In the fast-paced business world, top-level decisions are often made behind closed doors in a boardroom with four walls, fluorescent lights and tile ceilings. If you're looking for ways to rejuvenate souls and get the productive juices flowing at your next company gathering, open the door, turn off the lights and look past the ceiling tiles toward the open sky at your nearest Oklahoma state park. Placing employees in the relaxing environment offered at some state park facilities can inspire creativity, fresh ideas and promote team spirit.
A lakeside destination is always ideal for a company meeting and the lodge at Sequoyah State Park near Wagoner has it all. There's plenty of space for gathering, with five individual meeting rooms and a large hall that can be divided into smaller breakout areas.
The informal bunkhouse, across from the swimming pool, is perfect for indoor team-building sessions. For your hard day's night, relax in one of the lodge's three large suites, a poolside cabana, or a comfortable room or cabin.
Meal options are easy at the in-house Calico Crossing restaurant which serves tasty and healthy homestyle dishes. Admittedly, it could be difficult to focus on work during your meeting because the call of the outdoors is literally just a step away.
The park's paved trail is perfect for group hiking, jogs and bike rides or you can saddle up the troops for a trail ride on horseback. The lake provides excellent fishing along the shoreline or by boat. And, who can resist a spirited but competitive round of golf at the 18-hole course located across from the lodge? To book a meeting at Sequoyah Lodge, call (800) 368-1486.
Lakeview Lodge at Beavers Bend State Park near Broken Bow is surrounded by the timbered landscape of tall pine and cedar trees, overlooking the clear waters of Broken Bow Lake. Each room at the lodge offers a spectacular view of the sun rising above the lake — assurance that your work day can only get better.
After a complimentary continental breakfast in the great room of the lodge, guests can go directly to the upstairs meeting room where a large picture window offers a bird's-eye view of the tall pine trees.
Another option is the Forest Heritage Center and Museum, located in the river bend area of the state park. The museum houses historical documents, antique forestry tools, wood art and homestead memorabilia and also offers large meeting rooms for business gatherings.
Fitness buffs can hike miles of trails throughout the park and outdoor lovers can fish in the lake or the sparkling trout-filled waters of the Lower Mountain Fork River. Golfers will find beauty as well as a challenge on the 18-hole Cedar Creek Golf Course. To book a meeting at Lakeview Lodge, call (800) 435-5514.
Western Oklahoma sunsets are picture perfect for visitors at Roman Nose Lodge in Watonga. Not to be outdone by the sunsets, the sunrise over the mesas paint a vibrant panorama in the early morning hours.
Surrounded by the canyons and mesas, the 22-room lodge is a perfect marriage of structure and landscape and offers meeting space in two separate areas. Eleven cottages located in the park provide guests with a leisurely and comfortable place to rest after an engaging daylong think tank session.
Problem-solving creates big appetites and the lodge restaurant serves up palate-pleasing dishes from breakfast until dinner. Park activities include mountain bike and hiking trails, horseback trail rides and fishing in Lake Watonga.
The challenging 18-hole golf course takes you deep into the valleys or high atop a mesa where views of the multihued gypsum canyon walls are breathtaking. To book a meeting at Roman Nose Lodge, call (800) 892-8690.
Other state park meeting facilities are available at Lake Murray Lodge near Ardmore and Belle Starr View Lodge at Robbers Cave State Park near Wilburton. Each offers indoor and outdoor entertainment, lodging and rooms for off-site gatherings.
Break away from the traditional “bored-room” for your next large meeting. Adjust your work attitude and spirit by getting back to nature at an Oklahoma state park lodge.
Keli Clark is marketing coordinator for Oklahoma State Parks.