Kaleidoscope Children's Museum transports kids into a pint-size world, touting 13,000 square feet of hands-on exhibits that ignite the imagination. Wee ones rule in Kid's City, a microcosm of society with a café, grocery store, barbershop, doctor's office, post office, and a miniature jail for locking up pinky-swear violators. Two rock walls soar 20 and 22 feet into the air, beckoning aspiring spider monkeys to scale their faces, and a multilevel play structure with two slides entertains playground explorers. Tykes can rock out on stage or solve a who-dun-it in Kaleidoscope's detective mystery lab. Snoezellen, a multisensory black-light room, appeals to little ones' five senses with glow-in-the dark toys, Van de Graaff static-electricity spheres, and oxygen-flavored air.
The QuikTrip Air and Rocket Racing Show lets you both experience aviation history and catch a glimpse into the future of flight. The event schedule offers flylights such as aerobatic performances, wing walkers, military demonstrations, and an extraordinary flyover by a B-2 Spirit Stealth Bomber. The air show will also exhibit the Rocket Racing League. Dubbed "NASCAR with rockets," the league features rocket-propelled X-Racers that produce up to 2,500 pounds of thrust, emit 10–15-foot-long flames, and produce roaring echoes heard miles away as they compete in ground-breaking sky races. Whether you are Howard Hughes or a grounded goon, the QuikTrip Air and Rocket Racing Show is an exciting location to be awestricken by adventurous aviators performing amazing aerials.
The building that houses the Tulsa Historical Society & Museum doesn't just contain historical artifacts—it's a piece of history itself. Built in 1919 by Sam and Julie Travis during the prosperous years of Tulsa's second oil boom, the mansion sits on 28,000 square feet of manicured landscape that now houses a Vintage Garden brimming with architectural artifacts and bronze sculptures.
Of course, this is just part of the history museum's draw. In the years since its 1963 founding, the Tulsa Historical Society & Museum has amassed a collection of more than 50,000 photographs, 10,000 books and manuscripts, and 6,000 other objects that bear the essence of Tulsa or Oklahoma history, ranging from furniture and fine art to military uniforms and civilian clothing. Curators pull from this ever-growing collection to create themed exhibitions in the museum's eight separate galleries. Every exhibition changes at least once a year, giving repeat visitors a chance to make new discoveries about subjects such as Tulsa life in the Great Depression, the Tulsa Race Riot, and the history of Tulsa baseball.
Jack Spears and his sons David and Austin want people to love the Illinois River as much as they do, so they placed their resort's expansive camping, RV, and cabin grounds on the bank in positions that allow boarders to appreciate the scenery year-round. In the summer, their General Store's ice-cream fountain pours nonstop as river-goers take a rest in the shop's shade. The resort boasts year-round security to preserve campers' gear and scare off loitering snowmen in the winter. The staff also doles out dry goods, supplies, and groceries to campers or families staying in the manors of Pine Valley Retreat throughout the year.
As a basket drifts against the twilight, the only sound one can hear is a burner whispering to invisible gas, commanding it to push the carriage higher into the evening sky. At Go Hot Air Ballooning, flights stay close enough to the ground to witness deer wandering the earth, and each excursion—from private rides to tethered convoys—takes off with passengers' well-being in mind. An FAA-licensed pilot with more than 20 years of ballooning experience—and a perfect safety record—takes the helm of each flight, personally confirming each reservation and watching up-to-date weather reports to ensure safe flight conditions. Though the in-air portion lasts only an hour, most journeys take up to four hours in all, allowing passengers to witness such behind-the-scenes action as the pilot inflating the entire balloon with his lungs.
Since its founding in 2005, the 12-acre park has taken in more than 200 active animals from private owners and zoos with limited vacancy. The grounds permeate an aura of familiar and familial care, as all staffers lend their time and knowledge on a volunteer basis. During a single safari jaunt, guests can get acquainted with a range of amphibians, birds, mammals, and reptiles—specific beasts include kangaroos, marmosets, and Amazon parrots. A select group of creatures are also available for high hoof-fiving and fur comparing at the petting zoo. Likewise, because today's Groupon includes four feeding treat packs, all attending guests can shower their most beloved little friends with sweet, sweet non-candycane sustenance.