Oklahoma Facts
Oklahoma Facts

21 Interesting Oklahoma Facts

Karin Lehnardt
By Karin Lehnardt, Senior Writer
Published February 19, 2022
  • Even though most people consider watermelon a fruit, Oklahoma has officially declared it a vegetable. In fact, Oklahoma has declared that watermelon is its state vegetable.[11]
  • Oklahoma has the highest incarceration rate in the world.[10]
  • The state flower of Oklahoma is the Oklahoma Rose.[1]
  • "Oklahoma" comes from the Choctaw words "okla" (people) and "humma" (red).[1]
  • World
    The world's largest pop bottle is a 66-foot-tall color-shifting LED sculpture bottle next to a store full of soda pop
  • Arcadia, Oklahoma, is home to the world's largest soda bottle. The "bottle" is made from yellow steel hoops, upon which are attached thousands of LED lenses that change colors and undulate.[1]
  • Oklahoma's official state meal is black-eyed peas, chicken-fried steak, okra, squash, corn on the cob, cornbread, barbeque pork, biscuits, sausage and gravy, grits, strawberries, and pecan pie.[1]
  • The owner of the Piggly Wiggly store in Oklahoma invented the shopping cart in 1937.[1]
  • Due to alleged Bigfoot sightings, eastern Oklahoma hosts an annual Bigfoot Festival.[6]
  • A woman from Oklahoma is the only person on record to be hit by space junk. She was hit by debris from a U.S. Delta II rocket but was uninjured.[14]
  • Every year, the town of Beaver, Oklahoma, hosts the Official World Championship Cow Chip Throwing Contest. Locals tell newcomers that licking fingers between throws will bring you good luck and a better grip.[13]
  • Oklahoma has more man-made lakes than any other state in America.[1]
  • Oklahoma's nickname, the "Sooner State," is derived from settlers who snuck into the state before it was considered legal to do so.[3]
  • The first Tornado Warning in the United States was issued in Oklahoma on March 25, 1948.[5]
  • Oklahoma Tornado Fact
    Oklahoma usually has about 60 tornados per year

  • Oklahoma leads the United States in the number of cannabis dispensaries, and it ranks #2 for dispensaries per capita.[7]
  • Elizabeth Marie Tallchief (1925–2013) was born in Oklahoma and is considered to be America's first prima ballerina.[9]
  • Thirty-nine American Indian tribes are headquartered in Oklahoma, more than in any other state, partly because Oklahoma was the end of the infamous Trail of Tears for several Native American tribes. Only five tribes are considered indigenous to the state: Osage, Caddo, Kiowa, Comanche, and Wichita.

  • World
    At 1,999 feet, Cavanal Hill is only one foot from being a mountain
  • Oklahoma's Cavanal Hill is considered to be the tallest hill in the United States, at 1,999 feet above the surrounding terrain. A hill is considered to be a mountain at 2,000 feet.[4]
  • The Oklahoma State Capitol is the only capitol in the United States with an oil well underneath it.[12]
  • During the Great Depression in the 1930s, Oklahoma suffered through severe droughts and high winds. As a result, over 1 million Oklahomans or "Okies" migrated to California.[1]
  • Oklahoma has the second largest Native American population in the United States, after California.[1]
  • Oklahoma's National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum has the world's most extensive collection of American rodeo photography, barbed wire saddlery, and early rodeo trophies. It also features over 28,000 Western and American Indian pieces of art and artifacts.[8]

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