Tag Archives: events

Revamped Radio

March 18, 2017 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

When the band Train came to Omaha’s Baxter Arena for a concert in December 2016, there were plenty of flashing lights and excited fans. “But when the lights go out and the audience starts screaming, there’s no rush like it in the world,” says Andy Ruback, general manager of NRG Media. Ruback knows a great deal about screaming fans—when a big concert comes to town the likelihood is that Ruback had his hand in the planning. His role as general manager has evolved over the years from managing radio stations to include managing events brought to town by NRG Media Live.

The business is a natural fit for NRG, which owns stations ranging from Power 106.9 to 1290 KOIL. The company was looking to the future for broadcasting and leaning toward live shows as a way to increase profitability. NRG used their strengths in connecting people to music to expand into the business of concert production. With the radio stations’ on-air talent knowing their listeners’ preferences, the media company naturally knew what acts had potential to bring in revenue, and which ones might not.

Ruback came to Omaha from Lincoln, where he served as general manager for their NRG stations. Upon his arrival at the NRG offices in Omaha in 2012, Ruback went full speed ahead. He says the intention was never to focus on live shows over radio shows; rather, he called his plans a method for “diversifying for growth.”

Concert production is a challenge that Ruback gladly accepted, but in it, found unique bumps in the road. Some of those bumps included special requirements, such as permits, that needed the legal team’s help. Shock rocker Alice Cooper, for example, required the team to acquire special insurance because of the pyrotechnics involved with his show. Ruback and his team figured out how to get the right insurance, and now know who to ask the next time someone wants to light up fireworks onstage.

Ruback says some of the more surprising challenges he and his team have faced come from smaller, more routine details.

“I would say it’s more about the crowd experience logistics,” Ruback says. “How do we try to work with the arenas to make sure there’s enough concessions on the floor? What should be the entry ticket price? What should be the price for the front row?”

Logistics is the simplest description for the business of producing concerts. Is the specific artist available at the time? Is there enough interest in this artist to fill the seats? Is a venue available on the day needed?

“We could have the great idea, and the right price, but there could be a UNO hockey game and a Lancers game on the night we want, and we’re out of luck,” Ruback says.

It is a revenue stream in which many community businesses desire to participate, and there are many ways for them to participate, including attaching their name to experiences such as meet-and-greets with the band before or after the show, and attaching their name to souvenirs. Attendees at the Train concert, for example, vied for flashing bracelets and cups branded with a sponsor’s logo. Signage prominently displayed throughout Baxter Arena featured sponsor logos.

The scenario is beneficial to everyone involved: the band gets to play to a well-attended venue, the fans get to enjoy the band, and the sponsors get to present their message in an effective way.

“On that day, no other media group is producing a concert,” Ruback says. “So you’re looking at content that advertisers want to be a part of, but no other client can do.”

The diversification proved wildly successful. Ruback says that since 2014, more than 100,000 people have attended an NRG Media Live event. Associate athletic director for University of Nebraska at Omaha Mike Kemp enjoys his business dealings with NRG Media Live and says that when Ruback puts on a concert at Baxter Arena “… it’s not just a concert—it’s an event. He has great vision and ideas and that’s the true charm of what he does.”

“I think NRG Media does a great job of engaging the community to get behind the events,” adds Kemp. NRG Media has the ability to promote coming shows using the radio stations on their roster and their strong social media presence. This equals solid attendance numbers at concerts and happy sponsors.

“Andy’s full of energy and great ideas,” Kemp says of Ruback. “He’s an honest guy with great enthusiasm for what he does.” Rubak’s vision has evolved NRG Media into much more than an organization simply running local radio stations. In fact, the next time there is a popular concert in town, there is an excellent chance that Ruback can be found there, smiling and enjoying the rush.

Visit nrgmedia.com for more information.

This article was printed in the Spring 2017 edition of B2B.

The Catholic Issue

February 21, 2017 by

The March/April issue of Omaha Magazine hits the streets just as Oscar season comes to a close. Meanwhile, the subject of Omaha’s best-known Oscar-winning story is up for an even greater recognition—sainthood. A tribunal from the Vatican is currently scrutinizing Boys Town’s founder, the late Father Edward J. Flanagan, for canonization.

Boys Town (the movie) tells a fictionalized story of the real-life Father Flanagan. Released in 1938, the movie was actually filmed on the grounds of Boys Town. Spencer Tracy won the Academy Award for Best Actor with his portrayal of Father Flanagan, and Tracy’s Oscar sits in a protective case at the Boys Town Hall of History.

The Village of Boys Town was engulfed by Omaha’s westward sprawl. But Boys Town itself has grown significantly, too, with satellite locations throughout the metro (and nationwide). This year, Boys Town enters its 100th year of operation.

Should Pope Francis designate Father Flanagan to be a saint, the Village of Boys Town would become a place of holy pilgrimage. Add that to Omaha’s list of annual pilgrimages (a cherry—or maybe “halo” would be a better word—on top of Berkshire Hathaway’s annual shareholder meeting and the College World Series).

Although Father Flanagan’s earthly remains now rest in a tomb adjoining Dowd Chapel on campus, if he is canonized a saint, the village would need a shrine to accommodate the throngs of devout pilgrims (to avoid disrupting the normally calm chapel that was designed by local Omaha architect Leo A. Daly according to Father Flanagan’s own instructions).

Omaha Magazine’s March/April cover story tells the tale of Father Flanagan’s life and his ongoing canonization process. With St. Patrick’s Day, Lent, and Easter taking place during this issue’s distribution period, the magazine has taken on a noticeably Catholic theme.

There is a guide to Omaha’s St. Patrick’s Day bar crawl, a guide to six of the best Lenten fish fries, and a story about the mysterious stained glass windows of St. Mary Magdalene Church (which was also designed by Omaha architect Leo A. Daly).

The cover story’s author, Carol Crissey Nigrelli, converted to Catholicism one year ago on Easter. She has become the magazine’s go-to writer for all subjects Catholic. Nigrelli wrote about the last nuns of Duchesne Academy in the September/October 2016 issue. She also profiled the University of Notre Dame’s president in “From Omaha to Notre Dame” for the cover story of our November/December 2015 issue.

Omaha Magazine’s 35th Anniversary

A publication titled Omaha Magazine has existed in Omaha since the 19th century. The earliest version, according to publisher Todd Lemke, was published in 1890. It was a satirical newsprint publication in magazine format, he says.

Lemke entered Omaha publishing in March 1983 with the first issue of City Slicker, the precursor to his current Omaha Magazine. This March issue of Omaha Magazine marks the 35th anniversary of Lemke’s career in magazine publishing. That history explains why Omaha Magazine’s issue numbering starts with No. 1 in March.

When CitySlicker was initially in distribution, another Omaha Magazine was on the streets. Lemke says the previous Omaha Magazine—no relation to the current magazine—started in the 1970s and folded a few years after he had entered the local media market.

The Omaha Magazine brand name came available in the late 1980s. Lemke secured the copyright, and the first issue of his Omaha Magazine came out in 1989. The rest is history.

Today, Omaha Magazine Ltd. is the parent company of Omaha Publications, which also produces several other local community-focused magazines such as Encounter, B2B Magazine, Omaha Magazine’s Family Guide, and assorted custom publishing products.

For 35 years, Lemke’s Omaha Magazine (previously known as City Slicker) has told the stories of Omaha people, culture, and events. Thanks for reading!

Best of Omaha Festival

December 1, 2014 by
Celebrate all that Omaha has to offer with Omaha Magazine’s annual Best of Omaha Festival  from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 5, at Baxter Arena.
Come check out the top voted businesses, chosen by you, the public. With eight different categories: nightlife, family, dining, household, health and beauty, retail, services, and transportation there is something for everyone.
We believe that with our wonderful sponsors and exciting NEW non-profit partner (4-H youth development program of Douglas and Sarpy counties), this festival will be the best one yet!
One hundred percent of the proceeds from the paid door cash revenue will go directly to the Douglas-Sarpy 4-H Club.* Come out and support your local 4-H club, while listening to live entertainment and trying out delicious food and beverage samples. You won’t want to miss this!
*Excludes VIP and Complimentary tickets.
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Inaugural Best of Omaha Festival 2014

October 11, 2014 by

Thank you to all who came out and supported our Inaugural Best of Omaha Festival!

Thank you to all our sponsors and entertainers!

  • Ralston Arena, Media Sponsor
  • KETV, Media Sponsor
  • Kinky Liqueur, Sponsor
  • Singer and Songwriter, Karen Sokolf Javitch
  • Mr. Memories, Joe Taylor
  • Singer, Joyce Torcha
  • Comedians from OK Party! Mike Perry and Kyle O’Reilly
  • The Omaha Street Percussion
  • Sammy Sunshyne and Troupe

For more information on Events by Omaha Magazine contact Erin Cox, Event Director for Omaha Magazine at erin@omahamagazine.com.

 

2014 Vendor Info

August 1, 2014 by

Mark Your Calendars

  • Booths go on sale at a first come first serve basis: September 2, 2014
  • Early bird discount rate deadline: September 15, 2014
  • Exhibit booth reservation deadline: September 30, 2014
  • Final booth assignment: October 3, 2014

Booth Rates

  • Standard Rate: $800 (Non-advertiser without an approved festival experience*)
  • Experience Rate: $700 (Participating with an approved experience*)
  • Advertiser Rate: $600 (Current contract advertiser in the 2015 Results issue of Omaha Magazine and participating with approved experience*)

Early bird special: $100 off rate from September 1 – 15th

*An experience is something that adds to the festival’s atmosphere and interacts with attendees. (Food sampling, a game, a demonstration of your services, etc.) Contact Omaha Magazine’s event director for suggestions!

Booth amenities – an extra $250 value!

  • One 10’ wide x 10’ deep draped exhibit area
  • One 8’ skirted table and two chairs
  • Electricity
  • Wi-Fi Connection
  • Two exhibit hall registration for booth staff (additional can be purchased at discounted rate)
  • Inclusion in the festival program booklet given to all attendees
  • Inclusion in current exhibitors on Best of Omaha Festival website
  • Access to all exhibitor contact information
  • Two free tickets to the exclusive BestFest After Party

Exhibit Hall – Dates & Time

October 10, 2014

  • 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.  Floor set up
  • 2:00 -4:00 p.m. Special request exhibitor move-in

October 11, 2014

  • 8 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Exhibitor Move In
  • 3:00 – 8:00 p.m. Exhibit Hall Open Hours
  • 8:00 p.m. Exhibitor move-out

Best Fest After Party featuring eNVy – BUY TICKETS HERE!

Join us for an evening of hor dourves, drinks and live music to celebrate your win of Best of Omaha! Each exhibitor will receive two free tickets. Additional tickets can be purchased for $5 at the link above. You do not have to be an exhibitor to attend.

  • Exclusively for Best of Omaha winners
  • 8:30 – 10:00 p.m. in the banquet hall

Payment and Cancellation Policy

Booth payment:
Payment methods for booth reservations include credit cards, purchase orders and direct billing (for payment by check) and are due by booth reservation deadline. Booth will not be reserved or assigned without payment.

Booth cancellation:
Omaha Magazine must receive cancellation requests by the booth reservation deadline of September 30, 2014. Written notifications are accepted via email or fax. Cancellation request via voicemail are not accepted.

  • Exhibit booth cancellations received by booth reservation deadline will receive a refund of paid fees minus a $300 process fee.
  • Cancellation received after the Cancellation Deadline of September 30, 2014 will not be issued a refund.
  • Send Exhibit Booth cancellations via email (erin@omahamagazine.com) or fax: 402.884.2001.

Additional information:

Erin Cox, Event Director
erin@omahamagazine.com

Très Johnson

February 4, 2014 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

Très Johnson is pouring water in a slow, circular motion around a paper filter resting just inside a glass jar. Inside the filter, coffee grounds are mixing with the water, tiny bubbles forming on the surface of the gritty liquid. The glass chamber below collects the drippings of fresh, dark coffee.

At 1010 S. Main St. in Council Bluffs, (drips) coffee shop serves only pour-over coffee.

Johnson had wanted to open a coffee shop almost since he managed one back in 1995. Unfortunately, “the cost of the machinery prohibits just jumping in,” he says.

He and his girlfriend, Amber Jacobsen, took a trip to San Francisco about a year and a half ago. There, they visited Blue Bottle Coffee, which does pour-over coffee—Johnson’s first taste of it.

“It was the best cup of coffee I’d had,” Johnson says. “And I realized it took a smaller amount of equipment to be able to make it. You just had to boil water, have the filter and the stand. And I actually use glass Ball jars instead of a stand.”

Re-inspired by this method, Johnson opened (drips) on July 1, 2013.

This particular brew is Nightingale Blend, roasted by Beansmith Coffee in Omaha, and prepared in a personal pour-over, which has four drips. He also uses a Chemex frequently, with a single drip.

“I do have some French presses and an AeroPress,” Johnson says. “But I’ve found that the pour-over just tastes better. The people that insist on French press have tried the pour-over, and now they don’t insist on the French press anymore.”

A coffee shop is the perfect place to be on a day like this—cold and rainy. Amber is doing a puzzle. Two locals are enjoying their pour-overs and accusing Amber of cheating by looking at the photo on the puzzle box.

(drips) is located in a mixed-use space occupied by artists, including low-income artist housing. The coffee shop definitely has an artsy feel, probably because Johnson is both a painter and a DJ.

One half of the wall space displays Johnson’s art. The other half is space for rotating guest shows.

For Valentine’s Day, (drips) will display the work of approximately 20 local artists in a show called “Lovesong,” named for The Cure song. A Brian Tait show will open mid-February.

The Cure is already present in lyrics painted onto Johnson’s pieces. He often uses stencils to inscribe lyrics from bands like Depeche Mode and Joy Division—words that “people from the ’80s, if they know the song, they connect with.”

He describes his style as “heavily influenced by street art, and then some post-World War II art thrown in.”

“When I’m tired of painting and waiting for paint to dry, I produce music,” he says with a laugh.

He DJs a set every Sunday night for an online radio station, lowercasesounds.com. “Then that’s what I listen to generally throughout the week when I’m painting,” he says. “I listen to it over and over again, because I usually listen to newer music or music that I just picked up. I listen and paint.”

Johnson describes his sound as “deep house and ambient.” He DJs Silicon Prairie News events, like Big Omaha, and he has recently released EPs on the label Deep Site Space.

“There’s always been a combination of the music in the art,” Johson says. “They’re both something that I let myself go into. I don’t really sweat it. I just let it all flow.”

Calendar of Events: September/October 2013

September 3, 2013 by

ART & MUSEUM EXHIBITS

A Bug’s World
Through September 8 at Omaha Children’s Museum, 500 S. 20th St.
A larger-than-life interactive exhibit that allows children to experience what it is like to be a bug. Tu-F/10am-4pm; Sat/9am-5pm; Sun/1pm-5pm. $9 adults & kids, $8 seniors, free for members and children 2 & under. 402-342-6164 – ocm.org

A T. Rex Named Sue
Through September 8 at Durham Museum, 801 S. 10th St.
Visit one of Chicago’s Field Museum’s traveling exhibitions, Sue, the largest, most complete, best preserved Tyrannosaurus rex in the world. M/10am-5pm; Tu/10am-8pm; W-Sat/10am-5pm; Sun/1-5pm. $9 adults, $7 seniors (62+), $6 ages 3-12, free for members and children 2 & under. 402-444-5071 – durhammuseum.org

Ron Parks at the Fred Simon Gallery
Through September 20 at Fred Simon Gallery, 1004 Farnam St.
Sculptor Ron Parks showcases this craftsmanship in this exhibition of contemporary Nebraska visual artists. M-F/8am-5pm. Free admission. 402-595-2142 – nebraskaartscouncil.org

Baseball at Boys Town
Through September 30 at Boys Town, 14100 Crawford St.
Highlights the history of baseball from 1917 to today at Boys Town and features autographed baseballs and memorabilia from Hall of Fame players Babe Ruth, Ozzie Smith, and Hank Aaron. Daily/10am-4pm. Free admission. 402-498-1186 – boystown.org

The Lorax
Through November 3 at Joslyn Art Museum, 2200 Dodge St.
A showcase of selected Dr. Seuss preliminary crayon drawings and final pen and ink line art for this iconic book from the collection of the LBJ Presidential Library & Museum. Tu-W/10am-4pm; Th/10am-8pm; F-Sat/10am-4pm; Sun/12-4pm. Free admission. 402-342-3300 – joslyn.org

Featured artists Daharsh, Ocken, and Vande Voort
September 3-29 at Artists’ Cooperative Gallery Ltd., 405 S. 11th St.
New works by glassblower Frank Daharsh, painter Virginia Ocken, and painter Dar Vande Voort. Tu-Th/11am-5pm; F-Sat/11am-10pm; Sun/12-6pm. Free admission. 402-342-9617 – artistsco-opgallery.com

Rockbrook Village® 42nd Annual Art Fair
September 7-8 at Rockbrook Village Shopping Center, 108th & W. Center Rd.
Omaha’s premier art fair since 1971. Over 160 national, regional and local artists will display and sell their one-of-a-kind works of art. 10am-5pm. Free admission. 402-390-0890 – rockbrookvillage.com

Goose Bumps! The Science of Fear
September 28 – January 5 at Durham Museum, 801 S. 10th St.
Created by The California Science Center, Durham Museum presents the many sides of fear. Test yourself against four common fears. Observe how fear changes and learn simple ways to combat stress. Tu/10am-8pm; W-Sat/10am-5pm; Sun/1-5pm. $9 adults, $7 seniors (62+), $6 ages 3-12, free for members and children 2 & under. 402-444-5071 – durhammuseum.org

Legacy: The Emily Fisher Landau Collection
September 28 – January 5 at Joslyn Art Museum, 2200 Dodge St.
A selection of paintings, sculptures, and works on paper from a historic gift pledged to the Whitney Museum of American Art in 2010 by Emily Fisher Landau. Her collection features some of the most influential artists of the 20th century, including Andy Warhol, Glenn Ligon, Sherrie Levine, Agnes Martin, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, John Baldessari, Kiki Smith, and Ed Ruscha. Tu-W/10am-4pm; Th/10am-8pm; F-Sat/10am-4pm; Sun/12-4pm. Free admission. 402-342-3300 – joslyn.org

Featured artists Johnston, Methot-Swanson, Stizman
October 1-27 at Artists’ Cooperative Gallery Ltd., 405 S. 11th St.
New works by painters Judith Anthony Johnston and Katrina Methot-Swanson, and sculptor Tom Sitzman. Tu-Th/11am-5pm; F-Sat/11am-10pm; Sun/12-6pm. Free admission. 402-342-9617 – artistsco-opgallery.com

Featured artists Akers, Fetter, Gaines
October 29 – November 24 at Artists’ Cooperative Gallery Ltd., 405 S. 11th St.
New works by mixed media artist Sean Akers, painter Joan Fetter, and weaver Agneta Gaines. Tu-Th/11am-5pm; F-Sat/11am-10pm; Sun/12-6pm. Free admission. 402-342-9617 – artistsco-opgallery.com

CONCERTS

End of the Summer Concert Series
Through September 27 at Midtown Crossing, 31st to 33rd, Farnam to Dodge sts.
A weekly concert series to end the summer, featuring Billy McGuigan and a joint concert with the Omaha Symphony and Opera Omaha. F/7:30pm. Free admission. 402-598-9676 – midtowncrossing.com

Hullabaloo Music & Camping Festival
September 5-8 at Sokol Park, 905 Allied Rd.
A celebration of music featuring live music from regional and national bands and DJs. Acts include the Aaron Freeman (former lead singer of Ween), Blackalicous, Monophonics, The Floozies, Kris Lager Band, Samantha Fish, DJEM, Lovedrunk, and much more! Food, drink and local vendors will be on hand. $20-80. 402-210-4747 – hullabaloomusicfestival.com

Scotty McCreery
September 13 at Stir Concert Cove, Harrah’s Casino, Council Bluffs, IA
Scott “Scotty” McCreery is an American country music singer from North Carolina and winner of the tenth season of American Idol. Doors open at 6pm; show at 8pm. $35 general admission. 712-329-6000 – harrahscouncilbluffs.com

Bret Michaels
September 20 at Stir Concert Cove, Harrah’s Casino, Council Bluffs, IA
Rock out the end of the summer with actor, director, screenwriter, producer, and reality television personality Bret Michaels, formerly of the band Poison. Doors open at 6pm; show at 8pm. $33 general admission. 712-329-6000 – harrahscouncilbluffs.com

Big Bad Voodoo Daddy
October 10 at Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St.
Big Bad Voodoo Daddy gained national attention when “You & Me and the Bottle Makes Three (Tonight)” and “Go Daddy-O” were featured in the film Swingers. Their concerts feature big horns, wild jungle-jazz rhythms, zoot suits & dancing flapper girls. 7:30pm. 402-345-0202 – omahaperformingarts.org

Keith Urban – Light the Fuse Tour 2013
October 18 at CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
One of the industry’s most electrifying live performers, four-time Grammy Award winner and American Idol judge Keith Urban is bringing his “Light The Fuse Tour 2013” to Omaha. Special guests include: Little Big Town and Dustin Lynch. 7pm. $37-61.50. 402-341-1500 – centurylinkcenteromaha.com

Avenged Sevenfold with Deftones and Ghost B.C.
October 22 at CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
Avenged Sevenfold, a rock band known for their diverse rock sound and dramatic imagery in album covers and t-shirts, has toured all over the United Kingdom, as well as mainland Europe, Japan, Australia and New Zealand. 8pm. $18.50-73. 402-341-1500 – centurylinkcenteromaha.com

World Blues: Taj Mahal and Vusi Mahlasela
October 25 at Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St.
Grammy®-winning composer, multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Taj Mahal with ‘The Voice’ of South Africa Vusi Mahlasela. One of the most prominent figures in late 20th century blues and roots music, his music draws inspiration from virtually every corner of the world. 8pm. 402-345-0202 – omahaperformingarts.org

Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
October 29 at CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
Premier hip-hop duo Macklemore & Ryan Lewis previously showcased their talents at The Waiting Room and Sokol Auditorium, but are now taking their music to Omaha’s main stage, CenturyLink Center Omaha. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis recently made Billboard history as the only duo to send their first two singles to No. 1 on both the Hot 100 and Top 40 Radio charts with new single “Can’t Hold Us” and breakout hit “Thrift Shop.” “Same Love,” a song and video in support of marriage equality, galvanized young fans and voters, and is certified a Gold single. 7:30pm. $29.50-82. 402-341-1500 – centurylinkcenteromaha.com

FAMILY EVENTS

Young Frankenstein – Forever Young Family & Children’s Film Series
Through September 12 at Film Streams, 1340 Mike Fahey St.
With support from the Lincoln Financial Foundation, Film Streams presents Forever Young Family & Children’s Film Series – Summer 2013 with Mel Brooks’ infamous Young Frankenstein. See website for showtimes. $9 general, $7 seniors, students, teachers, military, bike-friendly, $4.50 members, $2.50 12 & under. 402-933-0259 – filmstreams.org

Dinosaurs Alive: The Lost Valley
Through October 13 at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium, 3701 S. 10th St.
Animatronic dinosaurs intermingled with other animals transports the zoo back 65 million years to when these prehistoric beasts roamed the planet. Daily/9am-5pm. $4 with regular paid zoo admission. 402-733-8401 – omahazoo.com

Knuffle Bunny
September 6-22 at The Rose Theater, 2001 Farnam St.
Enjoy a hilarious musical version of the beloved Caldecott Honor book and get your family giggling. $18 general admission, free for members. F/7pm; Sat/2 & 5pm; Sun/2pm. 402-345-4849 – rosetheater.org

Forbidden Planet – Forever Young Family & Children’s Film Series
September 14-26 at Film Streams, 1340 Mike Fahey St.
With support from the Lincoln Financial Foundation, Film Streams presents Forever Young Family & Children’s Film Series – Summer 2013 with the Oscar-nominated Forbidden Planet. See website for showtimes. $9 general, $7 seniors, students, teachers, military, bike-friendly, $4.50 members, $2.50 12 & under. 402-933-0259 – filmstreams.org

Family Fiesta at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium
September 22 at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo, 3701 S. 10th St.
A fiesta for the whole family featuring soccer mascots, a live mariachi band, face painting, and more. 12-5pm. Free with regular paid zoo admission. 402-733-8401 – omahazoo.com

ARTsarben
September 28-29 at Aksarben Village, 67th and Center Sts.
Bring the whole family for fun, games, good food, live music, face painting, KidZone with bouncy houses, and most importantly the ART! Sat/10am-7pm; Sun/10am-4pm. Free admission. 402-345-5401 – artsarben.com

MathAlive!
September 28 – January 5 at Strategic Air & Space Museum, 28210 W. Park Hwy
Exhibit that brings to life the real math behind what kids love most—video games, sports, fashion, music, robotics, and more—and creates interactive and immersive experiences. Daily/10am-5pm. $12 adults, $11 seniors & active/retired military, $6 ages 4-12. 402-944-3100 – sasmuseum.com

Robin Hood
October 11-27 at The Rose Theater, 2001 Farnam St.
The legendary tale bursts into fresh & fiery new life in this unique, fast-paced adaptation. Robin Hood stands up for justice as he cleverly evades the Sheriff of Nottingham. Be enchanted as a band of merry men (and women) bring familiar characters to life in surprising new ways. F/7pm; Sat/2 & 5pm; Sun/2pm. $18 general admission, free for members. 402-345-4849 – rosetheater.org

Spooktacular at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium
October 18 at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo, 3701 S. 10th St.
Bring your little ghouls and goblins to this safe and fun Halloween event. 5:30-8:30pm. $8 with regular paid zoo admission. 402-733-8401 – omahazoo.com

FUNDRAISERS & GALAS

Zoofari 2013
September 7 at Omaha Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium, 3701 S. 10th St.
Fundraiser supporting the Omaha Zoo Foundation with a trunk show, dinner, live and silent auctions. 402-738-2073 – omahazoofoundation.org

Touch a Truck
September 7 at First Data, 6855 Pacific St.
Free family event with trucks, police cars, and firetrucks supporting Child Saving Institute. 11am. 402-504-3664 – childsaving.org

36th Annual Archbishop’s Dinner for Education
September 12 at Embassy Suites La Vista, 12520 Westport Pkwy.
Dinner recognizing teachers and administrators in the Archdiocese of Omaha schools. 402-827-3757 – archomaha.org

7th Annual Brew HaHa
September 12 at Stinson Park at Aksarben Village, 2285 S. 67th St.
Beer and food sampling event supporting Omaha Habitat for Humanity. 5pm. 402-884-4370 – habitatomaha.org

6th Annual Wine and Beer Event
September 12 at The Shops of Legacy, 168th & Center sts.
Support ALS in the Heartland by drinking, stolling, and shopping. 6pm. 402-592-2374 – alsintheheartland.org

Global Voices: Faith in Action
September 15 at Embassy Suites La Vista, 12520 Westport Pkwy.
Event recognizing faith-based community leaders and supporting Lutheran Family Services. 402-978-5646 – lfsneb.com

Cruisin’ for a Cure Omaha 2013
September 15 at Methodist Hospital Parking Lots, 8601 W. Dodge Rd.
Auto show and free prostate screenings with proceeds benefiting The Estabrook Cancer Center at Methodist Hospital. cruisinforacure.com

Big Red Tailgate
September 20 at Embassy Suites La Vista, 12520 Westport Pkwy.
Enjoy cocktails, a silent auction, and dinner with Completely KIDS. 5:30pm. 402-397-5809 completelykids.org or call 402-397-5809 – completelykids.org

Spotlight Gala
September 21 at Embassy Suites La Vista, 12520 Westport Pkwy.
Annual fundraiser for Voices for Children with cocktails, food, and more. 5:30pm. 402-597-3100 – voicesforchildren.com

Our Lady of Lourdes Annual Fall Festival
September 22 at Our Lady of Lourdes, 2110 S. 32nd Ave.
Fundraising festival with games, food, and more. 12pm. 402-341-5604 – ollomaha.com

Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes 2013
September 22 at Stinson Park at Aksarben Village, 2285 S. 67th St.
A fundraising walk supporting the American Diabetes Association. 402-571-1101 – diabetes.org

Halfway to St. Patrick’s Day 2013
September 26 at Anthony’s Steakhouse Ballroom & Patio, 7220 F St.
Fundraising event for Project Harmony with live Irish music and prizes. 402-595-1326 – projectharmony.com 

Omaha Signature Chefs Auction
September 26 at Embassy Suites La Vista, 12520 Westport Pkwy.
Signature dishes by 20 chefs, a raffle, and a live auction, supporting March of Dimes Nebraska. 5:30pm. 402-496-7111 – marchofdimes.com

Restoring Hearts with Bike Parts Event
September 26 at Hilton Omaha, 1001 Cass St.
Omaha Home for Boys gala featuring a motorcycle raffle and special guest Marlee Matlin. 5:30pm. 402-457-7000 – omahahomeforboys.org

Jewels of Autumn
September 28 at Alegent Creighton Health Lakeside Hospital, 16901 Lakeside Hills Ct.
Annual fundraiser with food, drinks, and auctions. 6pm. 402-717-8182 – alegentcreighton.com

Walk for the Animals 2013
September 29 at Nebraska Humane Society, 8929 Fort St.
Fundraising walk with pets. 8:30am. 402-444-7800 – nehumanesociety.org

Walk to End Alzheimer’s 2013
September 29 at Turner Park at Midtown Crossing, 3220 Farnam St.
Fundraising walk for Alzheimer’s Association. 12pm. 402-502-4301 – alz.org

43rd Annual Boy Scout Golf Invitational
September 30 at Shadow Ridge Country Club, 1501 S. 188th Plz.
Golf event for Boy Scouts of America, Mid-America Council. 11am. 402-514-3011 – mac-bsa.org

50th Anniversary Celebration
October 4 at Embassy Suites La Vista, 12520 Westport Pkwy.
Inaugural fundraising event supporting Legal Aid of Nebraska. 5:30pm. 402-348-1069 – legalaidofnebraska.com

Holy Name Harvest
October 4 at Holy Name School, 2901 Fontenelle Blvd.
Dinner, raffle, and silent and live auctions. 5:30pm. 402-451-6622 – holynameschoolomaha.org

Expressions of Hope Gala
October 4 at CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
Dinner, youth program, and silent and live auctions supporting Hope Center for Kids. 402-341-4673 – hopecenterforkids.com

Good Apple Awards
October 10 at Historic Livestock Exchange Building, 4920 S. 30th St.
Live music, cocktails, and Nebraska Appleseed community justice awards. 6pm. 402-438-8853 – neappleseed.com

HomeGrown
October 10 at Brix at Village Pointe, 225 N. 170th St.
Local wine and beer tasting supporting Nebraska Children’s Home Society. 4pm. 402-451-0787 – nchs.org

Hops & Grapes Fall Festival
October 11 at Field Club of Omaha, 3615 Woolworth Ave.
Partnership 4 Kids’ wine and beer tasting event. 7pm. 402-930-3002 – p4k.org

7th Annual Comfort Food Classic
October 13 at Ramada Omaha, 3321 S. 72nd St.
Chef competition supporting Ted E. Bear Hollow. 5pm. 402-502-2773 – tedebearhollow.org

117th Ak-Sar-Ben Coronation & Scholarship Ball
October 19 at CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
Knights of Ak-Sar-Ben Foundation’s annual scholarship ball. 402-554-9600 – aksarben.org

Ladle of Love Festival
October 20 at Open Door Mission’s Garland Thompson Men’s Center, 2705 N. 20th St.
Soups and baked goods served by local chefs, supporting Open Door Mission. 1pm. 402-829-1508 – opendoormission.org

Scholarship Luncheon
October 22 at CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
Phoenix Academy luncheon with guest speaker, former First Lady Laura Bush. 11:30am. 402-390-0556 – phoenixacademyomaha.org

6th Annual Monster Bash for Brain Cancer
October 24 at Georgetown Club, 2440 S. 141st Cir.
Live music, kids activities, food, and more, supporting Leap-for-a-Cure. 6:30pm. 402-333-9370 – leapforacure.org

Fall Luncheon 2013
October 24 at CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
Women’s Fund of Omaha event with keynote speaker Betsy Myers. 11:30am. 402-827-9280 – omahawomensfund.org

Centennial Gala
October 24 at Mutual of Omaha Dome, 3300 Dodge St.
MOSAIC event featuring keynote speaker Timothy P. Shriver, Ph.D. 6pm. 402-896-9988 – mosaicinfo.org

RECREATION

Septemberfest
Through September 2 at CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
Featuring live bands, Spider-Man, princesses, balloon artists, magicians, Omaha Roller Girls vs. North Dakota’s Roller Derby Team, BBQ & Ribeye Steak Cookoff, Texas Hold’em Poker Tournament, and more. F/5pm-12am; Sat/12-4pm; Sun-M/12pm-12am. $4 adults, free for children 5 & under. 402-341-1500 – septemberfestomaha.com

Florence Mill Farmers Market
Through September 29 at Florence Mill, 9102 N. 30th St.
A local farmers market featuring fresh, local produce, artisans and live music every Sunday afternoon. Sun/10am-3pm. Free admission. 402-551-1233 – historicflorence.org

River City Star Friday Evening Public Dinner Cruise
Through October 4 at River City Star Riverboat, 151 Freedom Park Rd.
Spend an evening on the Missouri River while enjoying live entertainment on this 1.5 hour, two entree dinner cruise. F/6:30-8pm. $42 adults, $38 seniors (65+), $21 children 12 & under. 402-342-7827 – rivercitystar.com

Omaha Restaurant Week
September 13-22 at participating Omaha restaurants
Grab your forks and knives and arrive with an empty stomach for Omaha Restaurant Week, a 10-day promotion celebrating the unique, exciting culinary scene in the Omaha metro. During this festival of food, participating restaurants offer an exclusive specials menu featuring multi-course dinners at a fixed price of either $20, $30, or $40 per person. 402-850-6776 – omaharestaurantweek.com

Street of Dreams
September 14-29 at Deer Creek, 120th and Deer Creek Dr.
Tour upscale, custom dream homes while gathering cutting edge design ideas from a variety of Omaha’s Best Custom Builders. W-Sun/12-8pm. $10 adults. 402-727-1054 – streetofdreams.org

Midtown Car Show
September 15 at Midtown Crossing, 31st-33rd and Dodge-Farnam sts.
Check out some of the area’s most fabulous rides: vintage cars and trucks, project cars, hot rods, and more. 10am-2pm. Free admission. 402-351-5964 – midtowncrossing.com

Oktoberfest
September 20-21 at German-American Society Inc., 3717 S. 120th St.
Omaha’s oldest and largest Oktoberfest celebration. Enjoy great authentic foods, including schnitzel, German potato salad, sauerkraut, German tortes, a few hogs and dozens of chickens, plus authentic music for dancing. F/5pm-12am; Sat/12pm-12am. $3 Saturday admission, $4 Sunday admission. 402-333-6615 – germanamericansociety.org

2013 Loess Hills Wine Festival
September 21 at River’s Edge Park, Council Bluffs, IA.
A celebration of the Grape Harvest with a fun day of entertainment. Admission includes live music by Pink Kadillac, a souvenir wine glass, five tickets that may be used for wine tastings, grape stomp, hayride, and more. 3-10pm. $10-50. weigga.org

22nd Annual Fort Omaha Intertribal Powwow
September 22 at Metropolitan Community College, 5730 N. 30th St.
A traditional intertribal powwow featuring Native American music, dancing, crafts, and food. A family friendly event that explores the culture and traditions of Native Americans. 1-7pm. Free admission. 402-457-2253 – mccneb.edu

Lauritzen Gardens Antique & Garden Show
September 26-29 at Lauritzen Gardens, 100 Bancroft St.
This year, the Antique & Garden Show is celebrating its 10th anniversary. To commemorate, Harrison Howard, a California artist, was commissioned to provide several one-of-a-kind pieces of art for the show. His piece, Spring, is an exclusive for Lauritzen Gardens. Lecturers this year are Carolyne Roehm, Kathryn Ireland, Eddie Ross, and Danielle Rollins. F-Sat/10am; Sun/11am. $15 general admission, $75 luncheon lectures, $125 preview party. 402-346-4002 – lauritzengardens.org

Ak-Sar-Ben’s River City Rodeo & Stock Show
September 26-29 at CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
A celebration of the region’s western heritage, featuring the Justin Boots Championships Rodeo, the Ak-Sar-Ben 4-H Stock Show, and the Douglas County Fair. Tu-F/10am-7pm; Sat/9am-7pm; Sun/9am-4pm. Free admission, except rodeo and other selected events. 402-554-9600 – rivercityrodeo.com

Just for Her Expo
October 11-13 at CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
Shop boutiques, test products and services, and more at this special event just for women in Omaha. F/5-10pm; Sat/10am-6pm; Sun/11am-4pm. justforherexpoomaha.com

25th Annual Fall Home and Garden Expo
October 25-27 at CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
The largest showcase in Nebraska and Iowa with over 100,000 sq. ft. of the latest products and services for the home – inside and out. F/5-9pm; Sat/10am-7pm; Sun/12-5pm. 402-346-8003 – showofficeonline.com

RUNS

Up & Over the River Walk & Run
September 1 at Miller’s Landing, 151 Freedom Park Rd.
An 8K run and walk that leads participants along the riverfront paths and over the Bob Kerry Pedestrian Bridge to Iowa and back. 8:30am. $30 runners, $25 walkers. 402-346-4800 – septemberfestomaha.com

HITS 38th Annual Omaha Marathon
September 22 at TD Ameritrade Park Omaha, 1200 Mike Fahey St.
Listen to live music as you run by the TD Ameritrade Stadium, the Omaha Henry Doorly Zoo, Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge, and through the Old Market. 7am. $80 marathon, $65 half-marathon, $45 10K. 402-546-1800 – omahamarathon.com

SPORTS

Visit Omaha 2013 Women’s Norceca Championship
September 16-21 at Ralston Arena, 7300 Q St.
Watch 10 teams from the North America, Central America and Caribbean region compete in this 6-day event. See the U.S. Women’s National Volleyball Team, a 2-time Olympic silver medalist, defend their title as the current NORCECA Women’s Continental Champion. 402-934-6291 – ralstonarena.com

THEATRE

Other Desert Cities
Through September 15 at SNAP! Productions, 3225 California St.
This Pulitzer Prize-nominated play explores the relationships of a family with differing political views and a tragic family secret that is threatened to be exposed. 402-341-2757 – snapproductions.com

Sirens
Through September 15 at Omaha Community Playhouse, 6915 Cass St.
This play follows the story of Sam, a one-hit-wonder songwriter, whose marriage with his wife of 25 years is stifled by his obsession with finding the next big hit. When he encounters a siren from Greek mythology out at sea, she helps him realize Rose was always the love of his life. Th-Sat/7:30pm; Sun/2pm. $35 adults, $21 students. 402-553-0800 – omahaplayhouse.com

Bollywood and Beyond
Through October 3 at Film Streams, 1340 Mike Fahey St.
A comprehensive overview of India’s prolific filmmaking traditions that presents 10 classics from a given era of Bollywood—Mumbai-made, Hindi-language films. See website for showtimes and admission. 402-933-0259 – filmstreams.org

Les Misérables
September 20 – October 27 at Omaha Community Playhouse, 6915 Cass St.
The world’s longest running and most loved musical. Set in 19th Century France, Les Mis is the epic tale of Jean Valjean as he breaks his parole and is pursued by Inspector Javert while caring for the young orphaned Cosette. W-Sat/7:30pm; Sun/2pm. 402-553-0800 – omahaplayhouse.com

The Book of Mormon
October 12-20 at Orpheum Theater, 409 S. 16th St.
The critically acclaimed and Tony® Award-winning religious satire musical, The Book of Mormon, is coming to Omaha for a nine-day run. The New York Times calls it “the best musical of this century,” and Entertainment Weekly proclaims it as “the funniest musical of all time.” Tu-W/7:30pm; F-Sat/8pm; Sun/1:30pm & 7pm. $50-140. 402-345-0606 – omahaperformingarts.com

Freud’s Last Session
October 18 – November 17 at Omaha Community Playhouse, 6915 Cass St.
An astute and witty conversation between scholar C.S. Lewis and Dr. Sigmund Freud shortly before Freud’s death, covering normally taboo topics, such as God, religion, sex and war. Th-Sat/7:30pm; Sun/2pm. 402-553-0800 – omahaplayhouse.com

Waterford

June 20, 2013 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

Beautiful landscaping, nature at your doorstep, a state-of-the-art clubhouse and fitness center overlooking the serene pool…Sounds more like a dreamy vacation destination than a permanent residence.

Waterford is a cozy neighborhood tucked away at the corner of 156th and Ida streets in northwest Omaha. “It is a quiet neighborhood with a lot of families and is a place where you really get to know your neighbors,” says Jennifer Magilton with CBSHome Real Estate. “It has that small-town sense of community.”20130602_bs_8867_Web

Resident Kim Brown attests to Waterford’s tight-knit community. “The neighborhood is friendly, quiet, and the neighbors are very supportive, caring, and gracious. We are all very close and know what each other needs. If you’re going to be gone for a week, no problem…Your neighbor will get your mail or mow your yard. And when a neighbor is going through a tough time, we all pull together and do whatever needs to be done,” says Brown.

The residents of Waterford enjoy throwing holiday parties for the kids. “Traditionally, we have a Halloween party, an Easter Egg Hunt, and Santa comes on a firetruck,” says Brown. “We have people bring cookies for the Christmas event and candy for the Halloween event. A committee gets together to plan and solicit any donations or other items that need to be purchased.”20130602_bs_8818_Web

Brown and her family have lived in Waterford for six years and do not plan on moving anytime soon. “In the area where I live [northeast], we are pretty established…there are only a few lots left. So, if you want to buy, hurry!”

The subdivision offers three housing options, all with access to the private clubhouse, 24-hour fitness center, two swimming pools, lake, and walking trails: single-family homes, estate lots, and villas/townhomes with lawn and trash services included.20130602_bs_8786_Web

“The neighborhood has a variety of architectural [home] designs, from ultra-chic modern to Colorado cabin, as well as traditional homes in a wide range of prices…lots of different styles of homes throughout because of all of the different builders,” says Magilton. Homes sell for $250,000 to $700,000.

The winding roads of Waterford are a calming retreat from the city noise and traffic. The streets are lined with neat rose bushes, shrubs, and local prairie grasses. The neighborhood has a private clubhouse equipped with a pool and 24-hour fitness center. A second pool sits on the southeast side of the subdivision.20130602_bs_8785_Web

Outdoors enthusiasts enjoy the secluded 30-acre lake stocked with fish and the biking/jogging trail. “I absolutely love the access we have to nature in terms of green space and walking trails,” says resident Maria Minderman. “You can access Standing Bear [Recreational Area] and many other trails through the trail system.”

The clubhouse is an excellent resource for residents. It’s a charming space that includes a kitchen and a large, open space plus a sitting area with couches, a television, and fireplace. Several of the Waterford community activities are hosted there.20130602_bs_8831_Web

“If you have a small party, I would guess the clubhouse would comfortably hold anywhere from 25-50 people. It would be a great place for a rehearsal dinner, graduation, or birthday party,” Brown adds. “It is a very nice treat for residents if they do not want to go into Omaha…There is something right here that they can use. Plus, you don’t have to clean your house!”

The neighborhood is unique in that it’s located in both the Omaha Public and Bennington Public School districts. Minderman’s children—who just finished kindergarten, second, and fourth grades—go to Saddlebrook Elementary in OPS, just 1.5 miles from her house. “I absolutely love Saddlebrook. The school is brand-new and has a library and a community center. I don’t think you could find a better school in Omaha,” says Minderman.20130602_bs_8823_Web

Brown’s two children attend Bennington Public Schools. “We have a lot of different school systems represented in Waterford,” says Brown. “I know families that attend St. James [Catholic], Lifegate Christian School, and Concordia [Lutheran] School of Omaha.”

Brown and her family built their two-story, traditional home and were very pleased with their building options. “We didn’t want a cookie-cutter house,” says Brown, adding she admires the other unique homes in the area. “A house was just built down the road from us that is absolutely beautiful. It has more of a Colorado feel to it. There are a couple of really unique homes that resemble a Frank Lloyd Wright style.”20130602_bs_8814_Web

Waterford offers the proximity to modern conveniences without sacrificing the natural elements. “We have geese that make their home at the lake most of the year. It is very serene to walk around the lake and see the geese, ducks, and bunnies. I saw a bald eagle the other day,” says Brown.

At the same time, the subdivision is just a couple miles from the shopping and dining at centers at 144th and 156th and Maple streets. Target, Wal-Mart, and HyVee are just a quick drive away.

And if you’re a golfer, Stone Creek Golf Course (156th & Ida) is just a stroll across the street.

Calendar of Events: July/August 2013

We also have a “Summer Fun in Omaha” list with this summer’s big events. Go here to see that list.

ART & MUSEUM EXHIBITS


Nancy Lepo/Corey Broman at the Fred Simon Gallery
Through July 12 at Fred Simon Gallery, 1004 Farnam St. The contemporary Nebraska visual artists exhibition features the drawings of Nancy Lepo and ceramics of Corey Broman. M-F/8am-5pm. Free admission. 402-595-2142 – nebraskaartscouncil.org

Raul Colon: Tall Tales and Huge Hearts
Through July 28 at Joslyn Art Museum, 2200 Dodge St. Explore Raul Colon’s watercolor illustrations of Dr. Jill Biden’s Don’t Forget, God Bless Our Troops and Frank McCourt’s Angela and the Baby Jesus. Tu-W/10am-4pm; Th/10am-8pm; F-Sat/10am-4pm; Sun/12-4pm. 402-342-3300 – joslyn.org

Tiempo de Danzon by Cristina Kahlo
Through August 24 at El Museo Latino, 4701 S. 25th St. This special contemporary photography exhibition by great-niece of Frida Kahlo, Cristina Kahlo, displays “danzon,” the office genre and dance of Cuba. M,W,F/10am-5pm; Tu,Th/1-5pm; Sat/10am-2pm. M, W, F/10am-5pm; Tu, Th/1-5pm; Sat/10am-2pm. $5 adults, $4 students, $3.50 seniors & ages K-12, free for members. 402-731-1137 – elmuseolatino.org

Secrets of Paris: Food, Culture & What’s Hot
August 29 at Joslyn Art Museum, 2200 Dodge St.
Learn more about the City of Light during Joslyn Art Museum’s end of summer public lecture, presented by Doni Belau, founder of Girls’ Guide to Paris (.com) and homeowner in France. 6pm. $35 general admission. 402-661-3862 – joslyn.org

Baseball at Boys Town
Through September 30 at Boys Town, 14100 Crawford St.
Highlights the history of baseball from 1917 to today at Boys Town and features autographed baseballs and memorabilia from Hall of Fame players Babe Ruth, Ozzie Smith, and Hank Aaron. Daily/10am-4pm. Free admission. 402-498-1186 – boystown.org

Baseball at Boys Town runs through September 30th. Photo provided by Boys Town.

Baseball at Boys Town runs through September 30th. Photo provided by Boys Town.

Featured artists Baines, Luth, Smith, and Wroblewski
July 2-28 at Artists’ Cooperative Gallery Ltd, 405 S. 11th St.
New works from fused glass artist Jesse Baines, painter and weaver N. Byram Luth, photographer Alan R. Smith, and sculptor Pete Wroblewski. Tu-Th/11am-5pm; F-Sat/11am-10pm; Sun/12-6pm. Free admission. 402-342-9617 – artistsco-opgallery.com

First Friday Old Market
July 5 & August 2 at Old Market, 13th to 10th & Farnam to Leavenworth sts.
Stroll the Old Market’s brick streets and enjoy live music and art galleries during this celebration of local creativity in Omaha’s most historic neighborhood. 6-9pm. Free admission. firstfridayoldmarket.com

The Four Seasons Intertwined
July 13-17 at Florence Mill, 9102 N. 30th St.
Four Nebraska artists who have been friends for 30 years are exhibiting as a group show for the first time in Omaha. Daily/1-5pm. Free admission.
402-551-1233 – historicflorence.org

Featured artists Ellington, Schimenti, Shenefelt
July 30 – August 25, Artists’ Cooperative Gallery Ltd, 405 S. 11th St.
New works from printmaker Carol Meis Ellington and photographers Margie Schimenti and Dale Shenefelt. Tu-Th/11am-5pm; F-Sat/11am-10pm; Sun/12-6pm. Free admission. 402-342-9617 – artistsco-opgallery.com

Ron Parks at the Fred Simon Gallery
August 12 – September 20 at Fred Simon Gallery, 1004 Farnam St.
Sculptor Ron Parks showcases this craftsmanship in this exhibition of contemporary Nebraska visual artists. M-F/8am-5pm. Free admission. 402-595-2142 – nebraskaartscouncil.org

CONCERTS


Rockbrook Village Friday Concerts

Through August 30 at Rockbrook Village, 10819 Prairie Brook Rd.
Local musicians entertain families every Friday night throughout the summer. F/7-8pm. Free admission. 402-390-0890 – rockbrookvillage.com

Sounds of Summer Concert Series
Through August 30 at Shadow Lake Towne Center, 72nd St. & Hwy 370
Live bands include a mix of jazz, blues, classic rock, country, and funk. F/6:30-8:30pm. Free admission. 402-537-0046 – shadowlakeshopping.com

The Vibes at Village Point Summer Concert Series
Through August 31 at Village Pointe, 168th & W. Dodge Rd.
Hot live music, dancing, and refreshments. Free admission. 402-505-9773 – villagepointeshopping.com

Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers
July 21 at Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St.
Listen to a new collaboration showcasing new material performed by Martin and Edie Brickell along with the unique hybrid of bluegrass and comedy of Grammy®-winners Martin and The Steep Canyon Rangers. 7pm. $49-110. 402-345-0606 – omahaperformingarts.org

Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers at the Holland Performing Arts Center July 21st.

Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers, July 21st.

“Weird Al” Yankovic: The Alpocalypse Tour
July 25 at Orpheum Theater, 409 S. 16th St.
“Weird Al” Yankovic brings his storied four decade career to Omaha as part of his “Alpocalypse Tour,” promoting his latest and highest charting-topping album to date, Alpocalypse. 7:30pm. $30-40. 402-345-0606 – omahaperformingarts.com

Maha Music Festival
August 17 at Aksarben VIllage, 67th St. & W. Center Rd.
Omaha’s homegrown, nonprofit music festival returns for its 5th year, with headliners The Flaming Lips and Matt & Kim. 12pm-12am. $45 in advance, $55 day-of. mahamusicfestival.com

End of the Summer Concert Series
August 23 – September 27 at Midtown Crossing, 31st to 33rd & Farnam to Dodge sts.
A weekly concert series to end the summer, featuring Billy McGuigan and a joint concert with the Omaha Symphony and Opera Omaha. F/7:30pm. Free admission. 402-598-9676 – midtowncrossing.com

FAMILY EVENTS


Downtown Play Streets
July 27 at 13th-19th on Farnam St.
This festival transforms the downtown streets into a play space and fills it with activities like rock climbing, bike safety courses, cooking demos and zumba. 8am-2pm. Free admission. 402-934-6027 – openstreetsomaha.org

Wild, Wild West Day
July 27 at Durham Museum, 801 S. 10th St.
Enjoy western inspired activities like cowboy shootouts and trick roping demonstrations for some old-fashioned western fun. 10am-3pm. $9 adults, $7 seniors, $6 children ages 3-12, free for members and children 2 & under. 402-444-5071 – durhammuseum.org

Wild, Wild West Day, July 27th. Photo provided by Durham Museum.

Wild, Wild West Day, July 27th. Photo provided by Durham Museum.

Family Fun Carnival
August 3 at Strategic Air & Space Museum, 28210 W. Park Hwy.
Enjoy bounce houses, face painting, scavenger hunts, and more activities for the whole family. 10am-5pm. $12 adults, $6 ages 4-12, free for members. 402-944-3100 – sasmuseum.com

Midlands Pirate Festival
August 24 at Bellevue Berry Farm & Pumpkin Ranch, 11001 S. 48th St.
A nautical celebration of all things pirate, this special weekend is filled with debauchery and fantasy as participants eat, drink and make merry like a pirate. 11am-5pm. $10 adults, $6 children. 402-331-5500 – bellevueberryfarm.com

North Omaha Play Streets
August 25 at N. 24th St. between Lake & Parker sts.
This festival transforms the North Omaha streets into a play space and fills it with activities like rock climbing, bike safety courses, cooking demos and zumba. 2-7pm. Free admission. 402-934-6027 – openstreetsomaha.org

FUNDRAISERS & GALAS


OwL Ride: Omaha with Lights
July 13 at The Mattress Factory, 501 N. 13th St.
Late-night bike ride in Downtown Omaha, supporting Meyer Foundation for Disabilities. 10pm. owlride.org.

OwL Ride, July 13th.

OwL Ride, July 13th.

Lexus Champions for Marian Golf Tournament
July 15 at Indian Creek Golf Course, 20100 W. Maple Rd.
Golf tournament supporting Marian High School. 11am. 402-659-1567 – marianhighschool.net

Links to a Cure
July 18-19 at Quarry Oaks Golf Course (16600 Quarry Oaks Dr.) & Hilton Omaha (1001 Cass St.)
A dinner gala and golf benefit supporting the Nebraska Chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. 6pm. 402-330-6164 – cff.org

Angels Among Us Charity Golf Outing
July 19 at Tiburon Golf Course, 10302 S. 168th St.
Annual golf scramble supporting Angels Among Us. 11am. 402-885-4840 – myangelsamoungus.org

Hope in the Heartland Gala
July 19 at Stinson Park at Aksarben Village, 2285 S. 67th St.
Annual American Cancer Society gala themed “An Evening at the Races.” 6pm. 402-393-5801 – cancer.org

Driving for Excellence Golf Fest
July 22 at The Players Club at Deer Creek, 12101 Deer Creek Dr.
Golf event supporting Mercy High School. 402-553-9424 – mercyhigh.org

Joslyn Castle Literary Festival
July 27 – August 10 at Joslyn Castle, 3902 Davenport St.
Travel back in time to celebrate all that made the ‘20s roar with an assortment of events featuring F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, the Jazz Age, and a classic car show. 402-595-2199 – joslyncastlecarclassic.com

24th Annual Swing with Pride
August 5 at The Players Club at Deer Creek, 12101 Deer Creek Dr.
Golf outing with silent auction and dinner, supporting Roncalli Catholic High School. 402-571-7670 – roncallicatholic.org

2013 JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes
August 10 at Lewis & Clark Landing, 515 N. Riverfront Dr.
Walk and T1D 5K Dash supporting JDRF Heartland Chapter. A registration fee applies for 5K Run participants. 5K/7:30am; Walk/9am. 402-397-2873 – jdrf.org

BaconFest Omaha
August 11 at Omaha Kroc Center, 2825 Y St.
Bacon-inspired cuisine, entertainment, and family activities, supporting The Salvation Army KROC Center. 1pm. 402-898-7700 – omahakroc.org

7th Annual Summer Bash for Childhood Cancer
August 17 at Tip Top Ballroom, 1502 Cuming St.
Dinner, auctions, and entertainment supporting Metro Area Youth Foundation, Inc. 5:30pm. 402-871-6246 – summerbashforccc.org

Omaha Walk to Defeat ALS
August 17 at Werner Park, 12356 Ballpark Way
Fundraising walk supporting the ALS Association. 9am. 402-991-8788 – webkwc.alsa.org

15th Annual Ted E. Bear Hollow 5K Fun Run & Remembrance Walk
August 24 at Outback Steakhouse, 7605 Cass St.

A walk and 5K run supporting Ted E. Bear Hollow. 8am. 402-502-2773 – tedebearhollow.org

 

RECREATION


Monday Night Movies in the Park
Through July 22 at Turner Park in Midtown Crossing, 31st to 33rd & Farnam to Dodge St. Presented by Marcus Midtown Cinema and the Omaha World-Herald, this eight-week movie series features movies chosen by the audience. Crowds gather at dusk with blankets, chairs, and popcorn. Free admission. 402-346-6900 – midtowncrossing.org

Brewery Tour
Through July 27 at Lucky Bucket Brewery, 11941 Centennial Rd. Tour the Lucky Bucket Brewery and try five year-round beers in addition to some limited editions not available in stores. W-F/5:30pm; Sat/12-2pm. 402-763-8868 – luckybucketbrewing.com

River City Star Sunday Public Sightseeing Cruise
Through August 25 at River City Star Riverboat, 151 Freedom Park Rd. Spend your Sunday afternoon relaxing on the water, enjoying the sights and sounds of Omaha’s riverfront. Sun/1-2pm & 2:30-3:30pm. 402-342-7827 – rivercitystar.com

River City Star Public Sightseeing Cruises on Fridays (through October) and Sundays (through August).

River City Star Public Sightseeing Cruises on Fridays (through October) and Sundays (through August).

Florence Mill Farmers Market
Through September 29 at Florence Mill, 9102 N. 30th St.
A local farmers market featuring fresh, local produce, artisans and live music every Sunday afternoon. Sun/10am-3pm. Free admission. 402-551-1233 – historicflorence.org

River City Star Friday Evening Public Dinner Cruise
July 12 – October 4 at River City Star Riverboat, 151 Freedom Park Rd.
Spend an evening on the Missouri River while enjoying live entertainment on this one-and-a-half hour, two-entree dinner cruise. F/6:30-8pm. $42 adults, $38 seniors (65+), $21 children 12 & under. 402-342-7827 – rivercitystar.com

River City Star Public Irish Dinner Cruise
July 24 at River City Star Riverboat, 151 Freedom Park Rd.
This one-and-a-half hour Irish dinner cruise features live entertainment from Dave March along with a two-entree Irish dinner buffet. 6:30-8pm. $45 adults, $43 seniors (65+), $21 children 12 & under. 402-342-7827 – rivercitystar.com

Tour de Zoo at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium
August 8 at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium, 3701 S. 10th St.
Bring your bike and ride during Tour de Zoo, featuring dinner, snacks, refreshments, and special animal encounters all evening long. 6:30-8:30pm. $20 with regular paid zoo admission, free for children 2 & under. 402-738-2038 – omahazoo.com

RUNS


Omaha Kids’ Triathlon
July 20 at Cunningham Lake, 8660 Lake Cunningham Rd.
This triathlon, open to children from 6 to 14 years, emphasizes fitness, fun, and safety while children compete in age-appropriate distances. 8:30am. 402-548-4258 – raceomaha.com

Tomato Fight Run
July 20 at CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
Join thousands of people in one of the biggest tomato fights of the year at the finish line of this 5K run. 10am. $45. 402-341-1500 – tomatofightrun.com

Omaha Triathlon
July 21 at  Cunningham Lake, 8660 Lake Cunningham Rd.
A three-event race that challenges participants to run, bike, and swim the Olympic distance of 50.5 kilometers: a 1.5K swim, 40K bike ride, and 10K run. 8:30am. 402-548-4258 – raceomaha.com

Omaha Triathlon, July 21st. Photo by Rick Anderson.

Omaha Triathlon, July 21st. Photo by Rick Anderson.

SPORTS


TD Ameritrade College Home Run Derby and 29th Annual Omaha World-Herald Independence Day Fireworks
July 3 at TD Ameritrade Park, 1200 Mike Fahey St.
Watch college baseball’s premiere power hitters show off their skills during the home run derby and stay for the fireworks show conclusion. 7:30pm. $35 Family Four Packs, $12 adults, $8 kids. 1-800-745-3000 – collegehomerunderby.com

Omaha Storm Chasers vs. Oklahoma City RedHawks and Nashville Sounds
July 22-29 at Werner Park Omaha, 12356 Ballpark Way.
The Omaha Storm Chasers face off against the Oklahoma City RedHawks and the Nashville Sounds in one of the season’s longest home sessions. $6-15.50.  402-738-5100 – omahastormchasers.com

Omaha Heart vs. Baltimore Charm
August 3 at Ralston Arena, 7300 Q St.
Lingerie Football League game. $16.50-76.50. 402-934-9966 – lfsus.com/omahaheart

THEATRE


Sirens
August 16 at Omaha Community Playhouse, 6915 Cass St.
Sirens combines romance, music, and Greek mythology to tell the story of one-hit-wonder songwriter Sam Abrams. Th-Sat/7:30pm; Sun/2pm. $35 adults, $21 students. 402-553-0800 – omahaplayhouse.com

Sirens, August 16th.

Sirens, August 16th.

Other Desert Cities
August 22 – September 15 at SNAP! Productions, 3225 California St.
This Pulitzer Prize-nominated play explores the relationships of a family with differing political views and a tragic family secret that is threatened to be exposed. 402-341-2757 – snapproductions.com

American Cancer Society

Photography by Bill Sitzmann

Being “the official sponsor of birthdays” doesn’t mean the American Cancer Society shows up at parties to oversee the unwrapping of presents or the blowing out of candles on the cake. It’s a tougher sponsorship, one that requires copious amounts of fundraising, long-term research, and dedicated volunteers. Because they believe everyone deserves to have a full life without the looming threat of cancer.

“We are determined to make this cancer’s last century,” says Joy King, regional vice president of ACS in Omaha, who previously worked as a regional executive director in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. “We want to change the stats from two out of three people surviving today in the U.S. to three out of three surviving. As an organization, we have never been more ready to put the American Cancer Society out of business.”

The organization, which is currently celebrating its 100th anniversary, holds 47 Relay for Life events, two galas, and a breast cancer walk each year in Nebraska. Besides the events, ACS also supports several awareness campaigns and collaborative efforts, including Colon Cancer Awareness Month in March and the Great American Smoke Out each November.

“We are determined to make this cancer’s last century…As an organization, we have never been more ready to put the American Cancer Society out of business.” – Joy King, regional vice president

“We’ve played a role in nearly every cancer research breakthrough in recent history,” adds King. “Each year, we help cancer patients get the help they need when they need it. For example, last year alone, we assisted more than a million people who called us for help providing free services, like a place to stay while traveling for treatment, rides to treatments, emotional support, and so much more.”

King knows from years of working with ACS that silence and a sit-back-and-watch attitude don’t finish the fight against cancer—it’s action that accomplishes these breakthroughs.

Another person who understands the importance of action is cancer survivor Michelle Belsaas. She was 20 when she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. “I thought cancer was an elderly person’s disease,” she says. “It came out of nowhere. There’s no known cause, so no one really knows how I got it. I was just reaching down to start the shower one day, and my neck cramped up…I went to the doctor, and he was like, ‘Oh, there’s a lump.’”

Belsaas had two cancerous nodules in her neck, but the doctor told her not to worry. After all, thyroid cancer is one of the lesser evils with about a 96 percent survival rate. “They took my thyroid out the next day, and then they gave me radioactive iodine to kill off the thyroid tissue.”

Although Belsaas didn’t need chemotherapy or lose her hair during her treatment, her thyroid cancer reared its ugly head once more about 10 years later while she was getting a check-up. This time, the treatment made her very sick and required her to be quarantined to a room in her home for weeks. “They had me withhold from foods with iodine for six weeks over Thanksgiving, which was really tough. You don’t realize how much food has iodine in it until you can’t eat it.”

“For once, I wasn’t alone. Knowing that there are people who go through the same thing and know how it feels to continually wait, it was like finding a family.” – Michelle Belsaas, cancer survivor

Today, Belsaas is 100 percent cancer-free. She still goes in for blood tests and ultrasounds every year to make sure her hormone therapy is regulated well—something that she will have to deal with for the rest of her life—but otherwise, everything is back to normal.

When she lived in Lincoln, Belsaas stumbled across Relay for Life. “I thought, ‘I’m a cancer survivor…let’s go!’” she says with a laugh. But when she did the survivor lap at her first Relay event, it suddenly dawned on her that what she had survived was a big deal. “I couldn’t emotionally handle it,” she says. “For once, I wasn’t alone. Knowing that there are people who go through the same thing and know how it feels to continually wait, it was like finding a family.” That’s when she decided ACS was the organization for her. She started getting more involved with ACS, volunteering her time and chairing events, like ACS’ newest fundraiser, Hope in the Heartland Gala.

This year’s Hope in the Heartland Gala takes place on July 19 at Stinson Park at Aksarben Village and is themed “An Evening at the Races.” In its first year, the event raised over $201,000. This year, ACS hopes to raise at least $300,000 through auctions, honorary luminaries, and more.

Connie Sullivan, who is chairing the gala alongside husband Tim and co-chairs Addie and Robert Hollingsworth, hopes to make this event the premier gala in Omaha. She says she can’t think of another charity that affects more people—both those suffering and those who know someone suffering.

Sullivan herself can attest to the effect cancer can have, as she lost both her parents to lung cancer in just three years’ time when she was in her early 20s. “I hadn’t ever been involved with anyone personally with cancer,” she says. “I was devastated. It happened so quickly between diagnosis and death.” Just when she thought it couldn’t get any worse, she lost her aunt and her cousin to cancer as well.

“It’s hard to say no to a cause that you believe in…I lost four significant people in my life to cancer, so I can’t think of anything else that I’d have more passion for.” – Connie Sullivan, chair of Hope in the Heartland Gala

Following the overwhelming grief of losing loved ones to cancer, Sullivan got involved with ACS. She and Tim lived in Lincoln at the time, but they helped out with a jazz festival event for ACS. “We just called and said that we’d like to volunteer, and we started going to meetings. I love the cause. It’s hard to say no to a cause that you believe in…I lost four significant people in my life to cancer, so I can’t think of anything else that I’d have more passion for.”

Since moving to Omaha, Sullivan and her husband have only gotten more involved with ACS. “ACS does so many good things for people with cancer…Diagnosis is overwhelming. [ACS] is there to help.”

The American Cancer Society Omaha will host its annual Hope in the Heartland Gala on July 19 at Stinson Park at Aksarben Village. For more information, visit cancer.org or call 402-393-5800.