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Faces • Style • Home • Events • Art • Dining

Summer Fun In Omaha

Special Olympics Nebraska

Celebrating 40 Years Fine Tequila Tasting

at La Mesa

omaha’s

PITCH MAN Willy Theisen may/june • 2012

GALA

Cover Story: Project Interfaith

PERMIT NO. 5377 DENVER, CO

w w w.O ma ha P u bl ic ations.com

PAID

Omaha Magazine • 5921 S. 118th Circle • Omaha, NE 68137

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Luxury Homes CoLLeCtion 3545 S. 228th Street, Elkhorn

$2,250,000

Words cannot describe this home. Seeing it WILL! Spectacular home in The Sanctuary. Modern interpretation of classic European design elements. Absolutely stunning retreat on over 2 wooded acres. Over 6,500 sq. ft.

John Kraemer • 402.689.2233

16749 CR P10, Herman, Ne

$899,000

Perfect for country living. Envir. friendly/energy efficient. Geothermal heat/cool & 2 high effcy wood FP. 1100 sq. ft. no maintenance deck. Handicap accessible. 14 clsts. Kenmore Elite appliances. Safe room. Solarium. Scrty sys. Only 30 mi frm Omaha.

Dave Ostrand • 402.213.7332

18905 Lafayette Ave, Elkhorn

$750,000

Private lot wrapped in trees to the back & side. Perfect use of paneled wood, granite & tile to create beautiful built-in features. Grand ceilings on the main floor, hearth in kitchen, home theater. Landscaping designed for an ultimate Retreat. Maintained to perfection, this home presents itself as new.

$675,000

Beautiful hard to find acreage in Skyline Ranches. 1 1/2 story home features 6 bedrooms and 6 baths with over 6800 sq feet. Huge living spaces, gourmet kitchen, large private beds that all have access to baths, and large master suite with spa like Bath. Features 2 pastures with a 4 stall horse barn that is 1225 sq ft. Come see this fabulous home today!

Susan Hancock • 402.215.7700

2 

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$1,700,000

13650 Hamilton

$899,000

Beautiful 1.5 Sty, 6 br, 4-car gar. in Elk Ranch Estate subdiv. Almost 8,400 fin sq ft of lvg spce, open floor-plan. Ktn offers large eat-in area, brkfst bar, double oven, blt in desk, pntry, fmly rm and snrm. Extr feat 10 acs, prvt lot, walk-out lot w/ dk/pto and water fall.

Stunning design w/arched hallways, stone & hardwood flrs, leaded glass accents & open rooms. Granite & S.S. kitchen Formal DR, FR, LR, Office & MBR on main flr. Bonus rm & 3 BR’s, 2 BA’s on 2nd flr. LL w/18.4x15.6 5th BR, exercise rm & rec rm w/bar. Stone exterior, beautiful landscaping.

Jeff Cohn • 402.452.0642

Marvin and Fike • 402.333.5008

1903 Woodbridge Circle, Papillion

$895,000

111 Carolina Drive, Carter Lake

$790,000

Amazing views of Walnut Creek Lake. 3587 additional sq ft in unfin. walk-out bsmt & rough-in for elevator. Fantastic kitchen. A “smart” home, lights, sound, entertainment & security are prgrmble. Built by master builder Dick Lind, this home offers the best in materials, workmanship & design.

Park-like setting on the lake. Private drive to home, great location with spectacular views year round. This five bedroom home has lots of features not found in other homes. Large living room and kitchen, great room, extra built ins.

Melissa Jarecke • 402.680.2887

Jerre Hunter • 402.981.1342

6020 Country Club Oaks Place

$725,000

Spectacular home in Country Club Oaks. Freshly remodeled w/new carpet, paint, light fixtures, deck/patio, gutters, fence, pool w/ liner and geothermal heat/cool system. Custom cherry plank ceiling in DR, kitchen, family room and entry. This home is a masterpiece.

Arlene Cohen • 402.598.7916

John Kraemer • 402.689.2233

21185 Bonanza Boulevard

3302 N 216 Street, Eklhorn

219 S 94 Street

$725,000

Absolutely stunning 2 sty on 1+ acre private/treed lot in Skyline Ranches. Fabulous hearthroom/gourmet kitchen w/ cherry wood floors + cabinets + travertine counters & exceptional master suite w/ specialty custom cherry cabinets, travertine counters + Italian tile floor. Horses permitted.

Nancy Kehrli • 402.690.1099

$649,000

Gracious Dist. 66 home. Elegant living room, spacious DR and awesome state of the art kitchen. Enticing architectural lines crafted of stone FP, hardwood floors, granite countertops, top of the line appliances, roof and new hot water system. Special features are numerous.

Marvin and Fike • 402.333.5008

21010 Buckskin Trail, Elkhorn

9356 Raven Drive, Louisville

$425,000

Nestled in trees overlooking the Platte River Valley. This home has wonderful masonry work. All brick and stone surrounded by a 1.5 acre stocked lake. Wood floors, ceramic, granite, big rooms, high ceilings with a dream kitchen to entertain in while you watch the fishing and swimming fun. Bring your toys for the extra 44x28 garage.

Rob Cerveny • 402.598.3335

V i r t u a l t o u r s a n d M o r e at npdodge.com

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risk takers

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may/june •  2012  

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TicKeTs on sale now micHael bolTon

THe sHins may 31

311

july 6

buddy Guy / jonny lanG

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THe aveTT broTHers

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Contents May/June 2012 features

18

departments

Summer Fun in Omaha

30

Special Olympics Nebraska

6

10

For Starters

12

Calendar of Events

24

Omaha A rt: Susan Knight, Beguiled by Water

28

Style Shot: Julie Hillmer

39

Omaha Faces: Levent Oz

41

Omaha Home

107

Greater Nebraska Happenings

112

Gen O: Jocelyn Robertshaw

114

Omaha Faces: Natalie Jensen

Editor’s Letter

gala

32

Omaha’s Pitch Man, Willy Theisen

We follow the godfather of pizza, Willy Theisen, for an afternoon and get to see a kind, hardworking man.

93

GALA

95

Cover Story: Project Interfaith

100

Inside Scoop

102

Gala Calendar

103

Gala Events

dining out

113

La Mesa Tequila Tastings

www.ReadOnlineNow.com

116

Chef Profile; Whitner, Chef Mike’s Community Café & Catering

118

R estaurant R eview: Jackson Street Tavern

120

Dining Guide may/june •  2012  

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Editor’s Letter

Dear Readers, L

Linda Persigehl ike many of you, I love to travel. You might even

say I’m a travel junkie, addicted to the excitement that comes with visiting new places and experiencing new things. My husband rolls his eyes every time I bring up “our next trip,” which right now is a family vacation to Arizona to visit the Grand Canyon, Sedona, and “the cousins.” And since we live smack dab in the middle of the country and so close to Eppley Airfield, traveling from Omaha is easy—so much more so than say, Chicago O’Hare or LAX. But this summer, work schedules, kids’ activities, and money constraints (college savings for our daughter is taking priority) will keep our family home for most of the kids’ school break. Initially, I was a bit disappointed about our lack of travel plans; then I read through Omaha Magazine’s Calendar of Events and Summer Fun in Omaha! Guide and I changed my tune. I’m anxiously awaiting the Olympic Swim Trials. I’m deadset on taking a few half-days to visit the Summer Arts Festival and the new and improved Scott Aquarium at the Omaha Zoo. I missed out on the Red Sky Music Festival last summer, so this year I’m definitely going. And I’m a regular at Shakespeare on the Green, the Durham Museum and, now, Werner Park to watch the Storm Chasers.

The thing is, I really don’t feel the need to get away. There’s so much going on right here in Omaha, I think I might actually feel like I’m missing out if I head out of town. I know I’m not alone here. Omaha has attracted so many great concerts, festivals, and sports and arts events to town in recent years, and Omahans are not just attending these events—they’re turning out in record numbers and spending millions upon millions of dollars on tickets, refreshments, souvenirs, clothing, etc. We’re a family-oriented town and we love gathering friends and family to take in these fun events, right here in our own backyard. Yes, we love our Nebraska football, but we’re happily being afforded the opportunity to enjoy so much more nowadays, and I’m truly thankful for it! So, I may not be headed to Napa Valley in northern California this summer, as I’d love to do again. And while I won’t be taking in the scenic views of the Sierra Nevada Mountains or the Redwoods here in Omaha, I will be saving a pretty penny staying put; and I’ll surely be enjoying some good wine at the Riverfront Wine Festival. That’s a good trade in my book.

Omaha Publications Editor

Dear Visitors: Now: check out Omaha Magazine online. Using flipbook technology to give you a whole new magazine reading experience.

Pages 27-130 www.ReadOnlineNow.com For those visitors interested in reading the rest of this issue of Omaha Magaare included for subscribers only but can be viewed at

zine, go to www.readonlinenow.com and read the entire magazine as well as past issues of all of our publications. For those interested in subscribing to Omaha Magazine, please visit

www.OmahaPublications.com. Hotel Cover features the newly renovated Scott Aquarium at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo. Photo by minorwhitestudios.com 6 

  may/june  •  2012

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*DES MOINES | KANSAS CITY | LEAWOOD | OMAHA 1403 Farnam Street | Downtown Omaha | 402.341.1222

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M a y / J u n e 2 0 1 2 • Vo l u m e 2 9 , I s s u e 2 Editorial Accounts & Operations omaha publications editor

publisher

linda persigehl

todd lemke

city editor

account executive

&

publisher’s assistant

sandy lemke

vicki voet assistant editor

bailey hemphill

sales associate

&

publisher’s assistant

jessica linhart

Natural, Organic, and Eco-Friendly Stuff for Dogs and Cats, and a Chill Out Space for You and Your Pet.

editorial intern

(#21)

k.j. mckercher

vice president

greg bruns

Your Best Friend Will Thank You!

art director

john gawley

vice president of operations

tyler lemke

72nd & Pacific At the Shoppes at Aksarben

graphic designer

katie anderson

executive vice president sales

&

marketing

gil cohen

production artist

mike bruening

www.greenspotomaha.com

sales associate

YOUR LOCALLY OWNED PET STORE

alicia smith hollins

intern graphic designer

scott mcintyre senior sales executive

Interior Design Accent Decor & Floral Design

gwen lemke

p r i n c i pa l p h o t o g r a p h y

minorwhite studios, inc. scott drickey

• bill sitzmann

omaha home senior account executive

FREE In-Home Consultation

stacey penrod

contributing photographers

jess ewald

• christian behr account executive

paige edwards

editorial advisors

rick carey

• david scott bulk subscription manager

sandy besch

contributing writers

suzanne smith arney accounting

leo adam biga

jim heitz

molly garriott distribution manager

pamela s. thompson

Omaha Magazine

mike brewer

To s u b s c r i b e t o - go to -

OmahaPublications.com

Comments? Send your letter to the editor to: letters@omahapublications.com

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All versions of Omaha Magazine are published bimonthly by Omaha Magazine, LTD, P.O. Box 461208, Omaha NE 68046-1208. Telephone: (402) 884-2000; fax (402) 884-2001. Subscription rates: $19.95 for 6 issues (one year), $24.95 for 12 issues (two years). No whole or part of the contents herein may be reproduced without prior written permission of Omaha Magazine, excepting individually copyrighted articles and photographs. Unsolicited manuscripts are accepted, however no responsibility will be assumed for such solicitations. Best of Omaha®™ is a registered tradename of Omaha Magazine.

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9


Omaha fo This is

Compiled by Bailey Hemphill & K.J. McKercher

Daughtry Orpheum Theater May 15

Grammy®-nominated singer Chris Daughtry, guitarists Josh Steely and Brian Craddock, bassist Josh Paul, and drummer Robin Diaz are excited to bring their bigger than life show into theaters across the country to provide an intimate experience for fans. In the course of only five years, Daughtry has had more than their share of career highlights, releasing back-to-back No. 1 albums and four No. 1 hits “It’s Not Over,” “Home,” “Feels Like Tonight,” and “No Surprise,” which earned them four Grammy® nominations, four American Music Award wins, and sold-out shows around the world. The 2012 Break the Spell tour, which makes a stop at the Orpheum Theater, will be even more of a career highlight for Daughtry since they will donate to $1 to Malaria No More—a non-profit organization that provides mosquito netting to prevent malaria in Africa—for every ticket sold. Tickets from $30.50-50.50. 409 S. 16th St. 7:30pm. For more information, visit www.ticketomaha.com or call 402-345-0606. THe Rock N’ Roll Midwest Express: STYX, REO Speedwagon, and Ted Nugent Mid-America Center May 10

The time has come for the ultimate convergence of rock’s finest from the Midwest. STYX, REO Speedwagon, and Ted Nugent will join forces for The Midwest Rock N’ Roll Express 30-date U.S. tour. STYX gained fame in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s. The band is known for hard rock guitar, strong ballads, elements of musical theatre, and their hit songs “Come Sail Away,” “Mr. Roboto,” and “Babe.” Like STYX, REO Speedwagon grew in popularity during the ‘70s and early ‘80s with hits such as “Take It on the Run,” “Can’t Fight This Feeling,” and “Keep on Loving You.” Guitarist, musician, and singer Ted Nugent originally gained a following as the lead guitarist for The Amboy Dukes before taking off on a solo career. Nugent’s hits include “Cat Scratch Fever,” “Stranglehold,” and “Dog Eat Dog.” Tickets from $49-59. One Arena Way, Council Bluffs, IA. 7pm. For more information, visit www.midamericacenter.com or call 712-323-0536. 10 

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or starters 15th Annual Taste of Omaha Heartland of America Park and Lewis & Clark Landing June 1-3

Hairspray OMaha Community Playhouse May 25-June 24

Hairspray is at the Omaha Community Playhouse this summer, and “You Can’t Stop the Beat” of this Tony®-award winning musical! Come experience the story of Tracy Turnblad, a big girl with bigger aspirations in her hometown of Baltimore during the 1960s. After winning a role on a TV dance program and becoming an instant local celebrity, Tracy campaigns to integrate the show, which has kept white and black dancers separated for years. Part social commentary and part redefinition of beauty, this high-energy musical is all fun with catchy music and crazy dance numbers that will have you on your feet, hungry for more! For 85 years, the Omaha Community Playhouse has been bringing high-quality theatrical productions to Omaha. One of the largest community playhouses in the nation, the Playhouse uses local talent on stage and behind the scenes; and with two state-of-the-art theaters and numerous outreach and education programs, it’s one of Omaha’s cultural treasures, spreading the love of fine arts wherever it goes. Recurring daily. $40 adults, $24 students. 6915 Cass St. For more information, visit www.omahaplayhouse.com or call 402-553-0800.

www.ReadOnlineNow.com

Enjoy a unique community celebration showcasing Omaha’s great foods and entertainment. The three-day extravaganza and outdoor food festival will be located in Omaha’s Riverfront parks and will feature the delicious fare of dozens of the area’s many outstanding restaurants. This year, the event will add more entertainment for everyone’s taste on five stages throughout the festival. All stage shows will feature top national entertainers combined with the best local area bands and musicians. There will be cooking demonstrations, festival displays, taste wines, and Beer Gardens overlooking the beautiful fountain and riverfront; and there will also be plenty of family entertainment in the Roberts Dairy Family Village and on the KidZone Stage, including amusement rides, balloons, face painting, magic, exotic animals, and more! Restaurants of all varieties will pitch their tents on the grounds, cooking the specialty items that have made them some of the favorites in the Omaha area. A wide selection will be included—Mexican, Italian, Greek, Asian, Mediterranean, Polish, as well as Continental and American cuisine. Free admission. Heartland of America Park: 800 Douglas St. Lewis & Clark Landing: 515 N. Riverfront Dr. F-Sat/11am-11pm; Sun/11am8pm. For more information, visit www.showofficeonline.com or call 402-346-8003.

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Calendar of Events

www.VisitOmaha.com

2012 May & June

Omaha Farmers Market recurs every Saturday and Sunday through Oct. 14

SASMuseum.com or call 402-944-3100. Through 5/6: Lend Me a Tenor. Omaha Community Playhouse. A sidesplitting comedy, Lend Me a Tenor will have you singing its praises. When a fiery-tempered, world-famous Italian opera star comes to town, he finds himself in a compromising situation, giving an unexpected star the chance of a lifetime. Recurring daily. $40 adults, $24 students. 6915 Cass St. For more information, visit www.omahaplayhouse.com.

Ongoing Events Through 5/6: Great Balls of Fire. Strategic Air & Space Museum. Explore comets, asteroids and meteors as you never have before in the Space Science Institute’s Great Balls of Fire exhibition. This exhibition lets you attempt to save the Earth from an asteroid, or (even more fun) send an asteroid to your zip code and see what would happen! Watch some of your favorite movie and TV clips to determine if they represent science fact or science fiction. Recurring daily. $12 adults, $6 children. 28210 West Park Hwy, Ashland. 10am-5pm. For more information, visit www.

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Through 5/13: Wicked Plants: Colorful Characters from the Dark Side of the Plant World. Lauritzen Gardens. Enter the ramshackle old greenhouse of Dr. Violet Mandrake to discover plants that poison, puncture, annoy, invade, intoxicate, and otherwise offend to delight the mind and inspire curiosity about the evildoers that may be lurking in our own backyards. Recurring daily. $6 (through March), $7 (April-October), $3 children 6-12. 100 Bancroft St. 9am5pm. For more information, visit www.lauritzengardens.org or call 402-346-4002. Through 5/13: East Texas Hot Links. John Beasley Theater & Workshop. During the summer of 1955 in east Texas, times are changing, the Klan is active, and young black men have been disappearing or turning up dead. This night, Delmus wants to celebrate getting a new job but the other regulars are skeptical, warning him—but betrayal catches all of them and life at Top o’ the Hill is changed forever. Recurring weekly on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. 3010 Q St, La Fern

Williams Center. Th-Sat/7:30pm; Sun/3pm. For more information, visit www.johnbeasleytheater.org or call 402-502-5767. Through 5/13: James and the Giant Peach. The Rose Theater. When young James steps inside a giant larger-than-life magical peach, it breaks from its stem and tumbles to the sea, sending him on a great adventure. Recurring on weekends. $16 general admission, free for members. 2001 Farnam St. F/7pm; Sat/2 & 7pm; Sun/2pm. For more information, visit www.rosetheater.org or call 402-345-4849. Through 5/27: A Streetcar Named Desire. Omaha Community Playhouse. A Streetcar Named Desire shows a turbulent confrontation between traditional values in the American South and the rough-edged, aggressive materialism of the new world. This devastating portrait of delusion and cruelty is one of Tennessee Williams’ finest works. Recurring daily. $35 adults, $21 students. 6915 Cass St. For more information, visit www. omahaplayhouse.com. Through 5/27: Drawn to Fashion: The Illustrations of Mary Mitchell. Durham Museum. Learn about the lost art of fashion illustration, Omaha’s

rich retail history, and advertising during an era before Photoshop. Showcases 150 drawings taken from the private collection of over 1,000 drawings by well-known local fashion illustrator Mary J. Mitchell. Recurring daily. $7 adults, $6 seniors, $5 children 3-12, free for children under 2. 801 S. 10th St. Tu/10am-8pm; W-Sat/10am-5pm; Sun/1-5pm. For more information, visit www.durhammuseum.org or call 402-444-5071. Through 5/31: Boys Town Student Art Show. Boys Town. Boys Town youth put their best artistic efforts on display at the Hall of History. This show features a variety of artwork from residents of all ages. Recurring daily. Free admission. 10am-4pm. For more information, visit www.boystown. org or call 402-498-1186. Through 10/13: The Deuce – North 24th Walking Tour. Dreamland Park. A guided walking tour of 6-7 blocks, 7-9 sites, and 75-90 minutes highlighting the arts, music, architecture, history, and local businesses in this community of locally and nationally recognized people, buildings, and events. Recurring weekly on Saturday. Donations accepted. 24th & Lake Sts. For more information, visit www.north24thomahatour.com.

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo in South Omaha from May 4-6. Credit: Alma Gutierrez

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C. Stanosheck, D.D.S. Cosmetic and Restorative Dentistry

Through 10/13: Vientecuatro – South 24th Walking Tour. A guided walking tour of 5-6 blocks, 8-10 sites, and 60-90 minutes will highlight the arts, architecture, ethnic culture, history, and local businesses in this nationally registered commercial district. Donations accepted. NW Corner of 24th & N sts. For more information, visit www.south24thomahatour.com. Through 10/14: Omaha Farmers Market. Omaha Farmers Market. Offering the best selection of fresh produce and meats, as well as a wide variety of unique specialty items, gourmet foods, fruits and vegetables, dairy products, cut flowers, and bedding plants. Recurring every Saturday and Sunday. Free admission. 11th & Jackson Sts. Sat/8am-12:30pm; Sun/9am-1pm. For more information, visit www.omahafarmersmarket. org or call 402-345-5401. Through 11/4: Sunday Acoustic Music Series. Soaring Wings Vineyard. Bring your lawn chair or blanket and listen to some wonderfully talented local musicians! Rain, shine, or wind, the music plays and if possible we sit outside, if not possible we sit in the party room! Recurring weekly on Sunday. Free admission. 17111 S. 138th St. 2-5pm. For more information, visit www. soaringwingswine.com or call 402-253-2479.

She Chose a Stanosheck Smile Amanda Mueller, Invisalign Patient

The Clear Alternative To Braces

6 Years in a Row!

Christopher A. Stanosheck, D.D.S., P.C. 9202 West Dodge St. Omaha, NE 68114 (402) 884-1607 www.ClearBracesOmaha.com Like us on Facebook!

Through 11/13: 2nd Annual “Shakespeare on the Silverscreen” Film Festival. Aksarben Cinema. See Much Ado About Nothing (1993), Romeo and Juliet (1968), Julius Caesar (1950), and Coriolanus (2012). Recurring weekly on Tuesday. 2110 S. 67th St. 6pm. For more information, visit www.nebraskashakespeare.com. Through 11/14: Westroads Kids Club. Westroads Mall. It’s Edu-tainment! The Amazing Bubble Show! As the Omaha Children’s Museum’s most popular science show, you will experience giant bubbles that float, bubbles that turn into smoke, and even bubbles you can stand in! The first 220 kids will receive an amazing bubble gift to take home to create their own science! Recurring every 4th Wednesday. Free admission. 10000 California St. 10:30-11:30am. For more information, visit www. westroadsmall.com or call 402-397-2398.

• Distinctive, One of a Kind Jewelry • Collection of Antique Jewelry • Custom Jewelry Designed for You • Silver Smithing Classes • Jewelry Repair

MAY EVENTS 5/1-9/30: Batter Up…Baseball at Boys Town. Boys Town. See memorabilia from Boys Town’s baseball history, including Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Ted Williams, Hank Aaron, Mickey Mantel, and Johnny Bench on display at the Hall of History. Recurring daily. Free admission. 14057 Flanagan Blvd. 10am-4pm. For more information, visit www.boystown.org or call 402-498-1186.

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13013 West Center Road Montclair On Center 402.558.1307 • SilverofOz.com may/june  •  2012  

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Calendar of Events 2012 May & June

Momix Botanica will be at the Orpheum on May 11th.

www.VisitOmaha.com 5/4: Calvin Keys. Love’s Jazz & Art Center. Guitarist Calvin Keys, renowned for his long and distinguished jazz career, is coming to Omaha. You may best remember Mr. Keys for his work as a sideman and featured soloist with Ahmad Jamal, or his tenure with the great Ray Charles! Students get $5 off admission. 2510 N. 24th St. 5-7pm. For more information, visit www.lovesjazzartcenter. org or call 402-502-5291. 5/4-5: Men’s Garden Club Plant Sale. Douglas/Sarpy County Extension Service. Men’s Garden Club Plant Sale is Omaha’s oldest/largest plant sale. Annuals, hostas, assorted, and wildflowers and perennials, as well as heirloom tomatoes will be on sale. Recurring daily. Free admission. 8015 W. Center Rd. F/5:30-8pm; Sat/9am-2pm. For more information, visit www.omaha-mensgarden-club.com. 5/4-6: Cinco de Mayo Festival. South Omaha. Celebrate Cinco de Mayo in Omaha! Featuring a parade, carnival games and rides,

a fiesta, live entertainment, contests, authentic Mexican food, vendor booths, and more! Free admission. S. 25th St between O & N Sts. For more information, visit www.cincodemayoomaha.com or call 402-734-3240. 5/5: Omaha Symphony: Stayin’ Alive—A Celebration of the ‘70s. Holland Performing Arts Center. Catch Saturday Night Fever with the music of the ‘70s. Boogie down to the decade’s best songs from artists like Chicago, Earth, Wind & Fire, Stevie Wonder, and The Eagles. Tickets from $25-70. 1200 Douglas St. 8pm. For more information, visit www.omahasymphony.org or call 402-342-3560. 5/5: Rockbrook Village Spring Fever Craft Show. Rockbrook Village Shopping Center. This juried craft show, now in its 25th year, offers the finest in regional crafts. Crafters vie for the limited number of spaces and shoppers delight in the variety and quality of crafts. Free admission. 2800 S. 110th Ct. 10am-5pm.

402.738.5100 14 

  may/june  •  2012

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For more information, visit www.rockbrookvillage.com or call 402-390-0890. 5/5: La Mesa 2012 Cinco de Mayo Event. La Mesa, voted Omaha’s #1 Mexican Restaurant 9 years in a row in Omaha Magazine’s Best of Omaha® contest, is hosting a special Cinco de Mayo tent party on Sat., May 5th at the 84th & Tara Plaza Papillion location. The event will run from 4pm to 12pm and will feature mechanical bull rides, a taco-eating contest, food and drink specials, and live music with Grand Theft Girlfriend. There is no charge for the event. Must be 21 or older. For more information, call 402-593-0983. 5/5-6: 11th Annual Hot Shops Art Center’s Spring Open House. The Omaha art venue’s open house event features fun and informative art demonstrations and live music, with most resident artists opening their shops to the public. All the galleries host events, and the building’s walls are filled with a variety of art for sale. Sat/12-8pm; Sun/12-5pm. 1301 Nicholas St. Go to www.hotshopsartcenter.com for more info. 5/11: Momix “Botanica.” Orpheum Theater. A company of dancer-illusionists that, for 20 years, has celebrated its ability to conjure up a world of surrealistic images using props, light, shadow, humor and the human body. Tickets start at $25. 409 S. 16th St. 8pm. For more information, visit www.ticketomaha.com or call 402-345-0606. 5/11-6/17: Spring Awakening. Blue Barn Theatre. Explores the journey from adolescence to adulthood with poignancy and passion. Based on a novel written in 1891, Spring Awakening follows a group of late 19th century German students as they navigate teenage self-discovery and coming-of-age anxiety in a powerful celebration of youth and rebellion. Recurring daily. $25 adults, $20 students, seniors 65+. 614 S. 11th St. Th-Sat/7:30pm; Sun/6pm. For more information, visit www.bluebarn. org or call 402-345-1576. 5/12: Omaha Symphony: Baroque Fireworks. Holland Performing Arts Center. Experience the best of Baroque with popular favorites like Bach’s exquisite “Brandenburg Concerto No. 5” and Pachabel’s classic “Canon in D,” culminating in Handel’s “Music for the Royal Fireworks.” Tickets from $15-80. 1200 Douglas St. 8pm. For more information, visit www.omahasymphony. org or call 402-342-3560.

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Calendar of Events

www.VisitOmaha.com

2012 May & June

Seussical the Musical will be at The Rose Theater from June 1-17. Bancroft St. 10am-2pm. For more information, visit www. lauritzengardens.org or call 402-346-4002. 5/13: Omaha Symphony: Ensemble Concert. First United Methodist Church. The Ensemble Series puts Omaha Symphony orchestra members in the spotlight, showcasing their talents through chamber repertoire. Tickets are $19. 7020 Cass St. 2pm. For more information, visit www.omahasymphony. org or call 402-342-3560. 5/15: Daughtry. Orpheum Theater. Grammy®-nominated singer Chris Daughtry, guitarists Josh Steely and Brian Craddock, bassist Josh Paul, and drummer Robin Diaz are excited to bring their bigger than life show into theaters across the country to provide an intimate experience for fans. For every ticket sold, Daughtry will donate $1 to “Malaria No More.” Tickets from $25-50. 409 S. 16th St. 7:30pm. For more information, visit www.ticketomaha. com or call 402-345-0606. 5/12: Omaha Beef Football vs. Nebraska Danger. Omaha Civic Auditorium. Omaha’s only indoor professional football team hosts the Nebraska Danger in their 6th home game of the season. Tickets from $16-45. 1804 Capitol Ave. 7pm. For more information, visit www.beeffootball.com or call 402-346-2333. 5/13: Mother’s Day Brunch. Lauritzen Gardens. Make your plans now for a wonderful brunch among the flowers, catered by Hap Abraham Catering. Reservations and pre-payment are required by May 9. $25 adults, $12.50 ages 6-12. 100

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5/18-20: Omaha Symphony: Radiance. Holland Performing Arts Center. The perfect blend of sparkle and soul, “Radiance” will dazzle you with Motown classics. Add gorgeous harmonies and choreography, and you’ve got the ultimate feel-good show! Recurring daily. Tickets from $15-80. 1200 Douglas St. F-Sat/8pm; Sun/2pm. For more information, visit www.omahasymphony.org or call 402-342-3560. 5/19: Haute City. Midtown Crossing. An interactive shopping experience in Midtown Crossing. Savor, sample, and shop new

products and services that suit your lifestyle. Discover local and national brands in a pop-up retail environment during this daylong lifestyle festival. Rooftop VIP Fashion Production showcasing national designers, and live performance by Quixotic Fusion followed by a chic VIP after-party. 33rd & Farnam Sts. Noon-midnight. For more information, visit www.hautecity.com. 5/26: Omaha Symphony: Gifts from the Sea. UNO Strauss Performing Arts Center. Set sail with three diverse composers who were all inspired by the sea. Then batten down the hatches for Schubert’s stormy “Tragic” Symphony. Tickets are $30. 6001 Dodge St. 7pm. For more information, visit www.omahasymphony.org or call 402-342-3560. 5/29-7/1: All-Members Show. Artist’s Cooperative Gallery Ltd. In this all-members show, over 30 artists will display their work in media ranging from painting, printmaking, and photography to woodwork and metalwork, ceramics, jewelrymaking, and glass art. Recurring daily. Free admission. 405 S. 11th St. Tu-Th/11am-5pm; F-Sat/11am10pm; Sun/12-6pm. For more information, visit www.artistcoopgallery.com or call 402-342-9617. 5/26-9/9: Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Omaha Children’s Museum. Follow the Yellow Brick Road to 10,000 square feet of Oz fun. The Emerald City comes alive with Scarecrow, the Tin Man, the Cowardly Lion, Dorothy, and Toto, too. Recurring every day, except Monday. 500 S. 20th St. Tu-F/10am-4pm; Sat/9am-5pm; Sun/1-5pm. For more information, visit www.ocm.org or call 402-342-6164.

JUNE EVENTS 6/1: Omaha Beef Football vs. Cedar Rapids Titans. Omaha Civic Auditorium. Omaha’s only indoor professional football team battles the Cedar Rapids Titans. Tickets from $16-45. 1804 Capitol Ave. 7pm. For more information, visit www.beeffootball.com or call 402-346-2333. 6/1-17: Seussical – The Musical. The Rose Theater. Horton the Elephant proves the powers of friendship, family, and community to be triumphant over all adversity. The Cat in the Hat and Gertrude McFuzz join in the fun as Horton attempts to do the impossible—save Jojo and the Invisible Whos from danger and protect Mayzie La Bird’s abandoned egg! Recurring weekly on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Tickets from $20-25. 2001 Farnam St. Th-F/7pm; SatSun/2pm. For more information, visit www.rosetheater.org or call 402-345-4849. 6/1- 8/31: Rockbrook Village Friday Concerts. Rockbrook Village Shopping Center. Local musicians entertain families every Friday night throughout the summer. Bring Granny, a date, or the kids and a lawn chair for a delightful evening. Recurring weekly on Fridays. Free admission. 2800 S. 110th Ct. 7-8pm. For more information, visit www.rockbrookvillage.com or call 402-390-0890. 6/2-3: Nebraska Children’s Home Society’s Sand in the City. CenturyLink Center Omaha. View the sand sculptures, enjoy great food, and local entertainment at the family-fun activities during Sand in the City, Downtown Omaha’s ultimate beach party. Recurring daily. Free admission. 455 N. 10th St. Sat/10am-8pm; Sun/11am-5pm. www.OmahaPublications.com


For more information, visit www.sandinthecityomaha. com or call 402-898-7783. 6/5: New Edition. Orpheum Theater. Celebrating the 30th anniversary of their first chart-topping R&B hit “Candy Girl,” the original boy band super group, New Edition, comes to Omaha’s elegant Orpheum Theater. Reunite with the band for an evening packed with solo hits that include “Popcorn Love,” “Is This the End?” and “I’m Still in Love With You.” Tickets from $45-100. 409 S. 16th St. 7:30pm. For more information, visit www. ticketomaha.com or call 402-345-0606. 6/8-9: Omaha Symphony: Concerto for Orchestra. Holland Performing Arts Center. Celebrate the virtuosity of our musicians with Bartok’s “Concerto For Orchestra.” This engaging favorite gives each section a chance to shine. With Beethoven’s lighthearted Eighth, it’s a not-to-be-missed conclusion to the season! Recurring daily. Tickets from $15-75. 1200 Douglas St. 8pm. For more information, visit www.omahasymphony.org or call 402-342-3560. 6/9: Omaha Rollergirls vs. Lincoln No Coast Derby Girls. Mid-America Center. The Omaha Rollergirls are Omaha’s premier all-female flat-track roller derby league. Buff and bruised, these women promise to deliver a powerful punch of both sport and spectacle. All home games will be a double-header format featuring both Omaha Rollergirls teams—Omaha AAA and Omaha All Stars. $10 advance tickets, $12 day of show, free for kids 10 & under. One Arena Way, Council Bluffs, IA. 7pm. For more information, visit www.midamericacenter.com or call 712-323-0536. 6/24: Nebraska Wind Symphony Concert. Stinson Park at Aksarben Village. Omaha’s Community Concert Band presents a free summer concert. Activities begin with the NWS Swingtones Big Band followed by the Wind Symphony. Free admission. 67th & Center Sts. 6pm. For more information, visit www.nebraskawindsymphony.com or call 402-216-0325.

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MAY 25-JUNE 24, 2012

APRIL 27-27, 2012

Book by Mark O’Donnell and Scott Wittman; Music by Thomas Meehan; Lyrics by Marc Shaiman

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  may/june  •  2012

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Summer Fun In Omaha!

Credit: Roger Barnes

T

his summer, both Omahans and visitors alike will find a wealth of events and attractions to enjoy. Whether you’re a sports nut, a fan of theatre and the arts, a foodie or wine connoisseur, or a music lover, there’s something for everyone in Omaha this season, and many events are family-friendly and free! In town for one event? Why not spend the night (or two) and take in a few!

Get ready to plan your summer of fun in the Big O!

For the Sports Fan 2012 NCAA Men’s College World Series, TD Ameritrade Park, June 14-26. The NCAA Men’s College World Series returns on the Road to Omaha® for the Greatest Show on Dirt®. Since 1950, the College World

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Series has been held in Omaha, and it has become a major event for summer tourists. Starting with the Opening Celebration Day on Thursday, June 14 at TD Ameritrade Park, the College World Series kicks off with team autograph sessions, batting practices, opening ceremonies, and fireworks. The opening rounds begin on Friday, June 15 and are played until either Thursday, June 21 or Friday, June 22, if necessary. The best-of-three Championship Series begins on Sunday, June 24 where teams will bat it out to become the next College World Series champions. Will it be South Carolina again, or will college baseball fans have a new champion to celebrate? Free admission for the openingday celebration. Ticket prices vary per game/seating. 1200 Mike Fahey St. For more information, visit www. cwsomaha.com or call 402-554-4404.

U.S. Olympic Team Swim Trials, CenturyLink Center Omaha, June 25 – July 2. The U.S. Olympic Team Swim Trials are returning to the CenturyLink Center this summer. The weeklong competition will draw the best swimmers in the country—from Michael Phelps to Missy Franklin—to prove their prowess and win a spot in the 2012 Olympics in London. Omaha previously hosted the Swim Trials in 2008. With over 160,000 fans in attendance, the 2008 trials smashed the previous attendance record for a U.S. swimming event. With 1,500 swimmers projected to compete, the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Swim Trials are shaping up to be faster, fiercer, and bigger than ever! Preliminary trials will begin at 10am daily, and finals will be held at 7pm daily. 455 N. 10th St. Tickets are on sale at www.ticketmaster. com. For more information, visit www.centurylinkcenteromaha.com or call 402-341-1500.

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Summer Fun In Omaha 17th Cox Classic, Champions Run Golf Club, July 30 - August 5. The Cox Classic, presented by Lexus of Omaha, enters its 17th year in Omaha. Again this year, Champions Run Golf Club will host the annual event, which attract some of golf’s premier contenders on the Nationwide Tour. Since the tournament’s inception, more than $1.9 Million has been raised for local charities. With 113,000 spectators in 2011 (Thursday – Sunday), the Cox Classic has become one of Omaha’s most popular annual sporting events, second only to the College World Series. The Cox Classic 2012 schedule of events includes: a Pro-Am Pairing Party, a Subway Restaurant Youth Clinic; an Autograph Day; and daily Michelob Ultra 19th Hole Parties in addition to the pro tournament. Visit www. coxclassic.com for details. For tickets and packages, call the tournament office, 402-399-1800.

For the Music Lover Jazz on the Green, Midtown Crossing at Turner Park, Thursdays, July 5 – August 9. Join Omaha Performing Arts on Thursdays this summer for Jazz on the Green. The cherished concert series is held in Turner Park, located in the heart of Midtown Crossing. Since 1985 more than half a million people have spent Thursday evenings relaxing on the lawn while listening to the music of Jazz on the Green. This year’s concert line-up will feature an assortment of Jazz styles—from boogie woogie and big band swing to Latin rhythms and funk melodies. There is sure to be something that will appeal to all Jazz lovers—and perhaps inspire new fans. Lead sponsors include Mutual of Omaha, Alegent Health and Omaha Steaks. Concerts offer free admission and free parking. 
Venue opens for seating at 5pm. Concerts begin at 7pm. For more information and a schedule of performers, visit www. jazzonthegreenomaha.com. Red Sky Music Festival, TD Ameritrade Park, July 17-22. The Metropolitan Entertainment & Convention Authority and Live Nation have come together to bring

top entertainment and breakout artists to Downtown Omaha for the Red Sky Music Festival, now in its second year. The festival will feature all genres of artists on three stages, including winners of the Battle of the Local Bands. Main stage featured bands and musicians, as well as featured bands and musicians on Stages B+C, include some of the hottest touring groups and performers today. Each Main Stage ticket purchase includes a one-day pass for the Festival Grounds, Stages B+C, good for admission on the day listed on the ticket. For more information on Omaha’s premier music festival and names of acts as they’re announced, go to www.redskyfestival.com. Riverfront Jazz & Blues Festival, Lewis & Clark Landing, 515 Riverfront Dr., July 13-14. The rich smooth sounds of jazz and blues will permeate through Downtown Omaha as national, regional and local artist will perform some of the greatest music jazz and blues has to offer. Plenty of food and beverage will be available for purchase. Tickets available for sale at Ticket Omaha box office, Homer’s, Lefores New Look Fashion and Love’s Jazz & Arts Center, or at www.ticketomaha.com. For a list of performers, ticket prices and additional info, visit www.omahajazzandblues.com for more information.

Calendar of Events May

June

U Exhibit Urban Artist Collective II 4&5 U 6pm. JazzAfter5 with special guest Calvin Keys 17 U 5-8pm. JazzAfter5 with special guest Curly Martin Trio 26 U 3-5pm.Jumpin’ Out Young gifted & Talented

1 U 5-8pm. JazzAfter5 with the Zone 1&2 U North Omaha Arts & Culture Expo 15 U 5-8pm.Jazz After5 with Darryl White 23 U 3-5pm.Jumpin’ Out Young gifted & Talented

July

August

6 U 5-8 pm. JazzAfter5 LJAC’s Jazz All Stars

All month Young At Art Youth Exhibit

12 U Young At Art Youth Exhibit

3 U 5-8 pm. Jazz After 5 with In The Gruv

20 U 5-8pm. Jazz After5 with Ben Harris Trio

17 U 5-8 pm. Jazz After 5 with Cymbolton

28 U 3-5pm.Jumpin’ Out Young gifted & Talente

25 U 3-5pm.Jumpin’ Out Young gifted & Talented

For updates on events visit us @ http://lovesjazzartcenter.org/ exhibits U live music U events Tuesday-Friday 11am-5pm U Saturday 11am-3pm 2510 N. 24th St. U 402.502.5291 20 

  may/june  •  2012

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Summer Fun In Omaha! with valid ID to attend. Tickets are $30 general admission; $50 VIP, or $40-$80 for Connoisseur Combo. A Designated Driver is available for $10 at the door. Visit www.omahabeerfest.com for more details. Nebraska Balloon & Wine Festival, Coventry Campus, Just south of 204th & Q streets, August 10-11. The Nebraska Balloon & Wine Festival Credit: Sherry Schmillen Minge is a unique, two-day event featuring Friday and For Food and SpirSaturday evening hot air balloon its Enthusiasts launches and glows, as well as an array delicious foods, barbeque, 2nd Annual Omaha Beer Fest, Aksarben Viland unique handcrafted wines lage, 67th & Center streets, May 18-19. Enjoy a from some of the best wineries in good brew? Stop by the 2nd Annual Omaha Beer Fest. the country. Included: A Nebraska The festival allows patrons to choose from over 150 beers Wine Showcase, and a Food & Wine from over 40 breweries at tented booths throughout beauExperience VIP Sessions.  Music tiful Stinson Park at Aksarben Village. Mix and mingle from local bands and musicians with brewmasters and VIPs in the brewing industry, and a variety of family entertainattend Beer Academy classes, listen to live music from two ment, including Marketplace Vilbands daily, attend the Homebrewer Expo, and enjoy the lage, arts & crafts, feature displays, VIP Experience with the MOJO Lounge. Must be 21+ pony rides, and activities for the kids

will also be featured. Balloons launch by 7:30pm. Gates open at 5pm to give spectators an early glimpse at the hot air balloons as pilots assemble them for their flights. (Weather Permitting) Visit www.showofficeonline.com/ NebraskaWineBallloonFestival for more info. 3rd Annual Omaha Riverfront Wine Festival, Stinson Park, Aksarben Village, 67th & Center Streets, August 24-25. Get ready to raise your glass at Omaha’s biggest wine event of the year! The Omaha Riverfront Wine Festival is a casual, outdoor event featuring food from Omaha’s Dante Pizzeria and Bread Oven French Bakery, a variety of music, including jazz, tropical

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Summer Fun In Omaha! and R&B sounds, and, of course, wine. Fifty wineries will be present, offering guests samples from tented wine booths set up throughout Stinson Park. Beer lovers will also find samples from about a dozen breweries. Attendees can sign up for Wine Academy and take classes on wine and food pairings (including chocolate and cheese), wine mixology, and other topics. Both Grand Tasting and VIP Experience tickets are available by calling 402-850-6776. Must be 21 or older with valid ID to attend. Offered by Urban Events, Inc. Go to www.riverfrontwinefestival.com for more info.

For the Theatre & Arts Lover

Gently Loved Designer Furniture, Vintage, Antiques and Estate Items 10,000 Square Foot Showroom, Open To The Public

38th Annual Summer Arts Festival, Along Gene Leahy Mall, Downtown Omaha, June 8-10. Omaha’s premier destination for art & entertainment, held in Downtown Omaha. Featuring 135 of the nation’s finest visual artists, two stages of continuous entertainment including national performers, and a large, hands-on children’s fair. A free event perfect for art lovers and families alike. For a list of exhibiting artists, performing musicians and food vendors and more, visit www.summerarts.org

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26th Annual Shakespeare on the Green, Elmwood Park, University of Nebraska at Omaha Campus, June 21-July 6. Elmwood Park will again host the annual Nebraska Shakespeare on the Green, a free, open-air event on the UNO campus. Over the years, Shakespeare on the Green has become a beloved summer tradition, and the festival has gained national recognition for its high-quality productions as well as for the beauty of its park setting. The event is also a wonderful way to enjoy two of the Bard’s plays: Julius Caesar: June 21-24, July 6,8; The Comedy of Errors: June 28-30; July 5,7. Recurring every three days. Free admission. South of 64th & Dodge sts. Activities at 6pm, pre-show seminars at 6:30pm, performance at 8pm. For more information, visit www.nebraskashakespeare.com or call 402-280-4396.

For the Museum Lover

New Items for Summer!

To Live Forever: Egyptian Treasures from the Brooklyn Museum, Joslyn Art Museum, 22th & Dodge Streets, Through June 3. To Live Forever: Egyptian Treasures from the Brooklyn Museum exhibit will explore the ancient Egyptians’ beliefs about life, death, and the afterlife; mummification; the conduct of a funeral; and the different types of tombs. For more information, visit www.joslyn.org or call 402-342-3300.

14909 Industrial Road • 402-334-7556 Open 10 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. Mon.-Sat. www.pilchersomaha.com

Mindbender Mansion Exhibit, The Durham Museum, 801 S. 10th Street, May 26-Sept. 2. Enter the wonderfully puzzling world of Mindbender Mansion this summer at Omaha’s Durham Museum. Created by the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, Mindbender Mansion is an eclectic place full of brainteasers and interactive challenges guaranteed to test the brain power and problem-solving skills of even the most experienced puzzlers. This magical exhibition is fun for kids and adults of all ages. Go to www.durhammuseum.org to learn more.

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Visit the Union Pacific Railroad Museum to experience “Building America,” an immersive new exhibit featuring innovative video-game technology; to relive the height of passenger rail travel; and to learn how Union Pacific and America’s progress have been inextricably linked for 150 years.

200 Pearl Street • Council Bluffs, IA 51503 Open Tuesday through Saturday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Free Admission • (712) 329-8307 Find us at uprrmuseum.org, and on Facebook and Twitter.

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Omaha Art Story by Suzanne Smith Arney • Photos by minorwhitestudios.com

Susan Knight

Beguiled by Water

B

eguiled” is a word Susan Knight chooses to describe her fascination with

water. Its meaning, “to influence by trickery,” implies some sort of magic or spell (as does “fascinate”). And indeed, looking at Archetypal Water, a wall of 20 double-hung images of waterflow, induces a sense of gentle, rhythmic calm. Brush strokes of aqua blue ink flow across translucent Mylar sheets; their centers are network medallions, filled with traces of lines. The buttery acrylic ink goes on with a fluidity that is in strong contrast to the precise control needed for hand-cutting with an X-Acto knife. These opposite energies reflect the continuous call-and-response dance of water, rolling in a below-surface, interdependent dance as patterned as choreography. Knight knows water. She grew up on the waterways near Grand Rapids, Mich., and says her strongest connection to Nebraska is an understanding of its waterways. For the past decade, her artistic focus has been water, combined with techniques of hand-cut paper. She has said, “The cuts produce light, shadow and tangible depth, which seems appropriate to and a metaphor for the power of water.” Describing the nature of water as paradoxical, she says, “Its forces create, produce powerful energy. That same force can take your life.” In an untitled work, a surface view of water takes shape from white parchment pieces on navy bookbinding cloth. Water’s drama can be read in the high-contrast colors and definitive shapes. The latter are pieces cut away from an earlier 24 

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work—negative space has become positive; empty space has become filled with meaning and purpose. A paradox. Another composition, sculptural, combines acrylic cubes and hand-cut paper, literally putting water on a pedestal. Knight hopes to engage viewers, saying, “All of us must become involved in protecting the water we have.” These multiple aspects of water can be seen in Knight’s exhibition, Glimpses, at RNG Gallery. For yet another perspective, choreographer Josie Metal-Corbin interprets water kinesthetically in a dance created to celebrate the exhibition opening. “The elements of art,” she says, “are the same for dance—line, color, impetus.” It will be performed by Kyan Doubet, accompanied by Christina Allred on cello. If Glimpses is about water’s archetypal mystery, another exhibition, Watered Down, at the Norfolk Arts Center, is more directly educational. It addresses groundwater, the primary source of drinking water in Nebraska, and our responsibility to maintain >> www.OmahaPublications.com


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Simulcast Racing from All the Top Tracks Over 600 TV’s • Keno

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<< healthy supplies. Collaborating with installation artist Suzan Shutan, geoscientist Sue Lackey, students and the community, Knight envisions “a colorful, maze-like, morphing environment constructed from repurposed, recyclable and natural materials.” “I’m very excited about an exhibition that is both unique and relevant to the area,” says Program Coordinator Melinda Kozel. A tour de force component is Knight’s hand-cut map of Nebraska’s groundwater system on three panels of reflective Tyvek. Measuring about 4½ x 11 feet in total, the project takes at least two weeks to cut, says Knight, and requires “absolute concentration.” The art of hand-cut paper has its source in German scherenschnitte as well as in China, where the tradition dates back to the sixth century. Knight discovered its range and potential during a 2004 cultural and professional trip to China. The skill is both playful and precise; its intractability encourages her to take risks. The cuts through the picture plane, she likens to windows of insight. Knight’s exhibitions have the power to beguile us with her mastery of a medium that is less familiar to most of us. They also have the power to educate us about one of the most crucial issues facing the world today. Glimpses, June 8-24, RNG Gallery, along with Dixie Quicks restaurant, new location 157 W Broadway in Council Bluffs www.dixiequicks.com

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4912 Shannon Dr • Papillion, NE 68133 402-949-0463 • llemke@npdodge.com • www.loulemke.com 26 

  may/june  •  2012

Watered Down, opens May 31 and continues through June 28. Norfolk Arts Center www.norfolkartscenter.org www.OmahaPublications.com


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Style Shot Story by Linda Persigehl • Photo by minorwhitestudios.com • Fashion provided by Bliss Boutique

Julie Hillmer

A

Fabulous at 49

sked to identify her fashion influ-

ences, Omaha Magazine Style Shot Julie Hillmer cites the style icon Audrey Hepburn. “She is simply elegant.” Also, her sisters. “They help me not to be too conservative, AKA boring.” Hillmer, married to Tom and mother of three, including twin girls, 17, and a boy, 14, describes her personal taste as classic, thought she likes to wear something fun with every outfit to add a little flair. “I think accessories such as scarves, fun shoes, and jewelry can change an outfit dramatically,” says Hillmer, who once did some modeling work. “I love bright colors but tend to stick to neutrals, using color as an accessory.” Not a big department store shopper, Hillmer prefers the intimate atmosphere of smaller Omaha boutiques, most notably Bliss Boutique. Hillmer maintains her youthful skin and flattering figure with a healthy diet of fruits and veggies—“I try to limit red meat and white flour and just eat the naughty stuff in moderation”— and by using sunscreen with an SPF of 45 every day. “I cleanse my skin with Cetaphil cleanser and have been a fan of Retin A for many years.” She also keeps fit with an active lifestyle, playing tennis, bike riding and taking walks, as well as participating in Pilates and group fitness classes. “I like to mix it up.” Hillmer says spending time with family is her highest priority. She also supports many local causes, including the Open Door Mission, Salvation Army, and the Hope Center, as well as volunteering at her church. She no doubt defies her 49 years, and sets a great example for us all.

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Kristina Davey, Olympian

Special Olympics Nebraska

Celebrating 40 Years

T

he Special Olympics is a global movement of people creating a new

world of inclusion and community, regardless of ability or disability. The organization’s mission is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them the opportunity to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy, and participate in sharing of gifts, skills, and friendships. The goal is that all persons with intellectual disabilities have the opportunity to become productive citizens who are accepted and respected in their communities. This year, Special Olympics Nebraska (SONE) is celebrating its 40th year. “It’s hard to believe that, as recent as 50 years ago, people with an intellectual disability or cognitive delay were put away in institutions,” says Carolyn Chamberlin, President and CEO of Special Olympics Nebraska, who started with the organization in 2006 before moving to the executive role in 2008. SONE hosts more than 40 competitions across the state for athletes at the local and regional level, including delegations in more than 100 communities and seven state competitions. “Outside of Nebraska, athletes and volunteers have the opportunity to be involved on a 30 

  may/june  •  2012

global scale, such as traveling to Greece last summer for [the Special Olympics] World Summer Games,” says Chamberlin. Each year, SONE also hosts several fundraising and awareness events, including the Polar Plunge and Breakfast of Champions. Chamberlin believes the Special Olympics has made a difference in the community because it allows people with intellectual disabilities to experience the excitement and empowerment of sports. “Families are given hope and opportunities to network, [and] our athletes gain the confidence and hard-work ethic needed to make them successful in all aspects of their lives.” www.OmahaPublications.com


Kristina Davey is one such person who has been changed by the Special Olympics, which she has been involved with for about 25 years now. She’s competed in track and field, bowling, basketball, and gymnastics, but she currently competes in aquatics because it’s her favorite. “It’s something she’s done since she was an infant,” says her father, Mat. “We started her in a swim program when she was young, and she just blossomed.” Kristina says the strokes she does in aquatics vary, but her best are the 100-meter backstroke, 200-meter freestyle, and individual medley. She also swims twice a week with the UNO Masters Swim Program and has Special Olympics aquatics practice every Sunday. Kristina got involved with the Special Olympics because it’s something she knew would carry throughout her life. “It’s an overwhelming experience for me, personally, because of all the great things that have happened for me. It just opened doors and has given me a sense of pride and accomplishment for what I’ve overcome as a person and as a competitor.” For Mat and his wife, Jane, watching Kristina swim and compete is uplifting. “It’s the pride in what she does,” he says. “We’ve had the experience now of going to two world games and the national games with her. To see what these adults can do is amazing.” Mat adds that many members of their extended family come to support Kristina when she competes. “The whole family gives her the star treatment.” Kristina received Citizen of the Year from the Arc of Nebraska in 2008 for being a positive role model in the community, a voice for the Special Olympics, and completing over 3,000 hours of volunteer work. She has spoken about SONE at the governor’s mansion, at local high schools, and to state representatives. She has even been interviewed for Family Circle on the Special Olympics and got to meet Eunice Kennedy Shriver, who started the organization. “[Kristina’s] a global messenger,” laughs Mat. “Special Olympics really does transform lives of people both with and without intellectual disabilities,” says Chamberlin.

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Story by Leo Adam Biga • Photos by minorwhitestudios.com • Hair & Makeup by Mary Beth Pinckney

omaha’s

PITCH MAN

Entrepreneur extraordinaire Willy Theisen is back with his next big business venture

W

illy Theisen has accomplished amazing feats in

the restaurant business. He founded a national name brand in Godfather’s Pizza that became the fastest growing pizza chain in America. He’s been a successful innovator, franchisor and franchisee. He’s opened thousands of restaurants across the country. He’s a millionaire many times over. He’s far from done, too, as he’s about to replicate his latest concept, the popular Pitch Coal-Fire Pizzeria in Dundee (which, by the way, serves much more than just really good pizza). Always hungry for “the next thing,” you can bet Pitch won’t be his last hurrah either. >>

may/june  •  2012  

33


cover feature << Part of his wheeler-dealer’s genius is selling others on his ideas. “You’re only as good as the product you’re selling, and that could be yourself, too. You’ve got to be confident in yourself and then you have to share that confidence and knowledge base with others,” he says. “I take it as a compliment when someone says, ‘You’re a great salesman, you’re a good pitchman.’” His entrepreneurial bent showed early growing up in Clinton, Iowa. He liked earning his own money delivering papers, stenciling addresses on curbs, and flipping burgers. While attending Northern Iowa University in Cedar Falls, he became a top door-todoor salesman of cookware. Before starting Godfather’s, he leased commercial real estate. Appearing fit, energetic, and jaunty in an all-black ensemble, and looking several years younger than his age (66), he’s still the driven dynamo who hit the ground running in his late 20s to make himself an overnight player in the fast-food industry. Just as he still retains his knack for recognizing opportunities, he still possesses the initiative for seizing the day and staying out front of the competition. “My idea of an entrepreneur is having the ability to see things possibly other people don’t see. Having an eye for opportunity I think is key to my success. I don’t know that you train for it or study for it. Either you have it or you don’t have it. You can see a location, you can see the potential for a business in there, you can see potential in people and bring the best out in them or make them better than they are. “That’s what makes someone successful—the ability to perceive and receive what people want.” Identifying a good idea is one thing. Making it profitable is another. “Recognizing and then doing something with it,” he says, “is a trait you gotta have.” Being a successful entrepreneur, he says, means taking calculated risks. “It’s making a commitment and pulling the trigger on an idea or a concept or any opportunity that is there. I can identify it as one word, and that’s timing.” It’s knowing when to get in and when to get out. “With businesses, exit strategies are always important,” says Theisen, who sold Godfather’s in 1983 for hundreds of millions of dollars and saw it enjoy continued success. “Anybody can find the front door but once you go in, what’s your exit strategy? What is 34 

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the lifespan of a concept, of an investment? Things come in and go out. How long is this going to be good? “And when you go onto another business, you have to leave some meat on the bone for the next operator. There has to be some future for it.” If not for Godfather’s, would he have still made a killing in some other business? “It just happened that way,” he says. “I don’t know if it would have happened if I was in the car business or if I sold life insurance. I was confident, but I wasn’t to the point of being blind to the fact things don’t always work.” This self-described “food maven” would likely have found a niche in some food business segment. He gets so much satisfaction watching people enjoy themselves dining and drinking, a career in any other field wouldn’t have been as fulfilling. Then there’s the gratification of conceiving winning venues. “The toughest job of what I do is to try to figure out what everybody’s going to like. Ultimately, I’ve got to figure out what tastes good to people, where they like to go, where they like to park, how long they want to stay, what they want to happen while they’re there. It takes time to do it. You just don’t wake up one morning and go, ‘I’ve got it all figured out.’ There’s a process and there’s a lot that goes into that.” Before opening Pitch, he did his due diligence. “I wanted to go into a neighborhood, I wanted trees, I wanted people walking dogs, I wanted slow-moving traffic, I wanted soul, nurturing families, a university, light retail. That’s the ingredient for the location. The ingredient for the food is separate. First, I had to figure out where I was going to do what I was going to do. “I spent a lot of time looking around. Of course, I wanted to do it in Omaha. There’s such a thing as a home-court advantage when you’re first starting, and my knowledge base was the best here because I’ve been here the longest. So I ended up in the Dundee area. I sat across the street on this bench by myself for several afternoons with a pad of paper and a cell phone. After several days and discussion with some others, I decided that was where I was going to do it.” Pitch is Theisen’s most refined dining model yet. He says it’s intended to be the kind of “special place”—from décor to food to vibe—“you discover when you’re out of town and say, ‘I wish we had one of those >> www.ReadOnlineNow.com

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cover feature

<< here.’ That’s what I’ve built. I wanted to give it a pedigree. I think it’s so much different than a lot of things I’ve done, but it’s also an accumulation of a lot of things I’ve done. It’s on the progressive side. The foods are more broad-based. It’s current; it’s going after a lot of different demographics.” If his instincts are right, then Pitch will soon be a household name all over. “We don’t want it to be one and done. It’s got a future life in other locations out of the city,” says Theisen, who adds he has lined up people “very much interested in taking this brand and developing it. My plan is by year’s 36 

  may/june  •  2012

end to open company-owned restaurants in six other cities throughout the Midwest and then simultaneously open it up to franchising joint ventures.” Theisen’s been down this road before. He conceived Godfather’s while working for Omaha developer Tom Fellman, who had a planned unit development in a southwest suburb. Theisen leased all the available commercial space save a 5,000-square-foot bay he saw opportunity in. Apartments with single adults and young families surrounded the heavily trafficked spot. In 1973, with help from an uncle and a Small Business Association bank loan, he opened the combined Wild Willy’s beer garden and Godfather’s Pizza, brazenly capitalizing on the popular movie,The Godfather. Wild Willy’s faded away but Godfather’s took off. Within a year, Theisen began franchising, first in Columbus, Neb., then expanding across the state, the Midwest, and nationwide. “It seems like the success kind of fed itself,” he says. “We hit the ground running with these things. There were many people at our doors wanting franchises. We built by the model, and we managed by the model, and we kept it very simple because we were opening many locations simultaneously.” www.OmahaPublications.com


Thank You for Voting us #1 Six Years in a Row! At its peak, Godfather’s had nearly 1,000 locations in 40-plus states. He revolutionized the industry by using conveyor ovens and introducing free, refillable Coke containers. After selling Godfather’s, he took time off to focus on himself. He worked his magic again buying and selling GB Foods (Green Burrito). He became Famous Dave’s first pure franchisee, winning operator awards and guiding it in new directions. Then he developed Pitch. Through it all, he’s gained local icon status as one of Omaha’s favorite self-made success stories, yet he’s a Chicagoan by birth and was raised in Iowa. He only ended up here when his Ford Falcon broke down on his way to California in 1969. Omaha long ago became home. His deep affection for where his success began is expressed in many ways. He’s served on the Omaha Airport Authority and Creighton University boards. Mayor Jim Suttle recently appointed him to the Metropolitan Entertainment and Convention Authority (MECA) board. Theisen has helped make the fortunes of Nebraskans who’ve become owner-operators of his ventures. He also encourages emerging entrepreneurs who seek his advice. “I’m so blessed. I’m really at peace with what I’m doing, giving back, the things I’m involved in, the people that come to me for assistance or questions or what-ifs. I just think where I am and what I’m doing gives me great pleasure. Of course, I like my cars and certain other items. Those are my hobbies. I like working out. I try to go to the gym regularly to keep my body in pace with my mind because, sometimes, my mind runs a little quicker than my body can run at my age. “I don’t deny I’m getting a little bit older, but there’s never a bad time for a good idea, and that’s what I’m striving to do with Pitch.” The man who built a 20,000-square-foot Regency mansion has moved beyond conspicuous consumption. He doesn’t need to prove anything to anybody. “I think I’ve evolved, not only as a businessperson but as a person. You change as you grow older, at least I do. Things may have been important to me early in life, [but] now it’s not about having things—it’s about giving back, it’s about my community and what I can impact in a positive way.” For Theisen, what’s most important also includes spending quality time with family. “I’ve just been very fortunate. My dad said >> www.ReadOnlineNow.com

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<< the harder you work, the luckier you’ll get, and maybe those are hand in hand. I’m not so sure that if I’d gone to California that would have been a smart move. Maybe I was fortunate my car broke down and I was forced to stay here. Omaha is the key to what I’ve been, what I’ve done.” Though he’s hands-on and nothing escapes his scrutiny (quite often you’ll find him at Pitch jumping from table to table, making sure customers’ experiences and meals are up to par and visiting with guests), he’s more the big picture-strategy guy today with his business pursuits. “I make sure the day-to-day stuff is done, don’t get me wrong, but I don’t do it myself. I’ve got to stay a little ahead of that. I can’t personally worry about a burned-out light bulb. That gets me off-track. Don’t you think I don’t look at those light bulbs, and don’t you think I don’t go in our bathrooms, like I’ve done for years. They’ve got to be right, the kitchens have to be clean, everything’s got to be in order.” It’s not like he has some Midas touch either. It’s more that he pays attention to details and doggedly stays after it. “I’ve struggled like everybody else. I tried some things that didn’t work. But I always had a couple things going. I didn’t bank on one thing. I hate losing more than I like winning. I just don’t like to lose, and I don’t give up. I’m not known to throw in the towel too often or too quick.” He admits he can reach too far too fast. Then again, that’s his nature as a risk-taker. He likes the action. He also has the power of his convictions. “People around me make suggestions, and then I have to make decisions. It’s a big responsibility, and it all comes down to being able and willing with good information to make that decision, whatever it may be, and so I try to attract the best people possible.” Never one to rest on his laurels, he’s determined to make Pitch his next legacy. Beside, he couldn’t slow down if he wanted. He’s tried retiring and it didn’t take. “I think that’s possibly the true definition of an entrepreneur—they really can’t stop. They continue to try to think ahead. Yeah, you’ve got to have that fire in your belly, and you either have it or you don’t, and I have it. I’ve always got something cooking.” Read more of Leo Adam Biga’s work at leoadambiga.wordpress.com. www.OmahaPublications.com


Omaha Faces Story by Pamela S. Thompson • Photos by minorwhitestudios.com

G

lass display cases holding treasures from the 19th,

20th, and 21st centuries from Armenia, North Africa, and Turkey fill the front room on busy Maple Street. Gorgeous Turkish rugs decorate the wooden floor and tastefully peek out from under the furniture. Bright, original paintings by local artists hang on the walls in the adjacent gallery area. All the while, Turkish coffee brews on the burner in the back workshop. Welcome to Silver of Oz, a handcrafted silver jewelry shop owned and operated by jewelry designer Levent Oz. (At the time of this interview, the store was located in Benson. It has since relocated to Montclair on Center in West Omaha). Oz’s personal story is dramatic and intricate, much like the antique silver cigarette cases, pill boxes, decorative rings, and dangling necklaces and earrings on display. Oz, who was born in Istanbul, Turkey, and lived in Vienna, Austria, before moving to the United States in 1998, has been influenced by a combination of Ottoman court jewelry and European modern style. The son of a Turkish museum supervisor, who cared for the royal jewelry collection in the Topkapi Palace Museum, Oz had the chance to study the impressive court jewelry collection not accessible to most visitors. His awareness of and contact with classic silver pieces—such as Irish and Spanish swords designed with Nioello silver patterning and with Armenian black metal (which is tricky to work with and can shatter easily)—helped influence Oz’s silver-crafting style, fusing old and new, east and west. Oz’s own jewelry designs play with the surface of the metal. He creates unique pieces www.ReadOnlineNow.com

Silver of Oz

Levent Oz’s own silver-crafting style fuses old and new, east and west which embrace precious and semi-precious stones. His creations are made in a rectangular workshop at the back of the Maple Street store where he also teaches silversmith classes. From a small burner in the studio space, Oz stirs the dark, thick Turkish coffee, Nuri Toplar; and just when the bubbles pop, he pours the sugary mixture into two demitasse cups with bright Turkish designs and tiny spoons. After one sip, Oz excuses himself during a recent Saturday to greet customers Beth and Leon Wassenaar from Orange City, Iowa, who drove into Benson specifically to meet him. “Our friend owns this building, and we really like the wedding rings he made for them,” explains Beth. An hour later, the Wassenaars left Silver of Oz with big smiles after buying a lovely pair of silver tassel earrings and a stunning silver and coral necklace Beth promptly wore out the door. >> may/june  •  2012  

39


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on Celebrity Constellation — England, Spain and France << “The main point,” Oz said, smiling, “is not really selling. I love to interact with my customers.” Not only does Oz enjoy talking with and getting to know his customers, he also likes to share a specialty from his homeland—coffee. With his mother still in Istanbul and a sister in London, Oz tries to visit Europe and the Middle East, but his teaching and designing schedule is hectic. Doug Kuony took Oz’s beginner’s silversmith class a year ago when he found he had extra time on his hands after his father’s death. Oz teaches three levels of classes, two hours a week each in four-week sessions. Kuony, who lives close to the shop in Benson, said his experience with Oz “has been great.” He learned how to use the jeweler’s saw and the fusing torch, and now Kuony routinely makes his own silver designs. For Oz, the journey to owning his own business has been a long one. While in college in Turkey studying English Literature, Oz worked at an antique store where he was introduced to the European art. After immigrating to Vienna in 1992, he learned how to produce the jewelry he designed since he no longer had the support of the workshops that finished his pieces. In 1998, he decided to move to the United States and become a citizen. After landing in New Orleans where he worked as a waiter, Oz and his wife, Yeshim, a child, adolescent, and family therapist, were on their way to the west coast when they “got stuck in Omaha.” Oz ran a silver jewelry kiosk in the Oak View Mall for three months until he closed that operation. Instead, he went to work at First Data in 2001. Oz ran a machine that inserted credit card statements into envelopes. He stayed in that position for 10 years, all the while knowing in his heart that he was an artist. He finally got up the courage in 2008 to open his tiny shop in Benson. The following year, he moved Silver of Oz one block west into a much bigger space, adding a workshop and small art gallery. This April, Oz relocated his store once again to Montclair Shopping Center at 13013 West Center Road under the clock tower.  Perhaps the framed dollar bill he keeps superstitiously in an office drawer, signifying the first dollar he made in America, has brought him good fortune after all.  40 

  may/june  •  2012

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May/June 2012 VOLUME 2 • ISSUE 3

E d i t o r ia l omaha publications editor

linda persigehl omaha home contributing editor

stacey penrod city editor

sandy lemke assistant editor

bailey hemphill editorial intern

(#21)

k.j. mckercher art director

john gawley graphic designer

katie anderson production artist

mike bruening intern graphic designer

scott mcintyre p r i n c i pa l p h o t o g r a p h y

minorwhite studios, inc. scott drickey

• bill sitzmann

contributing photographer

jess ewald john gawley editorial advisors

rick carey

• david scott

contributing writers

mike blackmon jenna gabrial gallagher elena kerwin adrianne levitt carol crissey nigrelli tom sutko david williams

Omaha Home Magazine appears as its own magazine and as a section within Omaha Magazine. To view the full version of Omaha Magazine, or to subscribe, go to www. readonlinenow.com.

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  may/june  •  2012

www.OmahaPublications.com


soak you’ve it up earned it

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may/june  •  2012  

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Thanks for voting us a “Best of Omaha” May/June 2012 VOLUME 2 • ISSUE 3

A cco u n t s & O pe r at ions publisher

todd lemke account executive

&

publisher’s assistant

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gwen lemke omaha home senior account executive

stacey penrod account executive

paige edwards bulk subscription manager

sandy besch accounting

jim heitz distribution manager

mike brewer

SPECIAL THANKS Omaha Magazine & Omaha Home would like to thank

aaron carlson allens home early to bed Comments? Send your letter to the editor to: letters@omahapublications.com

402.331.4062 • 10811 Harrison St., Omaha, NE • www.mckeans.com flooring, cabinets, countertops, ceramic tile, window treatments, plumbing fixtures, design services & more! H6 

  may/june  •  2012

All versions of Omaha Magazine are published bimonthly by Omaha Magazine, LTD, P.O. Box 461208, Omaha NE 680461208. Telephone: (402) 884-2000; fax (402) 884-2001. Subscription rates: $19.95 for 6 issues (one year), $24.95 for 12 issues (two years). No whole or part of the contents herein may be reproduced without prior written permission of Omaha Magazine, excepting individually copyrighted articles and photographs. Unsolicited manuscripts are accepted, however no responsibility will be assumed for such solicitations. Best of Omaha®™ is a registered tradename of Omaha Magazine.

Owned and managed by Omaha Magazine, LTD

www.OmahaPublications.com


www.ReadOnlineNow.com

may/june  •  2012  

H7


Omaha Home: from the editor

A Letter from the Editor

Something Old, Something New One-of-a-Kind Accessories and Furniture You Can Call Your Own.

2806 S. 110TH COURT • ROCKBROOK VILLAGE 402.502.3736

Rachel Skradski, CBS Home Realtor, after placement of cosmetic veneers.

O

ne of the greatest loves of

my life was our family cabin at Lake of the Ozarks. When I was in grade school and first visited the cabin, it belonged to my parents’ friends. It was very dated with red shag carpet, red and black foil wallpaper going up the steps, handmade shades made out of red burlap, God’s Eyes made out of popsicle sticks and yarn hanging from the kitchen chandelier, and a red retro fireplace. It was one of the coziest places I had ever been. I’m sure most of it had to do with the warm-hearted homeowners who became very dear friends—almost like grandparents. When my parents later purchased the cabin, the first thing my mom wanted to understandably do was make some updates. There had to be compromise! There were so many family memories associated with the years spent at the cabin. Could we keep the red carpet? Could we keep the foil wallpaper? Could we keep it all? Well, we did get rid of the foil wallpaper, but my mom compromised, and we removed the old, long, red shag carpet for a shorter shag version...in red. I’m sure that carpet is now gone and many other changes have been made to that cabin since it was sold, but funny thing is...if I lived there again I would put the red shag carpet back! It’s all about the memories. A true testament to the phrase “Home is where the heart is.” On this issue’s cover is Lee and Debbie Stuart’s home on Big Sandy Lake with a luxurious “Hollywood Glam” interior designed by Aaron Carlson (pg. H22). We’re also happy to feature winners of the Watkins Ultimate Backyard Challenge, featuring the Pitz Residence designed by Foutch Landscaping Enterprises and the Walker Residence designed by KM Landscaping (pg. H32). Inside, you’ll also find a new department called “DIY,” where we spotlight one reader’s unique home do-it-yourself projects for her master bedroom. (You can submit your DIY projects to stacey.penrod@omahapublications.com for consideration in the magazine). Warm days are ahead, so mix up a Blueberry-Lemonade Cocktail (pg. H31), grab a seat on your patio, and have a nice read with Omaha Home! Sincerely,

Photo by Kim Roudabush, Kim Photography.

12123 Pacific St. • 334-4422 www.classicdentistry.com Extraordinary Care... Exceptional Results! H8 

  may/june  •  2012

Stacey Penrod Account Executive & Contributing Editor, Omaha Home Magazine stacey.penrod@omahapublications.com www.OmahaPublications.com


We’re top 20. But you’re still #1. We may have been named one of the best banks in America by Forbes, but we haven’t forgotten how we got there — by dedicating ourselves to our customers and the communities they live in. And at First National Bank, that level of commitment extends to every department and every financial solution we offer. So when you’re ready for one of the best banking experiences in America, stop into one of our convenient branches or visit us online at firstnational.com. 36 area locations | 402.346.3626 | Member FDIC

CHeCkINg | SAvINgS | MOrTgAge | CreDIT CArDS SMALL BuSINeSS | WeALTH MANAgeMeNT | COrPOrATe BANkINg www.ReadOnlineNow.com

may/june  •  2012  

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Omaha Home: contents departments

features

H12 Remodeler Profile: Tangerine Designs

FURNITURE •ART ARTIFACTS • POTTERY scottsdale & omaha

H14 New on the Block: Parmida Home Concepts and The Posh Peacock Consignment Gallery

LEE Industries Custom Upholstered Furniture Dealer

Visit Our Online Store! The Shops of Legacy 168th & West Center Road 402.932.5999 www.pearsonandcompany.com www.pearsonandcompany.blogspot.com

H18

H16

H21

H36 Neighborhood Profile:

“Band of Brothers”: Curt Hofer Construction

Designer Profile: Tim Bell, JaDecor Home DIY: Sandy Besch’s Mantel and Mirror

Thanks for Voting for Us Omaha!

Interior Design Accent Decor & Floral Design

Regency

FREE In-Home Consultation

H44 Transformations: Bringing the WOW Factor

H22

At Home: Lakeside Luxury

H48

Hot Products: Gardening Gear

columns

H31 Entertaining: Debbie Stuart’s BlueberryLemonade Cocktail

H35 Landscaping: Just Add Water

84th and 1st St, Downtown Papillion 402-331-9136 H10 

  may/june  •  2012

H32

Landscape Feature: Watkins Ultimate Backyard Challenge

H42 Maintenance:

H43 Real Estate:

Pest Control is a Process

Home Buying is the Most Fun We Can Have!

www.OmahaPublications.com


Locally Grown, Zone Hardy Plant Material

Thank You Omaha!

Request Heritage products from your landscape professional. • Visit our website for a list of recommended landscape •

contractors. www.heritagenursery.com

Open to the Public on Saturdays.

21330 Elkhorn Drive, Elkhorn, NE 68022 | 402-289-1616

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may/june  •  2012  

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Omaha Home: remodeler profile Story by Linda Persigehl • Photos by minorwhitestudios.com & Provided by Tangerine Designs

Q&A: Tangerine Designs

T

Tiffany & Andy Williams

iffany & Andy Williams are co-owners of Tangerine Designs, a full-service

design/build remodeling company in Omaha they founded two years ago this May. We visited with Tiffany to learn more about husband-wife team and their business, the current remodeling market and trends, and their own home.

Q: Tell us a bit about Tangerine Designs. Does your firm specialize in particular types of construction?

A: Tangerine Designs specializes in kitchens and bathrooms, but we also do family rooms, entertainment centers, basements, and laundry rooms. We have a showroom located in historic Downtown Dundee. We’re in the middle of remodeling the showroom to display a full, working kitchen, bathroom vignettes, butler pantry, and a wet bar. We feature Wood-Mode cabinetry. The price range of our jobs varies. Bathrooms usually start around $20,000 and go up from there. Kitchens can range anywhere from $15,000 to the moon. For kitchens, we advise our clients to spend 10 to 25 percent the value of their home on the kitchen remodel. If they are not staying in the home more than five years, only spend 10 percent; otherwise 20 to 25 percent, which they can recoup in more than five years. H12 

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Q: Tell us a little personal history about you and your family? Are you native Omahans?

A: Andy and I are both from a small town in the middle of Nebraska, Gibbon. We are high school sweethearts. We went to college together, then moved to Chicago. We moved to Omaha about eight years ago. We figured Omaha was close enough to our family! We have a little boy, Cal, who will be 3 years in May, and are expecting another addition in July! We really enjoy living in Omaha. We spend a lot of time in our garden. This year we are looking forward to installing two rain barrels to collect water for our garden. Andy loves to golf and is looking forward to teaching Cal this summer! Q: Tell us how the two of you got started in this business? What skills Do each of you bring to the table?

www.OmahaPublications.com


A: I went to the University of Nebraska at Kearney where I studied interior design with an emphasis in kitchens and baths. Andy also went to UNK and earned a degree in telecommunications. After college, I took a job with a firm in Chicago where I worked under one of the best kitchen and bath designers in the country, Jeff Cannata. At that time, telecom was really suffering, so Andy started working for the same company as me and eventually worked his way up to lead installer. Andy and I have been working together ever since. Today, I work in the showroom as the lead designer, specking product, selling, and of course, designing. Andy works as our general contractor and specializes in the finish carpentry. Working together as a team is terrific.

Celebrating over 25 years of Excellence Unique • Elegant • Handcrafted • Exquisite • Quality

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Creating Beautiful Interiors that Inspire and Refresh Thank you for voting us Best Interior Design Firm!

Q: How do you see the remodeling market looking right now? What are some trends you’re seeing?

A: The remodeling market looks pretty good. We have stayed pretty steady, but are expecting 2013 to be a big year. We have done a lot of bathrooms in the past year. Kitchens are still pretty steady, but people are a little tighter with their money than in years past. As for trends, we’re seeing a lot of clean, basic door styles and white in cabinets, countertops, tile, etc...not a lot of heavy detail like we used to do five to 10 years ago. We’re also seeing a lot of grey accents. People really want to simplify their lives. We are all very busy, so whatever makes things more convenient is what we want!

Mon-Fri 9-6, and Sat 10-2 12123 Emmet Street • 402-498-8777 www.DesignersOmaha.com

Q: What’s been one of your favorite projects or experiences with a customer/on the job?

We have one client in particular that we have remodeled just about every room in their home. We did the kitchen, three bathrooms, laundry room, family room, den, dining room, and the garage. Yes, the garage! We told them that when they sell, we might as well buy it because we have redone the entire home! Q: Tell us about your own home. Plans for your own home remodeling jobs?

We live just north of Dundee in the Metcalf Park neighborhood and absolutely love it. Our home is a classic brick one-and-a-half story Tudor. It was built in 1935 and we enjoying bringing her back to her original beauty. Our decorating style is mostly traditional with a little eclectic flair. For more information or to view project photos, visit www.tangerinedesigns.net. www.ReadOnlineNow.com

may/june  •  2012  

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Omaha Home: new on the block Story by Bailey Hemphill & K.J. McKercher • Photos by minorwhitestudios.com Pauline Uhing, at right, with sales associate Kelly Wadley

New on the Block

Parmida Home Concepts • The Posh Peacock Consignment Gallery

Parmida Home Concepts 200 S. 31st Ave, Ste 4107 Midtown Crossing

A

fter a successful grand opening in March, Parmida Home Concepts

is making itself at home in Midtown Crossing. “[Midtown Crossing] is a unique, upscale center,” says Parmida Director of Marketing, Siotha Vest. “We thought it would be one of the better fits for us to enter into the Omaha market for expansion.” This is Parmida’s first retail store in Nebraska and 12th store throughout the country. As the company celebrates the new Omaha location, they also celebrate the union of local consumers, chambers, and businesses to bring new concepts into Omaha. “One of the things we really concentrate on is per capita and local growth. Omaha has the lowest unemployment rate in the country, so it was definitely on our radar,” says Kevin Adib, Director of Sales. Parmida is a retail leader in affordable home luxuries, gifts, and designer furniture and décor. The store also offers a great mix of products selected solely to complement social activities in the home. “We are about enjoying your home and what you do in it,” says Vest. The store showcases distinctive home décor, wine and cheese accessories, imported gourmet coffee and tea, bath and body collections, kitchen accessories, and candles, as well as many more H14 

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timeless, high-quality gifts at value pricing. The unique merchandise gives the customer many options to complete the vision of their living, dining, and outdoor spaces. Customers will be delighted when they arrive in the showroom with picture-perfect vignettes of furniture, décor, fountains, and exquisite tabletops. Parmida Home offers a variety of furnishings for every taste, whether it’s an intimate setting or a formal gathering at home, a beach house, or a holiday event. Adib believes Parmida fits well into the Midtown Crossing lifestyle and market. “People can walk around, do their shopping, go out for dinner…it’s a very active community.” For more information, visit www.parmidahome.com. www.OmahaPublications.com


Thank You Omaha for voting us your #1 home accessories store.

402-778-0650 12965 W. Center Road (Montclair Shopping Center)

The Posh Peacock Consignment Gallery 12100 West Center Road Bel Air Plaza

Call us before noon, we’ll be there the same day.

T

his is not the first time Pauline Uhing has owned a store called the Posh Peacock. The first version, a La Vista-based retail store, was a victim of the economy, but Uhing refused to give up. She opened the Posh Peacock Consignment Gallery in Bel Air Plaza after seeing several successful consignment stores in other states. “That kind of sparked my interest,” she says. “I thought it was a good idea.” Uhing, a real estate and home décor veteran, adds that consignment just makes better economic sense. The consignment gallery lets people buy high-quality furniture that won’t hit the pocketbook quite as hard while also offering a way for people in transition to divest themselves of unnecessary furniture. Her success so far has shown just how good her sense is, too. According to Uhing, her biggest challenge is getting enough inventory to fill up her 4,000 sq.ft. showroom. In addition, Uhing offers several secondary consulting services, ranging from selecting paint and materials to interior design and spatial planning to life staging through feng shui, which Uhing describes as applying the psychology of design. “I’m very down to earth, though,” she says. “I just enjoy working with people.” From homeowners who want to change their entire house to those who just want to jazz up a room for spring, the Posh Peacock has what you need.

THANK YOU FOR VOTING US THE BEST IN OMAHA.

397.8100

RESIDENTIAL & COMMERCIAL HEATING, AIR CONDITIONING & PLUMBING

For more information, visit www.homeandlifestaging.com or call 402-933-9666. www.ReadOnlineNow.com

may/june  •  2012  

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Omaha Home: design profile Story by Linda Persigehl • Photos by minorwhitestudios.com & Provided by JaDecor

Q&A: JaDecor

T

Tim Bell

im Bell is a distributor and installer of JaDecor natural cotton wallcoverings. The

innovative products offer a high-end, custom look to any home décor. We asked Bell to share how he got into interior design, what make JaDecor products so unique, and what inspires his designs. Q: Give us a little personal history about you and your family.

A: I was born and raised in Omaha and went to Holy Name High School, graduating in 1967. I attended both Creighton and UNO before enlisting in the Air Force. I spent four years in Wichita, Kan., working in accounting and finance for the Air Force. I remained in Wichita for two years after I was discharged and worked at Cessna Aircraft. I am married and my wife, Paula, and I have two daughters and eight grandchildren. We have a large extended Irish Catholic family that now covers six generations and includes 1,300 cousins. There were over 600 attendees at our last reunion. We live in Springfield, Neb. H16 

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My hobbies include boating, beekeeping and gardening. Q: How did you first become interested in creative home design work?

A: One of my first inspirations in design was Frank Lloyd Wright. While I was in the Air Force, there was a Wright home in the neighborhood, and I would find myself stopping in front of the house to admire the beautiful lines. My wife and I have visited Falling Water and Taliesin West, two of Wright’s more famous creations. I have personally worked with and am continually inspired by many talented designers in Omaha, Kansas City, and Denver. www.OmahaPublications.com


Millard Lumber

Best Building Supply Stor e

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WIN NER ’

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Q: How would you describe JaDecor? What makes the product so unique and appealing to today’s homeowner?

E ’S IN

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Thanks for voting us Best Building Supply Store!

MAGA HA Z A

NN

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A: JaDecor natural cotton plaster is a seamless cotton texture that is customized in both color and components such as mica that is troweled on the wall. Cotton is the primary ingredient, which makes the product unique and environmentally friendly. JaDecor creates warm, quiet, and cozy spaces that are beautiful. The acoustically quiet and visually warm feel of this finish create a true value for our customers. Q: How and why did you become a distributor for JaDecor? Tell us about a few of your projects.

A: I was introduced to JaDecor in 1992 and used the product at the Street of Dreams that year. I discovered JaDecor stands alone in its combination of form and function that creates a true value for our clients. JaDecor has also been certified as a Green product since 1984 and has been used in projects that have received LEED Platinum ratings both here in Omaha and in Calif. There is no other finish that combines all of these values in one product. Our company installs JaDecor in both residential and commercial settings. We recently created a new exclusive décor that was used in Snoop Dogg’s recording studio in Calif. Locally, I’ve done work for a number of businesses, including: Brix at Village Pointe; Creative Hair Design, 120 & Center; Omaha’s Hair Choice, 120 & I St; and Azteca Mexican Restaurant, 144 & I-80. Q: Where do you find inspiration for your design work?

A: As the national distributor, we are continually exposed to new ideas and designs that are introduced by our installers, and the designers and architects that we have the privilege to work with on their projects. We look at each job as an inspiration to fit the client’s vision with the beauty and utility that JaDecor brings to a house and/or business. In my own home, I’ve used JaDecor installation throughout, having been inspired by the colors of nature in Sedona, Ariz. To learn more about JaDecor, visit their website, www.jadecor.com or call Tim Bell for a consultation: 402-677-3642 www.ReadOnlineNow.com

We’re Not Just About Fences.

MAINTENANCE FREE WELDED ALUMINUM RAILING

Thanks for Voting Us Best Fence and Railing Company

15803 Pacific St. • Omaha, NE • 402-333-5722

www.sw-fence.com

may/june  •  2012  

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Omaha Home: builder feature Story by Carol Crissey Nigrelli • Photos by minorwhitestudios.com

(L-R) Marshall Wallman, Director of Design; Curt Hofer, CEO; Steve Huber, President; and Craig Linnenbrink, Vice President of Construction.

“Band of Brothers”

Curt Hofer Construction

C

urt Hofer raises his shoulders and gently shakes his head in wonder, a rare loss for words by the usually gregarious homebuilder. How did his journey from a one-man, door-to-door home remodeling service morph into one of Omaha’s premier high-end home construction companies that bears his name? “Honestly, that’s the mystery of the story to me,” said Curt. “It all happened so fast and that is something I will ask God when I get to heaven. It was nothing pre-meditated or prefabricated, just a coming together of a team.” The Curt Hofer Construction team starts with the founder himself.

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  may/june  •  2012

“I grew up on a ranch in Chester, Mont., the youngest of five kids,” said Curt. By all accounts he was a rascal. “My defining moment came from a high school shop teacher and coach who didn’t want me to become a jerk, so he worked with me on shop projects and changed the course of my life.” A pretty nurse also changed Curt’s life and the couple settled in Omaha after college. Linda Hofer’s $6,000 in savings started Curt on his fledgling remodeling business in the early 90’s. If Curt forms the foundation of the company, then his three closest associates represent the pillars that keep the structure strong: www.OmahaPublications.com


Live Outdoors Steve Huber, President and Head of Sales; Craig Linnenbrink, Vice President of Construction; and Marshall Wallman, Director of Design. The four core employees, all still married to their first loves, have worked together for so long—over 15 years now— that Curt can’t remember a time when he didn’t have his “Band of Brothers” at his side. Each took a leap of faith, albeit at different times, to join Curt and help him establish a hold in the 500k-and-up housing market, which Omaha’s corporate culture sustains. The comfort level among the four men and innate trust in each other stem from similarities in their backgrounds. All were born in small towns. Each had several siblings. Their fathers or grandfathers worked with their hands. All were drawn to design, drafting or building things at a very young age. “As long as I can remember, even in kindergarten, I always wanted to draw houses,” said Marshall, the company’s in-house designer who was born in Syracuse, Neb., and raised in La Vista. “My first job out of college was drawing up plans for houses for local builders. I met Curt through the plan service company where I started.” Curt calls Marshall, who has three sons, “the dreamer.” In his earliest days of building houses, Curt noticed Marshall’s designs and “loved his stuff.” “What I love about Marshall and our firm as a whole, we have no agenda other than what our clients want us to create. Marshall is a very humble guy, a good listener and he’s not fixated on a certain look. He’s highly creative and original while giving clients what they want,” said Curt. While Marshall designs a client’s hopes and dreams, Craig has to manage their expectations. “Craig can come across as stoic, real black and white because he cares about controlling costs and being a steward of their money, but the more clients get to know Craig, they more they like him and want to work with him,” said Curt, who calls Craig “the meat-and-potatoes guy.” Craig’s laid-back nature may stem from his place among eight brothers and sisters. As the third eldest growing up in West Point, Neb., Craig seemed to be his father’s first choice whenever it came to getting up early on a Saturday to fix up some of the rental properties his father owned in town. >> www.ReadOnlineNow.com

OutdOOr Kitchen & PatiO

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(402) 330-3400 • www.kbbriggs.com Thank you Omaha for voting us best Kitchen & Bath Plumbing Fixtures!

may/june  •  2012  

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feature

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  may/june  •  2012

<< “I’d ask him a lot of questions [about remodeling]. But I didn’t know if I wanted to do all this physical labor stuff all my life,” said Craig, who kept his own family at three kids. He earned an architectural drafting degree from Southeast Community College (Marshall’s alma mater) but his love of the outdoors lead him to become a job superintendent for a commercial contractor. Craig’s defining moment occurred when he got laid off during an economic downturn. Steve Huber came to Craig’s rescue, but not before Steve figured out his own path. “After I got my degree in construction management at Kearney in 1984, I came to Omaha and the housing market was down,” said Steve, who grew up in Norfolk, Neb., and got in trouble so much his parents didn’t believe he’d survive high school. “So I went to work at Millard Lumber as a salesperson. I was there 11 years. That’s how I met all the contractors.” Steve supplied lumber to Curt just as Curt was branching out from remodeling to constructing homes (by himself) and he wanted Steve to join him and grow the company, with the opportunity of ownership. That started a tug of war inside Steve. “I already had a good job. We had just had our third child. But I needed to either take the risk of becoming a small business owner or I felt I might end up selling lumber my whole career.” “I wouldn’t take no for an answer,” chuckled Curt, who calls Steve “the survivor,” not just in reference to his childhood, but to Steve’s survival of a serious health issue a few years back. “Steve was the first on board and then he recruited Craig because I didn’t know Craig. Craig’s job description was something like ‘you’ll do all the above,’” Curt cracked. Over 200 homes later, Curt Hofer Construction takes pride in its reputation as an honest, stable and ego-free company. With trademark humility, Curt, the father of four, gives a lot of credit to the field superintendents and “outstanding office support staff.” “I cannot adequately express how blessed we’ve been, after all the homes we have been entrusted to design and build and intertwining ourselves with one of the most personal sides of people’s lives, that we can now count these individuals and families as lifelong friends. What a privilege! It is almost unbelievable.” www.OmahaPublications.com


Omaha Home: d•i•y project Story by Bailey Hemphill • Photos by minorwhitestudios.com

L

Sandy Besch’s

d•i•y Mantel and Mirror project

“I never wanted my bedroom to look like a set.”

www.ReadOnlineNow.com

Sandy Besch

ooking for a unique, eye-

catching, yet inexpensive DIY project to add a little flair to your bedroom décor? Just ask Sandy Besch! “I never want my bedroom to look like a set,” she says. “I want different looks that coordinate. I like to mix old and new. I like out-of-the-ordinary design, not something you would walk into a store and see.” She created this look for her bedroom with a few inspirations. The headboard mantel idea came from her experience working at a retail store that sold fireplaces. “I was able to get old floor models when they would clear them out…I looked at them as a creative piece to put on the wall and decorate with candles and pictures.” Realizing that the mantel was the perfect width, Besch put it over her bed, making her own creative headboard, which she would easily be able to paint if she ever wanted to change up colors in the room. On the mantel, Besch layers different textures and designs but prefers each piece stand out on its own. After a friend introduced her to Pinterest, Besch found the idea for the shattered mirror piece. “I just loved it, and it was so different than anything I’ve seen in a long time. So I went home that night and broke a mirror.” Besch made the mirror piece by using several different sizes of broken mirror and gluing them together like a puzzle. “Make sure you use gloves and the correct glue for your projects,” she says. “I learned the hard way.” If you’re a crafty home DIYer and would like to share your projects and ideas, please email them to stacey.penrod@omahapublications.com may/june  •  2012  

H21


Omaha Home: at home Story by Jenna Gabrial Gallagher • Photos by minorwhitestudios.com • Interior Design by Aaron Carlson Home styled by Aaron Carlson, Elizabeth Bristol, and Lisa Collinsworth of Aaron Carlson Design Accessories Provided by Allens Home & Early to Bed

Lakeside Luxury

Nestled in the farmland between Omaha and Lincoln is a little piece of Malibu in the Midwest

“It all started with the chandelier.”

Debbie Stuart


Pictured left; Homeowner Debbie Stuart with interior designer Aaron Carlson

A built-in audio system keeps this home’s cool vibe going indoors and out, from sun up to sun down, all year long.

I

Washable slipcovers maintain an elegant look while keeping chairs stain-free when the little ones are around.

just have to tell you,

our lake house is a little fancy,” Ben, the owner’s 12-year-old son, warned a recent guest. “And it’s all because of my mom.” That wasn’t the original plan. The 3,000-square-foot modernist structure chillaxing in a gated community on Big Sandy Lake outside of Ashland started life as a casual waterfront cottage. But as the nearly five-year building process dragged on, introducing new complications every step of the way, owners Lee and Debbie Stuart realized that a little extra love was needed to make their getaway a wow. Or as Debbie puts it, “I just said to my husband, ‘We need Aaron.’” >> continued on page 26

may/june  •  2012  

H23


Omaha Home: at home The ‘Hollywood Glam’ style of the home’s interior design was inspired by this Schonbek chandelier.

Large windows span the entire length of the kitchen/dining/ lounge space, allowing homeowners to take full advantage of their beautiful lake view.

Fresh, seasonal flowers bring natural warmth inside on cooler, rainy summer days.

Homeowner Debbie Stuart loves making signature cocktails with a twist! Pictured here, her own take on the traditional Old Fashioned; find Debbie’s recipe for her blueberry-lemonade cocktail on page H31.

These ornate chairs bring the outdoors in with their treeinspired backs.

These spool vases provided by Allens Home bring an earthy touch to this custom vintage, mirrored-top dining table.


Custom-built cabinets with liftup frosted glass doors provide easy access to everyday dishes.

A chalkboard lists ingredients for the night’s dinner menu. The kitchen includes high-end, stainless steel microwave, gas range, and refrigerator.

Artichoke-inspired candle holders provide a touch of nature to the industrial kitchen. Provided by Early to Bed.

Modern, expandable bamboo drawer dividers keep utensils and drawers organized and tidy. Found at Bed, Bath & Beyond.

www.ReadOnlineNow.com

may/june  •  2012  

H25


Omaha Home: at home continued from page 23 << Aaron being Omaha-based designer Aaron Carlson, who had done the interiors of the Stuart’s primary residence in Lincoln and whom the owner’s son has come to refer to as his mother’s “soulmate.” “This house is totally different than their home in Lincoln,” Carlson says. “That house has lots of color. They wanted this one to be serene.” His solution was an all-white palate that mixes haute LA beach house with a few rustic touches to give the home its sense of place on the Plains. A mohair sofa faces twin stools made from polished tree trunks in the living room. A weathered lantern is perched on the kitchen’s iPod-white countertops. In the media room—which, at the top of the tower, is the highest point in the house—a painting of blues and greens plays off the view of the lake, whilst a hide-covered ottoman recalls the pastoral drive in from town. “The home is very Hollywood glam,” Carlson says. “But it’s also very livable and durable. The counters are Corian. The chairs at the dining table are damask designed by Nancy Corzine, but they’re slipcovers. >> continued on page 31

Natural art prints in neutral colors bring life to the space while tying in colors from the flooring while maintaining the home’s serene tone.

This ottoman used outside the back laundry room makes a perfect bench for switching shoes. These

classic

mid-century

Provided by Allens Home.

modern Mies van der Rohe’s optic-white Barcelona chairs are covered in leather, making cleaning a breeze.

H26 

  may/june  •  2012

www.OmahaPublications.com


This ornate mirror hangs in stark contrast to the clean, modern design of the glass-tile wall.

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Less is more with this simple, round sink and sleek, single-handle faucet in the half bath between the kitchen and laundry room.

The simple winding staircase covered in carpet leads from the kitchen up three stories to the tower loft; the perfect spot for a teen room with an Xbox.

www.ReadOnlineNow.com

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H27


The Mother of Pearl wall-covering by Maya Romanoff acts as an elegant counterpoint to the dark wood of the master bath vanity.

“His” and “Hers” sinks by Kohler achieve a streamlined look.

Floating counters help keep the room feeling light, airy and modern.


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The tiled master shower with multiple, adjustable shower heads offers a spa-like environment after a day at the beach.

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Burton Kilgore UNL Horticulture Alumni 402.926.9790

Jake Foutch UNL Horticulture Alumni 402.321.7996

This granite lamp brings a modern touch to this traditional master bedroom. Provided by Allens Home.

may/june  •  2012  

H29


Omaha Home: at home Colorful throws, pillows, and accessories brighten up the kids’ bunk-bed room. Provided by Allens Home.

The kids’ bath off the hallway features a trough-inspired sink, reminiscent of the farms on the drive to this summer retreat.

Pull-out trundles with these bunk-beds allow this room to sleep multiple friends for sleepovers (third bunk-bed not pictured).

More inspiration from the nature

The media room at the top of

surrounding this lake home, this

the tower sleeps two additional

bedding may be found at Early

guests, while housing fun for

to Bed.

rainy-day play.

H30 

  may/june  •  2012

www.OmahaPublications.com


Omaha Home: entertaining Recipe by Debbie Stuart • Photo by John Gawley

continued from page 26 << We had looked at Carrera marble for the floors but it’s a lake house. So we went with porcelain tile that looks like poured concrete.” Even the Mies van der Rohe’s optic-white Barcelona chairs squatting in the main seating area are covered in easy-to-clean leather. That’s not to say there aren’t some pretty major statement pieces. The inspiration for the entire design concept came from the enormous Schonbek crystal chandelier suspended over the dining table. “The whole house started with that light fixture,” Carlson laughs, with a conspiratorial glance at the owner. “It all started with the chandelier,” Debbie agrees. The two soulmates’ cat-who-ate-thecanary exchange recalls something the owner had confided earlier. “When Aaron and I get together, we can be a budgetary nightmare.” In the upstairs bath, a wall tiled in Mother of Pearl from Maya Romanoff bears this out. As does the champagne colored Barbara Barry desk in the master bedroom. But the laid-back vibe of the house returns in what the family affectionately calls the bunk room, where three sets of double-decker beds provide a summer crash pad for their two children (they also have a teenage daughter, Maddie) and their posse. “It’s 50 minutes, door-to-door, from our home. But our plan is to spend most of the summer here. We can sleep so many and our kids can invite all their friends.” For grown-up guests, Debbie mixes up a batch of whatever her signature cocktail of the moment is. Right now, it’s blueberry lemonade. “I basically just take my lemon drop recipe and switch out the citron vodka for blueberry vodka. Then I add fresh lime juice and muddle some mint. I always like to serve something that’s special and yummy.” In fact, Debbie’s so well-known for her bartending skills that her cocktail-making classes have become a top hit on the charity auction circuit. “You know, you go to a party and some people bring a dish. I bring a cocktail.” She looks out the wall of windows to the sun setting on the lake. “Of course, every day is kind of a party out here.” www.ReadOnlineNow.com

O

ur At Home subject Debbie Stuart (pg. H22) is known for

her love of entertaining and specifically, her signature cocktails. Below she shares her recipe for her current party favorite, ideal for summer get-togethers. Blueberry-Lemonade Cocktail

• • • • • •

2 ounces blueberry vodka 1 ounce fresh-squeezed lemon juice 1 tablespoon superfine sugar 1/4 lime wedge Fresh mint Fresh blueberries

1. 2. 3. 4.

Muddle fresh mint, lime wedge and sugar in a martini shaker. Add vodka, lemon juice and ice.  Shake vigorously. Strain into a martini glass or serve over ice. Garnish with fresh mint (or lemon) and blueberries. may/june  •  2012  

H31


Omaha Home: landscape feature Story by Linda Persigehlâ&#x20AC;˘ Photos Provided by Watkins Conrete Block Co.

Watkins Ultimate Backyard Challenge

Pitz Residence


“Good sense of entry for guests and the lighting which made the yard magical.”

Jake Foutch, Foutch Landscaping Enterprises

UBC Judges

F

or seven years running,

Watkins Concrete Block Co. of Omaha has sponsored the Watkins Ultimate Backyard Challenge. The annual contest allows some of the area’s best landscape design contractors to showcase their premier backyard projects in the past year in a competition for the coveted UBC best title. A panel of three, independent landscape architects (not associated with Watkins Concrete) judge the projects after visiting them in person—sometimes multiple times in daytime and nighttime—and viewing professionally staged and shot photographs of the projects. In 2010, Watkins began recognizing winners in two distinct categories: the Large Backyard category and the “Lite” category. The “Lite” category consists of smaller-scale projects that may be more realistic and attainable in today’s economy. In 2011, five Large Backyard projects and 12 Lite projects were entered into the UBC contest. “In previous years, we’ve usually had maybe 12 to 15 entries,” said Watkins’ sales associate, Laura Baumgart. “This year we had 17.” Baumgart said the growth in entries indicates growth in the landscape design business overall, and the growing popularity of the contest among contractors. While photos were staged and voting among judges took place last September, the 2011 UBC winners were not announced until March 14, 2012, at the annual Watkins Hardscape Contractor Seminar. In the Large Backyard category, Foutch Landscaping Enterprises was recognized for its project at the Pitz residence in the Barrington Park neighborhood, Omaha. In the Lite category, KM Lanscaping was recognized for its project at the Walker residence. Watkins Concrete Block’s Baumgart provided the following judges’ descriptions of the winning entries: may/june  •  2012  

H33


Omaha Home: landscape feature 2011 UBC Winner, Large Backyard Category Foutch Landscaping Enterprises, Jake Foutch Ken & Marian Pitz Residence

F

outch L andscaping Enterprises took full advantage of the natural contours of this backyard for a spectacular boulder-lined water feature. They also selected pavers, wall block and bold stone steps to blend with the natural palette of the boulders. The end result is a backyard that evokes the feel of a mountain retreat right in the heart of the city. The UBC judges praised this job for its “good sense of entry for guests and the lighting which made the yard magical.” The judges praised the creative and unique landscaping. And also noteworthy, the judges told u that the fire pit was well-lit and spaced properly for the safety of guests.

Jake Fouch is owner of Foutch Landscaping Enterprises, which he founded five years ago, after studying horticulture and earning a degree in landscape design from the University of Nebraska. Foutch said the majority of his work is backyard renovations, such as paver patios, small water features, plantings, etc. “I’d like to think I specialize in hardscapes and plant knowledge, knowing what goes where to get the full effect of the backyard,” he said. Foutch’s team spent approximately 1,600 man-hours and a total of eight weeks on construction of the Pitz’ $130,000 project, with the overall goal for the backyard to have different destinations to go to when the family had company over. The biggest challenge with the project was access to the yard, which was steeply sloped, Foutch said. Rain delays were also an issue. “I just want to thank (the Pitz’s) from the bottom of my heart for trusting me and allowing me to show my potential when it comes to landscaping,” he added. Foutch also thanks fellow landscapers Burton Kilgore of Nature’s Intent and Scott Carson of Carson Enterprises for being great mentors and friends in the business. This was the first time Foutch had entered the UBC contest. “I’m just a tiny company when compared to [businesses] I went up against…I was extremely excited when I found out we had won. Hopefully it will help my company reach the next level.” H34 

  may/june  •  2012

Pitz Residence at night

Walker Residence

Matt Keiser, KM Landscaping

K

2011 UBC Winner, Lite Category KM Landscaping, Matt Keiser Tom & Laura Walker Residence M Landscaping designed a backyard that invites you to take it outside

for dinner, for entertaining, or for a lazy day curled up with a good book. With innovative designs and enhancements that extend the outdoor season, backyards like this maximize outdoor living space and get the most out of entertaining under an open sky. This year’s UBC judges put this backyard at the top of their list “because all its features were proportionate to the size of the yard with wood details carried out through the project.” They liked how the grill was incorporated into the free standing wall and that there was an attractive entry from home to patio. www.OmahaPublications.com


Home: landscaping Story by Adrianne Leavitt, Carson Enterprise

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Just Add Water he sights and sounds of water

have been used therapeutically for centuries to give the mind and body a sense of peace and harmony. One of the hottest homeowner trends today is creating a relaxing outdoor oasis, complete with water features. The water captivation ranges from table-top fountains to custom ponds, waterfalls, decorative fountains, and boulder bubblers. Consider the following prior to your selection and size of a water feature: First, the scale of your water feature is extremely important and should coordinate with the size of your home and yard. If your water feature is too small or too large in comparison, it will seem out of place. Remember, there is always space and ways to incorporate water, whether you are starting with a blank slate or revitalizing an existing landscape. Second, assess whether the water feature will be used for quiet relaxation or entertainment. This may determine the placement. Would you like the water feature incorporated into a patio or deck, where both relaxation and entertainment play a daily card? Or, would you like the water feature to create a dramatic entrance to your home, making curb appeal the ultimate goal? Also, consider location carefully, if you want to enhance the indoor experience, with the sounds and scenic views of water filtering through an open door or window. Finally, once you’ve determined the best look and style of water feature for your yard, you must decide whether to install it yourself or contract a professional for the job. The type, size, location, and difficulty of the project should help you determine if a professional is necessary. Ultimately, the goal is to sit back and let the sounds of nature, complete with water, take over your body and mind. Enjoy your own oasis! For more information on water features and to view water feature photographs, visit our website at www.carsonenterprise.com may/june  •  2012  

H35


Omaha Home: neighborhood profile Story by David Williams â&#x20AC;˘ Photos by Jess Ewald - jessicaewald.com

Reinventing Regency As the prestigious Omaha community nears its second half-century, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s seeing a rebirth of sorts.


T

hey have for decades been some of Omaha’s most familiar

addresses, but certain plots of land in Regency are increasingly sprouting the most unfamiliar of sights. One of the city’s signature upscale neighborhoods has in recent years experienced a very special brand of building booms, one that has bulldozed multi-million-dollar homes to make way for a new generation of landmarks. Gone are the once iconic Witherspoon Mansion (later David Sokol and family) and Willy Theisen (later Terry Watanabe) homes, each a sprawling testament to the power of Omaha’s ever-resilient economy. >>

www.ReadOnlineNow.com

may/june  •  2012  

H37


Omaha Home: neighborhood profile << In their place are the ultra-modern, flat-roofed homes of, respectively, Jeff and Danielle Gordman of the retail enterprise of the same name, and Todd and Betiana Simon of the family behind the internationally acclaimed Omaha Steaks. “It’s really no surprise,” explained Ken Coats of CBS Home. “Regency will always be the first to go up and the last to go down in price, regardless of the real estate market because—and you must pardon the cliché here—the old adage about location, location, location has never been truer than it is with Regency.” Coats, who himself lived for over a decade in the development that first rose in the mid‘60s, estimates that he has sold over 150 homes in the neighborhood that includes almost 400 home, townhome and villa properties covered by three different neighborhood associations. Prices for homes range from around $250,000 up to stratospheric heights. The mystique of the near legendary community, Coats said, is borne of a unique and particularly winning formula. “Everyone used to think of Omaha as a 20-minute city,” he added, “that you could get anywhere in about 20 minutes. Those days may be gone, but Regency tops that by still delivering not just a 20-minute city but a 15-minute, inside-the-beltway urban island that is easily accessible to everything that the area has to offer.” The convenience factor is further multiplied when one runs down the list of that which is within a two-minute drive or, better yet, mere walking distance. The adjacent Regency Court, One Pacific Place, and Westroads Mall remain highend shopping and dining magnets while the Regency Lake and Tennis Club, whose amennities are automatically enjoyed by Regency families, are only a heartbeat away. The neighborhood has been leapfrogged by a never-ending succession of westward expansion, but much of the charm of Regency lies in its eclectic mix of architectural styles. Sometimes overly restrictive homeowner’s covenants in newer developments run the risk of rendering a monochromatic landscape where every house—even in the highest-end neighborhoods—has an ineffable sameness about it. >> H38 

  may/june  •  2012

The majority of homes populating Regency are sprawling traditional-style homes with brick facades, elaborate roof lines and immaculate landscaping. High-end shopping and Regency Park are just a quick jaunt away.

www.OmahaPublications.com


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Omaha Home: green design

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Before

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Top: Residents have easy access to the trail that runs through the neighborhood park. Above: One of the contemporary homes springing up in Regency in recent years.

<< Not so in Regency, especially with the clean lines and contemporary materials found in the zinc and cedar façade of the Simon home. Over at the Gordman place, slate-grey cement/ stucco mixes with a blend of equally stylish materials, all punctuated by the playfully off-kilter angles of the home’s dramatic entryway. Not surprisingly, there are those neighbors who don’t much care for contemporary architecture. “But that’s not the point,” insisted Vanita Lund who, for nine years, has lived around the corner from what is now the Gordman home. “All neighborhoods change. They evolve. Regardless of your feelings on contemporary architecture, these and other changes here help Regency remain strong with new people, new ideas and new contributions to the community.” Now about to enter it’s second half-century of representing the apex of luxury living, Regency continues to build on the very image that first led to its singular success. www.ReadOnlineNow.com

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H41


Home: maintenance Story by Tom Sutko, Owner/President Pest Solutions 365

Pest Control is a Process

S

pring is now in full bloom, and

we aren’t the only ones wanting to get out and enjoy the favorable weather! Pests that have been hibernating over the winter are showing up in and around homes. The majority of early hibernators emerging are the ants and the Asian beetle or Lady Bug. Your first course of action to prepare for these pests should be to take note of where they might come into your home so you can caulk these areas, preventing future infestation. To control pests that have already gained access to your home, you should first use a shop vac and remove as many pests as possible. For ants, gel baits with the active ingredient Thiamethoxam will work best to eliminate the colony. The bait should be applied in areas where you see ants trailing. They will typically be coming from cracks in concrete, water or electrical supply lines, and even under toilets where the stool meets the floor. Ants are social and will take the bait back to the colony, which may house thousands of ants and multiple queens. Elimination of the colony can be difficult and requires patience. Multiple applications are sometimes necessary. As for Lady Bugs and Asian beetles, a pesticide spray containing Cyfluthrin is best. This should be applied both inside and out at the site of infestation. Managing pests effectively starts with identifying structural, sanitation, and operational problems around your home. Traditional, non-chemical solutions such as traps, vacuums, and moisture control should be considered initially. When these solutions fail, it’s best to work with a licensed pest technician, who will treat the problem using pesticide products and application methods that minimize the environmental risks. For more information about Pest Solutions 365 and our pest management programs, feel free to contact us at 402.334.BUGS(2847) or visit our website, www.pestsolutions365.com. H42 

  may/june  •  2012

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hat a fun journey to

seek that right match to fit your needs, whether it be your first starter home of modest stature, or your last big McCastle for your burgeoning family. To help you make the journey the most fun, No. 1 on your list should be to find the right Realtor to work with. All Realtors are trained to know the markets and understand the technical issues. The one you want is the one that will care about YOUR needs and wants. A home purchase is a big event for anyone, whether it be your first move or your $6 million move…they are all emotional. In my case, I have had the fortune to work with multiple generations within several Omaha families, and am constantly referred! If you don’t have a “family Realtor,” check with your three most trusted friends about their experiences. Meet with at least a couple of Realtors, and trust your instincts. You need to find an agent you’re comfortable with and trust will work ‘with’ you, not just talk ‘at’ you! Tell your Realtor what your needs are, then what you want are. Your Realtor will spend their time sorting through the almost 5,000 available properties and find the top three to five homes to meet your needs and wants. Knowledge of the marketplace, knowledge of you—the buy skills in negotiating can make all the difference in a successful purchase! And what a reward at the end. Have fun!

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sultation to Comple

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H43


Omaha Home: transformations Story by Elena Kerwin, Allied Member ASID, Nebraska Furniture Mart â&#x20AC;˘ Photos by Barry Cohn

Bringing the WOW Factor


2

A

3 fter undergoing a complete remodeling of their first

floor done by DRD Home Services and Avant Architects, the homeowners were ready for the final stage of their project. They chose Elena Kerwin, interior designer with Nebraska Furniture Mart, to guide them through this process. Kerwin was impressed with the renovation, especially the architectural fixtures. The homeowners wanted their space to be comfortably livable yet extremely chic. Elena wanted to take it to the next level. www.ReadOnlineNow.com

1 - The Architectural Digest-published Designer Elena Kerwin poses with Jordan and Effie, who love the Elite leather sectional, with custom-made pillows by Century. Adding to the drama, a Century cocktail ottoman. 2 - A display cabinet is adorned with three-story columns grounded with a John-Richard tree sculpture, Global Views vase and silver-gold candle holders.

1

3 - Entryway main hallway displays a geometrical console from Century Furniture, tall gold lamp from Global Views, birds sculpture from John-Richard and original art from the client’s private collection.

may/june  •  2012  

H45


Omaha Home: transformations 4

5

4 - A custom display cabinet with columns and room divider with storage cabinet present a perfect showcase for the client’s personal momentos. 5 - The formal dining room décor is done in silver and gold tones. A dramatic statement is made with the accessories to balance the three-story-high ceilings. Family pictures taken by Charles and Laurie. 6 - The great room features a hidden media cabinet that can slide and cover the fireplace,

and a funky Century

Furniture ottoman with German ultrasuede. 7 - The kitchen has a perfect frame for the custom kitchen countertops. The swivel bar stools from the Omni Collection by Century are made with vintage leather, with a sable and espresso finish. 8 - The formal living room and sitting room make a statement with their contrasting materials and textures: cow hide, suede, wool, silk and faux crocodileembossed leather. Silver and gold

touches

were

with accessories.

H46 

  may/june  •  2012

added

8 www.OmahaPublications.com


6

7 Working closely with her clients, the color skin silver gold with dark brown for accents was decided upon. Kerwin used a contrast of textures and materials to achieve a refined classic but modern look. The two-story entry was breathtaking. Kerwin needed a spectacular piece to compliment but not compete with the space. She chose console table by Century that combine sculptural and geometrical lines. It was the perfect introductory piece for their formal living. The space was grounded with some pieces from Kelly Hoppen. Contemporary cowhide pillows and a faux crocodile embossed leather ottoman from Hancock & Moore added just enough contrast to make this a stunning room. Gold tone velvet upholstered chairs were added to the formal dining room. The kitchen was furnished with a modern classic table and chairs by Century. The chairs were upholstered in a contemporary pattern. To add a bit of fun, Kerwin selected barstools that were funky and unique but still practical for the kitchen. A comfortable leather sectional, leather recliner, and accent ottomans create an inviting space to relax and entertain in the great room. Finally the “WOW” factor was accomplished with artsy-look table lamps and big accessory pieces in gold silver tones. The result: a home with a perfect balance of classic elegance and comfortable living.

www.ReadOnlineNow.com

may/june  •  2012  

H47


Omaha Home: hot products Photos by John Gawley

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Growums Garden Kits are ideal for young green thumbs. Each themed kit includes four varieties of seeds and everything you need to grow veggies and herbs for a variety of dishes. Register at Growums.com and your young gardener can also watch Growum characters come to life in a series of animated videos that show them how to properly care for their plants. Growums Garden Kits are available in six varieties, including Taco, Pizza and Stir-fry, at Canoyer’s Nursery, 11240 S 66th St, Papillion, $9.99 ea. www.canoyergardencenter.com

Happy Frog Fruit & Flower Bags are 4-lb. bags of natural and organic fertilizers customized to suit the growing needs of a variety of plants. The Jump Start mix is ideal for seedlings and transplants; the Acid Loving Plants variety is best suited to azaleas, rhododendrons, hydrangeas, evergreens, and many fruits and vegetables; Rose Food suits rose bushes and shrubs; the Fruit and Flower variety is recommended for fruit and flower development; and the Bat Guano formula works well with most kinds of plants. Happy Frog bags, $10.75, available at Moore’s Landscaping & Nursery, 11999 Cryer Ave. www.mooresnursery.com

Avid gardeners or those with arthritis will appreciate the benefits of Radius’ ergonomically designed hand garden tools. Their natural radius grips maximize power and comfort while minimizing hand and wrist stress. Tools are made with ultra-light aluminum magnesium blades and have a non-glare satin finish. Radius Weeder and Radius Cultivator are available at Moore’s Landscaping & Nursery, 11999 Cryer Ave., $13.50 ea. www.mooresnursery.com H48 

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Back To The Roots Mushroom Garden lets you grow up to 1 ½ lbs. of tasty oyster mushrooms right out of the little brown box. Recycled coffee grounds inside act as soil; just place box indoors away from direct sunlight, open the front panel and cut a small ‘+’ in the soil bag, then mist twice a day. In approximately 10 days, harvest your mushrooms and enjoy! Then turn box around and repeat for a second harvest. Mushroom Garden available at Canoyer Nursery, 11240 S 66th St, Papillion, $29.99. www.canoyergardencenter.com www.OmahaPublications.com


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Project Interfaith uniting people of all beliefs and backgrounds

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Cover Story

GaLa

Story by Bailey Hemphill. Photos by minorwhitestudios.com

From Left: Kaitlyn Hayes, Beth Katz, Sierra Pirigyi, and Tom Laird

Project W Interfaith Uniting People of All Beliefs and Backgrounds

www.ReadOnlineNow.com

hen you are part of a religious minority, or any minority group for that matter, you often end up finding yourself in situations where you need to educate people about who you are because they make assumptions based on stereotypes and misinformation about you and your religious or ethnic identity,” says Beth Katz, Founder and Executive Director of Project Interfaith. Katz knows this from personal experience, as she was raised Jewish in Omaha, the community of which is around 6,000 people. Trying to represent or defend an identity can be exhausting when working with an uninformed audience, which was one of the reasons why Katz founded Project Interfaith—to create a community that is educated in religious, spiritual, and cultural identities and that can engage in a place not based on assumptions. During her undergraduate studies at Creighton University, Katz co-founded a student interfaith group where she created programs that included a speaker series, student dialogues, and an interfaith student retreat for the campus. She loved creating opportunities may/june  •  2012  

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Cover Story

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for people of different backgrounds to share and connect with one another. Upon graduating in 2000, Katz wanted to create a center for Jewish-Muslim relations with a friend who had, at the time, been the head of the Muslim Student Association, but a career in interfaith was somewhat uncommon. Putting her desire for an interfaith career to rest, Katz went to graduate school at the University of Michigan, studying public policy and social work. As she became more financially and professionally stable, she found that she still felt called to do interfaith work. “Being entrepreneurial by nature, I decided to come back to Omaha…I thought [it] might be ripe for a sustainable interfaith program.” Katz realized that many people outside of Omaha have low expectations about what really goes on in Nebraska. “I thought, ‘If we launch it here, in a conservative state in the middle of the country, and it succeeds, people from across the country will see that healthy interfaith relations are possible everywhere.’” And so, in 2005, she founded Project Interfaith. Project Interfaith seeks to serve as a leader and resource on interfaith relations and cultural diversity, offering community-building programs that educate and engage audiences on issues of faith, religion, identity, beliefs, and culture. The organization promotes Project Interfait’s Founder and Executive Director, Beth Katz objective learning and safeguards the fundamental rights and freedoms which enable a person to freely choose to practice—or not practice—a religion or belief system. Project Interfaith believes that people of all faiths, beliefs, and cultures should feel valued and protected. That’s why the organization’s efforts are focused on providing programs for the community to learn, share, and connect with each other about the religious and cultural diversity within the community. In addition to the many dialogues and discussions Project Interfaith offers to the community, the organization is also getting ready to launch their interactive multimedia site, RavelUnravel. The site will be an exploration into the religious and spiritual identities that make up the community and world through more than 720 video interviews (that the organization collected within the community) with people of different backgrounds. Not only can visitors to the site watch the videos, but they will also be able to upload their own and share playlists of their favorite videos. “We will be having a community launch event that will be open to the public on May 17th to celebrate the site going live and to launch the next phase of the project where we’ll be having a RavelUnravel bus traveling around Omaha this summer to collect additional videos,” says Katz. Katz, who was recently recognized as one of the Omaha Jaycee’s 2011 Ten Outstanding Young Omahans, feels that the vision of Project Interfaith is moving forward in the community. “Harvard University’s Pluralism Project, which tracks interfaith relations and activity, just cited RavelUnravel as a ‘Promising Practice’ of interfaith work in their new report…and we have been invited to share about our community-based interfaith work at UN Conferences, the White House, through State Department networks, and at other - Sierra Pirigyi, Program Coordinator national and global forums,” she says. Katz explains that the best way for Project Interfaith to measure their influence in the community is with the feedback they receive from community members who attend their programs. But the mission of Project Interfaith can’t be achieved by Katz

“We really are a team. Beth works really hard to create a sense of ownership in the Project Interfaith staff. There’s such an energy and excitement about what we’re doing here, and I think that passion that exists behind the scenes is what really drives [our] work.”

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alone. She has a staff that is “diverse, collaborative, small but mighty, and very passionate.” As a team, the Project Interfaith staff works hard to live out the values of the organization in their interaction with each other and those in the community. Two important members of the staff include Tom Laird, Development and Communications Director, and Sierra Pirigyi, Program Coordinator. Tom Laird initially began working with Project Interfaith as a volunteer in 2008. “Beth was working on the annual appeal and needed help with folding and stuffing envelopes. I came in after work and spent an evening helping out. On my way home, I realized I wanted to help out more.” Laird began coming in weekly to help with administrative tasks until his volunteering turned into an internship in communications in 2010. “I wanted my career to shift into the non-profit sector, and Beth thought a four-month internship would be the best way to help me determine if that was the case.” Obviously, it was; nine months after his internship was completed, Laird came on as Development and Communications Director when the position opened. As the Director of Development and Communications, Laird oversees the fundraising efforts and external outreach to the community. He researches and meets with prospective donors and foundations and also maintains the organization’s website, social media accounts, and branding. “Project Interfaith strives to offer programming and services that educate the community on the wealth of diversity that exists in matters of faith, belief and culture [through] programs that provide the opportunity to meet people of different backgrounds and beliefs—programs that put a face and a name to an individual from another faith tradition and take away the dangerous collective jargon of ‘they’ or ‘those people.’” Like Laird, Sierra Pirigyi started out as a volunteer and intern after being introduced to Katz by her former philosophy professor and member of Project Interfaith’s Advisory Council, Dr. Rayka Rush. At first, Pirigyi was apprehensive to get involved with Project Interfaith because she is an atheist. “I thought, ‘How can I work for an organization that does interfaith work?’ I wondered if I would even be welcome, or if I would have to hide my identity as an atheist.” Pirigyi had a preconceived notion—and one that is common—that interfaith work is only for the religious. But after meeting Katz, she learned that Project Interfaith works with all community members, including atheists and agnostics. >>

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Cover Story

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<< During her internship in 2010, Pirigyi focused primarily on programming needs, coordinating the multimedia project RavelUnravel (then titled Community Mosaic Video Project). She was officially hired in 2011 as Project Interfaith’s first Program Coordinator, which allows her to conceptualize and create programs, secure program partnerships, organize logistics, coordinate locations and volunteers, and develop program materials and curricula. Pirigyi believes the greatest reward in her work is seeing barriers broken and witnessing stereotypes dispelled. She loves working with the staff at Project Interfaith because they are extremely collaborative and inspiring. “We really are a team. Beth works really hard to create a sense of ownership in the Project Interfaith staff. There’s such an energy and excitement about what we’re doing here, and I think that passion that exists behind the scenes is what really drives [our] work.” Another variable has been driving the staff’s work lately as they were awarded a $100,000 Capacity-Building Challenge Grant this year from the Peter Kiewit Foundation (PKF), which supports a broad range of charitable and public-purpose projects. The stipulation of the challenge was that, if Project Interfaith could raise $200,000 in funding, the PKF would gift them with $100,000. “We are so close!” says Katz. “We have less than $30,000 left to raise to meet the conditions of the PFK grant.” Katz says that the goal is to have all of the funds raised by June 30th, the end of Project Interfaith’s fiscal year. “This is a terrific opportunity for community members to have a big impact—no matter the size of their tax-deductible donation—in helping to build our capacity so we can meet the growing needs and requests for our programs and services.” For every $2 a community member gives, the PKF will match with a $1 gift. “We very much welcome and rely on the support of individual community members, foundations, and businesses to move forward our efforts,” says Katz. GALA For more information about Project Interfaith, to make a donation, or to get involved, visit www. projectinterfaith.org or call 402-933-4647.

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OF THE MIDLANDS OMAHA • CARTER LAKE • COUNCIL BLUFFS

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may/june  •  2012  

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GaLa

Gala’s Inside Scoop Arthritis Walk 2012 Stinson Park at Aksarben Village May 12

J

oin the fight against the nation’s leading cause of disability by taking part in the Omaha Arthritis Walk! The Arthritis Walk is the signature fundraiser for the Arthritis Foundation. It’s not just an event; it’s a celebration of year-round movement to help prevent and treat arthritis, which affects 50 million Americans. More than just aches and pains, arthritis is a chronic condition that can make everyday activities, such as getting dressed and preparing food, seem almost impossible. With the Arthritis Walk, people get together to celebrate movement and make a positive impact on the lives of people living with arthritis by raising funds for arthritis research, education, and life improvement programs in 250 communities across the country. This year, the Walk is taking place at a brand-new location at Stinson Park in Aksarben Village. The Walk will feature three-mile and one-mile walk courses and will honor a very strong and independent young man, Wyatt, who was diagnosed with Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis. Day-of registration begins at 8:30am, and the Walk Kick-Off is at 10am. 2285 S. 67th St. For more information, visit www.lmt.arthritis.org or call 402-330-6130.

Top: Kool & the Gang Bottom: 50th Birthday Celebration

Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands’ 50th Birthday Celebration CenturyLink Center Omaha May 12

C

ome celebrate Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands’ 50th Birthday with its biggest special event to date! The evening will feature multimedia recaps of the Club’s 1962-2012 history, a cocktail hour, a patron party, and a live musical performance from two-time Grammy winners and Club alumni Kool & The Gang. The 50th Birthday Celebration is taking the place of the annual ‘On The Road’ fundraiser. The goal of this event will be to raise $400,000 to ensure that the Club can continue to serve area youth for the next 50 years. Dorene and General Lee Butler are serving as the event’s Honorary Chairs, and Suzanne and Walter Scott Jr. are serving as the BGC Society Honorary Chairs. The evening will also feature a short presentation from Rasheen Coleman, an Omaha Club alumnus and 1997 National Youth of the Year, whose story of overcoming a tragic childhood through the help of the Boys & Girls Club landed him an audience with President Bill Clinton, Oprah Winfrey, and Denzel Washington. $150 event tickets, $250 patron tickets. 455 N. 10th St. Patron Party at 5:30pm, Cocktail Hour at 6pm, and Kool & The Gang Concert at 8:30pm. For more information, visit www.bgcomaha.org or call 402-342-1600.

2011 Omaha Arthritis Walk Participants

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Galas This May/June

GaLa

Sand in the City CenturyLink Center Omaha June 1-3

K

ick off your summer by attending the area’s ultimate beach party, Nebraska Children’s Home Society’s Sand in the City 2012 at the CenturyLink Center Omaha. With 375 tons of sand, Downtown Omaha will be transformed into a beach. Corporate and community group teams will compete on Friday, June 1 to build their best 15-ton sand sculpture. This year, 21 teams are committed to participate in the sand-sculpting competition, which is the largest number to date. After the sand sculpting competition, the public is invited to a weekend full of family fun, starting on Saturday, June 2. View the sand sculptures, vote for your favorite, eat great food, and enjoy local entertainment from dance troops, cheer squads, and musical acts on the main stage. Play in the interactive Kid Zone, which features two gigantic sand boxes, bounce houses, face painting, and other kids games and activities. Proceeds from the event go to support the Nebraska Children’s Home Society, which has been providing safe and loving care to children of all ages through pregnancy and parenting services, adoption, foster care, and community programs since 1893. No admission on family fun days; although donations are always appreciated. 455 N. 10th St. Sat/10am-8pm; Sun/11am-5pm. For more information, visit www.sandinthecityomaha.com or call 402-451-0787.

Top: Arnold Weitz, Dean Rasmussen, Diane Sorensen, Gene Klein, and Leo Knowles Bottom: Tom and Shari Samek, Jane and Craig Pohlman

17th Annual Prairie Life Fitness Project Harmony Golf Invitational Indian Creek Golf Course June 12

I

Community team competes in the sand sculpture competition.

www.ReadOnlineNow.com

n its 17th year, the Prairie Life Fitness Project Harmony Golf Invitational has surpassed $2 million in net funds raised, and many of the event sponsors have been involved since its inception. With 192 golfers and 50 volunteers, the Golf Invitational will begin with range practice and a box lunch at 11am with a 1pm shotgun start. Following the 18-hole round, golfers will enjoy a barbeque dinner highlighted by tournament awards, sponsor recognition, pin prizes, raffle and mulligan drawings, and the inimitable wit of emcee John Knicely of WOWT. Co-Chairs are Dean Rasmussen and Jim Jansen, and the Committee is Diane Sorensen and Jennifer Rasmussen. All proceeds will go to benefit the children served by Project Harmony. During 2011, Project Harmony served 2,323 children, providing centralized, coordinated, and child-centered child abuse investigation, as well as assessment to children and their non-offending family members throughout eastern Nebraska and southwest Iowa. Co-housed with Omaha Police Department’s Child Victim Sexual Assault Unit and Nebraska Health & Human Services’ Child Protective Services, Project Harmony also provides case coordination and professional training. 3825 N. 202nd St. 11am. For more information, visit www.projectharmony. com or call 402-595-1326. may/june  •  2012  

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Galas, etc...

May/June

GaLa

a two-month look at upcoming fundraisers and other charitable events May 1 National Safety Council, Nebraska’s 6th Annual Golfing Fore Safety Who: Supports Greater Omaha’s “Safe Community” What: Golf tournament (registration deadline April 20) Where: Indian Creek Golf Course, 3825 N. 202 St. When: Tee time at 11:30am, Dinner at 4pm For more information, visit www.safetyandhealthsummit.com/golfing.html or call 402-898-7352. 8th Annual Kids Can Luncheon Who: Supports the Kids Can Community Center What: Luncheon featuring speakers Dr. Jim Harter and Dr. Laura Jana Where: CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St. When: 11:30am-1pm For more information, visit www.kidscanomaha. org or call 402-731-6988. May 2 Nebraska Friends of Foster Children Luncheon Who: Supports Nebraska Friends of Children and Nebraska Foster & Adoptive Parent Association What: Author Ashley Rhodes-Courter signing books, buffet lunch provided by Metro Community College (MCC)’s Institute for the Culinary Arts Where: MCC Fort Omaha Campus, Swanson Conference Center Building 22 When: 11am For more information, visit www.nfapa.org or call 402-650-1760. May 3 One World’s Countdown to Cinco de Mayo Who: Supports One World Community Health Center What: Festive music, appetizers, tour of South Omaha historic photo exhibit Where: Livestock Exchange Building, 4920 S. 30th St. When: 5:30-7:30pm For more information, visit www.oneworldomaha.org or call 402-502-8855. May 5 For the Kids Benefit 2012 Who: Supports the Omaha Children’s Museum What: Wizard of Ozthemed night with dinner, drinks, and shopping Where: Omaha Children’s Museum, 500 S. 20th St. For more information, visit www.ocm.org or call 402-342-6164.

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Omaha-Council Bluffs Heart Walk 2012 Who: Supports the American Heart Association What: Walk raising funds to help fight heart disease and stroke Where: Stinson Park at Aksarben Village, 2285 S. 67th St. When: 8am-12pm For more information, visit www.heart.org or call 402-346-0771 (ext. 28). May 11 Brownell-Talbot Gala 2012 Who: Supports the Brownell-Talbot School What: Fundraiser for Brownell-Talbot School Where: BrownellTalbot School, 400 N. Happy Hollow Blvd. For more information, visit www.brownell.edu or call 402-556-3772. 58th Annual B’nai B’rith Charity Sports Banquet Who: Supports the Jewish Federation of Omaha What: Featuring speaker Mike Leach, new head football coach at Washington State University Where: CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St. For more information, visit www.jewishomaha. org or call 402-334-8200. May 12 Cabaret 2012: An Evening with Lucie Arnaz Who: Supports the Child Saving Institute What: Cabaret with entertainer Lucie Arnaz, cocktails, dinner, and a raffle Where: Ramada Omaha, 3321 S. 72nd St. When: 6-9:30pm For more information, visit www.childsaving.org or call 402-504-3664. Great Strides: A Walk to Cure Cystic Fibrosis Who: Supports the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation What: Community event with one-mile health walk and family activities Where: Lewis & Clark Landing, 515 N. Riverfront Dr. When: 10:30am For more information, visit www.cff.org/chapters/ nebraska or call 402 May 14 DJ’s Hero Awards Luncheon Who: Supports The Salvation Army What: Luncheon honoring six DJ’s Hero Scholarship Award recipients Where: CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St. When: 11:45am

For more information, visit www.salvationarmy. org or call 402-898-5900. May 15 Big O! Excellence Awards Luncheon 2012 Who: Supports the Greater Omaha Chamber What: Luncheon recognizing individuals and businesses in Omaha (registration deadline May 8) Where: Ramada Omaha, 3321 S. 72nd St. When: 11:30am-1pm For more information, visit www.omahachamber. org or call 402-346-5000. May 17 Evening with Friends 2012 Who: Supports Midlands Hospital What: Benefit for cardiovascular services Where: Midlands One Professional Center, 11109 S. 84th St. When: 6pm For more information, visit www.alegent.com or call 402-593-3700. May 19 Mud Sweat & Beers Run Who: Supports the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Nebraska Chapter What: 7K-run with an after-party of brews, food, and live music (entrants must be 21 and over) Where: Quarry Oaks Golf Course. Ashland, Neb. For more information, visit www.mudsweatandbeerrun. com or call 402-944-6000. May 31 Evening with Friends 2012 Who: Supports Inclusive Communities What: Awards dinner recognizing distinguished society individuals and groups Where: Embassy Suites La Vista, 12520 Westport Pkwy When: 5:45-9pm For more information, visit www.inclusive-communities. org or call 402-391-4460. June 1 Joslyn Art Museum Association’s 2012 Gala Who: Supports the Joslyn Art Museum What: Celebration of upcoming exhibits Where: Joslyn Art Museum, 2200 Dodge St. For more information, visit www.joslyn.org or call 402-342-3300. June 3 Walk Across Nebraska Who: Supports the Nebraska Kidney Association What: Two-mile walk

to raise awareness of kidney disease and organ transplants Where: Towl Park, 9310 W. Center Rd. For more information, visit www.kidneyne.org or call 402-932-7200.

What: Food, beer, entertainment, and door prizes Where: Castle Barrett, 4330 Leavenworth St. When: 6-11pm For more information, visit www.nehumanesociety.org or call 402-905-3435.

Nebraska Tour de Cure 2012 Who: Supports the American Diabetes Association What: 10, 20, and 50-mile rides Where: Sarpy County Fairgrounds, 100 Main St, Springfield, Neb. For more information, visit www.diabetes.org or call 402-571-1101 (ext. 6882)

June 10 Munroe-Meyer Institute Guild Garden Walk Who: Supports UNMC’s Munroe-Meyer Institute What: Tour of local gardens featuring landscaping, planting, and patio treatments Where: Multiple locations around Omaha For more information, visit www.unmc.edu/ mmi/mmiguild.htm or call 402-559-6460.

June 5 25th Annual Tribute to Women Who: Supports the Women’s Center for Advancement What: Honoring achievements of Omaha’s distinguished women leaders Where: Ramada Omaha, 3321 S. 72nd St. When: 12-1:30pm For more information, visit www.wcaomaha.org or call 402-345-6555. June 6 Hops for Harmony Who: Supports Project Harmony What: Food and beer sampling with products from local vendors Where: Werner Park, 12356 Ball Park Way For more information, visit www.hopsforharmony.com. June 7 Backstage Bash Who: Supports Nebraska Shakespeare What: Feast, prizes, and a comedic mashup preview of the 2012 Shakespeare on the Green Where: Harper Center, Creighton University, 590 S. 20th St. When: 5:30-8:30pm For more information, visit www.nebraskashakespeare. com or call 402-556-4396. June 8 Pinot, Pigs, & Poets 2012 Who: Supports Completely KIDS What: Wine tasting and pork dish sampling Where: Happy Hollow Club, 1701 S. 105th St. When: Patron Pre-Pour at 6pm, event at 7pm For more information, visit www.completelykids. org or call 402-397-5809. Ales for Tails 2012 Who: Supports Nebraska Humane Society

June 14 Omaha Father of the Year Awards 2012 Who: Supports the American Diabetes Association What: Cocktail hour and silent auction recognizing local men in the community Where: Hilton Omaha, 1001 Cass St. When: 5-9pm For more information, visit www.diabetes.org or call 402-571-1101 (ext. 6887) June 22 Business on the Green Golf Outing 2012 Who: Supports the Greater Omaha Chamber What: Golf, lunch, and a chance to win prizes Where: Tiburon Golf Club, 10302 S. 168th St. When: 7am-6pm For more information, visit www.omahachamber. org or call 402-346-5000. June 25 Stephen Center Golf Outing Who: Supports the Stephen Center What: Golf outing Where: Shadow Ridge Country Club, 1501 S. 188th Plz. For more information, visit www.stephencenter. org or call 402-715-5476. Golf Fore Kids 2012 Who: Supports the Child Saving Institute What: Multidivisional golf tournament, lunch, and great prizes Where: The Players Club at Deer Creek, 12101 Deer Creek Dr. When: 11am For more information, visit www.childsaving.org or call 402-504-3664.

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Open Door Mission President/CEO, Candace Gregory with Shoppers

Beau Bonness, Erica Reiling, Rik Bonness, Shannon Bonness, Eric Bonness, Bridget Greer. Photo by Toberlin Photography

Excited Shopper finds a prom dress.

15th Annual JDRF Promise Gala

Ultra Chic Prom Boutique Courtesy of Open Door Mission

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ax I. Walker and the Open Door Mission hosted their 5th Annual Ultra Chic Prom Boutique at the Ramada Omaha in February. The boutique helps girls, who may not have been able to afford dresses for prom, purchase gently used gowns (which were pressed and cleaned by Max I. Walker) for $25. More than 500 turned out for the event, raising $12,800 for the Open Door Mission’s Lydia House, which provides safe shelter and emergency services to women and children in the community. Last year’s event raised around $9,400, so this year set the record, bringing the event’s total donations to around $40,000 since its inception.

Jorge, Abbey, Lindsey, and Leah Parodi

24th Annual Heart Ball

Courtesy of JDRF Omaha-Council Bluffs Chapter

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he Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund raised almost $635,000 for research to find a cure for type 1 diabetes at their 15th Annual Promise Gala at the Embassy Suites La Vista in February. Over 630 guests enjoyed the evening with KETV Newswatch 7’s Rob McCartney as Master of Ceremonies. The night included a dinner, a live auction, a personal story from Daron Smith, JDRF Board Member and President of Better Business Equipment, and a video presentation from Malone & Company reporting progress on finding a cure while highlighting Youth Ambassador, Madeline Mullen. Honorary Chair Couple was Shannon and Rik Bonness, and Event Chair Couple was Dana and Jess Zeiss.

ESN President and CEO Karen Carlson, Miss Nebraska Kayla Batt, Omaha Mayor Jim Suttle, and ESN Marketing & Development Director Ingra Anderson. Photo by Jamie Lynn Photography

Wine Event

Courtesy of American Heart Association

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ore than 500 attended the American Heart Association’s 2012 Heart Ball themed “HeART of the Matter” in February at Embassy Suites La Vista. The event raised $415,000 to support lifesaving discoveries and educational programs related to cardiovascular disease. 2012 Heart Princess Emily Karmazin was crowned by 2011 Heart Princess Hannah Hetherington at the Patron Party beginning the night. With Master of Ceremonies John Knicely, the main event included a shadow dance number from Robin Welch Dance studio and a live painting by performance artist Mike Debus. Event Chairs were Stephen and Anne Bruckner, and Honorary Chairs were Bruce and Stacy Simon. www.ReadOnlineNow.com

Courtesy of Easter Seals Nebraska

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ver 500 people came out for Easter Seals Nebraska’s 2012 Wine Event in March at Embassy Suites La Vista, raising over $225,000 to support programs for individuals with disabilities throughout Nebraska. The night involved around 20 vintners and included a reception, dinner, silent and grand auctions, and a special performance by the Omaha Prime Quartet. Emcee Mary Nelson led the evening with Jim Kalal as the auctioneer. Mayor Jim Suttle, Ralston Mayor Don Groesser, and Miss Nebraska Kayla Batt were among attendees of the evening. may/june  •  2012  

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Patty Kircher, Chef Rick Bayless, ConAgra Foods Foundation President Chris Kircher. Photo by Green Room Studios

Gala Co-Chairs Cindy Hanley and Karen Burkley, HFS Friends President Mary Zlomke, HFS President and CEO John Jeanetta, Honorary Chairs Kathy and Tom Martin

11th Annual Celebrity Chef Fundraiser

5th Annual “Carnival of Love”

Courtesy of Food Bank for the Heartland

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resented by ConAgra Foods, Food Bank for the Heartland hosted its 11th Annual Celebrity Chef Fundraiser at Embassy Suites La Vista in February with special guest Chef Rick Bayless, champion of Bravo’s first season of Top Chef Masters and recipient of multiple James Beard Awards. Drawing a crowd of over 900 guests, the event raised more than $225,000 for the Food Bank. During the evening, Chef Bayless demonstrated three recipes from his award-winning cookbooks, and the dishes were auctioned off. Michelle Scott of ConAgra Foods served as the event chairperson. Patron Party chairs were Melissa Marvin, Kim Reeves, and Jayne Timmerman.

Courtesy of Heartland Family Service

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n February, 480 guests headed to Embassy Suites La Vista for the 2012 “Carnival of Love” fundraiser for Heartland Family Service. Calliope music, tents, and carnival games turned the ballroom into an exciting carnival atmosphere. KMTV’s Carol Wang served as mistress of ceremonies, and Karen Burkley and Cindy Hanley served as Co-Chairs. Heartland Family Service Friends Guild volunteers sold raffle tickets, ran invoices to the tables, and assisted with the live auction. Funds raised will support Heartland Family Service’s mission to strengthen individuals and families in the community.

Black Hills Energy Team

Junior League American Girl Show Committee. Photo by MDP Dwyer Photography

Heartland Walk for Warmth 2012

American Girl Fashion Show 2012

Courtesy of Heartland Walk for Warmth

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he Heartland Walk for Warmth took place in February at Westroads Mall to raise funds and awareness for these programs. More than 400 walkers turned out to ensure people in the Omaha area in need of energy assistance will be able to heat their homes when it’s cold and cool their homes when it’s hot. The campaign ends May 31, and the goal is to raise $120,000. So far, the campaign has raised $99,000. The American Red Cross – Heartland Chapter and The Salvation Army will distribute the funds raised from the campaign.

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Courtesy of Junior League of Omaha

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merican Girl celebrated its 20th anniversary for the Junior League of Omaha in March at Happy Hollow Country Club. More than 1,000 friends and family watched as 350 girls modeled over the course of seven shows. There were raffle prizes, silent auctions, local vendors, and 75 volunteers that all helped support the event. The shows raised approximately $40,000, which went to help Junior League of Omaha’s projects. Special guests Craig Nigrelli, Hannah Pickett, and Jeremy Maskel of local news stations commentated the patron shows, where girls were escorted by an adult of their choice; and Miss Teen Nebraska USA, Sarah Summer, and Miss Nebraska USA, Amy Spilker, also attended and signed autographs. www.OmahaPublications.com


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Parker and Alanna Schenken with April and Kenny Rocker

Michele Martin, Joan Getscher, Pam Weekly, and Make-A-Wish President Brigette Young

Fandango

14th Annual Blue Jean Ball

Courtesy of Lutheran Family Services

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ver $115,000 was raised at Lutheran Family Services’ Fandango in February to support LFS’ children services programs to restore and create safe and happy childhoods, which include child abuse prevention, treatment for sexual abuse, and adoption planning for foster kids. With 250 guests in attendance, and John Oakey of KETV NewsWatch 7 as the emcee, LFS announced the completion of the merger with Adoption Links Worldwide. Honorary Chairs were Pam Finn, Kevin Jackson, and their children Tehra and Brandon Finn-Jackson. Co-chairs were Teri and Phil Krohn.

Courtesy of Make-A-Wish Foundation of Nebraska

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he Make-A-Wish Foundation of Nebraska’s Blue Jean Ball, themed “Wish Upon a Star,” drew more than 360 people and raised over $201,000 to support granting wishes for Nebraska children with lifethreatening medical conditions in March at the Mutual of Omaha Dome. With WOWT’s Malorie Maddox as the emcee, the event featured silent and live auctions, a raffle, and an elegant dinner. One of the highlights of the evening was when Maddox introduced 17-year-old wish kid Taylor, who performed to very moving songs for the guests. Event Chairwomen were Michele Martin and Joan Getscher, and Honorary Chairs were Rex and Deb Fisher.

Joe and Rebecca Runge

Event Chair Meghan Lewis and Rose Guild President Jennifer Zatechka

Around the World in Three Hours

19th Annual Rockin’ Rosie

Courtesy of NET Foundation

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ublic broadcasting travel host Rick Steves offered an informative and entertaining slideshow presentation to approximately 950 guests at a lecture supporting the Nebraska Educational Telecommunications (NET) Foundation in partnership with the Joslyn Art Museum in March. The travel expert kept the crowd riveted for more than three hours at the event with tales of his European escapes, plus tips on how to travel wisely, creatively, and on a budget. More than 80 NET members pledged for tickets to attend the meet and greet before the show, which went to help support NET’s mission. www.ReadOnlineNow.com

Courtesy of The Rose Theater Guild

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he Rose Theater Guild held its 19th Annual Rockin’ Rosie event in February at Ramada Omaha. Over 300 attended in western attire to support the event themed “Rosie Rocks the Ranch,” raising more than $135,000 to benefit the educational programs at The Rose Theater. The event, emceed by Travis Justice with auctioneer S. Scott Moore, included dinner, a live and silent auction, and entertainment provided by The Rose Theater Brigade, Country Kickers, and Bourbon Cowboys. Meghan Lewis served as the Event Chair, and Rick and Carol Russell served as the Honorary Chairs. may/june  •  2012  

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2 convenient office locations 107 Highland St. Papillion, NE 68046 (402) 330-1152 10801 Pacific St., Suite 200 Omaha, NE 68154 (402) 330-1152

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Greater Nebraska happenings Source: www.visitnebraska.gov, website for Nebraska Department of Economic Development, Travel & Tourism Division.

May & June may events may 1-31 madison, madison county: 2012 rails and trails event. Madison County Historical Museum, 210 W. 3rd St. Featuring the journey along the Meridian Highway joining Mexico with Canada. M-F, 1-4pm. Free admission. 402-992-1221. www. madisoncountyhistory.org may 3- 4 Beatrice, gage county: Heartland storytelling Festival. Homestead National Monument of America, 8523 W. Hwy 4. Storytellers entertain and educate visitors with stories about American culture and heritage. 10am-3pm. Free admission. 402-223-3514. www.nps.gov/home may 5-6 grand island, Hall county: nebraska muzzle loading rifle association gun show. Fonner Park and Heartland Events Center, 700 E. Stolley Park Rd. Sat/8am-5pm; Sun/8am-4pm. 308-384-7565. www.nebraskamuzzleloaders.com may 5-6 Papillion, sarpy county: nebraska renaissance Faire. Bellevue Berry & Pumpkin Patch, 11001 S. 48th St. A variety of live stage performers, historical demonstrators, equestrian jousting, and battle re-enactments. 11am-6pm. $11. 402-331-5500. www.bellevueberryfarm.com may 6 lincoln, lancaster county: lincoln marathon. Begins on UNL Campus Marathon and half-marathon road race. Th e fi nish line is on the 50-yard line in University of Nebraska’s Memorial Stadium. 7am. See website for entry fees. 402-435-3504. www.lincolnrun.org www.ReadOnlineNow.com

LaVista Days, returning May 24-27

may 8 grand island, Hall county: nebraska children’s groundwater Festival. Central Community College and College Park. Educating youth through lively entertainment, interactive displays and tangible experiments. Water magicians, folksingers, storytellers and raptor shows. 8am-4pm. 308-385-6282. www.cpnrd.org may 11-12 north Platte, lincoln county: Honky tonk BBQ Festival. Platte River Mall. Sanctioned competition and BBQ feed, live entertainment and more. 308-530-5139. www.honkytonkbbq.com may 13 lincoln, lancaster county: lincoln choral artists: a celebration in song. St. Paul United Methodist Church. Th e Lincoln Choral Artists perform with Lincoln’s Symphony Orchestra and the Hastings Area Children’s Choir. 3pm. 402-430-2395. www. lincolncivicchoir.info may 18 grand island, Hall county: stuhr under the stars. Stuhr Museum of the Prairie Pioneer, 3133 W. Hwy 34. Railroad Town will be the site for a family friendly, historically-based movie under the stars along with games, activities and food. 7pm. $8-10. 308-385-5316. www.stuhrmuseum.org may 18-20 lincoln, lancaster county: lincoln Quilter’s guild 2012 Quilt show. Weary Center, Nebraska Wesleyan University, 53rd & Huntington. More than 300 quilts, vendors, live and silent auction, demonstration and tours of the International Quilt Study Center. 9am-5pm. $6. 402-4679467. www.lincolnquiltersguild.org

Summer in Sarpy County is bursting with fun! La Vista, Springfi eld, Papillion, Bellevue and Gretna each host a citywide celebration of summer. Parades, carnivals, family entertainment, cookouts and cook-off s abound; and each town off ers something special. Th ere will be concerts for all ages in La Vista, fi reworks in Springfi eld, and Papillion is producing Papillion’s Got Talent. Gretna off ers sporting events of all kinds, including golf, volleyball, and horseshoes, and RiverFest in Bellevue is home to the Nebraska State BBQ Championship and Music Festival. La Vista Daze, May 24-27; Springfi eld Days, June 8-9; Papillion Days, June 14-17; RiverFest, July 20-21; Gretna Days, July 20-22.

Actor portrayals of John & Jessie Fremont Come celebrate John C. Fremont Days July 13-15, 2012. John C. Fremont Days is an award-winning celebration of Fremont’s history. Th e city of Fremont is named after the Army explorer who visited the area on a scouting expedition in 1842. Th is familyoriented citywide festival has over 150 events and acts with something for everyone… and the best part is there is no admission fee (most things are free!). Activities include living history encampments, historical tours, a Chautauqua Tent with continuous entertainment, auto show, sporting events, children’s events, arts and craft fair, two food courts, antique and collectors show, rough stock rodeo, Spam cooking contest, a historical parade, music, and so much more. For more information visit our web page at www.johncfremontdays.com, email us at contact@johncfremontdays.com or call Jeff Hoff man, Executive Director at 402.727.9428. may/june   •  2012  

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So Near, So FUN!

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Bellevue Papillion Offutt AFB La Vista Gretna Springfield w w w. g o s a r p y. c o m www.OmahaPublications.com


Greater Nebraska Happenings may 19 ashland, saunders county: 2nd annual lucky Bucket 7k trail run. Quarry Oaks Golf Club, 16600 Quarry Oaks Dr. More than 2,500 costumed and crazy runners and walkers compete in this 4.3-mile trail run through some of the most spectacular wooded terrain in eastern Nebraska. 6pm. See website. 402-944-6000. www.luckybucketrun.com may 20-25 Beatrice, gage county: nebraska chautauqua & 150th commemoration of the Homestead act. Homestead National Monument of America, 8523 W. NE Hwy 4. Scholars present fi rst-person historical portrayals of prominent fi gures including Mark Twain, Willa Cather, Standing Bear, Laura Ingalls Wilder, and more. Free admission. 402-223-3514. www.nebraskachautauqua.org may 25 Humboldt, richardson county: memorial Day BBQ. City-wide Celebrate with a BBQ, ice cream social and Happy Czechs Polka band. 5-8pm. 402862-2821. www.ci.humboldt.ne.us may 25 lexington, Dawson county: Buzzard migration Wine release Party. Mac’s Creek Winery & Vineyards, 43315 Rd 757. Join the winery in releasing the 2011 vintage of Nebraska’s favorite summertime wine – Buzzard’s Roost Blush. Appetizers, live entertainment, and wine tastings. 5-9pm. Free admission. 308-3240440. www.macscreekvineyards. com may 25-27 superior, nuckolls county: victorian Festival. Celebrate the heritage of Superior. Parade, children’s activities, food, Victorian tea honoring Lady Vestey, craft fair, dances and more. 9am-4pm. 402-879-3419. www.victorianfestival.info

www.ReadOnlineNow.com

may 26 Beatrice, gage county: monumental Fiddling championship and acoustic Band contest. Homestead National Monument of America, 8523 W. NE Hwy 4. A day of music and competition with fi ddlers and musicians of all ages. 10am-9pm. Free admission. 402223-3514. www.nps.gov/home may 26 -28 Brownville, nemaha county: spring Flea market. Main St. More than 200 vendors from across the United States. Antiques, fl owers, jewelry, collectibles and food. 8am-6pm. Free admission. 402-825-3731. www.brownville-ne.com

You’re welcome to enjoy the hometown festivals in Fillmore County. Whether you want to eat BBQ, watch a parade, be awed by a BIG Truck Shine event, see a tractor pull, hear polka music, or dance in the street until midnight, you’ll fi nd something interesting to do. Ohiowa is celebrating its 125th year by having living history demonstrations, Geneva will celebrate patriotism with fi reworks, Milligan challenges you complete a Road Rally Exeter off ers games for everyone and Fairmont knows how to host a picnic—it’s the 136th year of the Old Settler’s Picnic. www.visitfi llmorecounty.org

may 28 grand island, Hall county: 1892 memorial Day celebration. Stuhr Museum, 3133 W. US Hwy 34. A fl ag-led procession to the rural cemetery, remembrance ceremony, band concert and more. 9am-5pm. $8-10. 308-3855316. www.stuhrmuseum.org may 31-june 3 comstock, custer county: comstock country Fest. 46095 Sargent Ord Rd. Nebraska’s party in the pasture brings your favorite country artists up close and personal. Camping available. 308-225-4843. www. comstockmusicfestivals.com

Be Our Guest at the Sandhills Guest House Motel! Th e Motel, conveniently located along Hwy. 20 in Atkinson, Neb., is just minutes away from some of the area's fi nest restaurants, museums, golf courses, lakes and parks. With competitive rates and the cleanest rooms, we strive to meet all of your lodging needs. Off ering 16 spacious interior units, all in a 100-percent smoke-free facility. Th e SGH Motel features a free quick-start breakfast, wireless internet, local calls and cable TV. King rooms, Double Queen rooms, Offi ce Suites, Adjoining rooms and a Honeymoon/Jacuzzi Suite available. Accepting all major credit cards. 402-925-5600 www.atkinsonmotel.com

june events june 1-10 Beatrice, gage county: Wrong Window. Community Players Th eatre, 412 Ella St. Hitchcock will never be the same after this hilarious farce. F-Sat/7:30pm; Sun/2pm. $10-15. 402-228-1801. www.beatricecommunityplayers.com june 1-3 alliance, Box Butte county: thunder on the Prairie rod run. Central Park. Classic cars, street rods and trucks on display along with a dance, poker run and award program. 308-7621969. www.385cruisers.com

Get away this summer with the Nebraska Passport. Featuring 10 themed tours and 80 diff erent attractions, the Passport is your chance to explore the state, win great prizes, and come home with new stories to tell. Beginning May 1st, you can pick up a passport at any participating attraction (see a complete list of attractions at NebraskaPassport.com). Fill it with stamps to be eligible to win T-shirts, gift cards, digital cameras, and even an Apple® iPad™. What are you waiting for? Get out and create your adventure today! may/june  •  2012  

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Greater Nebraska Happenings june 1-july 15 o’neill, Holt county: journey stories, a smithsonian exhibition. O’Neill Community Center. Smithsonian traveling exhibit showing how America’s evolving mobility changed a young nation and how transportation made us grow. 402-336-3110. www.nebraskahumanities.org june 2-4 Wymore, gage county: 25th annual sam Wymore Days. Join in the fun and celebrate the founding of Wymore. Parade, fl ea market, horse show and free entertainment. 402-674-3205. www.wymorebluesprings.com june 3 york, york county: Family Fun Day. Wessels Living History Farm, 1 mi. S. of I-80 Exit 353 on US Hwy 81. Craft activities, games, wagon rides, face painting, animals and special programs. 1-4:30pm, $2-5. 402-710-0682. www.livinghistoryfarm.org june 5-aug 26 Plattsmouth, cass county: native american artifacts exhibit. Cass County Historical Museum, 646 Main St. Featuring arrowheads, tools and pottery. Tu-Sun/12-4pm, $2.50/adult. 402296-4770. www.nebraskamuseums.org june 7-10 Blair, Washington county: gateway to the West Days. Four day festival including Taste of Blair, Jazz in the Park, street dance, craft show, car show, carnival and more. 402-533-4455. www.blairchamber.org

june 9-23 north Platte, lincoln county: neBraskaland Days. Explore the lure of the West including PRCA rodeos, top name concerts, parades, athletic contests, food events, art shows and many more. 308-532-7939. www.nebraskalanddays.com

columbus 11th annual spring Festival. Auto show, fl ea market, kids tractor pull, food festival and live entertainment. 6pm, Free admission. 402-352-5883. JCFDays_2012_Omag.pdf 4/5/12 3:54:53 www.schuylerne.net

june 10 kearney, Buffalo county: 5th annual Half marathon: Buffalo countystampede. Trails & Rails Museum, 710 W. 11th St. Race begins at 7am. $35-40. 308-234-3041. www.bchs.us june 10 schuyler, colfax county: knights of

Wildlife Adventures

er Fun Festivals Summ

Kreycik Riverview Elk & Buffalo Covered Wagon Tours

in Fillmore County

Exeter, Fairmont, Geneva, Milligan, Ohiowa

(Pet Elk & Feed Buffalo)

www.visitfillmorecounty.org

Tours available May 19 - Sept. 30 Saturdays: 10 a.m.& 2 p.m. Sundays: 2 p.m. Reservations Required: Call: 402.857.3850 Email: kreycikelkranch@yahoo.com Kenard, Chris, and Steve Kreycik - 88971 517 Ave., Niobrara, NE 68760 - www.nebraskaelktours.com

Sandhills Guest House Inn & Suites

Call 402.925.5600 Along Highway 20, Atkinson, NE

june 7-9 north Platte, lincoln county: miss nebraska Pageant. North Platte High School, 1200 W. 2nd St. 308-534-3638. www.missnebraska.org june 8-10 crawford, Dawes county: intertribal gathering at Fort robinson state Park. 3200 US Hwy 20. Exciting cultural festival with authentic Native American arts and crafts along with traditional pow-wow dancing, drum and song. 308-432-2174. www. outdoornebraska.org june 8-9 Battle creek, madison county: Battle creek Fun Days. Main St Street dance, fun run/ walk, talent show, parade, BBQ, fi reworks and music. 402-640-6738. www.visitnorfolkne.com june 9 Petersburg, Boone county: street Dance, car show and cruise night. Main St. Enjoy a street dance, BBQ, car show and cruise sponsored by the Petersburg Fire Department. 6pm. 402-386-5266. www.ci.petersburg.ne.us june 9 & 16 long Pine, Brown county: long Pine Day, BBQ and Bluegrass Festival. Main Street and Long Pine Palace. Old-fashioned community celebration with a large parade, games, BBQ and outstanding bluegrass music by Steve Hansen’s Bluegrass Campers. 402-273-4351. www.cityofl ongpine.org

5 months, 10 tours, 80 stops . . . What Will yOur aDveNture be? the 2012 Nebraska passport is your chance to get out and explore the state, win great prizes and come home with new stories to tell. What are you waiting for? Create your adventure today. Get the details at

NebraskaPassport.com.

888-444-1867, Dept. 2OMp Nebraska Department of economic Development, travel and tourism Division

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Greater Nebraska Happenings june 13-14 Bassett, rock county: sandhills ranch expo. Rock County Fairgrounds. State-of-the-art ranching equipment, cattle and more. W/10am7pm; Th /10am-5pm. Free admission. 402-684-2320. www.sandhillsranchexpo.com june 13-17 Beatrice, gage county: Homestead Days. Homestead National Monument of America, 8523 W. NE Hwy 4. Interactive opportunities to experience pioneer life with traditional demonstrators. Parade, children’s games, vendors, 10K walk/run and ribfest. Free admission. 402-2232338. www.visitbeatrice.com june 13-17 norfolk, madison county: viero great american comedy Festival. Johnny Carson Th eatre, 801 Riverside Blvd and Divots Conference Center on Hwy 275. In honor of Johnny Carson, the king of late-night television. Showcasing some of the best amateur and professional comedians from across the nation. $10-25. 877371-1020. www.greatamericancomedyfestival.com june 14-15 clarkson, colfax county: annual mid-states rodeo. City park. From broncs to bulls, roping to wrestling, it’s great family entertainment. 7:30pm. 402892-3457. www.ci.clarkson.ne.us june 15-16 ashland, saunders county: 19th annual testicle Festival. Round the Bend Steakhouse, 30801 E. Park Hwy - 2mi. E. of I-80 Exit 426. Enjoy 2 nights of live bands! Rocky mountain oysters, burgers, hot dogs, funnel cakes and all your favorite beverages available. 5pm-12:30am. $5. 402-944-9974. www.roundthebendsteakhouse.com june 15-16 Holdrege, Phelps county: swedish Days. Downtown between 4th & 6th. A fun street festival with vendors, Heartland Cruisers Car Show, ribfest, street dance, live music, parade, www.ReadOnlineNow.com

10K and 5K races and more. 9ammidnight. Free admission. 308-9954444. www.holdregechamber.com june 15-16 lewellen, garden county: 20th annual ash Hollow Historical Pageant. Ash Hollow State Historical Park. A cast of 30 perform in this dramatic outdoor musical. Tours, displays and chuckwagon supper. Dinner at 5pm; show begins at 6:30pm, Park permit required. $6-10. 308-7785548. www.voanebraska.org june 15-16 Pender, thurston county: Pender Bender BBQ competition. Main St A Kansas City BBQ Society sanctioned event. Tractor show, classic car cruise and more. 402-385-3166. www.penderthurston.com june 15-17 clarkson, colfax county: 50th annual czech Festival. Entertainment for all ages including ethnic foods, music and dancing. 402-892-3556. www. ci.clarkson.ne.us june 16 chadron, Dawes county: chadron state Park’s 91st anniversary celebration.15951 s. Hwy 385. Craft show, arts in the park, archery shoot, paddle boat races, antique tractor show, demonstrations, live music and 91 cent meals. Park permit required. 308-4326167. www.outdoornebraska.org

Kreycik River View Elk & Buffalo Covered Wagon Tours are off ered along the scenic Niobrara River Valley at Niobrara, Neb. Tourists are educated on how elk and buff alo are raised and can pet and hand-feed the animals, if they choose. All ages enjoy our tours, as well as express how beautiful the scenery is. Tours available May 19 through September 30 on Saturdays at 10am and 2pm, Sundays at 2pm. Special tours for 10 or more people are available weekdays by appointment only. Call 402-857-3850 for reservations. Elk & buff alo meat available for sale in Gift Shop.

of the museum using sites as jumping off points for explorations of ghost stories, crimes and urban legends. 6-9pm. $6-8. 308-385-5316. www.stuhrmuseum.org june 16 imperial, chase county: celebration on the square. Courthouse square. A celebration of arts and music featuring entertainment, crafts, food and children’s activities. 9am-1pm. Free admission. 308-8835398. www.chasecounty.com june 16 norfolk, madison county: laugh and a Half marathon. Johnny Carson Th eatre, 801 Riverside Blvd Join in this run that touches your funny bone as well as your feet. $25 and up. 402-371-0100. www. laughandahalfmarathon.com june 16-17 johnson, nemaha county: johnson Daze. Main St. Enjoy the 48th annual Father’s Day chicken BBQ, street dance and other activities. 402868-4105. www.johnson-ne.com

june 16 Fairbury, jefferson county: run, row, rock & roll adventure race. Burkley Wellness Center, 2200 H St. Take part in the multi-event adventure race including running, trekking, navigating, canoeing, mountain biking and mystery events. 8am6pm. $45-65 for participants; free for spectators. 402-729-6139. www. angrycowadventures.com

june 16 -17 norfolk, madison county: nebraska airfest and 2012 state Fly-in. Norfolk Regional Airport, 4100 S. 13th St. Air show and aviation gathering including airplanes, helicopters, balloons, gliders, food, entertainment and more. $8-12. 800-777-6159. www.nebraskaairfest.com

june 16 grand island, Hall county: ghosts, crimes and urban legends. Stuhr Museum, 3133 W. US Hwy 34. Th e darker side of Hall County history is brought to life during these lantern-led tours

june 22-23 West Point, cuming county: great nebraska tractor ride. Th rough West Point, Tekamah and Oakland A two-day tractor ride along Nebraska’s scenic highways. $50 to participate prior to March 1. 402-372-5423. www.nebraskatractorride.com

june 17-23 grand island, Hall county: national 4-H shooting competition. Fonner Park and Heartland Events Center, 700 E. Stolley Park Rd. 402-395-2158. www.4-hshootingsports.org

june 22-24 scottsbluff, scotts Bluff county:circle the Bluffs Powwow. Western Nebraska Community College, 1601 E. 27th St. Traditional powwow with singing, drumming and Native American dancing. F/7pm; Sat/1 & 7pm; Sun/12pm. Free admission. 308-225-1325. june 23 nebraska city, otoe county: juneteenth celebration. Mayhew Cabin, 2012 4th Corso. Th e oldest known holiday celebrating the end of American slavery. Living history programs, historical speakers and children’s activities. 12-5pm. 402-873-3115. www.mayhewcabin.org june 29-30 norfolk, madison county: Divots musicfest 2012. Divots DeVent Center, 4200 W. Norfolk Ave. Annual music festival with local, regional and national acts performing daily. 4pm-midnight. 402-844-2987. www.divotsconcertseries.com june 30 Weeping Water, cass county: limestone independence Day. Events include BBQ, fi reworks display, street dance, duck races, fi shing contest, rock olympics and more. 7:30am-midnight. Free admission. 402-267-5152. www.weepingwaternebraska.com may/june  •  2012  

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Omaha Faces Story by Molly Garriott • Photo by minorwhitestudios.com

Natalie Jensen

Portraits, Weddings, and CWS

T

he release of the ball from the pitcher’s hand. A harrowing slide into home

plate. The steady poise of an outfielder as the ball drops in his mitt. These are the pictorial stuff of College World Series photography. These images encapsulate the magic of the game. Unless you are Natalie Jensen. The Fremont native turns her camera lens away from the high action of the ball diamond and trains it on faces in the dugout and stands. Through her camera’s perspective, the drama of the All-American sport is captured in individual expression. It’s the unadulterated joy on a young boy’s face as his team’s pitcher strikes out yet another opponent. It’s the intense set of the jaw as the fan watches the last batter for his team kick the dirt around home plate, raise the bat behind his head, and fix the pitcher with a steely stare. It’s the explosion in the dugout—a mix of jubilance, encouragement, and hopes held in the balance—as a teammate’s bat makes cracking contact with the ball, sending it far into the outfield. Jensen— primarily a portrait and wedding photographer (Natalie Jensen Photography)— admits 112 

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she does not fit the typical sports photojournalist mold. Oh, she hits every game during the College World Series. She is on a firstname basis with ESPN camera crews and many of the national sports reporters. She is a credentialed sports photographer with the NCAA. And she knows her baseball. But instead of chronicling the games, Jensen states, “I capture the spirit and emotions of the College World Series.” This is the hallmark of Natalie Jensen’s photography. She had always been drawn to the medium—she was a sports photographer www.OmahaPublications.com


for her high school newspaper in Fremont— yet it wasn’t her educational focus. Nursing was. She met her husband during college; they married and immediately started a family. She picked up her camera to chart her mother’s marvel of her growing children. Soon friends asked her to photograph their children. She had an essence different from a studio approach, what Jensen describes as a “mother’s point of view.” “I want to capture those moments I feel with that child,” she explains. The result is less posed and more poetic. She shoots predominantly in black and white, and her style is easy, comfortable, candid, with natural light featuring heavily in her body of work. This led to wedding engagements and senior portrait sittings. “I picked up my camera and realized I could earn a living,” Jensen confesses with a shrug. So she honed her innate skills by attending Professional Photographers Association sponsored seminars by photographers whom she admired and eventually opened her by-appointment-only studio in southwest Omaha. Her body of work caught the eye of Mark Johnson of CWS Inc. In 2003, he asked Jensen to join the company’s team of photographers to focus her lens on the spirit of the CWS— the emotions and actions of the fans in the stands and the players watching from the dugout. Her work is used in promotional pieces for CWS Inc. While Jensen misses the old-timey feel of Rosenblatt, she finds TD Ameritrade Park exciting and fresh. And she knows it is just a matter of time before it feels like home again. Since beginning her work with CWS Inc. almost a decade ago, the series has become her favorite part of summer. “Like kids look forward to summer camp each July, I look forward to the College World Series every June.” Still, Jensen’s first love of photographing children, capturing their innocence, joy and spirit, has never waned. She’s establishing a little league photography business called Facing the Game Photography, and has volunteered with Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep Photography, which photographs stillborns at the hospital where they are born. For more information on Natalie Jenson's work, visit www.nataliejensonphotography.com www.ReadOnlineNow.com

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Gen O Story by Linda Persigehl Photos by minorwhitestudios.com

A

s Jocelyn Robertshaw arrives at our photographer’s

studio, it becomes immediately obvious that this is a young woman with concrete goals and the ambition to attain them. A petite, pretty young blonde dressed to the nines, she hauls in two full-size mannequins (taller than her) and two beautiful designer bridal gowns and quickly dresses them for the shoot. She’s fully prepared to promote her Rockbrook Village wedding dress boutique Ready or Knot, which she opened in August 2011. “I want [my shop] to become to one of the Midwest’s premier destinations for bridalwear,” Robertshaw, 30, explains. “I want to create a personal connection with our clients…have them feel like their shopping from a fun closet…make it a good experience for them, not at all overwhelming.” A native of small-town Aurora, Neb., west of Lincoln, Robertshaw earned a bachelor’s in business administration from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She spent several years in medical sales, traveling daily and moving several times, all the while saving for her dream of owning her own business. “I’ve always loved weddings,” shares Robertshaw, who says as much with her very animated hands and her smile as she does with her words. “I was in my first wedding at age 4, and I loved it! I’ve subscribed to Martha Stewart Weddings magazine for years.” 114 

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Jocelyn Robertshaw

Said Yes to the Dress

After watching so many of her hometown and college girlfriends make the trek to Kansas City to shop for couture bridal gowns and bridesmaid dresses, she decided there was definitely a wedding niche to fill in Nebraska. “It was always a hassle…getting all the friends and family to drive down to KC, going back and forth for fittings,” she says. Robertshaw used her own money for the start-up costs to open Ready or Knot last year, and has since worked to grow her clientele by creating a “chic, stylish and modern experience for Omaha area brides.” The store’s “big city couture style” bridal gowns range from $1,000 to $6,000; bridesmaids dresses range from $200 to $450; The shop also boasts “small town service” and regularly hosts special events including wedding designer trunk shows and Hitched Happy Hours, complete with champagne and cake for guests. The very sociable Robertshaw is active outside of work as well, networking through participation in Omaha Women’s Fund Circles, the UNL Young Alumni Board, Rockbrook Village Merchants Assoc., and Chi Omega Alumnae Group. www.OmahaPublications.com


Omaha Feature Story by Mystery Reviewer • Photos by minorwhitestudios.com

Fine Tequila Tastings At La Mesa

Jose Salazar, Manager of La Mesa, shares his love for Tequila. The restaurant's next Tequila Tasting event is June 2.

T

equila was North America’s

first distilled spirit. Sadly, for most of its history, it has been tarnished with a reputation as a cheap liquor often used to make margaritas or “shooters” with lime and salt. In the last couple of decades, that has started to change as many distillers are producing high-end tequilas for export to America that are designed to be collected, sipped, and savored. I have been a connoisseur of high-end tequilas since the mid ‘80s. Back then they were hard to find, but nowadays most every reputable bar will have several high-end tequilas on their premium liquor

www.ReadOnlineNow.com

list. Tequila is becoming the North American version of Scotch. To be classified as tequila, it must be made from a distillation of at least 51 percent blue agave and be from the state of Jalisco. Highend tequilas are always made from 100 percent blue agave. Today’s high-end tequilas are highly coveted by collectors worldwide for both the smooth aromatic liquor and the handcrafted decorative bottle. Locally, the great people at the La Mesa Mexican Restaurants have embraced the popularity of fine tequilas. The managers and employees at the La Mesa restaurants are extremely knowledgable about tequila and take it very seriously. In fact, La Mesa was the first Mexican restaurant in the Midwest to be certified by the Tequila Regulatory Council. I have not found a better selection of high-end tequilas anywhere in town. For the past several years, La Mesa has been hosting special Tequila tasting dinner events. I have attended some of these events, and I can tell you that these events are an excellent opportunity for novice tequila drinkers and connoisseurs alike to enjoy some fine tequilas and learn more about their characteristics and production. The events often include a presentation by the distiller and a multi-course dinner with each dish paired with a different tequila. The food at these events deserves special mention. The chefs at La Mesa must really enjoy these events because they go all out, and the creative Mexican dishes they come up with are reason alone to attend one of these events. The next La Mesa Tequila Tasting event is scheduled for June 2. Make your reservation today at any La Mesa location. You’ll be glad you did. Cheers! For more information or to get on La Mesa’s mailing list to be notified of future tequila tasting dinner events, go to www.la-mesa.com/email.php may/june  •  2012  

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Omaha Food chef profile Story by K.J. McKercher • Photos by minorwhitestudios.com

M Chef Mike's Community Café

Chef Michael T. Whitner

& Catering

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ost people dream of leav-

ing the place where they grew up. Chef Michael T. Whitner's dream was to get back to it. Whitner, best known by his nickname, Chef Mike, grew up deep in North Omaha in the area known as the Flatlands. Violence, he says, was an everyday reality, and there weren't many good role models for kids. There were a few, though, and Charlie Hall was Whitner's. Hall returned to North Omaha and opened his own restaurant, the Fair Deal Café. "I wanted to follow in his footsteps," says Whitner. "That was my dream, to open a business." www.OmahaPublications.com


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DUCHESNE ACADEMY

Though the ambition was planted early, Whitner didn’t discover his culinary skills until later in life and quite by accident. While playing semi-pro football with the River City Raiders, Whitner started cooking the kind of food he wanted to eat, which turned out to be the kind of food other people wanted to eat, too! Slowly, requests from friends grew into the seeds of a business, seeds that blossomed when Whitner went into the catering business with Nick Kojiwa. Whitner credits Kojiwa as the mentor who taught him the ropes of catering as a business. Now, Whitner has achieved his dream with twin businesses, Chef Mike's Catering and Chef Mike's Community Café, found at 2401 Lake St. in the heart of North Omaha. He's again following in Charlie Hall's footsteps, this time in providing a role model for the neighborhood kids. Whitner mentors with the Urban League and Nebraska First and offers healthy eating classes and basic culinary training to young people. "That's all they need," he says. "Something to do,…not giving in to violence." He also helps with food for fundraisers for Sword of the Spirit, the neighborhood school, and by providing hot dogs for Safe Play Day events, where police provide protection so young children can have a guaranteed safe day of playing outdoors. Whitner helps whenever and wherever he can, in ways large and small. This home-grown North Omaha chef has made it his mission to help North Omaha grow.

www.mountmichael.com

www.duchesneacademy.org

www.roncallicatholic.org  

GROSS CATHOLIC  HIGH SCHOOL

V.J. AND ANGELA SKUTT  CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL

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MARIAN HIGH SCHOOL

SERVICE

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For more information, visit www.chefmike.net www.ReadOnlineNow.com

may/june  •  2012  

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Omaha Food restaurant review Story by Mystery Reviewer • Photos by minorwhitestudios.com

Jackson Street Tavern

W

hen I think of a tavern, I usu-

ally think of a place where you go primarily to drink and the food is secondary. At the Jackson Street Tavern, it seems like the roles are reversed. If you just went in for a drink, you would miss out on one of the better meals that can be found anywhere in the Old Market. Sure, the dark wood paneling, lacquered wood tables, and large wood bar give it more of a bar feel than a bistro, but the excellent service and menu offerings quickly dispel that notion and inform you that this is a casual gourmet restaurant that also serves drinks. The restaurant’s design keeps with the Old Market theme of using lots of bricks, painted cement, and hardwoods. The result is a very cozy space in which anyone would be comfortable. The menu at the Jackson Street Tavern runs the whole gamut with everything from tapas, small plates, salads, and sandwiches to pastas, steaks, seafood, pork, and poultry to dessert. Most everything is prepared with fresh ingredients, lots of creativity, and big flavors. As you might expect, they have a full bar, a diverse selection of beers, and a very well-thought-out list of excellent wines. On a recent visit, I started by enjoying a Lucky Bucket IPA ($4.25), which they had on tap. This local beer brewed in La Vista was excellent as always. My dining partner and I also ordered the “Big Bamboo” ($12) along with the “Bruschetta Capris” ($7) as appetizers. The Big Bamboo featured large 118 

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JST Chef Deke Reichardt

We at Millard Family Eyecare pride ourselves on our thorough, up-to-date eyecare, quality products, and friendly service.

12660 Q Street • 402-896-3300 www.MillardFamilyEyecare.com

bacon-wrapped shrimp with pineapple chunks, glazed with a Thai chili sauce and served on bamboo skewers. This dish was phenomenal! The bruschetta was also tasty and a great example of this classic appetizer. Next, I tried a cup of the Chicken Noodle Soup ($4). This scratchmade soup was an enjoyable rendition of this classic soup. For an entree, I had the Cavatelli Di Mare ($23). This shell pasta dish was loaded with giant sea scallops, gulf shrimp, and Maine lobster. It was sauced with a smooth roasted garlic cream sauce and topped with fresh grated Parmesan. I could go on and on about this one, but suffice to say it was stellar. Meanwhile, my dining partner had the Chicken Fried Chicken, served with mashed potatoes and gravy ($13). This dish, only available on Wednesdays, was fabulous. The hand-tenderized, moist chicken breast and perfectly seasoned breading combined to make this dish memorable as well. The desserts at the Jackson Street Tavern are all made in-house save one—the Lithuanian Torte, which comes from the famous Lithuanian Bakery in Omaha. We tried the White Chocolate-Wild Berry Bread Pudding ($5). This bread pudding was a little light on white chocolate considering the name, but the sweet bread custard itself was great and the wild berry sauce was off the charts. The service at the Jackson Street Tavern was excellent. The young man who waited on Jackson Street Tavern us was obviously a skilled veteran at the fine 1125 Jackson St. #3 art of table service. If he made any mistakes, 402-991-5637 I did not notice. His recommendations were spot on, and he was very friendly. Between the Food & Beverage *** 1/2 great food, service, ambiance and location, I Service *** 1/2 can safely say that the Jackson Street Tavern Ambiance *** is one of those rare restaurants that fires on Price Moderate all cylinders and has therefore earned a spot Overall *** 1/2 on my list of favorites. Don’t just take my 5 Stars Possible word for it, go see for yourself. Cheers! www.ReadOnlineNow.com

Thanks for voting us Best of Omaha®! Visit One Pilates to see what we can do for you! We specialize in smaller classes for more attention to detail for better results. 15732 West Center Road onepilates@cox.net • 402-871-8772 may/june  2012  

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Legend (average price per entrée)

$1 to 10 - $, $10 to 20 - $$, $20 to 30 - $$$, $30 and over - $$$$

MC, V, A E, DC

AMERICAN

Bailey’s breakfast and lunch

402-932-5577 1259 S. 120TH St. Comfort food done with flair. For breakfast; all your favorites, featuring Omaha’s finest Eggs Benedict – 6 varieties, (and Crepes, too) topped with Hollandaise made fresh every day. Come try the best bacon you will ever eat! Breakfast served all day. And treat yourself to some of Omaha’s finest Salads, Soups, and Sandwiches, plus Chicken Fried Steak, fresh Angus burgers, and Bloody Mary’s and Mimosas. When is the last time you had really good Egg Salad or Chicken Salad??? Open 7 days a week 7:00 – 2:00.

brewsky’s food & spirits, two omaha locations 402-614-2739 153rd & Q Sts.; 201-2739, 84th & Park Drive; Brewsky’s Food & Spirits opened its first restaurant/bar in Lincoln, NE in 1990. Brewsky’s now boasts six restaurants in Lincoln and Omaha. Our menu (created by Certified Executive Chef Ed Janousek) surprises people that are expecting the normal “bar food” found at most sports bars. The menu consists of steaks, burgers, chicken, wraps and about everything in between. We offer all the sports packages on our banks of TVs as well. The atmosphere created, the quality of the food served and the modest prices charged define Brewsky’s. We’ve been voted Best Sports Bar in Omaha for five consecutive years (Omaha Magazine). Come let us WOW you!

DJ’s Dugout Sports Bar 402-763-9974

1003 Capitol Avenue. Catch all of the action at 3 Omaha locations. Featuring burgers, sandwiches, wraps, salads, appetizers and an impressive drink menu along with HD TV’s and projectors and home to Blazin’ Piano’s, Omaha’s only dueling piano concept . 114th & Dodge, 10th & Capitol and 23th & Cornhusker in Bellevue. djsdugout.com

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The Original Whiskey Steak

Open Monday-Friday 11am-2pm Dinner nightly from 5pm

Thank you Omaha for voting us Best Family Restaurant!

Reservations Accepted (402) 391-7440

“Serving The Best Chicken in Town Since 1997”

13325 Millard Ave. • 402-891-9292

2121 S. 73 St. Just ½ block South of Doubletree

DroverRestaurant.com

HAND STRETCHED NEW YORK STYLE PIZZA THANKS FOR VOTING US #1 AGAIN

CALZONES · PASTA · SALADS · HOAGIES · APPETIZERS · BEER · WINE

For banquets, parties, and meetings call 330-1444. Full Service Mon.-Fri. Nights & Sat.-Sun. All Day Self-Service Lunch Mon.-Fri.

We deliver downtown!

www.ReadOnlineNow.com

dundee • 5021 Underwood Ave. PitchPizzeria.com 402-590-coal (2625) may/june  •  2012  

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EAT What You CRAVE! Open for lunch & dinner ( CLOSED MONDAYS )

Take-out & catering Pizzas shipped nationwide

Dundee Dell 402-553-4010 (Omaha)

( ORDER ONLINE )

45th & Leavenworth

OLD MARKET - 13th & Howard 7 Omaha Area Locations

402-556-6464

www.PepperJaxGrill.com

LaCasaPizzaria.net

5007 Underwood. 11 AM until 1 AM every day, MondaySunday. Famous for Fish n’ Chips since 1934. Single malt & scotch tastings open to the public four times a month. Private tastings also available. We serve food from 11 AM to Midnight Sunday through Thursday, and from 11AM to 12:45 AM Friday and Saturday. We also serve a fantastic Sunday brunch from 11AM–2 PM on Sundays. $

PepperJax Grill Multiple Locations

NOW FEATURING SUSHI & SASHIMI DINNERS Sukiyaki • Shrimp Tempura Teriyaki Steak • Cantonese Dinners • Family Style for Two or More • Intimate Tea Rooms Available • Reservations Preferred in Tea Rooms.

Try Our Famous Plus 20 Exciting Polynesian Cocktails and Delicious Cantonese Appetizers

Open 5pm Mon.- Sat. Closed Sun.

7215 BLONDO

397-5049

Omaha

MAI TAI LOUNGE OPEN

Thanks to our customers for voting us the “Best Burger in Omaha”

4:30 P.M.

PepperJax Grill is known for its famous award winning Philly Cheesesteak Sandwiches packed full of seasoned sirloin steak on an authentic Philadelphia hearth-baked roll. Grilled Steak, Chicken and Shrimp Gourmet Rice Bowls, Giant Wraps, and Fresh Salads are also very popular. PepperJax Grill has 7 Omaha locations, www. pepperjaxgrill.com.

Quaker Steak and Lube 712-322-0101 (Council Bluffs, IA)

3320 Mid America Dr. Council Bluffs, IA.”The Lube” serves over 70 million wings annually, has bottled sauces for retail sale and has won the title of “Best Wings USA” Mondays are kids eat free from 5 to 9pm and Tuesdays are all you can eat wings for $12.99 all day. The Metro’s only, Quaker Steak and Lube also offers great steaks, ribs and burgers. Live Music again this fall on Friday nights. www.quakersteakandlube.com.

Stella’s Bar and Grill “Serving World Famous Hamburgers since 1936”

106 Galvin Rd - Bellevue, NE 402-291-6088 Open Monday-Saturday, 11:00 am - 9:00 pm www.StellasBarAndGrill.com

OMAHA’S ORIGINAL STEAKHOUSE

Upstream Brewing Company two omaha locations

514 S 11th St. (402) 344-0200. Upstream features an extensive menu of new American pub fare including: appetizers and thin-crust pizzas, superb steaks featuring “Omaha Steaks”, fresh fish, pasta, salads, sandwiches and a great children’s menu. Fresh, handcrafted beer and root beer on tap. Extensive wine list. Call ahead for group reservations or to be placed on our waiting list. Visit our classic, upscale poolroom located on the second level.

Cafe L 402-201-3386

• Proudly serving visitor & locals for 89 years. • Less than 10 minutes from Downtown. • Featured in Midwest Living Best of the Midwest 2011. • Serving hand cut steaks, aged on premise and slow roasted prime rib with pride.

Best Of Omaha 6Years Running

4741 S 96th St. Cafe L offers dishes made from scratch and all natural ingredients. From the gravy made with onion, carrots and celery to the spice pork chili, you can tell these flavors didn't come from a box. Friday's feature smoked Duroc pork raised in Iowa, steroid and antibiotic free, this is the Black Angus of pork. Visit us online for daily specials www.cafe96andl.com

402-731-4774 27th & ‘L’ St., Kennedy Frwy, ‘L’ St. Exit 8 Minutes from Downtown Omaha.

WHERE GOOD FOOD AND GOOD SERVICE NEVER GO OUT OF STYLE.

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BBQ

Famous Dave’s Barbeque 402-829-1616 (Omaha)

Famous Dave’s has been voted Omaha’s favorite barbeque by Omaha Magazine’s readers and the Reader’s Choice. Real hickory smoked ribs, brisket, pork and a great selection made-from-scratch recipes. Open lunch and dinner 7 days a week. Six Omaha-Metro area locations: Bellevue–21st & Cornhusker, Benson–71st & Ames, Eagle Run–130th & Maple, Lakeside–173rd &Center, Millard–120th & L, and Council Bluffs by the MAC. Take out and catering available.

Locally Owned and Operated

Open 7 DayS a Week breakfaSt aLL Day LunCh 11aM - 2pM 120th & pacific (402) 932-5577

Lo Sole Mio Ristorante Italiano 402-345-5656 (Omaha)

3001 So. 32nd, Ave. Located in the middle of a neighborhood surrounded by charming homes. At the table everyone is greeted with homemade bread, a bowl of fresh tomatoes & basil, a bowl of oven roasted garlic cloves, special seasoned olive oil, & at night, a jug of Chianti! Large variety of pasta, chicken, veal, seafood, & even a delicious New York steak. Traditional dishes such as lasagna, tortellini, & eggplant parmigiana are also available. Lunch also offers panini, salads & one of the best pizza in town. Patio seating, full bar, & a great wine list complete this. No reservations, except for private rooms.

402.431.ZONE (9663) • 2056 N. 117th Ave.

The FreshesT seaFood in Town! 1218 S. 119th St. • (402) 827-4376 168th & Center (S.W. Corner) (402) 763-1860 1911 Leavenworth St. (402) 614-5544 aLL shUCKs LoCaTions are oPen For LUnCh & dinner 7 daYs a weeK

North Park Plaza Corner of 120th & Blondo

www.EatRedZoneBBQ.com or follow us on

Best Greek

Family Owned Since 1983

Catering ~ Party Room Available Homemade, Fresh Food ~ Always 3821 Center St. 402/346-1528

GreekIslandsOmaha.com

oFFering Fresh seaFood daiLY and weeKLY sPeCiaLs 1727 Leavenworth • (402) 345-5057 1218 so. 119th st. • (402) 827-4376

We’re creating something fresh. www.absolutelyfresh.com

www.ReadOnlineNow.com

• BBQ Nachos • Smoked Turkey • Smoked Chicken • Turkey Legs • & more...

Now Catering Wedding Receptions and Graduation Parties!

13th & Jackson. Nicola’s offers a distinctive, tempting menu of upscale Italian dishes, including Lobster Ravioli, Classic Carbonara & Mediterranean Lasagna in an alluring environment. Also enjoy an Extensive Wine List & Full Bar on our Outdoor Garden Patio while you dine. Nicola’s also offers Catering & Desserts To Go for your private party or business gathering.

220 South 31st Avenue # 3107. Enjoy Old World Italian with a New World Style at Portovino Ristorante, Midtown Crossing’s newest restaurant. Gather around Portovino’s large brick oven and enjoy classic, fresh Italian, including pastas, entrees, salads, sandwiches and pizzas. Featuring a bar stocked with Italian wines, liquors and beer, Portovino is the perfect place to relax and reconnect with friends and family over fantastic food. Buon appetite! www.portovinoomaha.com $$

CARRY-OUT • PARTY PACKS • CATERING • HOLIDAY PARTIES

• Beef Brisket • Pulled Pork • Famous Ribs • Sausage & Hot Links

Nicola’s 402-345-8466 (Omaha)

Portovino Ristorante 402-885-6800 (Omaha)

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mOUTHwATERING

ITALIAN

don carmelo’s 2 locations (Omaha)

Tradition–Excellence–Value! Two locations: Rockbrook Village (402-933-3190) and 204th & Dodge (402-2899800) Omaha’s First and Finest NY Style Pizza, Stromboli, Calzone, Oven-Toasted Hoagies, Philly Cheese Steaks, Pasta, Salads, Beer & Wine. We also feature take-out and delivery and can cater your special event large or small. Stop in for daily lunch specials 11am -2 pm!

nicolasintheoldmarket.com

Since 1979

RED ZONE BBQ 402.431.ZONE (OMAHA)

2056 N. 117th Ave. We are open Sun-Thurs: 11-9 and Fri & Sat's 11-10pm. We are offer 6 smoked meats as well as "HUGE" Turkey Legs and Big Ribs. We also offer 14 different homemade sides- everything from cheesy potatoes to apple cobbler to roasted red potatoes to mac&cheese We have catered for up to 750 people. Let us help you with your catering needs for the office and holiday parties as well. Check out our website at www.eatredzonebbq. com or find us Facebook as well.

402.345.8466 13th & Jackson St

Wave Bistro Asian Asian Fusion Fusion Cuisine Cuisine

402-496-8812 4002 N. 144th St.

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5013 Underwood

Omaha, NE 68132

402.932.7778

agaveomaha.com

Biaggi's 402-965-9800 (Omaha)

13655 California Street. Biaggi's is a casual Italian restaurant offering an extensive selection of pastas, soups & salads, pizza, seafood, steaks and desserts. Enjoy large portions of affordably-priced menu selections prepared with the freshest ingredients available. Our private event room and wine room are perfect for making any gathering an event to remember.

Pasta Amore 402-391-2585 (Omaha)

mon-sat 11am to 1am/12am bar+kitchen sun 5pm-1am/12am bar+kitchen

REMARKABLE HOSPITALITY. INCREDIBLE CUISINE. LOCAL PASSION.

108th & West Center road (Rockbrook Village). Pastas are made fresh daily, including tortellini, fettuccine and capellini. Daily specials and menu items include a variety of fresh seafood and regional Italian dishes, such as Linguini Amore and Calamari Steak, Penne Florentine, Gnocchi, Spaghetti Puttanesca and Osso Bucco. Filet mignon also offered for those who appreciate nationally renowned Nebraska beef. To complement your dining experience, the restaurant offers a full bar and extensive wine list. Be sure to leave room for homemade desserts, like the tiramisu and cannolis. Lunch: 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Dinner: 4:30 p.m. Reservations recommended. AE-MC-V. $$

Zio’s Pizzeria Several Omaha Locations

Three locations: 7834 Dodge St. (402-391-1881), 12997 W. Center Rd. (402-330-1444), and 1109 Howard St. in the Old Market (402-344-2222). DELIVERY, DINE-IN, and CARRY-OUT. Serving New York style pizza by slice or whole pies, calzones, hoagies, pastas, salads and garlic breads. Zio’s pies are hand-stretched and baked in oldworld ovens. Zio’s offers 35 of the freshest toppings. Taste the freshest pizza at Zio’s. Family dining – open seven days a week. Lunch special and beer and wine available. $

ZURLO'S BISTRO ITALIANO 402-884-9500

P R I VAT E D I N I N G A C C O M M O D AT I O N S F O R U P T O 7 0 L U N C H & D I N N E R • H A P P Y H O U R • L I V E M U S I C N I G H T LY HAND-CUT AGED STEAKS • FRESH SEAFOOD

13110 Birch Dr, Ste 100 (132nd & Maple) Innovative Italian cuisine courtesy of Chef Enzo Zurlo is an Omaha treasure not to be missed. Friendly staff serves everything from hot brick oven pizzas to sumptuous pasta dishes to homemade desserts. Live music, outdoor patio and a price point for every budget make the modern bistro a perfect place to relax with friends. www.zurlos.com

LIGHT & EASY

222 S. 15th Street, Omaha, NE 68102 r e s e r va t i o n s 402.342.0077 sullivans.omaha@dfrg.com w w w . s u l l i va n s s t e a k h o u s e . c o m

O’Connor’s Irish Pub & Grille 402-934-9790 (Omaha)

1217 Howard St. Comfortable, relaxing atmosphere. Great before and after games. O’Connor’s offers pub style food: burgers, reubens, daily specials and homemade soups. The pub offers all the traditional Irish favorite libations: Guinness, Harp and Irish whiskey. Grill hours: Mon.-Thu. 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Fri.-Sat. 11 a.m.-10 p.m. $

Agave

ind

Family Owned & Operated Authentic Italian Cuisine Party Rooms Available Carry Out Available

Serving Lunch & Dinner

Mon-Sat

and be sure to

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3001 S. 32nd Ave • Omaha, NE 402-345-5656

MEXICAN

5013 Underwood Ave. Omaha NE 68132. Located in the heart of Dundee, Agave is the newest venue to enjoy delectable, from scratch Mexican fare. Specializing in Latin American cuisine, Agave also offers bold flavors from various regions of the Yucatan and Caribbean Islands. With an eclectic menu from fish tacos to chile rellenos, guests will have no problem finding an entree to suit their palate. Agave also proudly offers a fully stocked bar with over 160 tequilas. Whether sipping a freshly hand-made mojito on the large outdoor patio or enjoying a blended cucumber margarita with

Legend (average price per entrée)

$1 to 10 - $, $10 to 20 - $$, $20 to 30 - $$$, $30 and over - $$$$

MC, V, A E, DC www.OmahaPublications.com


your meal, Agave offers happy hour specials daily. With a family-friendly atmosphere, we’re also happy to accommodate large parties in our cozy fiesta room. Open 7 days a week for lunch and dinner.

Speciality Cakes & Cupcakes Fruit-Filled • Vegan Sugar-Free • Gluten-Free

Fernando’s Two Omaha Locations

Prime Steak Fine Wine Premium Service

Two locations: 7555 Pacific St. (402-339-8006), 380 N. 114th St. (402-330-5707). Featuring Sonoran-style cooking made fresh daily. Catering and party rooms also available. Hours: Mon.-Thu. 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Fri.-Sat. 11 a.m.-11 p.m.; Sun. 4 p.m.-9 p.m. AE-MC-V. $

Mt. Fuji Inn 402-397-5049 (Omaha)

Asian

7215 Blondo St. For Japanese dining in the traditional atmosphere, take time to visit Mt. Fuji Inn. Specialties include fresh Sushi and Sashimi, Sukiyaki and Shrimp Tempura. Also featuring Cantonese Chinese dinners and appetizers. Dining in individual tea rooms is available by reservation. Enjoy one’s favorite beverages in the Mai Tai Lounge. Open Mon.-Sat. @ 4:30p.m. Dining room open Mon-Sat 5p.m. Closed Sun. & holidays. AE-MC-V. $$

CUPCAKE ISLAND

1314 S. 119th St • 402-334-6800 www.CupcakeIsland.com

Sonoran Style Cooking Made Fresh Daily. Wave Bistro asian fusion cuisine 402-496-8812 (Omaha)

4002 N 144th St (One Blk N. of Maple St&West Side of 144th St) Step into a world where green waves suspend in the air, an intimate interior as mouth watering aromas waft thru the air. Wave Bistro presents the best Asian Cuisine in Omaha with a European twist. One of a kind dishes from scratch such as Cashew Crusted Salmon to Tea Smoked Duck-a balance between contemporary & traditional food. Full service bar. Mon-Thurs 11:00AM-9:00PM,Fri-Sat 11:00AM-10:00PM. All Credit Cards Accepted.

Catering and Party Rooms Also Available. 7555 Pacific St. 399–8006 380 N.114 St. 330–5707 Omaha, Nebraska

Omaha’s Only Authentic German Restaurant Locally Owned Since 1976

SEAFOOD

13665 California Street Omaha, Nebraska 402.445.4380 www.mahoganyprime.com Private party rooms available for 6 to 40 people.

Charlie’s on the Lake (Omaha)

144th and F streets (402-894-9411). Charlie’s is the only fresh-fish daily seafood restaurant in Omaha. Featuring a relaxed, yet contemporary atmosphere that is fun for all ages. Besides fresh seafood, Charlie’s is the home of the James Bond style martini, shaken not stirred, in over 20 varieties, in addition to over 60 wines. Lunch: Mon.-Fri. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Dinner: Mon.-Thu. 4:30 p.m.-10 p.m.; Fri.-Sat. 4:30 p.m.-11 p.m.; Sun. 4:30 p.m.-9 p.m. $

Authentic German Dining Sauerbraten, Schnitzel, Pan-Fried Chicken, Full Bakery, German Beer Call for custom graduation & wedding cakes

5180 Leavenworth 402-553-6774 www.gerdasgermanrestaurant.com 10 minutes from downtown Omaha www.ReadOnlineNow.com

Top 100 Restaurants in America

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shucks fish house & oyster bar 402-827-4376 (S. 119 St.) 402-763-1860 (168th & Center)

1218 S. 119th St, and also in the Shops of Legacy, SW corner of 168th & Center (just north of Lifetime Fitness). Open 7 days a week. Have you ever been to a fish shack on the coast? You’ll like this! Open 7 days a week. Shrimp or Oyster Po’ Boys, Fried Clam Strips, Shrimp, Walleye, Calamari and Oysters (all VERY lightly breaded). Plus Crab Cakes, Clam Chowder, Gumbo, Salads and Daily Fresh Fish Specials. Featuring a large variety of Oysters on the Half Shell, shucked right in front of you. Killer Happy Hour 2-6, every day.

SPECIAL DINING

RED MANGO name, design and related marks are trade of Red Mango, Inc. © 2011 Red Mango, Inc. All rights reserved.

Cupcake Island 402.334.6800

1314 S. 119th St. For six years, Cupcake Island has been delightfully serving Omaha brides with their wedding cakes and cupcakes.  They offer a variety of cake choices, including but not limited to:  vegan, gluten-free, and sugar-free, in additional to traditional wedding cake flavors. Monday-Friday 8-5 and Saturday 8-4.

Gerda’s German Restaurant & Bakery 402-553-6774 (Omaha)

Over 750 Single Malts 500 Kinds of Liquor • 230 Kinds of Beer Omaha’s Best Fish & Chips

Best of omaha 2012

5007 Underwood • Omaha, NE 68132 • (402) 553-9501 • www.dundeedell.com

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Pasta Amore

Owned & Operated by the Cascio Family for 65 years

a classic spot

LUNCH: Mon.-Fri.: 11a.m.-2p.m.

3821 Center St. Greek cuisine with specials every day at reasonable prices. Well known for our Gyro sandwiches and salads. We do catering and can accommodate a party for 65 guests. Carryout and delivery available. Mon.-Thu. 11 a.m.-9 p.m.; Fri.-Sat. 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sun. 11 a.m.-8 p.m. AE-DC-MC-V. $

Horsemen’s Park 402-731-2900 (Omaha)

Horsemen’s Park located at 6303 Q Street. Happy Hour Mon-Wed from 5-9 p.m.–$1 pints, $1.75 domestic bottles and $2 well drinks. Tuesday–25¢ wings from 3-8 p.m. Wednesday–$5.95 Steak Night after 5:00 p.m. Thursday–75¢ tacos and $1.75 margaritas after 5:00 p.m. Friday – $7.95 Prime Rib Dinner after 5:00 p.m. Daily specials 7 days a week. Open daily at 10:00 a.m. Check out our website at www.horsemenspark.com.

10922 Elm St. Rockbrook Village. A casual restaurant in a ralaxed atmosphere. Lunch; Chicken Tikki Naan with Chutney; Tandoori Chicken & Muligatanny soup. Dinner entrees include fresh vegetables dishes, grilled colorado lamb sirloin, Sushi grade Ahi, Tandoori marinated grilled salmon, Tandoor grilled beef tenderloin, to name a few. Wide selection of wines & liquor, on site brewed beer. Lunch: Thurs. & Fr. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Dinner: Sun.-Thurs. 5 p.m.-9:30 p.m.; Fri & Sat. 5p.m.-10:30 p.m.

Katie's Greek Restaurant 402.558.5623

DINNER: Mon.-Sat.: 4:30p.m-Close Private Party Rooms Business Luncheons Catering

  may/june  •  2012

Greek Islands 402-346-1528 (Omaha)

Jaipur Brewing Company 402-392-7331 (OMAHA)

Now Serving Pizza!

Rockbrook Village • (108th & Center) (402) 391-2585 • Fax: 391-0910 www.pastaamore.net

5188 Leavenworth St. Omaha’s only Authentic German Restaurant. A little piece of Germany in Omaha. Gerda herself makes homemade spaetzle, schnitzels and rouladen. Fresh made soups, red cabbage, sauerkraut and dumplings are a few other treats. Stay for dessert of black forest cake or grab fresh bakery for breakfast on your way out. Open Monday-Tuesday 6 a.m.-3 p.m. and Wednesday-Saturday 6 a.m.-9 p.m.

1620 S. 10th 1 mile south of CenturyLink Center 345-8313 • www.casciossteakhouse.com

119 S 40th St. Katies Greek Restaurant & Taverna is a family run establishment and we value giving great food at a great price. Omaha agrees! Want to eat light? Try our fine vegetarian cuisine! Have a heartier appetite? How about a nice, juicy souvlakia! If you have a diner who might not feel adventurous enough for Greek food, we also have a nice selection of American items as well. We also have a full bar with all your favorites, including our specialty martinis. We can cater private parties hold

www.OmahaPublications.com


it at your location or at ours! Give us a call or find us on facebook for special offers.

Nosh Wine Lounge 402-614-2121

1006 Dodge Street. A diverse boutique wine list from around the world, culinary delights using locally grown organic produce and impressive drink menu. Nosh is the place for friends to gather, relax and celebrate good times. Located in The Capitol District in Downtown Omaha. noshwine.com

Red Mango (402) 933-8815 (13th & Cuming) (402) 884-3795 (103rd & Pacific) (402) 334-4774 (168th & Center)

Red Mango combines its refreshingly tangy frozen yogurt with fresh and exciting toppings to create a nutritious dessert that can be enjoyed guilt free all day. Red Mango Frozen yogurt is all-natural, nonfat, gluten-free, and kosher most importantly it taste great! Locations at 13th & Cuming, 103rd & Pacific and 168th & W. Center.

Race cars and Motorcycles hanging from the ceiling! Corvettes in the dining room! Over 30 T.V.s to watch your favorite games. We have a full menu with Ribs, Salads, Burgers, Sandwiches and of course Steak! We feature Jumbo size Chicken Wings with 18 different types of Award-Winning sauces. Our Atomic hot sauce is so hot that you have to sign a waiver to eat them!

3320 Mid America Drive • Council Bluffs, IA 51501 712.322.0101 • www.quakersteakandlube.com

Happy Hour Lunch or Dinner Sunday Brunch 10a-2p Business Catering

TED & WALLY’S ICE CREAM 402-341-5827

Thursday Night Live Music

Come experience the true taste of homemade ice cream at 12th & Jackson in the Old Market. Since 1986, we’ve created gourmet ice cream flavors in small batches using rock salt & ice. We offer your favorites plus unique flavors like Margarita, Green Tea, Guinness, and French Toast. Special orders available.

STEAKHOUSES

Always a Large Selection of Fresh Fish

801 Chopouse at the Paxton 402-341-1222

1403 Farnam St. Designed with a 1920’s era New York Chophouse in mind, 801 is the epitome of elegance. You will not forget the crisp white tablecloth fine dining experience. From their USDA prime grade beef and jetfresh seafood from all over the world, 801 Chophouse is truly the best Omaha has to offer. Open 7 nights a week.

4150 SOUTH 144TH STREET • OMAHA • 894-9411

Greek and American Cuisine Homemade Greek Pastries Takeout & Catering Beer-Wine-Cocktails

119 S 40th St • Omaha, NE (40th & Dodge) 402-558-5623 • KatiesGreek.com Visit us at TD Ameritrade Park Omaha & CenturyLink Center Omaha www.ReadOnlineNow.com

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Cascio’s Steak House 402-345-8313

rotellasbakery.com

Since 1946, Cascio’s Steak House has been Omaha’s #1 steakhouse. The Cascio family established high standards of top quality food which is carefully prepared and promptly served by the friendly staff. Minutes south of the old market. The perfect place to hold your entire banquet and party needs Cascio’s has 7 party rooms handling groups of 10-400 people. www.casciossteakhouse.com

The Drover 402-391-7440

2121 S. 73rd Street (just 1/2 block of Doubletree) Famous for the original Whiskey Steak. Truly a one of a kind Midwestern experience. Excellent food, wine, service and value. Rare……..and very well done. Reservations accepted. Lunch: Mon–Fri 11am – 2pm. Cocktail Hour 3-6pm Dinner nightly at 5pm. Reservations accepted. AE,Dc-MC-V $$$

Founder Alessandro Rotella holding his grandson Louis Rotella Jr. in front of their first bakery on 21st & Pierce Street.

As my father would proudly say, “We wish you the very best from the Rotella family”.

Johnny’s Café – Since 1922 402-731-4774 (Omaha)

27th and L streets. Years of quality dining and hospitality make Johnny’s Café a restaurant to remember. Serving only the finest corn-fed beef the Midwest has to offer. Aged steaks and prime rib are the specialties, with homemade bread and pies to complete one’s meal. An excellent wine list adds to the enjoyment at one of Omaha’s original restaurants. Hours: Mon.-Sat. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.-9:30 p.m. AE-MC-V. $$

Mahogany Prime Steakhouse 402.445.4380

13665 California St. This is a restaurant where steak is the star, using custom aged U.S. Prime Midwestern Beef known for its excellence in marbling, texture, and flavor. We serve it sizzling on a heated plate so that it stays hot throughout your meal. With amazing service in a less intimidating fine dining atmosphere.

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1/31/12 8:45 AM


PREMIUM HOMEMADE ICE CREAM

Omaha Prime 402-341-7040 (Omaha)

415 S. 11th St. (Old Market). Only restaurant featuring complete Prime beef. Open six days a week, Mon.-Sat. 5 p.m.-close. $$-$$$

Find Us On Facebook

1120 Jackson Street (402) 341-5827 tedandwallys.com

5 Years In A Row

tripadvisor.com reviews

“The artichoke dip is a must have.” “The food is out of this world and the house-brewed root beer is the best.” Piccolo’s Restaurant 402-342-9038 (Omaha)

2202 S. 20th St. One of Omaha’s finest traditions, where quality steaks are served at low prices. Especially designed for a family outing or a business social. The specialty is tasty prime rib, served for the last 60 years under the crystal ball. Daily lunches: Mon.-Fri. 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Dinner: Mon.-Thu. 5 p.m.-10 p.m.; Fri.-Sat. 4:30 p.m.110:30 p.m. Daily and night specials.

O’Connor’s Irish Pub 1217 Howard St. • Omaha, NE 68102 402-934-9790

Thank You Omaha for Voting Us #1 Chinese Dining

Formerly China Road

Sullivan’s Steakhouse 342-0077 (Omaha)

2222 S. 15th St. Sullivan’s is a vibrant neighborhood steakhouse featuring hand-cut steaks, fresh seafood and an award-winning wine list – all served up with unparalleled hospitality. Sullivan’s is located just blocks away from Omaha’s Old Market District. The restaurant features a lively bar, intimate dining room and open patio where guests can enjoy live jazz nightly. The beautiful wine cellar is the perfect setting for private dinners and business presentations.

“The New York strip was awesome and cooked to perfection!” “Best brewery we’ve experienced.”

“I got the shrimp white pizza. I could have licked the plate it was so good!”

681 North 132nd Street Omaha, NE 68154-4031 (402) 431-0066 silkroadomaha.com

2202 South 20th Street – Omaha

Family Restaurant • Fine Steaks Chicken • Seafood Party Rooms Available

See our full menu, happy hours and more at

upstreambrewing.com

Legend (average price per entrée)

$1 to 10 - $, $10 to 20 - $$, $20 to 30 - $$$, $30 and over - $$$$

MC, V, A E, DC www.ReadOnlineNow.com

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Did You Know... Did You Know...

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Visit www.LiveGreenThinkBlue.com for all your energy saving rebates and to calculate your carbon footprint. Visit www.LiveGreenThinkBlue.com for all your energy saving rebates and to calculate your carbon footprint.


Thanks Omaha!

#1 - Cosmetic Surgeon Joel Schlessinger, M.D.

Winners Circle - Day Spa

#1 - Dermatologist

LovelySkin Spa

Joel Schlessinger, M.D.

(formerly Aesthetica Day Spa)

Joel Schlessinger, M.D. specializes in general dermatology and cosmetic surgery services with solution-oriented and patient-focused medical care. Whether your needs are medical or cosmetic, Dr. Schlessinger has the expertise and knowledge to find a treatment plan for you. Our newest entrant to the Best of Omaha, LovelySkin Spa, offers customized skin care treatments such as facials, peels, laser hair removal and microdermabrasion - all under the direction of Dr. Schlessinger and a staff of 5 full-time estheticians. LovelySkin.com and LovelySkin flagship store offer premiere and physician-only skin care and cosmetic products from over 200 brands, including specialty and hard-to-find niche products with a medical benefit.

2802 Oak View Drive, Omaha, NE 68144 2929 Oak View Drive, Omaha, NE 68144 402-334-1126 402-697-6565 CustomerCare@LovelySkin.com


May/June 2012 Omaha Magazine