The Nonprofit World During Covid19

Welcome back.  Nurses, fire fighters and cops. They all play important roles in our life’s journey and as we age there’s another group of people that is just as important. Can you imagine being a senior citizen still living at home on your own but unable to get out because of the pandemic? What if your kids live far away and your friends are in the same situation, unable to get out. Who gets your medication, brings you groceries, helps you clean the house, do the laundry and maybe even prepare some meals?

All this could be a huge problem except for a group of people who despite the danger are going to seniors’ homes, doing all of these things and more. Throughout the pandemic care managers and in-home workers have continued to help their clients all over Washington and Nowata counties as well as in Craig, Delaware, Kay, Mayes. Rogers and Osage counties.

So, you may ask who does this wonderful work for seniors, many times at no cost to them and also providing much needed personal contact during this period of extreme isolation? Well, if you haven’t guessed by now it’s Elder Care.

Most of you are probably familiar with this great organization but for those of you who aren’t here’s a little history. Elder Care was founded in 1983 and at the time it was the first organization in the state dedicated to serving the needs of senior adults and allowing them, or should I say us, to live independently in our own homes for as long as possible. When the organization began there were two staff members, today they employ over eighty workers in a broad range of programs including adult day health, physical therapy, speech therapy, care management, and caregiver services, They also have a great social networking group, exercise classes and support groups. Many of these activities are now taking place on line but I’m happy to report that some of their programs such as physical therapy have slowly reopened following strict safety guidelines. Elder Care is located at 1223 Swan Drive in Bartlesville and their number is (918) 336-8500. You can also visit to learn more about everything they offer.

Another of Elder Care’s core programs which never closed is the W.R. Bohon Senior Health Clinic. Dr. Jerry Brad Jarrell is the clinic doctor and he is currently the only internist in the Bartlesville area. Throughout the pandemic the clinic has continued to serve the community with both telemedicine and in person consultation, ensuring that prescriptions are filled and crucial care is provided to patients.

Elder Care is just one example of the many outstanding not-for-profits serving Bartlesville and the surrounding communities. All of these organizations have taken a substantial financial blow from the pandemic due to shut downs, cancellation of major fund-raising events and a very slow resumption of normal operations for safety’s sake. I am leaving this story by passing the offering plate. If you’ve got some spare change make a donation to your favorite charity. If you don’t have one consider a gift to Elder Care, it’s tax deductible of course.

Coming up for me this weekend is the big R&K Gun Show at the Tulsa Fairgrounds, then I’m off to Branson, Missouri to see how they are coping with all this.

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

Rodeo Season

Welcome back. Founded in 1947, the world’s largest amateur rodeo is back in Pawhuska this week and friends if rodeo is your sport the Pawhuska fairgrounds ought to be your destination. The fairgrounds itself sits three miles outside of town and you won’t miss it because there will be hundreds of campers and horse trailers there creating what is basically a small city for the week. Food vendors, musical acts and more, it’s a carnival atmosphere all centered on the main event and that’s the rodeo.

There will be two shows a day with a lot of family stuff happening in-between including the crowning of the new 2020 Cavalcade Queen. The downtown streets will be covered with sand for performances by Native American dancers that will be taking place throughout the week and of course unless they cancel it, they have a huge parade downtown as well so you might think about checking it out. Visit for the complete schedule.

Another rodeo going on nearby this weekend is the Green Country Classic Ranch Rodeo and Trade Show. Want to see how real cowboys do their daily work? Here is where you need to go. Wild cow milking, cattle branding, bronc riding; this rodeo can get wild! It’s held at the beautiful Claremore Expo Center, a facility every county dreams of having and you’ll see what I mean when you get there. Of course, the Will Rogers Museum is in Claremore so while you’re at the rodeo make time to visit Will, I guarantee you’ll enjoy it.

The rodeo begins at 7PM on Friday night and continues on Saturday night starting at 6PM. There’s a big trade show before both performances and during the day on Saturday they are holding a ranch horse competition and a junior rodeo. Looking for some fun? The Pawhuska Cavalcade and the Green Country Classic Rodeo offer entertainment for the whole family. Director Lester Gagan tells me this will be the last year for the Classic Rodeo and I plan to be at both shows so I hope to see you there.

After mentioning Lester’s name, I am reminded that we should all thank the hundreds of volunteers like him who organize these events. They are not paid and I can tell you these volunteers put in many, many hours behind the scenes to make things happen. They don’t do it for the thanks but thank them anyway.

Coming up for me next week is the big R&K Gun and Knife Show at the Tulsa Fairgrounds and if its anything like the last gun show that was held there two months ago, I suggest you arrive

 early if you’re looking for a particular gun. If you haven’t heard, guns are selling better right now than at any other time in recent history. This is a two-day show, Saturday from 9AM-5PM and Sunday from 9AM-4PM.

Also coming up it’s a scuba diving trip to an underwater state park and its right here in Oklahoma. And once again, thank a nurse, a fire fighter or a cop, they all need our support.

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

A Fallen Hero

Welcome back. The good guys and the bad guys. One wants to protect us, the other wants to take advantage of us and a week ago this past Monday one of the good guys paid the ultimate price for protecting us. It was a day that not just the brave police officers of our state cried but all the good hardworking people of Oklahoma as well shed a tear for Sgt. Craig Johnson, a 15-year veteran of the Tulsa police force. As I’m sure some of you readers know Sgt Johnson’s partner was also attacked but somehow survived after being shot in the head execution style. By all accounts it was a brutal and totally senseless act by a man who changed the lives of two families forever.

Friends these men and women in blue who often risk their lives are just as vital to us as the nurses and firemen I’ve written about over the past weeks. So, after contacting Tulsa lawyer Gentner Drummond once again for sponsorship, I can now offer free copies of Footprints in the Dew not only to nurses and volunteer fire fighters around the country but to cops as well. Yes if you know a police officer, highway patrol person, county deputy or any other kind of cop who may have helped you with life’s struggles just email their name to Nan Hight at Best of Books or call her at (405) 340-9202.  Their copy will be sent out free of any charges and if you’re ever in Edmond stop by her bookstore, there’s something for every reader. Once again, we’ve got to thank these men and women for their service and this is one way to do it but you can just say thanks to the next cop you see. I guarantee they need our support right now.

Coming up for me is a show and book signing in what used to be the state capitol back in 1907.  Guthrie, Oklahoma began as a railway station stop and experienced a population boom in 1889 after the Land Run added 10,000 new residents to the town.

Today Guthrie is known for its beautifully preserved late 19th and early 20th century architecture. The Guthrie Historic District is a National Historic Landmark and encompasses over 2000 buildings. The downtown has been featured in well-known movies such as Rain Man and Twister and is a popular tourist destination, offering carriage tours, shops, restaurants and art galleries. The town hosts several annual festivals including the Oklahoma International Bluegrass Festival and A Territorial Christmas Celebration. In addition, Guthrie is home to the Lazy E Arena which holds rodeo events throughout the year. The Little Britches Rodeo Finals will be going on there while I’m in town and I’ll be at the Badshot gun show on the Logan County Fairgrounds on Saturday from 9AM-5PM and Sunday from 9AM-4PM. There’s a lot of history in this town so I’m sure I’ll be bringing you some stories next week about Guthrie.

Since I’ve agreed to do a number of weekend book signings this summer at Lorec Ranch which is next door to the Mercantile in Pawhuska here is a quick report on the waiting line for food at Ree’s place   this past 4th of July weekend. From 11:30 on Friday until I left at 1:30 there was a two and a half hour wait. On Saturday during the same time period the wait was three and a half hours. All the retail merchants I talked with said business is good and from what I saw things seem to be coming back to life, at least on weekends.

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

Lake Tenkiller, Oklahoma

Welcome back. Over the past several weeks I’ve written about nurses and the fine job they do for mankind with their dedication and love. I know most of you readers have experienced this at least once in your lives. There’s another group of people that is just as dedicated which folks all over the country depend on and that’s the men and women of volunteer fire departments. From the Oglesby Fire Department to the Copan Fire Department, you can also count volunteer fire departments in Wann, Osage Hills, Hulah, Ochelata and beyond. Yes, friends these fire departments are all staffed by men and women who volunteer to put their lives on the line twenty-four hours a day to protect our lives, just like nurses.

We’ve got to thank them so once again with the help of my friend Gentner Drummond down Tulsa way, I have expanded our book giveaway to include volunteer fire fighters. Just like nurses around around the country, all you have to do to receive a free copy of my best selling book Footprints in the Dew is to email or call Best of Books in Edmond, OK at  (405) 340-9202 and one will be mailed to you free of charge. If you live out in a rural area and know of a deserving fire fighter just send their name to Best of Books and that fire fighter will get a copy. They don’t have to be local either- anyone around the country is eligible.  Although they are frequently overlooked, these folks are also essential workers and they ought to have our gratitude.

On another note, if you’re looking for a getaway here’s one I took myself last week which you might think about. Your destination will be Lake Tenkiller and the exact location is an Army Corps of Engineers viewing spot right above the dam. But before I get to that here’s a little history about the lake:

Located in the Cookson Hills of eastern Oklahoma, Lake Tenkiller was created in 1952 when the Army Corps of Engineers completed a dam across part of the Illinois River. The lake was built to provide flood control, hydroelectric power generation, water supply and recreation. and it was named for the Tenkiller family, prominent Cherokees who owned the land and ferry that were bought for the dam project.

Tenkiller itself is 13,000 acres in size and has 130 miles of beautiful wooded coastline. The lake offers 10 marinas, 14 parks and 24 boat launches all of which are managed by the State of Oklahoma and the Army Corps of Engineers. There are also numerous privately owned campgrounds and resorts.

Now that you have some background on the lake, here are a few other things you may find handy for your trip. Bring plenty of food and water as Gore is the closest town to the viewing area and with a population of just 800, some supplies can be unavailable there on certain days. If you want to swim, the state parks all have designated swimming areas and many of the marinas rent boats. Large pontoons go for $275 for four hours and $500 for eight hours- and you buy the gas.

Tenkiller is widely considered one of the clearest lakes in Oklahoma so scuba diving is very popular here and there are several places where you can take diving lessons. The state’s only underwater state park is located here as well.

If your trip turns into an all-nighter there is plenty of lodging available in the area and my favorite is the well-known Fin and Feather Resort which is about a half mile from the viewing area by water and a little further by road as this part of Oklahoma is hilly. The area is also somewhat remote so there is plenty of wildlife including black bears. This is a good trip and well worth a two day stay for sure.

 Till next time make sure to thank a nurse and a volunteer fire fighter and I’ll see ya down the road…