Robert’s Roast Report

Months of preparation could have been deep-sixed by illness, ice and Murphy’s Law, yet more than 300 people braved the slick roads to “roast, boast and toast” one of Tulsa’s favorite sons at the Tulsa Expo Square Pavilion on Tuesday.  Attendance exceeded reservations at the event to honor Robert “Bob” Dick for 43 years of public service.

Reporter Kevin Canfield covered the “surprise party” – Dick knew something was planned, but not the particulars – for the Tulsa World.  “The folks who put together the program for Bob Dick’s send-off got it right,” he said.  “This was less of a roast of the longtime public servant than a chance to toast the man and boast of his many accomplishments.”

But coordinating a “surprise party” for a top-level public is a near-impossible task, and the event’s organizing committee drew on key creative talents behind the scenes to make the up-front evening a memorable one.  Graphic designer Kristy Smith, of event sponsor Program Management Group, LLC, created the full-color, eight-page program which each attendee received, as well as the video montage shown during The Garage Band’s lively rendition of a “borrowed” Chuck Berry classic, “Bobby D. Goode.”  The song – which some attendees asked to purchase – was recorded in one take at Drapp Studios in West Tulsa.

View song and tribute video

The sound system was provided by the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame and Joe Richey of Steele Productions ran the board.

Kimberly Cooper’s Academy Award-themed decorations were fantastic, complete with a grand entrance and red carpet walkway.  The Tulsa Expo Pavilion’s Hollywood sky was clouded by huge, helium-filled clusters of colorful balloons, anchored to table centerpieces by film reels and glittering stars.

Expo Square personnel were especially helpful in pulling the separate vendors together, and Pavilion event coordinator Julie Cohenour repeatedly exhibited the knowledge, patience, and good humor that kept the committee of volunteers focused on site.  She also corralled donations, including the draping for the stage and entry tables, supplied by Midwest Decorating.  

The roast was recorded for the Dick family by Alan Stroup of Medialink, Inc.  The Metro Tulsa Chamber of Commerce’s Don Sibley, one of several photographers snapping the festivities, also contributed time and projection equipment.  Photos by Marc Rains, a Tulsa Today and freelance photographer, accompany this story.

Last Updated ( Saturday, 20 January 2007 )