Wednesday, June 28, 2017


There has been a whirlwind of activity at the Retreat this spring and summer so far.  Lots of family and high school reunions are bringing people to Watonga, Roman Nose State Park, and to our home.  

We've continued to host OKLAHOMA HOUSE CONCERTS, and serving wood-fired pizza dinners as a fundraiser for Phoenix Circle Foundation.  We fed a youth group from Oklahoma City who were in town doing summer VBS programs, and have had a few other groups come out for The Oven wood-fired pizza.  We're attracting more musicians for the house concerts and attendance is growing. We have been able to have at least one concert a month. 

We had guests who were in Watonga High School Class of '72 one weekend in May, with some coming in from as far away as Washington, and New Mexico. It was a good group and fun to catch up with people Andy went to school with, and to meet a few who I had not met before.  We had a visit from Easter and Carolyn Moore from Tulsa another week.  Earlier in May, singer/songwriter Merry Ellen Kirk stayed with us on her way to California. She did a concert on the lawn, in front of the pond. It was a magical evening.  

In June we had Dylan Stewart come play.  He originally set up outside in the front yard, but at nightfall we went indoors and he played some more. 

Friday, June 9, 2017

May 30, 2017 - Catching Up

I haven't posted here in quite a while. The main reason is lack of time.  We've been keeping busy at the  house (we appreciate all of our new and returning guests), and organizing and hosting live music shows we call OKLAHOMA HOUSE CONCERTS. We've been able to have one concert a month this year. 

In March, a young musician named Jessica Farmer came out to play.  Our friend Jon Lyle had told us about her and we contacted her mother, who travels with her.  She writes original songs and also does covers of some country songs.  Her performance of "Jolene" was unique and amazing. 

In April we had guests every weekend.  One of them has developed her own organic body balm, called Kaloka Kare.  She gave me a sample and it was truly awesome.  It is super moisturizing and isn't oily or too fragrant.  I have ordered some to put in our rooms for our guests to use.  It is really good for all skin but works especially well on the heels of my feet, to keep them from drying and cracking -- a real problem in the summertime.  She has a website to order on-line:

Social media takes a lot of time, but it we get the best "bang for the buck" with our small advertising budget by staying current on Facebook and networking via social media options.  I am also on the board of directors of an Oklahoma tourism association, Red Carpet Country, representing Blaine County. I work with our executive director and the rest of the board to promote tourism in northwest and north central Oklahoma, and my main focus is on Blaine County.  

If you see our website,, you'll see that we share tourist related information about businesses in town when we know about them.  I also administer a facebook page named "Blaine Co. Community Events" which is open to anyone to post an event or activity or business.

May, June, and July are our busiest months. There are lots of family reunions and high school reunions going on.  It is also a busy time for the Roman Nose State Park Lodge and sometimes accommodations in our area are hard to find if one waits until April to make a reservation. Recently we had three couples staying with us, who were all related to each other in one way or another and some of them hadn't been to Watonga before; one couple hadn't been back in many years. 

One of the couples had a less than pleasant experience in town and the husband wrote a post on his facebook page about their visit to his childhood hometown.   The post riled some feathers and drew verbal fire from some local residents. But there were also lots of comments from local people who agreed that the town needs some changes, and even made suggestions about what changes could be made. The original post and comment thread got more likes and comments than any other post I think I've seen -- over 2200!!   Like the true gentleman that he is, our friend removed his post and all of the likes and comments from the facebook page (after saving it to a word document).

We are blessed and fortunate that most people here, long-time friends and people who recently know us, and people who come to stay at the Retreat, know that we promote Watonga . Our business is hospitality and bringing visitors to our place benefits us and the town. We will always refer our guests to the businesses and services available in town but we also have available information from businesses in Canton, Geary, and Okeene.