Whizbang Theatre

Main Street,
DeNoya, OK

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Hollywood cashed in on many a movie about rowdy boomtowns, but Whizbang, Oklahoma, was the roughest of them all. In 1921 the U.S. Postal Service refused to acknowledge such an undignified name as Whizbang and officially changed the town name to DeNoya.

Purpose built in 1921 the Whizbang Theatre was inside an attractive wood frame building. Combo movies/vaudeville played the pretty stage, but live acts performed before roughneck audiences at their own risk.

When surrounding oil fields began to go dry in 1939 so did the Whizbang Theatre. By 1942 DeNoya had gone from a boom town to a ghost town. Today only a couple of ruined buildings remain to mark where "Whizbang" DeNoya stood.

Please tell us what you know about Whizbang.

Contributed by Cactus Jack

Recent comments (view all 7 comments)

Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois
Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois on April 1, 2011 at 5:13 am

If you go to the Map for Denoya, it shows 3 locations, Albuquerque, Chicago and Pawhuska OK. None of course is correct. I guess this is because the town no longer exists?

As best as I can find out it was 1 ½ miles North & 1 ½ miles West of Shidler, OK or 1 mile straight East of Webb City, OK. I could not find names or numbers for roads at the Denoya site.

More info and photos are always welcome.

raybradley
raybradley on April 1, 2011 at 5:52 am

This site reports that Whizbang was located in Osage County, about one and a half miles north and one and a half miles west of present day Shidler, OK (Clark Gable was a roughneck in Shidler before heading out to Hollywood).
View link

To take a look at a good 1920s ariel view of Denoya on this site type in “whizbang"
View link

missmelbatoast
missmelbatoast on April 1, 2011 at 6:35 am

Off topic, but worth reading about; Bathsheba, OK, was a town created to be a utopia for women where no men were allowed.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bathsheba,_Oklahoma

seymourcox
seymourcox on April 2, 2011 at 8:52 am

This song was written to commemorate wild towns like Whizbang that gave a spirited fight, but lost the battle when finally it just “blowed away"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ky-HYHrm_oE

raybradley
raybradley on April 2, 2011 at 4:44 pm
  • marks the exact spot where Whizbang stood
    View link
raybradley
raybradley on April 2, 2011 at 5:02 pm

This link has photos of the Whizban/DeNoya site today
View link

Cimarron
Cimarron on January 18, 2014 at 6:21 pm

Back a number of years my old treasure hunting club obtained permission from the land owners to metal detect the Wizbang town site. The only visible remains were a few decayed foundations. About 15 of us searched the site and did find a number of early 1900’s coins. My find was a 1907 well worn penny..Anyway the land owners did provide some of the history to our group and yes, the name was just as it says as there were a number of the ladies in red that provided oil workers with entertainment..Interesting area.

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