Elk Valley Brewing On Hudson Ave. And The Maiden Voyage Of The OKC Streetcar


In the recently published  “Our Towns” authors James and Debra Fallows wrote of how  often one of the indicators of rebirth in a community is the presence of a brewery that produces local beer that contributes to town’s sense of identity and revitalization.  And in Oklahoma City such a brewery, the Elk Valley Brewing Company, is found in a location  at 1210 Hudson Avenue  in a structure whose façade consists of black tiles that  are similar to the ones featured in  a retail establishment from a previous era   on  Commerce Street   in the Capital Hill area in South Oklahoma City, and  its concrete  flooring recalls a previous time   of tiled flooring  that have left a lasting  imprint of where they were in place. But the bar itself is indicative of the modern era,  with an array of numerous  taps that dispense a wide variety of beers of different quality and alcoholic content with names such as “Tenkiller,”  “Magic Juice,” and other memorable titles.   It is located in a building situated near   the renovated Seiber Apartments on Hudson Avenue, and it has been explained that both the apartments and what is now  the brewery where constructed by members of the Seiber family who were developers in Oklahoma City in the period shortly after Oklahoma statehood.  During the holiday season, the  first floor of the Seiber Building hosts the Pambe Ghana Market  which contributes to the festive atmosphere currently  found there.
The Elk Valley  Brewing Company   offered what was described as a ‘preview opening”  on Friday, December 14 2018  to commemorate the maiden voyage of the Oklahoma City streetcar that is now traversing an approximately    5.6 mile route in  Oklahoma’s Capital City. And an adjacent building, which was formerly a movie theater  with  a marque that was also constructed by members of the industrious Seiber family , is currently undergoing renovation and will be hosting a restaurant, specialty shops, and other establishments that will  soon be part of the on going  Midcity renaissance. It’s official opening is set for December 22. The streetcar has a nearby stop that is designated N. Hudson and that site also offers a flotilla of  small scooters for impatient travelers who  don’t want to wait the estimated ten minutes that elapse between stops at that location. William Faulkner wrote  in 1927 of the New Orleans  street car that “From Royal Street there cam a  hum of a trolley that rose to a staggering clatter, passed on and leaving an interval  filled with the gracious sound of inflated rubber on asphalt, like a tearing of endless silk.” But the Oklahoma City  streetcar is largely silent, except for the ringing bell sounded when it makes when it pauses to pick up passengers.
The  designated stops also includes a map of the route that the vehicle traverses in the city, and one wonders if   tee shirts with that route embossed on them will become popular just as the souvenir shirts from London, England ,that feature that city’s underground rail  routes have.
The Elk Valley Brewing Company has its main  location on N. Meridian Avenue of off Interstate 40, but  shrewdly decided to open a retail location in the Midcity area  in recognition of the increasing  appeal of that area. And the Curbside Chronicle publication told of how the streetcar was brought back to Oklahoma City as a result of  the farsighted Jeff Bezdek’s decision  to include funding for such an undertaking in the MAPS 3  that he played a role in developing that was approved by the Oklahoma City electorate in 2009.  While some critics  have  worried that the streetcar system may just be  a tourist attraction that will  really not address the mass transit needs of much of the citizenry, a recent announcement by Mayor David Holt about  a federal grant obtained by Oklahoma’s senior  lawmaker Senator   James Inhofe that  will fund an expedited bus service, as well as the recent   creation of a regional transport authority for the Oklahoma City metropolitan area,  suggests that the streetcar and the bus system financed by that grant   will  possibly in time provide an intermodal mass transit system that will serve  Oklahoma City’s residents as well as  commuters from  it’s suburbs.


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