Tinker AFB, OK Image 1
    Tinker AFB, OK Image 2

    Tinker AFB, OK Museums

    The JM Davis Arms & History Museum is a private collection of firearms, militaria, and assorted memorabilia turned museum. It claims to be the largest collection of firearms in the world, and is probably worth the trip to Claremore, about two hours northeast of Tinker and OK City, on the other side of Tulsa.

    The Oklahoma City Museum of Art has a large collection of various art for exhibition, and provides educational programming for adults and children, including a Tiny Tuesday program for kids 2-5 years.

    Oklahoma City is the state capital, and the Oklahoma State Capitol Building is available for guided or self-guided tours. The Oklahoma Capitol Building is currently surrounded by oil rigs - this is an oil producing state - and there are several monuments on the grounds, including the Veterans Memorial.

    The National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum presents the frontier in art, items, and events, with lots of history, fact, and legend in the mix. Western cattle ranchers, farmers, lawmen and badmen are all part of the story of the West.

    The Museum of Osteology is a bone museum - visitors can see skeletons from all sorts of animals, including lizards, snakes, turtles, rhinos, humans, whales, apes, birds, and another few thousand animals! Only about 15 minutes from base.

    The Oklahoma Railway Museum has a collection of cars and engines, an inside train for kids, and various rail-related items.

    The Oklahoma History Center is the state history museum and focuses on Oklahoma history from tribal to modern times.

    The 99s Museum of Women Pilots preserves the history and memory of pioneering female pilots, and has the largest collection of aviatrix items in the world. (The 99s is an association of the first women pilots; when they founded the organization, there were 99 members.)

    The Oklahoma State Firefighters Museum specializes in preserving and presenting antique firefighting equipment.

    The National Softball Hall of Fame is near the Firefighter's Museum, and is a great stop for softballers who want to know more about the best players in history.

    The Shawnee Santa Fe Depot Museum has an interesting building, and several tracks of history and culture. The Depot is made from cut limestone blocks, and looks like something from the middle ages, and houses a history museum with pioneer and native history exhibits.

    The Golden Dome is a curious building in downtown OK City; it was once a bank, and has so far been preserved as one of the earliest geodesic domes. The building is currently unused and there are no tours, but people interested in buildings might give it a look while downtown.

    Old Western Army Forts: Oklahoma had a fairly large number of Army forts in the 1800s, and some are still standing, or partially standing. One, Fort Sill, is still an Army base. Fort Reno, Fort Gibson, Fort Supply, Fort Townsend, and Fort Washita are in various hands, but generally have tours, self-guided tours, or markers. Some of these forts are a few hours away from base.

    The US Navy is represented in Oklahoma by the USS Batfish, a WWII submarine that sank over ten thousand tons of enemy shipping in the Pacific. The Batfish is in Muskogee, about two hours east of Tinker AFB.

    Science Oklahoma is a child friendly science museum with exhibits in many disciplines and a special emphasis on aviation science. This museum also hosts the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame.

    The Red Earth Museum focuses on the culture and arts of Native American people. It is in downtown, and features work from many tribes and native artists. Oklahoma was once the Indian Territory, and dozens of Native American tribes are located in the state.