TulsaPeople Q&A: Bill John Baker

Principal Chief, Cherokee Nation



Principal Chief Baker, in his Tahlequah office, is a native of Tahlequah and is the fourth generation of his family to reside in Cherokee County.

(page 1 of 2)

To say that last year’s election for principal chief of the Cherokee Nation was contentious is to dramatically understate it.

What began as one election in late June became two when the original results were invalidated amid challenges, appeals and recount requests. A second vote was held in late September. When the smoke cleared, longtime Tribal Council member Bill John Baker defeated incumbent Chad Smith to take leadership of the more than 300,000 Cherokee citizens who make up the largest federally recognized tribe in the United States.

With six children and nine grandchildren, Baker, 60, now finds himself at the helm of a jurisdiction encompassing all or part of 14 counties across northeastern Oklahoma, including the northern parts of Tulsa County, as well as Washington, Rogers, Craig, Nowata, Muskogee and eight others.

The tribe’s economic engine, Cherokee Nation Businesses, includes eight casinos, as well as interests in hospitality, personnel services, telecommunications, distribution, manufacturing and environmental services. All total, the Cherokee Nation’s annual economic impact in Oklahoma and surrounding areas is estimated to be more than $1.3 billion.

Baker took office in October and was formally inaugurated in early November.

You are a native of Tahlequah and represent the fourth generation of your family in Cherokee County. What is your favorite childhood memory?

Growing up as the youngest son of schoolteacher parents could not have been any more “Ozzie and Harriet.” It was absolutely a joy. I have memories of building tree houses and turkeys roosting in the next tree. Of being able to ride a horse out to the river. We were so fortunate. We had college football, college basketball and high school sports, and we thought it was the center of the universe.

You earned an education degree from Northeastern State University but bought a furniture business just out of college. Are there lessons you learned as a businessman that have stayed with you?

Absolutely. Being a businessman is really about finding opportunities to serve people. And every problem that comes to you is really just an opportunity to fix something or to create another product.

To be in business in a small town, if you don’t treat people right, you don’t stay in business. The pool of customers is just too small to not solve problems.

I think over 40 years — I’ve been in many businesses, like retail, construction, motel, developed condos — all of those things have given me experiences that are invaluable. Every one of them is something I can draw on as chief of the Cherokee Nation.

You are a past PTA president, a former youth sports coach, a charter member of the Tahlequah Rotary Club and past president of the Tahlequah Area Chamber of Commerce. What drove that level of community involvement?

My grandmother taught me at an early age that you have to give back, to volunteer. I think that every parent ought to coach a little league soccer team at least once. If you’re going to complain about the schools, or complain about education, then you need to get in there, roll up your sleeves and try to make a difference.

What was your strength as a coach?

When I coached soccer, I had never played soccer a day in my life and I knew nothing about it. But I knew that I could hire one of the college soccer players who needed extra money to be my assistant. By hiring his talents, it made my whole team much better. He knew what to teach them, and I learned from him.

I feel the same way about the tribe. I hire talent with skills that I don’t have.

How important is family?

Very. I’m blessed that my mother is still living and extremely active. We stick together. We come from a family that believes in one another and cares for each other. At the end of the day, family is always there.

What prompted you to run for chief?

I thought we could better serve our people, and I was somewhat frustrated by the constant passing up of good ideas that would really help people in need. When we got to a point where we were just all business and not thinking about how we can serve our people, I got frustrated.

So you believe a business approach to political office can help, but within limits?

No, business works. But it would be like me running my furniture store and not taking care of my kids. The business is just a means to an end.

As a private businessperson, the money is not what it’s about. It’s about being able to raise your family, to make them comfortable, to have the means to see that they get college educations, to see that they have the opportunities.

The tribe is no different. It’s not about the bottom line. But we have to have business to be able to afford to do the things that we should for our people. So there has to be a balance.

Were there those close to you who encouraged your run?

Many of my supporters on the council, and many community people, asked me to run for chief — eight years ago, four years ago. I didn’t think the timing was right.

I really enjoyed being on the Tribal Council, and my heart is still over there, where you have time to deal with individuals and take care of them one at a time and you can follow up on their problems.

As long as I was over there, and we could identify a problem, and we could find a permanent fix for not only that person but everybody else who was similarly situated, I was happy.

And then, like I said, I got unhappy in the past four years because I felt we were not given the resources that were really needed. So a lot of people asked me to run. And a lot of people wished I hadn’t.

The election was drawn out and fairly divisive. Did that take a personal toll?

No, it really didn’t. I truly enjoy campaigning. I enjoy getting out and meeting people and listening to their hopes and dreams and fears. I was blessed that every night, the second I put my head on my pillow, I went to sleep. And I slept extremely well the entire campaign. I had so many volunteers who would lift me up every day and so many people praying for me.

Is spirituality a big part of your life?

I think faith is everything. I don’t think I have ever accomplished anything but by the grace.

Are your beliefs going to be obvious during your tenure as chief?

I ask for guidance every morning. I think it will define my tenure.

In what way?

Every decision I make, I’m going to look at how is this going to best serve the Cherokee people, and I’m going to ask God for guidance on how to do that.

Post-election, how do you plan to reunify the tribe?

We’ve started that process already. Even at the inauguration, we were able to bring together what used to be the Cherokee adult choir but was split several years ago between the Methodists and Baptists.

And it was the first time in history that we’ve been able to get the chief of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, the chief of the Cherokee Nation and the chief of the (United Keetoowah band of Cherokee Indians) together in a ceremony.

My whole campaign was based on the vision that, if you are Cherokee, we all came from one fire. When the Cherokee were just a very small group, all of our ancestors were literally around one fire.

Are the Cherokee people hungry for unity?

Fifty-six percent of them are. I have my detractors, but I think the majority are ready to get about the business of being nice and taking care of each other and not fussing and spending money on lawsuits.

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View map »


Website »

More information

Opening to the public on Thursday, Nov. 16, the 110th anniversary of Oklahoma statehood, “The Art of Oklahoma” celebrates the Museum’s outstanding and...

Cost: Free with admission

Where:
Oklahoma City Museum of Art
415 Couch Dr.
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Website »

More information

Brushstrokes & Imagination will be at Southern Agriculture 7836 S Olympia Ave, Tulsa, OK 74132 Dec. Sat. 9 from11am - 3pm Dec. Sun. 10 from 12pm - 4pm and the following weekend Dec. 16 from...

Cost: Free to the Public

Where:
Southern Agriculture
7836 S Olympia Ave,
Tulsa, OK  74132
View map »


Sponsor: Southern Agriculture
Telephone: 918-794-7387
Contact Name: Mandy
Website »

More information

Brushstrokes & Imagination will be at Southern Agriculture 7836 S Olympia Ave, Tulsa, OK 74132 Dec. Sat. 9 from11am - 3pm Dec. Sun. 10 from 12pm - 4pm and the following weekend Dec. 16 from...

Cost: Free to the Public

Where:
Southern Agriculture
7836 S Olympia Ave,
Tulsa, OK  74132
View map »


Sponsor: Southern Agriculture
Telephone: 918-794-7387
Contact Name: Mandy
Website »

More information

A Modern Dance inspired exercise class. Fifty minutes of fun, freedom, and flow.  Who: ALL levels Bring: movement clothes, layers, cotton socks When: Wednesdays, Nov. 29 - Dec. 20,...

Cost: $12/ class or $10 with punch card

Where:
Fly Loft studio 3
117 N Boston
Tulsa, OK  74103
View map »

More information

Join us for a spectacular evening of dazzling lights, colors, shapes, and themes. The Lantern Light festival is a six week  (Dec 1- Jan 15) celebration of Chinese culture featuring massive...

Cost: $10-$25

Where:
River West Festival Park
2100 S Jackson Ave
Tulsa, OK  74107
View map »


Telephone: (918) 596-2008
Contact Name: Ryan Howell
Website »

More information

It's that time again.....First Friday Art Walk!  Please join us in welcoming Tulsa native David Eric Morrison and his exhibit of new works entitled 'Floral Intents'....

Cost: free

Where:
mainline art bar
111 n main street
tulsa, OK  74103
View map »


Sponsor: mainline art bar
Telephone: 918-704-3330
Contact Name: katy eagleston

More information

Come give those calories one last dance!  We dance in the park behind Jenks Nutrition.  But don't worry, we'll move inside if the weather gets bad.  For $5, you get a fun...

Cost: $5.00

Where:
Jenks Nutrition
124 N 3rd St
Jenks, OK  74037
View map »

More information

These ARE the people you're looking for!  Learn to wield a blade of pure energy at our first monthly hands-on lightsaber 3-session Shii-Cho seminar, Thursdays, 6:30-8, 12/7 through 12/21....

Cost: 65.00

Where:
Southminster Presbyterian Church Community Center
3500 S Peoria
35th Place West of Peoria
Tulsa, OK  74105
View map »


Sponsor: The Order of the Illuminated Blade
Contact Name: Cath Eraine
Website »

More information

Class draws from release technique, classical modern dance, improvisation, and various somatic practices. We combine technique, interior awareness, and specific movement qualities in floor work and...

Cost: Donations. Thanks to support from Tulsa Community Foundation and donors like you

Where:
Fly Loft studio 3
117 N Boston
Tulsa, OK  74103
View map »

More information

Celebrate the holidays with making something everyone will enjoy. Garden Spirits can hang in a window, be planted in a garden or stuck in a flower pot. In this 4 week class, make 3 full-size...

Cost: $125.00

Where:
Tulsa Stained Glass
4131 S. Sheridan Rd.
Tulsa, OK  74145
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Stained Glass
Telephone: 918-664-8604
Contact Name: Richard Bohm
Website »

More information

Celebrate the holidays with making something everyone will enjoy. Garden Spirits can hang in a window, be planted in a garden or stuck in a flower pot. In this 4 week class, make 3 full-size...

Cost: $125.00

Where:
Tulsa Stained Glass
4131 S. Sheridan Rd.
Tulsa, OK  74145
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Stained Glass
Telephone: 918-664-8604
Contact Name: Richard Bohm
Website »

More information

Go ahead, run with sharp objects. TFC's special 2-week, 4-session Introduction to Fencing session is your opportunity to discover this exciting Olympic sport. This Tuesday/Thursday evening...

Cost: 65.00

Where:
Southminster Presbyterian Church Community Center
3500 S Peoria
35th Place West of Peoria
Tulsa, OK  74105
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Fencing Club
Telephone: 918-928-2663
Contact Name: Kendra
Website »

More information

Monthly improvised comedy show featuring Tulsa best improvisers hosted by Blue Dome Social Club at Mainline Art & Cocktails. Must be 21+.

Cost: 0

Where:
Mainline Art & Cocktails
111 N Main Street
Tulsa, OK  74103
View map »


Contact Name: Laurel George
Website »

More information

Cost: $5-$12

Where:
Loony bin
6808 S Memorial Dr
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Cost: $10

Where:
Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame
5 S Boston Ave
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Blackbird on Pearl
1336 E 6th St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Sample Heirloom Rustic Ales nine craft beers while watching a screening of Kathryn Bigelow's 1987 horror Near Dark, which is set in our fine state.

Where:
Heirloom Rustic Ales
2113 E Admiral Blvd
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Coffee House On Cherry Street
1502 E 15th St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Mercury Lounge
1747 S Boston Ave
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
The Colony
2809 S Harvard Ave
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
River Spirit Casino - 5 O'Clock Somewhere Bar
8330 Riverside Pkwy
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Soul City
1621 E 11th St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

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This marks the first time this remarkable collection has been exhibited internationally. OKCMOA will present some of the most important works from the Victoria and Albert’s outstanding...

Cost: Free with admission

Where:
Oklahoma City Museum of Art
415 Couch Dr.
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Website »

More information

Opening to the public on Thursday, Nov. 16, the 110th anniversary of Oklahoma statehood, “The Art of Oklahoma” celebrates the Museum’s outstanding and...

Cost: Free with admission

Where:
Oklahoma City Museum of Art
415 Couch Dr.
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Website »

More information

This marks the first time this remarkable collection has been exhibited internationally. OKCMOA will present some of the most important works from the Victoria and Albert’s outstanding...

Cost: Free with admission

Where:
Oklahoma City Museum of Art
415 Couch Dr.
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Website »

More information

Brushstrokes & Imagination will be at Southern Agriculture 7836 S Olympia Ave, Tulsa, OK 74132 Dec. Sat. 9 from11am - 3pm Dec. Sun. 10 from 12pm - 4pm and the following weekend Dec. 16 from...

Cost: Free to the Public

Where:
Southern Agriculture
7836 S Olympia Ave,
Tulsa, OK  74132
View map »


Sponsor: Southern Agriculture
Telephone: 918-794-7387
Contact Name: Mandy
Website »

More information

Brushstrokes & Imagination will be at Southern Agriculture 7836 S Olympia Ave, Tulsa, OK 74132 Dec. Sat. 9 from11am - 3pm Dec. Sun. 10 from 12pm - 4pm and the following weekend Dec. 16 from...

Cost: Free to the Public

Where:
Southern Agriculture
7836 S Olympia Ave,
Tulsa, OK  74132
View map »


Sponsor: Southern Agriculture
Telephone: 918-794-7387
Contact Name: Mandy
Website »

More information

Join us for a spectacular evening of dazzling lights, colors, shapes, and themes. The Lantern Light festival is a six week  (Dec 1- Jan 15) celebration of Chinese culture featuring massive...

Cost: $10-$25

Where:
River West Festival Park
2100 S Jackson Ave
Tulsa, OK  74107
View map »


Telephone: (918) 596-2008
Contact Name: Ryan Howell
Website »

More information

Get in the spirit of the season with the warm glow of luminaries in the Garden. A different local artist will facilitate a drop-in holiday craft for all ages each week. Enjoy holiday music while...

Cost: FREE for Garden members; $8 for ages 13+; $4 for ages 3–12; 2 & under are free.

Where:
Tulsa Botanic Garden
3900 Tulsa Botanic Drive
Tulsa, OK  74127
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Botanic Garden
Telephone: 918-289-0330
Website »

More information

Looking to live among all that's happening in our great downtown Tulsa?! Central Park is the place! It's the only high-rise condominiums inside the IDL where you can OWN your own home!...

Cost: Free

Where:
Central Park Condominiums
410 W 7th Street
Tulsa, OK  74119
View map »


Sponsor: Genni Davis
Telephone: 918-636-5436
Contact Name: Genni Davis
Website »

More information

It's that time again.....First Friday Art Walk!  Please join us in welcoming Tulsa native David Eric Morrison and his exhibit of new works entitled 'Floral Intents'....

Cost: free

Where:
mainline art bar
111 n main street
tulsa, OK  74103
View map »


Sponsor: mainline art bar
Telephone: 918-704-3330
Contact Name: katy eagleston

More information

These ARE the people you're looking for!  Learn to wield a blade of pure energy at our first monthly hands-on lightsaber 3-session Shii-Cho seminar, Thursdays, 6:30-8, 12/7 through 12/21....

Cost: 65.00

Where:
Southminster Presbyterian Church Community Center
3500 S Peoria
35th Place West of Peoria
Tulsa, OK  74105
View map »


Sponsor: The Order of the Illuminated Blade
Contact Name: Cath Eraine
Website »

More information

Celebrate the holidays with making something everyone will enjoy. Garden Spirits can hang in a window, be planted in a garden or stuck in a flower pot. In this 4 week class, make 3 full-size...

Cost: $125.00

Where:
Tulsa Stained Glass
4131 S. Sheridan Rd.
Tulsa, OK  74145
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Stained Glass
Telephone: 918-664-8604
Contact Name: Richard Bohm
Website »

More information

Go ahead, run with sharp objects. TFC's special 2-week, 4-session Introduction to Fencing session is your opportunity to discover this exciting Olympic sport. This Tuesday/Thursday evening...

Cost: 65.00

Where:
Southminster Presbyterian Church Community Center
3500 S Peoria
35th Place West of Peoria
Tulsa, OK  74105
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Fencing Club
Telephone: 918-928-2663
Contact Name: Kendra
Website »

More information

Celebrate the holidays with making something everyone will enjoy. Garden Spirits can hang in a window, be planted in a garden or stuck in a flower pot. In this 4 week class, make 3 full-size...

Cost: $125.00

Where:
Tulsa Stained Glass
4131 S. Sheridan Rd.
Tulsa, OK  74145
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Stained Glass
Telephone: 918-664-8604
Contact Name: Richard Bohm
Website »

More information

Tulsa's Monthly StorySlam is looking for people to come share their stories onstage in front of a live audience (21+, $5 cover). No experience necessary and we need contestant/storytellers...

Cost: 5.00

Where:
IDL Ballroom
230 E 1st St
Tulsa, OK  74103
View map »


Sponsor: OK, So StorySlam
Telephone: 918-551-7447
Contact Name: Ryan Howell
Website »

More information

Ok, So... Story Slam - Tulsa Story Telling Competition Tulsa's Monthly StorySlam is looking for people to come share their stories onstage in front of a live audience (18+, $5 Cover). No...

Cost: 5

Where:
IDL Ballroom
230 E 1st St
Tulsa, OK  74103
View map »


Sponsor: Ok So Story Slam
Telephone: 918-596-2008
Contact Name: Ryan Howell
Website »

More information

Where:
Hard Rock Casino - Riffs
777 W Cherokee St
Catoosa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Hard Rock Casino - Cabin Creek
777 W Cherokee St
Catoosa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

YBR hosts an Ugly Christmas Sweater Contest with cash prizes.

Where:
Yellow Brick Road Pub
2630 E 15th St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

True stories based on a given theme told in front of an audience. This month's theme: Courage.

Cost: $5

Where:
IDL Ballroom
230 E 1st St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
River Spirit Casino - 5 O'Clock Somewhere Bar
8330 Riverside Pkwy
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Cost: $12

Where:
The Venue Shrine
112 E 18th St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
The Hunt Club
224 N Main St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
The Max Retropub
114 S Elgin Ave
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Cost: $15-$44

Where:
Reynolds Center
3208 E 8th St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Cost: $30-$45

Where:
Cain's Ballroom
423 N Main St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Soundpony
409 N Main St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Soul City
1621 E 11th St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
The Colony
2809 S Harvard Ave
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Mercury Lounge
1747 S Boston Ave
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
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This marks the first time this remarkable collection has been exhibited internationally. OKCMOA will present some of the most important works from the Victoria and Albert’s outstanding...

Cost: Free with admission

Where:
Oklahoma City Museum of Art
415 Couch Dr.
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Website »

More information

This marks the first time this remarkable collection has been exhibited internationally. OKCMOA will present some of the most important works from the Victoria and Albert’s outstanding...

Cost: Free with admission

Where:
Oklahoma City Museum of Art
415 Couch Dr.
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Website »

More information

Opening to the public on Thursday, Nov. 16, the 110th anniversary of Oklahoma statehood, “The Art of Oklahoma” celebrates the Museum’s outstanding and...

Cost: Free with admission

Where:
Oklahoma City Museum of Art
415 Couch Dr.
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Website »

More information

Brushstrokes & Imagination will be at Southern Agriculture 7836 S Olympia Ave, Tulsa, OK 74132 Dec. Sat. 9 from11am - 3pm Dec. Sun. 10 from 12pm - 4pm and the following weekend Dec. 16 from...

Cost: Free to the Public

Where:
Southern Agriculture
7836 S Olympia Ave,
Tulsa, OK  74132
View map »


Sponsor: Southern Agriculture
Telephone: 918-794-7387
Contact Name: Mandy
Website »

More information

Brushstrokes & Imagination will be at Southern Agriculture 7836 S Olympia Ave, Tulsa, OK 74132 Dec. Sat. 9 from11am - 3pm Dec. Sun. 10 from 12pm - 4pm and the following weekend Dec. 16 from...

Cost: Free to the Public

Where:
Southern Agriculture
7836 S Olympia Ave,
Tulsa, OK  74132
View map »


Sponsor: Southern Agriculture
Telephone: 918-794-7387
Contact Name: Mandy
Website »

More information

Join us for a spectacular evening of dazzling lights, colors, shapes, and themes. The Lantern Light festival is a six week  (Dec 1- Jan 15) celebration of Chinese culture featuring massive...

Cost: $10-$25

Where:
River West Festival Park
2100 S Jackson Ave
Tulsa, OK  74107
View map »


Telephone: (918) 596-2008
Contact Name: Ryan Howell
Website »

More information

Save the date and join Girl Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma for a Community Winter Celebration. The Girl Scout community is invited to attend this annual event at McKinley Elementary on Friday, December...

Cost: FREE

Where:
McKinley Elementary
6703 East King Street
Tulsa, OK  74115
View map »


Sponsor: Girl Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma
Telephone: 1-800-707-9914
Contact Name: Sheila Harbert
Website »

More information

LIGHTS, MUSIC, DANCING, ACTION! Real Church and Fervent Fire Ministries are partnering to create and hold the second annual Living Nativity outside of Real Church. The Living Nativity event will...

Cost: Free

Where:
Real Church
315 S. Sheridan Rd.
Tulsa, OK  74112
View map »


Telephone: 888-242-5229
Website »

More information

It's that time again.....First Friday Art Walk!  Please join us in welcoming Tulsa native David Eric Morrison and his exhibit of new works entitled 'Floral Intents'....

Cost: free

Where:
mainline art bar
111 n main street
tulsa, OK  74103
View map »


Sponsor: mainline art bar
Telephone: 918-704-3330
Contact Name: katy eagleston

More information

These ARE the people you're looking for!  Learn to wield a blade of pure energy at our first monthly hands-on lightsaber 3-session Shii-Cho seminar, Thursdays, 6:30-8, 12/7 through 12/21....

Cost: 65.00

Where:
Southminster Presbyterian Church Community Center
3500 S Peoria
35th Place West of Peoria
Tulsa, OK  74105
View map »


Sponsor: The Order of the Illuminated Blade
Contact Name: Cath Eraine
Website »

More information

Celebrate the holidays with making something everyone will enjoy. Garden Spirits can hang in a window, be planted in a garden or stuck in a flower pot. In this 4 week class, make 3 full-size...

Cost: $125.00

Where:
Tulsa Stained Glass
4131 S. Sheridan Rd.
Tulsa, OK  74145
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Stained Glass
Telephone: 918-664-8604
Contact Name: Richard Bohm
Website »

More information

Celebrate the holidays with making something everyone will enjoy. Garden Spirits can hang in a window, be planted in a garden or stuck in a flower pot. In this 4 week class, make 3 full-size...

Cost: $125.00

Where:
Tulsa Stained Glass
4131 S. Sheridan Rd.
Tulsa, OK  74145
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Stained Glass
Telephone: 918-664-8604
Contact Name: Richard Bohm
Website »

More information

The Broken Arrow Community Playhouse is excited to present “The ReGifters” by Robert Lynn  December 8, 9, 10, 15, 16, 17, 2017, Friday and Saturday at 7:30 PM, Saturday and...

Cost: $13-$18

Where:
Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
1800 S. Main St.
Broken Arrow, OK  74012
View map »


Sponsor: Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
Telephone: 918-258-0077
Contact Name: Sherry Hacker
Website »

More information

Where:
River Spirit Casino - Volcano Stage
8330 Riverside Pkwy
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
River Spirit Casino - 5 O'Clock Somewhere Bar
8330 Riverside Pkwy
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Cost: $30-$219

Where:
River Spirit Casino - Paradise Cove
8330 Riverside Pkwy
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Blackbird on Pearl
1336 E 6th St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
The Hunt Club
224 N Main St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Cost: $13-$54

Where:
BOK Center
200 S Denver Ave
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
The Max Retropub
114 S Elgin Ave
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Soundpony
409 N Main St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Cost: $10

Where:
Soul City
1621 E 11th St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Soul City
1621 E 11th St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Bad Ass Renee's
6373 E 31st St
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Smitty's 118 Tavern
118 E Main St
Jenks, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Utopia Bar & Lounge
3508 S Sheridan Rd
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Hard Rock Casino - Cabin Creek
777 W Cherokee St
Catoosa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
The Run
3141 E Skelly Dr
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Stillhouse Bar & Grill
8922 S Memorial Dr
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Cost: $5

Where:
The Colony
2809 S Harvard Ave
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Hard Rock Casino - Riffs
777 W Cherokee St
Catoosa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

Where:
Crow Creek Tavern
3534 S Peoria Ave
Tulsa, OK
View map »


Website »

More information

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Come give those calories one last dance!  We dance in the park behind Jenks Nutrition.  But don't worry, we'll move inside if the weather gets bad.  For $5, you get a fun...

Cost: $5.00

Where:
Jenks Nutrition
124 N 3rd St
Jenks, OK  74037
View map »

More information

This marks the first time this remarkable collection has been exhibited internationally. OKCMOA will present some of the most important works from the Victoria and Albert’s outstanding...

Cost: Free with admission

Where:
Oklahoma City Museum of Art
415 Couch Dr.
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Website »

More information

Opening to the public on Thursday, Nov. 16, the 110th anniversary of Oklahoma statehood, “The Art of Oklahoma” celebrates the Museum’s outstanding and...

Cost: Free with admission

Where:
Oklahoma City Museum of Art
415 Couch Dr.
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Website »

More information

This marks the first time this remarkable collection has been exhibited internationally. OKCMOA will present some of the most important works from the Victoria and Albert’s outstanding...

Cost: Free with admission

Where:
Oklahoma City Museum of Art
415 Couch Dr.
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
View map »


Website »

More information

Brushstrokes & Imagination will be at Southern Agriculture 7836 S Olympia Ave, Tulsa, OK 74132 Dec. Sat. 9 from11am - 3pm Dec. Sun. 10 from 12pm - 4pm and the following weekend Dec. 16 from...

Cost: Free to the Public

Where:
Southern Agriculture
7836 S Olympia Ave,
Tulsa, OK  74132
View map »


Sponsor: Southern Agriculture
Telephone: 918-794-7387
Contact Name: Mandy
Website »

More information

Brushstrokes & Imagination will be at Southern Agriculture 7836 S Olympia Ave, Tulsa, OK 74132 Dec. Sat. 9 from11am - 3pm Dec. Sun. 10 from 12pm - 4pm and the following weekend Dec. 16 from...

Cost: Free to the Public

Where:
Southern Agriculture
7836 S Olympia Ave,
Tulsa, OK  74132
View map »


Sponsor: Southern Agriculture
Telephone: 918-794-7387
Contact Name: Mandy
Website »

More information

Enjoy making and taking home a beautiful authentic stained glass ring project in this 2 hour class. Crafting lessons, materials for one ring (4" ring and 9 glass nuggets), and use of tools are all...

Cost: $39.00

Where:
Tulsa Stained Glass
4131 S. Sheridan Rd.
Tulsa, OK  74145
View map »


Sponsor: Tulsa Stained Glass
Telephone: 918-664-8604
Contact Name: Richard Bohm
Website »

More information

The Broken Arrow Community Playhouse is excited to present “The ReGifters” by Robert Lynn  December 8, 9, 10, 15, 16, 17, 2017, Friday and Saturday at 7:30 PM, Saturday and...

Cost: $13-$18

Where:
Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
1800 S. Main St.
Broken Arrow, OK  74012
View map »


Sponsor: Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
Telephone: 918-258-0077
Contact Name: Sherry Hacker
Website »

More information

The Symphony of Northwest Arkansas (SoNA) continues its 2017-18 Season with an evening performance and a special matinee of A Very SoNA Christmas on Saturday, Dec. 16. This concert features a mix...

Cost: $30-52

Where:
Walton Arts Center, Baum Walker Hall
495 W. Dickson Street
Fayetteville, AR  72701
View map »


Telephone: 479-443-5600
Contact Name: Symphony of Northwest Arkansas
Website »

More information

Join us for a spectacular evening of dazzling lights, colors, shapes, and themes. The Lantern Light festival is a six week  (Dec 1- Jan 15) celebration of Chinese culture featuring massive...

Cost: $10-$25

Where:
River West Festival Park
2100 S Jackson Ave
Tulsa, OK  74107
View map »


Telephone: (918) 596-2008
Contact Name: Ryan Howell
Website »

More information

It's that time again.....First Friday Art Walk!  Please join us in welcoming Tulsa native David Eric Morrison and his exhibit of new works entitled 'Floral Intents'....

Cost: free

Where:
mainline art bar
111 n main street
tulsa, OK  74103
View map »


Sponsor: mainline art bar
Telephone: 918-704-3330
Contact Name: katy eagleston

More information

The Oklahoma Swing Syndicate (TOSS) hosts a Swing dance and lessons  The Oklahoma Swing Syndicate (TOSS) is the only UNESCO recognized dance organization in Oklahoma.  We are a 501c3...

Cost: $7

Where:
Community Center - South Minister Presby Church
3500 So Peoria
1/2 west of Peoria, on 35pl behind the church
Tulsa, OK  74102
View map »


Sponsor: The Ok Swing Syndicate
Telephone: 918-450-691
Contact Name: Rita Robbins
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These ARE the people you're looking for!  Learn to wield a blade of pure energy at our first monthly hands-on lightsaber 3-session Shii-Cho seminar, Thursdays, 6:30-8, 12/7 through 12/21....

Cost: 65.00

Where:
Southminster Presbyterian Church Community Center
3500 S Peoria
35th Place West of Peoria
Tulsa, OK  74105
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Sponsor: The Order of the Illuminated Blade
Contact Name: Cath Eraine
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Christmas with Brian Nhira and Friends from ’The Voice’ is an event for the entire family, that you will not want to miss on Saturday December 16th (7pm – VIP Meet and Greet...

Cost: $25 Reserved Seating // $45 VIP

Where:
TCC VanTrease PACE
10300 E 81st St
Tulsa, OK  74136
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Sponsor: Brian Nhira Music
Telephone: (918) 704-8855
Contact Name: Jasper Nhira
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Join Brian Nhira and friends from the "Voice" with his Home for Christmas Concert Saturday December 16th at 7PM Featuring: Shalyah Fearing, Caity Peters, Malik Heard & Whitney...

Cost: $25 - $45

Where:
VanTrease PACE
10300 E. 81st Street
Tulsa, OK  74133
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Celebrate the holidays with making something everyone will enjoy. Garden Spirits can hang in a window, be planted in a garden or stuck in a flower pot. In this 4 week class, make 3 full-size...

Cost: $125.00

Where:
Tulsa Stained Glass
4131 S. Sheridan Rd.
Tulsa, OK  74145
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Sponsor: Tulsa Stained Glass
Telephone: 918-664-8604
Contact Name: Richard Bohm
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Celebrate the holidays with making something everyone will enjoy. Garden Spirits can hang in a window, be planted in a garden or stuck in a flower pot. In this 4 week class, make 3 full-size...

Cost: $125.00

Where:
Tulsa Stained Glass
4131 S. Sheridan Rd.
Tulsa, OK  74145
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Sponsor: Tulsa Stained Glass
Telephone: 918-664-8604
Contact Name: Richard Bohm
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The Broken Arrow Community Playhouse is excited to present “The ReGifters” by Robert Lynn  December 8, 9, 10, 15, 16, 17, 2017, Friday and Saturday at 7:30 PM, Saturday and...

Cost: $13-$18

Where:
Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
1800 S. Main St.
Broken Arrow, OK  74012
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Sponsor: Broken Arrow Community Playhouse
Telephone: 918-258-0077
Contact Name: Sherry Hacker
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The Symphony of Northwest Arkansas (SoNA) continues its 2017-18 Season with an evening performance and a special matinee of A Very SoNA Christmas on Saturday, Dec. 16. This concert features a mix...

Cost: $30-52

Where:
Walton Arts Center, Baum Walker Hall
495 W. Dickson Street
Fayetteville, AR  72701
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Telephone: 479-443-5600
Contact Name: Symphony of Northwest Arkansas
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It's here!  It's here!  Time once again for another laugh-filled evening with Tulsa's Great Improvisational Comedy Show, "The Spontaniacs!"  A holiday special...

Cost: $8.00

Where:
pH Community House
306 S Phoenix Ave
Tulsa, OK  74127
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Sponsor: The Spontaniacs!
Telephone: 918-521-9345
Contact Name: Eric Peterson
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Where:
The Colony
2809 S Harvard Ave
Tulsa, OK
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Cost: $10

Where:
Vanguard
222 N Main St
Tulsa, OK
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Where:
Hard Rock Casino - Riffs
777 W Cherokee St
Catoosa, OK
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Where:
Mercury Lounge
1747 S Boston Ave
Tulsa, OK
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Where:
Hard Rock Casino - Cabin Creek
777 W Cherokee St
Catoosa, OK
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Where:
River Spirit Casino - 5 O'Clock Somewhere Bar
8330 Riverside Pkwy
Tulsa, OK
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Where:
River Spirit Casino - Volcano Stage
8330 Riverside Pkwy
Tulsa, OK
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Cost: $40-$129

Where:
River Spirit Casino - Paradise Cove
8330 Riverside Pkwy
Tulsa, OK
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Cost: $13-$54

Where:
BOK Center
200 S Denver Ave
Tulsa, OK
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Making plans for this weekend? You can't do better than The Drunkard & The Olio at the historic Spotlight Theater. You know you've always wanted to go, and now's your chance. And if...

Cost: Adults $20, kids $12, seniors & military $17

Where:
Spotlight Theater
1381 Riverside Dr.
Tulsa, OK  74127
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Cost: $15-$44

Where:
Reynolds Center
3208 E 8th St
Tulsa, OK
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Where:
The Max Retropub
114 S Elgin Ave
Tulsa, OK
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Cost: $18-$20

Where:
Woody Guthrie Center
102 E M.B. Brady St
Tulsa, OK
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Where:
The Hunt Club
224 N Main St
Tulsa, OK
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Where:
Soundpony
409 N Main St
Tulsa, OK
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TULtalk


Our 2017 covers — ranked by you!

Our covers have featured everything from Tulsa's most promising young folks to some seriously delicious holiday food. But which cover from this year was your favorite?

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Video: Magic City Books

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In like a lion

From the late 1950s through early ’80s, popular puppet King Lionel accompanied announcer and weatherman Lee Woodward.

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From the editor: December 2017

I haven’t been a lot of places, but I have been to the “A Christmas Story” house in Cleveland, Ohio.

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Nonprofit giving guide

A giving guide to provide needed items for Tulsa nonprofits

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