A Baby and a Burger

Posted: March 19, 2020 in Uncategorized

Easter is fast approaching, and I wanted to share with you one of the coolest Easter opportunities this state has on offer. Oklahoma has what claims to be the longest-running passion play in the United States, “The Prince of Peace,” located at the Holy City of the Wichitas north of Lawton.

This passion play has been held annually since 1926, when it was instituted by a Lawton pastor in the hills above the city. Now, it is a major tourist attraction for the area. Each year, thousands of people gather on the hillside overlooking the city to wait for dusk and the play to begin. They watch the actors in the mock-up village below, and listen to the narrative over the loudspeakers and on a simultaneous radio broadcast.

I attended this once as a child. My family made an all-day affair of it. We showed up with a couple thousand people in the afternoon, picnicked on the hillside, and my brother and I drifted off to sleep as the play commenced. I’ve visited the Holy City a couple of times as an adult. It is open year-round for visitors, and there is a small chapel you can tour. The art on the inside is decent if you like angels, and the colors are taken from the pigments of Oklahoma flowers.

Photo from inside the chapel taken by James Fleeting

Photo from inside the chapel taken by James Fleeting

This year there are two performances of the passion play, the two Saturdays before Easter, starting at 8:30 p.m. If you go, dress for the cool mountain evenings.

The Holy City’s official website has a short documentary on the history of the location and the pageant play.

I really do recommend checking out the Holy City in the off season as well. Not only is the chapel quite pretty, but you can visit the other (dare I say better?) attraction in the area, Meers.

Meers claims to be a town, but it is actually just a couple of houses and a store/restaurant. But Meers is famous for that store. The Meers Store is considered one of the great food attractions of the United States. It has been featured on a Food Network special on the top American Restaurants and named one of the top 3 burgers in America by Bon Appetit Magazine.

I’ve been to Meers a few times. I won’t say it is in the top 3 burgers in America. I’m not even sure it is the best burger in Oklahoma. I’m partial to the El Reno onion burgers and the beauty that is S&B’s in OKC. Still, Meers is worth the pilgrimage, and if you are in the Lawton area during lunch one day, you’d be nuts not to make the drive out. Meers makes their burgers with grass-fed longhorn and very good ingredients, and you can’t beat the place for ambiance. It looks like it is about to fall down around you. The floors aren’t even level.

Meers burger

A Meers burger

My wife visited Meers recently with some friends, and this picture is a variation on their Cowboy Burger. I’m a purist myself. I’d never change what they consider to be the best version of what they have to offer, especially when everyone agrees that do it so well.

If you are wonder why that burger is cut into quarters and on a weird metal plate. That’s a pie tin, and the burger comes with a pound of beef. They quarter it to make it manageable.

The burger may be large, but you have to save room for the sides and desert. They have some pretty good fried pickles, and the homemade peach cobbler topped with homemade ice cream is exceptional. I hear good things about the banana pudding and micro-brew beer as well.

Yes, that's as a good as it looks.

Yes, that’s as a good as it looks. No, you can’t eat it alone.

I would recommend visiting the Holy City of the Wichitas and Meers on the same day, if and only if you are going to the Holy City during the off season. I wouldn’t even bother with trying to get in the door of Meers on the two Saturdays before Easter or on a major vacation time like Memorial Day or Fourth of July weekends.

Comments
  1. […] covered in depth, and of the things we’ve also written about, like the Spiro Mounds and the Holy City of the Wichitas, this site had the time and print space to go into a lot more detail. Nevertheless, writer Devon […]

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