The storm is over. With nothing but sunny skies and gradually warming temperatures predicted through the end of the week, the Tulsa Sports Expo will be the perfect place to bring your cabin-feverish family. Let the kids shoot some hoops and toss a football or play Guitar Hero or chase down an autograph from Billy Sims, Marcus Dupree, Nolan Richardson, Bill Blankenship or long drive champion Jason Eslinger.
We’ll have all the lots cleared, the sun will be shining and temperatures will be warming into the 40s when the Expo opens at 11 a.m. Friday at the Exchange Center at Expo Square. Come by to meet new TU football coach Bill Blankenship, who will be in the TU/Tulsa Sports Commission booth for a meet and greet from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Or chat with longtime Tulsa PGA Tour star Ron Streck, the first golfer to use a metal wood in competition and the first to win on the PGA Tour, Nationwide Tour and Champions Tour. Our first speaker of the day will be another former PGA Tour player, TU’s own Michael Boyd, now the director of golf at Indian Springs Country Club.
The golf courses will still be unplayable, but what a perfect time to come test out the latest in equipment. There’s going to be a lot of new technology that won’t be in the pro shops for months and you can be the first to test it. And there will be tremendous discounts on equipment and apparel from such vendors as the Tulsa County pro shops.
On Friday evening, the expo goes into party mode from 5-8 with the lively music of J3 along with great beer and food specials. Jason Eslinger will take on all comers in a special beat the long drive champion event in the hitting net at 6. For no charge, you can take three swings against the champ and win a nice prize if you do. And nice guy that he is, he’s been known to give a head start as well.
On Saturday, kids will enjoy the special demonstration by students of Tae Kwon Do grand master D.W. Kang at 11:30 a.m.. Former LPGA Tour player and First Tee of Tulsa director Janice Gibson will be out to do a seminar at 11 a.m., after which her students will be in the hitting net to show their skills and meet and encourage other junior golfers.
Nolan Richardson, one of the most beloved figures in Tulsa sports history, takes the stage at noon to discuss his WNBA team the Tulsa Shock, his past at the University of Tulsa and some of the life stories that went into his recent blockbuster book Forty Minutes of Hell. Richardson will be followed on stage by Eslinger, the leading money winner in 2010 on the Long Drivers of America Tour.
Also at noon, one of the greatest and most enigmatic Sooners of all time, Marcus Dupree, will join Billy Sims in the Boomertown Game Zone sponsored by Billy Sims Barbeque and Boomertown Sports, which specializes in OU, OSU and TU gear and merchandise.
From 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, a special treat is in store as the costumed Luchadore wrestlers take the stage. Bring your friends and family for this exciting spectacle sponsored by Elote Restaurant. Remember, kids 16 and under are no charge and we’ll have special $3 admission for all adults from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday night.
Ladies, Sunday will be the last chance before Valentine’s Day to get that special someone the gift he’ll cherish. How about a romantic getaway to one of the many travel destinations that will be represented, the sugar sand beeches of Alabama to hideaways in Branson, Lake of the Ozarks, Texas, or a ski trip with the Tulsa Ski Club. And guys, here’s the great thing, we have booths selling silver jewelry and other fine gifts with free gift wrapping. Talk about two birds with one stone!
Did we mention that merely by coming to the Expo, you can receive a full year’s subscription to Golf Digest at no charge, be eligible for tremendous door prizes and get a free green fee to Battle Creek Golf Course among other goodies.
Info for Tulsa Sports & Entertainment Expo
Dates: Feb. 11-13.
Admission, $7, children 16-under free with paid adult, Seniors 55 and over $5.
Hours: Friday 11-8, Saturday 9-8, Sunday 10-5
Friday Night Happy Hour
5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Drink specials, Live Music with J3, Beat the Long Drive Champion contest.
Luchadore Wrestling sponsored by Elote
6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Noon, Michael Boyd, PGA professional
1 p.m., Ron Streck, Champions Tour
2 p.m.Paul Clagg, SouthLakes
3 p.m., Marshall Smith, Golf Instructor
5 p.m. Live Music with J3
6 p.m., Long Drive champion Jason Eslinger in net
10 a.m., Marshall Smith, PGA Professional
11 a.m., Janice Gibson, First Tee of Tulsa
Noon, Nolan Richardson, Head coach, Tulsa Shock
1:15 p.m., Jason Eslinger, Long Drive Champion
2 p.m., Michael Boyd, Golf Instructor
3 p.m.,Tom Budders, Skiing
4 p.m., Pat McTigue, GolfTec
6:30 p.m., Luchadore Wrestlers
1 p.m., Paul Clagg, PGA Professional
2, p.m., Tracy Phillips, PGA professional
3 p.m., GolfTec
2:30, Kamagon Fitness
3 p.m., Sheila’s Dance Team
3:30, Broken Arrow Youth Cheerleading
4:40, Kamagon Fitness
5 p.m., Live Music with J3
10:30, Kamagon Fitness
11:30, Kang’s Tae Kwon Do Demonstration
1 p.m., Booker T. Washington Drum Line
2 p.m., Tulsa Talons Dance Team
2:45 p.m., Kamagon Fitness
3:30, Tulsa Talons
1 p.m., Kamagon Fitness
2 p.m. Ice Girls (Tulsa Oilers)
Best Buy Guitar Hero Contest (Prizes include Xbox 360 with Kinect and 50-inch Insignia Plasma)
$10,000 Tulsa Golf Putting Contest
Long Drive Contest
Boomertown Game Zone (Free Throw contest, football toss)
Tulsa Drillers Pitching Contest