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Center Of The Universe Festival Kicks Off Downtown

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Tulsan Eric Himan and his band are set to kick things off on Guthrie Green Stage at 5 p.m., and he's just one of 70 acts who will be playing over the next two days. Tulsan Eric Himan and his band are set to kick things off on Guthrie Green Stage at 5 p.m., and he's just one of 70 acts who will be playing over the next two days.
Friday's headliner is OneRepublic, headed by another native Tulsan, Ryan Tedder. Friday's headliner is OneRepublic, headed by another native Tulsan, Ryan Tedder.
Mason's owner, Dan Mason, said he's been preparing for the festival since he opened his bar. Mason's owner, Dan Mason, said he's been preparing for the festival since he opened his bar.
While the near triplActs like OneRepublic, OK GO and Neon Trees are expected to bring in more than 40,000 visitors over two days. While the near triplActs like OneRepublic, OK GO and Neon Trees are expected to bring in more than 40,000 visitors over two days.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

It's opening night of a brand new festival, making downtown Tulsa the Center of the Universe.

While the near triple digits temperatures deterred crowds early Friday afternoon acts like OneRepublic, OK GO and Neon Trees are expected to bring in more than 40,000 visitors over two days.

Several streets in the Brady Arts District are closed to make room for art, merchandise, and food and drink vendors.

The festival covers a large area, and with such a big turnout expected, Tulsa Police have prepared for whatever may come.

We spoke with Tulsa Police Major Tracie Lewis, who said around 30 off duty officers have been hired for the next two days.

She said, along with watching for suspicious activity, they won't allow visitors to bring in backpacks or coolers.

"I bet you we have more issues with the heat than anything else, and then as it gets later in the night - this thing is going very, very late - we'll have issues with drunks and stuff, but I'm not really worried about it. We're not here to throw people in jail," Lewis said.

7/17/2013 Related Story: Organizers Prepare For Tulsa Center Of The Universe Music Festival

Tulsan Eric Himan and his band kicked things off on Guthrie Green Stage at 5 p.m., and he's just one of 70 acts who will be playing over the next two days on the two main stages and several smaller stages inside Brady District venues.

After the bands on the two large stages wrap up, 14 different bars in the Brady District will have live bands playing.

We caught up with Himan as his band was doing a sound check.

"It's a tremendous honor to be able to kick it off, especially on one of the brand new stages of this whole Brady District, the Guthrie Green," Himan said. "I trust that it'll be an annual event, that it'll just keep getting bigger and bigger, and more well known."

"If you don't like one, go to the other. It's really fun," said Tulsan Devonte Thibodeaux.

Denise and Arron Bentley drove in from Kansas, and since their favorite band (Mutemath) plays Saturday, they're spending Friday night checking out the other attractions in the Brady District.

Like many of the Brady business owners, that's music to Dan Mason's ears.

"It's amazing," the owner of new bar, Mason's, said. "We've been preparing for the last two weeks for this festival, basically since we've opened."

Along with the shops, there are dozens of vendors, food trucks, and of course a splash pad if you need a break from the heat.

Friday's headliner is OneRepublic, headed by another native Tulsan, Ryan Tedder.

Admission to the festival is free, but you still need to download a ticket. You can also upgrade and purchase tickets that will get you closer to the stages. VIP tickets give you access to Cain's Ballroom.

Go here for the full lineup and ticket information

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