OK40 Ranch Owner Debbie Hunter.
January 2018: Just mere minutes outside Tulsa County in Mounds, Oklahoma, sits an unassuming ranch that upon first look you might just pass by. But, once you arrive at the OK40 Ranch, you may never want to leave.
First opened three years ago by owners Debbie Hunter and her husband, Eddie, this country oasis was first meant to be a Bed & Breakfast and wedding venue. Over time, it not only hosts weddings, but as Debbie puts it,
“ANYTHING YOU CAN IMAGINE.”
The ranch boasts two Bed and Breakfast cabins, each of which sleep six, an authentic Teepee (which also sleeps six) and the main house, or hacienda, as Debbie calls it. But serving as a B & B is only the beginning to the OK40 Ranch. “We have a spot for bonfires by the cabins, two catch-and-release fishing ponds, a place for archery, trails to hike, a spa, a theater room, and horses to ride on,” says Debbie, who says they will be adding a bunkhouse soon that will sleep up to 28 people.
Besides weddings, Debbie has hosted family reunions, proms, girl weekends, church camps, line-dance lessons and as she states, “If you can dream it, I can make it happen.” The reception hall alone has space for 150 people and that doesn’t count the patios on both sides of the hall, each able to comfortably host 60 to 80 people.
Debbie is a jack of all trades and very little intimidates her or her boundless energy. “We’ve had everything from a Twilight-themed wedding to someone requesting if we can host a scrapbook retreat.” A self-described “organized hoarder”, Debbie and her crew have everything you need for any type of event you propose. The location and service sets OK40 Ranch aside from other venues. “I always tell my clients I’ll be as involved as you want me to be,” Debbie points out.
A graduate of Oklahoma State University, Debbie majored in architectural interior design. Before opening OK40, she owned and managed her own floral shop. “I knew it was time to slow down, so my husband and I purchased this land and designed it all ourselves. The hacienda, which sleeps up to eight, is the main house and was designed by Debbie herself. The house, inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright, is decorated entirely from local estate sales or repurposed materials found around the ranch. Debbie says that when she cleaned up the property, she threw out less than one full dumpster in order to reuse everything she could. Both cabins as well as the reception hall also have been designed with repurposing in mind. The bathrooms have wood and metal found from the old Ranch and everything in between Debbie has found by scouring local sales. The authenticity of the feel is second to none and no detail has gone unnoticed.
“We want everyone to leave here with a unique experience,” says Debbie, who vows that her favorite part of wedding planning is “seeing the look on a dad or groom’s face when the bride is revealed. That’s when you know all the sweat and tears have paid off.”
One important concept to Debbie was to make sure it was a family-oriented Ranch, but probably the most impressive aspect of the Ranch is that Debbie has set it up to become a nonprofit therapeutic horseback riding ranch once she and Eddie are gone.
Giving back is something she takes to heart. She works with the local schools to help provide for children who may have otherwise gone without. One room was stockpiled with Angel Tree gifts for local kids. “Volunteering is my favorite award,” explaining “awards and acknowledgement don’t mean anything if you are not willing to share your blessings with others.”
Although she states she’d rather be in the background planning your next event, you can’t help but feel her enthusiasm for whatever it’s going to take to make your dreams come true. Rates for the Bed & Breakfast can be found on their web site, and there is also a link to email Debbie about planning your next event. Whatever your desire, she’s certain to make sure every last element is carried out and you won’t leave without being overjoyed at the unique experience she has planned.
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