Happy Birthday Lawton!

Lawton_The City of Lawton is bringing a bigger celebration than ever before.  It's because it's turning 106 this weekend and it's the city's centennial celebration, too.  This is the first year that the parade and birthday celebration will take place at Elmer Thomas Park

Don Thompson, the parade chairman and a Lawton Ranger didn't seem to be worried about the new location change for this year.  "I think it should improve attendance," he said.  "A lot of it will come from the curiosity of people just wanting to see how much better a parade can be at Elmer Thomas Park instead of the downtown area."

Thompson says that this will allow the downtown businesses to enjoy all their shoppers with this week's big tax free weekend.  The Lawton Rangers are the official riding club for centennial statehood events.

Be sure and head down to Elmer Thomas Park for the parade, concert and fireworks.  And, don't forget your bug spray and sunscreen.

You can find the schedule for the celebration below and by following this link Celebration with Community SALUTE TO STATE CENTENNIAL.

The City of Lawton, the Lawton Heritage Association, the State's Centennial Riding Club - Lawton Rangers, and the Pioneer Club has joined forces in planning the "Lawton-Ft.Sill 106th Birthday Celebration with a Community Salute to the State's Centennial"!

The kick off for this community event begins Friday, August 3rd, 6:30 pm at the historic Mattie Beal Mansion located at 5th and Summit.  Free and open to the public, a living history performance of "Mattie's Place", an one-act play written by Dr. James Brock will be presented.  Also performing will be the Lawton Pro Musica professional choral group. This historical re-enactment takes place on the front porch where Mattie and her husband Charles talk to several of their distinguished guests about the past, present, and future of the state.  The cast includes Teresa Jensen as Mattie Beal, Neil West as CW Payne, and Melissa Horn as Florence Taylor, one of Mattie's friends.  Another performance will take place Saturday, August 4th at 2 pm. Following each performance, the public may take a self-guided tour of the home at no charge. For these two events, additional parking is available across the street at the old Southwestern Hospital parking lot courtesy of KCA Intertribal Land Use Committee and Dr. Gregory Morton III.   Visit www.lawtonheritage.org or call 580-678-3156.

After Saturday's August 4th performance at the Mattie Beal Home, the public is invited to gather at Elmer Thomas Park where the City of Lawton, the 77th Army Band, the Lawton Rangers, and the Pioneer Club have planned a parade, food, concert, and fireworks.  Please note that due to the parade, the public wishing to use the new Elmer Thomas parking lots should be in the park by 4:00 pm.  The park will be closed to public parking and park street access during the parade from 4:30 - 6:30 pm.  Other street closings include Ferris Avenue from 10th Street to 2nd Street from 4:30 - 6:30 pm.

The event will begin with the Lawton Rangers Centennial Parade at 5:00 pm.  The parade route will start at Lawton High School and proceed east on Ferris Avenue then enter into the park at 3rd Street.  While waiting for the parade, visit the various vendors selling snow cones and various other summertime treats. Free Hot Dogs will be served starting at 6 pm until they are gone (first come, first served).

After the parade, at the park's new amphitheatre, the 77th Army band, who also celebrates their own centennial this year, will perform a very special concert.  A fireworks display will follow.

This event is almost like we did it 100 years ago but just a wee bit bigger!!  Suggested items to bring with you are picnic blankets, lawn chairs, water, & snacks.  Family fun for everyone, however please leave pets at home, working animals only. Other items to leave at home are alcohol beverages and personal firework.

Call the Arts & Humanities Division at 580-581-3470 or 581-3471 for more information.

Pioneer Club of Lawton Event

August 6, 10 am at the Little Chapel located at 719 SW D Ave. the club will hold a memorial service for members who have pass on this year. The following ladies will be honored during the service:  Jo Williamson, Sylvia Odegarrd, & Willa Dean Johnson.  Contact the Pioneer Club of Lawton at 353-8139 or 357-0806 for more information.

Lawton Rangers Rodeo - An Official State Centennial Event

 Don't forget the Lawton Rangers Rodeo the following week beginning August 8th  through the 11th. This is also an official state centennial project by the Lawton Rangers, the official state riding club!  SLACK performances are set for 8:00 am Thursday & Friday Morning, free admission.  Tickets for the rodeo are $10 for advance tickets and $12 at the gate. Children under 6 yrs get in free.  At 7:30 pm each evening, see the largest grand entry in Texhoma.  Then at 8pm, the Lawton Ranger's PRCA Rodeo begins where you will see some of the top ranked cowboys on the PRCA!

This year highlights include:

Thursday, August 9th, everyone is invited to wear pink for the "Tough Enough to Wear Pink" fundraiser. The purpose of this event is to raise awareness and funds for the fight against breast cancer!  The official "Tough Enough to Wear Pink" web site is www.toughenoughtowearpink.com

Friday, August 10 & Saturday, August 11, a rodeo dance follows the last competition.

Event web site: www.lawtonrangers.org, call 580-512-0054 or 351-0475 for more information.