Each year in rural Oklahoma there is a chance for the modern world to get a glimpse at Amish life at the annual Clarita Amish auction.
Note: You will notice very few Amish people in the photos. I was very careful to avoid taking photographs of the faces of Amish people out of respect for their religious views.
I live about 30 miles from an Amish community that is located near Clarita Oklahoma. It’s a small community that was founded in 1978 by a group of Amish from Ohio and Indiana.
Each year they have a huge auction to raise money for the Amish school. Even though it’s a small Amish community, the auction is huge. It was estimated before this year that it draws 10,000 people, however, I heard people say this year was the biggest they have seen.
My mom, a friend and I decided to go last minute. My mom and I had been wanting to but we forgot about it until we were coming home from our shopping trip the day before.
Our drive to the auction was a bit longer than it should have been as we were to busy chatting and missed our turn off, however because of this we found something very interesting while waiting in line to park on a back dirt road, a catfish head tied to a sign. Only in the middle of rural Oklahoma would you find something like that. We HAD to take a picture when there was less traffic on our way back.
It’s in the middle of nowhere with the closest town being Clarita, a town of 126 people or so, it’s an unincorporated town. The auction is out in a huge field by a few Amish homes.
They have the auction as well as hundreds of booths that are put on by Amish, Mennonites, and “English” (the term Amish use for non-Amish) and lots of yummy food.
Nothing I ate at the auction was good for me but it was all wonderful. I wish I had thought to take pictures of it. I had french fries, homemade ice cream, and most of a cinnamon roll. I only bought one thing as all the other things I wanted were a bit out of my price range, like the beautiful cherry bedroom set we all lusted over. I did get a super cute hand embroidered Christmas towel for my kitchen. I also came home with a lovely sunburn because I forgot to wear sunscreen, oops!
We also lusted over the beautiful handmade quilts that were being auctioned. However, they were far too much for any of us. The cheapest one we heard was $900, one went for over $2,500.
They were beautiful but at that price, I would be scared to use them. I can’t imagine how much time they spend on each of them, the hand stitching is so tiny and incredible.
If you live in Oklahoma or north Texas it’s very much worth the drive at least once. We had a blast and plan to go again next year. We also are talking about going to a town north of us, not far from Tulsa, Chouteau. There is a larger Amish community there and they have a few neat places we would like to visit. It’s a lot of fun to learn about and visit a very different culture in your own state.
The Clarita Amish Auction is the second Saturday in September every year. For more information visit Clarita’s website.