The 2nd Annual Destination Claremore presents the legendary performer Shirley Jones. Well-known as Laurey Williams in the screen version of “Oklahoma!” Miss Jones was also Shirley Partridge in “The Partridge Family,” and Marion the librarian in “The Music Man.”

She will headline Destination Claremore April 29- May 7 with a concert at the Robson Performing Arts Center on Tuesday, May 3, 6:30 pm at the Robson Performing Arts Center and an evening at Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs for a “Meet & Greet with Shirley Jones” Wednesday, May 4 from 7 to 9 pm.

Longtime performer and actress Jones began singing at age 6. In 1952, at age 18 Shirley Mae signed up for the “Miss Pittsburgh” competition and took the crown. Before heading off to college, she stopped in New York for a vacation. A week later Jones auditioned for Rogers & Hammerstein’s show “South Pacific.” Mr. Richard Rogers called in Mr. Hammerstein and Shirley Mae Jones was put under “personal management” contract and the rest is history. Less than a year later 19 year old Jones became Laurie in the film version of “Oklahoma!” Since then Miss Jones has starred both in musicals and films winning an Oscar in 1960 for “Elmer Gantry.”

As part of the Lynn Riggs Memorial, Claremore has the original Surrey with the fringe on top and dresses that Miss Jones wore while filming Oklahoma! Both will be on special exhibit at the J.M. Davis Arms & Historical Museum, starting with Claremore’s Night at the JM Davis during Destination Claremore, May 2. Miss Jones will make a special appearance as her movie character, Laurey, is inducted into the Claremore Wall of Fame. 

““I know I’m speaking for the whole band that the Sounds of Music Orchestra is looking so forward to coming back to perform again this year, especially opening for the lovely and talented Shirley Jones. We’re planning on another terrific selection of music everybody will enjoy,” said Jimmy Jerrels, Sounds of Music Orchestra.

Tickets for the Shirley Jones performance at the Robson PAC are on sale now! Tickets are $31, $42, and $53 taxes included, and can be purchased at the Robson PAC; online at www.myticketoffice.com; or by calling the Tulsa PAC at 918-596-7111. Groups with 15 or more people can contact the Robson PAC; special rates may apply.

“When I was growing up, just like all the kids my age, watching The Partridge Family was the highlight of the week,” said Tanya Andrews, Claremore Convention and Visitors Bureau executive director. “Now, knowing a little more about Claremore’s history and the significance of ‘Oklahoma’s Cast of Legends,’ having Shirley Jones in Claremore takes on an entirely new meaning.”

Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs will be hosting a Meet & Greet with Shirley Jones Wednesday, May 4 from 7-9 pm. Come get autographs, take pictures with Ms. Jones, and enjoy an evening with one of Oklahoma’s ‘Cast of Legends.’ Tickets are available for purchase at the Claremore Convention and Visitors Bureau, and Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs gift shop; they are $15 each and appetizers and refreshments are included.

Taste of Claremore will be returning Friday, April 6 from 6-8 pm at the Will Rogers Memorial Museum. This event will showcase local restaurants, caterers, and wineries while offering a “taste” of what Claremore has to offer.  Sample portions of great menu items, from entrees to desserts, will be offered; in addition guests can also enjoy wine tasting to compliment the food. William C. Barnes Children’s Advocacy Center will be selling tea, pop, and water to benefit their organization. Some of the other vendors who will be at the Taste this year include Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs, Country Inn Bed and Breakfast, The Pink House, Hammett House, Walke Brothers Meats, Elks Lodge, Papa John’s, Hot Mamas Deli, and two local wineries: Roberdes Family Vineyards and Oak Hills Winery. Claremore’s own JT and the Big Band will be providing entertainment for the Taste of Claremore this year.

Tickets for the Taste of Claremore are on sale now at the Claremore Convention and Visitors Bureau, 419 W. Will Rogers Blvd, The Nut House, Walke Brothers Meats, and Will Rogers Memorial Museum Gift Shop. Advance tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children 12 and under; tickets purchased at the door will be $12 for adults and $7 for children 12 and under.

“We are extremely proud to be invited to participate with the other great local restaurants in the Taste of Claremore. Our food and beverage team works hard to create great meals at the Dog Iron Saloon, as well as catering for special events, so we’re excited to be able to share samples with the public,” said Ali Aguilar, Marketing Director with Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs.

Destination Claremore’s presenting sponsors is RCB Bank and Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs. This event is a combined effort of Claremore’s tourist attractions; sponsored by Claremore Convention and Visitors Bureau, 1st Bank Oklahoma, GRDA, Claremore Daily Progress, Suburban Chevrolet, Comfort Inn, and WalMart. For more information about tickets or a full schedule of events for Destination Claremore call the Claremore Convention and Visitors Bureau at 918-341-8688 or visit www.visitclaremore.org.