First Americans Museum preparing to open to the public


OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – After years of construction and delays, the First Americans Museum will officially open to the public this weekend.

It’s a day almost two decades in the making.

Construction on the ‘American Indian Cultural Center and Museum’ began in 2006, but came to an abrupt halt six years later when state funding for the project ran out.

The embattled cultural center fought for funding, but legislators refused to write another check.

In 2016, the project was finally revived in an agreement among the state and a partnership between the City of Oklahoma City and the Chickasaw Nation of Oklahoma.

Now, the First Americans Museum is ready to share the stories of this land’s first peoples.

Museum officials say the doors will open 8 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 18, with extra entertainment, cultural demonstrations and activities occurring all weekend.

A tribal procession of Oklahoma’s 39 tribal nations will take place Saturday at 10:30 a.m., followed by remarks from tribal, city and museum leaders.

“We are thrilled to share with the public a premier venue dedicated to the history, art and cultural lifeways of First Americans in Oklahoma. We invite everyone to the long-awaited opening of FAM in September,” said James Pepper Henry, FAM director and CEO. “Those who attend the Grand Opening will be among the first to experience a national treasure that will be enjoyed for decades to come.”

Due to expected large crowds, opening weekend tickets must be purchased in advance.

Tickets are $5 per person, per day and can be purchased exclusively through the museum’s website.

During Grand Opening Weekend only, no onsite parking will be available, with the exception of parking provided for visitors with disability parking placard credentials.

Free parking shuttle services will be available to transport visitors all weekend to and from designated parking sites, starting at 8 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 18, and running throughout the weekend’s scheduled events.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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