Reba McEntire Hopes To Bring Folks to Atoka, Oklahoma, With Brand New Restaurant
The doors are now open on Reba’s Place!
Back in 2020, Oklahoma native, Reba McEntire got a very interesting call from an old friend. Her neighbor from her days growing up in Chokie, Oklahoma, called and said she was working on a plan to revitalize the town of Atoka, Oklahoma, and she thought maybe if the country superstar were to open a restaurant there, that could shine a spotlight on this southeastern Oklahoma town.
McEntire gave it some thought as she explained to Southern Living in a recent phone call. “Mama passed away in March of 2020 so I stayed in Oklahoma until Mother’s Day. We had to cancel our tour because of Covid. And so I helped with settling Mama and Daddy’s estate, cleaning out the house. And so I stayed back there in my home country, my home stomping grounds for a couple of months and just got reacquainted with the state of Oklahoma again, my love for it.”
She said the location just made good business sense. Atoka is located where Highway 69 and Highway 75 meet and is in between Dallas and Tulsa.
“So if you’re driving from Dallas up to Tulsa, you’re gonna pass through Atoka, and if you take a right on main street, right up on the left, is Reba’s Place. So we were guaranteed, if not being a destination, but as someplace to stop on the way to a destination,” she said.
After a slightly longer than planned build and preparation time frame thanks in part to Covid, McEntire, in partnership with Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma and the city of Atoka, officially opened the doors of Reba’s Place to the public on January 27, 2023.
Reba’s Place is a three-story, 13,284-square-foot, restaurant, bar, entertainment venue and retail store all built into a century-old formerMasonic Temple. The first floor hosts the restaurant, bar, and the stage. The menu at the restaurant draws influences from various points of McEntire’s life both in Oklahoma and her life on the road. Including Choctaw beef steaks and chops, slow smoked brisket, Nashville hot chicken, Memphis-style bologna sandwiches, an array of burgers and sandwiches, banana pudding jars and McEntire’s favorite strawberry shortcake.
And yes there will be live music but nothing too crazy, as McEntire explained.
“It’s small entertainment. It’s not like big bands coming in. It’s acoustic. I didn’t want it loud so people can sit and still enjoy the music but can still talk in the meantime.” But she did say she would absolutely be taking to the stage from time to time.
The second floor boasts private rooms for parties or meetings as well as a wrap-around balcony where you can grab a seat and watch the show down below. The third floor holds the mercantile store, which per a press release, “features merchandise and memorabilia only available at Reba’s Place. Merchandise available at Reba’s Place showcases current and past Reba tour merchandise, Reba Boots by Justin, Reba’s fashion line in partnership with Dillard’s, Montana Silversmiths, Lodge Cookware, candles, boutique body products and housewares.”
In addition to the merchandise for sale, this area of Reba’s Place also hosts a large collection of costumes, gold and platinum certifications, photographs, awards and posters from throughout McEntire’s career.
On the third floor visitors will also find “Jac’s Library,” the new home for the expansive collection of books once owned by the late Jackie McEntire. “We took all her books and made a library where you can sit and read a book and have a drink,” McEntire said of what she called “Mama’s Library.”
McEntire is “thrilled to pieces” about Reba’s Place and she hopes it will be “a place where you can eat, visit, and be entertained.”
For more Southern Living news, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!
Read the original article on Southern Living.