Leading Ladies Award winners announced, to be presented at Expo on Oct. 12

The result are in – seven local women are considered Leading Ladies.

Seven Claremore women have been recognized as a winner for the 3rd annual Leading Ladies Awards and will be presented with a special plaque and custom Rustic Cuff at the Leading Ladies Expo on Oct. 12.

The Leading Ladies Expo is hosted from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Claremore Conference Center at 1400 Country Club Drive. It features shopping, massages, hors d’oeuvres from local restaurants, wine samples, a health seminar by presenting sponsor Hillcrest Hospital, a selfie station, hand massages and a lot of great door prizes in addition to the awards.

“We were blown away with the number of women nominated for the seven categories this year,” said Jessica Jackson, director of Claremore Main Street, one of the event’s hosts. “We are excited to get the opportunity to announce the winners in advance this year. These awards, which honor the deserving Rogers County women, are my favorite part about this event.”

Winners were selected by an out-of-county panel. The winners are:

  • Rising Star – Caitlyn Campbell, RSU Student and Volunteers for Youth volunteer
  • Behind the Scenes – Kim Prock, Thrift Harbor District Manager
  • Business Leadership – Sarah Fiegener, Rye Design Owner and Musician’s Haven Director
  • Community Supporter – Cindy Bissett, Claremore Main Street retired Director and volunteer, Chamber of Commerce volunteer
  • Leader in Health – Dava Baldridge, Chief Nursing Officer at Hillcrest Claremore
  • Nonprofit Leadership – Lisa Saylor, Mercy Chefs Managing Chef
  • Leading Lady of the Year – Jill Ferenc, City Planner

The awards will be presented at 7:45 p.m. by KOTV News on 6’s LeAnne Taylor, a local news anchor and breast cancer survivor. The winners were announced live on the Facebook event on Sept. 28.

Advance tickets are on sale now at the Claremore Chamber of Commerce, 419 W. Will Rogers Blvd., and at Carol’s Place Hair and Nail Salon, 774 ½ S. Lynn Riggs Blvd. Tickets will also be sold at the door.

General admission tickets are $10 and include hors d’oeuvres, shopping, the health seminar, most door prizes and standing-room only for the Leading Ladies Awards. VIP tickets are $25 and include a special door prize and a seat at a table for easier eating and more comfortable viewing of the awards ceremony.

Corporate tables are available in advance only for $250.

In addition nearly 10 of local restaurants and eateries offering small portions for tasting, there will be about 20 exhibitors for shopping, information and giveaways.

A selfie station will provide a way to capture all the fun with gal pals. Northeast Tech Cosmetology Students will have free hand massages all night long, and Dr. Lacy Crissup will be doing free eye health screenings as well.

At 6 p.m., the Ask the Experts by Hillcrest and Utica Park Clinic will feature “Healthy Joints: Nutrition, Exercise and Treatment” by Mary Ferraro, Orthopedic Nurse Practitioner, APRN-CNP, and Brooke McIntyre, Clinical Dietitian. The seminar will last about one hour.

Door prizes will be given out periodically through night to attendees. Everyone with an admission ticket can enter to win. Grand Prize Drawings will be done at 8:45 p.m., and guests must be present to win.

Smaller door prizes include local gift cards, accessories and Rustic Cuffs, while bigger prizes are experience based. Larger prizes include a wine-and-painting night at Studio B Artworks for 10 friends, a night stay at the River Spirit Casino, a night for seven friends at The Escape Tulsa, a professional photoshoot and a full makeover by Carol’s Place.

The VIP ticket holders will be entered all the prize drawings as well as a special drawing just for the VIPs. The prize is a Nutcracker Date Night – tickets and dinner for two.

There will also be a special door prize for attendees of the Ask the Experts seminar, and Hillcrest Hospital is also giving out a designer purse in a drawing of those who visit their booth.

Door prizes are made possible by Ladies Loot sponsors Speedy Lube, Dr. Melinda Steelmon and Stephanie Ross, Solid Rock Realtors, Morgan Vanover & US Mortgage.

Hillcrest Hospital will provide a golf cart to escort guests from their parking spot to the event door.

Major sponsors of this year’s event are A&B Bail Bonds, Autumn Wood, BancFirst, Carol’s Place Hair & Nail Salon, Northeast Tech, The Pink House, RCB Bank, Tulsa Federal Credit Union and Wallace for Life. Media partner is Values Magazine.

The event is hosted by the Claremore Area Chamber of Commerce and Claremore Main Street, nonprofit organizations designed to better improve the quality of life in Rogers County and enhance business success in the area.

For additional information about the show or to register as a vendor, please call the Claremore Chamber of Commerce at (918) 341-2818 or Main Street at (918) 341-5881.

10th annual Dickens of a Ride to be bigger than ever

With just weeks to go before the 10th annual Dickens of a Ride, the family-friendly ride is proving to be a popular as ever.

The ride, kicking off at 8 a.m. Oct. 7 from Gazebo Park in downtown Claremore, is perfect for riders of all ages and skill levels. There are seven distances ranging from seven to 100 miles.

Register now!

“We’ve had riders from seven years old up to late 70s,” said Jessica Jackson, Claremore Main Street Executive Director. “It’s truly a ride for everyone.”

The Lazy Lake Loop is perfect for families. Other distances include 18, 30, 50, 62, 76 and 100-mile routes.

Registration for all distances is $30. Riders can register online prior to the event or in person during packet pickup/registration. Packet pickup/registration is Oct. 5 from 5-7 p.m. at Bike-About Bicycles, 300 W. Will Rogers Blvd., or ride morning beginning at 6 a.m. at Gazebo Park.

Pre-order of the long-sleeve t-shirt sales ended Sept. 1, but additional shirts will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis at packet pickup for $20.

The ride includes well-supplied rest stops and SAG and mechanical support through 5 p.m. as well as a map with instructions.

“The rest stops are one of the riders favorites parts about Dickens of a Ride,” Jackson said. “In addition to friendly volunteers, they’re complete with homemade baked goods and quirky road-side photo ops.”

The available routes, depending on the distance chosen by the rider, will take you through the scenic country side west of Claremore, through Oologah, then to the Claremore Lake area.

The longer routes will continue east of Claremore through rolling hillsides then back into Claremore from the East, ending the ride back at the start, downtown Claremore’s Gazebo Park.

More than 30 door prizes will be given out randomly to riders. Once returning, riders should visit the registration table at the finish line to see if they won and to claim their prize.

Riders will receive a goodie bag with discounts to local stores, handy information about Claremore and giveaways at packet pickup.

Boom-a-Rang Diner will provide a $3.99 rider breakfast special before the ride on Oct. 7.

The event is made possible thanks to a number of sponsors, especially Major Sponsor Bike-About Bicycles.

Supporting Sponsors are Play 2 Win, Kevin Fortna CPA, McDonald’s and Boom-a-Rang Diner. Rest Stop Sponsors include Boy Scouts, RSU Softball. The finish line, sponsored by RCB Bank.

Proceeds from the ride benefit Claremore Main Street, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the revitalization of the downtown district and reigniting the area as the social core of our community.

For more information or to register, find us online here. The official ride hashtag is #DickensRide2017.

Fall Festival brings scarecrows, food trucks to Claremore

PHOTO CREDIT: Levi Green, IFLY 107 Drone Photography

September signals the beginning of fall for many, and Claremore will be celebrating with a Downtown Fall Festival during Food Truck Thursday on Sept. 28.

The monthly event features food, live music, shopping and fun for all ages from 6-9 p.m. In September, more than 15 food trucks will line the streets while attendees can enjoy live music from Brent Giddens Band, do some late-night shopping and bid on a custom one-of-a-kind scarecrow to take home.

Additionally, there will be a free Kids Zone by Cedar Point Church, a dunk tank that benefits the Claremore High School Band, produce from the Claremore Farmers Market and beer from the Main Street Tavern.

Food Truck Thursday is always free and open to the public, but food and some activities do cost extra.

“Fall is my favorite time of the year, so I’m extra excited about this month’s Food Truck Thursday,” said Jessica Jackson, executive director of Claremore Main Street. “We’re also thrilled to partner with Studio B Artworks to host the first scarecrow contest and auction.”

Twenty-five local businesses signed up to participate in the contest, creating special, one-of-a-kind scarecrows. People are asked to vote for their favorites online with a “like” on the photos Studio B’s Facebook page’s scarecrow gallery. The Top 10 will be in a live auction at 7:30 p.m. at the stage in the 500 block. [SEE GALLERY]

The remainder will be in a silent auction between 6-8:15 p.m. that night. Winners must pick up and pay for their scarecrow on the night of the auction.

A portion of the proceeds will go to benefit Studio B’s programming to bring a love and appreciation of art to Claremore and Rogers County youth. The remainder will go to a downtown art project.

“The scarecrow auction is a fun addition to our event this month,” said Kathy Glover, Food Truck Thursday committee chairwoman and owner of the Cozy Cottage, 514 W. Will Rogers Blvd. “We’ve had a great time creating these scarecrows for Claremore to enjoy!”

The Kids Zone by Cedar Point Church is completely free to attendees, but parents are asked to watch their children while they enjoy the games and fun activities. There will be a bounce house, tic-tac-toe and bowling with pumpkins, corn toss, a photo area and free popcorn balls and juice.

The Kids Zone has moved to the 500 block at the corner of Missouri Avenue and Will Rogers Boulevard to make room for more food trucks down the center of the street.

Food trucks include Alpha Grill Food Truck​The Bacon Food TruckCurbside Comfort, ​C&J ConcessionsDorothy’s WichesHoops Philly TruckJen’s Java, ​Kona IceLa Hermosa Taco Truck, Maw & Paw Kettle Corn, Moose Trax, ​My Baby Can CookPie in the SkyPolickers, Purple People FeedersRopin Flamingo Italian Ice and Taqueria El Jarocho.

Food Truck Thursday will run monthly on the final Thursday of the month. The final one will be October 26.

The monthly event is hosted by the Downtown Claremore Merchants Association and Claremore Main Street, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the revitalization of the downtown district and reigniting the area as the social core of our community.

Food vendors interested in participating anytime this season should e-mail Jeannie Smith at while nonfood vendors who would like to set up a booth should email Sheila Giannelli at . Space is extremely limited.

For more information, visit our website or join the Facebook event.

Downtown Claremore gives back to local schools

A month-long school supply drive by downtown Claremore merchants led to additional school supplies in the classroom for three local schools.

The Downtown Claremore Merchant’s Association hosted a school supply drive through the month of August, culminating at Food Truck Thursday Downtown School Daze on Aug. 31.

Shoppers were urged to donated school supplies to Claremore, Verdigris or Sequoyah schools, placing a donation in one of the three labeled boxes in each of the participating businesses. Many stores offered discounts to shoppers who donated.

Each school received an 18×18 box full of school supplies for classrooms or families who needed the help the most. Sheila Giannelli, president of the association and owner of Vintique Charm, delivered them.

“The schools were appreciative of the donations and were happy that we cared enough to host a month-long event to benefit the local schools,” Giannelli said.

Additionally, Food Truck Thursday Downtown School Daze included a dunk tank featuring elementary school principals and teachers. Fifty percent of the proceeds were donated back to the participating schools – Catalayah, Westside, Roosa, Claremont and Sequoyah – divided evenly into $50 per school.

The Downtown Claremore Merchants Association was established to unite the business professionals downtown to improve relations and support economic growth of downtown Claremore.

Claremore Main Street launches new website

Claremore Main Street went live with a new website on Monday that makes finding information about downtown Claremore’s shops, events and organizational details easier.

Maintaining the URL of downtownclaremore.org, the new site’s enhanced design and flow serves customers and businesses better than ever. Additionally, it’s completely mobile-friendly.

“We are really excited about the website launch,” said Jessica Jackson, director of Claremore Main Street. “Through the site, we can show off everything that is important to Main Street – our businesses, events and organization’s impact and value – in one easy place.”

The website features all of Claremore Main Street’s major events, listings for retail and dining in the area and a complete list of downtown news releases.

Access to nearly all that information is available on the front page alone, but the site has a five-item menu for additional navigation.

The front page also showcases Main Street’s reinvestment figures on dollars spent revitalizing downtown, number of businesses and jobs created and volunteer hours donated since the 501(c)3 nonprofit organization was established in 2002.

New on the site is a calendar that includes details on activities like Cash Mob, application deadlines and holiday office closings. It will provide another place for partner businesses to house their events as well.

Those interested in volunteering can now fill out a simple volunteer application form, stating contact information and areas of interest.

Nearly brand new is an entire “Who Are We” section, which houses information about Claremore Main Street, a list of members of the Board of Directors as well as agenda and minutes, details on Member Services available to downtown businesses and partners and a page with information on meeting spaces, residential lofts and available properties.

The site was built by Columba Collaborative, a Claremore-based website design and content marketing business. Columba Collaborative is a Main Street Partner.

“Katie Sauvageau at Columba Collaborative has been wonderful to work with,” Jackson said. “She took our vision and developed a dynamic site that’s both functional and attractive. We couldn’t be happier with the outcome.”

Claremore Main Street is dedicated to its mission to enrich downtown Claremore by promoting a healthy downtown economy and advocating for revitalization and historic preservation.

Downtown Façade Grant applications due Sept. 30

Claremore Main Street’s Façade Grant Program will be helping improve the look of downtown one building at a time.

The program, which the nonprofit announced in April, has quarterly deadlines so building owners in the downtown district are able to apply when it is most convenient for them. The next deadline is Sept. 30.

“We’ve been really happy with the projects we’ve received so far in the program,” said Jessica Jackson, director of Claremore Main Street. “It looks like there’s a lot of great ideas out there, and we’re excited to continue to be a part of the revitalization downtown.”

The program, which matches the investment made on the exterior of downtown properties dollar-for-dollar, consists of $1,000 matching grants.

Applications must be completed in full, including a detailed description of the project, bids or quotes and photos, and be turned in by the deadline. Applications will be reviewed and applicants will be notified by mid-October.

“The grants are designed to help a downtown property owner enhance their building and increase the property value while preserving the building’s historic character,” Jackson said. “The grant provides a financial incentive for rehabilitation.”

Eligible improvements include masonry work, window and door repair or replacement, some exterior painting and repair of some awnings, exterior lighting and signage and removal of non-historic materials.

Applications will be given priority if they prove high visual impact, historic or architectural integrity, lasting improvements and are on an active street front.

Projects must be completed within six months of the award notification. Applicants must be in the current Claremore Main Street boundaries.

Previous grantees include Carol Thibodeau at Rhapsody Boutique & Spa, who will be adding an awning to her building at 318 W. Will Rogers Blvd. The Main Street Façade Squad and the Thibodeau family removed the non-historic awning from the property in 2016.

Claremore Main Street is dedicated to its mission to enrich downtown Claremore by promoting a healthy downtown economy and advocating for revitalization and historic preservation. It is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that was established in 2002.

For more information, call Jackson at 918-341-5881 or email .

Download the application.

Downtown Claremore participates in Fresh Paint Days

One downtown Claremore business will get a fresh coat of paint thanks to Claremore Main Street volunteers and Keep Oklahoma Beautiful’s Fresh Paint Days grant.

Volunteers will gather on Tuesday (Sept. 19) evening to paint part of the interior of The Cranberry Merchant, 417 W. Will Rogers Blvd. The building is more than 100 years old.

“I’m really excited The Cranberry Merchant was chosen for Fresh Paint Days,” said Chelsea Mize, owner of the antique store. “The supplies and the volunteers will help us spruce up our building.”

The “Paint Party” will begin at 4 p.m. and will go through 9 p.m. Supplies and dinner will be provided to volunteers, whether they’re able to give just an hour or stay for the duration. All are welcome.

“I’m excited to get right down to the nitty gritty and help one of our businesses make this improvement,” said Jessica Jackson, director of Claremore Main Street. “We hope to see a lot of volunteers come out and show their support of downtown with a little sweat equity.”

The volunteer painters will be replacing green and maroon paint inside with recycled, almond-colored H-I-S paint provided by the grant.

Fresh Paint Days is a program founded on the collaboration between H-I-S Paint and Keep Oklahoma Beautiful. KOB, with the help of sponsors, provides the paint and a stipend for supplies; selected communities supply the volunteers. This program has helped to revitalize communities across Oklahoma with a fresh coat of paint.

Claremore Main Street and the Cranberry Merchant are among 47 participating groups working on the 66 chosen projects across the state.

H-I-S Paint and Keep Oklahoma Beautiful started the Fresh Paint Days program in 2005.

“H-I-S Paint is proud to have participated for the past 10 years in the Fresh Paint Days in Oklahoma initiative, and we are eager to see the transformations for 2017,” said Joe Cox, founder and CEO of H-I-S Paint. “We know that each gallon of paint that we donate helps to Keep Oklahoma Beautiful by transforming communities one building at a time.”

Natalie Evans, the projects coordinator for KOB, works with potential participants throughout the application process.

“I am consistently amazed by the vision these groups have for brighter, more beautiful communities,” Evans said. “These participants were chosen because of that vision, and we are excited to support them as they endeavor to revitalize their communities. Fresh Paint Days truly is a great opportunity for these groups to reinstate community pride.”

Claremore Main Street is dedicated to its mission to enrich downtown Claremore by promoting a healthy downtown economy and advocating for revitalization and historic preservation. It is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that was established in 2002.

For more information, call Jackson at 918-341-5881 or email .

Claremore’s Cash Mob aids Wagoner-Switch District disaster

Chelsea Mize (left), owner of Cranberry Merchant, and Sheila Giannelli, owner of Vintique Charm pose with their checks that were mailed to the Wagoner Switch District last month.

A group of more than 50 people gathered last month to participate in a special Cash Mob that went to two downtown Claremore stores and donated money to disaster relief at the Wagoner Switch District.

Cash Mob is bimonthly shopping ‘mob’ where participants gather and then, as a group, “mob” a downtown store chosen at random, spending $20 in that store. Hundreds of dollars are pumped into the local economy in 45 minutes.

The mob also benefits a local nonprofit, voted on by the attendees. In August, however, in the wake of the terrible fire that decimated much of the downtown of another Main Street community – the Wagoner Switch District – store owners decided to donate instead to downtown Wagoner.

“As a fourth generation Claremore resident and owner of a historic downtown building, I know how much my building means to me, my vendors and my community,” said Chelsea Mize, owner of Cranberry Merchant, one of the stores ‘mobbed.’ “I can only try to imagine the extent of the devastation from the fire in Wagoner.”

“I hope that the little funding we were able to send to Wagoner will help ease the pain ever so slightly,” she added.

The Oklahoma Main Street Center was in Claremore that week for a statewide conference of about 50 people and many conference attendees joined the mob to show support of downtown Claremore businesses and downtown Wagoner relief.

Because there were so many ‘mobbers,’ two stores were chosen. Attendees were either sent to the Cranberry Merchant, 417 W. Will Rogers Blvd., or Vintique Charm, 512 W. Will Rogers Blvd. Many shopped at both stores.

A total of $1,700 was spent downtown in an hour and a half. A portion of that was donated to Wagoner.

“We are thankful to be chosen for Cash Mob,” said Sheila Giannelli, owner of Vintique Charm. “It is a great opportunity to expose more people to our businesses downtown while donating to someone in need.”

The next Cash Mob is scheduled for Oct. 3 at 5:30 p.m. To participate in Cash Mob in the future, please email Main Street at .