The First Americans Museum is a key stop in Oklahoma City

As one might expect, Oklahoma City is located in Oklahoma, and is both the largest city in the state and its capital. As such, it has a lot to do in it and no shortage of ways to kill a week or two on vacation. But one new venue is a must-stop location when you’re in town.

The First Americans Museum is an interesting, engaging, and unique venue in OKC as well as an important one. And it had a long journey from concept to reality, finally coming to fruition during the pandemic in 2021.

Building the First Americans Museum

Oklahoma City

CANADA – 1999/01/01: Oklahoma, Near Pawhuska, Nature Conservancy’s Tallgrass Prairie Preserve, Landscape, Goldenrod. (Photo by Wolfgang Kaehler/LightRocket via Getty Images)

The idea of building a museum dedicated to the First American Nations in Oklahoma City dates back to the 1990s. At that point, it was referred to as the American Indian Cultural Center and Museum, which would have been more of a mouthful.

Originally under the purview of the State of Oklahoma, construction began in 2006 but started to slow down due to a lack of funding. It completely ground to a halt in 2012, leaving the project to lay dormant for the next seven years.

Then in 2019, work finally started in earnest once again after Oklahoma City took responsibility for the project. Now named the First Americans Museum, the doors opened on September 18, 2021, giving OKC a new destination for locals and visitors alike.

The purpose behind the building

The First Americans Museum is more than a collection of artifacts in a building. It serves the great purpose of outlining the history and contributions that First Nation Americans have made across the state of Oklahoma.

Keeping that in mind, there are also a lot of really cool exhibits, artifacts, and more to experience throughout the museum. That includes an exploration of the 39 Tribal Nations whose former lands make up the state the museum is located in.

As is often the case in a museum, FAM has an excellent gift shop with unique items representative of the cultures contained in its walls. It’s also home to Thirty Nine Restaurant which has a menu that represents the best of modern Indigenous cuisine.

Spending time in Oklahoma City

Oklahoma City

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN – OCTOBER 10: Aleksej Pokusevski #17 of the Oklahoma City Thunder dribbles the ball against Jordan Nwora #13 of the Milwaukee Bucks in the second half during a preseason game at Fiserv Forum on October 10, 2021 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)

While the First Americans Museum is more than worth checking out, there are certainly other reasons to stop by Oklahoma City. If you’re there during the NBA season, it’s imperative that you check out an OKC Thunder game.

Additionally, OKC has booming arts scene that continues to grow by leaps and bounds. There are numerous museums, galleries, and cultural experiences to enjoy. Plus, the Oklahoma City Zoo is supposed to be outstanding. And there is an impressive array of food trucks to check out.

Oklahoma City already had a lot of great things to do when the First Americans Museum opened its doors. But this unique and special place has only made it better. Just remember that it’s closed on Tuesdays and you’ll have a wonderful trip. The FAM, not OKC.