By Christian Toews
From the Feb. 2021 Biskinik
Imagine a beautiful park right outside your front door. You are watching a breathtaking sunset over the lake from your porch, cozied up with loved ones in a luxury lakeside villa. Great food and activities are all within walking distance. That may sound like a destination in Italy or France, but you can actually enjoy all of that right here in Oklahoma.
While taking a vacation to Europe might be out of the question right now, you do not need to leave the country, or the state for that matter, to enjoy an idyllic getaway. Located on Lake Eufaula in Pittsburg County is the resort town of Carlton Landing. The Choctaw Nation’s northern territory holds many unique places, and Lake Eufaula is no exception.
Lake Eufaula holds the title of Oklahoma’s largest lake. According to the official Oklahoma Travel and Tourism website, TravelOK.com, the lake covers 105,500 surface acres with 800 miles of shoreline.
According to the website, Carlton Landing was developed by Grant and Jen Humphreys.
For more than 15 years, Grant and Jen Humphreys had vacationed in and around Seaside, Florida. Seaside’s charm, convenience and sense of community were unlike anything they had found in Oklahoma. Still, an extended stay was needed to justify the 16-hour drive or airline tickets necessary to get there.
One day, as Grant was driving through land he had recently purchased on Lake Eufaula, he thought aloud, “What if we created a Seaside-like community right here on the lake and close to home?”
With that thought, the vision for Carlton Landing was born.
This beautifully developed shorefront community has been established for almost a decade now. While most homes in Carlton Landing are residents who want lakefront property or a vacation home on the lake, there are also many rental properties available for vacationers from around the country.
According to Sarah Tunnell, because the homes and rental properties in Carlton Landing are built with their driveways in the back of the house, your front door opens onto a green space. This makes it very safe for children.
Sarah Tunnell is the Director of Marketing for Carlton Landing and the Director of the Carlton Landing Foundation. She says they currently have around 300 homes in Carlton Landing, with 60 vacation rental properties.
There are many ways to enjoy your time at Carlton Landing. With parks, nature trails, pools, hot tubs, kayak rentals and more, there is never a lack of things to do.
If getting cozy inside is more of your style, various luxury properties are available to rent for the weekend or longer.
According to Tunnell, one of the main things people love about the community is the development’s thoughtfulness.
“Carlton Landing is designed for people rather than cars. Everything is designed for walkability. Kids can run out the front door straight onto a green space,” she said.
This convenience and abundance of open areas make it ideal for everyone to enjoy.
There are two main restaurants within the town. One is a top-notch pizza parlor with outdoor seating. The other restaurant is called The Meeting House and serves food and drinks for all age groups. These are both great places to relax and unwind after enjoying the lake, trails, parks and pools.
Once a month during the winter and every Saturday during the warmer months, Carlton Landing invites local vendors to set up pop-up shops. These include food vendors, boutiques, fresh veggies, other locally grown product and more.
If that isn’t enough to entice you to stop by sometime, Carlton Landing also hosts many community events throughout the year, such as movie nights out in a park, floral workshops and even concerts. All these events are open to residents, guests and the public.
You might be thinking about getting away for a weekend or looking for the perfect spot to build that summer house. Either way, Carlton Landing is an excellent choice. Without traveling far, you can experience the luxuries of lakefront property in a picturesque setting.
When asked what she would tell someone who was considering renting there, Tunnell said, “I’d say give it a try. There are so many people who have found it to be their happy place.”
Things to Do
- Arrowhead Area at Lake Eufaula State Park
- Taloka Valley Cultural Heritage Center
- Briar Patch Winery and Lamb’s Nut Farm
- Lake Eufaula
- Shelly’s Stigler Café
- Veteran’s General Store and Grille
- El Caporal
- Spring Garden Chinese Restaurant
- Eaton Hole Restaurant