Tulsa Pop Kids Drive-Through Experience!
It’s no secret that we love Tulsa Pop Kids. Tulsa Pop Kids (TPop) is a fantastic organization whose mission is to promote literacy and education by reaching out to kids and the local community through pop culture.
Last spring, we were sad to miss out on their first drive-through experience. It’s not that we didn’t go! This event was just so darned popular that we couldn’t get in. But the geniuses behind TPop events have put their noggins together and come up with a plan. This time, the event was a ticketed event with free tickets available on Eventbrite.
With Halloween just around the corner, TulsaPop made this event villain-centric, bringing kids face-to-face with some of the biggest baddies in the pop culture universe. Fortunately, there were also plenty of heroes to go around. The drive-through event partnered with local cosplayers to bring kids face-to-face with their favorite characters in the safest way possible (thanks, pandemic!).
Filled with all the suspense that comes from having to wait several months to enjoy this event, we were super excited and signed up immediately. We waited about 25 minutes to get in, time we passed by listening to our favorite podcast, Welcome to Night Vale.
Finally, we rounded the corner and pulled up to Persimmon Hollow, the new home of TPop and Tankano Trading Post, the place where kids get to trade their love of reading in for sweet prizes. Learn all about our adventures with Jawas at the trading post by checking out this link.
Before pulling in to meet our favorite pop culture icons, we passed by a kiosk where our kids were each given the opportunity to pick out a brand new book. Our kids were thrilled to pick out a Minecraft book, a Plants v. Zombies book, and Trollhunters. They were also given a coupon for free Chick-fil-A each and a bag full of goodies to share that included a couple of sweet squishies, perfect for my squishy-obsessed tweens.
Suddenly, we were immersed in the orchestral score from Jurassic Park. To our right, a sign reading “Enter at Your Own Risk” lay askew between red barrels. We passed a baby triceratops noshing on a shrub, a velociraptor on a motorbike, and a dino-damaged gyrosphere.
As we cruised through Persimmon Hollow, we found ourselves surrounded by Avengers characters. To our right was Thanos, Thor, Deadpool, Wolverine, and some other people because look, I’m not good with superheroes. To our left was a gaggle of Gryffindors.
Ahead just past Baymax and some Transformers was a handful of DC villains and heroes. Batman, Joker, and the Riddler were all there, as were Wonder Woman, Superman, and Supergirl. As we drove through the hollow, we also passed awesome props including the Circle of Life scene from The Lion King and Spongebob with a light bulb over his head.
Most surprisingly to me, my kids’ favorite part came when we passed the Wizard of Oz fam including Glinda the Good Witch, The Wicked Witch of the West, Dorothy, and Toto along with the Wicked Witch of the East’s feet.
But the fun was just getting started. We rolled up to Maleficent and her dragon, Ursula, and a handful of Disney princesses, past a happy yellow giant mushroom, and past Captain Hook’s ship into the area where Tankano Traders resides. There, we found ourselves surrounded on all sides by Star Wars friends and foes alike including what we’re fairly sure was a Smurf imposter.
Toward the end of the drive-through, we ran into our friend Robert Federline holding a baby Toothless dragon! We passed a Camp Crystal Lake van from Friday the 13th, passed the Mystery Machine, and passed the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man along with a couple of Ghostbusters and an Ecto-truck.
The last section found us in a mini LEGO world populated by characters from the LEGO movies. Tons of work has clearly gone into these props and they’re absolutely charming.
Even though two of my kids are nearly 13, they loved everything about this drive-through experience. As I think back on my boys at Disney World having to be pulled away from the princess meetup (four-year-old Arthur was very taken with Snow White), I can imagine little kids absolutely losing their marbles with excitement over this experience.
Although I’m still pretty sad the pandemic killed convention season and we had to miss out on Tulsa Pop Culture Expo, this outing served as a pretty decent placeholder and got my kids inspired to read their new books and get ready for the next Tankano Traders day.
If you missed this drive-through experience, don’t worry. TPop plans to continue the fun every chance they get. In the meantime, be sure to follow their Facebook page to keep up with the latest events and don’t miss out on the upcoming Tankano Traders days.
Happy Halloween, everyone, and I hope you have a spooky little week in your nebula!