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Oklahoma oilman thinks Bob Dylan can save Tulsa

He's the same billionaire who bought Dylan's secret archive.

A Bob Dylan fanatic's dream is coming true in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where devotees will soon be able to stroll through the singer's near-legendary archives in a new museum. 

But in truth, the "dream" actually belongs to a local billionaire who isn't much of a Dylan fan.

George Kaiser – who was behind the purchase of the songwriter's archives – believes the forthcoming Bob Dylan Center will help revive an old oil city that's been on the wane for generations. 

His bold and "quirky" plan is the subject of an in-depth Washington Post piece, which you can read right here. 

As the paper notes, Kaiser, an oilman and philanthropist, has spent hundreds of millions of dollars revitalizing his city through new public parks, arts programs, and anti-poverty initiatives.

And though he's "not not a fan" of Dylan, he doesn't mind spending additional millions building a Dylan "mecca" if it makes Tulsa "more energized, a draw for talented younger people" and "the next cool city.”

The latest on the Bob Dylan Center

As GoMN has reported, Kaiser, along with the University of Tulsa, spent a lot of money last year acquiring Dylan's "secret" archive, with plans to eventually build a permanent exhibit space.

Currently, you have to be a researcher with a "qualified research project" to access the vast archive – which includes handwritten lyrics, photographs, contracts, letters, video and audio recordings, and much more. 

But that permanent exhibit space, to be a museum open to the public, is fast in the works. 

Earlier this year, the George Kaiser Family Foundation started taking architectural proposals for the Bob Dylan Center site, which is an "existing building in Tulsa's Brady Arts District," the Rolling Stone reported.

The Washington Post says it's set to open in 2019.

Quite appropriately, it would be near the city's Woody Guthrie Center, named for Dylan's songwriting hero.

This story is part of our Best of the Web section – which is just cool stuff we find online and want to share with you.

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