Culture of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma

Broken Arrow, located in northeastern Oklahoma, is a vibrant suburb of Tulsa with a population of over 110,000 residents. While keeping its own unique small-town charm and community feel, Broken Arrow offers plentiful cultural activities, entertainment options, and events for people of all ages and interests.

Museums and Cultural Institutions

Broken Arrow has several museums and cultural sites that allow visitors to learn about the city’s Native American heritage, pioneer history, and more.

Culture Of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma

Rose District and Historical Museum

The Rose District in downtown Broken Arrow is home to several historic buildings from the city’s early days in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The Crown Jewel of the Rose District is the Historical Museum, housed in a historic Santa Fe rail depot. Exhibits chronicle Broken Arrow’s founding and early development with artifacts, photographs, and hands-on displays. Some key highlights include:

  • Native American artifacts from local tribes who lived in the area for centuries
  • Antiques, textiles, furniture, and household objects used by Broken Arrow’s founding families
  • Vintage merchandise from early 20th century businesses along Main Street
  • Oral histories from longtime residents
  • Display on Broken Arrow’s “Rosie the Riveter,” Iris West, who inspired the cultural icon during WWII

Nienhuis Art Gallery

Located in Broken Arrow’s picturesque Central Park, the Nienhuis Art Gallery features rotating fine art exhibits in a range of mediums like painting, sculpture, photography and more by local and regional artists. Mediums include oil, acrylic, watercolor and pastel paintings, glasswork, pottery, and more. The gallery also hosts regular opening receptions, artist talks, classes and workshops.

Mabee-Gerrer Museum of Art

Located on the Oral Roberts University campus in Tulsa, this excellent regional art museum houses Egyptian antiquities, Native American artifacts and Western art plus iconic 20th century American paintings. Highlights include a Gutenberg Bible page, and works by Gilbert Stuart, George Catlin, Robert Henri, and Andy Warhol.

Performing Arts

From musicals to magic shows and everything between, Broken Arrow has a diverse performing arts scene sure to entertain all tastes.

Broken Arrow Community Playhouse

Founded in the 1960s, the playhouse is one of Oklahoma’s longest running community theaters. It puts on over 10 productions every year ranging from family-friendly musicals like “Annie” to thought-provoking dramas and comedies.

Spotlight Theater

Broken Arrow’s Spotlight Theater offers fun musicals, hilarious comedies and crowd-pleasing shows the whole family can enjoy. Recent productions include hits like “The Wizard of Oz,” “The Addams Family Musical” and “Elf – The Musical.”

Broken Arrow PAC

The Broken Arrow Performing Arts Center (PAC) brings nationally touring productions of Broadway musicals, special concerts, dance performances, comedians and other acts to its modern 1,500 seat theater. Some past shows include “The Sound of Music,” Blue Man Group and even magician David Copperfield. The PAC also hosts an annual Performing Arts series featuring acts like the Glenn Miller Orchestra and classical Russian ballet.

Music and Concerts

For live music, the Rose District features cozy venues hosting regular concerts spanning genres like rock, folk, jazz and blues. The city also hosts various outdoor concerts in parks over spring and summer, usually offering free admission so all can enjoy.

Festivals and Annual Events

Broken Arrow celebrates its pioneer farming heritage and modern diversity with various annual festivals and events open to everyone.

Rooster Days Festival

Broken Arrow’s biggest community festival started in the 1940s as a celebration of the city’s agricultural roots with mule and horse parades down Main Street. The first festival featured legendary cowboy humorist Will Rogers. Today the event spans 5 days in June with live music, dancing, contests, carnival rides and lots of family-friendly fun.

International Festival

Reflecting the city’s growing diversity, Broken Arrow’s International Festival celebrates cultures and cuisines from around the world. Held each September, highlights include world music and dance performances, ethnic food vendors, crafts bazaar and children’s activities like an interactive passport tour and global costume contest.

Holiday Events

Broken Arrow celebrates every holiday in style with special events like a Christmas Parade, 4th of July Fireworks display, Halloween Haunted House, and much more.

Some key holiday happenings include:

  • Independence Day Parade and Fireworks Show
  • Haunt the Park Halloween attraction
  • Annual Veterans Day Parade
  • Christmas in the Park with Santa’s Village, holiday light displays and seasonal festivities
  • New Year’s Eve family-friendly street party

Places for Family Fun

From exciting recreational attractions to nature parks and playgrounds galore, Broken Arrow offers many family-friendly things to do all year round.

Outdoor Activities

  • Haikey Creek Park – Hiking and biking trails, fishing pond, 18-hole disc golf course and more all set on 100 scenic acres. Hosts outdoor concert series in summer.
  • Nienhuis Park and Trails – 30 mile network of paved trails ideal for walking, running and cycling across rolling hills and along creeks.
  • Broken Arrow Tennis Center – Year round indoor and outdoor tennis courts, pro shop and lessons for all ages and skill levels

Indoor Recreation

  • All-Star Sports Complex – Massive indoor venue with basketball/volleyball courts, batting cages, bowling alley, arcade, laser tag and mini-golf
  • Vertical Entertainment – Indoor rock climbing walls rise over 50 feet tall suited for kids and adults
  • Fast Lanes Entertainment Center – 24 bowling lanes, multi-level laser tag arena, video arcade and fun zone perfect for birthday parties or family nights out

Farms, Parks and Play Spaces

  • Arrowhead Orchard – Pick your own apples, peaches, berries and pumpkins (in fall) at this classic fruit farm
  • Park Lane Park – Inclusive, adaptive playground with sensory elements suitable for children with special needs
  • Splash Pads – Cool off at the city’s interactive water playgrounds open April to October
  • Woodland Valley Park – 65 acres with hiking trails, fishing pond, sports fields, skatepark and shaded picnic areas

Diverse Cuisine

Reflecting Broken Arrow’s cultural mix, the city offers an array of dining options spanning all ethnic palates.

Local Favorites

Some beloved spots serving classic American cuisine include:

  • Kumback Cafe – Vintage diner downtown dishing up hearty comfort food daily
  • Cherokee Steak House and Tiki Bar – Local institution since 1947 renowned for aged steaks and signature rum drinks
  • Anna’s Belgian Waffles – Specializing in sweet and savory Belgian waffles with endless topping combos

Global Flavors

With foreign-born residents hailing from over 70 countries, Broken Arrow’s international dining scene impresses. Some top picks include:

  • New Gong Chinese Restaurant – Serving up authentic Szechuan specialties for over 25 years
  • Taqueria El Patron – Traditional tasty Mexican tacos, enchiladas, burritos and more
  • Shiraz Mediterranean Grill – Persian kebabs, hummus, falafel, kabobs and other Middle Eastern staples
  • Tres Amigos – Festive local favorite for authentic Tex-Mex blended with Mexican cuisine
  • Desi Wok – Award-winning Indian and Himalayan eatery crafting sizzling curries, vindaloos and tandoori dishes

Sweets and Treats

Satisfy your sweet tooth at beloved local dessert shops like:

  • Merritt’s Bakery – Old fashioned scratch bakery whipping up angelic pies, cakes, breads and goodies from family recipes
  • Yum Yum Bake Shop – Custom decorated sugar cookies in endless flavors and frosting designs
  • Sweet Shoppe – Candy store doubling as ice cream parlor with almost 100 rotating homemade flavors

Religious Diversity

As a religiously diverse community, Broken Arrow offers many places of worship spanning various faiths and denominations. Some key houses of worship include:<div style=”overflow-x:auto;”>

Place of WorshipDenomination/ReligionNotable Features
First Baptist Church of Broken ArrowSouthern BaptistStained glass windows, active mission programs
Broken Arrow Church of ChristChurch of ChristDaycare center, community assistance programs
St. John Catholic ChurchRoman CatholicIntricate traditional architecture with outdoor grotto
Islamic Society of TulsaIslam / MuslimEducational programs and interfaith outreach
Hardesty Jewish Chapel and Community CenterJewishOnly dedicated Jewish chapel in the Tulsa metro area
Abiding Harvest Church of GodPentecostalDynamic worship services and community involvement
Thien An Buddhist TempleBuddhismGorgeous pagoda architecture amid serene garden landscapes

Whether you’re new in town or a lifelong resident, Broken Arrow’s welcoming spirit and wealth of cultural attractions offer something for visitors of all backgrounds to enjoy. From pioneer history to global cuisine, performing arts to community celebrations, Broken Arrow’s diverse entertainment, recreation and lifestyle scene make it a dynamic place to call home.


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  • Take Highway 75 South from Tulsa towards Broken Arrow. After about 15 miles, take the OK-51 E exit towards Broken Arrow. Merge onto OK-51 E and drive for approximately 5 miles. Turn right onto S Elm Pl and continue for 0.2 miles. Turn left onto E 73rd St S. The destination will be on your right after about 0.3 miles.
  • From downtown Tulsa, head east on E 11th St towards S 129th E Ave for around 5 miles. Turn right to merge onto US-64 E/E 51st St S and continue for roughly 10 miles. Take the OK-51 E ramp on the left towards Broken Arrow. After about 5 miles, turn right onto S Elm Pl, then left onto E 73rd St S. 22902 E 73rd St S will be on the right after 0.3 miles.
  • Take the Creek Turnpike heading south from Tulsa. After around 15 miles, take exit 27A for OK-51 E towards Broken Arrow. Stay straight on OK-51 E for approximately 4.5 miles then turn right onto S Elm Pl. Make a left turn onto E 73rd St S and go 0.3 miles. The destination 22902 E 73rd St S will be on the right.