Top 10 Things to Do in Shawnee Oklahoma 

Shawnee is a mid-sized city in Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma, in the United States. It is the regional center for commerce and cultural activities and is famous for its Native American heritage.

The city is rich in culture and history, and you are certain to find a number of museums, including the Santa Fe Museum and the Mabee-Gerrer Museum of Art. 


Shawnee, also known as Bricktown City, is sometimes referred to as the birthplace of Oklahoma. With its historic downtown area with several buildings constructed with distinctive brick architecture, it provides a wonderful architectural viewing experience. 

From visiting any of the various museums to viewing art at the Community Art Gallery, there are many thrilling things to do in Shawnee, Oklahoma. 

So if you are new to traveling and you are hunting for things to do in Shawnee OK, look no further; we’ve got you covered. Here are the top 10 exciting things to do in the city. You might as well pack your bags now because you’re about to go on a wonderful adventure. 

Top 10 Things to Do in Shawnee Oklahoma 

1. Visit Citizen Potawatomi Nation’s Cultural Heritage Center.

Citizen Potawatomi Nation’s Cultural Heritage Center

If you enjoy a dose of history and culture and you are looking for what to do in Shawnee OK, then a visit to the Citizen Potawatomi Nations Cultural Heritage Center will give you quite the rush. 

The Citizen Potawatomi Nation Cultural Heritage Center, located in the southern part of Shawnee, Oklahoma, serves as a hub for preserving, sharing, and celebrating the history and art of the Citizen Potawatomi people. 

Visitors to the Citizen Potawatomi Nation Cultural Heritage Center can explore various aspects of Potawatomi culture, including traditional crafts, regalia, storytelling, language, and historical narratives. 

Strolling through the center while taking in the tribal history that spans from decades ago till now might not be heart pumping as skydiving, but is surely thrilling and is one of the most fun things to do in Shawnee OK.

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The center also has a Nation Eagle Aviary, which features a variety of eagles and other birds. The majestic nature of these beautiful creatures crowns the experience with warm satisfaction. 

2. Visit the Pottawatomie County Museum. 

things to do in Shawnee Oklahoma

Exploring a museum is always going to be exciting —at least for me and my fellow adventurers. There is something quite appealing about walking through the halls and viewing different exhibits, each with a unique story to tell, and the Pottawatomie County Museum exhibits tell quite the story.

The Pottawatomie County Museum showcases the history, culture, and heritage of Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma. The museum provides a glimpse into the region’s past and tells the story of the people’s history and culture through various exhibits. 

The museum houses an extensive collection of artifacts, photographs, documents, and exhibits curated to provide visitors with an immersive experience, making you feel like a part of the  Native American tribes that inhabited the region.

3. Enjoy amazing artwork at The Arts at 317.

Arts 317 building outdoor view.

If you are a fan of art –and why shouldn’t you be– viewing the mesmerizing collection of art at The Arts at 317 is one of the best things to do in Shawnee OK.

The Arts at 317 is a creative space that hosts various artistic events, performances, and exhibitions. It serves as a platform for local artists, musicians, and performers to showcase their talents and connect with the community.


The venue offers a range of artistic experiences, including an art gallery, a framing shop, giclee & photo printing services, and a  photography studio. If you stop by on the third Friday of the month, you can take part in the block party, where you can meet and greet local artists. 

And if you want a little more art, you can also check out the Community Art Gallery, which is not too far from there. 

4. Visit the Butterfly Garden at the Oklahoma State University (OSU)  Pott Co Extension. 

A butterfly perching on a flower in a garden.
Source: Kira

If you prefer the feasting on the beauty of nature than that on a canvas, Bricktown City has quite the itinerary for you. One of the most beautiful things to do in Shawnee Ok is viewing the Butterfly Garden at the OSU Pott Extension.

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The garden serves as a dedicated space for observing and learning about butterflies and their habitats.

It offers a peaceful and beautiful scenery where visitors can observe butterflies in their natural habitat and get an immersive experience surrounded by the beauty of nature.

It is also a great place for a romantic walk if you happen to be traveling with your partner. 

5. Get outdoors at Shawnee’s Twin Lakes Reservoir. 

Shawnees Twin Lakes

If you’re still out on what to do in Shawnee OK, another of the beautiful natural sceneries you can enjoy in the lovely city is Shawnee’s Twin Lakes Reservoir. 

The Shawnee Twin Lakes Reservoir is a pair of reservoirs located in Shawnee, Oklahoma, Lake Shawnee, and Lake Tecumseh. Combined, the two lakes cover over 1600 acres leaving you with a vast quantity of water for your exploration and enjoyment. 


Whether you want to go boat riding, fishing, or swimming, or you just want to kick back, relax and take in the stunning view of the sunset over the water, the Twin Lakes Reservoir has got you covered. 

6. Visit Sister City Park.

People having fun in sister city park

For Anime lovers looking for what to do in Shawnee OK, visiting Sister City Park is like a dream come true. 

Sister City Park is a public park located on Kickapoo Street in Shawnee. The scenic park serves as a tribute to Shawnee’s relationship with Nikaho, Japan. The park features Japanese-inspired elements and landscaping, creating a serene and peaceful atmosphere. 

You can take wonderful strolls through the Japanese Peace Garden and enjoy walking paths with beautifully landscaped gardens and serene ponds while pretending to be in Japan —or, better still, in an Anime.  

7. Visit the Arboretum on the campus of Oklahoma Baptist University.

An Arboretum of flowers. Things to do in Shawnee Oklahoma

Imagine being surrounded by a vast number of trees with lush greenery, the sounds of birds chirping and small animals scurrying, and the smell of leaves and nature slowly permeating your nose as the gentle breeze cools your face. Well, it doesn’t have to remain an imagination if you visit the Arboretum. 

The Arboretum on the Oklahoma Baptist University (OBU) campus is a beautiful outdoor space showcasing a diverse collection of 600 trees and plants and is easily one of the best things to do in Shawnee Oklahoma.


The OBU Arboretum is designed to provide a peaceful and scenic environment for visitors to enjoy nature and learn about various plant species. It offers various walking paths and seating areas where you can relax and immerse yourself in the natural surroundings.

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Make sure to wear your comfy hiking shoes because you’re about to have the time of your life.

8. Attend Shawnee’s legendary Halloween Festival, Monsters on Main.

Things to do in Shawnee Oklahoma.
Source: David Meindrey

No one does Halloween like the locals at Shawnee, and if you happen to be in the city in October, then you should join the thrill at the festival. 

The Monsters on Main Festival (formerly known as Boo and Bell) is an annual Halloween festival held on Bell Street in downtown Shawnee. The event features a wide range of family-friendly activities, including costume contests, live entertainment, trick-or-treating, food vendors, carnival games, and more. 

From the costumes to the thrill, music, and food, you may just want to plan your trip to Shawnee to fall in October.  Halloween parties are one of the most popular things to do in Shawnee Oklahoma.

9. Enjoy golfing at the Firelake Golf Course. 

Firelake golfcourse

For pro, amateur, or even about-to-be golfers, the Firelake golf course provides one of the best fields in the city to swing your golf clubs and sink your golf balls. If you play and are looking for what to do in Shawnee OK, then look no further.

The Firelake Golf Course is an 18-hole disc golf course in the northern part of Shawnee, OK. It is the most popular golfing destination located in the city, with a challenging yet enjoyable course for golfers of all skill levels. 

It also features a well-stocked pro shop where golf equipment can be bought and a clubhouse that features a restaurant or snack bar for refreshments. They also offer lessons and clinics if you are a beginner and you want to work on your swing. 

10. Visit Lifestyle Nails and Days Spa. 

A woman getting a spa treatment.
Source: The Anam

If you plan to go through the activities on this list in a day –kudos to you for having the strength to– then nothing beats rounding it off with a relaxing spa experience at the Lifestyle Nails and Days Spa. 

The spa offers a full menu of top-notch manicures, pedicures, facials, and more. With the ambiance, soothing music, soft lighting, and relaxing décor, who says only ladies can get their nails done?

Shawnee is one of the most exciting places to visit in the state of Oklahoma. From the beautiful and scenic natural views to the wild Firefight Balloon festival held in August every year, it is one of the best places to take a vacation, no matter the kind of traveler you are.

If swimming in the Twin Lakes Reservoir is too much for you, you can go splashing at the Shawnee Splash Water Park in the northeastern city. There are tons of fun things to do in Shawnee OK.

A quick bonus one; If you are into fancy fast cars and bikes, you should definitely check out one of Shawnee’s premier car shows and cruise-ins and thank me later.