THE STATE OF OKLAHOMA
The current state flag of Oklahoma, designed by Louise Fluke, was adopted in 1925 (Oklahoma had 13 previous flags). The blue field signifies devotion, the shield is a symbol of defensive or protective warfare, but always surmounted by the olive branch and peace pipe which betoken the love of peace by a united people.
The Oklahoma rose was designated the official state flower of Oklahoma in 2004. One of the most fragrant of hybrid tea roses, the Oklahoma rose is dark red, nearly black velvet in warm weather. Long pointed buds open into huge, fully double blooms that are extremely fragrant with wonderfully strong, sweet old rose perfume.
The rose has been around for about 35 million years and grows naturally throughout North America. The rose is our national flower, and several states have adopted roses as official state symbols: the rose in New York, Cherokee rose in Georgia, and the wild prairie rose in Iowa and North Dakota.
Oklahoma designated the scissor-tailed flycatcher as the official state bird in 1951 (it is also featured on the Oklahoma quarter). Protected by law, the scissor-tailed flycatcher is of great economic value (its diet consists almost entirely of non-useful and harmful insect species such as grasshoppers, crickets, and beetles).
This songbird's unique scissor-like tail can be twice as long as its body. It catches most prey by aerial hawking, but will also grab insects off vegetation
Oklahoma designated redbud as the official state tree in 1937. The redbud is a small deciduous tree with reddish-pink blossoms that brighten the Oklahoma landscape in early spring.
THINGS TO DO
The Oklahoma City Thunder is an American professional basketball team based in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The team plays in the Northwest Division of the Western Conference in the National Basketball Association.
The Oklahoma Aquarium opened its doors to the public on May 28, 2003, but the facility became a dream and a passion for founders Dr. P.R. Ramey and Doug Kemper in 1984. From an idea literally drawn on a napkin, the Oklahoma Aquarium weathered many trials through building support and fundraising until the vision of Jenks city leaders led the Oklahoma Aquarium Foundation to settle on a plot of land on the west bank of the Arkansas River.
Turner Falls Park is the oldest park in Oklahoma and is named for Mazeppa Thomas Turner. Turner was born in Virginia and married a Chickasaw named Laura Johnson. He then became a farmer in Murray County and in 1878 he and is wife settled in a cabin along Honey Creek. Turner discovered the nearby waterfall, which earned his name. The recreational area came under the ownership of the city of Davis in 1919. Davis operated the park until 1950, and then leased it out until 1978, when they resumed management of the area. Davis purchased 370 acres for the park from the Turner family in 1925, paying a reported sum of $17,000.
The 1500-acre area around the falls has been compared to the Grand Canyon and the Black Hills, in that the terrain provides a geological view into the past.
The Park has received national publicity and serves as a classroom for naturalists as it includes three natural caves, formations of conglomerates, limestone, granite, shale and sandstone.
Turner Falls Park is nestled below the famous Arbuckle Mountains and forms Honey Creek, which then cascades down a seventy-seven (77) foot fall to a natural swimming pool making the majestic Turner Falls the largest waterfall in Oklahoma. The Park has been a recreational area since 1868 as it is accented with beautiful picnic areas, nature trails, caves, geological wonders, and two natural swimming pools very unique in nature.
The City of Davis operates the park and everyone is welcome to enjoy the 1500 acres of fun in the "Heart of the Arbuckle's".