This Saturday morning Mom, Holly, Lois, and I drove 4 hours to Medicine Park, OK. http://www.medicinepark.com/ My Mom had a friend that visited this little location almost a year ago, and recommended it, AND there is a nearby Wildlife Refuge that is listed in the book 1,000 Places to See Before you Die in the USA and Canada by Patricia Schultz. We didn't really know what to expect upon arrival. Medicine Park is a small town surrounded by rivers, and lakes. Native Americans once felt like the waters in the area had medicinal powers, hence the name. In the early 1900's this was a swinging resort town for the rich and famous, and what's left are the shells of those buildings, now given characteristics of the last 100 years, while keeping their cobblestone faces. There are a lot of walking, and 'looking' opportunities, a swimming hole, and trout fishing nearby. There are little shops along the river and throughout the little town streets with lots of personality, and friendly owners. They appear to only be open on Saturdays, so we were in luck.
This isn't my typical shopping experience, though I managed to find a few things, I think the feel is more relaxation. Things move slow, there is lots of character in the local's houses-lots of yard art, and a mecca for plastic animal fun-in a good way. It's a lot of fun, and definitely somewhere to go and relax. We only had the chance to try out one restaurant called The Plantation, and it was actually REALLY excellent home cooking (yummy rolls), and it's located in what used to be the 'Grand Hotel' across from the main swimming hole. http://www.theoldplantationrestaurant.com/
We stayed at a little place called the Blue Eyed Coyote.
http://www.blueeyedcoyote.com/ My best description is that it's like a B&B, but separated from the owner's house, so....also, think cabin. It has a little bedroom, living room with dish TV, and a propane fireplace (it can sleep up to 6, but I think 4 was a pretty comfortable number), restroom, kitchen, and eating space with lots of great windows. Pots and pans, silverware, towels, etc are provided (though we did find there are no cookie sheets or casserole baking dishes-which we needed, but were creative, just....fyi). There is also another guest house in the works. The best part is the view-a huge yard, and wrap around porch, and patio overlooking the Wichita Mountains with lots of seating, fire pit, grill etc....and....the best greeting party ever.
There are lots of little cottages for rent in Medicine Park (some include stays from famous outlaws who passed through-like Al Capone, and Bonnie and Clyde), but....I definitely recommend this one. :O) After touring the little town of Medicine Park, and taking a little survey of the nearby Wildlife Refuge (my next post), we spent the evening playing games.
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