If there’s one thing I go hard for, it’s celebrating Black History Month and amplifying the Black-owned businesses and events in the metro. So throughout the month of February (and year round), dig into these Black- and locally-owned gems throughout OKC.
Northeast Oklahoma City is full of rich history, resiliency and community. It's also home to many Black-owned restaurants. James Beard award winning restaurant Florence’s is where you'll find made-to-order, feel good in your soul kind of food. At the start of the pandemic, my family ordered their holiday meal and after the first bite, my spouse said, “I feel healed.” Eastside Pizza House, another East End spot, is an innovative and flavorful pizza joint that has the most Instagrammable interior. They are neighbors to Spiked Coffee and Scrambl’d. Both Black-owned and delicious. Finally, I would be remiss if I didn’t include Ice Event Center for their exceptional fried catfish, the legendary Leo’s BBQ and Bobo’s when discussing the beautiful Eastside. The culture is thick in NEOKC, and you don’t have to look hard to find it.
In downtown OKC, you’ll find some more exceptional Black-owned restaurants. It’s always a special occasion to visit any of Chef Black’s establishments. Grey Sweater and Black Walnut occupy the adjacent corner of historically Black cultural hub of Deep Deuce, while Gilded Acorn is nestled in the heart of downtown. Word on the street is that Chef Black, also a James Beard award winning chef, has another upscale concept in the works. This one will also be in downtown OKC in the Skirvin Hotel.
Throughout the metro, Black-owned businesses are making way for Oklahoma to be on the map in virtually every category.
Locally-owned Kinfolk Farms offers clean eats and farm fresh products. Their storefront in the Wheeler District offers pantry staples as well as meal prepped dishes.
If luxury spa experiences and skin care is your vibe, Lenox Skincare is a prime location for services, gift cards and your new skincare routine literally made and formulated by a Black woman.
Plant People Shop is turning us all into certified plant parents! Christina offers handmade planters, terrarium building workshops, plant-care books, and stunning common and rare houseplants, succulents, cacti and so much more.
Black History Month Events
Celebrate Black History Month at one of these events throughout the month of February in Oklahoma City.
Experience the Descendants of the Black 1000, occurring now through April 1, 2024, at the Mary LeFlore Clements Oklahoma Gallery. The exhibit features photographs, archival material and audio recordings, which tell the story of Oklahoma’s Black communities' historical movement to Canada to seek refuge.
Visit the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum to interact with the Bill Picket Heritage Table and grab a steer activity to take home with you! Learn more about this African-American cowboy in the American Rodeo Gallery at The Cowboy.
Join the Oklahoma City Thunder in celebrating Black History Month with some lively competition and a whole lot of creativity. Ninth through 12th grade students can now submit their original artwork expressing an aspect of Black history that inspires them. Four winners will be selected and recognized during the game on Feb. 27 against Houston.
Foodies will love celebrating Black History Month with a friendly game of Black Restaurant Bingo! Participants can download the restaurant bingo card containing foodie squares and 1 freebie square situated on a 4 by 4 grid. Presented by the Oklahoma City Thunder, this is the perfect way to celebrate Black-owned restaurants during the month of February.
Throughout the month of February and beyond, I encourage you to actively explore and support Black-owned events, businesses, restaurants and shops, acknowledging and appreciating the community’s contributions to the culture, the economy, and community at large of OKC. Happy Black History Month!