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Miami

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"Sidewalk highway" section of Route 66

Miami is a city of 13570 people in the Green Country region of Oklahoma on old US Route 66.

Understand[edit]

The town is named for the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma (the traditional name Myaamia, plural Myaamiaki, comes from an older native term meaning 'downstream people'). In a typical Oklahoman fashion, "Miami" is pronounced mia-muh by the locals. Miami is the capital of the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma, Modoc Tribe of Oklahoma, Ottawa Tribe of Oklahoma, Peoria Tribe of Indians, Seneca-Cayuga Tribe, and Shawnee Tribe; there are various native-owned businesses, including casinos, in the area.

Get in[edit]

By car, Miami may be reached by old US 66, US Route 69 or Interstate 44.

Get around[edit]

  • B & B Cab, 128 C St NE, Miami 74354, +1 918 542-1233. Local taxi service.
  • Pelivan Transit, 333 Oak Street, Big Cabin OK 74332-0302, +1 918 783-5791, fax: +1 918-783-5786. Rural bus transportation over a wide area from Tulsa northeast to the state boundary.

See[edit]

Coleman Theatre
  • Coleman Theatre, 103 North Main St., +1 918 540-2425. Live theatre with elegant Louis XV interior, opened by George L. Coleman Sr. on April 18, 1929 and donated to the City of Miami in 1989. Tours available Tue-Sat.
  • Dobson Museum, 110 A S.W., +1 918 542-5388. 1-4PM We,Fr,Su. Ottawa County Historical Society museums cover topics such as Oklahoma artist Charles Banks Wilson, the history of mining in Picher, Texaco marketing memorabilia, native artefacts (including a teepee), military veterans, Mickey Mantle and some of the early sports teams in the area. Miami Garden Club and historical society volunteers maintain the elaborate gardens.
  • Route 66 Vintage Iron Motorcycle Museum, 128 South Main, +1 918 542-6170. Open year-round. Several vintage motorcycles and abundant motorcycle memorabilia, including a large vintage motorcycle helmet wall. One of the largest private collections of Evel Knievel memorabilia in the world; the centerpiece to this collection is his Snake River Canyon Super Van. Free.
  • Miami Nine-Foot Section (Route 66 Ribbon Road), starts at E. 130th St. and South 550, rejoined US66 three miles later. A stretch of original Route 66 in use from 1921-1937 south of Miami is paved only nine feet wide. This segment predates US 66 itself (1926) as it was earlier part of an existing state highway.

Do[edit]

Buy[edit]

Eat[edit]

Budget[edit]

  • Puttin'-A-Round, 725 North Main, North Miami, +1 918 325-8538. 11AM-8PM, Tue-Sat. Route 66 burger bar, established Nov 2016 on the site of a short-lived vintage 1960's miniature golf course. Build your own burgers with ⅓ lb fresh beef patties, condiments and fresh vegetables. Hand-cut fries with homemade dipping sauce, frozen custard, Italian ice, chicken strips, BLT sandwiches, chili, 100% beef hot dogs and foot-long corndogs. The restored mini-golf course (18 holes, $2/ball) is planned to re-open in Spring 2017.
  • Waylan's Ku-Ku Burger, 915 N Main St, +1 918 542-1696. Popular Route 66 retro burger joint, the last location of what was a once-popular 200-store Midwest fast food chain in the 1960s. Food is made-to-order (owner Eugene Waylan usually mans the grill personally) and takes a bit longer to prepare than standard fast-food fare. Ask to hold the ice for fountain drinks, as there is a tendency to put too much ice in and a charge (about $0.27) for refills. under $10.

Mid-range[edit]

  • Milagro's Mexican Restaurant, 103 East Central St, +1 918 542-1954.

Splurge[edit]

Drink[edit]

  • Joses Blue Room Lounge, 815 E Central Av, +1 918 542-5085. Bar and tavern.

Sleep[edit]

  • Buffalo Run Hotel, 1366 N. Highway 69A, +1 918 542-2900, fax: +1 918-542-2908. Includes Internet, coffee maker, refrigerator and microwave, breakfast. Business facilities and ten-seat executive boardroom, exercise room, indoor pool. Adjacent to namesake casino and restaurants (Joe's Outback Casino, Coleman House Restaurant, Joe's Grill). $91-111.
  • Microtel Inn & Suites, 2015 East Steve Owens Blvd, +1 918 540-3333.
  • Townsman Motel, 900 East Steve Owens Blvd., +1 918 542-6631, fax: +1 918-542-7547. Check-in: 2PM, check-out: 11AM. Seventy rooms. Includes continental breakfast, wi-fi, local calls, outdoor pool, microwave, refrigerators, coffee maker. Pet-friendly hotel (extra fees apply). $52-100.

Nearby[edit]

Commerce[edit]

Mickey Mantle Field
  • Mickey Mantle Field, Commerce High School, 420 East D Street, Commerce OK 74339. A nine foot tall, 900 pound statue on a 5-foot-tall pedestal commemorates local son and baseball legend Mickey Mantle.

Picher[edit]

Abandoned Picher Mining Museum (in 2008)

An environmental disaster ghost town eight miles (13km) north of Miami, on US 69 at Treece, Kansas border. Founded 1913 after lead and zinc deposits were discovered on leased Quapaw land, Pitcher was once a city of 15,000 which produced lead for bullets for two world wars. Mining ended in 1957; population declined 80-90% in the following decade. 14,000 abandoned mine shafts, 70 million tons of mine tailings, and 36 million tons of mill sand and sludge were left behind, undermining 85% of the city's buildings and contaminating potable water supplies with lead. A 2006 state-sponsored buyout and permanent evacuation were already well underway when, on May 10, 2008, an EF4 tornado killed eight people and cut a mile-wide swath through town. The tornado-damaged structures were never rebuilt.

The 1,000 maps, 500 photos and various artefacts from the Picher Mining Field Museum (N Connell Ave, in the 1926 Tri-State Zinc and Lead Ore Producers Association office) were moved to the Baxter Springs Historical Society Museum in 2008. The city hall was closed and its archives turned over to the Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College in Miami in 2010. Most buildings were torn down in 2011. The town disincorporated and disappeared from maps in 2013. In 2014, six residents remained. An arsonist burned the empty, abandoned mining museum to the ground on April 14, 2015. Old Miner's Pharmacy, the last remaining business, died when its proprietor Gary Linderman (Sept. 8, 1954-June 6, 2015) gave up the ghost after a sudden illness.

While most buildings were demolished, a few still stand - mostly as ruins. An abandoned Catholic church, a ruined pool hall, an auction house, a building where mining equipment was sold and a small collection of homes are all slowly deteriorating.

Go next[edit]

Routes through Miami
TulsaVinita  W I-44.svgWill Rogers Turnpike.svg E  JoplinSpringfield
LawrenceOttawaW US 54.svg E  N US 59.svg S  GroveSallisaw
TulsaVinita  W US 66 (historic).svg E  Baxter SpringsJoplin
Kansas CityOverland Park  N US 69.svg S  VinitaMuskogee
Jct N Oklahoma State Highway 99.svg S ← Jct N US 75.svg S ← Jct N US 169.svg S  W Oklahoma State Highway 10.svg S  WyandotteMuskogee


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