This holiday season, downtown Oklahoma City is more festive than ever, with the amazing renovation of the Myriad Gardens, the blossoming retail and entertainment options and the flourishing number of people living and working downtown.
The season also brings some shopping opportunities to the area, in igloos and chalets, of all things. At the Myriad Gardens, an innovative grouping of chalets makes up the Winter Shops at Myriad Gardens. In Midtown, a series of geodesic igloo-shape domes offers another fun and varied shopping opportunity.
The Winter Shops feature 14 locally owned vendors carrying a wide variety of items, from handblown glass by Bella Forte Studios in Edmond to kitschy finds at Calamity Jane's Funk & Junk.
The chalets were patterned after the chalets in Bryant Park in New York City, said Christine Eddington, a Myriad Gardens spokeswoman.
“Those winter shops are phenomenal,” Eddington said. “That's the direction we're trying to head with ours, with unique and interesting things that appeal to a broad demographic.”
Holiday Pop-Up Shops
Last year at the Myriad Gardens, there were no chalets; there, the Holiday Pop-Up Shops debuted. This year, the Pop-Up Shops have relocated to NW 9 and Walker. The shops are designed in the style of igloos — geodesic domes made from pipes, heavy canvas and plastic that are temperature controlled for comfortable shopping.
The Pop-Up Shops change vendors every weekend, with a total of 31 locally owned retailers taking their turns in the igloos.
“I feel like shopping and buying gifts for people should be a warm fuzzy feeling,” said Allison Bailey, coordinator of the shops. “You walk into these little shops, and their owners are in there telling you about the gift, helping you pick something out.”
The shops feature a kids' play area and a live Christmas tree lot, which Bailey said adds a vintage feel to the Pop-Up Shops atmosphere.
Downtown employees have a chance to visit the shops simply by hopping on a shuttle provided by Continental Resources. On Thursdays and Fridays, the shuttle runs every 20 minutes from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Shoppers can arrange for their items to be gift wrapped and delivered to their downtown offices.
Keep it local
Instead of heading to the malls for your holiday shopping, Bailey and Eddington hope you'll visit the Pop-Up Shops and the Winter Shops at Myriad Gardens for one big reason: To keep your money in the local economy.
“I just think the experience is so much better,” Eddington said. “And your money stays here when you buy from one of these local shops. They're really committed to Oklahoma.”