Friday, March 25: After picking up Louise at the zoo, we drive to Bricktown, an area east of the downtown business district of Oklahoma City that served as the city’s first warehouse and distribution district. It was founded on the heels of the Land Run of 1889 and it served as the central hub of the state and the country.
Up until the 1950s, it housed furniture and hardware stores, a biscuit company, cotton producers, wholesale grocers, a dairy, and even a school. After the area declined in the 1960s and 70s, residents began to move out of the city and buildings were torn down until the area was almost vacant.
After decades of decline, investors and other forward-thinkers started to buy and renovate buildings and recruited retail, restaurants, and attractions.
Beginning in 1993, Bricktown added a baseball stadium, a water canal with water taxis, river improvements, and a nearby sports and concert arena.
Now a thriving urban entertainment district, Bricktown is home to more than 45 restaurants, many bars, clubs, and retail shops, as well as family friendly attractions, museums and galleries (Welcome to Bricktown: History).
We’re famished after our morning at the Cowboy Museum, so we stop for a late lunch at Zio’s Italian Kitchen. By now it’s nearly 2:00, and we realize we’re running out of time to do all the things we hoped to do today.
I order a plate of Veggie Primavera. 🙂
At lunch, we debate about what to do next. We’ve barely explored Bricktown, but first and foremost, we want to visit the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum. As it’s about 2:40 by the time we finish lunch, and we have a Mexican dinner at Rosie’s son’s house tonight at 6:30, our time is limited. We decide we have to forego further exploration of Bricktown so we can see the museum.
Somehow the GPS on our phones shows us the museum is right around the corner from Bricktown, but when we arrive at what is shown to be the destination, it’s not there. We ask a passerby and find it’s still a number of blocks away. We begin our urban hike, finding some interesting sights along the way.
Finally, we arrive at the museum. Stay tuned for an emotional experience at this museum, marking the April 19, 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah building by Timothy McVeigh.