AND POLITICS Cathy Cummings’ spice-filled life

What is the Cathy Cummings backstory – where are you from originally? “I’m originally from Kansas City, Missouri, but I’ve lived in Oklahoma about 18 years. I am married to the newly crowned King of Bacon, Sean Cummings, a.k.a. the Irish Pub guy. We have five grown children, and all are now in college. Raising five kids in a blended family was quite an undertaking – but everyone is still alive.” How long has Vito’s been around? “We opened in the summer of 2003. My family had been in the restaurant business all my life, so it was a natural fit for me. Using my family’s recipes has made it even more special. It truly feels like a big Italian Sunday night dinner with my family, every single night.”



The name Vito’s sounds like it could have been inspired by The Godfather. How did you come up with that? “The story behind the name is actually quite funny: To purchase a new outdoor sign was going to cost me about $7,000. Or, I could use the letters from the previous tenant’s sign for next to nothing. In the mix of letters available, I came up with Vito’s – and I actually do have an Uncle Vito, so it all worked out. (And to be perfectly honest, I was just cheap!) But, as my dad would say, ‘It was just good business sense.’” And the recipes are from your mom? “Yes! I had an old recipe box from my mother. They were stained and well-used; they had been passed down from her mother. So my challenge


R ED CHECK ER ED TA BL ECL OT HS , old family photos, the ever-present scent of simmering garlic … the quaint little Italian bistro known as Vito’s does a good job of making its space in a strip of businesses on North May Avenue feel like a trattoria on the Amalfi coast. And in addition to the excellent cooking of family recipes, one of the not-so-secret ingredients of its success is its proprietor, Cathy Cummings. “Hi, how are you?” she exclaims, greeting every visitor with friendly, gregarious charm. “Welcome to Vito’s! I’m so glad you’re here!” And there’s more to Cummings than her skills as a chef and restaurateur. At one time, she was a single mother to three daughters under the age of 7, working multiple jobs to make ends meet. She has been a candidate for Oklahoma’s Lt. Governor, and this spring ran a successful campaign to become the newest member of the Village City Council. She sat down with us – for a moment – to chat about life, politics and garlic.

was to take those recipes and turn them into commercial recipes. Just like in Italy – wherever Italians landed in America, they adjusted their food to whatever was available and what was fresh. What we found is that some items worked from our home kitchen and some didn’t. But the fun is when you go from a pinch of this and a handful of that, which is what many of the recipes said, to cups of this and pounds of that.” Politics seems like a big departure from chicken carbonara; how did you become interested in government? “My parents’ restaurant was right across the street from City Hall, and my friend’s dad was mayor. He was fantastic, bigger than life. The people that came through my family’s restaurant every single day were the movers, shakers and decision makers of Kansas City. They were all good people doing good things, and I got to see them do good things up close and personal. So I never had that negative view of politics. Then I started to see the negativity in Oklahoma, and I didn’t like the way it was going. I wanted someone to step up and help fix it, but nobody did. So I thought, why not me? Everyone waits for someone to save them. I looked at our Legislature and thought, ‘They’re no smarter than I am. They are no more well-known than I am. Most of them don’t have business sense like I have. My kids were grown. Why not me?’” A couple of years ago, you walked thousands of miles across the state in your bid for lieutenant governor. What was that like? “I visited every single one of our 77 counties. I talked and met with business owners, and anyone I could meet and shake hands with, I did. I kissed a lot of babies, went through many pairs of shoes and lost a lot of weight, but it made me fall in love with Oklahoma even more.” And now you’re on the Village City Council? “Yes, I was overwhelmingly elected to the Village City Council with 80 percent of the vote against a longstanding incumbent. I didn’t do it alone, that’s for sure. I had lots of help and many volunteers.”

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Oklahoma has become increasingly conservative in its politics in recent years; do you see the pendulum ever swinging back the other way? “No doubt about it. I honestly have nothing against Republicans. They were an excellent opposition party for a long time, and what they have found is that it is very difficult to be the party that is completely in charge. If everyone were to be completely honest, we would get better government from a healthy mix of Democrats and Republicans. [Moving from] the one extreme to the other has not proven to work.” Finally, what is your own personal opinion – can there ever be too much garlic? “There are two things my mother told me that I always live by: Never leave the house without wearing lipstick, and there is no such thing as too much garlic.” - MARK BEUTLER

of Oklahoma




Sophistication Station

Urbane dazzles at downtown shopping U R BA N E IS MOR E than a catchy name, and much more than a furniture store – it’s all-encompassing. Owners Scott Wagoner and Ben Davis have made it that way. “‘Urbane’ means sophisticated, cultivated and refined, which is what we try to keep in mind when looking for new product lines,” Davis says. “We look for clean, contemporary designs in everything we offer.” Having backgrounds in residential remodeling and neighborhood planning, respectively, Scott and Ben were no strangers to well-thought-out design. Originally on Western Avenue, they have happily relocated to downtown at 1015 N Broadway, #100. Calling the move “a great decision,” Davis says, “Automobile Alley has a great mix of shops and restaurants, and also has some really supportive people such as Steve Mason, Jane Jenkins and Meg Salyer making sure that the district is successful. Currently, we are expanding the shop … to offer a larger selection of furniture.” More can definitely be better, especially when it’s more of what Urbane has to offer. - SAR A GAE WATERS

Ben Davis and Scott Wagoner

Stoneware containers with acacia lids, starting at $14 “This simple, straight-lined design looks great in a modern kitchen.”

Club watch, $249 “We love the classic, retro design and striped band, designed in the UK.”

Marble serving board and brass bowl, each $60 “The almondtoned marble and satin brass pair nicely for sophisticated serving.”

No. 159 Lemongrass hand cream, $26 “A Swedish moisturizing cream with all-natural ingredients and the fragrance of lemongrass and rosemary essential oils.”

Cocktail smoking box, $299 “Infuse cocktails with savory flavor! Part of our line of professional bar tools designed by world champion bartender Charles Joly.”

Minerva glass hurricane with marble tray, $388 “A great accessory for any home or office, it is stunning as a vessel for flowers or branches, or with candles burning in it.”

Embassy sofa by Gus* Modern, $3,195 “This classic, mid-century sofa with tailored proportions and refined details is available in several leathers.”




Duffel bag, $88 “A classic canvas and vegan leather bag that is just the right size for a weekend trip.”

Graphite objects, starting at $22 “A piece of art, a paperweight and a pencil! Each object is hand-made out of compressed graphite, and the designs are outstanding. They are one of our most popular gift items.”

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in the 405 TRENDS

Red Hot!

Give your lips a luscious shade

classic, but we may have to thank the iconic wearers of red lipstick to making it a must. From Marilyn Monroe to Elizabeth Taylor, these beauty icons sported the shade with confidence, and when Madonna boldly went where no woman had gone before in style, the red lip was just as much a part of the look as the big bow in her hair. While it might seem a bit intimidating to wear – or perhaps “flaunt” is the better term – it’s definitely in fashion these days to do so: Summer reds are more popular than ever. In picking from this color family, whether it be “Temptation” or “Ex-Factor” or even “Hot Tomato,” you’re likely to find the perfect hue to pucker up to. - SAR A GAE WATERS

Balliets, 5801 NW Grand, OKC; The MakeUp Bar, 7646 N Western, OKC; Sooo Lilly, 12100 N May, OKC



(l to r) 1st row: Bobbi Brown “flame” and Trish McEvoy “wild rose” from Balliets; Sooo Lilly “micro red” from Sooo Lilly 2nd row: Sooo Lilly “ex-factor” from Sooo Lilly; Kevyn Aucoin “Carliana,” Serenity + Scott “hot tomato” and Lipstick Queen Silver Screen “Have Paris” from The MakeUp Bar 3rd row: La Prairie “Rouge Claire” from Balliets; Lipstick Queen “Medieval” from The MakeUp Bar; Bobbi Brown “retro red” from Balliets 4th row: Laura Mercier “Temptation” and Laura Mercier “haute red” from Balliets Back row: Sooo Lilly “rhubarb” from Sooo Lilly


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in the 405 OKLAHOMYTHS

THE CLAIM: Robert Lee Dunn, born Feb. 8, 1908, in Braggs, Okla., invented the electric steel guitar. THE SOURCE: The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture, published by the Oklahoma Historical Society. STATUS: False.

Guitar Heroes The men behind the instrument

BOB DU N N , who toured between the World Wars with the

Panhandle Cowboys and Indians, was an early adapter and virtuoso of the electric steel guitar. His Jan. 27, 1935, studio recording of the tune “Taking Off” with Milton Brown and his Musical Brownies is considered the first recording to use an electrically amplified instrument. Vintage Guitar magazine credits him as “the amplified guitar’s first stylist,” noting that, “In a way, Dunn was a sort of Jeff Beck of the steel guitar; his solos were often otherworldly, with cascades of arpeggios, jarring staccato notes and Hawaiian chime effects blasting through the mix of instruments.”



THE TRUTH: Dunn did not, however, invent the instrument. Credit goes to Texas-born George Delmetia Beauchamp — a vaudeville performer who experimented with ways to have his guitar heard above an orchestra — for creating the first string-driven, electromagnetic guitar. Brad Tolinski and Alan di Perna, authors of the 2016 Random House book Play It Loud: An Epic History of the Style, Sound and Revolution of the Electric Guitar, note that the Beauchamp design became the basis of the first commercially produced electric guitar, the RO-PAT-IN A-25 “Frying Pan,” which hit the market in 1932. RO-PAT-IN (inspired by the term ElectRO-PAtent-INstruments) would evolve into Rickenbacker International, which continues manufacturing instruments today. In an unexpected twist, the first documented public performance of an electric guitar does have an Oklahoma connection. According to Guitar Aficionado magazine, the first-ever concert to feature the instrument occurred in Kansas on Oct. 31, 1932, at Wichita’s Shadowland Pavilion. The performer, guitarist Gage Kelso Brewer, was born in 1904 in Gage, Oklahoma Territory. Brewer’s pioneering performance featured two RO-PAT-IN prototypes – the electric Spanish prototype and the A-25 Frying Pan – that he had obtained from his friend George Beauchamp. An Oct. 2, 1932, article in the Wichita Beacon marveled at the technological wonder, which was promoted in a series of Halloween-themed concerts as a combination of “natural personal technique and electrical perfection.” Although the A-25 was destroyed in a 1935 fire, Brewer’s electric Spanish model is now at the Wichita-Sedgwick County Historical Museum, the centerpiece of its exhibition titled “The Electric Guitar – Wichita’s Instrument!” Rock on. - M.J. ALEX ANDER Editor’s note: Oklahoma is rich with history, lore and fun facts, but some of them aren’t quite factual. In this series, M.J. Alexander hunts for the accuracy – or lack thereof – behind some of our state’s stories.

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Explore what trees mean to us – and the animals who live in them – at our new summer-long

Treehouses Exhibit!

Enjoy garden tours, cultural adventure and upcoming events like the Holba’ Pisachi’

Film Festival and our annual Labor Day Celebration.

C h i c k a s a w C u l t u r a l C e n t e r. c o m • S u l p h u r, O k l a h o m a • 5 8 0 - 6 2 2 -7 1 3 0 UNI_17-CNC-31 405 Magazine_July.indd 1

6/7/17 11:40 AM



in the 405 ON THE SCENE




deadCenter Film Row Frolic


1. Selena Skorman, Laurence Reese, Jonathan Curtin, Keeva Lough 2. Matt Miller, Kelly Thewlis, Kate Gondwe 3. Ginger Gilmartin, Mollie Milligan 4. Chris Freihofer, Jabee 5. Amber Shelton, Misha Goli, Sohrab Bassiri, Meredith Thomas


The massive deadCenter Film Festival includes some excellent parties in addition to its cinematic offerings – such as this gleeful bash hosted by Dunlap Codding and 405 Magazine.



SCOTT WAGONER & BEN DAVIS, OWNERS OF URBANE 1015 N Broadway Ave #100, OKC | (405) 602-2555 |








Red Rooftop 2017 AIDS Walk OKC hosts its 5th annual summer fundraiser atop Cardinal Engineering in downtown, gathering guests for an entertaining evening that will result in grants for nonprofits providing HIV/AIDS care.



1. Courtney Hall, Lance McDaniel, Patsy Gillispie 2. Ric Miller, Courtney and Ed Blau 3. James Siderias, Lisa Pitsiri 4. Robert Mills, Phil Burke, Chris George, Monty Milburn 5. Matt Harney, Matthew Miller, Suresh Mansinghani






in the 405 LAUGH LINES

Blast from the Past

Let freedom – and your ears – ring sense, I still have some of last year’s fireworks in the garage. Standing two feet tall among the punks and sparklers is a box labeled “Lock and Load,” a noisy firestorm of 24 hardcore shells, each with a short fuse. On the side, a supplementary label announces, “Barely Legal!” Admittedly, that probably added to its appeal. On the back, a red warning – “Do not place head over tube” – doubles as an unapologetic contradiction to natural selection, as if warehousing fireworks in the garage weren’t enough of a recipe for disaster. As some of history’s most efficient devices for finger removal, fireworks are rather aggressive on their own, and the names have become much more threatening than when I was little. I don’t know who comes up with them, but I’ll bet they’ve been in training for the position for years – one after-school fight (or arson) at a time. I think I’d enjoy naming fireworks. I’d go back to cheery names that do little to warn the consumer that gunpowder and fire will take off your face. Instead of Attitude Adjustment, my flaming brocade would be called Dancing Waterfall or Late-Night Lasik. Instead of Big, Fat Hissee Fit, I’d name the big finale The Star-Spangled Burner. Maybe I’d just name the pyrotechnics after the result they produce, like Screaming Shingle Burner, Toddler’s Terror or Party Crasher. Not all fireworks live up to the hype of their names, unfortunately: The Redneck Ruckus hardly rose to the occasion during last year’s festivities. Wrapped in a box covered with descriptors such as “raw,” “explosive,” “powerful” and “action-packed,” the Redneck Ruckus packaging practically cried out for a Lee Greenwood accompaniment, but turned



out to be little more than a $28 fizzle. A Redneck Rip-off. The barely legal Lock and Load, on the other hand, surpassed all expectations for a spectacular flaming display. Instead of the glittery wave of family-friendly pink and lemon stars advertised on the back, it went rogue, spewing a comet of gunpowder as it hastily pointed itself right at the neighbors’ drunken hot tub, screaming the entire length of its voyage toward the oblivious revelers next door. Once its Scud-missile-like explosion had sounded, 10 car alarms went off like a chorus – unless that was merely the ringing in our ears. We fully expected to be arrested before the echoes had faded, but we weren’t. Instead, we had a lit punk, obnoxious neighbors who were now even louder and 23 more

power-packed, heavy duty, mega shells remaining. What to do, what to do … Over the past year, those neighbors, in their own annoying way, have prompted what has now become a ceremonial lighting of the punk, which has taken the original inventory of 24 shells to about half a dozen. Nothing says “your music sucks” louder or more efficiently than a sonic boom over your back patio at 1 a.m. This Fourth, we’ll forget about the neighbors and come together as Americans, united by our shared appreciation of fireworks with names such as Fire Starters, Bad Decisions and Parole Violations. Names that mean one thing on Independence Day: Let freedom ring. During the other 364 days of the year, they mean, “Hey, man, turn down your stereo.” - LAUREN HAMMACK


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in the 405 WELLNESS

Aging by the Numbers Staying on top of your health


W HET HER YOU A R E 20 , 30, 40, 60

or 88, aging well is something we all hope to do – and although the concept varies slightly among individuals, there are some common goals most of us share. For example, when our mortality gets the better of us, we presumably don’t want to die of cancers (especially the kind we caused with our poor life choices), dementia, a fall from which we can’t get up or by being hit by a taxi. Paging Debbie Downer, right? What we’d rather do is live fully right up until we die. At home, fit and healthy, a painlessly-in-your-sleep kind of scenario. So we diligently do the things we know we should, as often as we can. We exercise, we eat well, we get enough sleep, drink plenty of water and that’s that. Right? We’ve done what we can do, now it’s left for fickle fate to decide. Except it’s not. There are many other things we can do to stay healthy well into our dotage. In the case of taxi-strike avoidance, we can look both ways, avoid crossing mid-block and wear bright, visible colors while walking around. In the case of aging well, perhaps we should get a little sanguine about it. In the literal, old-world sense of the word. Dr. Laura Miles specializes in analyzing each person’s blood in order to identify his or her unique set of health-undermining risk factors and then deploying tactics to mitigate them. She’s very much of the “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” school of thought. “I am all about prevention,” Miles says. “When a person comes to me, I evaluate



Dr. Laura Miles

where they are now, and then what we can correct or work on based on the results. Sometimes we can use supplements, sometimes we use medications, but we can almost always help a person feel better.” Turns out that Vitamin D is crucial at every age, and so is avoiding inflammation. “In the 20s, I like to check a person’s Vitamin D levels, because at that age people are more susceptible to HPV, and when our Vitamin D levels are higher, studies have indicated that it becomes less likely that HPV can take hold. In our 20s, we also often experience the first big hit to our adrenals, which are glands responsible for our stress response, because we often find our first ‘real’ jobs in our 20s.” Miles also takes a hard look at a person’s nutrition in the 20s, because college diets

are notoriously poor, and busy, newly employed, stressed-out 20-somethings need good nutrition. In their 30s, people are often feeling worn out. “This is when people often have small children, and their careers have progressed, and it’s often hard to tell if you’re just tired or if you are fatigued, which is very different,” Miles says. “The 30s are also a time to look for inflammation. Do you have joint pain of any kind? Bowel issues? Headaches? Do you feel swollen in the morning? These are things we tend to think are normal when we hit the 30s, but they are not.” In the 30s, Vitamin D is still important, as is B12, and optimal levels of cortisol and DHEA. In Miles’ own experience, she was deeply fatigued in her 30s, but the traditional lab tests yielded nothing but ‘normal’

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(L-R) Dr. Tracy McIntire, Dr. Michael Saumur, Dr. Drew Wendelken, Dr. Vincent Montgomery, Dr. Scott Searcey, Dr. Ross Martin and Dr. Kent Cohenour

Oral & Maxillofacial Associates, LLC North OKC • 3601 NW 138th St., Ste. 100 • 405.848.7994 Norman • 1112 Rambling Oaks • 405.292.8900 Midwest City • 2828 Parklawn Dr., Ste. 3 • 405.733.4296 Edmond • 2880 N Kelly Ave. • 405.341.4022 Connect with us: • “Like” us on Facebook Our Partners are Board Certified by the American Board of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons.



readings. “My doctor kept suggesting that I was depressed, but I knew I wasn’t depressed. I was tired.” At the time, Miles had two small children and was on her first career path. She was an ophthalmologist with a healthy practice. “I started researching possible causes myself, and realized that there were an almost overwhelming number of possibilities within those ‘normal’ results.” She found an organization called the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine, whose philosophy is to look for and mitigate underlying disease through nutritional intervention. Bells rang, birds sang and Miles was fascinated enough to embark on a fellowship, which changed her life and then her career. These days, she’s forgone ophthalmology for her current practice, and sees hundreds of patients a year – and she’s been at it for more than a decade. When we hit our 40s, hormones really start to come into play. This is also when cholesterol rears its oily head, and whether we’ve managed it or not becomes an issue. Vitamin D is still key, but now it’s to mitigate bone loss. In the 50s and beyond, it’s all about prevention: prevention of osteoporosis, dementia and heart attacks. Vitamin B12 is a superstar for 50-somethings. We tend to become easily depleted at this age, because we absorb it less efficiently than we used to. “Also, we take things for indigestion, like Nexium, which deplete Vitamin B12. A B12 deficiency can cause a real brain fog, which can lead to reduced cognition,” Miles says. To sum it all up, though, Miles says that each person’s biomechanics are uniquely unique. That’s why she advocates ultra-specific bloodwork based on the needs of each patient. Having said that, she has four nearly universal tips for healthy aging. Watch out for inflammation and figure out what’s causing it; it’s probably something you are eating. Know your cholesterol level, and manage accordingly. Keep an eye on your nutrient levels, especially Vitamins D and B12. And incorporate some type of exercise and stress management technique such as meditation or mindfulness into your life. Enjoy the living, take care of yourself now … and watch out for taxis.

Men’s Health

At Optimal Health Associates, we are very comfortable discussing intimate and personal issues with our patients. We bring this same sensitivity and empathy to our approach with men. Whether fatigue, weight gain, erectile dysfunction, loss of sex drive or some combination of these or other symptoms, our team can help. Each man is unique. His healthcare needs may be simple, or they may be complex. We will work together to identify those specific needs and design a plan to treat his health concerns. We will also give interested clients the opportunity to discuss disease prevention strategy for their long-term health. That plan may include: • Hormone Replacement Therapy • Laboratory • Supplements •


Call today to schedule your appointment for this or any of your healthcare needs.

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The Toss of a Coin

Oklahoma’s connection to a dark day in music history BY M.J. ALEX ANDER

The place where the dead men’s wallets were found is at the end of a grassy path, off a dirt road, off another dirt road, in a cornfield near the Iowa-Minnesota border. There are no billboards, no directional signs, no interpretive plaques. No admission fees. No souvenirs for sale. The contents of Tommy Allsup’s wallet What is there is a pair of giant glasses balanced between a couple of posts, in a sea of landlocked cornfields at the unpaved corner of the improbably The band was one of four rock acts promoted urban-sounding 315th Street and Gull Avenue, marking the trailhead of a halfas the Winter Dance Party. The series of dancemile path to the site where rock ’n’ roll’s first tragedy occurred on Feb. 3, 1959. hall concerts through the frozen heart of the The bodies of teen idols Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. Richardson, Midwest played 24 towns in 24 days, saving known as the Big Bopper, were discovered that morning, eight hours after a money by sleeping on the bus between gigs. four-seat, red-and-white Beechcraft Bonanza piloted by 21-year-old Roger The tour promoter arranged for the musiPeterson had taken off in a snowstorm. cians to be transported by old-school buses, Five wallets were discovered in the wreckage. The names taken from the which broke down time after time in the IDs within were announced as killed in the crash. Four of the wallets were on subzero temperatures. Conditions were so or near the bodies; the fifth was found in the plane near Holly. It was stuffed bad that Bunch was left behind in Michigan, fat with the paperwork of life: torn notebook paper with names and numbers hospitalized with frostbitten feet. Reporting of musicians and song lineups, black-and-white family photos, a deposit slip on the incident, the local Iron County Miner from First State Bank, an invoice from Shook Tire Company, a receipt from noted: “The men were lightly dressed and sufHammon Master Cleaners (Lawton’s Finest!) and one for a new amp for a fered from extreme cold of 35 below zero that 1958 Fender Stratocaster. morning with no heat in the bus while they An Oklahoma driver’s license revealed the name of the wallet’s owner: waited for someone to come along.” The bus Tommy Douglas Allsup. that pulled into Clear Lake, Tommy was the 12th of 13 children of Thomas Jerry “I still think about it nearly Iowa, from Green Bay on Allsup and Retta Maude Blakemore Allsup. His mother, 2 was the musicians’ 60 years later. I’m MIGHTY Feb. a member of the Cherokee Nation, was registered on sixth vehicle in 10 days. THANKFUL to still be here.” the Dawes Roll at the age of 7. Tommy was born Nov. An exhausted Holly de24, 1931, on her allotment in Owasso. He later said of cided enough was enough. TOM M Y A L L SU P his Depression-era upbringing: “Everybody was broke He chartered a plane for so you didn’t know you were poor until you called your dog to feed them and after the Iowa gig in the hope of getting to they wouldn’t come. Then you knew you were poor.” Fargo in time to do his laundry, take a shower At the time of the crash, the 27-year-old guitarist was a veteran performand get some solid sleep in a warm bed. He er. He had formed the Oklahoma Swingbillies and Tommy Allsup’s Range offered his guitarists the remaining two seats, Riders before being hired by Johnnie Lee Wills, who followed his brother Bob figuring the $108 – $36 each when split three and the Texas Playboys, to play regularly at Cain’s Ballroom. ways – charter flight of 440 miles would be a Allsup met Buddy Holly at Norman Petty’s recording studio in Clovis, good investment in keeping their sanity. N.M., and joined a 21-year-old bassist named Waylon Jennings and local As word of the plane spread, other musicians drummer Carl Bunch as the next generation of Holly’s Crickets. wanted in. Waylon Jennings pitied the ailing



‘IT GAVE ME THE CHILLS’ Bob Dylan on Buddy Holly’s magnetism

Richardson, who was battling the flu, and accepted The Big Bopper’s offer of his new sleeping bag in return for his seat on the flight. Allsup, however, was determined to escape the frigid bus, rebuffing the pleas for his seat by 17-year-old singer Ritchie Valens – said to be so unprepared for the weather that he was traveling without a winter coat. After the Winter Dance Party’s two sets at the Surf Ballroom, Holly, Richardson and Allsup were packed up and about to head for the airport when Allsup ran back into the club one more time, double-checking that there was nothing left behind. Thinking the group had already left, an excited Valens, who had been signing autographs, tried one last time to talk Allsup out of his seat. Allsup offered a compromise: “I’ll tell ya what: let’s flip for it.” And so they did. Valens called heads, and heads it was.

“That’s the first time I’ve ever won anything in my life,” Valens said as he went to collect his belongings off the bus. Allsup pocketed the half-dollar, took his loss in stride and went outside to tell Holly the change of plans. He asked Holly to pick up a registered letter that his mother had mailed general delivery to the Fargo post office. “Sure thing. But I’ll need your ID,” Holly said. In the freezing Iowa night, an exhausted Allsup tried to fish out identification from his wallet. Holly was impatient to get going. Just give me the whole wallet, he said. I’ll give it back to you later. And so it happened that Tommy Allsup boarded the bus with the equipment, fellow Cricket Waylon Jennings and the rest of the musicians from the tour, while Valens drove off happily to the airport with Holly and Richardson. Within the hour, the plane would be shattered in the frozen cornfield, its

Eighteen-year-old Robert Zimmerman of Hibbing, Minn., was in attendance at the Jan. 31, 1959, concert at the Duluth Armory to watch Buddy Holly and the Crickets perform on the Winter Dance Party tour. Two nights later, Holly died in the fatal plane crash. More than half a century later, the musician now known as Bob Dylan credited that evening as a key to his artistic success, noting in his June 5, 2017, lecture in accepting the Nobel Prize for Literature: “If I was to go back to the dawning of it all, I guess I’d have to start with Buddy Holly. Buddy died when I was about 18 and he was 22. From the moment I first heard him, I felt akin … He was the archetype. Everything I wasn’t and wanted to be. I saw him only but once, and that was a few days before he was gone. I had to travel a hundred miles to get to see him play, and I wasn’t disappointed. He was powerful and electrifying and had a commanding presence. I was only six feet away. He was mesmerizing. I watched his face, his hands, the way he tapped his foot, his big black glasses, the eyes behind the glasses, the way he held his guitar, the way he stood, his neat suit. Everything about him. He looked older than 22. Something about him seemed permanent, and he filled me with conviction. Then, out of the blue, the most uncanny thing happened. He looked me right straight dead in the eye, and he transmitted something. Something I didn’t know what. And it gave me the chills.” JULY 2017 405 MAGAZINE



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occupants killed on impact at an estimated 170 miles per hour. The wire services reported the five fatalities, based on the IDs found at the scene. Back in Oklahoma, a frantic neighbor was trying to phone Mrs. Allsup to tell her the news before she heard it on the radio. The band’s survivors found out around noon, as they checked into Moorhead’s Hotel Comstock. Tommy was able to reach his mother before the news hit, telling her of the coin flip and the last-minute change of plans. The band went on that night in a daze and, at the promoter’s insistence, continued the tour … for a cut rate, because most of the big-name draws were no longer performing. Jennings later told of how Holly needled him about not taking the plane, joking: “I hope your damned bus freezes up again.” Jennings’ reply, which haunted him for years: “Well, I hope your ol’ plane crashes.” He never forgave himself. Allsup’s wife at the time had a belt made for him, featuring the lucky 50-cent piece fashioned into a custom buckle shaped like a horseshoe. At last report, the talisman was kept tucked away in a safe-deposit box. In the late ’80s, he opened a short-lived honky-tonk in Dallas – Tommy’s Heads Up Saloon, a reference to the lucky toss.

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As time marched on, the plane crash stood for some as the moment America lost its bobby-sox innocence, ending the giddy effervescence following World War II and ushering in a decade marked by civil unrest, political assassinations, the Vietnam War and a new cynicism. Thirteen years later, folk singer Don McLean immortalized the tragedy with the epic 8-minute, 33-second hit “American Pie.” It was an ode to the end of an era. He declared Feb. 3, 1959, “The Day the Music Died.” Tommy Allsup’s wallet made its way back home in 1977. On a lunch break from a recording session of a studio album – ironically enough, Don McLean’s tribute to Buddy Holly – he went to check his mail, returning with a small box with an Iowa postmark and return address from the Cerro Gordo County Sheriff’s Department. Inside: the worn leather wallet and its contents, recovered from the wreckage. McLean blanched when Allsup showed him, and took an hour-long break from the session. When he returned, Allsup recalled, a shaken McLean declared: “We’re going to do some original songs. We’re not doing any more Buddy Holly songs.” Allsup kept performing and producing until the end, touring at home and abroad, winning accolades including a Grammy Award and induction into the


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territory ahead Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame. He died Jan. 11, 2017, at the age of 85, 57 years and 11 months after he was booked on the doomed flight, and was laid to rest at Fairview Cemetery in Owasso. Vince Gill performed at his memorial service. Paul McCartney, who considered him one of rock’s greatest guitarists, sent flowers. Late in his life, Allsup talked to an interviewer about the February night: “I still think about it nearly 60 years later. I’m mighty thankful to still be here. I don’t really dwell on it any more than I have to. “I guess my philosophy just makes me keep looking forward. I try to forget about yesterday, since I can’t do anything about what’s already happened. I know I don’t have tomorrow, ’cause it’s not here yet. Mostly, I can only do something about today, so I try to live it to the fullest and do what I’m supposed to. “You can’t dwell on the past. You just have to keep moving on.” His wallet, however, continues to tour. In the 1990s, it made its way into the world’s largest collection of rock memorabilia. It now tours the nation, from music festivals to concert venues, as part of Hard Rock Cafe International’s “Gone Too Soon” exhibition. Traveling with John Lennon’s round glasses, Janis Joplin’s hand-painted poncho, Kurt Cobain’s scribbled notes, Michael Jackson’s studded leather jacket and Jimi Hendrix’s Gibson guitar, Tommy Allsup’s wallet – contents fanned out, frozen in time like a Vesuvius-struck Pompeii – is framed and under glass. Jeff Nolan manages Hard Rock’s archive of treasures. As curator and historian for the 80,000-piece collection of pop music memorabilia, including tricked-out guitars, sequined costumes and framed gold records, he is often asked which is his favorite. His answer, in interview after interview: Tommy Allsup’s wallet. More than one surprised interviewer then follows up: Who is Tommy Allsup? Nolan will smile, and begin to tell the tale of the 12th of 13 children born on his mother’s allotment in Owasso, who won by losing a flip of a coin.


SETTING THE STAGE Turning an empty house into a purchased home


A F EW Y E A R S AG O, Glen Hubbell got a call from a client who

was prepping a Belle Isle house to hit the market. The higher-end home needed some attention, and Hubbell, as an experienced and accredited staging professional, knew what he had to do. He walked through the house, developed a plan of action and set to it. Late that afternoon, his work was finished – and by evening, the seller called and said the house was already under contract. Staging a house means bringing in furniture, artwork and accessories to give an empty space a lived-in look. It also often means the difference between a house that sells quickly and one that sits idle. “As clichéd as it may sound, people don’t just buy homes anymore, they buy lifestyles,” Hubbell says. “A well-staged home with the right photography will capture buyers’ attention. Staging is a key factor in the equation. I can only speak to my own results, but staged homes sell quicker than empty ones. I can confidently say [that] eight or nine out of 10 vacant homes I have staged sell in fewer than 30 days, and many in just a few days.” Stagers often act as the buffer between agents and sellers, he said, and staging vacant homes generates interest among online shoppers. “I mean, what does an empty room with four blank walls look like in pictures, right?” Hubbell asks. “Staging will also help buyers imagine how their own furniture will look and fit in the house. I think in vacant, unstaged homes, buyers start looking for all of the imperfections.”

Using the right amount of furniture and placement is vital, he added. He will also walk through the house and think about where he needs to draw a person’s eye using wall art, or by suggesting certain areas with furniture. Hubbell has been in the real estate business for about three years, and is an agent/owner at eXp Realty. He took a course in staging and became an accredited staging professional, thinking that it would give him an edge over other Realtors. “It certainly did not happen that way,” he laughs. “I formed the staging company at the same time I started real estate. The original plan was to offer free staging to my real estate clients; thankfully, it’s taken off in another direction. I did not do much staging during my first year, because I had no idea how to market myself and I was so focused on real estate. “Staging a home is so incredibly important if you want to sell quickly and get the most value,” he says. “Staging has evolved beyond decluttering, depersonalizing, deep cleaning and deodorizing. Remember, when you put your home up for sale, it’s no longer about you. The biggest part of my job as a stager is to get sellers excited about the process. The prep work is the hardest part, and it’s my job to make sure they see the light at the end of the tunnel.” JULY 2017 405 MAGAZINE



NESTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM A subjective survey of the best neighborhoods in the 405









That’s a pretty loaded word, particularly when it comes to neighborhoods, the evaluation of which requires that the subjective and the objective must find a perfect overlap. According to Georgie Rasco, executive director of Oklahoma City’s Neighborhood Alliance, there are more than 450 neighborhoods in the OKC metro area – and each enclave is a microcosm, with its own vibe. There are obvious distinctions to think about, such as proximity to the office, daycare, grocery store and gym, as well as a slew of other, more granular thisses and thats a savvy mover will evaluate before taking the leap and plunking down earnest money. Well-known neighborhoods along the lines of Nichols Hills, Quail Creek, Oak Tree in Edmond and Norman’s Brookhaven are great, but there are many others out there that may suit your specific quirks and must-haves to a tee, and it’s many of those we salute here. Carla Splaingard has been a Realtor® in Oklahoma City for 21 years, specializing in what she calls the classic OKC neighborhoods, meaning not new. Other words she uses to describe her turf include vintage and historic. She’s lived in many of them, and now calls Gatewood home. ““A good way to understand the tone of a neighborhood is to look at the distance between the house and the sidewalk, and whether there is a sidewalk,””Splaingard says. ““A more casually social neighborhood will have homes a very short distance from the sidewalks, and front or side porches, which encourage people to interact as they’re walking their dogs or having coffee on their porches. These neighborhoods have a casual camaraderie.”” Mesta Park, Gatewood, Linwood and Putnam Heights are among those short-yarded social spots. Drive or stroll through any of these on an early spring or summer evening, and you’ll see it in action: gaggles of neighbors perched in breezy, rattan-filled, fern-festooned outdoor spaces, gabbing over glasses of iced tea or rosé, while children pedal bikes or trikes nearby. Lesser-known mid-city neighborhoods include Military Park, Venice, Miller, Cleveland and Crestwood. ““I also really like Denison Park, which is bordered on the south by NW 23rd, and runs east and west of Drexel,””Splaingard says. ““It’s one of the few classic neighborhoods where you can walk to the grocery store: Eley’s Foods on May, which is one of the last old-fashioned neighborhood grocery stores. This is not the neighborhood for someone looking for nightlife, though.”” Denison boasts lots of late 1930s construction, Tudor revivals and low-slung Ranchstyle stone homes, with a hilly park in the middle. To the east, homes are more modern – mid-century contemporaries and cottages. The neighborhood has become a magnet for young families due to its quiet safety, great location and value. ““You can do very well in the $125,000 to $180,000 range in Denison Park,””Splaingard says. JULY 2017 405 MAGAZINE


““Gatewood is anchored by the church, and whether you are Catholic or not, the church bells give the neighborhood a unique heartbeat,””she says. ““They toll every 15 minutes, so when I wake up, I’ll tell myself that I can stay in bed until the next time the bells sound. If you know how to listen to them, they will give you information about what is happening at the church, too. For example, if there is a funeral and the person who passed was 90 years old, the bells will toll 90 times on that day.”” Classen Ten Penn is an emerging historic neighborhood bordered by Classen to the east, Penn to the west, NW 16th to the north and around NW 6th to the south. ““The last good collection of Craftsman cottages is in Classen Ten Penn, but the neighborhood is up-and-coming, meaning it may be too adventurous for many.

HOME IS WHERE THE MIND IS Thoughts from smart people who love their neighborhoods “I live in the Skyline Neighborhood. Love the big trees, mid-century homes and the sidewalks. Also, love that it is so close to Will Rogers Park [that] I can walk my dogs over. Access to the highway makes going anywhere easy.” ALEXIS PERSICO, Co-founder, Routed Connection and Yoga Instructor, Skyline Neighborhood, OKC

“I love living in the urban core because I love being able to walk or ride my bike to favorites in Uptown23rd, the Paseo, the Plaza District and Midtown.” CARY PIRRONG, Director of Alumni Relations, Oklahoma City University, Heritage Hills Neighborhood, OKC



“The homes were built in the early ’70s, so the landscaping is all matured and lush. But the biggest thing that makes the homes different from the cookie-cutter neighborhoods being built today is that each house looks different and expresses the owner’s personality.” JO ANNE EASON, Public Strategies, Vice President Marketing, Brentwood Neighborhood, Edmond

“I love Mayfair for the central location and beautiful mid-century homes. I am also close to my favorite grocery, Sprouts!” ADÈLE WOLF, Burlesque Impresario, Mayfair Neighborhood, OKC

I love the walkability and unique, architecturally designed homes. I love the view of the skyline, especially before sunset when the setting sun reflects off the downtown buildings, creating a beautiful, pinkish hue. It’s universally flattering lighting!” EMMA V. ROLLS, Assistant Federal Public Defender, Capital Habeas Unit, SOSA Neighborhood, OKC

“We’re a friendly group of all ages, and we really look out for one another. I love that my neighborhood is close to the lake and the Hefner walking trails.” KELLEY BARNES, Development and Donor Services Manager, Oklahoma City Community Foundation, Lakehurst Neighborhood, OKC

“I love The Hill! My place is perfect for entertaining friends and has the room for me to work from home, which I do a few days a week. The neighbors are wonderful, with lots of loving pets being walked around. The best part is [that] I’m close to everything – there are great neighborhood bars and restaurants, and Bricktown is walking distance for visitors from out of town. I have found my forever home.” SHEILA MORAGO, Executive Director, Oklahoma Indian Gaming Association, The Hill Neighborhood, OKC

“I love ours: Highland Village in Norman. It is family friendly, very active outdoors – people walking, running, walking dogs.” LORI PONDERS JOHNSON, Anglin Public Relations, Highland Village Neighborhood, Norman

““But if I had a million dollars, (Classen Ten Penn) is where I would buy and hold property. It’s walkable, historic and prices are moderate, meaning buyers will do well for $125,000 – for now.”” - CARL A SPL AINGARD -

“I love that my neighborhood is full of families. The kids outnumber the adults in our ’ hood, literally. We have a big family, and I’m so grateful to live in a spot where there are lots of other young kids for my girls to run around with outside. It’s a lovely vibe.” ALI MEYER, KFOR Morning Anchor, North Edmond Neighborhood

“I’ve lived in Edgemere Park over 25 years, and regularly have to pinch myself that I live in a gingerbread fairytale paradise. Close to all the goodness of the urban core of OKC, yet so far away from crazy city life. I love you, Edgemere Park – will you marry me?” MATT GOAD, Artist, Graphic Designer, Owner at GoadAbode Inc., Edgemere Park Neighborhood, OKC

“I love it that The Historic Paseo Arts District celebrates art in all its many forms and fosters accessibility to the larger community. Paseo is a special place that has won national and international awards for its people and their crafts, its unique and colorful architecture and the large population of artists and art lovers who live and work in the District. It’s a magical place.” DR. JOY REED BELT, Owner, JRB Art at the Elms Gallery, Paseo Arts District Neighborhood, OKC

“I live in Mayfair Heights. It’s a hidden gem with old trees and charming mid-century homes, close to plenty of shops, food and parks. With the addition of sidewalks this past year, it’s become even more family-friendly, and we love it.” ERIN COOPER, Principal/Creative Director, Cooper House, Mayfair Heights Neighborhood, OKC

“I love the big beautiful trees and maze of sidewalks, with porches often filled with what I imagine to be the most interesting and eclectic people in the city. As I walk, sometimes for exercise and often to eat at one of the local eateries, I find joy in the variety of gardens and historic homes – each with their own personality. My earliest memories are of this place, and I’m so happy to be home here in Mesta Park.”

“If you had asked me this 10 years ago, I would’ve said ‘Walkability, with access to a wide variety of entertainment and restaurants.’ But alas, I am a mom. So what matters most to me right now is not so much the neighborhood, but really, our specific block. It’s a place where kids run freely in and out of each other’s homes, and parents parent more than just their own children. It truly does take a village … and we’ve found ours for now.”

SARAH SEARS, Principal, S Design Inc., Mesta Park Neighborhood, OKC

TRACEY ZEECK, Founder, Bumbershoot PR, Belle Isle Neighborhood, OKC

“There are many reasons to love Heritage Hills, but the gorgeous homes, mature trees and location top my list of what I love most. The architecture is diverse and inspiring. Each time I go for a walk, I see a feature on a home that I hadn’t noticed before, and so many of the homes are so well preserved that’s it’s easy to imagine what it must have been like living here in the early days of Oklahoma City. At night, the tree-lined streets and glowing lampposts are dreamy. And as if the beauty weren’t enough, some of the coolest restaurants and shops in the City are just a walk or bike ride away.” JENNIFER KRAGH, Realtor, dwell. Urban Real Estate, Heritage Hills Neighborhood, OKC



Sharon Reeves

““Charm and restfulness greets me every time I return home to Crown Heights. Our proactive neighborhood association has restored, reforested and maintained all of the common areas for over 40 years. More than 100 trees have been planted and cared for by neighbors. So much energy, commitment and love by a historic neighborhood help keep our part of OKC beautiful.”” - SHARON REEVES -

““In neighborhoods like Crown Heights, things are a little less casual, although it’s a very social neighborhood. The homes sit farther back from the streets and most of the entertaining happens in backyards poolside or behind closed doors. You may know your neighbors very well; you may not,””Splaingard says. There are no sidewalks, but there are plenty of dog-walkers, runners and cyclists.



Sharon Reeves is a passionate, dedicated denizen of Crown HeightsEdgemere Heights, a neighborhood bordered by N Western, Harvey Parkway, NW 42nd and NW 36th. A self-proclaimed tree-hugger, Reeves has lived in her neighborhood for decades and, along with a couple of other neighborhood tree huggers, has implemented some of the most impressive neighborhood landscaping and tree planting efforts anywhere. ““We have an agreement with the city of Oklahoma City that the neighborhood will do things like plant and maintain the Shartel median from NW 36th to NW 43rd, and the gateway greenspace at NW 36th and Walker. In 1993, when we took on the design and planting of the Shartel median, we commissioned the incredible John Fluitt for the design.”” The neighborhood went so far as to strike a deal with the city of Oklahoma City in 1987, and has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars since in planting, maintaining and reforesting its beautiful greenspaces. Until this summer, the city of Oklahoma City had allowed the neighborhood free use of water for the maintenance of those city-owned spaces; the much-appreciated gesture was recently withdrawn by the city under the auspices of budget shortfall. ““The level of participation in neighborhoods like Crown Heights and Heritage Hills is really exceptional, especially considering that those homeowners associations (HOAs) are voluntary, not mandatory,””says the Neighborhood Alliance’s Rasco. If less urban, newer gated neighborhoods with bells and whistles such as playgrounds and neighborhood pools are your jam, there are lots to choose from at multiple price points. Many criteria – architectural styles, location, school district and so forth – will be subjective, however there are some very objective criteria your dream neighborhood should meet, according to Rasco. ““Newer neighborhoods have mandatory HOAs, so it’s incredibly important to do your due diligence. Contact the board of the HOA and ask for the neighborhood’s financials, meeting minutes for the past year and covenants before you buy. Ask what percentage of people are behind on their dues, because that will tell you how seriously they take their responsibility. If more than 3 to 4 percent are in arrears, there may be a problem,””Rasco says. In fact, she continues, there have been many instances of people bringing lawsuits against their mandatory HOAs, claiming not to have been told of their financial and other responsibilities, and the courts have ruled in favor of the HOAs, saying that it’s the homeowner’s responsibility to understand what he or she is getting into.



““Get involved in some way, wherever you live. Serve on a committee. Bake cookies for a new neighbor.”” - GEORGIE RASCO -




If a neighborhood had an unoffcial celebrity spokesmodel … HERITAGE HILLS Wide

streets, regal homes, huge trees and quiet splendor. Low-key affluence. Politically mixed. Celebrity spokesmodels: Tom Hanks, Ina Garten

GATEWOOD Funky, friendly. Little kids in

school uniforms, neighbors hosting impromptu breakfast pajama parties. Celebrity spokesmodel: Diane Keaton in Annie Hall

MESTA PARK Looser than Heritage Hills, politically bluer than most of the state, eclectic. Celebrity spokesmodel: Chloe Sevigny PASEO HISTORIC DISTRICT Community gardens, lots of public art and creativity. Celebrity spokesmodel: Shirley MacLaine ANYWHERE IN EDMOND

The stereotypical Edmondite is affluent, maybe a little insular and upper middle class. Kids at home, many moms stay home, too. Celebrity spokesmodel: Samantha Stephens, “Bewitched”

SOSA (South of St. Anthony) Affluent, hyper-stylish. Upscale sustainability. Celebrity spokesmodels: Wes Anderson, Gloria Steinem LINWOOD PLACE Lovely, solid, welcoming. Celebrity Spokesmodel: Garrison Keillor

CLASSEN TEN PENN Edgy, arty, diverse. Celebrity spokesmodels: Tyson Meade, Wayne Coyne NICHOLS HILLS Wealthy, new

money and old. Becoming more politically mixed. Celebrity spokemodels: The cast of “Sweet Home Oklahoma,” Thurston Howell III

People don’t realize that they are becoming co-owners of things like common areas, and in some cases street maintenance, by moving into newer neighborhoods, she says. ““It’s like running a small business with a group of strangers, so you have to really do your homework.”” That said, Rasco also has advice for every person living in every neighborhood. ““Get involved in some way, wherever you live. Serve on a committee. Bake cookies for a new neighbor. The number one thing that makes a neighborhood great is involvement.”” JULY 2017 405 MAGAZINE


OUTDOOR ENTERTAINING Putting the backyard front and center





We can be our unkempt selves in the backyard. If the front yard is our best-dressed self presented to the world, then the backyard is our pajamas-anddog-cuddles-on-the-couch self presented to those we actually want to spend time with (mostly). This is not to say that you can’t have a fantastic backyard party, though, and with the availability of remarkable amenities from outdoor kitchens to high quality sound systems, the backyard can feel very much like a combination of the den, the kitchen and the gameroom. We begin with something that has probably never occurred to you: the American Cornhole Association exists. According to its website, the ACA considers itself “the governing body of cornhole since 2003,” and while it’s difficult to imagine the beanbag (cornbag?) game actually needs a Hoyle-esque rules committee similar to card games, the fact that the ACA even exists is a testament to how popular this “family backyard game” has become.

33 '

Foot Foul Line

Summer means more time outdoors, and for the past decade, in parks and yards and outside bars, that has included the simple beanbag toss game with the moderately offensive name. Without delving into its indelicate etymology, it’s safe to say the name’s meaning has undergone such a transformation in recent years that parents now use it without hesitation around their children. For a primer on the rules – it’s a beanbag and a hole in a board, so the concept should be simple – consult the ACA website, which is too fun not to include: Honestly, we don’t care what gets you outside during the summer months, but we do think everyone should spend time in the sun (protected, of course), eating and drinking with friends and family, swimming, telling stories and enjoying the sunset at the end of a day – one of the few rewards we in Oklahoma get for enduring desert heat with swamp humidity during the summer months. The best place for that is often the backyard, a haven for families who live on patios and pool decks because the dogs can roam freely and the small children can’t wander out into the road. JULY 2017 405 MAGAZINE




Everyone we talked to mentioned one thing when we asked about backyard entertaining: grilling. They didn’t just say grilling, though. Most of them said “grilling burgers.” If the hamburger is the quintessential American food, and it probably is, its popularity only grows during the summer months. Sure, a burger on a flattop tastes fine, but one cooked on a grill is an American holy object. Chef Kurt Fleischfresser talked to us about some finer points of burger creation, and since he’s one of the founders of Irma’s Burger Shack, and because one of the German nouns in his last name actually means meat (fleisch = flesh = meat), he knows what he’s talking about. “There are so many considerations in what seems a simple dish,” Fleischfresser says. “The meat can be a blend of different meats – beef, pork, lamb, bison – and if you add cheese, you think about which. What kind of lettuce or greens? Where are the textures going to come from? Onions? Tomatoes? Lettuce? You need acid from pickles or some other source.” Against the “simple” meat and cheese and bread construction, Fleischfresser believes that a burger is a combination of flavors and textures. This is how chefs think about food, after all, so burgers are not exempt from construction and deconstruction. The general things to keep in mind, according to Fleischfresser: Fat content needs to be about 20 percent. That helps keep the burger from drying out, and fat adds flavor. The leaner the meat, the more difficult it is to keep the burger juicy. Bison is typically the leanest burger meat, so it’s usually best to add fat content from sausage or fatty beef. Pickles. You need them. They add acid that cuts through all the fat from the meat and the cheese. If you hate dill pickles, there are dozens of options beyond the classic pickle chip. “They are a foil,” Fleischfresser says. “They offset and highlight the other flavors, [and] a burger is a balance of all these offset and highlighted flavors.” Lettuce? He said iceberg is fine, but he prefers mizuna. Again, think in terms of texture, crunch and counterpoint.



MORE FOR THE GRILL Patrick Clark II is the chef/ owner of The Red Cup, and if you ask vegetarians and vegans around the metro, they’ll tell you he’s maybe the best vegan chef in OKC. We asked him about vegetables for the grill. “Summer is squash season,” Clark says. “I like zucchini and yellow squash, as well as beets – red or gold. The gold ones add a little sweetness. For amateur cooks, they’re simple to skewer and grill. Blanch them first, and finish them on the grill.” As for the blanching process, Clark said to boil them to the point they are still a little firm, and then plunge them in cold water. That will stop the cooking process until you’re ready to throw them on the grill. For something totally different in your vegetable lineup, Clark suggests kohlrabi, a vegetable in the cabbage family that is slightly sweeter than cabbage and turnips. The German word literally means cabbage-turnip, and like its namesakes, it can be eaten raw or cooked. Slice it thin to make wraps or add to salads. Many European restaurants cube it and use it much like turnips, parsnips or potatoes, and it works really well on the grill, too. JULY 2017 405 MAGAZINE


BOOZE FOR THE BACKYARD No glass on the patio or pool deck is a common, sensible rule. That typically means ugly plastic tumblers from pizza joints or other local eateries.


For the wine drinkers, cans are making inroads, but most people are still skeptical of the quality. One way to fix this is to buy wine in cans from Alloy, Fiction and Method Aluminum. The quality is excellent, and the price is slightly above the competition, mainly because of that quality. They even make sparkling wines. If that’s not your thing, then consider purchasing some GoVino plastic wine glasses. They’re top-rack safe, and they are shaped like real wine glasses to maximize aromatics. The thumb notch makes them easy to hold, even for pool-wrinkled fingers. Wine in a box has become a staple, such that people no longer hang their heads in shame while carrying it from a liquor store. Summer is rosé season, so you can pick up the brand-new Domaine Roger Perrin at your favorite wine shop and enjoy the equivalent of three bottles of French rosé. For backyard drinking, simply remove the bladder from the bag and drop it on ice. Hoxie Spritzers are relatively new to Oklahoma, and they hit two important marks: they are low-cal, low-sugar refreshers with low alcohol, and they can be enjoyed as they are – in the can – or blended into a delicious cocktail. Ryan Goodman at R&J Supper Club used the Lemon Linden Hoxie Spritzer with 1.5 ounces of blanco tequila and a splash of fresh lemon juice to make a simple, quaffable patio cocktail.

Keeping mosquitos away is critical to everyone’s happiness. Some of us are basically mobile Golden Corrals for the tiny parasites, and we will stay outside only until the first mosquito finds us. There is no sense in pretending they are not an issue, which leads to this critical point: Most (all) non-chemical remedies do not work. Citronella smells wonderful. I’m sure mosquitos feel the same as they fly through the smoke of the citronella candles on their way to feast on my pale flesh. Some things we just have to be honest about: Local honey does not help allergies; Chacos are leftover tire rubber and seatbelt nylon, not shoes; and citronella is a better air freshener than mosquito repellent. According to the State Department of Health, there are approximately 60 mosquito varieties in Oklahoma. The overwhelming majority of the bites are the work of three species with long, unpronounceable names, and they have one very important thing in common: DEET, a common insect repellent, works against them, and DEET, because it’s based on science and not wishful thinking, also functions with mathematical simplicity. A product that has 2050 percent DEET will provide fiveeight hours of protection, plenty of time for a backyard party. While we’re on the subject of science, no one seems to know why mosquitos prefer some humans to others. Scientists believe it’s related to our unique smell, but how or if diet or other factors affect this is a mystery. Be leery of people who tell you that the secret is garlic or some other natural remedy. You can put cloves in your ears or pour coffee on your feet (this is easier if you’re wearing Chacos), but they aren’t likely to be the key.



Mosquitos exist to ruin your backyard fun.


Finding someone in Oklahoma who knows more about backyard entertaining than Kamala Gamble would be nearly impossible. The chef, gardener and catering genius was a pioneer in the fresh, local produce market in Oklahoma restaurants, and she continues to drive the industry with her products and ideas. We asked her for a favorite summer dinner menu for the grill – the grill part was her idea – that requires very little prep time. Her executive chef Barbara Mock helped with some of the answers, too. “Smoked okra,” Gamble says, right out of the gate. She then deferred to Mock: “I use pecan wood,” Mock says. “After the smoke gets going, throw the okra on the grill on indirect heat. Dry; no oil or seasoning. Leave the caps on; they make good handles. Five minutes on each side, and then toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. That’s it. The best part is that smoking them means no slime.” Corn is one of summer’s most iconic dishes, and Gamble likes it on the grill, too. Mock said to grill it five minutes per side, with the husks off to get grill marks. She melts butter ahead of time, and adds cayenne powder for a little heat. “You don’t have to overcomplicate summer produce, though,” Gamble adds. “A sliced heirloom tomato from the farmers’ market, like a Cherokee Purple, with a little salt is delicious. I also love Armenian cucumbers. I think they work well even for people who don’t normally like cucumbers.” The Armenian cucumber can get as big as a small human’s arm, and they pack a ton of flavor. For the salad course, Gamble’s favorite summer salad is a traditional Panazanella with Armenian cucumbers, fresh basil, a touch of feta cheese and a drizzle of excellent balsamic vinegar. For the entrée, Gamble likes pork tenderloin, and for dessert, grilled peaches. “We grill them with skins on, halved, on indirect heat,” she says. Mock adds, “You only need about two minutes per side or they will fall apart.” They finish them off with a drizzle of local honey, a sprig of mint and a bowl of homemade ice cream. Alternately, try Gamble’s grilled watermelon: Use flat wedges or cubes and grill for one minute per side on direct heat. Finish

Chef Barbara Mock (left) tops off the watermelon salad

with a touch of feta cheese, mint and balsamic vinegar, or a lemon vinaigrette that Mock calls their “top-secret proprietary blend”: Mix three parts oil to one part fresh lemon juice, with one teaspoon of high quality maple syrup, and salt and pepper to taste and whisk. The maple syrup tones down the astringency of the lemon and adds a touch of sweetness. JULY 2017 405 MAGAZINE



Unless you intend to plop down on the ground or patio, furniture is an important component of backyard entertaining.

Beverly Hayden of J.C. Swanson’s Fireplace & Patio in Edmond offered some advice on patio furniture, beginning with the idea that seated conversation occupies far more time than actual eating, so it’s a good idea to think beyond the old table-andchairs motif. What’s a good starting budget for a nice patio set? “For a nice iron, dining table and four dining chairs, the starting point would be $1,000. However, there are so many different styles of collections from the different manufacturers that if you begin with a collection that is popular and in a finish that is considered standard, additional pieces can be obtained year to year until the amount of furniture needed or wanted is complete.” What kinds of fabrics work well, especially in terms of cleaning? “The best fabric to use outdoors is from Sunbrella, which makes solution-dyed acrylics that are fade resistant and that can be cleaned with a variety of solutions, even Clorox.” Any attractive and practical ways to tie stuff down for windy Oklahoma days? “I know of nothing that can tie down furniture on our windy days. It’s all about selection of frame material: from tubular aluminum, the lightest weight, to cast iron, the heaviest weight, and everything in between.”


Savory Spice Shop demystifies the entire process of seasoning food for the grill. For the amateur, the alchemy that goes into seasoning mixes and rubs might as well be complex logarithmic equations. Gamble herself spoke highly of the quality of products coming from Able Blakley’s shop on Western Avenue. We asked him what products worked best with the food we were writing about.




Long’s Peak Pork Chop Rub. Made with hickory sea salt, the rub works as well on tenderloin as chops. It’s one of Blakley’s go-tos. Park Hill Maple Pepper Spice. Works for the tenderloin, and Blakley uses it for grilled sweet potatoes, too.


Makrut Lime Sea Salt. “It’s awesome on grilled corn, and it’s

Metal, wood, plastic, glass? What’s best for patio furniture and why? Any downsides to these materials? “Again, it’s all about placement. Everyone loves the look and durability of wood, especially teak; however, to keep its golden color, teak requires a little sanding and the re-applications of solutions to keep that color. If you favor the wood look but don’t want the upkeep, the Envirowood/plastic furniture is the best alternative. Aluminum requires the least amount of maintenance; however, is not maintenance-free. A little Pledge or clear wax goes a long way to keep the frames looking good. “You can’t ‘kill’ wrought iron with its weight and durability, but you have to be ready to deal with a little rusting should the metal become exposed through the paint. Again, a little maintenance in finding and re-sealing those areas with a little paint or new foot glides, and you’ll be good to go. Glass is just not sold as much any more, however, it is inexpensive and easy to maintain, and it is replaceable in case of breakage.”

the proper name of the racially offensive kaffir lime,” Blakley says. Bonus: this one makes a great salt for margarita rims. County Clare Blend. A delicious combination of onion, lemon peel, thyme and other herbs and seasonings. Fumee de Sel. Wood chips from French Chardonnay barrels are used to smoke the salt in this blend. What else do you need to know?


Great Plains Bison and Beef Rub. This one was created in Blakley’s shop. A rich blend of coffee, coriander, thyme and other ingredients. Mix it in with the meat and then sprinkle a little more on top.


Mount Olympus Blend. A Greek-style seasoning with citrus and mint. Perfect for lamb burgers with tzatziki.




Drinks or dinner? Browsing or buying? Whatever it is you’re looking for, you can find it on Western Avenue. We’re home to an eclectic mix of your favorite restaurants, retailers and reliable services. Stroll our sidewalks, enjoy a relaxing meal and stop in at our one-of-a-kind shops.

Good finds. Good times. Every time. Visit our website for membership information


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our yard is a part of your home, and in good weather it should be part of your life. When you want to enjoy outdoor fun and leisure time in your own yard, you should be able to do so in complete comfort – and not worry about mosquitoes. Not only are they pests, mosquitoes can be dangerous, since they carry infectious diseases like the West Nile virus, Chikungunya and Zika. Let SWAT Mosquito Mist System take the sting out of outdoor living in your backyard with a custom mosquito control system. SWAT’s innovative misting system is custom-configured to the specifications of your property and your needs, giving you control over a network of misting nozzles that are placed almost completely out of sight, but make a clear,

remarkable difference in keeping your yard free of airborne pests. The machine is set to automatically spray a solution that targets and kills annoying mosquitoes, but your yard will be safe for children, pets and food immediately after misting. Included is a hand-held remote so that you can have mosquito control in the palm of your hand. Your system can be monitored by SWAT via Wi-Fi and that service also includes a smart phone app – letting you enjoy the outdoors in comfort, with a system that’s completely worry-free. SWAT also offers expert service for existing systems as well as scheduled yard spraying, so even if you don’t have a system installed they can help eliminate mosquitoes before outdoor parties and protect your gathering from uninvited guests. An Oklahoma-based company with 10plus years in business, an A+ rating with the Central Oklahoma Better Business Bureau and exceptional customer reviews, SWAT believes that “You have the right to remain outdoors.” Have SWAT Mosquito Mist System make your backyard great again!



home Rose-Colored Vision


Design expert Rose Clark is happy to apply her skills to her own personal space – the smallish area of her home office seems more expansive thanks to her careful choice of decor and furnishings. Fresh flowers, mattress ticking upholstery on the sofa and bright pops of color keep the room feminine without being overtly girly, and the white-fronted console and glass-topped desk are visually unobtrusive ‌ especially with an octopus lamp waving merrily to all visitors.




The Benefits of Expertise Rose Clark’s domestic visual magic BY CHRISTINE EDDINGTON PHOTOS BY DAVID COBB

I N T HEIR 38 Y E A R S of wedded bliss, Rose and Richard Clark

have lived in 14 houses throughout Oklahoma City – and Rose has worked her magic on each of them, as methodically as a surgeon and as magically as an alchemist. Many will know Rose from her home décor shop, Red Chateau, which she established in Casady Square in 2003 and which she recently downsized and renamed. Now called Chateau Design, the focus of the enterprise has shifted from retail to design services. “Before opening Red Chateau, I’d had a 20-year career in the staffing industry,” Clark says. “I traveled every week, Monday through Friday – and, honestly, missed out on a lot of my son’s



childhood, which was very hard. One day I was reading Oprah’s magazine, and the article was about what you would do with your life if you could do anything, with no financial worry. For me, it was open a retail design store and business. I decided that day, and I’ve never looked back.” Clark had two partners in the staffing business, and when she told them of her plan, and that she was sure she would be happier launching her new business, they were surprised and said not to make this big decision so quickly. “They encouraged me to take a vacation and think it over,” Clark recalls. “But I’d made up my mind, and I am so glad that I did.”

(Clockwise from top) Some of Clark’s tried-and-true techniques include keeping flooring consistent throughout the home. Its 3,500 square feet of floor space are all tile; it looks like pickled wood, but won’t scuff and is easy to clean. All of the baseboards in the house are travertine marble, which adds lots of subtle visual texture and helps ensure that the whole home is dog friendly. The Clarks have two Cavalier King Charles Spaniels: Mia, 8, and Bella, 12. In the dining room, a chandelier by Curry & Company adds bold, curvy sass to the space. The sitting room is the best spot for napping, says Rose. The chartreuse upholstered chair is now in its fourth iteration. “I have reupholstered that chair many times because I love it. It’s been mauve, red, leopard and now shades of green. The finish is original,” she says. The settee is a treasured Hickory Tannery piece that was a splurge when the Clarks bought it, but which will last for generations. In this room, Clark does what she does best. “Just layer it up. Don’t think too much about styles, just think about whether it will work.” Rose and Richard Clark literally raised the roof in this home. Originally, the kitchen was a tiny room with 8-foot ceilings. “Everyone lives in the kitchen,” Rose says. She opted to enlarge the kitchen radically and brighten it up. She recommends doing a house little by little. “I left the stove backsplash blank for two months,” she says. The large buffet beneath the mirror has been reimagined in soothing neutrals by Rose herself, who is a huge fan of the miraculous transformative properties of chalk paint. JULY 2017 405 MAGAZINE



The business isn’t the only thing Clark has downsized recently. Her client list is carefully and regularly pruned, so as to be kept small enough that Clark enjoys the work and is able to focus on each client’s needs in real time. “I am very picky about my clients. This is a very intimate process,” she says. “With any client, customer service is crucial. And so I make sure to stay in constant communication with them throughout the project. If I am entering the home to check on something, or deliver something, I text. When I leave, I text.” Keeping a smaller list of in-progress projects enables Clark to be flexible. A recent client needed a huge project – an entire re-do of the kitchen, floors, walls and furnishings in her home to be completed by July. Clark landed the project in May. “We did it,” says Clark, with no small measure of satisfaction. A total overhaul is not always what’s needed, though. “If anyone wants to make a quick, noticeable change, start with the lamps and lighting, and switch out the pillows,” she recommends. “A chandelier is an easy way to transform a room.” More smart advice from the master? Don’t go all contemporary or all traditional. Mix it up. Also, don’t buy anything unless you love it, and always keep the things you love. And for goodness’ sake, have fun!



(From top) In the master bedroom, all of Rose’s expertise and design rules are in play. Note the mix of styles and materials, kept harmonious via a judiciously applied color scheme and a deft eye for shape and proportion. A large soaking tub placed next to a picture window that overlooks the garden is a soothing respite after a long day of working major and minor design miracles. Large master closets ensure that no clutter need enter this pristine oasis. Overhead, the funky chandelier mirrors the one in the powder bath, providing subtle visual continuity in the home.



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home DÉCOR

Three Cheers for the White and Blue In praise of a classic pairing I T ’S SA F E TO SAY that you might never

meet a person who doesn’t like the color blue. As one of the top favorite colors that people claim, it’s almost impossible to find a shade that isn’t inviting, invigorating or inspirational. With hues varying from the sky to the sea, blue is quite simply the most relaxing color around. It’s no wonder that it is also an extremely popular color for the home … our haven from the crazy world we live in. Plus, decorating in blue and white isn’t just about hanging the traditional plates on your wall anymore: While those patterned scenes are still popular, and beautiful, the scope of blue and white has evolved into modern pieces, as well as reviving traditional ones – and these accent pieces for the home are liable to take your breath away. - SAR A GAE WATERS

(From top left) From ME Home, 2925 W Wilshire in OKC: Blue and white applique pillow, $225; Large solid outdoor pillow, $213; Toile indigo panel, $1,075; Pagoda tower, $1,180; Palace six-sided temple jar, $344; Legend temple jar, $248; Peony square jar, $224



(From top right) From Bebe’s, 6480 Avondale in Nichols Hills Plaza: Letter tray in Bali toile, $160; Bee bowl in Bali toile, available in small $220, medium $330, large $375; Small and large planter in Brooks plaid with gold knobs, $198 and $265; Cylinder vases (4 sizes) in Brooks plaid, $100-$198; Bud vases in fan pattern, $70 each

dining Vive la France!


Bleu d’Auvergne cheese, escargot, Jambon de Paris … a meal at En Croute is filled with opportunities to practice your French, including the name of the restaurant itself. (As a culinary term, it means baked in a crust; the restaurant uses it to refer to the warmly welcoming atmosphere.) Regardless of your pronunciation, the results – such as this perfectly cooked Provencal omelet stuffed with crab meat – are thoroughly tempting. Si vous avez faim, c’est delicieux.






IF YOU ’ V E N E V ER read Peter Mayle’s A Year in Provence, I recommend it – the account of an English couple’s first year of life after moving to the rural French countryside isn’t great literature, but it’s breezy, atmospheric and thoroughly entertaining, and much of Mayle’s attention is on lavish, loving descriptions of the incredible food he encounters at every turn. I found myself thinking about it a good deal during a visit to En Croute, the spectacular little restaurant tucked into the north side of Nichols Hills Plaza. Its website says the dining experience of their breakfast options for its is “meant to evoke the comfort and leisurely lifestyle the versatility and range of tastes, [management] team has enjoyed in the fromageries, cafes although for a more signature and bars in European country villages, but with an Amershowcase dish, it’s hard not to ican twist.” I will tell you that, whether or not you have a recommend the Dutch Baby. background in continental cafes for mental comparison, This immense creation is an En Croute is amply worth a linger. unusual texture, almost a comIt’s a classy, comfortably appointed restaurant that bination of pancake and soufflé, makes the most of its limited space, beginning with slightly sweet and lighter than the golden door that’s the introduction to an elegantly it looks. Think of it as the cool color scheme of gold, white, rich navy and paneled Cadillac of pancakes. wood. All the art is from the personal collections of the “My mother is from Sweden,” owners, including some transcendentalist pieces and says Stranger, “and my grandframed scarves, and much thought has gone into details mother used to make them for from the cozy couch up front to the unobtrusive but Christmas morning. The hard supportive chairs. The first sight inside is of the cheese part is doing them in a restaucase, presided over by managrant; they have to be made to order and served steaming hot.” ing partner and cheesemonger Because, like the soufflé they resemble, they’re prone to falling Crosby Dyke, who’s happy to quickly. “It’s probably the most popular breakfast appetizer; make a few selections for sampeople just get one for the table and share it.” ple boards, or the En Croute It’s only available on the breakfast and lunch menu, but at any plate’s combination of cheeses, time you can get the Brie Salad – the endive segments are a trifle charcuterie, a baguette and difficult to engage with, but there’s no arguing with the appeal of fruit – ours included a stuna warm slab of brie – or the huge, juicy patty of the house burger, ning Chorizo Iberico topped with charred onions and a sauce that Stranger alongside Sopressata describes as kind of a homemade ketchup – it’s deliband pate. erately reminiscent of the old Split-T but has notes of EN CROUTE Chef/partner blackberry and sorghum instead of just tomato. And 6460 Avondale, Jonathon Stranger for dinner, I wouldn’t begrudge you the short rib or Nichols Hills said the plate is roasted rainbow trout, but I’ll take any opportunity 405.607.6100 actually his favorite to savor a plate of Cioppino, a rich stew of scallops,



“We have found that there is nothing like a GOOD LUNCH to give us an appetite for dinner. It’s ALARMING. It must have something to do with the novelty of living in the middle of such an abundance of GOOD THINGS TO EAT, and among men and women whose interest in food verges on OBSESSION.” PET ER M AY L E

shrimp and mussels with a pesto-coated slab of bread for scooping up every delicious drop. By the way, if you’re looking over the menu and raise an eyebrow at the concept of a Market Price grilled cheese sandwich, that’s deliberate – because it isn’t a set dish, it’s intended to vary day by day to give the chefs and experts a chance to experiment with ingredients and recipes. “It’s a lot of fun, trying a bunch of different combinations,” says Stranger. During our visit, it was Grafton cheddar melted over a perfectly toasted baguette, with a house-made jam that I think was raspberry-based but tingled with just a dab of Fresno pepper. Five stars, would sandwich again. “I thought I knew a little bit about cheese when I met Crosby,” smiles sommelier Drew Tekell. “I have since retracted that statement.” The pastry chef is Chelsea Berry, and dessert should not be optional considering the range – slices of lemon olive oil cake, flaky pain au chocolat, house-made ice cream and a chocolate cake so decadent that I somehow feel as though I owe you, the reader, an apology. Yes, those are flecks of gold leaf on top. I know July is a season for hot dogs and burgers, but it’s also the perfect time to give your palate a bigger playground. Pate is delicious, exotic cheeses are delicious, and whatever time of day or scope of hunger you’re dealing with, En Croute has something bon for your appetit.


In just a few weeks, En Croute will have a new neighbor with a more meat-centric focus: “St. Mark’s Chop Room is named in honor of my father, who passed away last July,” says Drew Tekell. “We’re using Oklahoma Wagyu beef exclusively, from Ironhorse Ranch near Norman. We’ll have truffle-roasted chicken for two, a couple of seafood options, one or two desserts – it’s gonna be fun, but it’s small, six tables only. We’ll have reservations, but I always want to keep a table or two open when I can.” The new space starts accepting reservations July 13, and should open Aug. 7-8, after a preliminary test timed to coincide with a memorial family gathering. Stay tuned. JULY 2017 405 MAGAZINE




Where There’s Smoke … HIDE AWAY PI Z Z A seems an unlikely

place for a pitmaster’s career to begin, but the Stillwater-based pizza joint was Brian Cole’s first restaurant job. Cole is now the pitmaster for Maples Barbecue, Todd Woodruff’s new concept in Midtown, and their relationship began with pork butt and homemade barbecue sauce. “I grew a lot with Hideaway,” Cole says. “After five years, I left for school, and I bartended some. Eventually, I got back into food by taking a job at Whole Foods.” Woodruff reached out to Cole about the barbecue gig. “I had a fair amount of experience smoking meat at home,” Cole explains, “and at one point in time, I took him a jar of barbecue sauce I had made after I smoked a pork butt. It just kind of clicked from there and fell into place.” Like many of us, Cole’s exposure to food happened in his family’s kitchen. Both his parents cooked, and he remembers that often it was just to save money. Saturday mornings as a kid meant waffles or pancakes; his dad made them every weekend, as well as fresh baked bread on Sundays. “I still remember him teaching me to properly measure ingredients to make sure the recipe was correct,” Cole says. “Now, though, I only measure ingredients at work.” Work is now the Maples trailer, and among his other duties as the pitmaster, Cole is in charge of getting the meats smoked properly. Since his skills developed as a home cook, we asked him to give us a how-to guide on setting up a home smoker with a backyard grill. While the most ideal setup is an offset smoker, a charcoal or gas grill can be used to smoke food in the backyard.

CHARCOAL GRILL These have a bit more flexibility, especially depending on the shape. Basically, what you want to do is build your fire on



one side of the grill, and smoke on the other. Keep in mind that when smoking, you really just need a good coal bed to start, then feed that coal bed chunks of wood to produce smoke.  To do this, ignite either chunks of wood or charcoal in a chimney starter, or in the bottom of the grill. Once the wood has burned into coal, or the charcoal has ashed over, push the bed to one side of the grill. From there, feed wood chunks into the coal bed throughout the smoking process to keep your temperatures up. I would remove the grate from this side of the grill for access. Starting out, I just used charcoal to start the fire and reserved the wood for the actual smoking; either way is acceptable. For wood, Cole recommends post oak: “The flavor is nice and mellow, not overly smoky.” There are all kinds of options, though, and some work well with different cuts and foods. Cole said to definitely avoid green wood, or wood that is fresh. “The smoke tastes off. For weekend warriors, bags of wood chunks and split logs are available at grocery and hardware stores. I’ve had good results with these.” Another surprising source: Craigslist. “Just search for ‘well-seasoned wood,’” Cole says. We’re not sure how to feel about this advice, but he’s the pitmaster.

GAS GRILL You can produce smoked meats from a gas grill, but you’re a bit more limited, because you’ll have to buy wood chips, not chunks for a gas grill. (Chunks are

fist-sized; chips are just that – chipsized.) Some companies sell small metal boxes to put the wood chips in, which are nice if you’re going to be doing this often, and you should be able to find them at a hardware store. However, you can also get the same results with foil. Basically, you’re going to build a foil packet to put wood chips in. Take an 18-inch-long piece of foil and fold it in half, then fold the top and bottom inch in two times to create a pocket. Throw wood chips into the pocket and fold the top down. You should have a little packet of wood in foil. Place this flat on the grill, and then pierce the top half a few times so smoke can escape. Turn on the burner on the packet side to medium-high heat. This should quickly produce smoke. You will have to make a few packets, as these will burn out quickly. On a gas grill, I wouldn’t suggest larger pieces of meat like brisket or pork butt. Things like chicken, pork chops and smaller cuts of meat should be great in this scenario.  - GREG HORTON (Editor’s note: For Cole’s beer-can chicken recipe, see the online version of this story at


Brian Cole’s guide to backyard meats

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$ most entrees under $10 $$ most entrees $10 to $25 $$$ most entrees over $25 outdoor dining reservations accepted valet parking new or updated entry

American ANCHOR DOWN Sip a beer or specialty cocktail and munch on a selection of gourmet corndogs in this fresh Deep Deuce concept housed within repurposed shipping containers. 30 NE 2nd, OKC, 605.8070 $ AURORA Its warmly comfortable atmosphere makes a perfect backdrop for a quick cup of Hoboken coffee or hearty breakfast or lunch assembled from superb ingredients – just be certain not to miss the beautiful secluded backyard area. 1704 NW 16th, OKC, 609.8854 $ BACON Sometimes the name says it all. Noted OKC chef Sean Cummings fills a menu – from soup and salads through sandwiches, entrees and desserts – with tempting taste combinations that feature one of America’s favorite theme ingredients. 7523 N May, OKC, 848.4868 $$ CAFÉ 501 Rustic stone oven pizzas, fresh salads and specialty sandwiches on housemade artisan breads. Add welcoming atmosphere and enjoy. 501 S Boulevard, Edmond, 359.1501; 5825 NW Grand, OKC, 844.1501 $$ DEEP FORK GRILL Crisply elegant atmosphere complements the menu of superb seafood (wood-grilled cedar plank salmon is a house specialty), steaks and accoutrements. 5418 N Western, OKC, 848.7678 $$ EDDIE’S BAR & GRILL This stylish spot not far from UCO is equally ideal for a casual drink, appetizers while watching the game or a dinner date. And bear in mind that the wings are outstanding. 930 E 2, Edmond, 285.7725 $$ FAT DOG This flavor-filled kitchen and bar dishes up treats from fish and chips to a killer Cobb salad … but if you just want to cool your heels on the patio with burgers, hot dogs and beer, you’re in the right place. 1234 N Western, OKC, 609.3647 $ FLINT Approachably casual style, plus the kitchen’s impeccably serious attention to detail in the outstanding contemporary cuisine, winningly combined in the



Colcord Hotel. 15 N Robinson, OKC, 601.4300 $$

10th, OKC, 605.3771 $$

HATCH They call it “early mood food,” and if you find yourself in the mood for a sumptuous made-from-scratch breakfast (or lunch), it should be right up your Automobile Alley. 1101 N Broadway, OKC, 232.3949 $$

PICASSO CAFÉ Their neighbors in the Paseo are painters, potters and sculptors, so it’s apt that creativity abounds in these zippy sandwiches, salads, pizza and surprises, including plentiful selections for vegetarians. 3009 Paseo, OKC, 602.2002 $

THE HUTCH ON AVONDALE The all-time classic Coach House receives an update with a more modern menu sprinkled with experimental twists, and a full suite of tempting cocktails, wines and spirits. 6437 Avondale, OKC, 842.1000 $$ HEFNER GRILL Upscale fare of handcut steaks and seafood plus a tempting brunch to boot, enhanced by a live piano and a spectacular view overlooking scenic Lake Hefner. 9201 Lake Hefner Pkwy, OKC, 748.6113 $$ THE JONES ASSEMBLY It’s noteworthy as a spectacular concert venue, but don’t overlook the kitchen’s output the rest of the time. The bar (try a Frosé) and main menu (try everything) are sufficient to make memories even on non-special occasions. 901 W Sheridan, OKC, 212.2378 $ $ KITCHEN NO. 324 A seasonally inspired café and craft bakery serving spectacular rustic American cuisine. Open for lunch and dinner, and a thorough treat for breakfast or brunch. 324 N Robinson, OKC, 763.5911 $ LEGACY GRILL The décor is rich with artifacts and imagery honoring Oklahoma’s great leaders and stars, and the menu’s collection includes more than a few greats of its own. 224 Johnny Bench, OKC, 701.3535 $$ MARY EDDY’S Inside the inviting environs of Film Row anchor 21c Museum Hotel, this showplace of a restaurant turns out a seasonally driven menu of expertly tuned flavors and dishes meant to be shared. 900 W Main, OKC, 982.6900 $$ MEATBALL HOUSE The focus in this Campus Corner restaurant is right where the name says, but the variety in salads/ sandwiches/pizza/pasta gives a surprising breadth of satisfying dining options. 333 W Boyd, Norman, 701.3800 $$ NIC’S PLACE Already justly renowned for his skill at the grill, burger master Justin Nicholas offers breakfast, dinner, drinks and late night treats served in outstanding style at this Midtown diner and lounge. 1116 N Robinson, OKC, 601. 9234 $$ PACKARD’S NEW AMERICAN KITCHEN They’re not kidding about the “new” – the entire lunch and dinner menus are filled with innovative tastes for a distinctive dining experience. 201 NW

THE R&J LOUNGE AND SUPPER CLUB A sentimental dining experience

with vintage recipes and atmosphere. Seating is limited but the patio is a year-round treat, and the drinks menu is a thing of beauty. 320 NW 10th, OKC, 602.5066 $$ REDROCK CANYON GRILL Rotisserie chicken, enchiladas, pork chops and steak by the lake in a casual, energetic, hacienda-style atmosphere of stone walls and mahogany beams around an open kitchen. 9221 E Lake Hefner Pkwy, OKC, 749.1995; 1820 Legacy Park, Norman, 701.5501 $$ SATURN GRILL A star of the lunchtime stage in Nichols Hills Plaza, its rotation of daily specials and tasty twists on pizza, sandwiches and salads keep it crowded on weekdays. Calling ahead is recommended. 6432 Avondale, OKC, 843.7114 $ SCRATCH Isn’t that the best place for food to come from? Top-of -the-line ingredients are combined into entrees and sides that are carefully concocted in-house, as are the bevy of wondrous craft cocktails. 132 W Main, Norman, 801.2900 $$ SUNNYSIDE DINER A new day dawns for breakfast and lunch on the west side of downtown as a former service station becomes a no-pretense, made-fromscratch diner. Order up! 916 NW 6th, OKC, 778.8861 $ SYRUP The most important meal of the day is also the most enticing at this unique breakfast boutique serving a heaping helping of signature dishes (the crunchy French toast is something special) and Stumptown coffee. 123 E Main, Norman, 701.1143 $ VAST Keeping your attention on the steaks, seafood and other temptaitons might be difficult; the view from atop the Devon Tower is truly unparalleled in Oklahoma, making this a fantastic date spot. 280 W Sheridan, 49th floor, OKC, 702.7262 $$$ VICEROY GRILLE Opulent décor, comfortable environs and some outstanding cuisine make a strong recommendation for the Ambassador Hotel’s in-house restaurant; don’t overlook the brunch options. 1200 N Walker Ave, OKC, 600.6200 $$ WAFFLE CHAMPION A food truck that expanded into a brick-and-mortar location in Midtown, its gourmet flavor

combinations use waffles as the foundation for sweet and savory sandwich treats. 1212 N Walker, OKC, 525.9235 $ WHISKEY CAKE High-quality locally sourced ingredients, prepared using slow cooking techniques that’s a prime recipe for outstanding dining. Enjoy – and don’t forget the namesake dessert. 1845 NW Expressway, OKC, 582.2253 $$

Asian CHAE This pan-cultural treat puts a delectable influence on embracing traditional Korean cuisine and showcasing its versatility by blending its ingredients with dishes from around the world. Grab your chopsticks and enjoy. 1933 NW 23rd, OKC, 600.9040 $$ CHICK N BEER Wings and brews are

food for the soul; these freshly fried beauties are done Korean-style, and with serious flavor. Grab some kimchi fries and a local beer and enjoy. 715 NW 23rd, OKC, 604.6995 $ EL TORO CHINO Big, bold flavors from disparate cuisines are blended in this self-described “Latin + Asian Kitchen” - creating results that are as excitingly distinctive as they are delicious. 2801 NW 36th, Norman, 708.9472 $$ GUERNSEY PARK A hidden treasure on an Uptown back street, reflecting traditional Asian flavors expertly fused with a hint of French influence. Try the chicken lollipops and curry salmon. 2418 N Guernsey, OKC, 605.5272 $$ O ASIAN FUSION Sublime quality in a wide span of culinary influences – freshly rolled sushi to fiery curry – in cool, vibrant digs. Call ahead for dinner, because it becomes a packed house in a hurry. 105 SE 12th, Norman, 701.8899 $$ SAII With a dark, rich ambiance that elevates it over its surroundings, the captivating Saii serves expertly done Japanese, Thai and Chinese fare plus an extensive and adventurous sushi menu. 6900 N May, OKC, 702.7244 $$

Bakery BELLE KITCHEN Doughnuts, macarons, pastries and ice cream created from scratch, in small batches – making treats like these with care and passion makes a difference that’s easy, and a pleasure, to taste. 7509 N May, OKC, 430.5484; 30 NE 2nd, OKC, 541.5858 $ CUPPIES & JOE The name is only part of the story: the Uptown nook holds cupcakes and coffee as well as pie, live music, a cozy, trendy vibe and more. Park around back and take a peek. 727 NW 23rd, OKC, 528.2122 $

ESCA VITAE Food for Life, the name promises, and visitors may well find themselves feeling revitalized after sampling this European bakery and café’s espresso drinks, selection of deli sandwiches and vast selection of tempting breads and baked goods. 1114 N Classen Drive, OKC, 601.0402 $ LA BAGUETTE Comfort and exquisite baking make a tres chic destination for brunch and beyond. They supply pastries throughout the metro, but the source is especially delicious. 1130 Rambling Oaks, Norman, 329.1101; 2100 W Main, Norman, 329.5822 $ PIE JUNKIE A Plaza District haven for serious pie aficionados. Call ahead to order a whole pie or quiche or walk in and choose from what’s on hand; either way the flavors are incredible, and you may never find a better Key lime. 1711 NW 16th, OKC, 605.8767 $ SARA SARA CUPCAKES The ambiance and milk bar make great additions to the variety of specialty cupcakes - selections range from traditional chocolate to blueberry honey and even bacon, egg and cheese. 7 NW 9th, OKC, 600.9494 $

Sparking Appetites Flint’s savory execution BU I LT I N 1910, the Colcord at 15 N Robinson was Oklahoma

City’s first skyscraper – 12 stories – and today the hotel therein is among the first tier of the city’s accommodations, offering guests luxurious bedding, flat-screen TVs, a 24-hour fitness center and other perks in spectacular surroundings. Unfortunately for those of us who live in the 405, those amenities rarely come up, as unless we’re on staycations we tend not to experience the finer points of local hotels. With, hopefully, one exception: The house restaurant Flint is eminently worth a visit from any and everyone, wherever they’re staying. The atmosphere is welcoming and the dress code fairly casual, especially on the excellent patio, but a quick look at the menu makes it clear chef Patrick Williams and team are taking their craft seriously – braised Swiss chard here, a citrus buerre noir there, fries spiced with za’atar … even the chicken fried steak has a red onion confit. We recommend starting with a bowl of savory vegetable posole, then attacking the thick, tender pork shank braised in Bourbon, topped with molasses gastrique (a slightly thickened sweet and sour syrup) and a zesty gremolata – that’s parsley and garlic chopped together and mixed with a dab of citrus, almost like an Italian chimichurri. Finish with a sweetly tangy key lime tart crowned with meringue and drizzled in raspberry coulis, and if you find yourself in need of a walk afterward, the verdant beauty of the Myriad Gardens is right across the street. Whether or not you’re planning to stay over at the Colcord, you should take a look at Flint’s menu – something is bound to light a fire under your imagination. - STEVE GILL



Bar & Pub Food THE BARREL The menu is well-stocked with intriguing and delicious twists on pub cuisine like shepherd’s pie and shrimp and chips, but the equally ample bar makes it a great spot to relax over drinks as well. 4308 N Western, OKC, 525.6682 $ BLU FINE WINE & FOOD Just south of Main Street, this sleek bar stands out due to quick, courteous service and a menu with gourmet range from mojitos to barbeque chicken pizza to fresh hummus. 201 S Crawford, Norman, 360.4258 $$ THE MONT While the food should tempt palates inclined toward a Southwestern zing, it’s beverages like the beloved Sooner Swirl and the primo patio (with misters) for which this landmark is justly renowned. 1300 Classen Blvd, Norman, 329.3330 $ OAK & ORE A Plaza District port of call built with repurposed rustic materials, it offers more than a handful of creative sandwiches that practically require a knife and fork, as well as a tantalizing selection of lovingly chosen craft beers. 1732 NW 16th, OKC, 606.2030 $ O’CONNELL’S IRISH PUB & GRILLE Beloved by students, alumni and townies alike, it’s served up killer burgers, beer and festive atmosphere since 1968. A St. Patrick’s Day must. 769 Asp, Norman, 217.8454 $ PUB W Multiple sections provide a choice of atmosphere, but the menu filled with choice beer and “new classic” fare from barbeque wings to pork chops is a constant pleasure. 3720 W Robinson, Norman, 701.5844; 3121 W Memorial, OKC, 608.2200 $$ REPUBLIC GASTROPUB Part beer bar and part upscale eatery, this noisy, amply attended locale pairs a vast selection of quality brews with tasty menu items, including a great burger

selection. 5830 N Classen Blvd, OKC, 286.4577; 13230 Pawnee, OKC, 907.5900 $$ SLAUGHTER’S HALL A good-vibe hangout in the heart of Deep Deuce, it’s home to great sandwiches and brunch options, a strong beer selection, a notoriously tasty take on poutine and some of the best mac and cheese in the city. 221 N Central, OKC, 606.6063 $$

Barbeque EARL’S RIB PALACE A popular choice among locals in a genre that’s hardly lacking in options, the local chain pounds out hit ribs and turkey as well as a top-tier burger. 6 metro locations, $ IRON STAR URBAN BARBEQUE Iron Star specializes in “a unique and tasty spin on comfort food.” While its entrees are excellent, the sides here are equal players as well. 3700 N Shartel, OKC, 524.5925 $$ LEO’S BAR-B-Q Dense, rich flavor and tender texture, delivered in genuine unpolished style for commendable value – no wonder its ribs and brisket are favorites among Oklahoma connoisseurs. 3631 N Kelley, OKC 424.5367 $ MAPLES This Texas-style BBQ stand does serve brisket, pulled pork and sausage in sandwiches, but considering the quality, you might prefer them, or the pork ribs, by the pound. And get in the habit of going early, because they’re in the habit of selling out regularly. 320 NW 11th, OKC $$ TEXLAHOMA BBQ Family owned and fabulously flavorful, its meats (especially the beef ribs) are eye-rolling good. Don’t forget the espresso barbeque sauce! 121 E Waterloo, Edmond, 513.7631 $$

Burgers & Sandwiches COW CALF-HAY This tempting burger spot offers ample flavor combinations, and the delicious never-frozen patties are mmmmmassive. Don’t forget the onion rings. 3409 Wynn, Edmond, 509.2333; 212 N Harvey, OKC, 601.6180 $ THE FIXX Massive, monstrous burgers and hot dogs, put together with thought and care. Don’t forget to get a shake or something from the full bar. 644 W Edmond, Edmond, 285.2311 $ THE GARAGE BURGERS & BEER It can get noisy in the sports-bar atmosphere, but even so your focus will likely be on savoring the many tempting flavor possibilities of huge, juicy burgers and fries. 8 metro locations, $ IRMA’S BURGER SHACK Hand-cut fries, hand-breaded onion rings and simply great burgers, especially with No Name Ranch patties - lean and flavorful thanks to a local breed of cattle. 1035 NW 63rd, OKC, 840.4762; 1120 Classen Drive, OKC, 235.4762 $



KAISER’S GRATEFUL BEAN Located in the heart of Midtown, OKC’s authentic ice cream parlor and soda fountain (it’s on the National Register of Historic Places) serves up shakes, malts, egg creams and homemade ice cream, plus burgers and meals for vegetarians and meat-lovers alike. 1039 N Walker, OKC, 236.3503 $ THE MULE Solid beer and beverage selection plus a delectable array of gourmet grilled cheeses and melts fill the menu at this relaxation destination in the Plaza District. 1630 N Blackwelder, OKC, 601.1400 $ NIC’S GRILL It’s small, it’s crowded … and it’s incredible. It’s only open for lunch and the lines are often long, but the colossal burgers are easily among the metro’s best. Don’t forget some money, since it’s cashonly. 1202 N Penn, OKC, 524.0999 $ S&B’S BURGER JOINT Good news: these burgers’ exquisite flavors - including such ingredients as peanut butter or a coffee crust - come as sliders too, the better to sample more kinds. 5 metro locations, $ TUCKER’S ONION BURGERS With one burger, one side dish (fries) and one salad, the menu is easy to remember - and the execution makes the meal unforgettable. Add a shake and enjoy. 4 metro locations, tuckersonionburgers. com $

Coffeehouse & Tea Room ALL ABOUT CHA Universal standards and unusual concoctions (the sweet potato latte is a wonder) in a cheerful atmosphere; the food options are worth investigating, as well. 5 metro locations, $ CLARITY COFFEE The vibe is crisp, clean and cool while remaining welcoming and comfortable – including seating for sipping or getting some work done – and the brewers have their beverages down to a science. As the sign says, “Drink the Coffee.” 431 W Main, OKC, 252.0155 $ COFFEE SLINGERS Rocking a brisk, urban vibe on Automobile Alley, it has become a gathering place for genuine java enthusiasts, especially during its periodic educational sampling seminars. 1015 N Broadway, OKC, 606.2763 $ ELEMENTAL COFFEE Seriously spectacular coffee roasted in-house - the passionate staff is always eager to share knowledge about the process - augmented with locally sourced salads, breakfast options and other treats. 815 N Hudson, OKC, 633.1703 $ ELLIS ISLAND Their brews use Eote Coffee (thumbs up), but there’s much more in store in this clean, cozy hangout spot – local beers, a selection of wines, treats

from La Baguette and Epic Pops and more are waiting to be enjoyed. 130 N Broadway, Edmond, 726.8831 $ RED CUP Comfortably ramshackle surroundings encourage curling up for conversation over great coffee, baked treats, vegetarian-friendly breakfast and lunch specials, and live music. It’s highly recommended. 3122 N Classen Blvd, OKC, 525.3430 $ T, AN URBAN TEAHOUSE Proving that an establishment’s focus can be at once narrow and broad, these retreats offer over 100 varieties and expert counsel to explore a world of possibili-teas. 519 NW 23rd, OKC $

Continental BIN 73 Think of it as a wine bar but don’t overlook the tasting menu - diners can fill up on filet mignon or simply top the evening off with tapas while enjoying the full gamut of libations and chic ambiance. 7312 N Western, OKC, 843.0073 $$ BLACKBIRD A Campus Corner gastropub pairing succulently creative dishes like pot roast nachos with a broad beer, wine and whiskey list. There’s little on the menu that won’t tempt palates. 575 S University, Norman, 928.5555 $$ CHEEVER’S Southwestern-influenced recipes (the chicken-fried steak is a house

specialty) and love of seafood drive the contemporary comfort food in one of the city’s finest dining destinations. 2409 N Hudson, OKC, 525.7007 $$ EN CROUTE A warmly welcoming, comfortable café in Nichols Plaza offers treats all day long, from fresh pastries to select spirits and beer, with special emphasis on artisanal cheese and charcuterie. 6460 Avondale, OKC, 607.6100 $ LUDIVINE The menu adjusts constantly to reflect availability of elite-quality, locally sourced ingredients - but every dish is the result of genuine culinary artistry. 805 N Hudson, OKC, 778.6800 $$$ THE MANTEL Marvelous steaks, seafood and other specialties combine with a refined atmosphere and outstanding service to set the stage for a truly memorable meal, especially if you have a date to impress. 201 E Sheridan, OKC, 236.8040 $$$ THE METRO A perennial favorite that feels comfortably upscale without exerting pressure to impress on its clientele, the farreaching menu covers culinary high points from vichyssoise to crème brulée. 6418 N Western, OKC, 840.9463 $$ MICHAEL’S GRILL Thoroughly urbane dining in an intimate setting: the steaks, chops, seafood and pastas are all reliably excellent, and the Caesar salad prepared



715 NW 23RD ST, OKC || 405.604.6995




Paint the Town Red Summer is sweet at the Skirvin’s lounge

TH E VE N E R AB LE , elegant Skirvin Hilton at 1 Park Avenue has no shortage of ambiance, perhaps especially inside its Red Piano cocktail lounge – named for a showpiece and key ingredient of its success. It turns out that the tinkle of ivories is a perfect soundtrack for mingling over beverages. Visitors will find a drinks menu packed with martinis, margaritas and various topshelf whiskies, tequilas and cordials – but bar manager Amy Nelms and staff enjoy shaking (and/or stirring) things up every now and then, so they also offer a seasonal selection of specialty cocktails. “We try to rotate out a seasonal menu about four times a year,” Nelms says; “it depends on what’s fresh and what we can do with it.” Their new summer menu offers some succor for the scorching months ahead in the form of, among others, the Spiked Berry Lemonade – a concoction of citrus vodka, St. Germain elderflower liqueur, strawberry puree, lemonade and basil – or the Blueberry and Thyme Gin and Tonic, which is exactly what it sounds like except for being even more deliciously refreshing. Plus, Nelms unquestionably knows her stuff: 405 Magazine readers voted her the metro’s best bartender in 2016. “It’s a pretty big award if you think about how many bartenders there are in OKC,” she says with a laugh. “Probably my favorite time is Thursday and Friday evenings, when we have live music at the piano. It’s really a nice, laid-back crowd, and with the wood floors and the red accents, it’s a very comfortable atmosphere.” There’s live music of some description Tuesdays through Saturdays. Check the schedule of performers at, or simply put yourself in the hands of the pros and trust that they’ll treat your ears as well as Nelms and crew do your taste buds. And cheers to an OKC classic. - STEVE GILL



tableside is the stuff of legends. 2824 W Country Club, OKC, 810.9000 $$$

plus a weekend brunch – what’s not to love? 421 NW 10th, OKC, 609.3300 $

THE MUSEUM CAFÉ A setting as inspiring as the OKC Museum of Art warrants something special in cuisine: delicately light or delectably robust, its European-inspired menu delights for lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch. 415 Couch, OKC, 235.6262 $$

INGRID’S Authentic German fare at its best, including outstanding Oklahomamade bratwurst. Join weekend regulars for breakfast, and remember the bakery counter. 3701 N Youngs, OKC, 946.8444; 6501 N May, OKC $$

PARK AVENUE GRILL A one-of-a-kind dining experience inside the luxurious Skirvin Hilton, blending traditional steak and seafood with the high style of its 1930s setting. 1 Park, OKC, 702.8444 $$$ PASEO GRILL Quiet and intimate inside, cheerful and comfortable out on the patio, with an award-winning menu filled with distinctive flavors inspired by the cuisines of Europe in both areas – try the duck salad. 2909 Paseo, OKC, 601.1079 $$$ THE PRITCHARD WINE BAR Tempted by tempranillo? Musing about muscat? This Plaza District stop is amply stocked with an extensive list of exceptional wines, and sampling the varied dishes is a pleasure in itself. 1749 NW 16th, OKC, 601.4067 $ ROCOCO An “East Coast-style” restaurant with a diverse menu of international dishes, all set off by carefully selected wines to create the perfect dinner pairing. 12252 N May, OKC, 212.4577; 2824 N Penn, OKC, 528.2824 $$ SEVEN47 A Campus Corner hotspot boasting sleek, swank décor, an appealingly broad menu including a tantalizing brunch and a consistently celebratory vibe - in toto that makes this a winner. 747 Asp, Norman, 701.8622 $$ SIGNATURE GRILL Unassuming locale; magnificent culinary rewards. The expertly considered menu mixes French and Italian flavors to present a wide spectrum of amazing flavors in a few select dishes. 1317 E Danforth, Edmond, 330.4548 $$$ WEST Expert staff and stylish décor augment a menu filled with treats from beef pad thai to roasted airline chicken. Don’t forget the zuccha chips! 6714 N Western, OKC, 607.4072 $$

French LA BAGUETTE BISTRO Les Freres Buthion have deep roots in the city’s culinary landscape, and this flagship combines fine dining with a great bakery, deli and butcher on site. 7408 N May, OKC, 840.3047 $$

German DAS BOOT CAMP Longtime fixture for Deutsch festivities Royal Bavaria has brewed up a second round of exceptional cuisine and magnificent beer in a less expensive, faster-paced location in downtown Norman. 229 E Main, Norman, 701.3748 $ FASSLER HALL Bringing German flavor to Midtown via house-made sausages, warm soft pretzels with cheese sauce, duck fries and a heftig beer menu,

ROYAL BAVARIA Superb takes on traditional dishes like Weinerschnitzel, Jagerbraten and sausages, plus fantastisch house-brewed beers. The time spent is a worthy investment in this familystyle dining hall. 3401 S Sooner, Moore, 799.7666 $$$

Indian GOPURAM - TASTE OF INDIA A full-service restaurant whose richly appointed interior and attentive staff accord patrons the feel of fine dining, even during the plentifully stocked lunch buffet. 4559 NW 23rd, OKC, 948.7373 $$ MISAL OF INDIA A Norman institution for over 30 years, specializing in tandooricooked delicacies and boasting healthy, natural, delicious cuisine served amid splendid ambiance. 580 Ed Noble Pkwy, Norman, 579.5600 $$ TAJ A tremendous set of Indian staples and delicacies - the menu has sections for vegetarian, tandoori, South Indian and Indo-Chinese specialties - plus full lunch and dinner buffets. 1500 NW 23rd, OKC, 601.1888 $$

Italian & Pizza BELLINI’S Tasteful in décor and Italian offerings alike, this romantic nightspot quietly, confidently exudes elegance. It’s worth a visit even if only for a couple of the namesake beverages on the shady patio. 6305 Waterford, OKC, 848.1065 $$ BENVENUTI’S Subtly flavored minestrone to rich, hearty ragouts, the splendid menu keeps the booths full and diners planning return trips to this vintage building by the railroad tracks; don’t overlook Sunday brunch. 105 W Main, Norman, 310.5271 $$ EMPIRE SLICE HOUSE Reigning over the Plaza District in New York style (that means thin, flexible crust with a lot of surface area to cover in cheese and tasty toppings), it offers whole pizzas or slices, a full bar and a primo patio. 1734 NW 16th, OKC $ FLIP’S WINE BAR & TRATTORIA Managing to feel rustic despite its location in a busy corridor of OKC, this cozy Italian joint keeps extended hours, and tends to get busier and louder as the hour gets later. 5801 N Western, OKC, 843.1527 $$ HIDEAWAY PIZZA If you’ve been serving a devoted following for over half a century, you’re doing something right. In this case, that’s incredible pizza in jovial surroundings. 8 metro locations, $$ HUMBLE PIE PIZZERIA There’s really no need to be humble about this



true Chicago-style pizza, boasting perhaps the best crust known to man. It’s one of our favorites; choose your toppings and think deep thoughts. 1319 S Broadway, Edmond, 715.1818 $ KNUCK’S WHEELHOUSE Homemade daily with sauces from scratch and local beer in the crust, it’s a tasty and varied stopover for Bricktown wanderers as well as a pizza-lover’s destination in its own right. 103 E California, OKC, 605.4422 $ MONI’S Handmade, New Jersey-style brick oven pizza and authentic pasta recipes from Southern Italy in a casual, comfy ambience (ideal for dates). 17200 N May, Edmond, 285.5991 $$ OTHELLO’S Garlic bread and warm mussels to tiramisu and coffee – all you could want in a romantic Italian café. ; 1 S Broadway, Edmond, 330.9045 $$ PIZZA 23 The tempting selection of specialty pies on especially buttery, flaky crusts is available for takeout, but dining in is recommended; the Uptown joint’s good beer selection and crisp, urban décor add savor to the flavor. 600-B NW 23rd, OKC, 601.6161 $$ PIZZERIA GUSTO Neapolitan-style pizza (which harnesses an extremely hot fire to quickly cook superfine flour crusts and quality ingredients) stars alongside Italy-inspired salads, pastas

and appetizers. 2415 N Walker, OKC, 437.4992 $$

Norman, 329.0377; 3000 SW 104th, OKC, 759.3580 $

STELLA MODERN ITALIAN CUISINE A luscious spate of legitimately Italian tastes for a casual lunch, or romantic dinner, amid stylish scenery. The weekend brunch offerings are especially superb. 1201 N Walker, OKC, 235.2200 $$

VITO’S RISTORANTE Homestyle Italian cuisine in an intimate setting where the staff and management treat customers like guests in their home. It’s a small space, so calling ahead is recommended. 7521 N May, OKC, 848.4867 $$

STONE SISTERS Seeking a healthier take on one of the world’s most popular foods? Stone Sisters aims to dish out deliciousness while focusing on superior ingredients, especially in its organic spelt crusts and vegan-friendly options. 2124 N Broadway, OKC, 609.6599 $$

VOLARE A flavor-filled variety of Neapolitan-style pizzas, produced with haste from a specially imported oven, fill this stylish Campus Corner space boasting a serious rooftop patio. 315 White, Norman, 310.3615 $$

TOMMY’S ITALIAN-AMERICAN GRILL An old favorite returns to the metro to provide fresh, plentiful doses of primo pasta and pizzas, always served with plenty of ambiance. 5516 W Memorial, OKC, 470.5577 $$ UPPER CRUST A chic, contemporary pizzeria and wine bar specializing in wood-fired, thin-crust New York-style pies complemented by a full menu and wine list. 5860 N Classen Blvd, OKC, 842.7743; 1205 NW 178th, Edmond, 285.8887 $$ VICTORIA’S A comfortable atmosphere, with local art on its walls and the art of pasta on its plates – the chicken lasagna and linguine with snow crab are especially excellent. 327 White,

THE WEDGE Wood-fired pies crafted from fresh ingredients (the possibilities range from pepperoni all the way to figs or truffle oil) and made-from-scratch sauces. 230 NE 1st, OKC, 270.0660; 4709 N Western, OKC, 602.3477 $$

Japanese // Sushi CAFÉ ICON Tempting sushi, Japanese specialties and delicious spectacles like steak cooked at the table on a sizzling stone fill the menu to bursting with visually splendid and palate-pleasing treats. 311 S Blackwelder, Edmond, 340.8956 $$ DEKORA Splashy, neon-accented décor sets off a sea of delicious sushi creations

in a Bricktown dazzler. Lots of variety, big drinks menu, extreme yum. 200 S Oklahoma #130, OKC, 702.1325 $$ GORO An “izakaya” is a Japanese pub; visitors to the Plaza District will quickly come to associate the term with expertly crafted deliciousness thanks to this cheerful spot for ramen, yakitori, bar snacks and more. 1634 Blackwelder, OKC, 606.2539 $ MUSASHI’S Exquisitely flavorful Japanese cuisine prepared with genuine artistry, thanks to the skilled chefs executing culinary performance art at tableside hibachi grills. It’s a great spot for a special occasion. 4315 N Western, OKC, 602.5623 $$ SUSHI NEKO An established OKC favorite combining style (sleek, brisk, classy) with substance (in the form of an especially wide-ranging and creative sushi menu). 4318 N Western, OKC, 528.8862 $$ TOKYO It’s neither huge nor lavishly appointed, and the menu focuses on tradition rather than creativity; but it’s palpably fresh and routinely cited as among the metro’s best sushi. 7516 N Western, OKC, 848.6733 $$ VOLCANO Creations from the hibachi grill or dazzling displays of handcrafted sushi prowess – this restaurant might not have much seating, but it’s certainly far



from short on flavor. 2727 S I-35, Moore, 759.3888 $$ YOKOZUNA The noodles, entrees and snappy drinks menu beckon, but it’s the rolls that stand out in this heavyweight contender for local sushi supremacy – personally, we’re partial to the 405 Roll. 13230 Pawnee, OKC, 500.1020 $$ YUZO Variety is the word in this sushi tapas bar, boasting a tempting swirl of Colombian, Brazilian and Japanese culinary influences. 808 N Broadway, OKC, 702.9808 $$

Mediterranean & African HAIGET’S Vegan-friendly – and friendly in general, due to the influence of the warm, patient namesake owner – this gem rewards the adventurous with Ethiopian and Kenyan specialties to explore and share. 308 W Edmond Road, Edmond, 509.6441 $$ MEDITERRANEAN IMPORTS & DELI The menu is stocked with authentic, quick and savory options from Greek salad to eye-watering cabbage rolls, and there’s even a mini-grocery stocked with select staples. 5620 N May, OKC, 810.9494 $

Intimate Dining Experience Since 1999

QUEEN OF SHEBA Practically the definitive example of a hidden treasure, the spicy, vegan-friendly menu of Ethiopian delights awaits the bold. Bring friends and be prepared to linger. 2308 N MacArthur, OKC, 606.8616 $$ ZORBA’S For well over 20 years, Zorba’s has satisfied appetites and pleased palates. Serving dishes from recipes passed down through generations, they proudly share flavors of Cyprus, Spain, Greece and Morocco. 6014 N May, OKC, 947.7788 $

Mexican & Latin American 1492 Authentic Mexican cuisine in an elegant atmosphere, combining its caliente flavors with fusion decor to make an ideal spot for a romantic evening ... including perhaps the world’s best mojitos. 1207 N Walker, OKC, 236.1492 $$ BARRIOS A serious collection of Latin-flavored deliciousness, including a brunch that’s maravilloso, in a cool Midtown space with a back patio that’s pure paradise. 1000 N Hudson, OKC, 702.6922 $

Steaks to Seafood Extensive Wine List Open for lunch & dinner 11am - 10pm

201 E. SHERIDAN | 405.236.8040 | THEMANTELOKC.COM



CAFÉ KACAO A sunlit space filled with bright, vibrant flavors from the zesty traditions of Guatemala. Lunch possibilities beckon, but it’s the breakfast specialties that truly dazzle. 3325 N Classen, OKC, 602.2883 $ CULTIVAR A farm-to-fire Mexican kitchen that stresses sustainability, local sourcing and fresh, fast, flavorful food. Gluten-free options, chef-crafted tacos, a substantial bar and plenty more are on the menu. 714 N Broadway, OKC $$ IGUANA MEXICAN GRILL Unique Mexican flavor in a fun atmosphere at reasonable prices - a treat from the house-made salsas to the handcrafted cocktails, and all the tastes between. 9 NW 9th, OKC, 606.7172 $$ MAMA ROJA MEXICAN KITCHEN A festive atmosphere on the scenic shores of Lake Hefner sets off a menu loaded with hand-rolled tamales, vendor-style tacos and signature dishes. 9219 E Lake Hefner Pkwy, OKC, 302.6262 $$ REVOLUCION You say you want a Revolucion? You easily might once you try this spicy taco-centric haven – start with the queso fundido and don’t stop until you reach the delectable arroz tres leche dessert. 916 NW 6th, OKC, 606.6184 $$ TARAHUMARA’S Beloved by locals (there’s usually a line but it moves quickly), this airy ristorante serves huge, tasty Tex-Mex classics plus less ubiquitous fare like carnitas de puerco and mole poblano. 702 N Porter, Norman, 360.8070 $$ YUCATAN TACO STAND A Bricktown haven for feisty Latin fusion cuisine such as paella and tamales wrapped in banana leaves plus signature nachos and combos … and a selection of over 75 topshelf tequilas. 100 E California, OKC, 886.0413 $ ZARATE’S In addition to the familiar joys of enchiladas and the like, the chef’s Peruvian heritage shines in dishes featuring plantains, yuca and imported spices. Try something different; find something tasty. 706 S Broadway, Edmond, 330.6400 $$

Seafood PEARL’S CRABTOWN A huge Bricktown warehouse where the Cajun Crab Boil is a favorite, guests are encouraged to “leave the silverware at home and dig in,” and taste is king. 303 E Sheridan, OKC, 232.7227 $$

BIG TRUCK TACOS It’s nearly always standing-room-only at lunch, but don’t let that deter you; spend a few minutes in line and get an ample reward in the form of fast, fresh, imaginative taco creations. 530 NW 23rd, OKC, 525.8226 $

PEARL’S OYSTER BAR A perennial OKC favorite for its flavorful seafood and spicy Creole-inspired dishes: Shrimp Diablo, Tabasco-infused Caesar salads, Andouille omelets at Sunday brunch and more. 5641 N Classen, OKC, 848.8008 $$

CAFÉ DO BRASIL It’s a long way from OKC to Rio, but the savory menu in this Midtown hot spot covers the distance in a mouthful. Even brunch is a spicy, inimitable treat. 440 NW 11th, OKC, 525.9779 $$

TRAPPER’S FISHCAMP Zesty, widely varied flavor from the Pearl’s family of restaurants finds a comfortable home in a backwoods fishing lodge atmosphere. Don’t forget the bountifully stocked bar, either. 4300 W Reno, OKC, 943.9111 $$

THE SHACK SEAFOOD & OYSTER BAR A massive selection of nicely spiced Cajun and Creole cooking, plus fried and grilled seafood, in an atmosphere that’s not shy about being as casual as it can be. 3 metro locations, $$

Soul Food BRENT’S CAJUN Sit down to a massive platter of jambalaya, crawfish etoufee, Pasta Orleans or any of the wellseasoned temptations on the weekend brunch menu – and spice up your life. 3005 S Broadway, Edmond, 285.0911 $$ C’EST SI BON The name is accurate: it is impressively good for lovers of Cajun-style catfish and po-boys. Crawfish etouffee, frogs’ legs, fried chicken and shrimp po-boys are among the highlights, but the award-winning catfish is a must-try. 101 N Douglas, Midwest City, 610.2555 $ THE DRUM ROOM March your own drumsticks in for a heap of crispy, juicy fried chicken (among the city’s best) starring alongside fried okra, waffles and a fully loaded bar. 4300 N Western, OKC, 604.0990 $$

Steakhouse BOULEVARD STEAKHOUSE Perfectly soigné ambiance down to the last detail and cuisine easily in the metro’s elite – a sumptuous, if pricy, masterpiece. 505 S Boulevard, Edmond, 715.2333 $$$ BROADWAY 10 Cruise into the Buick building in Automobile Alley to savor steak supremacy or seafood selections (even sushi) in a cozy enclave amid urban bustle. 1101 N Broadway, OKC, 212.3949 $$$ JAMIL’S STEAKHOUSE Saving room for your steak, lobster or prime rib is difficult when your gratis appetizers arrive in the form of a Lebanese bounty, but make the effort. Jamil’s has been feeding Oklahoma exceptionally well since 1964. 4910 N Lincoln, OKC, 525.8352 $$$ JUNIOR’S The classic restaurant’s decor sets the perfect stage for hand-cut Angus steaks and lobster to fight for attention with knockout fried chicken. 2601 NW Expressway, OKC, 848.5597 $$$ MAHOGANY PRIME STEAKHOUSE The ambiance and service are sublime, but fine aged steak broiled to perfection is the star. 3241 W Memorial, OKC, 748.5959; 100 W Main, OKC, 208.8800 $$$ MEAT MARKET REFECTORY The steaks are excellent, but they’re the tip of the ample menu’s iceberg: fresh seafood and Australian lamb chops command attention as well, and from Hatch green chili crab cakes to champagne sabayon, the carefully selected flavors pop and sparkle in this prime dining experience. 2920 NW 63rd, OKC, 608.8866 $$$ MICKEY MANTLE’S This lushly atmospheric social spot in Bricktown serves powerhouse entrées and sides with a full complement of amenities


Almost as old as the state itself, this Oklahoma institution’s immense corn-fed steaks and matchless atmosphere are history served anew every day. 1309 S Agnew, OKC, 236.0416 $$

destined to impress. 7 S Mickey Mantle, OKC, 272.0777 $$$ OPUS PRIME STEAKHOUSE It aspires to the ultimate in upscale dining via hand-cut USDA Prime Black Angus steaks, a vast wine selection and intimate ambiance. 800 W Memorial, OKC, 607.6787 $$$ RANCH STEAKHOUSE Customaged hand-cut USDA Certified Prime tenderloins and ribeyes, served amid warm Southern hospitality. 3000 W Britton, OKC, 755.3501 $$$ RED PRIMESTEAK Visionary design and atmosphere house super-premium steaks, vibrant, imaginative flavors and amenities to make some of the state’s best dining. 504 N Broadway, OKC, 232.2626 $$$ TEXAS DE BRAZIL Inspired by Brazilian churrascarias, this festive establishment offers diners cuts from their choice of skewers laden with beef, pork, chicken and sausage, in addition to excellent sides and a massive salad bar. 1901 NW Expressway, OKC, 362.9200 $$$

Thai SALA THAI Pineapple curry, basil squid, fried rice with crab, cinnamon beef ... the variety is exceptional, making this Midtown diner a popular midday option. 1614 NW 23rd, OKC, 528.8424 $ SWEET BASIL The enormous aquarium adds to the cozy ambiance; with its outstanding curries and specialty dishes, it makes a great venue for a dinner date. 211 W Main, Norman, 217.8424 $$ TANA THAI There’s a lot to like about the food in this little spot, from red snapper filet to pad thai. Pay special mind to the varied soups, and do not play chicken with the spice level. 10700 N May, OKC, 749.5590 $$


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(Clockwise from left) The Moonrise Hotel at dusk; Joe Edwards, entrepreneur and Big Daddy of Delmar, shows off one of his classic jukeboxes at Blueberry Hill; The Rooftop Terrace Bar at the Moonrise Hotel offers spectacular views and drinks.

SUNLESS ST. LOUIS Enjoy a front-row seat to a historic eclipse BY ELAINE WARNER

If you’re a Scrabble player, you have a one-in-a-3.9-billion chance of using the word “syzygy” (75 points if you can play it on a triple word score) in a game. If you’re in St. Louis on Aug. 21, you can sprinkle it freely into your conversation. On this date, the sun, moon and earth will be aligned in syzygy – a fancy way of saying “a straight line” – producing a solar eclipse. So what’s so special about St. Louis? A good portion of its southwest metropolitan area will be in the area of totality, a 70-mile-wide path where the moon completely covers the sun. By the time the eclipse reaches totality, it will be almost as dark as night. Birds cease singing and the temperature could drop 10 to 15 degrees. The eclipse lasts several hours, but the time during which the moon completely blocks the sun lasts only a few minutes. While solar eclipses are not rare events, being in the path of totality is rarer. St. Louis has not seen a total solar eclipse since 1442, when there was no St. Louis there to see it. So the town is getting ready for a big party – and praying for clear skies.



Although just outside the path of totality, the Delmar Loop in St. Louis is a must for stargazers of all kinds. The Duke of Delmar is Joe Edwards, whose genius, investing in businesses and rallying residents brought the fallen-on-hard-times thoroughfare back to life in the ’70s. The area, close to prestigious Washington University, is now a lively mix of boutiques, galleries, bars and eateries, with clientele as varied as the cuisines on offer. One of Edwards’ most spectacular enterprises is the Moonrise Hotel – a sleek boutique wherein contemporary elegance is blended with displays of space memorabilia. From Buck Rogers to moonwalkers, Edwards’ collection includes more than 1,000 toys, Art Deco items, Russian artifacts and personal paraphernalia from America’s heroic astronauts. His most valued item is a patch that went to the moon with Apollo 11 astronaut Michael Collins. Overlooking the rooftop bar – and a grand view of the city – is the world’s largest, manmade, rotating moon. That rooftop will be the site for eclipse watching, with special



Sunspotters at the St. Louis Science Science Center’s McDonnell Planetarium (above) will help visitors observe the Aug. 21 solar eclipse safely. The McDonnell Planetarium (left) houses the planetarium, as well as other exhibits – including “The Discovery of King Tut,” which will run through Jan. 7, 2018.

glasses for safe viewing, of course. The drink of the day will be the Eclipse – a sunny orange cocktail – and Clementine Creamery is creating Eclipse ice cream made with black cherries and purified ash. Edwards’ passion spills out onto the sidewalk where made-to-scale signs over several blocks give walkers information about the planets and their distances from the sun. Stars stud the sidewalks saluting famous St. Louis citizens from Ulysses S. Grant to Stan the Man Musial. This street was named “One of the Ten Great Streets in America” by the American Planning Association. Blueberry Hill, Edwards’ first Delmar creation, is a must-stop, as great food, live music and displays of more of Edwards’ collections of pop culture items ranging from Roy Rogers to record jackets make this a feast of taste, sight and sound. This six-block stretch is home to 60 restaurants, 10 galleries, 40 shops, 12 entertainment venues and a vintage trolley system. Delmar’s not only hot – it’s sizzlin’.

the Babylonians and Sumerians. Younger viewers will pick up the main gist while more sophisticated guests may get the finer points … although I must confess, I was in the gist group in spite of my years. There are experts to answer questions after the show, and everyone receives special glasses for safe viewing on the 21st. All the experts stress the danger of looking directly at the eclipse without eye protection. Regular sunglasses won’t cut it – you need glasses with polymer film infused with carbon or aluminized mylar material. The planetarium also has two Sun Spotters – wooden, folded-Keplerian telescopes that use an arrangement of mirrors to project an image of the sun onto a viewing screen – and filtered telescopes for daytime viewing. The weekend of Aug. 19-20 will be devoted to a science fest around the eclipse, while the 21st will feature a smaller event with live streaming of the path of totality. (The planetarium is 2,000 feet off the actual path.)



For scientific background on the eclipse, head to the McDonnell Planetarium in Forest Park – they’re currently running a great sky show, “Live Sky: Eclipse.” The 40-minute presentation tosses around words like “analemma,” “ecliptic, “apogee” and “perigee” along with history going back to

So if you’re not in St. Louis, will you miss

the show? The path of totality actually crosses the U.S. from Oregon to South Carolina, but everyone (weather permitting) in the country will be able to see a partial eclipse. According to Lindsay Thomas at Science Museum Oklahoma, “Oklahoma City will experience approximately 87 percent obscuration at approximately 1:07 p.m.” Metro residents are invited to view the eclipse from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the museum, where planetarium staff will help guests view the eclipse through special telescopes that allow users to look directly at the sun. For anyone else wanting to see the eclipse safely, glasses are available in the museum store, along with the book Get Eclipsed: A Complete Guide to the American Eclipse.

DON’T RAIN ON MY PARADE What happens if it’s cloudy on Aug. 21? There’ll be a lot of disappointed people. I suggest you have a back-up plan: Stock up on Moon Pies, rent Under the Tuscan Sun and listen to R.E.M.’s “Man on the Moon.” Be patient; you’ll have another opportunity in 2024.

FYI To make a simple device for safe viewing of the eclipse,

check out



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events Stop and Look


History and imagination alike fill “Ray Harryhausen – Mythical Menagerie,” a spectacular exhibition honoring the champion of stop-motion animation that opens July 29 at Science Museum Oklahoma. Calling Harryhausen “the forerunner of movie special effects,” SMO’s Scott Henderson says, “This exhibition offers a rare and special opportunity to see original models and art that make up a huge part of cinematic history.” Included in the nearly 150 artifacts on display at SMO will be the original armatures of the cyclops from The 7th Voyage of Sinbad, skeleton warriors and the Hydra from Jason and the Argonauts, and Medusa, the Kraken, Bubo the Owl and Pegasus from Clash of the Titans. Come take a closer look.




Western Wind-Down July 6-27, National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum Busy week, partner? Take a load off and give yourself a good time at the Museum’s new Saloon Series – each week offers a chance to relax and soak up the atmosphere of the Silver Dollar Saloon, while enjoying live folk or bluegrass music and a guided tour of some exceptional whiskies from across the country and around the world. Yee-ha.

Garth Brooks

Back in the Saddle July 14-15, Chesapeake Arena

Sir Paul McCartney

From Sir, With Love July 17, Chesapeake Arena

A true legend who’s been an indelible force in music for more than half a century and half of the greatest songwriting duo in rock and pop history – honestly, there’s no shortage of lavish descriptors, but really no need for them: he is Sir Paul McCartney, and he’s coming to OKC for the first time in 15 years to share magic in his One on One tour. 82


Come Together July 29, The Jones Assembly A new venue is ready to take its place among the upper echelon of OKC’s music scene: The Jones Assembly is 20,000 square feet of music, food, cocktails and entertainment, and its performance space is about to be christened with an all-ages show from multiplatinum ’90s bands The Wallflowers and Better Than Ezra. On with the show.


Not Madonna, not Michael, not even Elvis – according to the RIAA, the best-selling musical artist in the U.S. is Garth. It’s not his first rodeo (or even his first time singing “Rodeo”), but OKC has clearly missed having him around: For his first show in 20 years, Garth Brooks sold so many tickets so fast that one show became four. Don’t miss this opportunity before he rides off into the sunset.

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and Sewing Hope, about Sister Rosemary’s school for young African girls. Both films won prizes at Oklahoma City’s deadCenter Film Festival and several other festivals around the country. As importantly, the projects solidified the mission that would guide Lampstand’s business to this day. with Lance McDaniel “We believe that stories can change the world,” Watson says. “Stories can empower people and move them to action. We take that Derek Watson same approach to all of our client work, whether it’s a two-minute promotional video or Derek Watson’s documentary light a feature-length documentary.” Lampstand Media now employs 10 full-time staff members DER EK WATSON stays pretty busy – he’s an award-winning in their office on historic Film Row in downtown OKC. They filmmaker, small business owner, devoted husband and father of produce promotional spots for local nonprofits like Oklahoma five children under the age of 7. Despite being born in Texas and Cleats for Kids and corporate videos for major clients like raised in Portugal, Watson is an Oklahoman, thanks to OklahoOracle, as well as the occasional dream job filming in the Sahara ma Baptist University. Desert for National Geographic. However, feature-length docu“I came to Oklahoma to attend OBU,” Watson explains. “I had mentaries remain their core focus. family living nearby. OBU had an amazing broadcast depart“We are currently finishing a film called Fighting for Freedom ment and offered me great scholarships. I never thought I would about a Mixed Martial Arts star who put his fighting career on settle here, but I have absolutely fallen in love with Oklahoma hold to help free pygmy slaves in the Democratic Republic of and would never want to leave.” the Congo,” Watson explains. “And we just finished a film called OETA was the first to notice Watson’s talent, offering him a Coaching Change about the first female job in the documentary department straight basketball coach in Iraq.” out of college. While there, he worked as a “I loved documentaries At this point, it’s pretty clear that all of Derphotojournalist on the series “Stateline,” growing up, especially ek Watson’s projects are making a difference produced the State of Creativity series in in the world. But his most recent release is the conjunction with Creative Oklahoma and National Geographic. film dearest to his heart: The film, Journey to won an Emmy for producing a series of short I always dreamed of Honor, is about the organization Oklahoma films about Oklahoma’s centennial. being someone who Honor Flights, which flies WWII veterans The experience at OETA inspired Watson travelled the world with to Washington, D.C., to see the memorials to start his own company. He loved telling Oklahoma stories, but wanted to expand his a camera, telling stories dedicated to their service and sacrifice. “The most incredible moment for me was storytelling across the globe. So he started that made a difference.” getting off the plane in Baltimore,” Watson Lampstand Media in the spare bedroom of DER EK WATSON admits. “I was following the group of veterans his house, and started spreading the word. with a camera as they deplaned and entered “Our very first project was going to norththe airport. Hundreds of people were standing and cheering for ern Uganda to interview Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe about her these heroes who changed the course of history and ensured our school for girls, St. Monica’s Tailoring School,” Watson rememfreedom. To be able to witness that outpouring of support in a bers. “Reggie Whitten took a group of athletes over through time when we are so divided as a nation – it was so great to see Pros for Africa, including OU and NFL greats Adrian Peterson people come together and focus on what’s important. and Roy Williams. Dick Greenly came along with a team from “Storytelling is a fundamental human experience,” Watson Water4 to help the community install water wells.” says. “We all want to have heroes. We all want to be a part of This first assignment resulted in two award-winning docsomething greater than ourselves. I just try to focus on those umentary films: This is Normal, about Water4’s mission of core elements and let the story come out.” helping communities build and maintain their own water wells,




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Custom computer couture comes to Oklahoma Contemporary

SU R E , T HE A PPL E WATCH IS COOL and all, but for wearable technology that’s a little more eye-catchingly artistic, look to Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center this month, as it hosts a fashion exhibition of computerized creations – presenting CODED_COUTURE. A dress that acts as a lie detector, a cape whose feathers flutter with the wearer’s increased heartrate, a miniskirt that lights up with a scrolling display of tweets … the creations in this show aren’t practical everyday wear, but that’s hardly the point; it’s more

ON THE RADAR JUL 18 HER | ART A fashion show featuring local and international designers is the highlight of this luminous evening sharing art from female creators and showcasing the Institute for the Economic Empowerment of Women. 21c Museum Hotel, 900 W Main, OKC, 943.4474, JUL 29 DEALING FOR DREAMS Make-A-Wish Oklahoma is ready to cut patrons in on an evening of dinner, drinks, Vegas-style gaming and entertainment for the sake of fulfilling sick kids’ dreams - the deck is stacked for a good time. Cox Center, 1 Myriad Gardens, OKC, 286.4000,

GALLERIES THROUGH JUL 15 WAVES OF RICHES Printmaker Karen Kunc’s first OKC show is a grand one, filling more than 60 square feet with an installation of vibrant panels inspired by weather, time and the change they



WANT TO SEE MORE? VISIT OUR ONLINE CALENDAR AT 405MAGAZINE.COM accompany. Artspace at Untitled, 1 NE 3rd, OKC, 815.9995,

MUSIC JUL 3 RED, WHITE AND BOOM! The OKC Philharmonic fires up an annual family favorite with a free concert of patriotic orchestral classics, culminating in a big-time pyrotechnic show. State Fairgounds, 333 Gordon Cooper, OKC, 842.5387, JUL 1-29 FRONTIER CITY SHOWS A trip to the amusement park becomes even more tempting with guest stars like these: Chris Janson Jul 1, the Charlie Daniels Band Jul 8, Rick Springfield (woooo!) Jul 15, Randy Houser Jul 22 and Grand Funk Railroad Jul 29. Frontier City, 11501 N I-35 Service, OKC, 478.2140, JUL 2-30 TWILIGHT CONCERT SERIES Arts Council OKC presents free open-air performances to end listeners’ weeks, well, on a high note: the Allie Lauren Project Jul 2, Dylan & Stephen Salewon Jul 9, Original Flow w/ Adam & Jabee Jul 16, On a Whim

Jul 23 and The Lunar Laugh Jul 30. Myriad Gardens, 301 W Reno, OKC, 270.4848, JUL 9-23 SUMMER BREEZE Head outside for a free helping of music, courtesy of the Norman Depot: the estrogenous harmonies of The Crane Wives Jul 9 and Seattle folksters The Cave Singers Jul 23. Lions Park, 450 S Flood, Norman, 307.9320,

SPORTS JUL 8-22 ENERGY FC Get charged up! OKC’s soccer squadron returns to Taft to take on their cross-state rivals the Tulsa Roughnecks Jul 8 and the Colorado Switchbacks Jul 22. Taft Stadium, 2501 N May, OKC, 235.5425, JUL 8 NORMAN CONQUEST The heat is on during this 22nd annual bicycle tour, but riders can choose their challenge level from a 10-mile town tour to something much more grueling - all to benefit kids with developmental disabilities. J.D. McCarty Center, 2002 E

Robinson, Norman, normanconquest.

THEATER THROUGH JUL 2 HMS PINAFORE Summer is a perfect time to join Cimarron Opera in revisiting the classics via Gilbert & Sullivan’s comic masterpiece. It’s about duty. Nancy O’Brien Center, 1801 Stubbeman, Norman, 364.8962, JUL 16 CAPITOL STEPS Political satire isn’t hard to find in 2017, but the Steps have been doing their thing for more than three decades, so laughs are in store during “What to Expect When You’re Electing.” OCCC Theater, 7777 S May, OKC JUL 13-23 OR, Aphra Behn was a 17th-century spy and one of the first Englishwomen to ennr a living as an author - Oklahoma Shakespeare in the Park tells a hectic, hilarious story of the creation of her breakout play. Myriad Gardens, 301 W Reno, OKC, 235.3700,



a showcase of ideas and possibilities. The elements in this exhibition – which include prototype garments as well as drawings, sketchbooks and video projections - could lead to something that might be found in your closet someday, or they may instead serve as inspiration to ponder how fashion and technology intersect, especially how computer enhancements can allow for vastly increased interactivity and agency for users, leading to greater personalization and expression of identity. The exhibition also allows visitors to engage in the design process, using technology in conjunction with their own input to develop new items of clothing. Oklahoma Contemporary will include a full schedule of programming for both adults and children, based on themes of design innovation and personal expression through fashion. Other planned events include a lecture on “smart fabrics,” and a fashion show featuring local designers. Art and science combined, driven by human creativity but reliant on innovative technology – it could give you a new passion for f4sh10n. Visit for all the details. - STEVE GILL


“Million Dollar Quartet”

Summer of Stories


Lyric makes musical magic

A N A L L - STA R GROU P PORT R A I T inspired by a fabulous true story, a collection of highlights from fairy tales and lore, a grand romance that features the best side of America – there’s a lot to love at the Civic Center this month, thanks to the summer season of musicals supplied by Lyric Theatre. SOLID GOLD SOUND It was a magical moment: On Dec. 4, 1956, four of the biggest stars in the early days of rock and roll got together to jam in Sun Records. That brief commingling was the inspiration for this raucous musical combining the greatest hits of Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and Elvis Presley, as Lyric rocks along with the “Million Dollar Quartet” (through July 1). The show is Lyric’s first collaboration with Austin’s ZACH Theatre, and directed by ZACH’s Dave Steakley. DREAM WEAVERS A young girl’s “When You Wish” imagination is the key to connecting the worlds of Ariel, Mulan, Mowgli, Rapunzel and more in Disney’s “When You Wish” (July 11-15), a new stage adventure powered by the award-winning and deeply cherished songs from Disney’s decades-deep musical library. With Lyric’s Michael Baron directing, it will be thoroughly magical. TRUE ROMANCE The classics never go out of style, but sometimes a re-envisioning can showcase them in a new light, as with star-crossed lovers Romeo and Ju-er, Tony and Maria, in the passionate “West Side Story” (July 25-29), a beloved musical that also reminds us America is a country of immigrants. Guest directed by Matthew Gardiner, with plenty of finger snaps. Getting swept away by any of these doses of story and song is simple: for tickets and other relevant info, visit or call 524.9312 … and enjoy the magic. - STEVE GILL




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ON THE (VERY) BIG SCREEN Past pleasures of the drive-in theater W HIL E NOSTA L GI A isn’t the most reliable witness, the long summer days of youth seem endless now – often filled with golden sunshine, walking barefoot in fresh-cut grass and enjoying time away from school. It meant an afternoon dip in the pool with friends at Wedgewood or Springlake, perhaps a jaunt over to the Oklahoma City Zoo and an evening trip to the local drive-in theater. And what a choice of drive-ins we had: Cinema 70, Twi-Light Gardens and the Skyview, to name a few. The drive-in theater dates all the way back to 1933, but the real craze began in the mid-1950s, when nearly 5,000 drive-ins dotted the mid-century landscape of America. Oklahoma had its share, as well, with more than 100 theaters scattered across the state. “As a young child, my family went to several,” says Oklahoma City resident Tammy McKee. “We loved Twi-Light Gardens, the Beacon at Guthrie and Lakeaire over by Lake Overholser. I think the Beacon was probably my favorite, but I really liked all of them. It was just such a simpler time back then.” There was something for everyone at the drive-in. Kids could play on the swing sets, families could enjoy the smorgasbord of treats at the concession stand and teenagers could spend an evening steaming up the windows. But a turning point came with the implementation of the Uniform Time Act of 1966. That meant Daylight Saving Time, and with the summer sun still up well into the evening, movie start times became later. “I was in school in the ’70s, and drive-ins were still popular then,” McKee says. “I remember going on a blind double-date once when we saw Invasion of the Body Snatchers. And another time I went with a group of friends to see Carrie. One of the things I remember is people trying to sneak in via the trunk or under covers in the back of a truck. I was never brave enough to do that; I always figured I’d get caught.” By the early ’70s, Twi-Light Gardens and Cinema 70 dimmed their lights. The Northwest Hi-Way, located near Northwest Highway and Independence, held on until 1982. Today only a handful of Oklahoma drive-ins still exist, including Guthrie’s Beacon Theater and Oklahoma City’s Winchester on South Western. “I still remember the build-up of excitement when we put the speaker on the window, knowing the film was getting ready to start,” McKee smiles. “Drive-ins really started my love affair with movies. Unfortunately, today’s generation doesn’t know that much about drive-ins, except in the history books. Looking back, I wouldn’t trade those summer nights for anything.”





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Profile for 405 Magazine

405 Magazine July 2017  

405 Magazine is the definitive city and lifestyle magazine of central Oklahoma, featuring people, places, events, dining and culture.

405 Magazine July 2017  

405 Magazine is the definitive city and lifestyle magazine of central Oklahoma, featuring people, places, events, dining and culture.

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