City Breaks Ground on New Convention Center

Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt and other civic leaders broke ground on the new MAPS 3 Convention Center June 15 as part of the Core to Shore renaissance in downtown Oklahoma City.

The convention center will draw events that bring attendees from around the region and world, boosting Oklahoma City’s economy while also serving as an ideal host for local events. Its position south of the central business district in the Core to Shore area, along with other MAPS 3 investments, is anticipated to spark the same kind of transformative development.

The 200,000-square-foot exhibit hall will dominate the ground floor, and rooms can be configured to provide up to 27 individual meeting spaces. A grand ballroom will also be included

The angular façade has towering glass walls to make maximum use of natural light and takes its design cues from Oklahoma City’s sky, landscape and architectural character. A skywalk will connect the building to the future Omni hotel, which is being developed to complement and support the convention center and is also expected to be finished in 2020.

Wind Company Moves into OKC

Enel Green Power North America leased 1,700 square feet of office space in downtown Oklahoma City’s Robinson Renaissance Building, making its mark as the state’s largest wind farm operator.

A subsidiary of Enel Group based in Rome, Enel Green Power North America currently has 10 wind farms in Oklahoma and operates in 30 countries. It first moved into Oklahoma by opening its Chisholm View wind farm in 2012.

Oklahoma City Named a Tree City USA

For the third year in a row, Oklahoma City has been designated as a Tree City USA by the Arbor Day Foundation. The honor goes to communities that meet several standards for planting trees and spend at least $2 per capita on a community forestry program.

More than 3,400 communities have made the commitment to becoming a Tree City USA. Oklahoma City achieved Tree City USA status by meeting four core standards of sound urban forestry management: maintaining a tree board or department, having a community tree ordinance, spending at least $2 per capita on urban forestry and celebrating Arbor Day.

Money Magazine Lists OKC on ‘Best Places to Go’ List

MONEY Magazine included Oklahoma City on its list of destinations in the U.S. for “Best Places to Go in 2018” based on must-do experiences and amenities, cost, year-over-year trends and customer satisfaction. 

The article touted the Oklahoma City Museum of Art, the OKC Thunder games at the Chesapeake Energy Arena, the Bricktown District, Stockyards City and the city’s Adventure District as to why Oklahoma City is no longer “just a cow town.”

Lake Draper Trail Set to Open by End of Year

As part of the MAPS 3 initiative, Oklahoma City is becoming more pedestrian- and healthy lifestyle-focused with investments of more than $57 million into sidewalks and trails in the city.

The Lake Draper Trail is set to be completed this year, joining the West River Trail that was completed in 2015 and the Will Rogers Trail, completed in 2017. New sidewalks in areas throughout the city are being built on an ongoing basis to provide more access to walkers and to improve the quality of life for Oklahoma City residents. 

Read the West Book Club Returns to National Cowboy Museum

The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum announces the return of its crowd-pleasing Read the West Book Club Series, which will take place Aug. 2, and Aug. 30 from 6-7:15 p.m. The third rendition of this ever-popular series features prominent titles such as Matthew P. Mayo’s “Stranded: A Story of Frontier Survival,” Louise Erdrich’s “LaRose” and Christine Baker Kline’s “Orphan Train.”

“Reading and talking about books brings communities together and encourages discussions and companionship,” says Chief Public Experience Officer Inez Wolins. “A good book opens a world of doors and introduces new perspectives. These inspiring and award-winning books are sure to leave a lasting impression on those who participate and we encourage everyone to join us!”

Cost for the series is $5 at the door, or free to Museum members, and includes a facilitator, refreshments and Museum admission. The publications are available in The Museum Store (15 percent discount for Museum members). Register online by July 2 at NationalCowboyMuseum.org/Book-Club.

Paseo Calls for Entries for SPACE at Skirvin

The Paseo Arts Association announces a call for entries for SPACE, the Skirvin Paseo Artist Creativity Exposition, an urban artist-in-residency program in which Oklahoma artists who are members of the Paseo Arts Association can apply for a yearlong on-site residency in Oklahoma City’s premier downtown landmark hotel, the Skirvin Hilton.

The Skirvin’s Artist-in-Residency program offers a working art studio and gallery that is open to the public during established business hours as well as $1,000-per-month stipend, free parking and a meal allowance to the selected artist each year.

“This is a fabulous opportunity for an emerging visual artist,” says Amanda Bleakley, executive director of the Paseo Arts Association. “The Skirvin Hilton Hotel is a beautiful historic hotel in the heart of downtown Oklahoma City with considerable pedestrian traffic and a continuous flow of hotel patrons.”

The Skirvin Hilton Hotel has partnered with the Paseo Arts Association to market the residency to its membership and to assist in the selection of the artists who will participate in the program. 

The 2019 residency begins Oct. 1 and ends the last week of September 2019. For more information, visit ThePaseo.org or call 405.525.2688.