Almost directly in the center of Oklahoma lies a somewhat hidden treasure: Oklahoma City. With a population of 638,367 as of 2016, it ranks as the 27th largest city in the U.S., according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau.
Up from a population of 582,110 in 2010, more people are discovering the secret of Oklahoma City – often shortened to simply “OKC” – and for good reason. Why? Here are just a few of the positives people find in OKC.
It’s not called “The Big Friendly” for nothing. Oklahoma City applied to have this nickname trademarked in 2007 because officials thought it reflected the spirit of the city so well, The Oklahoman reported.
“I really like to think of that ‘Big Friendly’ as an opportunity our fathers might want to look at – is Oklahoma City a friendly city?” said Centennial Commission Director Blake Wade. “And I think absolutely it is.”
Local hotel general manager John Williams explained it excellently when he suggested a visiting chef, Andrew Black, to ask residents for directions to OKC’s Bricktown, The Oklahoman reported.
“Six of 10 people won’t just give you directions, but they’ll also offer to lead you to Bricktown themselves,” Williams told Black. The chef found that William’s advice was spot-on. Many helpful people even recommended places to eat dinner and gave suggestions for favorite local businesses.
It’d be safe to assume that Black didn’t just learn about OKC residents’ friendliness by taking Williams’ dare, but also discovered the many fun things to do in Bricktown. This area, a revitalized formerly abandoned warehouse district, is filled with entertainment, shopping and a plethora of tasty food. The Bricktown Canal, meandering down the center of the district, is a local favorite, according to TripSavvy. If boat rides aren’t your thing, you can take a tour of the area on a horse-drawn carriage ride. Some favorite shops include Bass Pro Shop and The Painted Door, which features specialty gifts and novelty items.
It comes as a surprise to many who’ve never visited the city, but OKC is actually full of culture. From the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum to the Oklahoma Hall of Fame, there’s plenty to see and learn in Oklahoma City. At the Hall of Fame, you’ll learn that many famous people got their starts in the Sooner State, including aviation innovator Wiley Post, BMX biker Mat Hoffman and singer Reba McEntire. Speaking of the state’s musical history, take a trip to OKC’s American Banjo Museum; you’ll learn about the surprisingly extensive history of the banjo, starting in Africa and evolving through bluegrass, jazz and other musical movements.
When choosing a place to live, it’s important to find a locale with an affordable cost of living and a strong job market. Entrepreneurs seeking out the best place to plant their roots need look no farther than OKC. The cost of doing business in OKC is close to 5 percent below the national average, and taxes are relatively low, too, according to CNBC. Further, small-business owners with 90 or fewer employees can receive 5 percent cash back on payroll for as many as seven years if they move to or expand in Oklahoma.
There are a plethora of career choices in the Sooner State, U.S. News & World Report pointed out. Some areas with plenty of opportunities include aviation, health care and energy. OKC’s neighbor, Midwest City, is home to Tinker Air Force Base, with more than 26,000 military and civilian employees.
Whether you’re new to OKC or you’ve been happily living in “The Big Friendly” for years, you may one day need somewhere to house some of your things. If you’re looking for personal storage units in Oklahoma City, you’re in luck. SecurCare Self Storage has 17 convenient storage locations in the OKC area.