Friends of the Fair Kick-Off Party to Celebrate Oklahoma

FUN AT THE PAVILION: Getting ready for this year’s Annual Fair Kick-Off Party are, from left, Friends of the Fairgrounds Foundation board members Steve Hunter of Cox Radio and Melissa Fell of Behind the Pipe LLC, and Friends of the Fairgrounds Chairman of the Board Jono Helmerich. The event will be held at Expo Square on Sept. 14 beginning at 6:30 p.m.

GTR Newspapers photo

Friends of the Fair will “Celebrate Oklahoma Style” at the 6th Annual Fair Kick-Off Party at Expo Square Sept. 14 from 6:30 – 11 p.m. Honorary Chairs for this year’s event are Sherri and Bill Hader. Guests can enjoy live and silent auction items, authentic fair food and dance to the Mid-Life Crisis Band. This year’s event features a sports room called the “Tulsa 66ers Locker Room.” The event will include areas celebrating Oklahoma’s Centennial such as Native America, the Oil Boom, aerospace, centennial park and Route 66.

Event contributions will assist in funding the “Fun on the Farm” interactive children’s farming exhibit, which debuted at the 2005 Tulsa State Fair. Utilizing a hands-on method, this project teaches children the process of farming as well as its economic impact on everyday life. The exhibit contains seven stations, each teaching about a different aspect of farm life. Additionally, funds will provide a Portable Access Lift for the physically challenged who attend events at Expo Square.

Each year the Friends of the Fair Foundation helps with financial support for special projects. In 2006, the Foundation raised over $212,000 and event contributions funded the “Make it and Take it” Room, “Discovering Science” Exhibit in the Just for Kids Building and a memorial paying tribute to Denny Tuttle. The past five Kick-Off parties have assisted in funding the “Little Hands on the Farm” interactive children’s farming, the installation of the lighting system on the derrick adjacent to the Golden Driller, provided lighting improvements in the Pavilion, various landscaping beautification amenities as well as a portable surgical room that debuted in the Birthing Center at the 2003 Tulsa State Fair. Other planned projects include the development of garden/recreation areas at Expo Square. The Foundation is committed to ensuring the longevity of the fairgrounds through upcoming improvements with monies collected from a naming rights program being placed in a future endowment.

The live auction includes:

• Party at the Pavilion with the Mid-Life Crisis Band;
• Advertising for two weeks on the seven electronic message boards at Expo Square;
• Name the streets at Expo Square (2 streets per package, 3 packages available);
• Choice beef donated by Richard and Susan Gebhart of Beacon Hill Ranch and processing by Walke Brothers Meat Company;
• Package from Holiday Inn Select;
• Backyard Adventures item;
• Tanning bed donated by Wholesale Hot Tubs;
• Metal sculpture donated by Michael Hanson;
• Hand-crafted diamond pendant donated by Massoud Moheb of Massoud’s;
• Limited edition commemorative Oklahoma Centennial bronze paver with name inscription;
• Traveling pizza party for ten donated by the Beefaloni Brothers;
• Coca-Cola vending machine donated by Great Plains Coca-Cola Bottling Company;
• Four penthouse-level tickets to the 2008 Indianapolis 500 donated by the Zink Family;
• NBA All Star Game Package donated by the Tulsa 66ers;
• Two 2008 Chili Bowl VIP tickets for any night including VIP seating and passes into the pits donated by Emmett Hahn and Lanny Edwards;
• Backyard Adventures Play Set (includes fort, swings, slide) donated by Backyard Adventures of Green Country;
• Oklahoma Landmark Vacation Package donated by the Holiday Inn Select;
• Stream-side dinner and fly fishing lessons for six donated by Gary Neal and Jerry Parkhurst;
• Original Oil Painting by Matt Moffett;
• Party for twenty-five with admission, various ride and food accommodations at the Tulsa State Fair donated by Murphy Enterprises; and
• Wild Turkey Hunt for four at the Pat Bruner’s “Million Dollar Centennial” Ranch donated by Pat Bruner.

A 501©(3) corporation, the Friends of the Fairgrounds Foundation, Inc., was formed to support the development of Expo Square by increasing public awareness of Expo Square’s economic contribution and by providing educational, cultural and charitable programs, benefits, services and facilities to the community, state and region.

Updated 09-10-2007

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