Letter to a third grader

I wrote this letter to a third grader in Pennsylvania as part of a class project.  Each person in his class has sent a notebook out into the world, to be filled with stories and pictures from its travels.  His teacher is my friend’s aunt, and so many from our group of friends agreed to participate.  Here is my brief introduction to Oklahoma City, for a third grader.

Hi S,

My name is J and I live in Oklahoma City. Oklahoma City is the capital of the state of Oklahoma, and is located in the middle of the state.   It is not too far away–only about a 5 hour drive–from the center of the continental United States in Lebanon, KS, and is about 3 hours north of Dallas, TX, the next closest big city.

Oklahoma City (we like to call it OKC) is a medium-sized city.  Many people here work for energy companies (oil and natural gas) or for the Air Force.  We have an NBA team called the Thunder.  They are playing very well this year, so people here are very excited about that.  We don’t have any other major league sports teams–but we do have a minor-league hockey team called the Barons and a minor-league baseball team called the Redhawks.  In the winter, the Redhawks’ stadium is turned into a snow-tubing park.

The weather here is very dry and windy.  We are in a drought right now.  It gets very hot in the summer–over 100 degrees–and cold in the winter, but we don’t get as much snow as you do in Pennsylvania.  I have only lived here for a few months and I haven’t seen any tornados yet (which is fine with me!), but every Saturday at noon the city tests the tornado warning siren for two minutes to make sure it is working.  It is very loud–no matter where you are in the city you can hear it.

OKC has many museums and parks.  One interesting museum is the American Banjo museum, which has hundreds of very beautiful banjos.  My favorite park is called the Myriad Gardens, which was designed by some famous architects named I.M. Pei and James Rossant.

One of my favorite things about Oklahoma is old Route 66, a highway that goes through the state and through OKC.  Route 66 was one of the first interstate highways–it was opened in 1926 and ran from Chicago to Los Angeles.  Many, many people drove Route 66 west in the first half of the 20th century.  Nowadays, it has been replaced by bigger highways as the main route west, but many restaurants and attractions remain along the old route and it’s a nice road to drive or ride your bike on and see interesting things.

I hope that you enjoyed learning a little bit about Oklahoma City.  Good luck with your project!

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