Tulsa Cyclist Rides 600 Miles To Visit Historic Black Towns Across Oklahoma

A Tulsa man is riding his bike more than 600 miles across Oklahoma this week. The avid cyclist wants to use his journey to bring attention not to him, but to the places he visits along the way.

Friday, April 12th 2024, 9:43 pm

By: Matt Rahn


A Tulsa man is riding his bike more than 600 miles across Oklahoma this week. The avid cyclist wants to use his journey to bring attention not to him, but to the places he visits along the way.

Two guys riding bikes on the shoulder of Route 66 isn’t out of the ordinary, especially on a bright, sunny day.

"That's my happy place, when I'm on my bike just riding look at this day, beautiful weather, and we're just out here in the sun having fun," says Osbourne Celestain.

For Osbourne and his friend Eyakem, it's more than just a ride. This is a journey to 13 historic all-black towns in Oklahoma.

"I'm a cyclist so doing what I can is riding my bike to these towns to encourage other cyclists to come here and ride through these towns and help generate some revenue for these communities,” says Celestain.

"I think it's an important cause he's a great guy," says Randy Anderson.

Anderson follows the cyclists in his truck, making sure they stay safe on busy roads.

"Yeah we've got all kinds of tools supplies everything to keep them going," says Anderson.

The 600-mile bike ride to all 13 towns started in Black Wall Street and will end there after a week of tough cycling.

It's not an easy ride, but Osbourne and Eyakem are passionate about sharing the heritage of small towns like Boley, a community recently photographed by Eyakem.

"At one time there was more black-owned land in Oklahoma than the whole country combined, so Oklahoma owns that black town narrative," says Celestain.

Osbourne says his tour may not make a huge impact when it comes to awareness, but he says for a man turning 66 years old this week, it's what he was called to do.

"I ride bikes, I can take what I love and do what I can with what I have."

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