NORMAN — Earlier this week, I spent a really long day traveling in Eastern Oklahoma to promote upcoming events throughout the Central Oklahoma region — the 12 counties surrounding our state’s capital city — with a contingent of local colleagues.
We stopped in Muskogee first, after meeting with KTFX, Okie Country radio, and the Muskogee Phoenix. From there, we ventured to McAlester and made stops at the McAlester Capital News and a group of radio stations: KMCO, KTMC, KNED and KTMC.
Even though I have lived in Oklahoma for more than a decade, it was my first trip to Krebs for Italian food at Pete’s Place. (For the record, I am just as delighted with Norman’s Italian eateries like Victoria’s, Othello’s, Gaberino’s, etc.)
We made stops at the newspapers in Sallisaw (the Sequoyah County Times) and Henryetta Free-Lance to complete the day.
The toughest challenge in the day was trying to mention every thing we have coming up in the next few months in the short amount of time that I had because there are just so many things to do.
First, there is the Medieval Fair that attracts more attendees than any other festival, plus the 30th year of Jazz in June. Then there is the return of the two-day May Fair and the sixth edition of the free three-day Norman Music Festival.
Add in the annual ’89ers Day Parade and the Midsummer Night’s Fair and my time was coming to a close before I could quickly mention free admission to the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art, the fabulous bug exhibit at the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History plus the National Weather Center and family fun at Andy Alligator’s Fun Park and Water Park and Hey Day.
It is almost an embarrassment of riches to have so much to discuss over such a short period of time. However, it is also indicative of how tourism can drive local economy.
People who come from outside Norman to attend these events and spend money in our city bring in external dollars. The Norman CVB is doing our part to get out the message far and wide to bring them to our events and strengthen our local economy.
Stefanie Brickman, CTA, is the communications manager of the Norman Convention and Visitors Bureau.