No exciting concerts and no big conventions in OKC


At the TulsaNow forum, I recited the rather boring list of concerts and events that Oklahoma City's Ford Center has on its schedule for the next year. Karen Keith responded that the reason there wasn't much on the Ford Center calendar is because Oklahoma City is still using the old Myriad (now the Cox Business Services Convention Center) for some concerts. I doubted that, but didn't have the info at my fingertips.

So I checked the calendar of the Cox Business Services Convention Center. No concerts from now through the end of the year.

Not only that, but there aren't any big conventions being held there either. The National Rural Water Association and the PEO Sisterhood are the only apparently national organizations meeting there for the remainder of the year. There are a number of state organizational meetings -- meetings OKC already got before the Myriad had its facelift, meetings Tulsa will rarely get because OKC is a more convenient location for organizations with a statewide membership.

But like Tulsa's downtown convention center, the Myriad is competing with hotels and suburban centers for conventions. The new Reed Center in Midwest City is sized for smaller conventions and surrounded by moderately priced hotel rooms. The Oklahoma Republican Party held its 2003 convention there. 2001 and 2002 meetings were held at the Meridian Convention Center, part of the Clarion Hotel near the airport. The 2000 convention was the last time we used the Myriad, as far as I can recall.

So why isn't OKC getting the big national conventions with the big payoffs? Maybe it's because the national convention industry is losing steam. Maybe it's because the same reasons that convention planners gave for not coming to Tulsa apply to OKC as well, even with the remodeled facilities. More on that in the next entry.

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on August 10, 2003 2:27 AM.

Tulsa Now forum was the previous entry in this blog.

If we fix up our convention center, they still won't come is the next entry in this blog.

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