Tag Archives: #OmahaWeekend

Sharing Omaha

June 16, 2015 by

This article appeared in in the summer 2015 issue of B2B.

Of the 318 million U.S. citizens, can you venture to guess how many use social media? The answer came at a recent eTourism conference—67% of us in the U.S. are using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media platforms to connect with our friends, family, and favorite products. What is interesting for tourism is that most people use social media to brag about their vacations, and, as the official agency in charge of inspiring visitors to travel to Omaha, we love that.

Currently the Visit Omaha Facebook page has nearly 100,000 followers. Facebook provides the Omaha Convention and Visitors Bureau (OCVB) with a platform to promote Omaha, and it allows residents and visitors to easily share Omaha’s story with even more people. The OCVB social media strategy is simple—showcase Omaha as a visitor destination, or, in other words, inform people why Omaha is worth the trip. And more people are spreading that message than ever before—thanks to Visit Omaha followers, 6.6 million Facebook users were exposed to the Visit Omaha message in 2014.

Two-thirds of Visit Omaha’s Facebook fans reside outside the metro-Omaha area. In fact, the page has fans from 44 different countries, including Germany, Italy, and India. Visit Omaha fans range in age from 13 to 65-plus, and the majority of them are women (62%).

The Visit Omaha social media presence extends to a number of other platforms, including Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

Visit Omaha also uses creative ways to engage and encourage the social media audience to share Omaha’s story. One way is with the Omaha Weekend Insta-map, which invites visitors and locals to take pictures of their Omaha experiences and share the photos with us. All they have to do is tag their photos on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #OmahaWeekend, and those photos will automatically populate the Insta-map. And stop by the Omaha Visitors Center to take advantage of our photo booth. Guests can take fun Omaha-themed selfies in our iSnap photo booth and instantly post them to Facebook and Twitter. To date, 1,223 people have shared their photos with more than 112,000 of their friends and family.

You are invited to join the conversation and help tell Omaha’s story – just use #OmahaWeekend on your favorite social media platform. Happy sharing!

Deb Ward

Deb Ward is the director of marketing/communications, Omaha Convention and Visitor’s Bureau

Snip-Buzz-Clank

April 6, 2014 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

The rapid-fire click of scissor snips and the droning hum of electric razors form the soundtrack at most any barber shop. The percussion section of the orchestra over at Goodwin’s Spencer Street Barber Shop adds yet a third instrument to the mix, thus rendering a symphony of “snip-buzz-clank-snip-buzz-clank.”

Owner Dan Goodwin’s bench press and its metal-on-metal clinks and clanks may seem out of place amid the barbering tools marinating in jars of blue disinfectant, but it is just one way that the champion weightlifter keeps up his iron-pumping regimen.

Oh, did we mention that Goodwin is 82 years old?

Taking up the sport at the tender age of 68, Goodwin has since gone on to capture 13 national titles to go along with three world records. He has competed on four continents and is the bench press, squat, and total points world record holder in the 80-and-older age group called Master’s 4.

Goodwin works to encourage good fitness habits among people of all ages. He’s been cutting hair in the same space for more than half a century, meaning that he now has four generations of clients as a captive audience to hear his message of wellness.

“I gave this young man his first haircut,” Goodwin says with a nod to the occupant of chair No. 3. The boy is Damon, a 5th grader at nearby Sacred Heart School. “And I’ll keep on him as he grows to make sure he knows to get plenty of exercise to live a long and healthy life.”

The three-chair barber shop is also steeped in the city’s history of civil rights. It was prominently featured in the 1966 film, A Time for Burning. Nominated for an Academy Award as best documentary, the film chronicled attempts by the pastor of Augustana Lutheran Church to integrate his then all-white congregation. Both Goodwin and one of his employees, a young barber named Ernie, were prominently featured in the documentary. Ernie, of course, is now State Sen. Ernie Chambers, the implacable civil rights advocate and longest-serving member in Nebraska Unicameral history.

“I like being healthy,” Goodwin says. “I like to exercise. It makes me feel young. I don’t think about my age very much and am usually reminded about it most when people say they can’t believe it when they learn how ancient I am.”

Judging by the chiseled figure in the photograph above, it’s an experience Goodwin must encounter about a bazillion times each and every day.

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