Experiencing the First Americans Museum as a Family - MetroFamily Magazine
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Experiencing the First Americans Museum as a Family

by Simi John

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Summer vacations are all about creating memories and experiences, but that doesn’t mean you have to take a long stressful family road trip or spend tons of money. I love that Oklahoma City has so many things to enrich and entertain families nowadays. One of those new attractions is the First Americans Museum (FAM) that is located conveniently right across from downtown.

I didn’t grow up in Oklahoma, so it was especially fascinating to learn about the rich history of the First Americans and how these 39 distinct tribal nations that reside in Oklahoma are so diverse.

I was blown away by the beautiful architecture of the building itself. The museum contains collections of images, artifacts, videos and art work to display the past and present stories of the First Americans. It was truly so informative. They offer guided tours at 1 p.m. daily. The curators did a great job making the information engaging for all ages making the experience interactive by giving you opportunities to read, listen, watch and observe.

My kids loved sitting in the “van” and by the “fire” as they learned about the unique culture and lived experiences of tribal nations.  They also loved the virtual activities that were set up to teach them about the fun games and sports that were part of the lives of these ancient tribes.

My husband and I loved how immersive the whole experience was, especially the video testimonies of people who remember how their ancestors lived through the Trail of Tears. I have been to many museums in my life, but FAM is different. It is powerful and moving. As you see and hear stories of the First Americans plight, their struggle and their strength not only will you leave with a deep respect for them, it will also leave you inspired.

Then we stopped at THIRTY NINE for lunch. I admit, it was hard to choose something from the menu because everything looked amazing. We got the bison burger which was delicious and I especially enjoyed the pickled squash. We discussed the things that we saw and learned at the museum. We were able to have conversations about our own culture and the importance of passing on our traditions and language.

Then we headed to make a post card, to share one thing we learned with a friend and invite them to experience FAM.  Of course, we had to scope out the gift shop before we hit the road and grab a photo too!

Often our vacations are about us doing fun things and sharing laughs but I think we can engage our kids in a deeper way when we learn together. This visit to FAM taught me that our kids not only love experiences where they laugh and play but they also crave those experiences which expand their knowledge and enrich their worldview. So if you haven’t yet been, I want to invite you to one of my favorites,  First Americans Museum and it is right here in our own city. You can check out their website and Facebook page for more details and special deals.

Simi John is married to her best friend and they pastor New Life Bible Church in Norman. They have two kids and love exploring OKC. Simi is a speaker and author. You can find her book: “I Am Not: Break Free From Stereotypes & Become The Woman God Made You To Be” on Amazon. Connect with Simi on Instagram @simijohn.

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