Friday, May 21, 2010

Show Us Your Life Friday - Show Us Your Hometown....Tulsa, Oklahoma

I live in a small town now and it's a suburb of my hometown Tulsa, Oklahoma.  Tulsa is one of the prettiest cities around.  People that have never been to Oklahoma think it's going to be all flat plains and are usually surprised to see tons of green trees and hills.  I grew up in those hills in South Tulsa.  It was an ideallic childhood and the perfect place to live.

Tulsa just built a brand new baseball park for our minor league team the Tulsa Drillers.  It's right in the middle of downtown near our new arena, the BOK Center.  My husband works in one of the skyscrapers in downtown Tulsa, which means he gets to sit on the 28th floor and watch the daytime baseball games.  Lucky guy!!!
Great view of downtown Tulsa from the ballfield

BOK Center - the spot for all the great concerts...we recently saw the Black-Eyed Peas and Ludacris there.  It was the best concert ever!

Tulsa also has some great neighborhoods.  The older neighborhoods have so much charm and character.  This house is in the Brookside area.

This house below is in an area called golf ball hill. It's called that because on top of the hill there is a huge white water tower that looks exactly like a golf ball.  The area is so hilly that I was terrified to drive my Jeep I had as a teenager there.  It was a standard and I was scared I would roll down the hill.  I made my friend Kevin drive all the time.  I was such a chicken!!!
 It's about two miles from Oral Roberts University and where a lot of the top administrators of ORU lived when I was a kid.  The houses are built among the trees and some would be considered modern architecture, some very similar to the architecture of Oral Roberts. 

This house is in Maple Ridge, an area with more traditional houses.  It's a gorgeous area and people work very hard to keep it that way.  Many of the Designer Showcase homes are in this neighborhood.
We have a huge 60 or 70 foot Golden Driller statue at Expo Square, one of the spots where tons of conventions and craft fairs, also home and garden shows are held.  This area is known as the Fairgrounds area.  You do not want to try to drive around this area during State Fair time.  It's a busy, busy place!
Since Oklahoma is an oil state, I think we are the only place with a huge oilman.  They even dress him up sometimes.  I think a local radio station even put one of their t-shirts on him last year. HA! 

I actually grew up very near Oral Roberts University, the private Christian college that the Roberts family built.  Twenty years ago, when I was in high school, it was a very successful college.  They even had the City of Faith hospital across the street from the college.  They had a medical school and it was considered one of the top colleges in the nation.  They closed the hospital in the early 90's and it's now an office building.  The family has recently come under scrutiny for some financial dealings and the owner of Hobby Lobby donated close to 100 million dollars to save the college.  I think he is now the President of the University. 
When I was a kid, the Roberts were a family that drew a lot of curiosity.  They had a family compound of houses near the university and we would drive by as teenagers, trying to see where they lived.  It would have been very sad to see this college close, since it is such a large part of Tulsa history.

The praying hands are at the entrance to Oral Roberts University. People from all over the world come to take pictures in front of this landmark.

One of the most beautiful places in Tulsa is Southern Hills Country Club.  It's where the PGA Golf Championships have been held and is the club with the most elite membership in Tulsa.  This is "old money" Tulsa, as people in town would say.  A lot of oil families belong to this private country club.  Tulsa is full of multi-generational families that made their fortunes in the oil business.

I was on my high school golf team and would volunteer every year at the Fore Tulsa golf tournament at Southern Hills.  I was the name placket carrier and loved every second of it.  First of all, because I was able to walk a historic golf course, and second, because I was able to meet tons of famous golfers.  That was heaven to me!!!  (This is BT in Before Tiger time)  This is a very old money type of golf course.  I can only imagine what the older male members think when people yell after Tiger tees off,
"It's in the hole!" 
It makes me cringe.  I can't imagine what the 80 and 90 year olds think!!! HA!

And, for the record, I'm completely ashamed of Tiger Woods and not a fan anymore.  He makes me sick. (Just had to put that disclaimer in.)

The best place to walk around and window shop in Tulsa is Utica Square, an outdoor shopping center with the best stores, Banana Republic, Saks Fifth Avenue, Coach, Miss Jacksons and restaurants with outdoor seating when the weather is nice. 

Utica Square is also one of the premier places to live in Tulsa.  Many, many mansions were built in this area.  Roy Clark has a mansion just a few miles from the shopping center. 

This is a new building in the Utica Square area.  I think it's luxury apartments and an office building.  It's really pretty in person.

The only downfall of growing up in Tulsa, Oklahoma is tornado season.  This is a picture of what happens when a tornado (this one from 3 weeks ago) hits a convenience store.  Scary stuff.
I have never personally been in an actual tornado (I'm knocking on wood right now).


Angela said...

I lived in Tulsa for 6 years in the 90's and dearly miss it. It was great to see these pictures!

Beth Ann said...

I love Tulsa! I grew up about an hour and a half away from it and have family that lives there, so we spent a lot of time there. Now, I work for the company that the new baseball field is named after. And Utica Square is one of my favorite places to go when I'm in town!

Kim said...

I am from the Tulsa area too! I saw your blog on Kelly's blog. Good to see a fellow Okie. Your post is so right...I LOVE Oklahoma! Oh and I SO didn't know that about Roy Clark owning a house in! I think! : )

Josh and Maggie Seymour said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog recently! I loved reading your post about Tulsa and seeing the pictures! I love Tulsa and miss living there!