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Me, Downtown

Like all good ideas, TashaDoesTulsa.com, now the award-winning online insider's guide to Tulsa's independent art, music, food and family entertainment scenes, started in a bar.

In March 2007 I was working as a reporter for Tulsa Business Journal, headquartered in the heart of downtown. Though I'd lived in Tulsa my whole life, having a job in the center of the city helped me to fall in love with my hometown all over again. I was excited, and I wanted to shout about Tulsa from the rooftops.

As I was considering how to best do this, I couldn't help but remember some of the popular refrains from my high school days: "There's nothing to do in Tulsa," "Tulsa's boring," and "I can't wait to get the hell out of this town." Granted, all high schoolers say things like this about their hometowns. They're disgruntled and disenchanted by nature. You know this, I know this, lots of money has been made in the music industry based on this, we all get it.

But, being a fifth-generation Tulsan and proud of it, these kinds of comments always set me on edge.

Plus, since energy was gathering for downtown revitalization at the time, I was hearing lots of push-back from those who were convinced Tulsa's time had passed.

So, after a chat with friends over a few beers at McNellie's, I decided to start a blog. In my introductory post I wrote about ways to get to get to know what was unique about Tulsa. I was convinced (as I am still) that the main reason Tulsans complain that there's nothing exciting to do in Tulsa is because they're uninformed about what makes the city special, and they know little about its entertainment scene. Rather than post about all the things I knew to do in town, I wanted to start by writing how Tulsans could discover the city for themselves.

I wrote off and on until my son came along in early 2008. Armed with yet another reason to explore and learn more about my city and what there was to do in Tulsa for families, I decided to take to blogging in earnest, both as a way to teach others about what makes Tulsa the best city around and to learn more about it myself. Now I blog every day on Tulsa topics ranging from where to have fun with your kids to which restaurant serves the best chile relleno to what's going on this weekend.

This little blog has won some big awards, including a Tulsey and Best Culture Blog (for three years running) and Best Tulsa Blog in the Oklahoma Blog Awards. I've been making weekly appearances on the KRMG Morning News with Joe Kelley since spring 2009, and I also contribute to Oklahoma Magazine and Ttownmoms.com, a social networking site for Tulsa-area parents that's backed by KJRH Channel 2. I continue my work with Tulsa Business Journal as its food and entertainment writer.

I do most of this work with a toddler in my lap, a Jack Russell terrier at my feet and a patient husband picking up my slack in the laundry and dishwashing departments as he helps me and encourages me to do Tulsa all the way. Best of all about blogging have been my readers, who've pushed me and inspired me to create stories and articles and photos that inform, compel and show off Tulsa and the best it has in store for residents and visitors alike.

Just as wonderful are my fellow Oklahoma bloggers, who fight the good fight of converting the complacent into advocates for our state and all that it has to offer.

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E-mail me: tasha@tashadoestulsa.com

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Ball Media, LLC
P.O. Box 690981
Tulsa, OK 74169
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