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Renfro Lectureship premiers Killers of the Flower Moon private screening in Ponca City

Killers of the Flower Moon Red Carpet

Northern Oklahoma College and the Renfro Endowed Lectureship Series presented a private screening of the Martin Scorsese’s film “Killers of the Flower Moon” Wednesday, Oct. 18 at the historic Ponca Theatre in Ponca City.

The private, invitation-only screening was made possible by the Renfro Family Foundation, Northern Oklahoma College and the Northern Oklahoma College Foundation.  Over 700 attended the event.

Before the event, NOC Vice President for Community Relations and Development Sheri Snyder, Carl Renfro and Luke Garrison, President of the Poncan Theatre Company spoke to the full house at the Poncan Theatre.

“On behalf of Carl and Brenda Renfro and the Renfro Family Foundation along with Northern Oklahoma College and the NOC Foundation, we are so excited to provide today’s screening and reception as a part of the Renfro Endowed Lectureship Program,” Snyder said.

“The lectureship program was established in 2006 to provide cultural and community enrichment offerings in northern Oklahoma to include lectures or live performances on the campus of NOC Tonkawa or in the Ponca City area,” she added.  “Since its establishment, we have sponsored some amazing lectureships and concerts each year totaling 28 to date, with over 12,500 participants attending these highly popular events.”

Snyder said that in October 2018, NOC hosted Author David Grann and a sold-out crowd of individuals including local, county and state officials along with dignitaries from the Osage Nation and other tribal affiliations. It was that evening when Grann announced that his best-selling book “Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI” was going to be made into a movie.

Snyder invited Carl and Brenda to the stage to recognize and thank them for their generosity.  “Five years later and over seven months of discussions, planning, persistence, negotiations and a lot of sleepless nights, we are here today,” she said.  “This has been a great dream of Carl and Brenda to have this film shown in this historic Poncan Theatre and what a pleasure that all of you could join us today on this very special occasion.”

“I would also say, as a highlight to the 17-years of our Renfro Lectureship programs, today’s events mark another meaningful achievement of the Renfro’s – providing an opportunity for us all to participate in this screening prior to the national release date. This film is said to be one of the biggest movie productions ever undertaken in Oklahoma. But it is also chronicling one of the most horrific and until recently, often overlooked chapters in Oklahoma’s history.”

Carl Renfro added, “Brenda and I would also like to welcome you to this historic event. It will be a day that you will remember for many years. As we look into the past, and see the injustice that happened to our Native Americans, we can only hope that we can truthfully say, ‘NEVER AGAIN’.”

“There are too many people to recognize individually for this event,” he added. “However, let me say that our Killers of the Flower Moon Committee has worked tirelessly for several months to make this event a reality.” The planning committee consisted of the following members: Carl Renfro, Brenda Renfro, Sheri Snyder, Anita Simpson, Dr. Rick Edgington, Marsha Sanders, Luke Garrison, Danny Head, David Keathly, Osage Chief Geoffrey Standing Bear/Sheryl Decker, assistant, Judge Doug Revard, T.L. Walker, Mayor Homer Nicholson, Craig Stephensen, Kelsey Wagner, Theresa Sacket, Shelley Arrott, Erin Liberton, Representative Ken Luttrell, Representative John Pfeiffer, and Senator Bill Coleman.

Each guest was provided a free box of popcorn and soft drink.

Also, thanks to the private support of the Poncan Theatre Board, the Poncan Theatre Foundation Board and the Renfro Lectureship/Renfro Family Foundation, the equipment at the Poncan Theatre was upgraded to play the feature film allowing the Poncan to offer new feature, first run films to the Ponca City area for the first time since 2020.

After the event, guests enjoyed an amazing buffet reception with a meet and greet held at the Marland Mansion.

The feature film was released nationally on Friday, Oct. 20.