Editor, Daily Press:
When we retired to Tahlequah in 2007, we wondered how the changing economy might affect the area. At the time, the downtown area was about half-occupied, and we wondered, “Is this town rising up or falling down?”
We decided to invest in Tahlequah by purchasing a century-old home and re-invigorating it with repairs and enhancements. We have been rewarded with evidence that Tahlequah is, indeed, on the rise. We try to spend our money in town, and to spend it in enterprises where the money stays in town. We are members of several local associations and organizations, and lend them our support, volunteer time, and donated materials, to help where we can.
Selfishly, we hope the things we are interested in burgeon – things like art, music, literacy, history, natural environments, walking trails, along with good and healthy food. And we encourage sound law enforcement, safe roads, and support for education by keeping ourselves informed, talking to our representatives, and by voting on issues.
We would like to see Tahlequah draw dollars from outside the area. We are pleased to see tourists’ quarters of all kinds and levels, and we are especially glad to see the arrival of several nice bed-and-breakfast options. When we target an area to visit, we often opt for the bed-and-breakfast experience, as we did in a recent visit to St. Louis. Our daughter lives on the inland waterway in Florida, but her home is too small to have overnight guests. She has directed us to a lovely B&B in her neighborhood, and we love it like a second home.
We believe visitors who want to soak up the ambiance of Tahlequah, or who have come to research and engage in interviews, will have an optimal experience in one of the local B&Bs, and we appreciate that the city has made it possible for these entities to exist here. Such accommodations are hardly disruptive to their neighborhoods due to a small number of guests who are generally quiet and introspective.
We imagine our home activities of hosting various club meetings, fundraising parties, inviting artists and writers to work with us at home, not to mention our hosting family member visits from our eight grown children and their offspring, is more disruptive than the typical B&B. We thank our neighbors for their indulgence. They are quality people, and so are most Tahlequah residents.
We love it here.
Karen Cooper and Jim Roaix