The NCAA Tournament is in town, and OKC is hosting the first rounds--we've got Kansas, K-State, Northern Iowa, and BYU in town still. The funny thing about having both of the Kansas teams in town is that I constantly log onto the Kansas City urban forums and see countless stories of people's bad experiences in OKC. The premise that these "I had a bad time in OKC" posts are based on is that these people, from KC, want to see if all the good press about OKC is true, and they all end up having a horrible time in OKC for whatever reason. Some of the top things you see written about OKC on this site are..
1. I had to get a hotel room in El Reno or Norman (or some other ridiculously far suburb).
2. Bricktown was dead, and there was nothing to do on a Thursday night. No clubs, restaurants, retail, people, etc.
3. I got a parking ticket everywhere I parked. (this is no doubt the most believable reason)
4. I actually had a good time, but the Ford Center is a piece of crap..I missed the Sprint Center.
5. There were no hot chicks, which surprised me with the proximity to Norman.
This post on Steve's OKC Central blog is intended for all of the out-of-town fans, to give them a good suggestion of things to do. In the interest of diversity, and because I'm familiar with some "high-brow" places in KC, perhaps I can offer up my own suggestions that I think the KCers will enjoy (because let's be serious, the majority of fans here are going to be from KC).
Bar-b-que that's almost as good as Kansas City..
1. County Line, NE 63rd and MLK
2. Earl's Rib Palace, Bricktown
3. Mr Sprigg's BBQ, Midwest City (since that's probably where your hotel is..jk)
The current local hotspot
1. Iguana Mexican Grill, NW 9th
2. McNellie's Irish Pub, Midtown
3. Nonna's Euro-American Restaurant, Bricktown
Where the locals eat
1. Big Truck Tacos, NW 23rd Uptown
2. Irma's Burger Shack, Midtown
3. The Wedge Pizzeria, Deep Deuce
Where the locals hang out
1. Full Circle Bookstore, 50 Penn Place
2. Cuppies and Joe, NW 23rd Uptown
3. Sage Gourmet Market, Deep Deuce
1. Cattlemen's Steakhouse, Stockyards City
2. VZD's Restaurant & Club, Western Ave
3. Mickey Mantle's Steakhouse, Bricktown
If you must leave the inner city..
1. UCO Jazz Lab, Edmond
2. Cafe Plaid, Norman
3. The Opolis, Norman
Best new upscale restaurant
1. Red Prime Steakhouse, Automobile Alley
2. Trattoria il Centro, Arts District
3. Soleil Restaurant, Downtown CBD
Best downtown-area nightlife
1. Sapphire Bar & Lounge, Bricktown
2. Maker's Cigar Bar, Bricktown
3. Cafe do Brazil (Bossa Nova at the Top), Midtown
Best north side nightlife
1. VZD's Restaurant and Club, Western Ave
2. 51st Street Speakeasy
3. Prohibition Room, NW 23rd Uptown
Best coffee places
1. The Red Cup, Classen Blvd
2. The Beatnix Cafe, Midtown
3. Coffee Slingers, Automobile Alley
Best urban areas to just check out
1. Automobile Alley
2. The Paseo
3. Western Ave.
Best value hotel downtown (to book early for next time)
1. Hampton Inn, Bricktown
2. Skirvin Hilton, Downtown CBD
3. Sheraton Hotel, Downtown CBD
This post must be read and taken with a grain of salt in light of the fact that a good experience can be had at virtually any locally-owned establishment in OKC. Unlike in some other cities perhaps, locally-owned places in OKC are almost always nice, and almost never "scary."