The Emmett Kelly Museum and The Tulsa Historical Society

Some points of interest in my travels. Hope everyone had a great holiday!

Welcome back. Unsure what to get someone for Christmas? How about a gift of travel to the Emmett Kelly museum in Sedan, Kansas? Emmett Kelly was a famous clown in in the 1930s, 40s and 50s who performed with the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus and also appeared on Broadway and in the movies.  His signature character was “Weary Willie” a sad clown whom Kelly portrayed without the traditional whiteface makeup that other clowns were wearing at the time. Kelly was born in Sedan in 1898 and today the museum that is dedicated to his life and work is housed in the historic Sedan Opera House. I took the opportunity to check it out when I was in town last week and it is well worth a trip.

Built side by side in 1919 by oilmen Dave and Sam Travis, these two homes were constructed in what was a remote and mostly undeveloped part of Tulsa but today 32nd and Peoria is one of the city’s main drags. The Travis brothers left Tulsa in the mid-1920s but their homes would become landmarks. Dave’s residence eventually became the home of the Tulsa Garden Center and Sam’s is now the Tulsa Historical Society and Museum. In addition to the interesting exhibits about Tulsa at the Historical Society, both homes are surrounded by beautiful gardens and walking paths making this a great destination for a day trip.

After some research I discovered that the Historical Society is involved in other projects outside of the museum and one of these is maintaining the oldest private cemetery in Tulsa. The neighborhood at 32nd and Utica is full of homes and businesses now but back in 1848 this was a rural area when Tulsa’s first cemetery was established here after a cholera outbreak. There are roughly fifty markers in the graveyard and the Historical Society makes sure that they are well maintained, preserving the memory of these early Tulsans. It is called the Perryman Cemetery after Lewis Perryman who built a log cabin in the area after running a successful cattle operation, all in a time prior to the Civil War.

I will be at the Tulsa Historical Society and Museum on Tuesday November 29th at 7PM for a Tulsa premiere of Footprints in the Dew: The Last Ten Tapes. It is a small theater so please get your tickets early at www.tulsahistory.org, click on “events”.

The early reviews of the film are coming in from audiences and so far they are very good. A sold out showing in Sedan was followed by a showing to several hundred enthusiastic people in Ponca City which means that the December 8th showing in Dewey will be a hot ticket. Call the Heritage Theater, Café and Pub for reservations at 918-440-2393 You can also enjoy dinner and drinks while you watch the movie in this unique setting. If you haven’t been in downtown Dewey lately, you’ll find several new shops and as I’ve already said, with Christmas around the corner you may just find that gift you’ve been looking for.

Till next time, I’ll see ya down the road…..

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Footprints in the Dew: The Last Ten Tapes in Pawhuska, OK Tonight

Looking forward to showing my film Footprints in the Dew: The Last Ten Tapes  in Pawhuska at the Constantine Theater tonight. Tickets are $12 per person and will be sold at the door. The screening is at 7PM. If you haven’t been to the Constantine before, it is a beautiful historic theater located on Main Street across from Ree Drummond’s (aka the Pioneer Woman) new Mercantile.

Footprints in the Dew: The Last Ten Tapes

Very excited about the first screenings of my new documentary….

Welcome back. The motion picture business opened up the world for small town communities around the country in the early 1900s and many beautifully designed theaters were built to showcase a new fad called motion pictures. In the northeastern corner of Oklahoma several of these old theaters have been bought by local residents or civic groups trying to save a piece of Americana. As you regular readers know I’m currently on a book signing tour and added to that now I’m happy to announce a film tour mostly in these historic theaters. Entitled “Footprints in the Dew: The Last Ten Tapes”, the film contains never before seen footage from the interviews I conducted while writing “Footprints in the Dew: Chub Anderson and the Unsolved Mullendore Murder.”

The first showing will be at the Gregg Theater in Sedan Kansas on November 15th. Local businessman Roger Floyd saved and restored the theater and it is typical of early American movie theaters. The box office is in the front, then there is a concession stand and a spiral staircase leading to the projection room. The seating area is long and narrow and most of the original details in the building are still intact. The folks in Sedan are still treated to movies on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights just like in the old days. This will be the first Kansas showing of The Last Ten Tapes and advance ticket purchases are highly recommended. Tickets are $12 per person and they are available at the Bank of Sedan and at First National Bank of Sedan. With very limited seating, they tell me they are certain to sell out so please call 620-725-3408 for more information.

The next shot at seeing the film will be on November 17th at the Poncan Theater in Ponca City. It’s an honor to show the film in this historic theater which was built in 1927 and added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1985. Due to financial difficulties the theater was closed from 1985-1994 but an enterprising group of Ponca City residents took it over and it has been at the heart of the community’s art scene ever since. Folks, this show house is truly an Oklahoma treasure. It it beautiful to look at both inside and out, reflecting the elegance of a bygone era. The entire historic downtown area of Ponca City is a must visit and I’ll be hanging out there before the 7PM showing. A free wine and cheese reception for movie goers will be held inside the Cherokee Strip Company so come check it out. Tickets for the show are $12 per person and will be sold at the door.

On Tuesday, November 22nd I will be bringing the film to the Constantine Theater in Pawhuska for another 7PM showing. The Constantine is another historic theater that has been beautifully restored and cared for by a dedicated group of volunteers. This will also be a great chance to check out Ree Drummond’s new Mercantile and the other great shops along Main Street all of which are open till 5 or 6. This is a town that made history in the early days of the west and is also the hometown of one of my favorite people, Ben Johnson.

If these dates don’t work out for you, there will be a final showing in November at the Tulsa Historical Society at 7PM on November 29th and ticket information is available on their website www.tulsahistory.org The December calendar is filling up fast so stay tuned for those dates as well.

All you OU fans can catch me and Joe Washington this Friday back at Balfour’s in Norman from 2-4. Then it’s on to the big Wannamaker’s Gun Show at the Tulsa Fairgrounds on Saturday and Sunday. Advertised as the world’s largest gun show, they have a lot more than just guns making it a good place to do some early Christmas shopping.

Till next time I’ll see ya down the road……….

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Halloween and the Grand Opening of Ree Drummond’s New Mercantile

Things will never be the same in Pawhuska, OK…..

Welcome back. In 1919 a group of volunteer citizens in Independence, Kansas started a festival for kids of all ages to celebrate Halloween in a safe, fun environment. Over the years this event has grown into the second largest annual celebration in the state. With three parades, a chili cook-off and lots of music as well as a carnival, a 10K run and numerous food vendors, the festival offers something for everyone. This year the musical line-up included finalists from TV’s The Voice, Alaska & Madi who are managed by my friend Jim Halsey. During an interview, Independence firefighter Barry Beurskens who also operates a great BBQ food truck told me the crowds were at record levels. By this time you locals know I’m talking about Neewollah which is Halloween spelled backwards and with the great weather I know everyone had a wonderful time.

As for me I had to be in Norman on Friday so I missed the big music show. The party I started at Balfour’s on Campus Corner is growing as the Sooner football team continues to win. It was another fun time and my next appearance there with Silver Shoes Joe Washington is Friday, November 11th, hope to see you there the day before Baylor Game. We will be at Balfour’s from 2-4 PM and once again Bob Stoops’ restaurant Louis’ Grill will be supplying free food. You really never know who might drop in.

After Friday’s gig, I was booked for two days at the Oklahoma City fairgrounds for a book signing at the big Grand National Gun and Knife Show. If you’ve never been to the fairgrounds, it is a huge venue with numerous buildings for all types of events and it looked to me like every building had something going on as all the parking lots were full. In the big Jim Norick Arena, the weeklong United States Team Roping Championship was in full swing. Friends, I found out that these cowboys come from all over the United States and Canada to try and win a piece of the $5,000,000 prize money that’s up for grabs. The competition is a lot of fun to watch and if you’re interested in going, the event is held in October every year in Oklahoma City.

Still on the move, Monday found me in Pawhuska at the grand opening of Ree Drummond’s new Mercantile. The waiting line was at least one hundred deep most of the day as people came from all around the country to check it out. These visitors also got the chance to explore some of the other neat shops in town. Across the street from Ree’s place is Osage Outfitters which is owned by Joey and Callie Lee. You’ll recognize the store by the twelve saddles they’ve got sitting out front. Inside is wall to wall cowboy merchandise, from clothing to boots, artwork to toys. This young couple has it all located in an old historic building right on Main Street. Right next door I found another interesting store full of artwork that caught my attention, particularly the work of an artist named Carolyn Mock. Mock is from Bartlesville and her paintings of animals look so natural you can almost hear their sounds.

Still another interesting shop is Big Country Pawn and Supply. At first glance you can tell this is not your average pawn shop and with all the metal artwork on display it looked more like an art gallery. You will need some time to browse through everything they have on hand so check it out along with the other little shops in Pawhuska. I’m sure you’ll find something you’re looking for.

Till next week I’ll see ya down the road…..

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Footprints in the Dew: The Last Ten Tapes

For all of you who have been following my project, I’m excited to announce that a new documentary “Footprints in the Dew: The Last Ten Tapes” has just been completed and will have several showings in November. The documentary features never before seen interviews with key characters in the unsolved (until now) murder of leading Oklahoma rancher E.C. Mullendore II, including Chub Anderson.

Scheduled screenings:

November 15th: The Greg Theater, Sedan, KS 7PM  $12 per person For tickets call: 620-725-3408

November 17th: The Poncan Theater, Ponca City, OK 7PM $12 per person. Tickets at the door

November 22nd: The Constantine Theater, Pawhuska, OK 7PM $12 per person. Tickets at the door

November 29th: The Tulsa Historical Society, Tulsa, OK 7PM Tickets at:  www:eventbrite.com/film-showing-footprints-in-the-dew-tickets-29048711478