We were in Sayre in early November 2022, as part of Big Trip #4.
Oklahoma, where the wind comes sweeping down the plain! We swept down the plain with the Airstream from Palo Duro Canyon in the Texas panhandle, headed toward Tulsa, and picked a dot on the map that seemed interesting for an overnight stop.
Online, Sayre looked like it had a cute downtown area with a neat-looking bar where we could have a drink to unwind from our long day of driving. In reality, Sayre does have a cute downtown with a striking City Hall housed in an old bank building built in 1905, and an impressive county courthouse from 1911 (which made a brief appearance in the 1940 movie The Grapes of Wrath)… but the bar we’d identified was permanently closed, and we didn’t see anywhere else we wanted to check out.
Sayre, an agricultural town, was founded in 1901 when the railroad arrived on its way out west. By the 1930s, oil and gas had been discovered nearby (that massive gas and oil field is also the world’s largest source of helium), and those industries were flourishing. In 1928, Route 66 was built through downtown Sayre, and businesses sprang up to support the tourists: restaurants, gas stations, and hotels, of course, but also a library, racetrack, rodeo grounds, and a massive city park with golf courses, a swimming pool, tennis courts, ball fields, a fishing pond, and an RV park where we’d end up camping so many years later.
We stayed at City of Sayre RV Park, inside Sayre City Park, a short drive from the downtown historic district. The RV park has 80 spots with power and water, a dump station, and refurbished restrooms (we didn’t use them), and all for only $12! When we visited, we were one of only a few other campers (one RV was an old school bus with a VW van grafted to the top! similar to this, but not quite so groovy) so our stay was very peaceful.
We were able to set up our DirecTV dish with no problems and watch our basketball team, and then we spent the rest of the evening at our picnic table. Our only gripe about the campground was that there were tiny burs and prickers evvvverywhere in the grass so we had to carry poor Bugsy around to protect her feet.
After breakfast at our picnic table we pressed on to Tulsa!