Page 1

SKYDIVING WITH FAMILY // POSTMODERN OREGON TRAIL // THE “BEERMUDA TRIANGLE” // SANDHILL CRANES

MAY/JUNE 2018

The Travel

ADV ENT URE

&

I S S U E


18725 Northern Hills Dr, Bennington

$700,000

5.48 acre lot with 5 BR, 6 BA home w/ wrap around front porch. New carpet and fresh interior/exterior paint. extensive built ins, Finished walk out basement storm shelter. Horses allowed.

11408 S 122 St, Papillion

$623,950

Introducing Birchwood Homes Luxurious “Hadley Estate” 2 story plan featuring 4 bedroom, 4 bath, extra large executive 3 car, and master suite sitting room. Gorgeous!

Susan Hancock • 402-215-7700

1133 Ponderosa Dr, Fremont

$610,000

Country living with all the amenities. Stunning four bedroom, four and 1/2 bath, two full kitchens, two fireplaces, open living spaces for entertaining, Geo thermal heating and cooling.

1403 N 188 St, Elkhorn

$649,000

West facing 2 story on oversized treed lot. 5 bedrooms on 2nd floor! Chef’s kitchen, large deck overlooking outdoor fireplace. Media room, bar, and Designer Series Pella windows throughout. 4 car garage.

Jayne Smith • 402-203-5847

66 Shaker Place, Valley

$610,000

Completely remodeled in 2014. 5 bedroom, 4 bathrooms, in Ginger Cove Subdivision.

Walt Slobotski • 402-709-1244

Mike Bennett • 402-719-1300

$595,000

A lush modern farmhouse from H3 Custom Homes. Features include a stunning great room with 10-ft ceilings, massive kitchen, and 2 owner entries. Note—photos are from previous build and may not reflect final project.

The Jacobsen Group • 402-672-7701

3222 N 135 St, Omaha

$650,000

Custom built in 2014 with every detail carefully selected. 2 story stone fireplace and granite kitchen. Master BR suite on the 2nd floor connects to loft. Main flr BR w/ Murphy Bed. 2 BR suites in the walk out LL.

Mary Robson Rensch • 402-690-6279

Shari Thomas • 402-658-9927

22114 Cedar Cir, Elkhorn

1212 S 200 Ave, Omaha

$550,000

980 Cty Road W-S-48, Fremont

$579,000

This fantastic lake home is totally remodeled and updated. A huge master closet, barn doors, quartz, and granite. 3 family room areas, covered patio, gourmet kitchen and a wet bar.

Kori Krause • 402-679-0007

21874 Martha St, Omaha

10707 S 174 Ave, Omaha

$559,900

Royal Homes walkout ranch on private wooded lot. 10 & 11 ft ceilings, Bosch appliances, Quartz countertops, covered deck, 4 bedrooms & flex room. Certified high-performance home. Interior photos are of similar floor plan.

John Greguska • 402-612-0594

$529,900

3334 S 188 Ave, Omaha

$500,000

Stunning Champions Run home located on the 5th Tee Box. Large 1.5 story that is in meticulous condition. Downstairs has a full kitchen, fireplace, large exercise room and plenty of storage.

New modern farmhouse 1.5 story plan by TruVision Custom Homes. Main floor master w/free standing soaker tub & walk-in shower. Three large bdrms on upper level w/direct bath access. Lots of sq ft in the unfinished bsmt.

With no back neighbors, this residence showcases the value of peaceful living yet is conveniently close to shops and schools. 2 fireplaces, whole home audio, zoned HVAC, and many upgrades. Finished spacious LL.

Shari Thomas • 402-658-9927

Julie Arp • 402-250-5850

The Lichter Team • 402-680-2875

V I R T U A L TO U R S A N D M O R E AT NPDODGE.COM


EVENTS MADE EASY B Y A M E R I S TA R

Hold your next event at Ameristar and you can bet on big success—and big fun. We’ll help you put together the perfect plan and execute your event with excellence in mind. With over 6,000 square feet of meeting space, we are ready to accommodate groups from 10 to 300. So whether you’re planning an intimate gathering or a large business conference, rest assured we’ll take care of all the details so you can relax and enjoy all the amenities we have to offer you and your guests.

Call 712.396.3120 to start planning with our dedicated specialists.

2200 RIVER ROAD COUNCIL BLUFFS, IOWA 712.328.8888 | AMERISTAR.COM Must be at least 21 and a mychoice® member. Offer not valid for persons on a Disassociated Patrons, Voluntary Exclusion or Self Exclusion List in jurisdictions which Pinnacle Entertainment operates or who have been otherwise excluded from the participating property. Terms subject to change. Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-BETS OFF. ©2018 Pinnacle Entertainment, Inc. All rights reserved.


TAB L E of CON T E N T S THE USUAL SUSPECTS 004 From the Editor 006 Between the Lines 009 Calendar of Events 074 History

Okoboji Attracts Generations of Omahans

105 Obviously Omaha

The Oracle of Omaha’s Edible Investments

129 Explore! 133 Instagram 134 Not Funny

Choose Your Own Adventure

A R T S + C U LT U R E 020 Music

Miwi La Lupa

024 Art

Ed Ruscha

042

F E AT U R E S

034 038 042 066 // 2 //

028 Theater

Shelterbelt and SNAP!

030 Sculpture

Benjamin Victor

PE O P L E 052 Motorsport Erik Falk

056 Gen O

Katie Werkmeister

SKYDIVING WITH FAMILY If At First You Don’t Succeed, Don’t Go Skydiving

060 Profile

Jon Schuetz

062 Fashion

RUNNING THROUGH PAIN AND RECOVERY Ultramarathoner Kaci Lickteig

FIVE NATIONAL PARKS

On the Postmodern Oregon Trail from Omaha to the Pacific Northwest

A GATHERING OF WATER & CRANES How Sandhill Cranes Unite Residents & Travelers Along Migratory Routes Plus: Book Review, The River Beneath the Sky on page 72

MAY/JUNE 2018

Nick Moore

064 Animal Lover

Heather Ingraham

GIVING 082 Feature

Nebraska National Guard in Hurricanes Harvey & Maria

084 Giving Calendar


AUGMENTED REALITY 60PLUS IN OMAHA 089 60Plus Opener

078 Adventure

090 Active Living

081 City Market

The Beermuda Bicycle Tour

On Your Digital Device

SPECIAL SECTIONS

096 Passion

ABOUT THE COVER Last summer in the far northwest corner of Nebraska, an Omaha-based photographer (who goes by the handle @ONElapse on Instagram and Facebook) set out to capture a timelapse of sunset. This issue’s cover image was taken from the timelapse, which spanned several hours. It was windy and raining lightly, but no sign of inclement weather can be seen in this frame. Look for the photographer, accompanied by his dog, setting up another camera along the ridge in the vicinity of Fort Robinson.

Wanderings of a Wordsmith

098 Faith

Barbara Entz’ Missionary Path

100 Nostalgia

Guest-Starring at Omaha’s First Drive-In

Watch videos and view photo galleries of select stories from this issue of Omaha Magazine for FREE.

DINING 106 Feature

Get Yer Hot Dogs Here!

110 Profile

Floridalma Herrera

112 Review

Yamato Sushi Train & Grill

0

100

200

300

400

500

497 trees have been reforested

due to the printing of our last round of publications.

Learn more at printreleaf.com

117 Dining Guide

Step Download the FREE LayAR App from App Store or Google Play

Step SCAN PAGE 2

with the LayAR app

112

Step ENJOY YOUR EXPERIENCE Watch, click, shop, explore!


FROM THE EDITOR // LETTER BY DOUG MEIGS, EXECUTIVE EDITOR

ART, TRAVEL, AND ADVENTURE LIKE ANY GOOD book (or, ahem, magazine), art has the power to transcend space and time.

Artworks have been transporting viewers to far-off places and eras since the earliest days of cave paintings, through the Renaissance masters, and into the present. The new issue of Omaha Magazine also aspires to take readers on exciting journeys from the comfort of wherever they may be reading. A travel/adventure theme carries throughout the main feature well of the magazine’s city* edition. Story subjects include a local family of skydivers, the postmodern Oregon Trail, and Nebraska’s “Beermuda Triangle” (by bicycle), along with adventure-seeker profiles ranging from a scuba-diving quadriplegic to a tractor puller and more. With adventure and travel in mind, we thought it would be appropriate to partner with Joslyn Art Museum for a magazine launch party that connects the articles in our (non-themed) A+C and Dining departments with the rest of the city edition’s adventure/travel stories. We scheduled the issue’s magazine launch (Monday, April 30) to correspond with the final week of Word/Play, Joslyn’s exhibition of Ed Ruscha’s artwork. Ruscha was born in Omaha, and this issue of Omaha Magazine features his profile. With so much other great art in the permanent collection of Joslyn, we could not pass this opportunity to connect the new issue’s launch with the museum’s abundant collection of adventure/travelinspired artworks. Joslyn staff came up with a list of 10 fun scavenger hunt questions that not only

touch upon themes of travel and adventure, but also require actual exploring of the museum to come up with answers. “Remember that general admission to Joslyn Art Museum is always free!” says Amy Rummel, director of marketing and public relations at Joslyn. “All of the answers can be found in our permanent collection galleries, so come hunt during any of our regular public hours at no cost.” The first three people who successfully complete the scavenger hunt (posted to the website surveymonkey.com) will receive prizes provided by Omaha Magazine advertisers. 

Joslyn Museum Scavenger Hunt Questions 1. Horses are a great way to navigate difficult terrain. Travel to the gallery featuring Asian art. How many horses are depicted in that gallery? 2. Although not boots, the four items in this case were made for walkin’. Which two distinct types of footwear— one traditional, one modern—are shown together in the case? [Hint: the work of Native American artists] 3. This contemporary Native American work depicts three modes of transportation in one sculpture. What are they? 4. Sometimes travel is plagued by stormy weather. What is the title of the painting in Joslyn’s permanent collection that depicts such a situation, specifically at the conclusion of a trip featuring illegal activity? [Hint: European] 5. To paint one of the works displayed in Joslyn’s permanent collection galleries, French Impressionist artist Claude Monet traveled to a coastal Italian village. What was this village called?

*Note: the hotel edition of Omaha Magazine has a different cover, and it does not include all of the editorial content included in the magazine’s full city edition.

MAY/JUNE MAGAZINE LAUNCH PARTY Although Joslyn is normally closed on Mondays, the museum is opening specially for Omaha Magazine’s May/June launch party. Joslyn’s Memorial Building galleries will remain closed for the event and will reopen during normal museum hours. Featuring: Free hot dogs, musical performances (including one by Miwi La Lupa, profiled in this issue), admission to Joslyn’s Pavilion galleries of modern and contemporary art, and free admission to the ticketed exhibition Word/Play: Prints, Photographs, and Paintings by Ed Ruscha (normally $10 for adults). Admission: Free Where: Joslyn Art Museum, 2200 Dodge St. When: Monday, April 30 (5-7 p.m.) RSVP: localstubs.com

MAY/JUNE

// 4 //

2018

6. A canoe is a means of adventurous water travel. How many canoes are pictured in Joslyn’s permanent collection galleries? [Hint: Art of the American West galleries 7–9] 7. Many a family travel adventure ends at this awe-inspiring geological site. What is it, and who painted it? [Hint: an artist-explorer of the American West] 8. Two men find themselves traveling through one of America’s most iconic intersections/entertainment districts/destinations. Name it. 9. The crew of the Starship Enterprise spent much of their time traveling here. Name the work and the artist. [Hint: this painter was no drip] 10. A common form of transportation that settlers used to go west was the covered wagon. How many family members are riding in Joslyn’s large covered wagon? [Hint: venture outdoors] BONUS: Joslyn is home to a world-renowned collection of work by a young Swiss artist who traveled the upper Missouri with a German explorer. Name this duo.


MAY // JUNE 2018 VOLUME 36 // ISSUE 2

EDITORIAL Executive Editor

DOUG MEIGS

Managing Editor

DAISY HUTZELL-RODMAN Associate Editor

TARA SPENCER

ELEGANCE

Editorial Assistants

WILL PATTERSON · LINDSAY WILSON Editorial Interns

REIMAGINED

CLAIRE BROMM · MATTHEW BOGSETH Contributing Writers

RONALD AHRENS · LEO ADAM BIGA · RYAN BORCHERS NATALIE SCHNEIDER BROOKS · TAMSEN BUTLER COLE EPLEY · MICHELE FAN · ROD HOWE · GREG JERRETT JOSEFINA LOZA · LISA LUKECART · SEAN MCCARTHY CAROL CRISSEY NIGRELLI · LINDA PERSIGEHL DOREEN PFOST · NIZ PROSKOCIL · KIM REINER KARA SCHWEISS · JARED SPENCE · OTIS TWELVE SARAH WENGERT

CREATIVE Creative Director

MATT WIECZOREK Senior Graphic Designer

DEREK JOY

Graphic Designer II

MADY BESCH

Graphic Designer I

KATIUSKA NUÑEZ Contributing Photographers

KEITH BINDER · COLIN CONCES SCOTT DRICKEY · SARAH LEMKE Contributing Videographers

SHOPPING HOURS Monday-Friday 10 am-8 pm | Saturday 10 am-7 pm | Sunday 12 pm-5 pm Individual store hours may vary

STORES Ann Taylor | Anthropologie | Borsheims | Christian Nobel Furs Evereve | Francesca’s Collections | Garbo’s Salon & Spa Learning Express Toys | LOFT | Parsow’s Fashions

Pottery Barn | Pottery Barn Kids | Rhylan Lang | Tilly White House Black Market | Williams-Sonoma

DINING Bonefish Grill | Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar Paradise Bakery & Café

RegencyCourtOmaha.com

CHRISTOPHER MARSHALL · MARK MCGAUGH JEREMY WADE RODMAN · JOE PANKOWSKI

SALES DEPARTMENT Executive Vice President Sales & Marketing

GIL COHEN

Senior Branding Specialist

MARY HIATT

Senior Sales Executive & 60PLUS in Omaha Contributing Editor

GWEN LEMKE

Publisher’s Assistant & OmahaHome Contributing Editor

SANDY MATSON

Senior Sales Coordinator

ALICIA HOLLINS

Branding Specialist

GEORGE IDELMAN Local Stubs Ticketing Representative and Branding Specialist

JOSHUA PETERSON

Digital Sales Manager

JILLIAN DUNN Sales Assistants

DAWN DENNIS · SOPHIA GALARDI · SHERRY LORENCE

OPERATIONS Accountant

HOLLEY GARCIA-CRUZ Distribution Manager

MIKE BREWER

EXECUTIVE Executive Publisher

TODD LEMKE Vice President

GREG BRUNS Associate Publisher

BILL SITZMANN Chief Operating Officer

TYLER LEMKE

For Advertising & Subscription Information:

A role-playing exhibit adventure! ON DISPLAY NOW – JULY 29 DURHAMMUSEUM.ORG

402-444-5071 | 801 S. 10TH ST, OMAHA

402.884.2000

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 5 //


Between A LOOK AT FOUR OMAHA MAGAZINE TEAM MEMBERS MATT BOGSETH - Editorial Intern Matt Bogseth is a student of English with a concentration in American literature at the University of Nebraska-Omaha. In his free time, he likes to read his favorite authors and write his own fictional stories. His other interests include running, playing with his nieces and nephews, and playing Beatles and Bob Dylan songs on the piano. He is looking forward to pursuing a master’s degree in English in the fall while also teaching freshman composition as part of UNO’s teaching assistantship program. He is still uncertain as to what professional path he will follow, but he hopes it will lead to creativity and fulfillment.

JILLIAN DUNN - Digital Sales Manager Born and raised the youngest of five children in small-town North Dakota, Jillian Dunn became interested in the marketing/advertising field after winning a national poster contest (promoting national internet security) in third grade. As one of six kids in the nation who were selected winners, she flew to Washington, D.C., and received her award in the White House. The trip also inspired her love for travel. During her college years in Virginia, she took a gap year to live and work in New Zealand and has since traveled to Iceland, Sweden, Norway, Mexico, Canada, and driven across the U.S. twice. Other hobbies include playing violin and piano, camping, walking around the zoo, getting her knees up (her signature dance move) on a Friday night, and spending quality time with her family, friends, and boyfriend (who serves at Offutt Air Force Base).

JOE PANKOWSKI - Contributing Videographer Joe Pankowski is an artist and art teacher from Omaha. He received his BFA from the University of Nebraska-Omaha with an emphasis in intermedia, and his MFA in new media art from the University of Illinois-Chicago. From doodling on restaurant paper placemats when he was little to carrying a sketchbook wherever he went in college—even to parties—Pankowski has always been an artist. Drawing has been a way for Pankowski to share a narrative, originally on single sheets of paper. Eventually, experimentation with video and kinetic art introduced motion to his drawings. Pankowski’s been hooked ever since.

DOREEN PFOST - Contributing Writer Writer Doreen Pfost of Elroy, Wisconsin, lived for six years in Kearney, Nebraska, where she earned a master’s degree in English with a creative writing emphasis at the University of Nebraska-Kearney. While living in the Platte River valley, she immersed herself—figuratively and literally—in the river to learn about its ways, its wildlife, and its history. She wrote about her experiences in a book called This River Beneath the Sky: A Year on the Platte. Each spring since 2005, she has served as a volunteer tour guide on the Platte, where a half-million sandhill cranes stop over on their northward migration, attracting birdwatchers and nature lovers from around the world. Closer to home in Wisconsin, she sometimes takes a break from writing to lead a tour at Aldo Leopold’s shack and farm on the Wisconsin River. For fun, she still thinks nothing beats being on—or in—a river.

// 6 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


SECTION // NAMES

WE’RE ONLY AS BORING AS YOU ARE Find the fun. WeDontCoast.com/Events


7

14

21

C A L E N D A R 8

15

22

9

16

23

of

EVENTS

ART & MUSEUM EXHIBITS BFA & BASA THESIS AND SENIOR SHOWS

Through May 5 at UNO Criss Library and Weber Art Gallery, 6001 Dodge St. Thesis students in the art gallery and BASA graduating seniors from UNO showcase their work. Admission: free. 402-554-3206. —unomaha.edu

BEGINNING.BREAK.RAPID: KENJI FUJITA & BARBARA TAKENAGA

Through June 2 at Bemis Center, 742 S. 12th St. These artists use a variety of mediums including vinyl, paint, spray paint, gesso, paper, calcium carbonate, wood, plywood, and linen. Admission: free. 402-341-7130. —bemiscenter.org

WIDESPREAD FLOWERING

Through June 4 at Lauritzen Gardens, 100 Bancroft St. Motivated by the beauty and passage of time, space, and geometry of the world of nature, Ann Brugenhemke explores life and love through art. Admission: $10 adults, $5 children 6-12, free for garden members and children under 6. 402-346-4002. —lauritzengardens.org

June

WEDES

4

Through June 4 at Darger HQ, 1804 Vinton St. Artists Angela Simione and Sarah Rowe are inspired by traditional craft. Their work embodies illustrations of everyday objects as metaphors of self-identity, boundaries, and protection. Admission: free. 402-209-5554. —dargerhq.org

TUSKEEGEE AIRMEN: WHO CALLED NEBRASKA HOME

Through June 30 at Great Plains Black History Museum, 2221 N. 24th St. (Jewell Building). The exhibit will highlight photos, historical information, and artifacts about the Tuskeegee Airmen who called Nebraska home. Admission: free. 402-932-5554 —gpblackhistorymuseum.org

WEARABLE ART—KISS OF THE WOLF

May 3-6 at Anderson O’Brien Art, 1108 Jackson St. Artist Lori Bacigalupi explores different techniques in fabric design, such as screen process, natural dyeing, and mono-printing in wearable art. Admission: free. 402-884-0911. —aobfineart.com

WORD/PLAY: PRINTS, PHOTOGRAPHS, AND PAINTINGS BY ED RUSCHA

Through May 6 at Joslyn Art Museum, 2200 Dodge St. The first major exhibition featuring Ruscha in his home state of Nebraska, Word/Play brings together prints, photographs, and artist books, complemented by a selection of major paintings. Ruscha’s use of the written word is a signature element of his work. Tickets: $10 ($5 from 4-8 p.m. Thursdays), $5 students with valid ID, free to members and youths 17 and under. 402-342-3300. —joslyn.org

METAMORPHOSIS: WORKS BY SAYAKA GANZ AND AURORA ROBSON

Through May 13 at Lauritzen Gardens, 100 Bancroft St. This exhibit is constructed of found, recycled, and reused plastic objects. Equal parts artistic and educational, it will feature fine art accompanied by a message of environmental stewardship. Admission: $10 adults, $5 children 6-12, free for garden members and children under 6. 402-346-4002. —lauritzengardens.org

SICK TIME, SLEEPY TIME, CRIP TIME: AGAINST CAPITALISM’S TEMPORAL BULLYING

Through June 2 at Bemis Center, 742 S. 12th St. The artists in this exhibit examine how support for the body in states of illness and rest prompts us to re-imagine the world collectively. The exhibit aims to bring attention to how the body is articulated in capitalism and health-related discourse. Admission: free. 402-341-7130. —bemiscenter.org

AWAKENING

Starting May 4 at Omaha Artists’ Co-op, 405 S. 11th St. Enjoy works of art by Jasmine Greenwaldt, Alan Smith, and George Skuodas. Admission: free. 402-342-9617. —artistscoopomaha.com

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 9 //


OMAHA MAGAZINE MAGAZINE || CALENDAR CALENDAR OMAHA

PATRIOTIC PERCHES

SALON TIME: SONYA CLARK + ALTHEA MURPHY-PRICE + NONTSIKELELO MUTITI

May 4-June 30 at The Union for Contemporary Art, 2423 North 24th St. Salon Time features three artists who examine and celebrate the ritual time and material culture surrounding black women’s hair care. Admission: free. 402-933-3161. —u-ca.org

20

MISSOURI VALLEY IMPRESSIONIST SOCIETY

May 11-June 30 at Gallery 1516, 1516 Leavenworth St. This national juried exhibition features pieces from the Missouri Valley Impressionist Society, a painting group striving to bring impressionism throughout the Missouri River Valley Region. Admission: free. 402-305-1510. —gallery1516.org

EXPERIENCES IN WORLD WAR II

Through July 15 at Durham Museum, 801 S. 10th St. This exhibit features artifacts, photographs, and oral histories to highlight some of the extraordinary achievements and challenges of African-Americans during World War II, both overseas and at home. Admission: $11 adults, $8 seniors (62+), $7 children (3-12), and free to children age 2 and under and members. 402-444-5071. —durhammuseum.org

AMY HANEY

Starting May 25 at Fred Simon Gallery, 1004 Farnman St. An Omaha native, Haney has practiced her artwork in several U.S. cities. Currently a professor in the college of communication, fine arts, and media at UNO, she is excited to share her printmaking pieces. Admission: free. 402-595-2122. —artscouncil.nebraska.gov

Recur ring Thursdays- Saturdays at The Backline Comedy T heat re, 1618 Har ne y St . Prima rily long-form improv, t he Back line a lso hosts standup shows, short-form improv shows, a nd oc c a siona l ly sketch show s. IN TER RO GATED, the Back line’s premiere show, recurs ever y Friday. Times var y. Tickets: $3-5 Thursday, $5-10 Friday and Saturday. 402-720-7670. —back linecomedy.com

THREE TO BEAM UP

Through May 13 at Shelterbelt Theatre, 3225 California St. Directed by Roxanne Wach, this performance tells the story of a man who believes he is the captain of a Federation starship trekking around space. His children have to fight to keep their father’s feet firmly planted on Earth. 8 p.m. on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. 6 p.m. on Sundays. Tickets: $12 on Thursdays. $20 general, $15 students, seniors, and TAG members on weekends. 402-341-2757. —shelterbelt.org

REALITY

Starting June 1 at K ANEKO, 1111 Jones St. Reality will dissect the notion of truth, history, and the presentation of what is “real.” This exhibit will investigate art, science, and technology that creates, alters, and reflects upon the sense of real. Admission: free. 402-341-3800. —thekaneko.org

THE MOUNTAINTOP

THE EYE PERCEIVES

// 10 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

May 4-27 at Omaha Community Playhouse, 6915 Cass St. This Olivier Award-winning play of historical fiction, The Mountaintop imagines the final night in the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Times vary. Tickets: $24. 402-553-0800. —omahaplayhouse.com

June

Starting June 2 at Joslyn Art Museum, 2200 Dodge St. Take a look at 50 masterworks from one of the most private collections of British painting in the U.S. Tickets: $10 adults ($5 on Thursday 4-8 p.m.), $5 college students, free for Joslyn members and ages 17 and younger. 402-342-3300. —joslyn.org

May 10 at Orpheum Theater, 409 S. 16th St. Choreographer Lang has a knack for blending modern design elements and classical ballet to create emotionally moving performances. 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $20-$45. 402-345-0606. —ticketomaha.com

COMEDY SHOWS

Starting May 26 at Omaha Children’s Museum, 500 S. 20th St. Leap to the rescue and learn teamwork, collaboration, and problem-solving through puzzles, mazes, and obstacles just like Leonardo, Michelangelo, Raphael, and Donatello. Also showing at this time is: Children’s China: Celebrating Culture, Character, and Confucius. Admission: $12 adults and kids, $11 seniors, free for children under 2 and members. 402-342-6164. —ocm.org

TREASURES OF BRITISH ART 14002000: THE BERGER COLLECTION

JESSICA LANG DANCE

Stage Performances

NICKELODEON’S TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLE: SECRETS OF THE SEWER

Starting June 1 at Artists Co-op, 405 S. 11th St. View works by Richard Markoff, Gabriella Quiroz and Duane Adams. Admission: free. 402-342-9617. —artistscoopomaha.com

A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM

May 5- 6 at Or pheum Theater, 409 S . Starting June 20 at Lauritzen Gardens, 100 16 t h S t . Sh a ke spe a re’s be st-loved roma nt ic Bancroft St. This exhibit features a collection of c omedy c ome s to l i fe in t he form of ba l let. 51 handcrafted birdhouses by Richard Yost. Yost 7:3 0 p.m . on S at u rd ay a nd 2 p.m . on combines art, geography, and horticulture to Sunday. Tickets: $27-$92. 402-345- 0606 —ticketoma ha.com educate visitors about state birds and flowers. June Each birdhouse is decorated with knickknacks that represent each state. Admission: AN EVENING WITH DAVID SEDARIS $10 adults, $5 ages 6-12, free for garden May 7 at Holland Per for ming Arts members and children under 6. 402-346-4002. Center, 1200 Douglas St. Master of satire and observant writer of the human condition —lauritzengardens.org David Sedaris is one of America’s preeminent humor writers. Hear him live and be ready to laugh. 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $50-$55. 402-345-0606. FIGHTING FOR THE RIGHT TO —ticketomaha.com FIGHT: AFRICAN-AMERICAN

1

THE BEST OF CHICAGO WITH BRASS TRANSIT

Ma y 5 a t Hol l a n d Pe r f or mi ng Ar t s C e nte r, 120 0 D ougl a s St . T he Oma ha Symphony presents the ultimate Chicago experience with the eight piece band of Brass Transit, who performs f lawless renditions of hits like “Saturday in t he Pa rk,” “25 or 6 to 54,” a nd more. 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $19-$89. 402-345-0606. —ticketoma ha.com

OMAHA SYMPHONY: THE PLANETS

May 11-12 at Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St. From Mars, the Bringer of War, to Neptune, the Mystic, Holst depicts the planets of myth and mystery, leaving the audience breathless. 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $19-$72. 402-345-0606. —ticketomaha.com

BIG CANVAS (SHORT-FORM)

May 12 and 25, June 9 and 29 at various locations. Looking for the kind of improv you see on Whose Line Is It Anyway? Big Canvas performs every month’s second Saturday (The Backline at 1618 Harney St.) and last Friday (Sozo Coffeehouse at 1314 Jones St.). Times vary. Tickets: $5. —bigcanvasne.com

MICK FOLEY

May 15 at Omaha Funny Bone, 17305 Davenport St., Suite No. 201. Listen to this professional wrestler’s tale of the most famous match of his career. With humor and ease, Foley talks about the “Hell in a Cell” match, which made him a wrestling legend. 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $25-$75. 402-493-8036. —standupmedia.com


OMAHA MAGAZINE | CALENDAR

WICKED

May 16-June 3 at Orpheum Theater, 409 S. 16th St. This Broadway sensation tells the untold story of what happened in Oz long before Dorothy, and from a different perspective. Times vary. Tickets: $54-$164. 402-345-0606. —ticketomaha.com

ARTURO SANDOVAL: THE DEAR DIZ TOUR

May 17 at Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St. This renowned trumpeter and 10-time Grammy Award-winning artist brings his tour celebrating the legendary jazz master Dizzy Gillespie to Omaha. 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $20-$45. 402-345-0606. —ticketomaha.com

LAZARUS SYNDROME

May 31-June 24 at SNAP! Productions, 3225 California St. Elliott has spent most of his adult life as a person living with AIDS. He struggles with the emotional toll of Lazarus Syndrome. A quiet evening is suddenly interrupted with the unexpected arrival of his brother and father, who arrive carrying homemade matzo ball soup and family baggage. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, 6 p.m. for Sundays. (June 24 show is at 2 p.m.) Tickets: $20 general, $15 for students, seniors, and military (Friday-Sunday). All Thursday shows are $12. 402-341-2757. —snapproductions.com

OMAHA SYMPHONY: THE BEACH BOYS

June 1-3 at Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St. The one and only Beach Boys return with favorite hits like “Good Vibrations,” “California Girls,” “Surfin’ USA,” “Fun, Fun, Fun,” and more. 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets: $29-$109. 402-345-0606. —ticketomaha.com

DISNEY’S NEWSIES

THE CITY IN THE CITY IN THE CITY

May 17-June 17 at BlueBarn Theatre, 1106 S. 10th St. After the death of her mother, Tess and a mysterious woman set off to the ancient city-state of Mastavia and together encounter strange places and people. 7:30 p.m. (Thursday-Saturday), 6 p.m. (Sunday 6/3 & 6/17), 2 p.m. (Sunday 6/10). Tickets: $30 adults, $25 students, seniors, TAG members. 402-345-1576. —bluebarn.org

TIFFANY HADDISH: #SHEREADY

May 19 at Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St. Dubbed the “funniest woman alive” by Vanity Fair, Haddish is quickly establishing herself as one of the most sought-after comedic talents in TV and film. She recently starred in the hit comedy Girls Trip. 7 p.m. Tickets: $35-$55. 402-345-0606. —ticketomaha.com

LIFE ON THE VERTICAL WITH CLIMBER MARK SYNNOTT

June

SHAKESPEARE ON THE GREEN: MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING

June 21-24 at Elmwood Park, 411-1/2 N. Elmwood Road. A story of quick tongues and a false death kick off this Shakespearean tragedy of misunderstandings, love, and deception. Don’t forget to bring a picnic basket and seats. Times vary. Admission: free. —nebraskashakespeare.com

SONYA CLARK’S TRANSLATIONS

June 23 at The Union for Contemporary Art, 2423 N. 24th St. Translations consists of the artist reading poems by Gwendolyn Brooks, Rita Dove, Audre Lorde, and Nikki Giovanni on the subject of hair, written in Twist—a font resembling hair clippings. The piece is performed in a beaded barber’s chair, and represents the sharing of cultural knowledge through hairdressing traditions, and the complex and fraught relations between black women’s personal and political identities. 1-4 p.m. Admission: free. 402-933-3161 —u-ca.org

CHOIR BOY

June 1-3, 8-10, 15-17 at The Rose Theater, 2001 Farman St. This Disney musical tells the story of Jack Kelly, a rebellious newsboy who dreams of life as an artist away from the big city. 2 p.m. or 7 p.m. depending on the date. Tickets: $22-$27. 402-345-4849. —rosetheater.org

June 26 at The Union for Contemporary Art, 2423 N. 24th St. Known most recently for his Oscar Award winning movie Moonlight, Tarell Alvin McCraney’s Choir Boy explores the intersections of black masculinity, sexuality, and respectability politics as it holds a mirror to us all, calling us to do better. 7 p.m. Admission: $20 advanced tickets/free day of show. 402-933-3161 —u-ca.org

TOM SEGURA

SHAKESPEARE ON THE GREEN: KING JOHN

26

June 7-9 at Omaha Funny Bone, 17305 Davenport St., Suite No. 201. This actor/comedian/writer has become one of Hollywood’s most in demand and highly regarded talents. Segura is best known for his three Netf lix specials, Completely Normal (2014), Mostly Stories (2016), and Disgraceful (2018). Times vary. Tickets: $35. 402-493-8036 —omahafunnybone.com

OMAHA SYMPHONY: BEETHOVEN’S NINTH

June 8-9 at Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St. At The Ninth’s premiere, a critic said Beethoven’s “inexhaustible genius revealed a new world to us.” It continues to amaze with its celebration of humanity in the “Ode to Joy.” 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $19-$72. 402-345-0606. —ticketomaha.com

SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN

June 1-24 at Omaha Community Playhouse, 6915 Cass St. The classic movie musical comes to life on stage with charm, humor, and stormy weather that made it so beloved in the first place. Times. Ticket sales start April 10. 402-553-0800. —omahaplayhouse.com

June 28-30 at Elmwood Park, 411-1/2 N. Elmwood Road. Pack a picnic and bring lawn chars or blankets as John must fight his family, the French, and the Pope in order to keep his throne. Times vary. Admission: free. —nebraskashakespeare.com

CONCERTS MISTERWIVES

May 1 at the Slowdown, 729 N. 14th St. This American indie-pop band, who has opened for bands like Panic! at the Disco, American Authors and Twenty One Pilots, will now take center stage. 9 p.m. Tickets: $25 advanced, $28 day of show. 402-345-7569. —theslowdown.com

INGESTED, SIGNS OF THE SWARM, AND BODYSNATCHER

May 3 at Lookout Lounge, 320 S. 72nd St. These three heavy-metal bands will be in Omaha during the beginning leg of their “Devastation On the Nation Tour.” In addition, three other artists: Carnographer, Blessed Are the Merciless, and Xenophonic, will open for the main acts. 6:30-11:30 p.m. Tickets: $13 advanced, $15 day of show. 402-391-2554. —lookoutomaha.com

May 22 at Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St. Rock-climber Synnott has made legendary first ascents of some of the world’s tallest, most forbidding walls. Although he has many passions, one of Synnott’s hobbies includes sharing his life as a professional climber and explorer. 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $11-$26. 402-345-0606. —ticketomaha.com

OMAHA IMPROV FESTIVAL

May 24-27 at various locations. Catch local and national comedians with improv performances and workshops at The Backline, K ANEKO, The Dubliner, and Bourbon Saloon. National headliners include Kevin McDonald of The Kids in the Hall and Seth Morris of Upright Citizens Brigade. Times and ticket prices vary. 402-720-7670. —omahaimprovfest.com MAY/JUNE 2018

// 11 //


OMAHA MAGAZINE MAGAZINE || CALENDAR CALENDAR OMAHA

JAKE MILLER

May 5 at the Waiting Room Lounge, 6212 Maple St. The 23-year-old recording artist, performer, model, and actor has over 11 million Spotify streams and counting. 8 p.m. Tickets: $20 advanced, $25 day of show, $35 early entry. 402-884-5353. —waitingroomlounge.com

BLACK VEIL BRIDES

May 14 at Sokol Auditorium, 2234 S. 13th St. This A merican rock band was formed in Ohio back in 2006. They are known for their use of black makeup, body paint, black studded clothing, and long hair. They take inspiration from K ISS and Mötley Crüe. Musical guests Asking A lexandria and Blessthefall will also be performing. 6:30 p.m. Tickets: $30 plus fees. 402-346-9802. —sokolauditorium.com

A PERFECT CIRCLE

May 15 at Baxter Arena, 2425 S. 67th St. This A merican alternative rock band is known as a supergroup in the rock community, meaning the band’s members have successful solo careers or are part of other well known groups. The band brings their four albums of work to Baxter Arena. 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $39-$79. 402-554- 6200. —omavs.com

SHANIA TWAIN

May 18 at CenturyLink Center, 455 N. 10th St. The Canadian singer/songwriter with over 100 million records sold comes to Omaha on her “NOW” tour. 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $27-$244+. 800-745-3000. —centurylinkcenteromaha.com

U2: EXPERIENCE + INNOCENCE TOUR

LITTLE RIVER BAND

May 5 at Ralston Arena, 7300 Q. St. The internationally recognized classic rockers are coming to Omaha to showcase their iconic vocal and musical energy. 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $24-$45. 402-934-9966. —ralstonarena.com

DAVINA AND THE VAGABONDS

May 10-11 at Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St. This Minneapolis band breathes new life into old-school jazz. Come see their lively performance, f illed with New Orleans charm, Memphis soul, and tender gospel. 7:30 p.m. (Thursday), 8 p.m. (Friday) Tickets: $40. 402-345-0606. —ticketomaha.com

// 12 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

May 19 at CenturyLink Center, 455 N. 10th St. This Irish rock back comes to Omaha to showcase their renowned talent. With 14 albums and over 170 million records sold, they are considered to be on the world ’s best-selling music artists. 8 p.m. Tickets: $41-$325+. 800 -745-3000. —centurylinkcenteromaha.com

THE GOLDEN PELICANS

May 23 at O’Leaver’s, 1322 S. Saddle Creek Road . This a lternative/indie ba nd will per form in Oma ha wit h specia l guests, Rust y Lord and David Nance. 9 p.m. Tickets: $6. 402-556-1238. —facebook.com/oleavers

BRENT COBB & THEM

his album Shine on Rainy Day. 9 p.m. Tickets: $12 advanced, $15 day off show. 402-345-7569. —theslowdown.com

KEITH HARKIN

May 27 at Reverb Lounge, 6121 Militar y Ave. A f ter leaving t he popu la r Irish music group, C elt ic T hu nder, Ha rk in ha s sinc e rele a sed four solo a lbums a nd toured a round Europe, Nor t h A meric a, a nd Austra lia. 8 p.m. Ticket s: $35 adva nced, $55 V IP. 402-884 -5707. —reverblounge.com

BARENAKED LADIES

June 3 at Stir Cove, 1 Har rah’s Blvd , Council Bluf f s . The Ca nadia n rockers a re bringing f un a nd nosta lgia to their “L a st Summer on Ea rt h Tour”. Wit h hits like “One Week,” “Bria n Wilson,” “If I had $1,0 0 0,0 0 0,” a nd more, it’s su re to be u n forget t able f u n. 7 p. m . T ic k e t s : $ 45 - $135. 712 -32 8 - 6 0 0 0. — caesars.com

CAROLINE ROSE

June 7 at Reverb Lounge, 6121 Militar y Ave. Rose’s new a lbum LONER is t he perfect mi x of emotion, satire, a nd hu mor, a l l w rapped up in a ngst y pop songs. 8 p.m. Tickets: $10 adva nc ed, $12 d ay of show. 402-884 -5707. —reverblounge.com

JOHN BUTLER TRIO

June 8 at Sumtur Amphitheate r, 11691 S . 108th St . This Austra lian jam band is k nown for t hei r a c ou s t ic , fol k s y t u ne s l i k e “Ocea n” a nd “Bu lly.” 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $30 genera l admission adva nced, $35 genera l admission day of show, $ 45 - $55 re s er ve d . 8 0 0 -745 -3 0 0 0. — sumtur.org

May

23

May 26 at the Slowdown, 729 N. 14th St. This Georgia-grown country singer makes his way to Omaha, with guest Savannah Conley, to debut

DAYS N DAZE

June 12 at Lookout Lounge, 320 S . 72nd St . This folk-punk ba nd from Houston independent ly record s, produc e s, a nd promote s a ll their own music. See them in Oma ha with band Dummy Head Torpedo. 8-11 p.m. Tickets: $10 advanced, $15 day of show. 402-391-2554. —lookoutoma ha.com


OPENS May 26!

Presented by:

© 2018 Viacom International Inc. All rights reserved. Nickelodeon, TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES and all related titles, logos and characters are trademarks of Viacom International Inc.

Produced by:

KNOW OF A BEAUTIFUL HOME IN OMAHA? LET US KNOW AT

SANDY@OMAHAMAGAZINE.COM

10666 Sapp Bros. Drive Omaha, NE 68138 402-896-9140 Between Exits 439 & 440 on I-80

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 13 //


OMAHA MAGAZINE | CALENDAR

OMAHA MAGAZINE | CALENDAR

FIRST AID KIT (WITH JADE BIRD)

June 13 at Sokol Auditorium, 2234 S. 13th St. The Swedish, sister duo of First Aid Kit combine their vocals with drums and a steel guitar to produce sweet folk tunes. 8 p.m. Tickets: $29. 402-346-9802. —sokolauditorium.com

BLAME IT ON THE BOSSA NOVA Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. confronts destiny, legacy and mortality in this fictitious play.

This beloved movie musical comes to life on stage with charm, humor and stormy weather.

June 17 at First Central Congregational Church, 421 S. 36th St. This all-ages concert is a perfect way to kick off the summer. MasterSingers, an a capella group, will perform classic and modern music infused with their own unique sound. 6 p.m. Tickets: $12. 402-345-1533. —mastersingersomaha.com

COLE SWINDELL

June 22 at Stir Cove, 1 Harrah’s Blvd., Council Bluffs. This American country singer is also an established songwriter, having written hits for Thomas Rhett, Scotty McCreery, Luke Bryan, and more. 8 p.m. Tickets: $48-$75+. 712-328-6000. —caesars.com

IMAGINE DRAGONS: EVOLVE TOUR May 4 – 27 show sponsor:

June 1 – 24 media sponsor:

series sponsor:

show sponsor:

orchestra sponsor:

effects sponsors:

media sponsor:

Rich & Fran Juro

June 24 at CenturyLink Center, 455 N. 10th St. This American rock band has won three American Music Awards, five Billboard Music Awards, one Grammy Award, and one World Music Award from just three albums. 7 p.m. Tickets: $36-$101+. 800-745-3000. —centurylinkcenteromaha.com

SUGARLAND

6915 Cass St. | (402) 553-0800 | OmahaPlayhouse.com

June 28 at CenturyLink Center, 455 N. 10th St. This American country music duo brings their upbeat, modern country f lare to Omaha. 7 p.m. Tickets: $30-$115. 800-745-3000. —centurylinkcenteromaha.com

POST ANIMAL

June

29

June 29 at the Slowdown, 729 N. 14th St. This Chicago-based band of brothers is good at incorporating slick riffs, pop hooks, and psychedelic tendencies in their music. They come to Omaha in 2018, only their second year of touring ever. 9 p.m. Tickets: $10 advanced, $12 day of show. 402-345-7569. —theslowdown.com

TWISTA

June 29 at the Waiting Room Lounge, 6212 Maple St. This American rapper is in Omaha promoting his recent album Dark Horse. The rapper is best known for once holding the title of “Fastest Rapper in the World” in 1992, according to Guinness World Records. 9 p.m. Tickets: $20 advanced, $25 day of show. 402-884-5353 —waitingroomlounge.com

Whether it is day or night, inside or out, Joslyn has so much to offer. FREE GENERAL ADMISSION

(paid ticketed admission for some exhibitions)

THURSDAYS: Open ‘til 8 pm! ART WORKS: A Place for Curiosity Interactive space for all ages!

explore AT

NOW

Joslyn Art Museum features works from antiquity to the present with an emphasis on 19th- and 20th-century European and American art. A fun, relaxing, and artful destination for the whole family. Open Tuesday–Sunday, 10 am–4 pm. Just west of downtown Omaha. Café, Museum shop, and free parking.

2200 Dodge St. | Omaha, NE | (402) 342-3300 | www.joslyn.org

// 14 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

Family & More FARMERS MARKETS

Gardening season is open in Omaha, and those desiring fresh produce will find plenty of options in the area, along with artisan cheeses, farm-raised meats, freshly baked breads, assorted treats, and craft items. • Aksarben Village (67th and Center streets) 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Sundays starting May 6 • Benson (4343 N. 52nd St.) 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays starting May 5. • Council Bluffs (Bayliss Park) 4:30-7:30 p.m. Thursday starting May 3.


OMAHA MAGAZINE | CALENDAR • Gifford Park (33rd and California streets) 5-8 p.m. Fridays starting June 1. • Florence Mill (9102 N. 30th St.) 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Sundays starting June 3. • Old Market (11th and Jackson streets) 8 a.m.12:30 p.m. Saturdays starting May 5 • Papillion (84th and Lincoln Street) 5-8 p.m. Wednesdays starting May 30.

108th & Center | rockbrookvillage.com

• Village Pointe (168th and Dodge streets) 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Saturdays starting May 5.

BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY ANNUAL SHAREHOLDER’S WEEKEND

M a y 4 - 6 a t C e n t u r y L i n k C e n t e r , 455 N . 10 t h S t . S h a r e h o l d e r s i n t h e c o m p a n y c r e a t e d b y O r a c l e o f O m a h a Wa r r e n B u f f e t c a n l e a r n a b o u t t h e y e a r ’s e a r n i n g a t t h i s a n nu a l m e e t i n g . Ev e nt s i n c l u d e t h e “ I n v e s t i n Yo u rsel f ” 5k r u n, a brid ge tou rna ment, shop p i n g , a n d m o r e . T i m e s v a r y. 4 0 2 -3 41-15 0 0 . — c ent u r ylin kc enteroma ha .c om

Why Helix is Better

Full Service

Ha i r, Na i l s a nd S ki n Call today to schedule your appointment

11025 Elm St. / 402.397.7383 / reveomaha.com

CINCO DE MAYO PARADE

May 5 , al ong 24 St . f rom D to L st reet s . T h i s d a z z l i ng pa r ade — one of t he la rge st Ci nc o de Mayo c elebr at ion s i n t he M idwe st—feat u re s f loat s, ma rching ba nd s, a nd more. Ot her event festivities ta ke place May 4- 6, before and a f ter the parade a long L to P streets. R ain or shine. 10 a.m. Admission: free. — cincodemayooma ha.com

Most machines work front-to-back. Why Helix Istradition Better The Helix turns on its side— Why Helix Is Better literally. Withwork lateral (or side-to-side) Most machines front-to-

movement, you usetradition more muscles, which MostThe machines work front-toback. Helix turns on means you burn more fat than during back. The Helix turnsWith tradition its side— literally. lateralon a traditional workout—in the same its side-to-side) side— literally. With lateral ( or movement, you amount of time. ( or side-to-side) movement, you use more muscles, which means use which means youmore burn muscles, more fat than during a THANK YOU you burn more fat than during a traditional workout– in the same OMAHA! traditional workout– in the same amount of time. amount of time.

AU T HEN T IC I TAL IAN GOURME T MARKE T

OMAHA’S

BEST ITALIAN BEEF

2821 S. 108th / Omaha / 402.991.9987 / marescos.com

in Rockbrook Village in Rockbrook Village 10923 prairie brooke rd, omaha, ne 68144 10923 prairie brooke rd, omaha, ne 68144 402.991.2300 402.991.2300

o m a h a m a g a z i n e . c o m

BEER, BRATS & BEGONIAS

M a y 5 a t t h e G a r d e n G a l l e r y , 2 7 21 N . 2 0 6 t h S t , E l k h o r n . T h i s a n nu a l e v e nt f e a t u r e s a r t , mu s i c , a n d b e e r. Ev e nt f e s t i v it i e s i n c lu d e l i v e mu s i c a n d o v e r 3 0 a r t i s t s , a l on g w it h pla nt s to g a z e at: a n nu a ls, peren n ia l s , t r o p i c a l s , a n d h a n g i n g b a s k e t s . 10 a . m .-5 p. m . A d m i s s i on : f r e e . 4 0 2 -70 7- 0 0 5 6 . — t h e - g a r d e n - g a l l e r y.b l o g s p o t .c om

The most complete, real-time calendar of events in the Omaha area.

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 15 //


OMAHA MAGAZINE MAGAZINE || CALENDAR CALENDAR OMAHA

LANTERN FEST

SPRING NIGHT HIKE AT THE WETLANDS

May 5 at Raceway Park of the Midlands, Jesup Ave., Pacif ic Junction. Before sundown, friends and families can enjoy food, live music, a stage show, familiar princesses, face painters, s’mores, balloon artists, and more. W hen the time is just right, visitors will get the chance to light the sky with their highest hopes and fondest dreams. 3-11 p.m. Admission: $7-$60. 1-800-994-2515. —omaha.eventful.com

SATURDAYS @ STINSON CONCERT SERIES

May 12 at Wetlands Learning Center, 695 Camp Gif ford Road . Join in on a night hike in the wetlands as we try to identify any animals we observe. Participants should bring a f lashlight or headlamp and dress for the weather. 7-10 p.m. Admission: regular admission, free to members. 402-731-3140 —fontenelleforest.org

May

Starting May 5 at Stin son Park , 2285 S . 67th St . Food, drink s, face pa inting, a nd ba lloon a r tists will a ll be ava ilable during t hese live concer ts, wh ich fe at u re t a lented ba nd s in Oma ha . 7-10 p.m. Ad mission: f ree. 402- 496 -1616. —aksarbenvillage.com

RENAISSANCE FESTIVAL OF NEBRASKA

May 5- 6 and 12-13 at Bellevue Berry Farm, 11001 S. 48th St. Step back in time to the days of knights in shining armor with full contact sword play, equestrian jousting, six unique performance locations, 100+ costumed characters, and free make-and-take crafts. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Admission: $13 adults, $8 children. 402-331-5500. —renfestnebraska.com

5

OMAHA ROLLERGIRLS ROLLER DERBY

May 12 at R al ston Are n a , 730 0 Q St . It’s double the action with this double header on Star Wars/Fa mi ly Night. Get a $1 beer while watching the show, during the f irst hour only. 6 -8 p.m. Admission: $12 adu lts, $6 children (4 -10), free for children 3 and under. 402-980-5579. —ralstonarena.com

FLORENCE DAYS

May 12-13 in downtown Florence, 30th St . between State St. and I- 680 N. Historic Florence retains its own small-town feeling with this annua l event. Activities include a parade, art displays, a melodrama, talks about the historic Florence Mill, and more. 10 a.m. Admission: free. —historicf lorence.org

HIGH TEA AND TALONS

YOGA ROCKS THE PARK

May 13 at Fontenelle Forest, 1111 Bellevue Blvd . Enjoy Mother’s Day surrounded by birds. At this event, guest will enjoy tea, small pastries, and sandwiches while learning about birds of prey. Fanc y dress is encouraged. 1-3 p.m. Admission: $5 for members, $15 for non-members (includes daily admission). 402-731-3150 —fontenelleforest.org

LEASHES AT LAURITZEN

2018 NATIONAL GOLDEN GLOVES FINALS

Starting May 6 at Turner Park, 3110 Farnam St. This healing arts festival takes place on Sundays and combines yoga and live music as a way to heal your mind and body. 4 p.m. (3:30 registration). Admission: free; donations accepted. —midtowncrossing.com

May 7 and 14, June 4 and 11 at Lauritzen Gardens, 100 Bancrof t St. Bring your canine friends to explore the grounds and enjoy the outdoors. Heel for family photos, learn about local dog-related nonprof its, and enjoy treats/samples with your pup. 5-8 p.m. Admission: $10 adults and $5 for dogs; free for garden members. 402-346-4002. —lauritzengardens.org

SOUNDRY WORKSHOP: INSTRUMENT BUILDING

M a y 10 a t K A N E KO , 1111 Jo n e s S t . Adu lt lea rners (18 a nd up) will investigate t he a r t of sou nd inst a l lat ion, inst r u ment building, and 21st compositiona l techniques. Pa r t icipa nt s w i l l be able to cre ate, play, a nd ta ke home t heir ver y own instrument. 6 -7 p.m. Ad m ission: $20. 402-3 41-380 0. —thekaneko.org

SIP NEBRASKA WINE FESTIVAL

May 11-12 at Mahoney State Park, 28500 W. Park Hwy. Celebrate spring and wine and this 5th annua l wine event highlighting vintages from Nebraska wineries and craft breweries. Live music, unlimited wine, hard cider, craft beer, food, art, and more will be available. 4 -10 p.m. (Friday), 1-10 p.m. (Saturday). Ad mission: $25-$120. 402-882-24 48. —blurparties.com

CELEBRATE CB

May 11-12, 19 in Council Bluf fs, various locations. Hop across the river for events like Celebrate at The River, a barbecue, a parade, and more festivities. Times vary. Admission: free. 712-396-2494. —celebratecb.com

// 16 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

THIRD ANNUAL FOOD TRUCK RODEO

May 18 outside Reverb Lounge, 6121 Militar y Ave. Here’s a chance to sample some of Oma ha’s favorite food on wheels a ll in one location. 15 food trucks will unite with a DJ and multiple outdoor bars for this local favorite. 4-11 p.m. Admission: free. 402-884-5707. —reverblounge.com

ELKHORN ANTIQUE FLEA MARKET

May 20 at Walworth Count y Fairg round s, 411 East Court St . This Elk horn event, held four times a year, hosts over 500 vendors each with their own unique treasures. 7 a.m.-4 p.m. R ain or shine. Admission: $5. 414-525-0820. —nlpromotionsllc.com

SALUTE TO SUMMER FESTIVAL

May 24-27 in downtown La Vista. Old-fashioned fun will be available at this annual event, which ta kes place on Memoria l Day weekend. There will be a carnival in Central Park, a parade down Park View Boulevard, and more. Times var y. Admission: free. 402-331-4343. —cityof lavista.org/lavistadaze

LOESSFEST

May 25-28 at River’s Edge Park. Come to Council Bluffs for outdoor activities at this Memorial Day Weekend event. Events include a free community concert, carnival, parade, and much more. Times var y. Admission: free. 712-328-4650. —loessfest.com

May 14 -19 at R al ston Arena , 730 0 Q St . The f ina ls come back to Oma ha for the f irst time since 2006! Top Golden Gloves competitors will vie for the national title. 8:30 a.m.8:30 p.m. Ad mission: $10. 402-934 -9966. —ralstonarena.com

KEVIN HART

May 17 at CenturyLink Center, 455 N. 10th St. Comedian and actor Kevin Hart brings his stand-up comedy show to Omaha on his “Irresponsible Tour.” 7 p.m. Admission: $35-$125+. 800-745-3000. —centurylinkcenteromaha.com

HELICOPTER DAY

May 26 at Strategic Air Command and Aerospace Museum, 28210 W. Park Hwy. Visitors can watch helicopters f ly away and land right in front of them. Inside the museum, workshops and family-friendly activities await the visitors. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Admission: $12 adults; $6 children. $65 if you want to take a ride in a helicopter. 402-944-3100. —sacmuseum.org

VIBES AT VILLAGE POINTE

Starting May 31 at Village Pointe Shopping Center, 17305 Davenport St. Stop by the shopping center ever y Thursday for live music. Make sure to bring a blanket or chair. 6:30-8:30 p.m. Admission: free. 402-505-9773. —villagepointeshopping.com


OMAHA MAGAZINE | CALENDAR

BENSON BEER FEST

June 2 in Benson, 60th and Maple. This beer-lovers’ festival hosts hundreds of breweries, local food vendors, raff les, giveaways, and music for one day. 3-7 p.m. Admission: $35 general, $40 day of event, $45 V IP. —bensonbeerfest2018.com

ELKHORN DAYS

June 1-3 throughout Elkhorn. This year’s festival is themed “Fun and Games” and features a casino night, hot air balloon rides, a movie night, parade, fireworks display, and other family fun. Times var y. Admission: free. 402-289-9560 —elkhorndays.com

music and the hot air balloon show to follow. 4 p.m. Admission: $25 for those 21 and over (includes a glass of wine or beer), $15 for ages 12-20, free for k ids under 12. 402-253-2479. —soaring wingswine.com

will showcase and demonstrate their work here. Food and live entertainment a lso available. Times var y. Admission: free. 402-444-5900. —summerarts.org

MOO AT THE ZOO

STARS AND STRIPES DAY

COUNTRYSIDE VILLAGE ART FAIR

ROSE DAY AND SHOW

June 2-3 at Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium, 3701 S. 10th St. Meet in the Desert Dome Plaza for an day filled with agriculture. Get up close to multiple breeds of dairy cows and try some country cooking. Dancing, airbrush tattoo, and carnival games will also be available. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Admission: regular zoo admission, free to members. 402-733-8401. —omahazoo.com

June 9 at Gifford Farms, 700 Camp Gifford Road. Bring a picnic lunch and enjoy a day at the farm. Be prepared to learn about planets, stars, and constellations, while also seeing a police cruiser, a motorcycle, a firetruck, and farm animals up close and personal. This event is a tribute to those who serve. 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Admission: $5 ages 2 and up. 402-597-4920. —esu3.org

TASTE OF OMAHA

June 1-3 at Omaha Riverfront and Heartland of America Park, 800 Douglas St. This annual food-filled festival features eats from nearly 50 restaurants. Accompanied by live music, entertainment, and activities at Heartland of America Park, Lewis & Clark Landing, and River’s Edge Park. Times vary. Admission: free. 402-346-8003. —showofficeonline.com

OMAHA ODDITIES AND ART EXPO

June 2 at Comfort Inn and Suites, 7007 Grover St. This first annual expo and sale will offer a variety of oddities, curiosities, and art from over 30 vendors. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Admission: $5 ($4 with can food donation), free for children 13 and under. 402-506-5852. —voodoosoddshop.com

June 2-3 at Countryside Village Shopping Center, 8722 Countryside Plaza. The annual fair showcases a mix of styles, perceptions, and media. The artwork selection inspires casual visitors to start art collections, and connoisseurs to add to existing collections. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday. Admission: free. 402-391-2200. —countryside-village.com 


ANNUAL VETERANS APPRECIATION RALLY

June 3 near North Omaha Airport, 12005 N. 72nd St. All to honor veterans, this event features classic cars, motorcycles, and airplanes. Activities include raff les and skydiving shows. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Admission: free; $5 donation requested. 402-714-4269. —@heroesoftheheartlandfoundation on Facebook

MONDAY NIGHT MOVIES CASTLEPALOOZA

June 2 at Joslyn Castle, 3902 Davenport St. This community festival will take place on the grounds of the historic Joslyn Castle. Enjoy a historic neighborhood tour on bicycle that concludes on the castle grounds, where live music, family activities, vendors, food trucks, and craft beer will be waiting. 4-10 p.m. Admission: free. 402-595-2199. —joslyncastle.com

WINE, BEER, BLUES, AND BALLOON FESTIVAL

June 2 at Soaring Wings Vineyard , 17111 S . 138th St. The 14th annual blues event will feature musica l guests Rex Granite Band, Sara h Benck, Connie Hawkins and the Blueswreckers, Keeshea Pratt Band, and Harlis Sweetwater Band. Bring a chair and blanket to take in the

Mondays June 4-July 30 at Turner Park, 3110 Farnam St. Laugh, cry, and relax with classic movies under the stars this summer. Children and pets are welcome to enjoy this free night out. Movies begin at dusk. Admission: free. —midtowncrossing.com

SANTA LUCIA ITALIAN FESTIVAL

June 7-10 at Lewis and Clark Landing, 345 Riverfront Drive. Come experience the richness of Italian history and culture at the 94th annual event. Carnival rides, authentic Italian foods, music, and nightly entertainment will all be available. Times vary. Admission: free. 402-342-6632. —santaluciafestival.com

SUMMER ARTS FESTIVAL

June 8-10 at Gene Leahy Mall, 1302 Farnam St. Over 135 artists from across the country

June 10 at Lauritzen Gardens, 100 Bancroft St. Join the Omaha Rose Society to promote the culture and appreciation of the rose. See a variety of rose blooms and arrangements on display for judging, visit with rosarians, and explore the rose garden. June 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Admission: $10 adults, $5 children (6-12), free for children under 6. 402-346-4002. —lauritzengardens.org

10

TEMPO OF TWILIGHT

June 12, 19, 26 at Lauritzen Gardens, 100 Bancroft St. This outdoor concert series brings local entertainment to the garden, perfectly blending music and nature. Bring chairs, food, and the family for a night of fun. 6-8 p.m. Admission: regular garden admission, free for members. 402-346-4002. —lauritzengardens.org

PAPILLION DAYS

June 13 -17 in Papillion . Treat Dad to a festival over Father’s Day weekend. This annual e vent includes a pa rade, f ire work s, c a rniva l, a nd much more. Times va r y. Ad mission: $25 for carniva l tickets. 402-331-3917. —papilliondays.org

COLLEGE WORLD SERIES OPENING DAY

June 15 at TD Ameritrade Park, 1200 Mike Fahey, St . Before the series starts, come to the park for a day f ull of events, including FanFest, tea m autograph sessions, practices, Oly mpic-st yle opening ceremonies, a concert, and a f irework s f ina le. Activities begin at 9:10 a.m. Admission: free. 402-554- 4422. —cwsomaha.com MAY/JUNE 2018

// 17 //


OMAHA MAGAZINE | CALENDAR

COLLEGE WORLD SERIES

J u n e 16 -2 6 /2 7 a t T D A m e r i t r a d e P a r k , 1 2 0 0 M i k e F a h e y S t . T h i s a n nu a l b a s e ba l l tou rna ment of fers fa ns t he cha nc e t o b e a p a r t o f a c h e r i s h e d t r a d it i on t h a t i n c lu d e s t a i l g a t i n g a n d c h e e r i n g o n y o u r favorite col lege ba seba l l tea ms. 2 or 7 p. m . A d m i s s i on : $35 - $10 0 . 402-554- 4422. — cwsomaha.com

Four Old Market

COMMUNITY PAINT DAY

June 16 at The Union for Contemporary Art, 2423 N. 24th St. The Union’s Neighborhood Arts program and Creighton University Graphic Design II students led by professor and former Union Fellow Betni Kalk teamed up to complete a new mural design for the Omaha Small Business Network ’s Business and Technolog y Center. A ll ages and no painting skills necessary to participate. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Admission: free. 402-933-3161 —u-ca.org

Unique holiday décor, ornaments, collectibles and gifts for every season.

Chocolates and fudge made in our own kitchen, plus many other sweet temptations.

oTannenbaum.com • 402-345-9627

OldMarketCandy.com • 402-344-8846

POLISH FEST

June 23 at Crescent Moon and Huber-Haus German Bier Hall . Try a variety of Polish beers at this festival, which celebrates food and drink from the land that gave us Pope John Paul II. Food includes Polish sausage, glombki, and perogies. Noon-11 p.m. Admission: 402-345-1708. —beercornerusa.com

ZYDECO FESTIVAL

J u n e 2 3 a t Tu r n e r P a r k , 3110 F a r n a m St . Enjoy a d ay of Creole a nd C aju n-st yle food, a s wel l a s act iv it ie s a nd mu sic f rom artists from throughout the New Orlea n s r e g i o n . 3 -10 p . m . A d m i s s i o n : f r e e . —midtowncrossing.com

Travel essentials plus downtown’s largest selection of souvenirs and Nebraska-made gifts.

Authentic Italian desserts, coffee, and FlavorBurst TM soft serve ice cream.

OldMarketSundries.com • 402-345-7646

DolciOldMarket.com • 402-345-8198

All located at 10th & Howard OMAHA MAGAZ INE’S

FamilyGuide

// 18 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


OMAHA MAGAZINE | CALENDAR

OMAHA CELEBRATES AMERICA, FEATURING STARSHIP AND SURVIVOR

HEARTLAND PRIDE FESTIVAL

June

June 29 at Memorial Park, 6005 Underwood Ave. O m a h a ’s 2 8 t h a n n u a l p r e Four t h of Ju ly event will feature music from Starship a nd Su r v ior, w it h t he C onf identials as the opening act, followed by f ireworks. 6 p. m . c onc e r t a nd 10 p. m . f i r e w or k s s h o w. A d m i s s i o n : f r e e . 4 0 2 - 4 4 4 -59 0 0 . — omahacelebratesamerica.com

29

June 29 -30 at var iou s location s. This festiva l is about the celebration, recognition, a nd integration of LGBTQ+ people a nd cu lture. Event s include a pa rade in Council Blu f fs, a yout h pride festiva l, a nd a pride festiva l at Ba xter A rena. Times v a r y. A d m i s s i o n : $ 52 V I P, $1 2 f e s t i v a l ent ra nc e, f ree for outdoor fe st iva l grou nd s. —hea rtla ndpride.org

Event times and details may change. Check with venue or event organizer to confirm.

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 19 //


For expanded content, return to the Table of Contents page and scan with your layAR app.


A+C MUSIC // STORY BY JOSEFINA LOZA // PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

MI WI LA LU PA The Lone Wolf from Buffalo MAY/JUNE

// 21 //

2018


// A+C MUSIC //

AS SOON AS Miwi La Lupa’s melodies hit ears, listeners

succumb to the indie-folk dynamo. Seduced by his poignant lyrics, the roar of bar chatter fell silent during a recent Slowdown performance. There he stood: tall, brilliant, and gently strumming his guitar. Miwi is a singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist from Buffalo, New York, now living in Omaha, by way of New York City. His songs are powerful, weighty, and, quite frankly, heartbreaking at times. If music is essential for nourishing the soul, Miwi’s cup runneth over. His voice is simple and clear with a raw intimacy that pulls influence from traditional and contemporary folk music, classic country, and indie rock. Annie Dilocker, a fellow musician and friend, who walked into the bar halfway through Miwi’s first song, recalls the scene: “The whole room was so quiet; listening to him.” After the second song, Miwi broke the silence with a joke: “You guys could all talk a little…You can make it all feel like a real bar’s bar.” That odd humor and sensibility, well, that’s Miwi, Dilocker says. He has a witty way with words, yet, when asked about his lyrics, Miwi has kept the meanings of many of his songs a mystery.

“We were always singing along to stuff on the radio at the time,” he says. “Yeah, Mom was a Motown girl so we listened to black radio in Buffalo. Those ’60s and ’70s classics and whatever was on [the radio] in the ’80s. Obviously, your Michael Jacksons and your Janet Jacksons.” School music lessons and his older brother had a profound and lasting impact on Miwi as well. “My brother started taking drum lessons and, being his younger brother, I wanted to be just like him.” When Miwi was old enough for lessons he picked up drums before switching to saxophone. “I was 6 or 7 years old; I don’t exactly remember why [I changed instruments],” Miwi says. “I had a lisp and remembered it felt good to say saxophone with a lisp.” Nowadays, Miwi teaches guitar, piano, and trombone at the Papillion House of Music. In a recent conversation with his mother, he expressed his concern for his students: “Some of these kids, they don’t practice.” Mom, he recalls, was like: “Yeah, you didn’t practice either. You would always forget your saxophone.”

Lyrically he kind of writes for everyone, says Billy Jackson, his longtime friend and manager. “He’s not just writing a story about himself. For the most part, he’s taking a small bit of what he’s experienced and weaves a thread between him and everyone else.”

“She would always be chasing after the bus because I forgot my saxophone,” he says with a laugh. “And, I’d just lie about how many minutes I’d practice each day. Until one day I had this teacher who said this other kid was better than me at saxophone, and that’s when I started practicing.”

Miwi is an enigma—fascinating, complex, and full of subtleties that make you want to learn about him.

In middle school, Miwi began playing low-brass instruments, mostly trombone. He later transitioned into high school band and jazz band, where he quickly made friends and started a band of his own. The summer before Miwi left for Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, to study trombone, he took his personal band to Wales for a tour.

Who is this Miwi La Lupa? The man who accompanied Conor Oberst as the indie darling performed two songs from his solo album Ruminations on Jimmy Kimmel Live two years ago. The man who blends the quirkiness of folk with the rhythms of soul and blues and a lil’ bit of country to create incredible sounds. The man who seeks depth of relationships in his albums Beginner’s Guide, Ended Up Making Love, and New Way Home. Miwi developed an affinity for music at an early age. His mother, “a Motown girl,” filled her home with sweet melodies, while Kenny G’s Christmas records were the soundtrack to the holidays.

“Which is kind of crazy to think about…with no internet,” he says. “We were like 17, traveling internationally by ourselves. We were kind of trying to be a 50-year-old-man lounge singer at a hotel bar. It just seems insane to me now.” That cover band later became known as Thought, which was Miwi’s main writing project for roughly 15 years. “He’s really serious about music. He’s been that way his whole life. I remember him telling me how he would be up all night playing with local musicians in Buffalo and would come home super late,” Dilocker says. “He wrote about not wanting to wake up his mother in one of his songs, ‘Buffalo Folks.’” The lyrics go: I crept in through the back door as the birds began to sing / Tried not to wake my mama but she hears everything / She asked me how the job went as she lit a waking smoke / I said the job was good the band played on I made a buck and I’m slightly buzzed / And this is what I’m made of I’m a Buffalo Folk.

// 22 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

I C RA ES P TT IH NE T BI HR RD OS U GB E HG TA HN E T BO A CS I KN DG O O R

T RS I EH DE NH E OA TR TS OE WV AE KR EY T MH I YN MG A M A B U T

SA H ES AS SH KE E LI DT MA E HW OA WK I TN HG ES JM OO BK WE E N T


// A+C MUSIC //

“He has such a great ear,” Dilocker says. “What I find interesting working with him is that he has all these side melodies that pop up in his head. He comes up with some creative sounds…atmospheric sounds with bass versus your typical rhythmic bass lines.” Thought bandmates later moved to Brooklyn where Miwi worked as a freelance musician and an original member of New York bands Red Baraat and Knights on Earth. After grinding in the city for 10 years, Miwi met an Omaha musician—Oberst—who shared the same musical values and offered guidance.

Miwi and Dilocker are currently finishing a record for their band, Dirt House, a collective that also features violinist Amy Carey and drummer Roger L. Lewis. Miwi also curates the open mic nights at Pageturners in Midtown. “He likes to make sure new voices are being heard and various types of artists are being represented,” Dilocker says.

“Through some musical friends I met Conor at our favorite bar,” he explains. “We became friends… and I eventually started playing music with him and started going on tours.”

During his downtime at home, he and his roommates listen to vinyl and “do a lot of hanging out by the fireplace listening to records and chit-chatting through the night.”

In 2014, Miwi released his debut album New Way Home on Team Love Records with the help of Monica Jane Frisell. “That was a real rough and rumble making of a record in a small room with a small microphone, but they pieced it together,” Jackson says. Miwi’s second album, Ended Up Making Love, was released in 2016 on Team Love Records and was recorded at ARC Studios in Omaha with Oberst and Mike Mogis as producers. “‘Giant Sleeping’ was a great song on that album,” Jackson exclaims. And then there’s “I Yield,” of which he says, “If you don’t feel something when you listen to that song, you are a dead person walking.”

A B N I AD SN I AD I ’ DPM L T AS H Y LI EEG H J DT OO L B NY WI B AM U S AZ G DZ E OED OA D B TU HC EK

I ’ AM N DA TB HU I SF F IA SL O W F HO AL TK . ’I M M A D E O F

Though Miwi had only been to Omaha to visit on tour and record a handful of times, he took a leap of faith and moved to Nebraska to pursue his music career. “There was this living opportunity that came up,” he says. “Conor basically recruited me to come and live in Omaha. I thought, for what I want to do, this is becoming more and more difficult to do in big cities—making music, making records, and touring. That’s a whole process in New York. After I thought about that, it was a pretty easy decision.” He remembers driving across the George Washington Bridge and never looking back. Within five months, he was on a plane to the U.K. to tour and relieved that he had the flexibility to go. When he returned, he had a job at his friend’s bar waiting for him. With a willingness to play different venues in new places, Miwi admits he has performed “from the [Madison Square] Garden to the [Metropolitan] Opera House to O’Leaver’s…I’ve slept on floors and suites and all within a couple months of each other.” In Omaha, he stays busy making music and recording. He released his third album, Beginner’s Guide, in 2016 on his new label Tigershrimp Records (just half a year after the debut of Ended Up Making Love).

The house record library has about 2,000 albums. “Which is neat because a lot of music I haven’t heard before, which gets me in trouble…The cool thing about these fireside hangs is that we often listen to these records over and over,” Miwi says. “When it’s done, we just flip over the record and hear it again.” Among the belongings Miwi brought with him when he moved to Omaha from Brooklyn was a copy of Them Old Country Songs, a 1972 classic collection that included the likes of Skeeter Davis, Porter Wagoner, and Dolly Parton. “I didn’t grow up in a rock ’n’ roll environment,” he says. “I brought the country records…or at least wanting to listen to country records in the house, which is why we started Delores Diaz and the Standby Club.” The country cover band consists of Miwi and Corina Figueroa, Conor Oberst, Roger L. Lewis, Mike Mogis, Phil Schaffart, Matt Maginn, Dan McCarthy, Jim Schroeder, and Ben Brodin. The band may be just for fun, but they take their music seriously. Speaking of getting serious, Miwi performed a handful of new songs at Slowdown in March from a self-produced project that he’s working on and hopes to release in the fall. Back to his lyrics, “I often think of letting people down. I wish I was more…science fiction,” he jokes. “You know that breakup record I made, it’s all science fiction.” Postscript: Miwi La Lupa has a lot of musical projects. In Omaha, the Miwi La Lupa band has consisted of various local musicians, including John Evans, Jacob Cubby Phillips, Annie Dilocker, Luke Polipnick, Max Stehr, Jon Ochsner, and Tyler Chickinelli.  Visit miwilalupa.com for more information.

He plays 10 instruments well. He’s an engineer, producer, singer, and lyricist. He’s a utility instrumentalist of sorts for Mogis. “He’ll just call me up into the studio for singing backup vocals… or playing bass guitar or trombone for whatever he’s working on,” Miwi says.

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 23 //


SECTION // NAMES

// 24 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


A+C AR T // PHOTOG STORY BY NIZ RA PR DESIGN PHY BY SARAH OSKOCIL BY MAT T WIECZ LEMKE OREK

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 25 //


// A+C ART //

World-Renowned Artist and Omaha Native Ed Ruscha's Work on View at Joslyn Art Museum CURIOSITY AND WIT, a knack for com-

municating visually, and a keen ability to capture disillusions and desires. Those are just a few qualities displayed in the work of Ed Ruscha, a California-based painter regarded as one of the most important and influential contemporary American artists. Before becoming a major name in the art world, Ruscha (pronounced rooshay) spent his early youth in Omaha, where he was born in 1937. He was about 5 when his family moved to Ok lahoma City. In 1956, at age 18, he left home for Los Angeles to study at the Chouinard Art Institute, now the California Institute of the A rts. His accla imed ca reer encompa sses drawings, paintings, books, prints, and photographs of mundane subject matter: gasoline stations, apartment buildings, desolate landscapes, roadside billboards, stylized mountains, and the famous Holly wood sign. His creations over the past six decades are the focus of a large, exhilarating exhibition that opened in February at Joslyn Art Museum. On view through May 6, the Joslyn show—117 pieces in a range of media and scale—is titled Word/ Play: Prints, Photographs, and Paintings by Ed Ruscha. It’s the first major exhibition to feature the contemporary art master in his home state. “The works sort of span my whole life as an artist, and everything I do comes from the same old mix master anyway,” Ruscha, 80, says by phone from Los Angeles. “I feel like I’ve been doing basically the same

// 26 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

kind of work that I was doing when I was 18 years old. I’m just kind of a variation on a theme. It moves from one thing to another, and so I just follow it along. And here I am.” Although he’s primarily described as a West Coast artist inspired by his adopted Southern California home, the Midwest, he says, had “a profound inf luence” on him. “Psychologists say the first three years of your life you pick up on things that actually stay with you the rest of your life,” says Ruscha, who still recalls his childhood home on Lafayette Avenue. “I was upstairs asleep and I woke up, and I distinctly heard and saw an owl in a tree. So maybe that owl was talking to me and said something about why not be an artist?” During trips back to Omaha, once in the early 1970s and again in February when he spoke at the Joslyn, he visited a couple of his old homes and photographed them. They still look the same, he says, right down to the cracks on the sidewalk. Ruscha, whose work blends conceptual art, pop art, and other styles, is known for paintings that often incorporate words and phrases. His evocative word paintings contain playful language, double meanings, onomatopoeia, and other linguistic devices. Palindromes are featured in two dramatic mountain paintings on view at the Joslyn: “Never Odd or Even” and “Lion in Oil.”

Ruscha’s art showcases a range of elements, particularly his interests in advertising, cinema, commercial signage, and typography. Over the years, he has experimented with unorthodox artistic materials, including axle grease, tobacco, blood, gunpowder, and carrot and beet juices. Included in the show is a series of screen prints, “News, Mews, Pews, Brews, Stews & Dues,” created with pie filling, chocolate syrup, bolognese sauce, and other food. A desire to go beyond using oil paint on canvas started around 1970. “I felt like maybe I want to do something else besides this. I want to do something that maybe involves a staining of a canvas,” Ruscha recalls. “What are the mark-making devices that I can use? And so I came up with gunpowder, I came up with natural substances. It became just this big wide world.” The show also offers a look at his photography. On view is a striking selection of images of consumer goods, including a box of raisins. A 1963 photo of a Standard Oil gas station became the basis for several paintings and prints from Ruscha’s celebrated Sta nda rd Station series. Museumgoers ca n peruse severa l small artist’s books he produced during the 1960s, including the la ndmark Twent ysix Gasoline Stations. Also featured is Royal Road Test, a 1967 booklet that documents the wreckage of a Royal typewriter thrown from a speeding car. It’s a treat to leaf through their pages.

"The works sort

of span my whole life as an artist, and everything

I do comes from

the same old mix

master anyway."

Nearby is a 2001 acrylic painting of a craggy mountain peak overlaid with blocky white letters that read: “Clarence Jones 1906-1987 Really Knew How to Sharpen Knives.” At 6 feet high and more than 10 feet across, it’s the exhibition’s key image and Ruscha’s favorite piece in the show. “It’s a big painting that will eventually be part of the collection at the Joslyn,” he says. “I feel like it’s a major work of mine. It’s positioned in the show that you see it right when you walk in. I feel particularly good about that one.”

Ruscha is pleased with how the exhibition turned out, calling it “beautifully curated and designed.” Museum officials and the building itself also made an impression. “I had never really seen the Joslyn, and I was very impressed...it’s a beautiful museum,” he says. “I’m really proud to have my work up there.”  Visit joslyn.org for more information about Ed Ruscha’s Omaha exhibition. The artist’s personal website is edruscha.com.


Ed Ruscha


April 11, 2018


A+C THEATER // STORY BY SARAH WENGERT // PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

IN THE IMMORTAL words of MC Rob Base and

DJ E-Z Rock, “It takes two to make a thing go right.” For Omaha’s Shelterbelt Theatre and SNAP! Productions, that wise 1980s musical maxim proves incredibly true. The two theater companies have shared a performance space (at 3225 California St.) for the past 18 years, with a sibling-like relationship that’s buoyed them both, allowing them to share expenses and audiences alike. According to Michal Simpson, artistic director for SNAP! Productions, who’s been with the organization its entire 25 years, Shelterbelt originally occupied the space and SNAP! was nomadic, performing its shows wherever they could borrow space. “We put our heads together and said, ‘What if SNAP! came into the space and we rotated productions?’ It was convenient timing-wise and also meant we could share some of the expenses, purchasing, and upgrades to make our facility better for both theaters,” Simpson says.

“That money will be used directly for moving costs. After being there for 25 years, you can imagine what we have to move! So, it’s going to get us moved out and into the new space, and hopefully even cover a few items on our wish list,” Wach says.

the HIV/AIDS epidemic and raised money for Nebraska AIDS Project. As HIV/AIDS awareness and funding increased, Simpson says SNAP! broadened its focus to include shows about various social issues in addition to LGBTQ and AIDS-related issues.

Simpson and Wach both believe finding the right space is entirely worth the struggle, because it’s key to maintaining Shelterbelt and SNAP!’s crucial contributions to Omaha’s cultural landscape—which they call “a vital

“We’ve diversified as the times have changed. Along the way we’ve addressed things like ageism, autism, cancer, PTSD, the transgender experience, suicide, and on and on,” Simpson says. “We’re constantly finding that more and more people are becoming braver and coming forward about their individuality and their identity. Since we started out doing plays about gay people and HIV/AIDS long before it was mainstream or acceptable for theaters to do, we wanted to carry that on. As different things have come to the forefront, we’ve tried to address them and foster understanding of these issues and of the people who face them. We’ve always tried to educate people and promote inclusion and understanding.”

IN GOOD COMPANY

SHELTERBELT THEATRE AND SNAP! PRODUCTIONS STICK TOGETHER

The arrangement worked beautifully for 18 years. But now with their building up for sale and out of their price range, the final California Street curtain call will occur after Ellen Struve’s The Dairy Maid-Right closes on August 5, and the Shelterbelt/SNAP! lease expires at the end of August 2018. Shelterbelt and SNAP! are seeking a new home—and both companies definitely want to keep the family together. “We want to continue sharing a space because it’s much like a sibling relationship—very supportive and close,” says Roxanne Wach, Shelterbelt’s executive director. “We share expenses, but we also share resources and help each other out when somebody’s in a bind. I don’t know of any other arts organizations that operate in this way. It’s a really unique relationship. Plus, space is difficult in Omaha, so I think finding two spaces would be nearly impossible.” Indeed, they’ve spent two years diligently searching for a new space to rent, seeking an affordable, optimum location for their theatrical package deal. High rental costs and the need for a space with quite specific functionality have slowed down the relocation process. For those who wish to support these two local cultural gems and their impending move, Wach says both theaters have donation buttons on their websites. She says they’ve raised about $22,000 through a recent fundraiser drive benefiting both theaters—which she calls “a good start.”

part of the theater ecology” in Omaha. Both companies offer opportunities for emerging actors, directors, writers, designers, and crew members, greatly strengthening the local theater community throughout the past 25 years by incubating talent. Additionally, each is unique in the region for its mission—with Shelterbelt’s focus on presenting original, local work and SNAP!’s focus on bolstering inclusion and understanding by featuring underrepresented identities and stories. “[Shelterbelt does] all original theater and Omaha is really lucky to have that. Most cities our size don’t have a theater nurturing new playwrights, giving entry-level actors, directors, and designers a shot at production. Without theaters like Shelterbelt there is no new theater. To have the very talented writing pool we have in Omaha and a stage where their work can be produced is an immense benefit to Nebraska’s cultural landscape,” Wach says. “It’s a really special experience to be part of bringing a new play to the stage for the first time because, in the end, everybody has contributed to bringing this new thing to life. Even as somebody who’s been in theater basically my whole life, I still find it special every time I get to be part of that.”

While Shelterbelt and SNAP! have distinct missions, the companies complement each other well. “We have a real symbiotic relationship that’s been good for both of us in many ways,” Simpson says. Wach completely agrees and looks forward to continuing their important work. “Our missions are very compatible. There’s a slight overlap because we do scripts with diversity and inclusion content, and they’ll occasionally do a new play. So, we play very well together,” Wach says. “We both offer theatergoers a slightly different experience than many are used to, and I really hope we can continue to bring that to Omaha for years to come.””  Wrapping up their stretch at 3225 California St., Shelterbelt’s Three to Beam Up runs April 20-May 13, SNAP’s Lazarus Syndrome runs May 31-June 24, and Shelterbelt’s The Dairy Maid-Right runs July 13-Aug. 5. For more information or to donate in support of the upcoming relocation, visit shelterbelt.org and snapproductions.com.

Simpson says it’s been exciting to watch SNAP! evolve over the years and “adapt to the growing, changing world around us.” SNAP! was originally an acronym for “Supporting Nebraska AIDS Project,” with the intent to do theater that increased awareness about

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 29 //


A+C SCULPTURE // STORY BY LEO ADAM BIGA // PHOTOGRAPHY BY SARAH LEMKE // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

SCULPTOR BENJAMIN VICTOR ON THE FAMOUS PONCA CHIEF

MAY/JUNE

// 30 //

2018


// A+C SCULPTURE //

N CREATING THE larger-than-life like-

ness of Chief Standing Bear for the Nebraska state capitol’s Centennial Mall, sculptor Benjamin Victor felt communion with the late Native American icon. Victor was “captivated” by the principled ways of the Ponca leader, whose eloquent advocacy for his people led to a historic federal court ruling at Fort Omaha that declared the nation’s indigenous peoples to be legally “human” for the first time on May 12, 1879. “He was a true servant-leader,” Victor says of his subject. “The things he wanted were very basic, inalienable human rights everyone should be afforded. He carried himself with dignity even through demeaning treatment. He had a higher moral code of ethics during a time when the laws were not moral. He had the courage to stand up for right through many injustices.” Based in Idaho, the Boise State University professor and resident artist felt connected to Standing Bear through every stage of his artistic process—from preparatory research into the famous Nebraskan, through molding his clay form, to casting the Ponca leader in bronze. “His story and spirit definitely were speaking to me,” Victor says. “As an artist, you try to get that voice through your artwork to speak to viewers who see it. I felt humbled to be working on it. In the sculpture itself, I tried to keep the spirit of Standing Bear alive as much as I tried for an accurate portrait. An accurate portrait is important, but to me a spiritual portrait is just as important. I hope it really inspires other people to study his life. If my work does that, then it’s a success.” The Nebraska Commission on Indian Affairs and Donald Miller Campbell Family Foundation commissioned the 11-foot-tall sculpture, unveiled Oct. 15, 2017. Then, over the winter, a pair of Nebraska state senators (including Sen. Burke Harr of Omaha) introduced a bill to replace the state’s two sculptures—of J. Sterling Morton and William Jennings Bryan—in the U.S. Capitol’s National Statuary Hall with those of Willa

Cather and Standing Bear. A donor, Donald Miller Campbell, pledged funds for a copy to be made of Victor’s Standing Bear work. “To have him as a towering icon in the U.S. Capitol would be important. His story should be on the national scale. He should be known in every school,” Victor says. The artist already has two works in the Hall. One is of Northern Paiute activist Sarah Winnemucca on behalf of the state of Nevada. Anything Native holds profound meaning for Victor, as his late step-grandfather was a member of the Juaneño—a coastal California tribe engulfed by Spanish missions. “It’s always a big deal to me whenever I do a Native American piece that it’s done right and with purpose. I always think of my grandpa when I do them. He liked the images I created of Native Americans with a strong stance and with dignity. That really meant a lot to him. If he’s looking down, he’s really proud of this one.” Victor’s second sculpture in the U.S. Capitol represents Iowa—Norman Borlaug, the father of modern agriculture’s “Green Revolution.” Working from photos, Victor “modified” Standing Bear’s pose “to capture a hint of motion,” as if the chief were moving forward slightly. In an attempt to “capture every detail,” he created folds and the look of heaviness in the blanket draped about his subject. Ornamental details included intricate beadwork, a bear claw necklace, and peace medals. Victor symbolized the chief’s dual roles as warrior and ambassador by having him holding an ax-peace pipe. The bronze is positioned in front of a wall carved with the eloquent words of Standing Bear on trial (as translated by Omaha Native Susette “Bright Eyes” LaFlesche): “That hand is not the color of yours, but if I pierce it, I shall feel pain. If you pierce your hand, you also feel pain. The blood that will flow from mine will be the same color as yours. I am a man. The same God made us both.” The project selection committee for the state capitol’s Centennial Mall learned about

“ H E W A S A T R U E S E R V A N T- L E A D E R . THE THINGS HE WANTED WERE VERY BASIC, INALIENABLE HUMAN RIGHTS E VE R Y O N E S H O U L D B E A F F O R D E D .” -BENJAMIN VICTOR

// 32 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

Victor from George Neubert (director of the Flatwater Folk Art Museum in Brownville, Nebraska), who befriended the artist when he did a commission for Peru State College, where his bronze of a hulking football player adorns the Oak Bowl. Although Victor originally hails from California, he developed deep roots in the Great Plains while attending Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota, where he discovered his love of sculpture. “When I picked up clay the first time in college, the medium just clicked for me,” he says. “I felt like the concepts I was trying to get across were very readily expressed in sculpture. I really like the physicality of sculpture, how you move the clay with your hands and manipulate it. I like everything about it. I also work in marble—so I do the subtractive process of carving, the additive process of clay work, and the replacement process of bronze.” He was still in school when he landed his first big commission—for the Aberdeen airport. “I had a family to support,” he says. “I worked at the YMCA part-time, took odd jobs, and went to school full time. I was on food stamps and rental assistance. We had nothing. To get the commission was really amazing because you can struggle your whole life as an artist and never get a commission like that.” Soon thereafter came the Winnemucca project. Demand for his work has never ceased. “I never thought I’d get the opportunity to make it on my own in my dream field and career,” he says. “It’s a true American success story. I still don’t take it for granted. Every day I get to do this, I feel very blessed. And then to do something inspiring like Standing Bear. What a dream commission to commemorate him and everything he stood for.” Upon graduating, Victor was a Northern State teacher and resident artist before Boise State courted him. “They gave me a beautiful studio space and gallery. It’s been a great home,” he says, adding that he maintains close ties with his former colleagues in South Dakota. “I’ve got so many friends there that are just like family.” Back at his Boise studio, his studio life intersects with students, patrons, and his three children. Meanwhile, he continues to always keep his ears open to the spirits of his subjects.  Visit benjaminvictor.com for more information.


Freedom

FROM ALCOHOL & OPIATES

M e d i c a t i o n A s s i s t e d Tr e a t m e n t

Do you suffer from acute pain from: Illness, surgery, a serious injury or accident? Do you experience chronic pain from: Arthritis, back or neck pain,headaches, herniated disks, fibromyalgia, hip or knee pain?

Confidential Comprehensive Outpatient

402.552.8890 / igotsober.com

Don’t let your pain keep you from enjoying life. Discover how to recover!

#1 Female Hormone Replacement Clinic!

John Cook, MD

Dave Johnson, PA

Rafal Krejza, DO

Kevin Balter, MD

Matthew Nadler, MD

Midwest Pain Clinics offers a range of treatment options to help manage your daily pains. Our providers have over 50 years combined experience in treating many types of pain.

See how our providers can improve your quality of life! 402.881.3638 | 13939 GOLD CIRCLE STE 100, OMAHA ALLUREHEALTHMED.COM

Voted FIRST PLACE Five Years in a Row!

402-391-PAIN (7246) | 825 N. 90th St. Omaha, NE | contact@midwestpainclinics.com

Spring & Summer Fashions you’ll love!

Thank You for Your Confidence and Voting Us

Best Hair Salon again in 2018.

20% off

one item Ex Brighton

& sale items

Voted #1 Since 1992 12025 Pacific Street, Omaha, Nebraska

Vote For Us As “Best Hair Salon” For 2019! Quick Vote Code: 51415 Phone (402) 330-5660 | Fax (402) 330-5662 | creativehairdesign.com

402.991.4477

84th & 1 st St. / Downtown Papillion Open Tues-Thur 10-6PM, Fri 10-7PM, Sat 10-5PM, Sun-Mon CLOSED

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 33 //


SKYDIVING

FEATURE // STORY BY LISA LUKECART // PHOTOGRAPHY BY KEITH BINDER // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

WITH FAMILY

From left: pilot Rick Buesing, Greg Hladik, Kenneth “Sonny” Bader, and Lisa Lukecart // 34 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


IF AT FIRST YOU DON’T SUCCEED, DON’T GO SKYDIVING

Scan the Table of Contents page with the LayAR app for expanded content. MAY/JUNE 2018

// 35 //


// FEATURE //

I COULD DIE.

Endless possibilities swirl along with the growling engine of the Cessna 182 widebody airplane. At 6,000 feet and climbing, Kenneth “Sonny” Bader, 65, yawns. Plunging to the ground at a high velocity doesn’t enter his mind. Instead, he contemplates a long nap. After all, Sonny has 6,500 jumps under his feet. He is no rookie. His son, Travis, 29, moves gracefully in the small space, unhooking his seatbelt and slapping a black helmet over his head. The aircraft’s interior is tight, allowing enough room for only four people and the pilot. Just a week before, I sat across from both men sipping a cup of coffee at Starbucks. Skydiving had never been on my bucket list. Why would I want to jump out of a perfectly good plane? “It’s a fascination. It’s beautiful. It’s an incredible experience,” Travis explains. “It’s just you and the air, fast-paced, and then you have the serene, quiet canopy ride.” Sonny insists the only way to really know what it’s like is to come out and try it. Newcomers could either jump alone or tandem (with a certified skydiver). Yeah, right. And yet…a desire to leap into the unknown appealed to me. A week later, fear paralyzes my mind as I fill out forms, basically signing my life away. I watch a brief video where an old bearded skydiving legend warns about all the ways I could get injured, maimed, or die. // 36 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

The Lincoln Sport Parachute Club members calm me down. “No one has died from it in the club,” Sonny says. He suspects the last skydiving death in Omaha occurred almost 40 years ago, and modern technology has decreased the odds. Sonny, a Federal Aviation Administration Master Rigger, checks, repairs, and modifies each pack. I trust his skill as the airplane climbs in elevation to the drop zone. Tandem master Greg Hladik is sitting behind me in the plane, so close his chest vibrates against my back as he talks. “We are in this together,” Hladik reminds me. Screaming, throwing up, or clinging are all a part of the tandem game. With 300 tandems and 1,260 jumps to his credit, Hladik reminds people to slow down their minds, take it all in, and enjoy the ride. “I love it. It’s a thrill every time,” he says. Hladik, a paramedic with the Omaha Fire Department for the past 11 years, is known for his state and national record-setting wingsuit formations. He begins the process of hooking us together as I make the mistake of glancing out the window to watch the increasingly distant plains below. The pilot, Rick Buesing, turns around with a confident smile as we ascend to 10,000 feet. “Are you ready?” Sonny asks.

“No, but I’m okay,” I reply. The thought of plummeting into the deep blue sky has my stomach dropping before even approaching the exit door. Sonny’s first taste of free-falling came right after high school in 1970 when he joined the Army. An airborne recruiter roped him into a parachuting opportunity. Stand up. Hook up. Go. As Sonny exited the door, he couldn’t believe the rush. It was a shot of adrenaline he had never experienced before. Sonny became hooked, a junkie. “I jumped many times after that. I got high off the opportunity to get high,” Sonny says laughing. For three years, Sonny was active duty with the 82nd Airborne Division. He later trained in long-range surveillance with the Nebraska National Guard for 25 years until he retired as an E8 master sergeant. After the Army, he attended college to become a car mechanic. At an Omaha Royals game, Sonny saw a group of skydivers jump and realized he missed the excitement. Soon after, he became involved with the Omaha Skydivers for two years. When the group disbanded, Sonny joined the Lincoln Sport Parachute Club in 1979. He earned experience in tandem, demonstration, and static line jumping. Plus, Sonny gained an entire new family that loved leaping from planes as much as he did.


Writer Lisa Lukecart descends to the Nebraska soil during a tandem jump on March 9.

On the side, Sonny still taught skydiving ground classes at home every Friday and Saturday night. He used his then-3-year-old son, Travis, to show students the perfect arch. Sonny would hold Travis in the palms of his hands, throw him up, and have him assume the position. Travis and his sister, Toni, would jump off the coffee table to demonstrate a tuck-and-roll. Toni made about 20 jumps before she discovered boys, but Travis was born to rock the airwaves. “I was more nervous handing him a set of car keys than handing him a parachute,” Sonny recalls. Travis, then 16, had the wildest nightmares before his big tandem. “There is nothing natural about launching yourself from an airplane. Don’t do skydiving if it doesn’t make you nervous,” Travis says. “It has to have that fear factor. You are not shying away from fears, but embracing it.” Travis dived his first tandem when he was just 16, following with a solo when he turned 21. Travis, a U.S. postal worker, became a static line instructor on the side. “That’s what I do for money, but skydiving is what I do for a living,” he says.

Travis watched his father, a professional exhibition-rated skydiver, when he participated in numerous ground crews. His dream was to do a demonstration jump with his father. Travis had his chance two years ago, after receiving his own PRO rating from the U.S. Parachute Association. Both would jump into TD Ameritrade for a military tribute event. “Are you ready?” Sonny asked his son. “I’ve been waiting for this moment my entire life,” Travis remembers replying. He now has 750 jumps to his credit, plus a PRO exhibition rating and a D license like his father. In addition, Travis and his father compete in skydiving events such as sports or zone accuracy. Sports accuracy is almost like a human dartboard. The person who lands closest to the bulls-eye wins. “It’s like hitting the top of this coffee cup with your foot,” Sonny says. Sonny, a 10-year accuracy champion, has had a two-year dry spell. The gold medal at the Cornhusker Games this year went to his son, but at least the tradition continued in the family. Travis now aspires to compete on the national level and is training to get his tandem license. Sonny is working on an instructor rating for scuba diving. But it is obvious that both love their monthly meetings and weekend jumps with the club.

The Lincoln Sport Parachute Club skydivers, 60 strong and welcoming of new members, love seeing other people safely enjoy skydiving and the friendships that come with it. Sonny bursts out laughing remembering one woman’s enthusiasm. She waved and even kissed the cameraman. After 30 seconds of freefall, the chute opened up, and she said, “I think I just had an airgasm.” It can be expensive. For example, a tandem will run someone $250. Add a video, and it can run an additional $125. But join the club, and a dive will only run about $20. (Annual dues cost $125. Members are also required to belong to the U.S. Parachute Association and have made at least five jumps.) Travis slides the door of the plane open with a grin as he, along with his father, crawls out on the ledge. A blast of frigid 100-plus mph wind rushes into the compact area. Hladik throws me on his lap and pushes me toward the edge. With my legs hanging over the side, I have second thoughts. Hladik rocks twice...and just like that, we dive. I could explain the absolute cool and chaotic insanity of the free fall, the hushed beautiful stillness of the canopy, or the relief of softly hitting the ground. But, like Sonny says, come out and experience it for yourself.  Visit skydivelspc.com for more information about the Lincoln Sport Parachute Club.

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 37 //


FEATURE // STORY BY KIM REINER // PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

Ultramarathoner Kaci Lickteig

A N D

MAY/JUNE

// 38 //

2018


From left: Christy Nielsen and Kaci Lickteig


// FEATURE //

She was leading the women runners, with a half-mile left in the race when there was a gut-wrenching pop, something she describes as feeling almost like a muscle popping off bone. THERE ARE RUNNERS. There are ultrarunners. And then there’s Kaci Lickteig.

Nicknamed “the Pixie Ninja” by her friends, Lickteig has earned her place among the most competitive ultrarunners in the world. Ultrarunning is the sport of racing distances beyond 26.2 miles, the length of a marathon. Typical distances include 50 kilometers (31.07 miles), 50 miles, and 100 miles. Lickteig has won some of the most grueling races in the sport, including the Western States 100-Miler. For that win, she set the third-fastest time in the race’s 40-plus-year history, 17:57:59. Her passion for the sport and mental toughness is part gift, part curse. Fatigue won’t slow her; cracked ribs won’t stop her. But in October 2017, she faced an injury that she could not ignore: two stress fractures in her pelvis. She’s still working toward a full recovery with the help of fellow runner Christy Nielsen. Nielsen is a physical therapist specializing in runners and endurance athletes. Nielsen and Lickteig became friends at the start of Lickteig’s running career. Together, they’re working on returning her to the sport at which she excels. Lickteig wasn’t a natural with running. Growing up in the small town of Dannebrog, Nebraska, she couldn’t finish her first race in

// 40 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

high school without walking. But, training alongside her mom, running became fun. And eventually, it became a lifestyle. She ran marathons in college, and following graduation in 2012, she ran her first ultramarathon, a 50-kilometer trail run. She won. Her next race was a 100-miler. With encouragement from Nielsen, Lickteig qualified for the Olympic Trials Marathons. Hiring coach Jason Koop in 2014 helped propel her to elite status in ultras. In 2016, UltraRunning Magazine named her the Female Ultrarunner of the Year for winning seven races, beating all runners—male and female—in three of them. Miguel Ordorica became Lickteig’s running partner around the time she started her ultrarunning. Ordorica recalls a marathondistance training run with Lickteig nearly five years ago, when she fell and cracked some ribs at mile seven. She kept going, finishing the final 19 miles. “She’s different from most runners,” he says. “She really doesn’t stop. Most runners stop for bottles of water or to chat.” That nonstop drive caught up to her in 2017 at the GOATz 50K at Hitchcock Nature Center in Honey Creek, Iowa. The signs of an injury were present at the start of the race: pain in her knee and groin, tightness in her back, and soreness in her hip flexors. She popped some Aleve and thought, “It’s only 30 miles.”

Usually 30 miles would be easy for her, but she wasn’t adequately rested. She’d barely allowed herself recovery time from running the Western States 100-mile race in June before she started training again. Her body was exhausted. She was leading the women runners with a half-mile left in the race when there was a gut-wrenching pop, something she describes as feeling almost like a muscle popping off bone. A physical therapist herself, she had no idea what she did to her body, but she could barely walk. Two days later, it was confirmed: Lickteig had two stress fractures in her pelvis, along with an assortment of other injuries. Stress fractures, especially in the lower extremities, are common for distance runners, as are knee and Achilles tendon injuries. A stress fracture like hers was rare. “Tensile fractures are something only 2 percent of [the] population gets,” Nielsen explains. “The combo of her back being tight and her knees being so swollen, something had to give. It was her pelvis.” She knows first-hand about the pressure athletes put on themselves. Truly trained athletes, she says, have a hard time listening to their bodies and taking a day off. She was that kind of runner, racing competitively for more than two decades and qualifying for three Olympics Trials. “It only took me 20 years to tell the difference from being over-trained and being tired from a workout,” says Nielsen. “And that knowledge is so worth it when you get it.”


// ADVENTURE //

Lickteig’s recovery started with extreme restrictions. She could barely stand to get her foot in a pant leg. She could do no weight-bearing activities for the first four weeks. Then, using crutches, she’d walk three miles with Ordorica. She did upper body workouts, strength training, and stabilizing exercises under Nielsen’s supervision first at OrthoNebraska and then at ATI Physical Therapy. Lickteig also works as a physical therapist at ATI. On the 89th day of recovery, Nielsen had Lickteig run on an antigravity treadmill for 35 minutes at 65 percent body weight. “I still was able to run. I cried. I cried at minute 17 because I was able to run,” recalls Lickteig. Four months after her injury, Lickteig has started training for the Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run in June. With newfound appreciation for the limitations of the human body, she concedes she may run fewer hours each week and add more rest days.

THANK YOU

for voting us 1st place 13 straight years!

Set ting a Standard in Collision Repair 402.558.3500 Corner of 50th & South Saddlecreek

402-502-8757 Southwest Corner of 144th & Industrial Rd

402.502.5511 Southwest corner of 120th & Maple

402.933.9400 Corner of Washington & Lincoln, Papillion

MECHANICAL REPAIR 402.991.2848 / Southwest Corner of 120th & Maple

“We’d Rather Be The Best Than Apologize for Anything Less.” w w w. d i n g m a n s . c o m

Home Builders Blitz June 4 - 8, 2018

BEFORE 2017 Home Builders Blitz

A pelvic fracture or two won’t stop her. The Western States race is Lickteig’s dream race, according to Ordorica: “She wouldn’t miss Western States unless she had a leg fall off.”  The 2018 Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run takes place June 23-24 in California (wser.org). For more information about the Omaha physical therapists helping Kaci Lickteig to recover, visit orthonebraska.com and atipt.com. AFTER 2017 Home Builders Blitz

At Habitat Omaha, we believe in the power of revitalization. During our annual Home Builders Blitz, hundreds of professional builders and their companies partner with us to replace empty lots and blighted houses with safe, stable homes. This year they will build 10 Habitat Omaha homes that will be purchased by local families. Because of this partnership, ten families will have the opportunity for a better life. Thank you to the builders who are helping us transform neighborhoods one block at a time.│habitatomaha.org MAY/JUNE 2018

// 41 //


five

NT

IL

ON

P E H

ODERN ORE M T GO OS

RA

T

FEATURE // INTRO BY DOUG MEIGS // STORY BY CLAIRE BROMM // PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

O

AH

WE

M

M

TH

FRO

parks

ST

n at i o n a l AT O T H E PA C I F I C

MAY/JUNE

// 42 //

2018

R O N


Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area, en route to Yellowstone National Park


// FEATURE //

This is the story of visiting five of America’s most iconic national parks en route from Omaha to the Pacific Northwest and the region formerly known as Oregon Territory.

“you have died of dysentery.”

Those tragic words stopped short the travels of many digital novices learning the history of the Oregon Trail. The classic computer game, The Oregon Trail, introduced a generation of youths to pioneer trails in elementary school classrooms during the ’80s and ’90s. Now those kids are all grown-up with children—and family road trips to plan—of their own.

Today, Omaha remains uniquely situated as a trailhead for cross-country travelers heading to the Pacific Northwest. This geographical truism has held since before Nebraska became a state. The Oregon Trail ushered an estimated 350,000 settlers westward from the 1830s through 1870s; many settlers joined the main Oregon Trail with Omaha as their starting point. The Omaha area was also an important jumping off point for the Mormon Trail in 1846-1868 and California Gold Rush in 1848-1855. Railroads, highways, and interstates eventually cut the oxen-driven covered wagon journey from six months to a few days on the road

// 44 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


Badlands National Park

with leisure breaks along the way. Although overland routes exist for history-minded travelers to follow pioneer trails (to see wheel ruts carved by long-ago wagon trains and visit pioneer landmarks such as Chimney Rock, Fort Laramie, Soda Springs, etc.), this is not that sort of travel story. This is the story of visiting five of America’s most iconic national parks en route from Omaha to the Pacific Northwest and the region formerly known as Oregon Territory. Oregon Territory once included not only the current state of Oregon, but also Washington, Idaho, and parts of Montana and Wyoming.

Although each national park is a destination in itself, Omaha Magazine’s Bill Sitzmann managed to visit Badlands, Glacier, Yellowstone, Olympic, and Redwood national parks in a 16-day-stretch of driving and camping with his wife and their two kids. The times have changed (with the proliferation of electronic screens and paved roads), but the route from Omaha to the Pacific Northwest remains an adventure. Here is the Sitzmann family’s national park route with context for other would-be travelers planning their own journeys.

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 45 //


// FEATURE //

Redwood National Park


Olympic National Park

>> badlands national park << (south dakota) 452 miles from Omaha to Badlands National Park (about 6 hours and 20 minutes, driving non-stop) The first stop on the Sitzmann family road trip was Badlands National Park. A huge storm was brewing when they arrived. Park rangers were warning visitors about a potential tornado. After learning of the weather conditions, the Sitzmanns drove through the park on Highway 240 Badlands Loop Road (which takes about an hour without stops, two hours with a few stops at scenic overlooks) and decided to spend the night in Rapid City, about 60 miles west of the park, on the edge of the Black Hills and Mount Rushmore. ABOUT THE PARK: South Dakota’s badlands are made of rugged geologic deposits that contain one of the world’s richest fossil beds. Ancient rhinos, horses, and saber-toothed cats once roamed this 244,000-acre landscape. Its name comes from the Lakota people, who called the area “Mako Sica” (which translates directly to “Land Bad”) because of the exposed terrain and lack of water.

Established on Jan. 29, 1939, Badlands National Park has kept visitors entertained with various activities: hiking, bird watching, auto-touring, and camping. Visitors are also drawn to the natural beauty of the steep canyons, unique rock formations, and the tallgrass prairie. Parkgoers delight in wildlife viewing opportunities—bison, bighorn sheep, prairie dogs, and ferrets call this area home. During summer, the park offers guided hikes, lectures, activities, and evening programs accompanied by park rangers. While the park is open 24/7 year-round, guests should be cautious of summer thunderstorms and tornadoes that can develop unexpectedly. Snowfall is a concern in winter; the area typically gets 12-24 inches of snow during winter months. Radical precipitation changes are especially common in summer, with June being the wettest month and December and January the driest months. Because drastic weather changes are common, the park recommends visitors dress in layers and always have hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, and water handy.

>> yellowstone national park << (wyoming) 1,014 miles from Omaha to Yellowstone National Park (about 15 hours and 16 minutes driving non-stop). 1,054 miles from Omaha to Yellowstone via Badlands (about 15 hours and 52 minutes, driving non-stop) Wildlife watching was a major highlight of the Sitzmann family’s time in Yellowstone National Park. Sitzmann says he enjoyed being able to pull over on the side of the road to watch the massive bison herd. The park estimates that over 4,000 bison lived in the area in 2017. The family also saw a mother black bear with cub 50 yards away from their vehicle while leaving the so-called heart of “Bear Country.” ABOUT THE PARK: Yellowstone National Park was established on March 1, 1872, making it the world’s first national park. This park is seated on top of a volcanic hot spot and spans almost 3,500 square miles. Located primarily in Wyoming, the park also spreads into Montana and Idaho and contains canyons, rivers, forests, hot springs, and geysers (including the famous Old Faithful).

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 47 //


Lake McDonald, Glacier National Park

// 48 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


// FEATURE //

The park is home to hundreds of bears, wolves, bison, elk, antelope, and more. Visitors can expect a day filled with bicycling, hiking, boating, fishing, horseback riding, llama packing, camping, or simply watching wildlife. While the park has lots of activities for warmer months, it’s also accommodating to winter travelers. Guests can snowmobile, snow ski, snowshoe, or take a snowcoach tour. When it comes to preparing for the weather, visitors should be aware of potential thunderstorms during the summer. Because of the park’s high elevation, even in summertime, temperatures can drop below freezing after sundown. Winter months bring heavy snowfall and sub-zero temperatures. Guests going in the spring or fall should be aware that snow is also common during these months.

>> Glacier National Park << (Montana) 1,233 miles from Omaha to Glacier National Park (about 19 hours, driving non-stop). 1,473 miles from Omaha to Glacier National Park via Yellowstone and Badlands (about 23 hours and 39 minutes, driving non-stop) Next on the Sitzmann family’s travel itinerary was Glacier National Park. Sitzmann especially enjoyed hiking to Lake McDonald, the largest lake in the park. The area around the lake was extremely isolated and felt exceptionally peaceful, he says. The family also found other pleasant walking trails, which wasn’t surprising considering the park’s more than 700 miles of trails. If the family makes their way back to the park, they would like to see the Going-to-the-Sun Road, which was shut down due to a fire hazard during their visit. The road is the main east-to-west thoroughfare winding past spectacular mountain and glacier vistas (all but 10 miles of the road are closed during winter). ABOUT THE PARK: Glacier National Park is commonly known as “The Crown of the Continent.” The park was established May 11, 1910. It holds the headwaters for streams that flow into the Pacific Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico, and Hudson Bay. The 1,583-square-mile area is located in Montana’s Rocky Mountains and contains glacier-covered peaks, gorgeous lakes, and valleys. The park offers a variety of activities to do throughout the year. In the summer, guests can embark on ranger-led programs such as the Native America Speaks program and outdoor education program. Guests can take beautiful hikes and watch wildlife. Bike rides, camping, fishing, and boating are also popular in warmer months. For the winter, visitors are welcome to join rangers on a guided snowshoe walk. Cross-country skiing is another popular winter attraction. Precipitation should be considered when planning a visit; the east side of the park is considerably more dry and windy than the park’s west side. To prepare, the park recommends that visitors dress in layers, even in the summer.

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 49 //


SECTION // NAMES

Thank You for Voting

Ricky Newton Best Hair Colorist

// FEATURE //

>> olympic national park << (washington) 1,746 miles from Omaha to Olympic National Park (about 27 hours, driving non-stop). 2,210 miles from Omaha to Olympic National Park via Yellowstone, Badlands, and Glacier (about 36 hours, driving non-stop) Olympic National Park was next for the family. Sitzmann says it was his favorite of all the parks that they visited on the twoweek trip. Diverse ecosystems range from old-growth forests to glacier-clad summits and temperate rainforests along the Pacific Ocean. The family found an isolated threemile hike that they enjoyed because of the peace and quiet. The park is also situated on a peninsula, further providing peace and quiet to the area. “I could easily spend two weeks in this park,” Sitzmann says.

4 0 2 . 5 1 5 . 4 7 8 5 / r i c k y n e w t o n j r. c o m 2567 S 171st Ct, Omaha, NE 68130

Lab testing, weight-loss solutions and a variety of aesthetic services as well.

5362 S. 72nd ST / Ralston, NE 68127 / 402.315.3600 mi dw e st mo de rn m e d ic ine . c om C h e c k u s o u t o n Fac ebook

// 50 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

ABOUT THE PARK: Encompassing nearly 1 million acres in land area, Olympic National Park is situated on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula. Visitors will find different levels of precipitation, elevation, and ecosystems throughout. Mount Olympus is the park’s highest point at 7,980 feet. Rainforests line more than 70 miles of rugged Pacific coastline. Since its establishment on June 29, 1938, this national park has kept visitors entertained with the prospect of tide-pooling (i.e., looking at the critters and sea life revealed as the tide recedes), backpacking, hiking, fishing, boating, wildlife viewing, and rock climbing. Animals in this area consist of marmots, salmon, goats, elk, deer, whales, bears, and more. Or, sit back and take in the breathtaking scenery. When planning a trip to Olympic National Park in the spring, be prepared for cool and mild temperatures, rain, and even snow. The summer months are the most popular time to visit (though thunderstorms are not unusual). Parts of the park close during colder months; some campgrounds remain open year-round, while winter activities include snowboarding, snowshoeing, cross-country and downhill skiing, and tubing. The coastal beaches remain relatively snow-free and are open to visitors year-round.


>> redwood national park << (california) 1,765 miles from Omaha to Redwood National Park (about 28 hours, driving non-stop). 2,691 miles from Omaha to Redwood National Park, via Olympic, Glacier, Yellowstone, and Badlands parks (about 44 hours, driving non-stop) After driving south along the Oregon Coast Highway, the Sitzmanns arrived at the last park on their travel itinerary, Redwood National Park. “The cool thing about Redwood is that— because the trees are so big—it could be raining and you wouldn’t even feel it,” Sitzmann says. The family could only stay one night here due to the looming end of their vacation. Tackling five different national parks separated by such long distances meant that they couldn’t spend much time in any one single destination. Even so, they made the best of it: “The most rewarding thing, always, is family time,” he says. ABOUT THE PARK: While Redwood National Park is known for tall trees—the tallest on Earth, actually—the park is home to more than arboreal behemoths. Established on Oct. 2, 1968, this park also includes prairies, woodlands, rivers, and almost 40 miles of rugged coastline. Visitors can walk, drive, or bike their way through the park. There are more than 200 miles of trails in Redwood National Park. When it comes to wildlife, there are mountain lions, bobcats, deer, elk, black bear, and coyotes on land. On the seaside, there are several species of whale, porpoise, sea lions, elephant seals, and seabirds.

for 14 years

Temperatures remain relatively consistent yearround at Redwood National Park, ranging from 40 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Winters bring cooler weather and lots of precipitation. Summer months bring heavy fog along the coast, while inland conditions are usually warmer and sunnier. The summer is also the only time guests can take ranger-led kayak tours along the Smith River. Park management cautions visitors to bring rain gear, wear layers, and use sturdy walking shoes as the rainforest and coast can be slippery.

>> homeward bound << (california to omaha) 1,764 miles from Redwood National Park to Omaha (about 27 hours, driving non-stop). Total round-trip mileage: 4,455 miles (about 71 hours, driving non-stop) CONCLUSION: The Sitzmann family road trip took a total of 16 days, with one or two days in each national park. They didn’t have time to linger as looming work obligations restricted the parents’ schedule. A direct interstate route via I-80 brought them safely home from California. Their journey on the postmodern Oregon Trail came to a close back where they started—in Omaha. 

11840 Nicholas St. | Omaha, NE 68154 | SmilesofOmaha.com

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 51 //


MOTORSPORT // STORY BY GREG JERRETT PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

Mean Green Pulling Machine


MAY/JUNE 2018

// 53 //


// MOTORSPORT //

nan tu ck e t slayr i de HORSEPOWER, INNOVATION, AND fami-

ly-friendly fun are at the heart of truck and tractor pulling. The popular motorsport evolved from the agrarian tradition of horse pulling, in which farmers urged their teams to pull sleds along a dirt track while friends and neighbors piled on rocks until the horses could pull no more. The team pulling the farthest won.

“We took a few years off until Bret decided he wanted to build a diesel truck puller,” he says. “We had been pulling in the local county fairs for quite some time, but just with our stock trucks. We wanted to step it up and built a dedicated, professional puller.” And so, Nantucket Slayride was born—a diesel-powered homage to New England’s whaling industry.

Today, it is the innovation of truck and tractor owners on display, and while the bragging rights are the same, everything from the horsepower to the weighted sleds is mechanized. Modified tractors and trucks pull a sled designed to increase its resistance up to 50,000 pounds, says local promoter Kurt Schanou. Vehicles accelerate from zero to 40 mph and back within 325 feet, often less. Horsepower levels of top trucks can be well north of 1,000, and revolutions per minute can approach 10,000. “It’s like a tug-o-war of machinery and engineering. The reward is more pride than financial,” according to Schanou, who says that competitors work hard to support the sport and build machines capable of pulling a Greyhound bus. “For most, it’s largely still a hobby that they have grown to love.” Erik Falk is the 39-year-old co-owner of Rainbow Glass and Supply Inc. in Papillion and a member of Nebraska Bush Pullers. The Springfield resident has been a fan of power pulling since he was a kid. “My passion with truck pulling and motorsports in general started early,” Erik says. “My dad had the same passion and took my brother Bret and I to every motorsport event around the area.” The Falk brothers started drag racing in high school and continued until Erik and his wife, Megan, decided to have children.

// 54 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

Erik learned pretty quickly to modify his truck and driving style for better results. Before long, he was justifying three-hour road trips for a minute on the track with sweet victory. “After we figured out what parts to run and what not to, we started having a lot of success,” he says. “I was running two classes with the power pullers. [Various pull classes range from lightweight tractors to various classifications that include trucks, semis, and even super-modified tractors packed with airplane engines]. We were 2014 points runner-up in both classes, 2015 points champion in both, 2016 Bush Pullers runner-up, 2017 Bush Pullers champion, and 2017 Bush Pullers Puller of the Year.” Erik’s most notable win was at the 2017 Cornhusker Classic indoor pull. “We were out-gunned, but everything went our way, and we snuck in a victory,” he says.

“My dad came up with the name way back when we were drag racing,” Erik says. “Whalers on small boats would harpoon a whale and just hang on for a ‘Nantucket sleigh ride.’ I thought it was a unique name, changed the spelling, and put it on the truck.” Nantucket Slayride began as a stock 1973 Chevy with a 3/4-ton frame and a 1984 cab. Erik amusingly remembers his first pull in 2012 with The Nebraska Power Pullers at an event in Wahoo. “My first time out, I was probably overconfident and thought I was going to show these guys how it should be done. I remember revving the engine and letting the clutch out and then not really going anywhere too quick. The tires were spinning and not hooked to the dirt. I think we got last place that time.”

Today, Nantucket Slayride bears little resemblance to the unmodified version. “The truck chassis is designed to put as much weight forward as possible to help the front tires dig,” he says. “The weight of the sled takes care of the back tires. The motor is based off a big block Chevy, and out of a National Hot Rod Association pro stock car. It has been reworked to 485 cubic inches and limited to a single carburetor.” Erik says power pulling is worth every minute and dollar spent on it: “We have a great time as a family and have met lifelong friends along the way. Who could ask for a better hobby?”  Visit propulling.com, nebushpullers.com, and outlawpulling.com for updated schedules and events in the region.


Now Offering Grooming! Mention this ad for deals

Boarding • Daycare • Grooming 13706 C St. Omaha, NE 68144 402.933.4007 BarkAvenueOmaha.com

A N E W L O CA L WAY t o T i c ke t Yo u r E v e n t

Bench

Arts for All

Intro to Woodworking May 12th and June 9th

Spring Arts Classes for Adults A Taste of the Arts Summer Camp

Table Grace Ministries

Nebraska Invitat ional Dance Fest ival

Mother’s Day Brunch May 13th seating starts at 9:00 am

June 1st - 3rd

Prairie Crossing Vineyard Winery

Bodega Victoriana Winery Wedding Barn

Mother’s Day Brunch and Live Music by Jessica Errett 11:30 am to 4:00 pm

Wine Tasting for 2

Urban Abbey

Creighton BusinessEt hics

Interfaith Speed Dialogue June 7th

Emerging Leaders Trivia Night at Benson Brewery May 17th

Sweet Cases Car Show

Business Ethics Luncheon at TD Ameritrade Stadium June 5th

June 9th More events coming to Local Stubs Omaha’s destination to support local events.

> Localstubs.com

402.342.2885 bigbrainomaha.com

Vote us Best of Omaha 2011 Go to voteomaha.com

402.342.2885 bigbrainomaha.com 1123 Jackson St, Omaha, NE 68102 16920 Wright Plaza #162 MAY/JUNE 2018

// 55 //


GEN O // STORY BY TAMSEN BUTLER // PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK


Katie Werkmeister’s Backwoods Philosophy TAKE A LOOK at 19-year-old Katie Werkmeister scaling an indoor climbing wall, trudging along happily on a backcountry hike, or scrambling along on a bouldering trip, and you’d think she has been adventuring her entire life. But that’s not the case. “I led a really bland life before college,” she admits. Growing up in Kearney, she yearned for a “bigger city with more culture.” In Omaha, however, she ended up on a path to some of the nation’s most remote locales. “College really opened my perspective to get outside,” she says, adding that an outdoor leadership class during her first semester of freshman year at the University of Nebraska-Omaha changed her life. “We learned about LNT [Leave No Trace] and backpacking to get ready for a trip to the Badlands in South Dakota, where we took turns guiding and leading the group.”

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 57 //


SECTION // NAMES

THE PATH OF PERSISTENCE Scientific discoveries that lead to accurate diagnosis means answering endless questions. Our mission - trusted outcomes. To never stop searching, questioning and testing.

THE SCIENCE OF TRUST streck.com

// 58 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


// GEN O //

She learned how to read a map and lead a group through sometimes unforgiving terrain. She also learned that she loved being outside (even when the going gets tough): “Backpacking is sometimes—honestly—not fun, but when you get to where you’re going it makes it all worth it.”

ARE YOU READY

FOR SUMMER?

The philosophy of Leave No Trace had a profound impact on Werkmeister. She continues to be amazed and appalled by mankind’s negative consequences on the natural environment—particularly by those people who negatively impact nature while themselves trying to enjoy the outdoors. Even around the UNO campus, she notices where students create worn walking paths in spots where people are not meant to walk. Werkmeister fully endorses the idea of leaving no trace when out in nature, whether that’s around a college campus or in remote spots only accessible by backpacking for days. Climbing was a natural next step for this adventurer. She was a complete beginner when she started in 2016. “Everybody starts at the lowest point. There’s something exciting about being at the lowest point because there’s always somewhere to go from there,” she says.

Koca Chiropractic can get you on the right track to keep your energy up and experience life to the fullest.

THE FIRST STEP IS TO MAKE HEALTH YOUR #1 PRIORITY 11420 Blondo St, Ste. 102 402.496.4570 www.YourFamilysChiropractor.com

Werkmeister admits that climbing was not easy in the beginning and didn’t come to her naturally at first. “I went in really weak,” says the young woman who had received a pacemaker in her heart in 2015. “Sometimes my heart would randomly stop beating and I would pass out,” she says, referring to her health pre-pacemaker. As a result, one side of her body is weaker than the other, which has made climbing difficult. But she’s not the kind of person to give up on something because it’s difficult. Nowadays she’s an active and strong climber, both indoors and out in the wild. Currently working at the UNO Outdoor Venture Center, she enjoys helping beginning climbers discover their own strength. “Not many people know it’s open to the public,” she says, urging people to check out the climbing wall even if they aren’t UNO students. Werkmeister and other staff can help climbing novices learn everything they need, even if they have never climbed before. As Werkmeister says: when you start from the bottom, you can only go up from there.  Visit unomaha.edu for information about the climbing wall and excursions with the Outdoor Venture Center. MAY/JUNE 2018

// 59 //


PROFILE // STORY BY KARA SCHWEISS // PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

D I VIN A B U G SC

Jon Schuetz Redefines Disability with QLI WHEN JON SCHUETZ moved to southwest

Florida from the Sioux City area in 2006, he leased a house four blocks from the beach to enjoy everything the ocean had to offer, like swimming, kayaking, and snorkeling. “Scuba diving—that was always something I wanted to get into. But I never took advantage of it, being that close to the ocean when I was down in Florida,” he says. “I had to get certification in Omaha, Nebraska, where there are no oceans nearby.” In 2016, Schuetz finally went scuba diving in the open ocean off Cayman Brac. The experience was more than just a fulfillment of a decade-old desire. Schuetz’s time in Florida had been cut short after a 2007 motorcycle accident resulted in a spinal cord injury and paralysis. Scuba diving seemed like an impossible wish in the weeks after his accident, when Schuetz didn’t know how he’d be able to brush his teeth, dress himself, and get around independently as a quadriplegic. After a total of five weeks of intensive and acute care in a Florida hospital followed by five weeks of acute care at a Sioux City hospital, Schuetz transferred to Quality Living Inc., a post-hospital center for brain and spinal cord injury rehabilitation in Omaha. “I was definitely not ready to go home after the hospital,” he says. “We were looking for the next step in my recovery and were fortunate to find QLI, where I spent six months.” It took 40 minutes to put on a pair of shoes at the beginning when Schuetz could barely push himself a few feet in his wheelchair, so the initial focus of rehabilitation was to regain his independence. With intensive physical and occupational therapy, Schuetz was able to master everyday tasks. “It was at QLI where I gained the strength to realize I could be successful in life after a traumatic accident,” Schuetz says. // 60 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

Over time, he set bigger and broader goals. The former athlete became an athlete once again; besides scuba diving, he has participated in several half-marathons via wheelchair, has kayaked using an accessible dock at Lake Cunningham, and plays in a wheelchair rugby league. “For me, it was important to be competitive again, to feel like an athlete. For 30 years of my life I was a competitive athlete and just being part of that camaraderie of a team again, that’s huge,” he says. Being physically active can assist circulation, muscle tone, bone density, and even digestion for a person in a wheelchair, says Ed Armstrong, an adaptive sports and recreation specialist for QLI. Plus, returning to the meaningful activities that enrich one’s life is an important part of long-term recovery. “It’s about living and not just surviving,” Armstrong says. “We’re all trying to have a fulfilling life.” During Schuetz’s hospitalization, his life took another unexpected turn when he met a woman (Erin Olson) through friends who stopped by for a visit. “We had a very genuine conversation and discovered that we had a lot in common. Erin was so spiritual, kind, and compassionate. Even in my condition she did not see me as a person with limitations. Erin would come back to visit me a number of times…As we got to know each other, Erin became my dearest friend,” he says. “This new relationship was the positive influence I needed to push me toward my recovery goals.” Some adaptations were made to Erin’s house; Schuetz moved in after his discharge from QLI and they began working with a contractor to build an accessible home. A proposal soon followed.

Then came the news that a baby was on the way. “I had the type of injury where we didn’t know if having kids would even be an option. When we found out about the first one we were ecstatic,” Schuetz says. “And then we ended up having three more.” The Schuetzes’ four boys are now between the ages of 2 and 9. “Life got busy in a hurry,” Schuetz says. “They’re into everything, just like I was growing up—all the sports and 4-H activities, Boy Scout meetings, practices and games, doctor and dentist appointments…My wife and children are a reminder each day of how blessed


The former athlete became an athlete once again; besides scuba diving, he has participated in several half-marathons via wheelchair, has kayaked using an accessible dock at Lake Cunningham, and plays in a wheelchair rugby league. I am. I was given a second chance, to never take anything for granted, or let a moment slip through my fingers.” In 2010, Schuetz became certified (through the Christopher Reeve Foundation) as a peer mentor and returned to QLI—this time as a staff member—to help launch a new mentoring program. His wife is a teacher, so the couple has chosen to remain in the Sioux City area as Schuetz commutes to Omaha two days a week. “It’s 90 miles one way for me, but if I’m helping somebody out and they don’t have to learn something the hard way, that makes the drive nothing,” he says.

Armstrong says one of QLI’s goals is “to get people who’ve had a life-changing traumatic event back to the things they love.” For Schuetz, who helped craft the adaptive sports program, it was competitive sports, but for others it’s been a spectrum of activities including fishing, adaptive biking, archery, yoga, golf, go-cart racing, and rock climbing. “We found that adding those activities to daily therapies for people, they’re more upbeat, they work harder, and they were setting more quantifiable goals for themselves,” Schuetz says. “I always tell people it’s a ‘technical problem.’ You have the vision of what you want to do, and we figure out the how.”

“Jon inspires all of us with his spirit and his wisdom and his patience. He takes the time to listen, and people share with Jon,” Armstrong says. “He can offer advice, support, and guidance for this rehab journey, which is uncharted territory for everybody; no one expects this to happen to them.” “I enjoy mentoring,” Schuetz says. “If I can be helpful to someone who’s rebuilding their life, just share my experiences and any resources I have that might make an impact on their journey toward their own independence, I’m definitely happy.”   Visit qliomaha.com for more information.

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 61 //


// FASHION //

NICK MOORE HAS a specific and well-developed personal style—obvious when he wears a kilt on golf and hunting trips.

The 31-year-old clothing af icionado and professional clothier for Tom James Co. began cultivating what he calls his “British Town and Country” style aesthetic in high school. “I think in another life I was part of the English landed gentry; I would have loved to have lived in Downton Abbey, post-W WI in the English countryside,” he says. Along with his appreciation for kilts, Moore admits to having a love affair with tweed jackets. For boots, he prefers Australian R.M. Williams. Belts are another obsession (his favorite is an alligator-leather Martin Dingman belt with a personalized brass monogram buckle).

“He [Ralph Lauren] is able to create his own narrative through clothing. He was a very active guy, being outdoors and doing fun sports,” Moore says. “He picked that medium and he sort of created a movable feast of self-expression. And I love guys—speaking of movable feast—like Hemingway; I loved the way guys could look good and be active.”

D

Reaching back to his Scottish heritage on his father’s side, Moore decided to take his hunting attire to the next level. He surprised his companions one year after asking his grandmother to sew him a kilt for the hunt.

But the Nebraska-born st yle consultant says he is just as comfortable in torn jeans and muddy boots as he is in black tie. You’d be hard-pressed to find Moore in old, tattered denim, though. His elevated sense of style even translates to his active pursuits, including hunting, fishing, and golf.

Since then, the sometimes tartan-clad hunter has expanded his wardrobe to three kilts (including a formal one for black-tie occasions). “It’s an impractical thing to wear hunting, but it makes people happy,” he says. “It gives a little levity to something that a lot of people, I think, take too seriously.”

He says he abhors much of the newer tech and sporting gear, so he wears clothing he would normally wear every day for his outdoor activities. And yes, that includes tweed jackets. “It’s not like I have a completely separate wardrobe like most people do,” Moore says. “I don’t have one stitch of camouf lage. I’d rather wear a tweed jacket than an Under Armour microfiber camo-techie sort of thing.”

For special occasions in the field— such as the opening weekend for pheasant hunting in South Dakota—Moore breaks out a kilt. It started with Moore wearing a tie adorned with pheasants on one trip a few years ago. From that fashion statement, a competition of stylewits emerged between Moore and his hunting buddies.

STORY BY JARED SPENCE PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

His day-to-day and activewear wardrobe consists of an abundance of tweed and natural wool in the fall and winter, and cotton and linen pieces in the spring and summer. The “master of it all,” Ralph Lauren, Moore says is a key inspiration for his style and was even the focus of his capstone during his MBA studies at the University of Nebraska-Omaha.

Moore says he enjoys having the right gear for the right moment. He appreciates the details of a custom f ly rod, the grain of wood on a shotgun, or the hand-stitching in a garment.

“I just love the details. And I think that’s probably where I get most of my excitement in clothing,” he says. “In all elements of style and design, in life, are the details—the little things that maybe no one else will notice. But I will.”   Individuals wishing to contact Moore for style consultations can reach him by email at n.moore@ tomjames.com. Visit tomjames.com for more information.

NICK MOORE’S STYLISH ACTIVE WEAR // 62 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


Nick Moore eschews camo.

“IT’S AN IMPRACTICAL THING TO WEAR HUNT­ ING, BUT IT MAKES PEOPLE HAPPY, IT GIVES A LITTLE LEVITY TO SOMETHING THAT A LOT OF PEOPLE, I THINK, TAKE TOO SERIOUSLY.”

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 63 //


ANIMAL LOVER // STORY BY RYAN BORCHERS // PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

AS THE DEDICATED diamond buyer for

Borsheims, it’s not surprising that Heather Ingraham travels all over the world. She even went to the Falkland Islands recently—but not to inspect precious gems—to look at penguins.

Volunteers like Ingraham keep the bats at home in small containers, feeding them so they gain sufficient weight to hibernate. When the weather warms in spring, they release 200-400 bats at a public event held outside Joslyn Art Museum.

Ingraham, 38, credits her job for inspiring her dedication to animal conservation. It all started with a Zoofari fundraiser for the Henry Doorly Zoo at her work in 2011.

On top of that, she is a Nebraska Humane Society foster parent. Her colleagues call her the “critter foster parent” for taking in all the animals that are not dogs and cats—i.e, rats, gerbils, etc.

Zoo ambassadors were walking around Borsheim’s luxury salon with animals (penguins, snakes, and bullfrogs). “I was having an amazing time speaking with the keepers, learning about the animals, and one of the keepers at one point told me that I could be doing this, too,” she says. Since that encounter, Ingra ham began volunteering at the zoo almost every Saturday. She gives presentations to the public, assists keepers, and feeds birds, snakes, and rodents. Her devotion to animal welfare doesn’t stop there. Ingraham also volunteers with Nebraska Wildlife Rehab, an organization that receives injured and abandoned wildlife from the public. She even keeps some of those animals in her home, including bats.  “I’m really involved with the bats in the winter,” says Ingraham, who kept 40 bats over the past winter. “They’re supposed to be hibernating. There’re not enough bugs out for them to eat, so we can’t release them.” If a bat gets in your home during any time of the year, she urges you not to harm it. Call the Nebraska Humane Society instead for a free removal. She says the nocturnal creatures are highly effective pollinators that keep the mosquito population in check to prevent the spread of West Nile virus.

Penguins, however, are Ingraham’s obsession. “I love all birds. I’ve seen close to 600 species of birds,” she says. “It’s just that…penguins hold a special place in my heart. They’re just so comical. They are very devoted parents, and they’re just so different from each other.” Ingraham has seen penguins in South Africa, Chile, and the Galápagos Islands. Her goal is to see every species of penguin in the wild. She’s currently seen seven. (The nonprofit organization BirdLife International says there are 18 penguin species.) The Falkland Islands are a popular summer nesting ground for penguins, so Ingraham traveled there in February to take a landbased trip, which allows visitors to see the birds up close. That’s about all the trip entailed. Just watching penguins. No guided tours or other activities.

Some of the diamond buyer’s philanthropic work has also benefited her employer. In fact, as a result of her participating in a baby rhino rescue in South Africa in 2016, Ingraham helped design Borsheims’ Kalahari Dream Diamond Rhino Pendant (an 18-carat gold necklace with a rough diamond selling for $550) with a portion of proceeds going to help Care for Wild Rhino Sanctuary in South Africa where she had volunteered. Ingraham has many other plans for the future. She’ll be working with bats in Malawi this summer, and besides seeing the rest of the penguin species, she hopes to hug a whale in Mexico, go on a mountain gorilla trek in Rwanda, and work with wallabies in Australia. “With my involvement at the zoo and volunteering, sometimes it can be a little overwhelming,” she says. But I want to do everything I possibly can. I want to live a life of education, adventure, and generosity.”   Visit nebraskawildliferehab.org, nehumanesociety.org, and omahazoo.com for more information about the local organizations where Ingraham volunteers.

It was a dream come true for Ingraham. “I saw thousands and thousands of penguins,” she says. “I was surprised at how close I was able to get up to them.” Lest you think it sounds like a cold trip, the Falklands get very little snow. “They’re actually just kind of in grassy areas,” she says of the flightless birds. “You would see a penguin next to a sheep.” Sheep farming is a popular industry on the British territory in the south Atlantic Ocean.

Heather Ingraham's Heart of Gold Shines on Snakes, Bats, and Rhinos. MAY/JUNE 2018

// 65 //


FEATURE // STORY BY DOREEN PFOST PHOTOGRAPHY BY NEBRASKA GAME AND PARKS // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

// 66 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


MAY/JUNE 2018

// 67 //


// FEATURE //

T

HE BALD EAGLE IS UNUSUALLY LOUD.

From the riverbank, just beyond the trees, comes a descending whinny, then a high-pitched kree, kree, kree. That’s not what I came to the river to find, but sometimes you get what you’re not looking for. It’s a sunny afternoon in late February, unseasonably warm, and I am looking for sandhill cranes. I’ve heard reports that a few are about, and this is the sort of day that should make a crane spread its wings and coast on wind currents near the river. At least that’s what I would do, if I were a crane. Descending the soft, sandy slope to the river, I’m startled to see right before me a huge dark mass in an old tree whose branches stretch over the water: the eagle. No, wait. A pair of eagles, sharing a branch. Eagle chicks may soon be on the way. The eagles fly off one at a time, with powerful, stiff wingbeats, and I am alone on a river bank with neither eagles nor cranes. I gaze at empty blue sky and at the sandy north bank and the sandbar where cranes often congregate—when they are here. I know that 600 miles away, someone like me is standing near the Platte River where hundreds or even thousands of cranes are feeding in cornfields and rattling the air with their calls. But I am at the Wisconsin River, not the Platte, and to see sandhill cranes here, I will have to wait. The dry switchgrass stirs in the breeze. A chickadee sings his descending three-note courtship song: DEE dee-dee. I turn away from the river and walk back up the small slope. There, nestled between a stand of pines and a patch of restored prairie, is a tiny brown building with a white door and shutters. If not for the brick chimney and the lean-to wing on the south side, it would look like a chicken coop, and in fact, that’s what it once was. But not just any chicken coop. This one is a National Historic Landmark. An old pump stands out front; its water once nourished the nearby pine that, even in this robust stand of trees, is especially large. And just outside the door is a lilac bush, covered with tiny yellow-green buds that await the spring. Whenever I find old lilacs like this near unoccupied buildings or empty foundations, I think, “Somebody once loved this place.” // 68 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

And indeed, the shack is a place that many still treasure. This was the weekend retreat of conservationist Aldo Leopold and his family, and it’s the setting for the 12 consecutive months’ worth of essays that begin his beloved book, A Sand County Almanac and Sketches Here and There.

From what I have seen, the cranes’ behavior on arrival at their various destinations seems to mirror our own response upon reaching a familiar or beloved place: their jubilant trumpeting sounds like joy. Leopold purchased the 80-acre “worn out farm” in 1935, and the following year he and his family began the long, slow process of restoring the land’s health. Depleted by drought and over-farming in the 1930s, the land was so stripped of plant life that it seemed the Leopolds could see for miles in every direction. They planted pine trees over much of the ground to stave off erosion. They started a vegetable garden. And on the field in front of the shack they set to work “creating” a small prairie, learning as they went. Leopold, one of the first practitioners of ecological restoration, used the farm as a sort of laboratory. But apart from the sometimes backbreaking work, this was a place for the family to fish, hunt, and enjoy reprieves from city life in Madison. The Leopolds formed a deep connection to the place—a connection built on their shared effort and also on the joy they shared here. Leopold, who had been a prolific writer throughout his life, was also a prolific note taker. In the Sand County Almanac’s July essay, “Great Possessions,” he describes rising before dawn, sitting on a bench before the shack with coffee pot and notebook to record the chorus of birds as they chimed in one by one: the field sparrow,

the robin, the oriole, and indigo bunting. Year-round notes from the shack became essays that made up the “almanac” part of his book. Then he added sketches from other places he had known. The book concludes with Leopold’s “Upshot,” an essay about a concept he called “the land ethic.” He wrote, “That land is a community is the basic concept of ecology, but that land is to be loved and respected is an extension of ethics.” Since its publication in 1949, A Sand County Almanac has sold over 2 million copies, and many conservationists, outdoor enthusiasts, natural resource professionals, and scholars regard it as a touchstone. Many Sand County Almanac readers, upon learning that the shack is a place that actually exists, want to visit, as a sort of pilgrimage. They’re able to do so because the Aldo Leopold Foundation, whose mission is to advance Leopold’s land ethic and conservation legacy, now owns the Leopold property and welcomes visitors. Some people want to see the scenes of their favorite essays: the place where the Great Oak was felled, or the hillside from which the family observed the Wisconsin River’s spring floods. My own favorite essay is “Marshland Elegy,” in which Leopold lyrically describes the interconnection between sandhill cranes and central Wisconsin’s ecology. First published in 1937, when the eastern population of sandhill cranes was near its nadir, the essay raises the possibility—which was then quite real—that cranes might vanish altogether from Wisconsin’s wetlands. I picture Leopold sitting on his bench before the shack, scanning the sky and listening for that distant, far-reaching bugle. Happily, his prophecy did not come to pass, and sandhill cranes in this region have instead gradually recovered. Birds now regularly nest within earshot of the shack. And in the late fall, southbound cranes migrating from their northern breeding grounds gather here in such numbers that the Aldo Leopold Foundation hosts “Crane Congregation” evenings, allowing visitors to enjoy a spectacle that would surely have gladdened Leopold’s heart. Before leaving,


I scan the sky one last time, not with regret, but with the knowledge that cranes will be here in Wisconsin soon, because they are now a part of this place.

like Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and northern Mexico. They are just stopping in Nebraska on the way to nesting territories in Canada, Alaska, and Siberia.

I’m walking down the old Levee Road toward my car when a sport utility vehicle comes bumping along behind me and stops. An older man wearing work clothes and a big smile calls out, “When’re you heading south?” As I raise my sunglasses and start to respond that I’ll soon head not south but west, he realizes that he has mistaken me for a Wisconsin River neighbor and apologizes. On hearing that I have been looking for sandhill cranes, he exclaims, “They’re here!” and beckons me over to stand in the middle of the road while he scrolls through photos on his phone, looking for the one he simply must show me. As he searches I watch for oncoming cars and ask myself, “What is it about cranes?” They are like a universal language, connecting humans who might otherwise think they have nothing in common. They are like something primal, like the headwaters of a river that we have almost, but not quite, forgotten.

From what I have seen, the cranes’ behavior on arrival at their various destinations seems to mirror our own response upon reaching a familiar or beloved place: their jubilant trumpeting sounds like joy.

Before dawn on March 1, I am in my car, driving toward the full moon—toward Nebraska. It is a trip I have made every spring since moving from Nebraska to Wisconsin eight years ago. As I drive, I picture sandhill cranes on the move, on routes perpendicular to my own.

In Nebraska, Interstate 80 enters the Platte River valley, and I start watching for birds. The migration is only beginning, but small flocks in flight lace the sky and most brown corn-stubble fields hold a few gray birds.

In my rearview mirror is part of the breeding range of the sandhill crane’s eastern population. These birds, now numbering perhaps 100,000, spend winters in the southeastern U.S. and are now en route to breeding grounds in Michigan, Wisconsin, eastern Minnesota, and points north and east. By the time I return home to Wisconsin, they’ll be staking out their respective nest territories. Far ahead of me, streaming toward the Platte River, are some 600,000 sandhill cranes, mostly of the lesser subspecies, which is about three-fourths the size of the greater sandhill cranes that make up the eastern population. These birds of the mid-continent population winter in places

My route crosses rivers large and small, and I mentally check them off, like a roll call or a countdown: the Pine River, which feeds the Wisconsin; the lower Wisconsin River on its way to the Mississippi; then the Mississippi River itself at Dubuque, where the water looks endless. Next come rivers that feed the Mississippi from the west: the forks of the Maquoketa, the Wapsipinicon, Cedar, and Iowa Rivers. At each crossing, I peer over and around bridge railings for glimpses of rivers I’ve seen countless times, checking the banks, trees, and water levels. In western Iowa, the countdown continues with rivers that, like the Platte, flow to the Missouri and thus also join the Mississippi.

Though their winter and breeding ranges cover vast regions, at this point in their migration route, sandhill cranes are pouring into an area that is barely 100 miles wide, and their numbers will soon swell until it seems birds are everywhere. This is the place of convergence, because here they find suitable habitat: broad, shallow channels where they can roost safely at night, fields of waste corn in which to feed, and wet meadows along the river where they can gather at dusk to dance and to round out their diet with invertebrates, grubs, roots, and other wetland delights. Snow geese are here, too, in hundreds of thousands. Their spring stopovers vary from year to year, but this year they’ve chosen the Platte, and I’ll get an even bigger spectacle than I was looking for.

After pitching my tent at the Fort Kearny State Recreation Area, I amble over to the walking path with its trestle bridge across the Platte. Countless geese overhead serenade me. Honks, squeaks, and yelps mingle with bugles of cranes, which fly over in flocks of 10 and 20. At the bridge I gaze east across rushing water with its sandbars and sandy banks. The Platte’s channels intertwine, separating and merging, carving new pathways and building new sandbars. I sometimes think of this spot when looking at the Wisconsin River. As the sun sets, hundreds of geese and cranes in mixed flocks fly overhead and swirl in the orange-tinted western sky before settling on the water. About 300 cranes circle briefly and then fly off to the west. Downstream, a flurry of white geese buffets the sky. Like kerchiefs fluttering on the breeze they drift down, down onto the water. A glowing orange mound swells on the eastern horizon and soon the full moon rises, fiery orange, crisscrossed by the black silhouettes of flying cranes. I watch streams of birds interweaving and merging above me until it is time for sleep. Days later I am in an observation blind with a dozen other people at Audubon’s Rowe Sanctuary, just downstream from Fort Kearny. Situated on the water’s edge, the low wooden structure with large windows offers a wide view from west horizon to east. Several species of ducks—northern pintails, mallards, green-winged teals—paddle about and occasionally take flight when spooked by one of the half-dozen bald eagles on patrol. The sinking sun paints the clouds’ undersides lavender and magenta, and cranes land by the hundreds on the north-bank meadows. We speculate about whether they’ll be spooked by the eagles as well. This is how my connection with the Platte River began. As a volunteer tour guide at the sanctuary, I soon realized many visitors were making a long-planned pilgrimage to the Platte. It’s a strange responsibility to play host to another person’s pilgrimage. My first responsibility was simply to be hospitable and, to some degree, stay out of the way. But I also wanted to be knowledgeable, hoping to add meaning to their visit. Thus I began a systematic study of the river that continued for the six years I lived in Nebraska. I took hundreds of riverside walks, read books, and interviewed people. In time, I thought less about what I could share with others, and more about what I needed to know and understand about the Platte.

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 69 //


// FEATURE //

And I promised myself that if I ever returned to Wisconsin, the state where I had lived most of my life, I would make a similar study of all the places I should have learned about—and learned to love—before moving away. Outside the blind, in gathering darkness, cranes rise from the north bank, swirling and gradually settling in the river upstream. Some fly low over the blind and we can hear the whoosh, whoosh of their wing feathers. Their calls, more vigorous now as they make for the river, seem to vibrate through everything and shake the air. This, perhaps, is the sound that led Leopold to describe sandhill cranes as “wildness incarnate” and to write, “When we hear his call we hear no mere bird.” To me at least, the call is a visceral reminder of our connection to everything else on earth. On the Platte we witness a staggering number of creatures as they cross our continent. On the Wisconsin River there’s the satisfaction of seeing thousands of birds in a place where Aldo Leopold and others once feared they might cease to exist. In both places, the birds are emblematic of a precarious balance in which some wild species are able to coexist (and even thrive) with humans. But the delicacy of that balance tells us that we should take nothing for granted. A great roar draws our eyes west toward Fort Kearny, where the pink horizon is suddenly clotted with swirling black flocks of geese. Meanwhile, more cranes thunder toward us from the east. The sky is dark with birds and we know why we came here. Later, walking slowly in the dark on the way back from the blind, we whisper about all that we have seen. I answer a visitor’s question about where I am from. In Wisconsin, I tell him, I lead tours at Aldo Leopold’s shack, inspired in part by my time on the Platte. And previously, Leopold’s writing inspired my study of the Platte. Sometimes, we agree, life can be like that: like a river where various streams merge in gathering waters. Inside the visitor center, we all bid each other good night. On my way out the door, I glance at the bookrack in the gift shop and among the books about cranes I spy a small white volume: A Sand County Almanac. I would not have thought to look for it here. Perhaps a visitor to the Platte will read it and, feeling the tug of distant water, will someday make a pilgrimage and stand with me on the bank of the Wisconsin River.

Places Where Doreen Pfost Has Volunteered to Guide Crane-Watching Tours Iain Nicolson Audubon Center at Rowe Sanctuary Phone: 308.468.5282 Address: 44450 Elm Island Road, Gibbon, Nebraska Proximity to nearby cities: 40-45 minutes westbound from Grand Island; 20-25 minutes eastbound from Kearney

Aldo Leopold Legacy Center Phone: 608.355.0279 Address: E13701 Levee Road (Rustic Road No. 49), Baraboo, Wisconsin Proximity to nearby cities: 15 minutes northeast of Baraboo; 15 minutes southeast of Wisconsin Dells.

Crane-Watching Sites within the Nebraska State Parks System Note: Fort Kearny is the primary viewing site of Nebraska State Parks.

Fort Kearny State Historical Park and State Recreation Area Phone: 308.865.5305 Address: 1020 V Road, Kearney

// 70 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


Buffalo Bill Ranch State Recreation Area Phone: 308.535.8035 Address: 2921 Scouts Rest Ranch Road, North Platte

North River Wildlife Management Area Phone: 308.535.8025 Location: From Hershey, drive three miles on North Hershey Road, turn right, and go almost two miles east on gravel to find the blind.

Additional Nebraska Crane-Watching Sites Crane Trust Nature & Visitor Center Phone: 308.382.1820 Address: 9325 S. Alda Road, Wood River

The Central Platte NRD maintains two crane viewing sites, both of which are free: 1. The Richard Plautz Crane Viewing Site, 1.5 miles south of I-80 at the Gibbon exit (No. 285) 2.The Alda Crane Viewing Site, two miles south of I-80, off the Alda exit (No. 305)

The following Nebraska Parks sites are on the periphery of sandhill cranes’ primary roosting areas in mid-February through mid-March; each offers convenient camping and easy access to Fort Kearny (the Nebraska State Parks’ primary crane-viewing destination). Mormon Island State Recreation Area Phone: 308.385.6211 Address: 7425 South US-281, Doniphan

Windmill State Recreation Area Phone: 308.468.5700 Address: 2625 Lowell Road, Gibbon


LITERATURE // REVIEW BY DOUG MEIGS // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

This River Beneath the Sky:

A Year on the Platte

This River Beneath the Sky reads like an ode to sandhill cranes in the style of Aldo Leopold’s Sand County Almanac. How fitting. Leopold was born in Iowa but produced his seminal work of ecological prose in Wisconsin. Doreen Pfost was likewise a transplant on the sandy banks of Nebraska’s Platte River.

She vividly captures the cranes’ sunrise wakeup call at the peak of their layover, a raucous tumult that echoes across the horizon as tens of thousands of large birds simultaneously burst from sandbar roosts midstream and blacken the sky before landing in nearby cornfields to refuel on grubs and grains.

Pfost moved to south-central Nebraska with her husband’s career. She admits an initial lack of appreciation for her new home. To escape a depressive funk, she began volunteering at the Iain Nicolson Audubon Center at Rowe Sanctuary between Grand Island and Kearney—a place of crucial importance to sandhill crane conser vation and tourism— situated along the Platte River, a “dreary, inconstant river that as if through lack of initiative, followed the route of the interstate system.”

Pfost’s book is organized into 12 chapters corresponding roughly to the calendar. Her f irst chapter concludes with an afternoon departure of cranes for Arctic summering grounds and a call for environmental stewardship: “The cranes will go north—for now—and those of us who stay behind will keep an eye on the river.”

Her initial attitude soon changes. Pfost embraces f ly-over country and comes to perceive the central Platte as a sort of essential “airport” hub on the bustling Central Fly way Migration Corridor. Her ensuing book is a beautiful work of woven memoir, ecology, journalism, history, and literature braided together much like the braided stream of the Platte where Willa Cather’s Lucy Gayheart met her demise. Pfost even refers to Leopold and Cather alike. The bugling hubbub of sandhill cranes ignites Pfost’s passion for the onceseemingly dreary landscape: “This is how spring arrives at the Platte—not with the f lip of a calendar page, but from the little clouds blown in on a southerly wind,” she writes of the cranes’ springtime arrival, which quickly amplifies from a “sprinkle” to a torrential “shower.”

Throughout most of her book, sandhill cranes are absent in seasonal migrations to the north or south. Yet their presence always seems near, even when Pfost is writing about bison, whooping cranes, bobolinks, or annelids. After the cranes’ departure from the Platte, Pfost mulls over the history of pioneer trails, human settlement along the river, and the taming of the once-unpredictable river to meet incessant water demands from hydroelectric power, reservoirs, and agriculture. Pfost’s earnest dedication to botanical and zoological minutiae emerges in rich descriptions of the environment while she hikes and jogs along the river. Also fascinating are anecdotes of peoplewatching at the Rowe Sanctuary, where “gossamer threads” bind birdwatchers and cranes along the “wild, dancing stream that used to be.” River Beneath the Sky follows a journalistic path providing the backstory of sandhill crane conservation in Nebraska, its necessary infrastructure projects, local grassroots opposition, and the families of homesteaders, concluding, appropriately,

with the close of another migratory passing of sandhill cranes through the Rowe Sanctuary. The Aldo Leopold Foundation’s website reveals that Pfost has migrated onward, now living in Wisconsin and giving tours at the Aldo Leopold Shack and Farm—a site of resurgent sandhill crane populations some 80 years after Leopold mused about the birds’ potential extinction. Although a migrant in Nebraska, much of Pfost’s writing resonates with my sense of personal connection to ancestors who homesteaded along the Platte and the sandhill cranes’ primordial staging grounds. When I first read her book in the spring, sandhill cranes were passing through Nebraska in record number. Yet I was stuck in Omaha, the place of my birth, with the cranes’ cacophonous chorus echoing in my memory from past trips to the river. The Platte may not be visible from my home in urban Omaha, as the river curves south and around the city to meet the Missouri, yet I am always drawn to its presence. It nurtured my maternal ancestors, immigrants from Germany, and it nurtured me on childhood visits to the family farm. In 2014, I had proposed to my wife after a trip to view the sandhill cranes at the Rowe Sanctuary. Like Pfost, my wife is a newcomer to Nebraska. Sometimes Nebraska can be difficult to appreciate through all four seasons. With the gift of this book, I hope the author’s enthusiasm may be contagious. A version of this review was originally published in the summer 2017 edition of Western American Literature (Vol. 52, No. 2), the journal of the Western Literature Association published by University of Nebraska Press.

Book author: Doreen Pfost Published by: University of Nebraska Press, 2016 Length: 180 pages, paperback

MAY/JUNE

// 72 //

2018


Throughout most of her book, sandhill cranes are absent in seasonal migrations to the north or south. Yet their presence always seems near.


HISTORY // STORY BY LEO ADAM BIGA AND DAISY HUTZELL-RODMAN // PHOTOGRAPHY PROVIDED BY THE OKOBOJI MARITIME MUSEUM // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

// 74 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


There’s a real charm to it. You drive past cornfields and all of a sudden you get up to Okojobi and you’re struck by the beauty of it—the lake coves, the oak trees lining the shores, the clearness of the water, the clean beaches. -Denny Walker, Omaha

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 75 //


// HISTORY //

Patterson Cottage. Built late 1800s. Became known as the haunted house. No longer standing.

SOME MIGRATORY OMAHANS make a

tradition of flocking north to the freshwater oasis called Okoboji. This historic, former Native American encampment and hunting ground turned settler outpost and sportcommercial fishing haven in northwest Iowa features natural, glacier-carved lakes and plentiful beaches. Okoboji, a 200-mile meander from the metro, has been an Iowa Great Lakes resort area for more than a century. Arrival of railroads in the early 1880s connected Dickinson County’s lakes region to the outside world as never before. Hotels stores, boatyards, and other attractions sprang up, catering to train and steamboat travelers. The Okoboji Store dates back to 1884 and Mau Marine, which used to be called Wilson Boat Works, has operated since 1884. The lure (then and now): pristine waters, plentiful fishing, and getting away from it all with friends and family. Okoboji has survived high and low water levels, floods (including the Great Flood of 1993), droughts, the Great Depression, world wars, and cultural shifts. Parasols and two-piece swimsuits gave way to Raybans, bikinis, and shorts. Big band swing bowed to rock ’n’ roll. Instead of transistor radios and hard-bound books, sunbathers now sport smartphones and Kindles. As the area gained popularity, homes sprouted and amenities grew in this Great Plains getaway. A steady stream of cars follows I-29 or Highway 71 toward tranquility on any weekend during the summer.

// 76 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

Floete Mansion became the Okoboji Club. Built in 1917, destroyed by fire 1951.

The area includes a chain of six lakes and 70 miles of shoreline that welcome about 1 million visitors annually. Water sports abound. Beaches and docks attract sunbathers. Picnics, backyard barbecues, and house concerts lazily unwind. Campsites and nature trails offer roughing-it adventures. Local locales offer amusement, from roller coasters to theatricals. Plentiful dining spots and bars complete the scene. Many making the pilgrimage own lake houses there, thus making them part-time Okobojians. In the post-war era, parents of the baby-boom generation built small cabins. As those baby boomers came of age and made money themselves, they bought the smaller homes and remodeled them or tore them down for new homes. The part-timers mix easily with “originals” and “old-timers.” Denny Walker of Omaha long ago fell under Okoboji’s spell. “There’s a real charm to it. You drive past cornfields and all of a sudden you get up to Okojobi and you’re struck by the beauty of it—the lake coves, the oak trees lining the shores, the clearness of the water, the clean beaches.” Walker’s enchantment goes back to family vacations as a kid. He now shows his children the magic. “My dream was to have a home in Okoboji, and now I’m living my dream,” says Walker, who built a cottage-style lake house with a big screened-in porch a decade ago.

His ’Boji fever sometimes starts before the season. Walker has hosted a “launch party” in Omaha at the hangar for his business, JetLinx, with Okoboji vendors and wares, as a season warmup. He’s also among pilgrims with deep stakes who give back by serving on local boards. “I’m really involved in the community up there,” Walker says. “It isn’t a job for me, it’s a passion, it’s a love for Okoboji.” He is involved with beautifying the area and growing the art center’s endowment. He also leads the fundraising campaign for the three-phase, $12 million restoration of the Arnolds Park Amusement Park. The first phase was completed last year, with more parking and upgraded bathrooms. The Maritime Museum expansion is nearly complete. The Iowa Rock ’n’ Roll Hall of Fame will be upgraded. And the historic Roof Gardens is slated to be restored next. The vintage Arnolds Park Amusement Park celebrated its 125th anniversary in 2015, and it continues to serve nostalgic fun with its traditional midway, classic rides, wooden roller coaster (The Legend is one of the world’s oldest wooden roller coasters, built in 1930), and Nutty Bars (the first Nutty Bar stand opened in 1945) much to the delight of all—including Omaha transplant Morris Caudle, who is watching a new generation experience the park with fresh eyes. “My grandchildren, ages 12 and 14, announced to me [on Easter] that they had saved up their money so they can buy


// HISTORY //

Tudor House, Des Moines Beach. Still stands.

a season pass to Arnolds Park,” Caudle says. A 2018 season pass ranges from $90$160. “They were really excited…I was really pleased.” Caudle splits his time between Charleston, South Carolina, and the Okoboji home he built in 2007. Before building a home, he kept a condo at Okoboji. He’s board chair for the art center, which, he says, “is a major part of the community with its robust programming all year long.” Omahan Julie Sudbeck comes from a family with roots going back four generations in the Iowa Great Lakes of Okoboji. Sudbeck grew up around the family business, White Oaks Bait Shop, which her parents bought in 1974. Julie herself worked as waitress at Koffee Kup Kafe at age 14, riding a moped to the job, and the next year as a “gas jockey” when her father was the general manager of Wilson Boat Works. She and her parents moved to Omaha in 1987, but by 1989, they secured a summer place up north. After it flooded in 1993, the family rebuilt. Family members come from near and far to gather, often for long, lazy weekends before heading back to work and activities in Omaha. Julie can even take her great-nephews to the Koffee Kup Kafe for grilled ham and cheese or BLT sandwiches like those she once served to patrons. Summers in Okoboji are a time for them to renew familiar bonds with shared activities. “It’s very rare somebody goes off to do their own thing,” Sudbeck says “It’s more like, ‘What are we all going to do?’ And that’s just it—we make the plans together, and we

want to. That’s what it’s constantly about— the lake and your friends and family. You just can’t replace it.” Speaking of their place on the lake, Sudbeck explains, “Where we live, there’s a whole shoreline of family dwellers. It’s their children and grandchildren. Everybody has a houseful. That is the common denominator—friends and family.”

Whitman Cottage

a good cure for a mild hangover,” he says, adding, “I don’t need my blood pressure medication when I’m at the lake immersed in that tranquility.” That laissez faire attitude transfers to even the most basic of needs. Dinnertime could be anything from a backyard barbecue with the family to a progressive dinner between many lakeshore residents.

Years of escaping to the lakes have fostered strong feelings of attachment to Okoboji. Sudbeck’s kids have never known summers without it.

Like Denny Walker, Caudle says he’s “made it a point to befriend the locals, understand their priorities, particularly the environment.”

“My children would be devastated if we didn’t have the lake house,” she says. “It’s a huge part of their life. I don’t think they’ve missed a Fourth of July in Okoboji.”

Those priorities and those friends are part of how Okoboji keeps its charm. It’s a step back to a simpler time, and, after three decades of engaging in activities and making friends, Caudle says he and his wife “are more than just ‘summer people.’”

Caudle likes the rituals that accompany life there. “Our lake season typically starts with the melting of West Okoboji, usually in midMarch or early April,” Caudle says. “Lake gulls show up for a feeding frenzy, joined later by white pelicans. It is a challenge to time our arrival just before the lake ‘turns over’ to see this spectacle of nature. As the days start getting longer and warmer, the opening process begins. Each family member has duties, and it is a race to see who gets their checklist completed first.” After that, daily rhythms set the schedule. Caudle also appreciates the therapeutic value of the place.

As far as Caudle’s concerned, Okoboji will be in his family for generations to come. “That’s the plan. We would like our grandkids to have their grandkids to enjoy the things we do there.”
Same for Walker, whose kids and grandkids already relate summer and holidays to time in Okoboji. He can’t imagine a better sanctuary: “It’s a trip back in time. It’s a wonderful family place filled with memories.” Visit vacationokoboji.com and arnoldspark. com for more information.

“Old-timers feel there’s a magic to bathing in the lake. I do that from time to time. It’s

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 77 //


BIG CHANGES,

BIG THRILLS, BIGGER MEMORIES. CLOSE YOUR EYES, & YOU’RE THERE. Screaming with delight on the Legend wooden roller coaster. Smiling as you share a special moment aboard the Queen II excursion boat. Laughing hysterically when you get soaked on the Boji Falls log ride. Historic Arnolds Park Amusement Park is all about making memories that you and your family will never forget. The Park is currently going through a multi-million dollar renovation. Improving our current facilities, restoring the historical structures, and developing functional facilities for today’s modern world.

FREE M U S E U M

FREE

FREE

FREE

P A R K I N G

CO N CE RT S

ENT R A NCE*

Queen II, Raceway, Shopping, Beach, Dining And Concessions! *Free to walk around; pay to ride

V I S I T

WELCOME HOME OP

AT

EN

DA

10

ILY

THE FUNHOUSE SLIDE

ARNOLDSPARK.COM

SEASON MEMBERSHIPS | TICKETS | CALENDAR | HOURS

N O N2018 - P R O F I T O R G A N I Z AT I O N // 78 // AMAY/JUNE

S H A R E

Y O U R

M E M O R I E S .


SPONSORED

Action and adventure are a key part of

summer, and there are several areas nearby to offer easy excursions from the metro area. Here are some special advertisers who want you, the reader, to know of their excursion-worthy attractions and services. Adventure can be found as close as Omaha-area lakes, where people can go paddleboarding. Head south about 130 miles and explore St. Joseph, Missouri. Or drive north about 200 miles and take in the old-fashioned fun to be had at Lake Okoboji. And for even more ideas for day trips, turn to the Explore calendar on page 128.

DRIFTWOOD PADDLE ADVENTURES Zorinsky and Standing Bear Lakes 402.850.0538 driftwoodpaddleadventures.com

Driftwood Paddle Adventures introduces individuals, groups, and families to the fitness benefits of paddleboarding and a new appreciation for area rivers and lakes. All equipment is included and an experienced guide provides instruction.

“Paddleboarding offers something for everyone. You can make it an intense workout or a time to relax,” says guide Alexandra Stebbing. “People always leave excited and wanting to do it again.”

CHOOSE YOUR OWN ADVENTURE IN ST. JOSEPH, MO StJoMo.com PLAY! Our unique 26-mile Parkway system is on the National Register of Historic Places and at the northern end of the parkway is the 162-acre Krug Park, complete with a lagoon filled with ducks, geese and fish, waterfalls and fountains, and a play-yard designed to resemble a castle. LEARN! Check out a place recently cited in New York Times as one of the “World’s Weirdest Museums”, the Glore Psychiatric Museum. Formerly “State Lunatic Asylum No. 2,” it contains artifacts and exhibits that depict the history of centuries of mental health treatment. Next see where notorious outlaw Jesse James was shot and killed at the Jesse James Home Museum. HUNT OR FISH! Early explorers were amazed by the bountiful fish and wildlife found near present-day St. Joseph, Missouri, and today fishing and hunting in this area is second to none.

Bridal, Prom, & Clothing Boutique

712.337.3112

PLEASE CALL TO RESERVE YOUR BRIDAL APPOINTMENT. zz MON-THURS 10-6, FRI 10-5, SAT 10-4, SUN 12-4 (SEASONALLY)

Rochester Falls, about 10 miles north of St. Joseph, offers better-than-average channel and flathead catfishing and the many public conservation areas bring in avid hunters from around the world.

zz 1407 Hwy 71 N Okoboji, IA (attached to Arrowwood Resort) elegancebysarah.com MAY/JUNE 2018

// 79 //


Th e go od life awai ts .

CONNECT • PLAY • WORK • HOST • CELEBRATE OAK HILLS COUNTRY CLUB

18-hole golf course | Six-lane pool | Hard-court tennis courts | 28,000-square-foot clubhouse 402-895-3636 | oakhillscountryclub.org

L E G ACY

EYECARE

MEET OUR TEAM

DISCOVER THE POWER OF MOBILE FIRST DESIGN Nearly 60% of searches happen on mobile devices and is expected to grow. Mobile Responsive websites are out and Mobile First website technology is in. The combination of a Mobile First website design with Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) will make your website ready for your customers and the future. • • • • •

Better search ranking scores Faster load times Better layout on mobile Greater lead-conversion rates Improved user-interface experience

Omaha’s Most Trusted Destination

For Your Family’s Sunglasses Dr. Jeff Brewer

Owner & Managing Optometrist

Dr. Jaimie Kruger Clinical Director & Pediatric Specialist

LOOK GREAT - SEE BETTER! 16949 Lakeside Hills Plaza, Suite 101 • Omaha, NE 68130 402.614.3200 • legacyeyecare.com

BEST ADVERTISING AGENCY 5 YEARS IN A ROW FIND OUT HOW MOBILE FIRST IS DIFFERENT AND BETTER THAN MOBILE RESPONSIVE. 402.334.3530 SLEIGHTADVERTISING.COM

// 80 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


SPONSORED

The Harry A. Koch Co.

The Personal Insurance team at The Koch Co. understands the importance of ensuring that all your assets are protected. Our insurance professionals focus on finding the best policy options available for your home, auto, and more.

402.861.7000 | Hakco.com

Mad Hatter Muffler

Delivering award-wining customer service and work for 38 years. A Best of Omaha 2018 winnerâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;servicing daily drivers, hybrid & electric, hot rods, and anything in between. In this highly shoppable section, the City Market, you are guaranteed to discover that one unique service or special gift.

402.330.2286 MadHatterMufflerOmaha.com

The Tea Smith

We invite you to visit our educated staff to learn about our many varieties of fresh loose leaf tea. We offer a wide range of accessories from the perfect kettle or travel press to your new favorite brew-in mug. We provide the perfect gift or treat yourself. Open Monday - Saturday 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. & Sunday 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.

402.393.7070 TheTeaSmith.com


GIVING FEATURE // STORY BY SEAN MCCARTHY // PHOTOGRAPHY PROVIDED BY NEBRASKA NATIONAL GUARD // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

CORNHUSKERS RELIEVE HURRICANE CATASTROPHES Nebraska National Guard in Texas and Puerto Rico LIKE EVERYONE WHO serves in the

National Guard, Master Sgt. Matthew Jordan is accustomed to “the call” in all its variations. It could come in the form of a two-month advanced notice that he’ll be deployed to Afghanistan. Other times, the notice is far shorter. Last August, he was told to report for duty in one hour to respond to Hurricane Harvey. Jordan was closely monitoring news reports as Labor Day was approaching. The hurricane made landfall on the Texas Gulf Coast on August 25. Jordan was keeping in touch with his father, who decided to ride out the storm in his Houston home. His father’s home didn’t suffer much damage, and after a few days of not getting “the call,” Jordan and his wife were beginning to make plans for the long Labor Day weekend. On Thursday before the holiday, he heard his division would not be called up. The next day, while watching SportsCenter, his supervisor called him. “I had to say goodbye to my kids on the phone, kiss my wife, and I was out the door,” Jordan says.

// 82 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

Last fall, the Nebraska National Guard was repeatedly called up to respond to hurricanes Harvey and Maria. Jordan was part of a 44-person medical team that was sent to Texas. The mission lasted about 10 days. For the first few days, Jordan says he braced himself to be called out on a mission that would never materialize.

and coordinating medical supply deliveries. During this time, he was running on about four hours of sleep a night. Finding a place to shower was oftentimes a challenge because many places still didn’t have running water.

“You get adrenaline, and that mission would fall apart,” Jordan says.

During his mission, Jordan was stopped by a man who had just moved to Beaumont from Chicago. The man had moved his wife and two children into a house two weeks before the hurricane hit town. His entire house had flooded, and his family was living out of his car.

Jordan ended up staying in a hotel in Beaumont, Texas. He eventually moved to a church near the city of Vidor, which is located in extreme southeast Texas, close to the Louisiana border. Around the fifth day of his deployment, he finally got his orders: set up two tents and provide medical care to the storm victims. Over two-and-a-half days, Jordan estimated his team treated about 180 patients. The majority of those were treated for pharmacy-related problems. Most of the pharmacies in the area were still shut down, and people were running out of their medications. Jordan was in charge of getting water

“It was so hot and humid. I cannot describe what an armpit that place was,” Jordan says.

“Helping him out meant the most,” Jordan says. “I felt really bad for him, because I have a wife and three kids.” The National Hurricane Center estimates that at least 68 people died in Texas due to Harvey. The conservative death toll for Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico stands at 64, but there are estimates that hundreds of people have lost their lives from that storm’s aftereffects.


B

Oma ha ’s

2B

O

HA ’

S

Cade and Nissen headed to Puerto Rico almost two months after the hurricane made landfall. When he arrived at Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport, Cade noticed most all of the airport’s ceiling tiles were missing from where he could see. He also noticed an exodus of people waiting to leave.

to-Busi essne ss sin MA

ne azi ag

“I literally walked through the door to my house, put my rucksack down on the floor, and the phone rang,” he says.

Bu

M

Capt. Cody Cade was deployed along with Staff Sgt. Koan Nissen to document the National Guard’s response to Maria in Puerto Rico. Like Jordan, Cade was called up quickly. He had just returned from a week of training in Fort Riley, Kansas.

Thanks Omaha for 30 Years! 2016 Winner

A+ Rating 20 Consecutive Years

8 Consecutive Years

402.399.9233 | www.sparklingklean.com

Do You Suffer from Dry Eyes?

“It was just mass chaos,” Cade says. “There were thousands of people waiting to get on a plane.” While thousands were still trying to leave, Cade and Nissen were going inland. In 28 days, the two interviewed 70 people, took about 2,000 photographs, and traveled almost 1,600 miles. While traveling, Cade says the roads were still filled with debris. In one case, his team came across a bridge that had been washed out. No one from the Army Corps of Engineers had yet identified the bridge was gone, Cade says. Cade primarily stuck with interviewing National Guard members—one of whom had lost her niece, born prematurely shortly before Hurricane Maria hit. Then, she lost her grandfather from medical complications because of the storm. Her grandfather was recovering from a heart attack in a hospital. The hospital he was staying at had lost both its main power and backup generators. “She had not taken any time off from the hurricane whatsoever,” Cade says. All of Cade’s interviews are now at the U.S. Army Center of Military History in Washington D.C. They will be transcribed, and later will be made into a book, detailing the relief efforts. After returning to Nebraska, Cade says it felt like he was visiting another country: “It’s a shock to see a portion of the United States could be just devastated in such a manner. Stuff was just wiped off the face of the planet.” He sees it as one big “family” coming together “to help our own.”  

DRY EYE DISEASE AFFECTS

100 MILLION PEOPLE WORLDWIDE. YOU’RE NOT ALONE.

Do you experience any of these Dry Eye Symptoms: Gritty, Burning, Scratchy Irritated Eyes, Light Sensitivity, Redness and Itching, Blurred and Fluctuating Vision, Discomfort with Wind and Air Conditioning, Constant Watering Eyes?

Omaha Primary Eye Care is excited to offer LipiFLow Thermal Pulsation, the most advanced treatment available for the leading cause of Dry Eye. To schedule your Ocular Surface Evaluation and see if LipiFlow will work for you

Call TODAY! 402.330.3000

Visit ne.ng.mil for more information about the Nebraska National Guard.

14607 W. Center Road | OmahaEyeCare.com Dr. Marsha Kubica, Dr. Corey Langford & Dr. Kristen Johnson

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 83 //


GIVING

CALENDAR MAY / J U N E 2 0 1 8

May 1 (5:30-9 p.m.)

May 6 (3-7 p.m.)

Benefiting: Boys Town sports Location: Embassy Suites, La Vista

Benefiting: Patriotic Productions Location: 12345 N. 36th St.

51ST ANNUAL BOYS TOWN BOOSTER BANQUET —boystown.org/boosters

PATRIOTIC PRODUCTIONS FUNDRAISER FOR NEBRASKA FEMALE VETERANS FLIGHT — patrioticproductions.org

May 11 (11:30 a.m.-7 p.m.)

May 19 (9 a.m.)

HIT THE LINKS AND DRIVE AGAINST DISABILITIES GOLF TOURNAMENT

WALK MS

Benefiting: Multiple Sclerosis Foundation Location: Werner Park

Benefiting: United Cerebral Palsy of Nebraska Location: Tiburon Golf Club

—nationalmssociety.org

—ucpnebraska.org

May 12 (all day)

May

STAMP OUT HUNGER MAIL CARRIERS’ FOOD DRIVE

Benefiting: local food banks Location: personal homes (mail carriers will pick up food)

21

—stampouthungerfooddrive.us

May 12 (7 a.m.-2 p.m.)

15TH ANNUAL WEAR YELLOW RIDE, FUN RUN & WALK Benefiting: Wear Yellow Nebraska Location: Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum —supportwyn.org/wyr

May 12 (7:30 a.m.-noon)

May 7 (10 a.m.-7p.m.)

Benefiting: Memories for Kids Location: Champions Run

Benefiting: Youth Emergency Services Location: The Players Club at Deer Creek

—memoriesforkids.org

—yesomaha.org

May 2 (11 a.m.-1 p.m.)

May 8 (11:45 a.m.-1:15 p.m.)

25TH ANNIVERSARY LUNCHEON Benefiting: El Museo Latino Location: El Museo Latino —elmuseolatino.org

YOUTH EMERGENCY SERVICES’ GOLF OUTING

D.J.’S HERO AWARDS LUNCHEON

Benefiting: Salvation Army Location: CenturyLink Center Omaha —salarmyomaha.org

May 3 (5:30 p.m.-8 p.m.)

Benefiting: Partnership for Kids Metro Community College Fort Campus Swanson Building

Benefiting: Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Location: Embassy Suites, La Vista —mwoy.org/ne

May 14 (6:30-9:30 p.m.)

LUNG FORCE BREATHE & BREW

Benefiting: American Lung Association Location: Scriptown Brewing Co. — action.lung.org

May 14 (11 a.m.-6 p.m.)

May 4 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)

GOAL ACHIEVEMENT HONORS CELEBRATION —p4k.org

May 16-19 (times vary)

May 5 (4:30-8:30 p.m.)

CHAMPAGNE AND DIAMONDS DINNER AND AUCTION Benefiting: Micah House Location: Mid America Center — themicahhouse.org

SPECIAL OLYMPICS SUMMER GAMES May 11 (5:30-9 p.m.)

CELEBRATING A DECADE OF THE DERBY

Benefiting: Midlands Humane Society Location: Mid-America Center, Council Bluffs —midlandshumanesociety.org

May 5 (5-9:30 p.m.)

May 11 (6-9:30 p.m.)

Benefiting: Omaha Children’s Museum Location: Omaha Children’s Museum

Benefiting: Brownell Talbot School Location: Brownell Talbot Campus

FOR THE KIDS BENEFIT —ocm.org

// 84 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

PORTRAITS OF EXCELLENCE —brownell.edu/giving/gala

Benefiting: more than 1,000 Omaha nonprofits Location: online —omahagives24.org

May 25 (6-10 p.m.)

40TH ANNIVERSARY SCREENING OF ALIEN WITH GUEST VERONICA CARTWRIGHT

Benefiting: Nebraska Kidney Association Location: Joslyn Art Museum —kidneyne.org

—pinotandpigs.org

Benefiting: Partnership 4 Kids Location: Holland Performing Arts

—gocreighton.com

OMAHA GIVES!

—childrenssquare.org

May 16 (10 a.m.-noon)

Benefiting: Creighton University’s female student-athletes Location: D.J. Sokol Arena

CHILDREN’S CHARITY GOLF CLASSIC

May 30 (6-10 p.m.)

Benefiting: Habitat for Humanity of Omaha Location: Hilton Omaha

13TH ANNUAL LEADERS FOR LIFE LUNCHEON

May 21 (11 a.m.-5 p.m.)

CHIP IN FOR CHILDREN GOLF TOURNAMENT

—saveprogram.org

—habitatomaha.org/womenspowerlunch

—rmhcomaha.org

May 23 (midnight-11:59 p.m.)

Benefiting: SAVE Location: Embassy Suites, La Vista

WOMEN’S POWER LUNCHEON

Benefiting: Ronald McDonald House Charities in Omaha Location: The Players Club at Deer Creek

May 12 (6-8 p.m.)

SAVE PROGRAM GRADUATION DINNER

May 4 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)

May 21 (noon-7 p.m.)

21ST RONALD MCDONALD HOUSE IN OMAHA GOLF TOURNAMENT

—childrensclassic.com

May 15 (5:30-9 p.m.)

—p4k.org

—midlandscommunity.org

—heartwalk.org

Benefiting: Children’s Square USA Location: Council Bluffs Country Club

P4K GRADUATION HONORS BANQUET

Benefiting: Midlands Community Foundation Location: Platteview Golf Club

Benefiting: Children’s Hospital & Medical Center Foundation Location: Champions Run

MAN & WOMAN OF THE YEAR GRAND FINALE GALA MEMORIES FOR KIDS 2018 GUILD LUNCHEON

MCF GOLF TOURNAMENT

Benefiting: American Heart Association Location: Miller’s Landing

2018 OMAHA HEART WALK

May 2 (11 a.m.-1 p.m.)

May 21 (noon)

Benefiting: Special Olympics Location: Varies —sone.org

PINOT, PIGS & POETS

Benefiting: Completely KIDS Location: Happy Hollow Club June 1 (7:30 a.m.-2 p.m.)

FORE THE CURE WOMEN’S GOLF TOURNAMENT

Benefiting: Susan G. Komen Foundation Location: Tiburon Golf Course —golfgenius.com/pages/4021371463805210941

June 1 (5:30 p.m.-midnight)

ON THE ROAD TO PARADISE— HAWAIIAN STYLE

Benefiting: Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands Location: Marriott Downtown at the Capital District —bgcomaha.org/events/ontheroad

June 1 (7-8:30 p.m.)

RUN FOR THE YOUNG

GOLF SCRAMBLE

Benefiting: Children’s Square/Omaha Foster Care Location: Peak Performance

—seniorhealthfoundation.org

June 1-2 (8:30 a.m.-midnight)

May 19 (noon-6 p.m.) Benefiting: Senior Health Foundation Location: Shoreline Golf Course May 19 (9:30 a.m.-noon)

GREAT STRIDES

Benefiting: Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Location: Stinson Park —fightcf.cff.org

—childrenssquare.org

CATTLEMEN’S BALL PRESENTS: WHIP CANCER 2018

Benefiting: Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center Location: Hergott Farm in Hebron, NE —cattlemensball.com


June 2 (6-9:30 p.m.)

CABARET 2018 FEATURING JEFF DYE

Benefiting: The Child Saving Institute Location: Marriott Downtown at the Capital District —childsaving.org/newsevents/cabaret.html

June 2 (6:30-11 p.m.)

JOSLYN ART MUSEUM ASSOCIATION GALA Benefiting: Joslyn Art Museum Association Location: Joslyn Art Museum —joslyn.org

June 2 (6:30-10 p.m.)

OLLIE’S DREAM GALA 2018

Benefiting: Ollie Webb Center Location: Hilton Downtown —olliewebbinc.org

June 3 (7:30-2 p.m.)

STEPPING OUT TO CURE SCLERODERMA 5K WALK/RUN Benefiting: Scleroderma Foundation, Heartland Chapter Location: Chalco Hills Recreational Area —scleroderma.org

June 4 (7:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m.)

CENTRAL HIGH FOUNDATION GOLF OUTING Benefiting: Central High School Foundation Location: Field Club of Omaha —chsfomaha.org

June 5 (11 a.m.-6 p.m.)

PROJECT HARMONY GOLF INVITATIONAL Benefiting: Project Harmony Location: Indian Creek Golf Course —projectharmony.com

June 6 (10:30 a.m.-6 p.m.)

OMAHA HOME FOR BOYS GOLF CLASSIC Benefiting: Omaha Home for Boys Location: Tiburon Golf Club —omahahomeforboys.org

June 8 (5:30-9:30 p.m.)

BASEBALL, BREWS, AND BABIES TOO

Benefiting: OneWorld Community Health Location: The Blatt —oneworldomaha.org

June 9 (10 a.m.-noon)

STRAWBERRY BRUNCH

Benefiting: St. Vincent De Paul Food Pantry Location: St. Wenceslaus Conference

SHOW UP DIG DEEP SHOUT OUT (TO GIVE BIG!)

—svdpomaha.com

June 9 (5:30-9:30 p.m.)

NCHS 125TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION

Benefiting: Nebraska Children’s Home Society Location: Embassy Suites, La Vista —nchs.org

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 85 //


GIVING // NAMES

DYNAMIC, CrOwd-sourced, live, up-to-date EVENTS omahamagazine.com/events

“What Are We doing in Omaha this weekend?” RECLAIM YOUR INDEPENDENCE. RECLAIM YOUR POWER. 402.590.5900 • michael@solaromaha.com • solaromaha.com

Savor the experience Voted Best of Omaha EIGHT Years in a Row 402.558.3202 cateringcreations.com // 86 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


GIVING CALENDAR June 11 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)

CHANCE LUNCHEON FEATURING JOE RICKETTS

June 15 (6-9 p.m.)

June 11 (10:30 a.m.-7 p.m.)

Benefiting: Heartland Family Service Location: Mid-America Center

STRIKE A CHORD 14

—heartlandfamilyservice.org/events

June 16 (5-9 p.m.)

JOSLYN CASTLE UNLOCKED

—hopecenterforkids.org

—unmc.edu/mmi

June 10 (6 p.m.)

FIFTH ANNUAL MISSION POSSIBLE WALK/RUN

Benefiting: Open Door Mission Location: Shadow Lake Towne Center —opendoormission.org

June 11 (10:30 a.m.-4 p.m.)

SWING FOR HEALTH GOLF OUTING

Benefiting: CHI Health Foundation Location: The Players Club at Deer Creek

Benefiting: the Jennie Edmundson Foundation Location: Quaker Steak & Lube, Council Bluffs

—csfomaha.org

Benefiting: the Hope Center for Kids Location: Champions Run Golf Course

Benefiting: Munroe-Meyer Institute Location: Regency to the Medical Center

Benefiting: Project Harmony Location: Werner Park —projectharmony.com

16TH ANNUAL GOLF CLASSIC

50TH ANNUAL MUNROE-MEYER GUILD GARDEN WALK

June 23 (11 a.m.-4 p.m.)

17TH ANNUAL HOPS FOR HARMONY

Benefiting: Children’s Scholarship Fund of Omaha Location: CenturyLink Center

June 10 (9 a.m.-4 p.m.)

June 13 (5:30-8:30 p.m.)

Benefiting: Joslyn Castle Trust Location: Joslyn Castle

June 12 (11 a.m.-6 p.m.)

—joslyncastle.org

THIRD ANNUAL GOLF TOURNAMENT Benefiting: the First Responders Foundation Location: Oak Hills Country Club

firstrespondersomaha.org/golf-tournament

June 13 (11 a.m.-1 p.m.)

SCHOLARSHIP LUNCHEON

June

June 29 (11 a.m.-8 p.m.)

2018 GOLF CLASSIC

Benefiting: ALS in the Heartland Location: Tiburon Golf Club —alsintheheartland.org

Event times and details may change. Check with venue or event organizer to confirm.

17

ROLLIN’ TO COLON

Benefiting: Great Plains Colon Center Task Force Location: Douglas County West High School, Valley, NE

—coloncancertaskforce.org

June 21 (all day)

June 13 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)

Benefiting: Alzheimer’s Association Location: Donor’s choice

WCA TRIBUTE TO WOMEN LUNCHEON

—jehfoundation.org

June 17 (7:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)

Benefiting: Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands Location: Scott Conference Center —bgcomaha.org/luncheon

WHEELS OF COURAGE

THE LONGEST DAY, AN INDIVIDUALIZED FUNDRAISER —alz.org/thelongestday

Benefiting: Women’s Center for Advancement Location: Hilton Omaha —wcaomaha.org

—chihealth.com/foundation

Thanks to Methodist, my family is living healthier. We share a special history with generations of families in this area, helping them through life-changing events and sharing those moments of joy as they overcome challenges and become healthier. And that history lives on with a new generation of patients as we continue to make the future stronger for our community. bestcare.org

©2017 Methodist Health System

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 87 //


VOTED #1

FOR 7 YEARS

PEDI • MANI • SHELLAC • DIPPING POWDER ARTIFICIAL NAILS • WAXING • MICROBLADING • MASSAGE • VERSAPRO SUNLESS TANNING

402.779.8700

3 618 N . 16 5 t h S t . (16 5 & M a p l e) americannailsandspaomaha.com

THANK YOU FOR VOTING US

B E S T FA M I LY D E N T I S T 11 YEARS IN A ROW!

of

HILLSBOROUGH 13808 W. Maple Rd. Omaha, NE 68164 402.445.4647

RALSTON SQUARE 5360 S. 72nd Street Omaha, NE 68127 402.733.4441

SELECTED BY THEIR PEERS AS

VILLAGE POINTE 302 N. 168th Circle Omaha, NE 68118 402.505.7474

DUNDEE 119 N. 51st Street Omaha, NE 68132 402.502.5593

WWW.THEDENTISTSOMAHA.COM

STILL THE BEST 50 YEARS IN SHOW

1120 FORT CROOK ROAD, BELLEVUE, NE 68005 800.756.7344 | 402.292.1455

APACHECAMPER.COM

LOCATIONS ALSO IN LINCOLN & KEARNEY

// 88 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


60PLUS // OPENER

I

N THIS EDITION of 60PLUS in Omaha Magazine,

we continue the issue’s adventure theme.

For those who don’t know, I was married to Mr. Adventure—Raymond Lemke. He sometimes lived on the edge. Or he just flew over it. In fact, he flew a paraplane (which looks sort of like a riding lawnmower with a parachute sail) out of the old South Omaha Airport. Raymond and some friends owned a single-engine airplane. He later built his own airplane, which he started in the finished basement of our home. Before it became too big, he had to move it to the detached two-car garage and eventually the driveway. Once, in the ’70s, the two of us were flying in his single-engine plane to a meeting when we encountered a lightning storm. The bad weather forced our landing in a Kansas cornfield. The farmer told us we could leave the plane there and recommended a boardinghouse in town (there were no hotels). He gave us a ride to town and we spent the night. The next morning, we got a ride to the plane and flew onward. And, of course, there were plenty of road trips. He and his closest male friends would fly their plane or drive on these excursions. All of them were type-A personalities, and I can imagine the butting of heads. I did hear one story of one of the friends driving too slow: Everyone in the car was complaining, so he stopped, got out of the car, and gave the keys to someone else. Every summer, Raymond took our sons on an adventure “guys-only” trip. Their stories are now legendary in the family. He once took the three oldest boys, ranging in age from 10 to 13 years old (our fourth was a toddler), to the Canadian wilderness on a backwoods canoe trip in 1970. In my memory, the boys’ backpacks were bigger than they were. Yet they were portaging their own canoe and camping far from civilization. The youngest of these Lemke explorers was in charge of defending supplies from bears when the others were transporting the canoe—and a bear appeared. Needless to say, being the mother for such a rambunctious bunch was an adventure in itself.

Contributing Editor

MAY/JUNE 2018 • 60PLUS

// 89 //


ACTIVE LIVING // STORY AND PHOTOGRAPHY BY ROD HOWE // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

A Guide to Cycling [and Drinking]

Across Central Nebraska I

T BEGAN AS a simple adventure concocted

by four bicycling buddies to explore local byways on two wheels and sample good beer from the state’s burgeoning craft brewery landscape. Four days later, they dubbed their adventure the First Annual Beermuda Triangle ride. On a Thursday in mid-October, a pickup truck drove the thirsty explorers to their first destination—Bootleg Brewers—on a rambling Sandhills road eight miles northwest of Taylor, Nebraska. Behind the wheel was retired Union Pacific railroad engineer George Evans, 66, hauling retired USDA appraisal specialist Randy Darling, 67 (both of North Platte), Holdrege hairdresser Tim Rehm, 58, Grand Island CPA Mike Swanson, 57, and their four bicycles in the back of the truck. Rest assured, drinking and driving (or riding) was not on the agenda. These veterans of Bike Ride Across Nebraska, The Register’s Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa, and myriad other long-haul trips have more than 20 years of experience responsibly sharing back roads and highway shoulders with automotive traffic. Once the bikes are parked and secured, another story unfolds. Ensuing evenings of mug curling have more than once resulted in a slow start to the morning-after ride. “The idea came from Mike and I, not sure when,” Rehm says. “I guess we had both been to at least Scratchtown [Brewery] and Kinkaider [Brewery] and got to thinking originally about a self-contained trip [where bicyclists do not require a support team and carry their own camping gear, if necessary], but chose to do a credit card tour with lodging each night. At times we talked about including Kearney [Thunderhead Brewery] and Grand Island [Prairie Pride Brewery], but time and calendar constraints eventually determined how many breweries.”

Thus, the first leg of their craft beer tasting began at Bootleg Brewery’s idyllic setting. Imagine a brewery ranch materializing in the middle of the grasslands—a beer oasis. Conveniently, the cyclists reserved one of several cabins situated on the premises to crash.

“I am not sure how many organized tours we have done together, but several BRANs, RAGBRAIs, and Pedaler’s Jamboree in Missouri,” Darling says. “We have also done several self-organized rides, which I actually enjoy more.”

“Bootlegger was good because of the on-site cabins, so over-indulgence was not a problem,” Darling says. “We also enjoyed their patio at the end of the tour.”

On day three, a 49-mile ride against fierce headwinds through roller-coaster hills took them to the Kinkaider Brewery Co. just north of Broken Bow.

Owners Ron and Dodie Worm were very accommodating.

“On the third day we encountered some strong winds between Ord and Broken Bow, which challenged this aging group,” Rehm says.

“Ron was a good guy,” Swanson says. “He allowed me to ride my fat tire bike in the pasture, plus he found my water bottle that bounced off the bike. The quiet in that pasture was amazing.” On day two, a 39-mile ride through the rolling hills took them to Scratchtown Brewery in downtown Ord. The cyclists took time off their saddles to explore the town square on foot. “We had a fun, extended happy hour with some of the locals who invited us to join them in the street-side beer garden,” Rehm says. “We toured the Standard station with some members of the local hot rod club, and before we knew it they were treating us to pizza as well. Some late-night shenanigans resulted in a visit from the Valley County sheriff; some of us were glad to get out of Valley County Saturday morning.” Shenanigans, scenic rides, and opportunistic acquisitions have accompanied this fearsome foursome for many years.

On day four, the fearsome foursome closed the loop 47 miles later, returning to Bootleg Brewers’ patio for a trip-ending happy hour. Of the hundreds of bike trips Darling has embarked on with these friends and others, he ranks the Beermuda Triangle Tour near the top. “I would rate our Beermuda Triangle Tour as one of our most fun,” he says. “We had good weather, good roads, moderate mileage, and good beer.” Swanson also enjoyed the experience: “Our timing was incredible,” he says. “Despite being windy, the temperature for October was great. Microbreweries make a great finish to a day’s journey. As the industry grows in Nebraska, I hope the communities that are home to the breweries reach out to travelers of all kinds to enjoy. Our next trip visiting breweries could take us to eastern Nebraska in an urban setting or even here in central Nebraska. Who knows? Anyone can do a tour. Just pick a few destinations and peddle on.”

Darling, whose cyclist handle is “Ranger,” has been riding the highways for “at least 30 years” with Evans, 10 to 15 years with Rehm, and on several occasions over the years with Swanson.

MAY/JUNE 2018 • 60PLUS

// 91 //


// ACTIVE LIVING //

From left: Randy Darling, George Evans, Mike Swanson, and Tim Rehm

These veterans of countless BRANs, RAGRAIs, and a myriad other long-haul trips have more than 20 years of experience responsibly sharing back roads and highway shoulders with automotive traffic.

Brewery Highlights Bootleg Brewers, Sandhills Brewing Co. Rehm: “I got lost on my way and missed my turn on [Highway] 183 and ended up in Loup City, so I had to do a little gravel travel to catch up to the boys. Although the others had a head start, there was still a lot of fun to be had. I think by night’s end, Mike had his bike in the taproom. I was amazed at the considerable investment made at Bootleggers; it’s a beautiful spot.”

// 92 //

60PLUS • MAY/JUNE 2018

Scratchtown Brewing Co. Kinkaider Brewing Co. Darling: “Scratchtown was a pleasant surprise for me. They are a small brewery, and the beer exceeded my expectations. The locals were friendly. We nearly had too much fun and narrowly avoided trouble with the county sheriff.” Swanson: “The locals we shared beer with and the stop at the high school football game were memorable.”

Darling: “Broken Bow is a pleasant rural town with all the services we needed in addition to Kinkaider Brewing. The Arrow Hotel provided a nice evening meal.” Rehm: “It’s always fun to be there as we have gotten acquainted with the ownership in previous stops. It was probably our shortest happy hour of the trip as it had been a long, windy day. We had a great meal at the Bonfire Grill in the historic Arrow Hotel in downtown Broken Bow.”


A windmill stands near the road to Bootleg Brewers on the brewery property.


// ACTIVE LIVING //

Bootleg Brewers, Sandhills Brewing Co. 45145 829th Road, Taylor, NE 68879 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Tues.-Sun. (winter hours vary) 308.942.3440 bootlegbrewers.com Nestled on 40 acres of ranchland in the Sandhills, Bootleg Brewers is a small brewery that fulfills a dream of longtime home brewer Ron Worm. In fact, its flagship beer, “Cling On,” was born in his basement 17 years ago. As the brewery’s website details in its background story: “Out of this passion for brewing, Ron created an all-grain brew system in the basement of their home out of common household items. With a little ingenuity, he went on to work on creating a session beer he loved. From that hard work, Cling On was created. Cling On got its name because of the large amount of grains required to make this tasty brew, which also increases the ABV to about 7%. Easy drinking and high in alcohol can sneak up on you and before you know it, you are looking for something or someone to ‘Cling On’ to. Sorry, Star Trek fans, no relation here.” The brewmaster garnered a reputation for sharing beer and advice with fellow homebrewers. In turn, he started his own brew club in 2001 called Bootleg Brewers. Finally, on May 17, 2016, Bootleg Brewers became a licensed brewery, the first to be officially established in Nebraska’s picturesque Sandhills region. Owners: The family-owned brewery is operated by Ron and Dodie Worm (husband and wife) with support from daughter Jody Worm. Ron is head brewer and Dodie cooks and manages the kitchen staff. Other family members manage the bar and sales. Facilities: The brewery features a two-tiered beer garden; full kitchen with extensive menu; main taproom; cabins (four eight-person cabins at $175 per night and one six-person cabin at $150 per night). Beers on tap (as of March 2018): • Cling On (session wheat), ABV 6% • Sandhills Ale (cream style), ABV 4.7% • Ass Blaster (jalapeño spiced/herbed), ABV 5.9% • Horned Hereford (Irish red ale), ABV 4.4% • Hoppy Homesteader (IPA), ABV 5.4% • Naked Orange Stinger (spiced/herbed), ABV 5.4% • Muddy Duck (English brown ale), ABV 5.7% • I.E. Oatmeal Stout (stout), ABV 6.5% • 2nd Run (amber wheat ale), ABV 6.8% • Toasted Wheat (wheat ale), ABV 5.3% // 94 //

60PLUS • MAY/JUNE 2018

Scratchtown Brewing Co.

Kinkaider Brewing Co.

141 South 16th St., Ord, NE 68862 4-10 p.m. Thurs. and Fri.; 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Sat. 308.728.5050 scratchtown.beer

43860 Paulsen Road, Broken Bow, NE 68822 4-10 p.m. Tues.-Thurs.; 4-11 p.m. Fri.; and 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Sat. 308.872.8348 kinkaiderbrewing.com

Located in the heart of downtown Ord, Scratchtown has made this quaint village a craft beer destination from its start in 2013. Its American imperial porter, called “Black Eye,” claimed the gold medal at the U.S. Beer Open Championship in 2015. Scratchtown derives its name from the town namesake, Gen. Edward Ord, who remarked that swarms of mosquitos irritated his crew, prompting a lot of “scratching.” The brewery boasts that its beers are made with the purest water in the United States, drawing from the Ogallala Aquifer. Although the owners initially founded the brewery on the notion that they could draw tourists in from nearby lakes and rivers, Jade Stunkel, one of the owners, was pleasantly surprised at the number of customers who are making the trek to Ord simply to drink good craft brew. “The other day, a busload of 40 to 50 people came in from Grand Island,” he says. “They were stopping at two or three breweries and sampling a lot of beer. In November we are expecting another group.” Plain and simple, craft brew lovers know their way to Scratchtown. Owners: Mike Klimek, Caleb Pollard, Jade Stunkel, and Shay Reilly. Facilities: Taproom, bar, and beer garden. Events: Scratchtoberfest in October, The Darkest Day in winter, and other seasonal events (often to benefit philanthropic causes). The Darkest Day event is held the Saturday closest to Dec. 21, the shortest day of the year, and features 10 to 11 of their dark brews. Beers on tap (as of March 2018): • Sideburns’ (milk stout), ABV 4.3% • MMR (brown ale), ABV 5.5% • Wonder Twins (double IPA), ABV 7.9% • I Don’t Get It (honey blonde ale), ABV 5.4% • Big Joe (Pilsner), ABV 4.7% • Nugglehead (Nebraska pale ale), ABV 5.2% • (Bottle only) Barrel-Aged Lord of Ord (imperial oatmeal stout), ABV 12.9% • (Bottle only) Barrel-Aged Shay’s Calling (doppelbock), ABV 9.2%

Located one mile north of Broken Bow, the brewery is named after the Kinkaid Act of 1904, legislation that increased the 160-acre land allotment of the Homestead Act to 640 acres in 37 northwestern Nebraska counties. The brewery sits on Fox Farms’ land, owned by Barry Fox. Kinkaider Brewery opened its doors in 2014. Highlights for Kinkaider include being the first brewery in Nebraska to offer crowlers (32-ounce, fill-at-the-bar aluminum cans) and local ingredients, such as pumpkins, honey, apples, and jalapeños grown on the farm. Crossover beers—some people call them “entry-level” or “gateway” beers for novice craft brew drinkers—are a hit with Kinkaider customers. Big sellers in this category are “Dan the Wiser Kolsch” and “Herd Law Honey Wheat.” “Dan the Wiser [named for the brewmaster Dan Hodges] is their introductory beer,” says Thomas Cooper, assistant brewmaster. “Noncraft beer drinkers are like, ‘Oh, that’s pretty good.’ There was a lady in here the other day who asked for Bud Light, and I believe Cody told her we only serve American beers here. She was like, ‘What do you mean?’ We told her Busch is now owned by InBev, a Belgium company. She was absolutely floored. She walked out with a case of Dan the Wiser.” Kinkaider has bottled a dozen or so of its beers. The brewery always has 12 craft brews on tap. Owners: Nate Bell, Cody Schmick, Dan Hodges, and Barry Fox. Facilities: Taproom, bar, restaurant, beer garden patio, and indoor event center. Beers on tap (as of March 2018): • Dan the Wiser (Kölsch), ABV 4.3% • Hiram’s Bones (porter), ABV 4.5% • Herd Law Honey Wheat (American wheat pale ale), ABV 4.8% • Stick’em (altbier), ABV 5.8% • 4-County Pale Ale (American pale ale), ABV 5.5% • Hopalong Cassidy (American pale ale), ABV 4.8%


• Smoked Alt (smoked beer), ABV 6.4% • Story Horse Irish Red (Irish red ale), ABV 5.2% • Nitro Oatmeal Stout (oatmeal stout), ABV 6.3% • Snozzberry (sour), ABV 5.9% • Snow Beast Winter Ale (winter ale), ABV 7% • Devil’s Gap Jalapeño (spiced/herbed), ABV 4.7% • Claimstaker (Irish stout), ABV 5.4% • KBC Champion (cream ale), ABV 4.2%

About the author: Rod Howe, 63, taught journalism at Westside High School for 23 years in Omaha. He retired in 2013. Although not a bicycle rider, he loves craft beer and country roads. In the summer of 2016, at a weekend gathering in North Platte at the home of Randy Darling (his brother-inlaw), Howe became intrigued by the friends’ plans to embark on the brewery and bicycle ride in the fall. Thus, he conspired with the riders to follow them via automobile with camera, notebook, and tape recorder in October 2016. Cyclist ages noted in the article reflect ages at the time of the ride.

There’s a lot to at

cheer about

For starters, our lifestyle. We don’t settle for providing a place for people to just stay. Instead, we seek to make every part of every day truly engaging to the individuals who live with us — providing them with real joy and fulfillment. Here, we’re all about experiences.

Do more. Engage more. Live more. Call for more information about the CountryHouse approach to memory care. Omaha | 402•403•6346 5030 South 155th Street Omaha, NE 68137

Council Bluffs | 712•522•2986 1831 E. Kanesville Blvd. Council Bluffs, IA 51503 CountryHouse.net

CountryHouse is part of the Agemark family of senior living communities.

Welcome to Your Next Chapter in Life! Come and enjoy our warm, inviting community in the beautiful countryside of Bennington, NE. Our community offers a serene and quiet setting in the country, along with a safe, secure and maintenance-free lifestyle. Love the way you live at Ridgewood!

offering

Independent Living Assisted Living Memory Care CALL HALLE TODAY FOR YOUR PERSONAL TOUR!

402.884.7644 12301 N 149TH CIRCLE BENNINGTON, NE 68007 www.ridgewoodseniorcommunity.com

MAY/JUNE 2018 • 60PLUS

// 95 //


PASSION // STORY BY DAISY HUTZELL-RODMAN // PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

F

The Rambling and Rhyming , of Frank O’Neal RANK S. O’NEAL published his first

book of poetry in 2010 at age 62. In 2017, the Nebraska Arts Council exhibited his surrealist poetry video (a collaboration between the scribe and cinematographer Jason Fischer) for O’Neal’s poem “I Do Not Use The N-Word.” The African-American wordsmith uses his craft to actualize activism as a historian and North Omaha resident. The versifier is also a voyager: “Had I not traveled, I would not be able to write,” O’Neal says. He started globetrotting in 1968 when he enlisted in the U.S. Coast Guard. He trained in the medical field and traveled with the Icebreaker Support Section. The seafarer sailed across the North Pole and the South Pole. During the return journey from his cruise to the Antarctic, he and his fellow Coast Guard members were pleased to learn that they would be coming through Rio de Janeiro during the famed Carnival—but Lady Luck was not on their side that night. “We had to wait,” O’Neal says. “The last night of Carnival, we were sitting there, in Rio, waiting on a ship. By the time we got ashore—it was over. We got them back, though. My commander had us stay there three extra days.” After his discharge from the Coast Guard in 1974, he worked for Bethlehem Steel in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, as an industrial paramedic driving an ambulance from the work sites when an injury or accident was reported. O’Neal relocated to Omaha in 1978, but not for long. In 1980, he traveled with his thengirlfriend to Dallas, Texas. “I figured it was a good opportunity,” the lighthearted lyricist says. He found a job with a hospital, and in 1983, he switched careers and began to work in communications installation for Motorola.

// 96 //

60PLUS • MAY/JUNE 2018

He also began to rework himself into a rhapsodist. At age 35, O’Neal began to write as a way to reflect on his experiences. He’d been in and out of relationships, of homes, of cities, and he saw a world that engaged and perplexed him. “I think he’s a talented writer. He writes with honesty, authenticity, and courage,” says Lisa Pelto, president of Concierge Marketing Inc., the company that has published his books. In 1990 O’Neal switched from a salaried employee to a contract position at Motorola. After the corporation secured a contract to provide a mobile-communications network in Kuwait, O’Neal joined the team arriving in Kuwait City one week after the U.S.-led military liberation of the Persian Gulf state in early 1991. “We went through Kuwait…seeing all the broke-down cars, all the tanks, fires,” O’Neal says with a shake of his head. “I thought I was in hell.” In a scrapbook filled with mementos, a fiery mushroom cloud rises over an oil field on the first page. Other photos in the book show the newly liberated city at its worst…and best. “That was an experience I needed to have as far as the circle of life,” O’Neal says. “The beauty of working overseas was being able to hear stories from people in other countries.” During his time in Kuwait, he toiled 12-hour days, setting up the infrastructure to put in a computerized communications system for oil wells. It was a grueling job, but one O’Neal worked with his signature confidence, and not much sleep. O’Neal’s time in Kuwait enabled him to float further. In 1993, he traveled to Jamaica to be part of the crew creating the infrastructure for a new communications system. He waxes poetic about embracing the culture, and he picked up the Jamaican patois language within a couple of months.

“It was beautiful being on the island for that long,” O’Neal says. “You can take seeds of any kind, and within the germination period the plant will grow. I’ve never seen soil so fertile.” He now considers Jamaica his second home. He contentedly adventured through the U.S. on communications assignments until 2006, when he returned to Omaha to help his ailing parents. He spent time with his father, Frank Seavron O’Neal, in the last three weeks of his father’s life gathering family history, listening to stories he never heard before…and garnering advice that would impact his life. “Frank Sandy, finish it,” he says, recalling his father’s advice (both men had the middle initial “S.”). O’Neal had shown his father a collection of poems that would eventually appear in his first book of poetry. He took his father’s advice. Three years later, O’Neal’s first book came out in print, and he began reading at poetry engagements, meandering the Omaha metro. He has assembled four anthologies, is regularly petitioned to perform, and he could not be happier. “He has a voice that is worth listening to,” says Pelto, his publisher who is white. “Initially, when I read the poems, I thought it was a good peek into the life of a black man.” Each step of O’Neal’s story reads like a chapter in a book. “This has been a beautiful journey,” he says. “I enjoy my life to the fullest, because every bit of my life has had a purpose and a meaning to it.” Visit Frank O’Neal’s Facebook page, @franksoneal, for more information.


e r d i n n gs a w

of a Wordsmith


FAITH // STORY BY NATALIE SCHNEIDER BROOKS // PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

LEPROSY, COMMUNIST REVOLUTIONARIES, AND A GUN TO HER BACK Barbara Entz’s Missionary Path to Africa and Back

I

Entz’s family moved to Omaha after a blind evangelist from the city, J.J. Esau, told her father to become a minister. Esau was in public relations with the nondenominational Grace Bible Institute when he inspired the Entz family to relocate from New Port, Washington. N 1948, BARBARA

After the attack, in 1976, the Entz family left Ethiopia. Paul and Barbara moved first to Nigeria and then to Kenya (in 1979) to create radio programs, broadcasting the Bible back to Ethiopia. The married missionaries had five children, several of whom were born in Africa. In 1992, they returned to a more stable Ethiopia before finally retiring to Omaha in 1996.

After graduating from Central High School, Barbara attended what would later become Grace University, where she met her husband, Paul. Their shared calling to the missionary field propelled them across the ocean to Ethiopia in September 1957. Education was important for Barbara during her time in Africa. She educated local women at her home, and she taught at an elementary school. Shortly after arriving in Ethiopia, Paul and Barbara were placed in charge of a leprosarium. Barbara explains, “When we came, we said, ‘There’s no need for some of these to be here a lifetime. Let’s make a two-year program.’” During the two years of the program designed by the young couple, patients would work and receive an education before returning to their communities. The former leprosy patients were no longer outcasts; their education transformed them into respected teachers.

trouble.” As she pushed the gun away, it went off, and 33 shotgun pellets found their way into Barbara’s back. Miraculously, none of them hit her spinal column or any organs.

I saw these men with the guns right in my face. Two thoughts came to my mind: get that gun out of my face and let somebody know you’re in trouble.

However, not everyone was receptive to outsiders. The communist movement in Ethiopia soon took advantage of widespread famine to spark outrage against the government and foreign visitors. “That’s when they began talking about Americans,” Barbara explains, “[They were saying] ‘Yankees go home!’ And teachers [at] the schools were being accused of things.”

Because of the rising tensions, the Entzes moved to another town to help with famine relief efforts. Even then, they weren’t safe. Emperor Haile Selassie was assassinated and the transition to a communist government began. One night, Barbara went outside with her two daughters. She remembers vividly, “I saw these men with the guns right in my face. Two thoughts came to my mind: get that gun out of my face and let somebody know you’re in

In Omaha, Barbara remains dedicated to improving the community around her. She’s helped immigrants learn English and founded the International Women’s Club to create a new community for foreign women. Hadeel Haidar (originally from Iraq) describes the support the club provides: “One of the ladies here, she’s from Egypt, and she was delivering a baby. Two of those ladies went to the hospital and spent the night with her because she doesn’t have a family.” Barbara doesn’t seek praise or recognition to motivate her community work. “I don’t need an article about me to give me selfworth; I have that in my status with God. I have such a great family and their love, and so many friends of all nationalities—I am content and happy with my life.”

Her living room is a museum of items showcasing her past: metal crosses on the wall, photo albums, carved wooden statues of African animals, and mugs printed with religious art and Ethiopia’s Amharic alphabet. She may have left Africa, but her lifelong mission to help others remains active. Omaha International Women’s Club meets every other Thursday, usually at The Bible Church (9001 Q St.), 9:30 a.m. to noon. The organization also maintains a Facebook page.

MAY/JUNE 2018 • 60PLUS

// 99 //


My Summer Adventure of ‘72...

// NOSTALGIA // STORY BY RONALD AHRENS PHOTOGRAPHY PROVIDED BY DURHAM MUSEUM // DESIGN & ILLUSTRATION BY MATT WIECZOREK

GUEST-STARRING AT OMAHA’S FIRST DRIVE-IN 60PLUS

// 100 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


// NOSTALGIA //

I

of 1972, I discovered the power of a f lashlight with an orange wand. N THE SUMMER

Nobody had ever paid attention to me—an undersized 16-year-old—until I worked at the 76th & West Dodge Drive-In and accepted that mighty Eveready-powered scepter. Cars went where I pointed. Sneakins crawling out of trunks trembled in the beam and then marched to the box office to buy tickets. The wallop of authority was mine, at $1.35 per hour, ushering at Omaha’s first drive-in theater. The manager, Gil, and assistant, Sam (fresh from the Navy in San Diego and owner of a new Nova), ran the joint. It had opened in 1948. That was 15 years after the first drivein theater opened in Camden, New Jersey. The enticement for Omahans (as a local newspaper ad claimed) was privacy and comfort. “Smoke, talk, take refreshments, all without disturbing others!” Adults paid 60 cents, kiddos were free, and no need to rub against all those germy people in a proper theater. Other drive-ins would follow: the Sky View near 72nd Street and Military Avenue, the Golden Spike at 114th Street and West Dodge Road, and the Q Twin at 108th and Q streets. Besides the glory of receiving my first paychecks, it was a summer of warm nights and hot snack-bar girls. I was smitten with the shy blonde from Papillion. As I remember, she was the projectionist’s daughter. He toiled with those reels as a second job, getting by on little sleep. The box office ladies were earning a little extra for their families, too. The brunette who completed the snack bar staff returned with her boyfriend on a night off, and their Pinto hatchback with wide rear glass let them display their passions.

I reported for work at 6 p.m. Right away one evening, still new at the job, I was asked to replace the bulb in one of the tower flood lamps. The screen tower had its own self-supporting internal structure and was enclosed, providing shelter for the many pigeons that roosted inside, coming and going through an unknown opening. Carrying a large new bulb during the long climb up the internal ladder, I emerged through a hatch onto the narrow roof and had the unprecedented experience of being untethered and confident above the city. When a couple of early-arriving patrons honked in acknowledgment, it was my first starring role. Catching sneak-ins before showtime was important and returned several times my hourly pay. Obscured by a tree limb, I sat waiting atop the back fence. Cars drove right up to that point; the driver got out and opened the trunk; and one, two, or three people climbed out. Before they could even take a step, I vaulted off the fence, shook my scepter, and exclaimed, “You’re gonna have to pay!” Seeing grown-ups quiver was gratifying. One Carter Lake motorcycle gang-type wasn’t impressed, though. He snatched away my scepter and chucked it, the beam rotating on its own axis, clear to the snack bar’s roof. Then he walked through the theater and got into a car four rows from the front, near the lot’s exit. Gil called the cops, but the subjects drove away too soon. One night my friend John Fulmer was visiting to see how I ruled over the place. After dark, we got some action when two kids came flying over the east fence. I chased them back over, and with no firm plan in mind, pursued full speed beyond the property into an open field until one of the pursued turned midstride and delivered a shot

of pepper spray. For some reason, before fumbling them, I’d been holding onto the keys to John’s blue Malibu. I made it back to the snack bar, where sympathetic Gil oversaw my eye-washing. Meanwhile, John put on his X-ray specs and found the keys. The B-movies shown that summer were instructive. Reflecting Sartre’s ill effect on cinema, Vanishing Point gave us existential hero Kowalski in a cross-country chase movie. Star actor Barry Newman was a second-rate Steve McQueen, but the Dodge Challenger excelled in its role. And making for an even better movie, a naked hippie girl rode a Honda! The chase ended when Kowalski crashed the Challenger into a Nevada roadblock, and the audience understood that life is meaningless. The plot creaked like the screen tower’s structure in the wind. No matter, though, the movie achieved masterpiece status by holding over a second big week. Popcorn sales kept the snack-bar girls humming. At my hiring, no one had mentioned cleanup duties. After getting home around 2 a.m. on weekend triple-feature nights, I was expected back at 8 a.m. to poke around with a steel spike on a long shaft and fill trash bags. Patrons left everything on the ground but their acne. Besides snack bar purchases, they dumped ashtrays, beer cans, diapers, and to limit future diapers, family planning measures. Old South Omaha Joe, the wizened authority of theater cleanup, soloed on weekdays. Come the weekend, three of us split up the lot. In his 70s—I couldn’t believe such a fossil could still work— Joe and his spiked-stick covered about three or four times my territory. Sunday mornings were the worst, and the closer to noon, the more putrid it all was.

NOBODY HAD EVER PAID ATTENTION TO ME... UNTIL I... ACCEPTED THAT MIGHTY EVEREADY-POWERED SCEPTER. 60PLUS

// 101 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


// NOSTALGIA //

Read Omaha Magazine, plant trees!

The 76th & West Dodge Drive-In in the 1960s

The initiative, called Print Relief, plants the number of trees equal to our printing needs by calculating the trees consumed by the printing of our magazine. We plant the number of trees equal to our tree usage in endangered forests in Brazil, Mexico, Madagascar, the Dominican we will plant a tree Republic, Burkina Faso, and Ethiopia.

For every tree-worth of paper we use printing OMAHA MAGAZINE.

IN THE NEXT YEAR ALONE, THIS INTERNATIONAL PrintReleaf certified partner. PROGRAM WILL ALLOW US TO BE RESPONSIBLE Please recycle your used magazines. FOR THE PLANTING OF ALMOST 11,096 SAPLINGS AROUND THE GLOBE.

When we took a fresh-air break inside the snack bar, indefatigable Joe capered around to the tunes of the Big Joe Polka Show.

HELP GIVE

OUR MILITARY FAMILIES A HELPING HAND.

Wounded Warriors Family Support (WWFS) is an independent nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve the quality of life for our combat wounded. Earning Charity Navigator’s highest four-star rating and listed among Consumer Reports “Top Rated Veteran Charities,” WWFS serves veterans and their families across the country in a variety of ways: Respite Care, Family Retreats, Mobility-equipped Vehicles and Welding Training.

wwfs.org

CFC# 81534 // 102 //

60PLUS • MAY/JUNE 2018

Changing the marquee was a Thursdaynight ritual. Our big sign sat on a steel structure near the street. Two of us climbed up with boxes of plastic letters that snapped into metal tracks, and we concentrated on our spelling despite the din of honking horns. Besides Vanishing Point, Omahans had a taste for material that derived from another French writer, de Sade. In their service came my introduction to porn. Women-in-prison films—“Soft young girls behind hard prison bars”—were nearly mainstream in those days. I thought about reminding Gil that I wasn’t old enough to see R-rated movies, then got a grip and entered the sordid world of Roger Corman, starring Pam Grier. My parents had no idea! Gil and Sam had been awfully nice, so I felt bad about putting down my scepter and going back to school. The lessons from that summer—handling large mowers, directing traffic, kicking ass, and not being a glutton


// NOSTALGIA //

Remodeling•Updates Mobility Needs

A Division of 2018 WINNER

12739 Q Street • 402.408.1990 www.KohllsModSquad.com

SM

VISIT PEARLEVISION.COM TO SCHEDULE YOUR EYE EXAM* Eye exams available by Dr. John Herbolsheimer, Optometrist & Associates

for free popcorn—stayed with me. I can say that I never misused my authority, getting too bossy or smart when marching detainees to the box office or pranking patrons by faking police sirens in their moment of ecstasy.

Bellevue 3906 Twin Creek Dr.

La Vista 8146 S. 96th Street

402-932-8007

402-934-2034 Most major health and vision plans accepted, including

The 76th & West Dodge Drive-In closed in 1983, and retail space occupied the site. Until the other day, I thought drive-in theaters were passé. Then Elon Musk said he wants one at a Tesla charging location in Los Angeles. The outdoor screen would display “a highlight reel of the best scenes in movie history,” Musk tweeted. I presume that among them we would not find any from Women in Cages. But Musk should think hard about the likelihood of Tesla owners being the only people on earth who don’t litter. Just wait. They’ll open their gull-wing doors and throw out herbal tea bags and energy bar wrappers like other humans. And another point: providential managers like Gil and Sam, hot snackbar girls like the Papio Blonde, and a quick man with a stick like South Omaha Joe are hard to find. An usher with some attitude is good to have around, too.

FAMILY OWNED, FAMILY FOCUSED. Providing personalized care with compassion and dignity.

COME SEE FOR YOURSELF W H AT T H E D I F F E R E N C E I S ! A S S I S T E D L I V I N G A N D M E M O RY C A R E 14325 Eagle Run Drive / Omaha, NE 68164 Inquiries: 402.249.6050 / Main: 402.498.9554 www.parsonshouseoneaglerun.com MAY/JUNE 2018 • 60PLUS

// 103 //


SHORT-TERM REHABILITATION | SKILLED NURSING

SECTION // NAMES

Sometimes heroes don’t wear capes, they simply wear a smile... and their superpowers are patience, empathy, and compassion. At Brookstone Meadows, we know heroes. Our team members are committed to making a positive difference in the lives of those they serve and care for. So whether you are in need of rehabilitation, skilled nursing, or memory support you’ll always find heroic care here. Stop in for a visit today!

Members of Vetter Senior Living

To find out more about our Rehabilitation & Skilled Nursing care, or to join our team, visit vetterseniorliving.com 600 Brookestone Meadows Plaza Elkhorn, NE 68022 | (402) 289-2696 BrookestoneMeadows.com Celebrating Serving Seniors for 10 Years

40 Years of Professional & Trusted Service

Dr. Roger Mc Gargill It Doesn’t Cost Any More to Have a Doctor You Can Trust

402.558.0440 www.proaudiology.com 4509 Leavenworth

Worried About Mom or Dad? Come for a visit and see all that Elk Ridge Village has to offer! Beautiful Location & Surroundings Excellent Restaurant Style Dining Exciting Activities & Events Library & Theater Transportation Housekeeping 24/7 Staffing Underground Parking

CALL KRISTINA TODAY FOR YOUR PERSONAL TOUR!

402.312.1198

19303 Seward Plaza Omaha, Ne 68022 (Just North of 192nd & Dodge)

ElkRidgeSeniorLiving.com

INDEPENDENT LIVING | ASSISTED LIVING | ALZHEIMER’S CARE

Always Local, Always Beautiful // 104 //

60PLUS • MAY/JUNE 2018


OBVIOUSLY OMAHA // STORY BY LINDA PERSIGEHL // PHOTOGRAPHY PROVIDED

01

The Oracle of Omaha’s Edible Investments Berkshire Hathaway Shareholders Come to Town

EVERY SPRING, BERKSHIRE Hathaway shareholders from around the globe convene in Omaha to

hear the financial wisdom of legendary investors Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger. Shareholders also partake of some good grub. The annual Berkshire shareholders meeting's organizers present attendees with an array of savory bites and tasty treats in the days surrounding the event. This year, Berkshire subsidiary Borsheims will host a private cocktail reception for shareholders Friday, May 4 (6-9 p.m.), at Regency Court Shopping Center. The big tent will include live music and a complimentary bar and buffet featuring gourmet appetizers and a carving station provided by Abraham Catering. Indoors, guests shopping for designer jewelry and fine gifts will have access to a second buffet and bar. Investors may return for a complimentary brunch Sunday (9 a.m. to 4 p.m.) at Regency Court. Again, there’ll be live music, and guests can play table tennis with a former Olympian or partake in a game of bridge (one of Buffett’s favorite pastimes). Though not promised, Buffett may swing by for a bite and mingle with guests. Subsidiary Nebraska Furniture Mart will hold a shareholders picnic Saturday (5:30-8 p.m.) at its Omaha and Texas locations. Cost is $5 and will cover food-truck fare and entertainment. Visitors looking to enjoy a good cut of Midwestern beef have another option. Gorat’s Steak House, one of Buffett’s preferred business lunch spots, will host a shareholders’ steak special from noon to 10 p.m. on Sunday. Reservations are required and space is limited, so red-meat lovers should act quickly. A major tenet of Buffett’s investing strategy is “buy what you know,” and one thing the Oracle of Omaha knows well is America’s much-loved food brands. Here’s a partial list of Berkshire’s food/beverage subsidiaries and holdings.

02 01. DAIRY QUEEN The soft-serve ice cream and fast-food chain is one of Buffett’s favorite investments, as he regularly frequents his neighborhood store for a treat—typically a sundae loaded with cherry topping and nuts. Berkshire purchased DQ in 1997. Today, the chain boasts more than 6,000 restaurants worldwide and is valued at a cool $585 million. During Berkshire weekend, $1 Dilly, Fudge, and Vanilla Orange Bars and $2 Mini Blizzard Treats will be sold at the meeting, with proceeds benefitting children’s hospitals. Investors can also get “buy one, get one” deals on Blizzards at Omaha DQ stores with their credentials.

quipped, “I’m one-quarter Coca-Cola” in a 2015 Fortune magazine interview. He’s a super-fan of the classic carbonated beverage (particularly Cherry Coke) and said he drinks at least five colas every day, oftentimes for breakfast with Utz Potato Stix (another favorite). “I eat like a 6-yearold,” joked Buffett, who defies his 87 years. Berkshire first bought Coke stock in 1988. Today, its shares are worth $16.6 billion, and Coca-Cola has been deemed the world’s third most valuable brand (after Apple and Google). Of course, only Coke soft drinks will be served at Berkshire events throughout the weekend (though CenturyLink Center concessions, ironically, serve Pepsi products).

02. SEE’S CANDIES “See’s Candies became our model for investment in other quality companies,” Buffett wrote in the preface to a book about the company. Berkshire acquired the California-based, family-owned candymaker way back in 1972. Most famous for its chocolates, the retailer brought $410 million in revenue in 2016. The company’s retail website features a “Warren’s Favorites (& More)” page, which includes peanut brittle, chocolate walnut fudge, and bridge mix. During Berkshire weekend, the See’s Candies shop inside Nebraska Furniture Mart will be selling special edition shareholder candy boxes to investors.

04. KRAFT-HEINZ Berkshire partnered with 3G Capital, a Brazilian private equity firm, to buy Heinz in 2013. In 2015, it supported Heinz’s merger with Kraft Foods, making it the world’s fifth-largest food and beverage company. Its products range from cheese and dairy foods to convenience items and condiments. (Fun fact: 1 million boxes of Kraft Mac & Cheese are sold every day!) Today, as a 27 percent shareholder, Berkshire’s holdings are worth over $28 billion. In April 2016, the food conglomerate produced a Berkshire shareholders’ meeting commemorative Heinz Ketchup bottle featuring caricatures of Buffett and Munger on the label. It’s a collectible, no doubt.

03. COCA-COLA Berkshire Hathaway owns just 9 percent of the soft-drink company, but Buffett

03

04

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 105 //


// DINING FEATURE // STORY BY CAROL CRISSEY NIGRELLI PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

OMAHA HOT DOGS SWING FOR THE FENCES DURING THE COLLEGE WORLD SERIES Counterclockwise: Vis Major's banh mi brat, Chicago Dawg House's traditional style dog, Mâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Pub's carrot dog, Block 16's crab rangoon dog, Fauxmaha Hot Dogs' classic veggie weenie, Blatt Beer & Table's vegan currywurst, and Vis Major's Polish sausage. Center: B&G Tasty Foods' footlong chili dog.

// 106 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


MAY/JUNE 2018

// 107 //


// DINING FEATURE //

T

HE DISTINCTIVE “PING” of a baseball

meeting a metal bat signals the start of a two-and-a-half-week lovefest in June known as the College World Series. Omahans will once again enjoy a frontrow seat to this rite of summer, just as they have since 1950.

They will watch RVs filled with Louisiana State University fans stream into town, whether or not the purple-and-gold team makes it to The Show; they will listen to showtunes warbling out of the classic 1947 Hammond organ at TD Ameritrade Park, home of the CWS; and they will help consume an ungodly amount of hot dogs. “Hot dogs go hand-in-hand with baseball. They’re near and dear to people’s hearts,” Tyler Humphrey says. He should know. As executive chef at TD Ameritrade, Humphrey and his team spend months planning, creating, and taste-testing new entries into the ballpark's cuisine—offerings fit for a fivestar restaurant, from calzones to cake. But he knows ahead of time what to order in bulk. “We can put many different food options out there, but when you look at your top-three sellers, hot dogs will be right there in the mix, if not at the top,” he says. The Americanization of a German and Austrian food staple began in ballparks 120 years ago. Historians, including Ken Burns in his definitive documentary Baseball, single out British immigrant and veteran concessionaire Harry Stevens for discovering the perfect stadium fare.

THE CURRENT $2.4 BILLIONA-YEAR AMERICAN HOT DOG INDUSTRY OWES A TIP OF THE CAP TO BALLPARKS BIG AND SMALL, AND OMAHA ADDS TO THE KITTY.

// 108 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

One cold spring day in 1901 at the old Polo Grounds, home of the New York (baseball) Giants, Stevens realized the ice cream wasn’t selling. He sent out for German “dachshund sausages,” boiled them, slipped them into rolls, and had his hawkers go into the stands shouting, “Get 'em while they’re hot!” The current $2.4 billion-a-year American hot dog industry owes a tip of the cap to ballparks big and small, and Omaha adds to the kitty. Last year, CWS fans ate nearly 50,000 of the park’s all-beef franks. The total number does not include sales of the hot dog’s pork-based cousins, sausage and bratwurst. As for toppings, the basics still rule. “We do a quarter-pound hot dog called the 10th Street Classic, which is pretty popular here. But it’s simple—just caramelized onions, green sweet relish, and yellow mustard,” Humphrey says. “In the end, that’s how I’m going to have [my hot dog].” Simplicity doesn’t keep the chef and his culinary crew from having fun and mixing things up. They present four or five new “loaded” dog options every season. The unveiling of the 2018 CWS menu occurs a week before the first pitch. Past loaded favorites include Humphrey’s ode to his small-town Iowa roots, the Hawg Dog. “Iowa is known for pork, so we loaded the hot dog with pulled pork, candied bacon, and spicy pork rinds,” he says. “We’ve come so very far from chili and cheese sauce.” But in Omaha, land of the Runza and home of the Reuben, do hot dogs make it to first base outside the ballpark? “Absolutely,” says Kelly Keegan, restaurant owner and president of the Omaha Food Truck Association. In 2012, the Omaha native put his money where his taste buds are and bought the Chicago Dawg House, located in Midtown Crossing. This mecca for Chicago foodies leads a list of favorite local dog joints.


TOP DOGS IN THE METRO BEER 'N' BRATS

VEGGIE WEENIES

Chicago Dawg House 3157 Farnam St. 402.504.1234

Barchen Beer Garden 6209 Maple St. 402.502.9902

Fauxmaha Hot Dogs Locations Vary (updated on Facebook)

Owner Kelly Keegan gets his hot dogs from Chicago, so little wonder the Traditional Style Hot Dawg is the biggest seller in this Cubsthemed restaurant. The all-beef dawg comes on a steamed poppy seed bun with tomato, pickle spear, neon green relish, onions, yellow mustard, sport peppers, and celery salt. In Chicago, putting ketchup on a hot dog will get your tie clipped. But Keegan insists, “I’m not a purist.”

Bless the Germans for perfecting the confluence of salt and suds. At this authentic beer garden in Benson, diners can feast over a wooden board filled with eight different sausages, brats, and pretzel buns. Ask manager Andrew Miller for the correct pronunciation of Barchen.

B&B Classic Dogs 1020 Lincoln Road (Bellevue) 402.905.9541 The arcade draws the kids, the wine and beer attract Offutt Air Force Base personnel, and a Disney World of toppings (including peanut butter and bacon or marshmallow sauce) brings in the masses. Every year, B&B employees dream up a loaded dog recipe for each team in the CWS. May the best team, and dog, win. B&G Tasty Foods 7900 W. Dodge Road 402.390.6096 In the same location since 1953 and retaining its ’50s charm, B&G bills itself as the “Home of the Loose Meat Sandwich.” But the hot dogs, chili dogs, foot longs, and veggie dogs sell like hot cakes. Wash them down with the Shake of the Week.

WANTON WONTONS Block 16 1611 Farnam St. 402.342.1220 Block 16 owner Paul Urban credits his wife, Jessica, for creating the blockbuster Crab Rangoon Dog. They wrap a wonton around an Imperial Wagyu frank, fry it, slather Crab Rangoon cheese mix on a toasted sourdough roll, and add sweet chili sauce, Sriracha, and scallion. “It blew up. Everybody loves it,” Urban says.

Blatt Beer & Table Three locations in Omaha: North Downtown, 610 N. 12th St. (402.718.8822) Shops of Legacy, 2835 S. 170th Plaza (402.697.7802) Flagship Commons, 10000 California St. (402.932.9993) The Omaha-based bar and restaurant started south of TD Ameritrade Park in 2012 and takes its name from now-demolished Rosenblatt Stadium, the longtime home of the CWS in South Omaha. The concept, with three locations in town, has even expanded to Dallas, Texas. The magazine  Men’s Journal  named Blatt’s Vegan Currywurst among its list of “10 Awesomely Innovative Hot Dogs.” The namesake-inspired Blattwurst features a jalapeño Polish sausage or beer-braised bratwurst. 

Mick Ridgway’s vegan dog experiment has hit the jackpot. His hot dog cart has morphed into a truck and the 27-yearold bounces around town with his handmade, plant-based offerings. Toppings include pickled carrots, cilantro, and fresh mint. Locations posted on Facebook (@ fauxmahahotdogs). M’s Pub 422 S. 11th St. 402.342.2550 The Carrot Dog lives on at M’s Pub, the iconic Old Market restaurant recently risen from the ashes after a devastating fire. Marinated well over 24 hours, the carrot assumes the consistency—and grill marks— of a hot dog, but contains less guilt. 

Vis Major Brewing Co. 3501 Center St. 402.884.4082 While co-owner Tom Clements brews in the back of this new craft beer destination in the Hanscom Park neighborhood, his wife, Lindsey, takes care of the front of the house, serving up Polish sausage and beer-braised brats. Try the Buffalo, Philly, or Vietnamese Banh Mi brats and then grab some Truffle Popcorn.

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 109 //


DINING PROFILE // STORY BY COLE EPLEY // PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

THE PROPRIETOR OF the city’s only

Guatemalan restaurant says things have gone so well at Chiltepes that—barely a year after opening in South Omaha at 4833 S. 24th St.—she is already considering opening a second location in Lincoln. That’s a lofty goal for a restaurateur new to Nebraska’s dining scene. But make no mistake; Floridalma Herrera is no novice to the food industry. She has been sharpening her business acumen since she was in elementary school. The mother of five remembers breaking down 100-pound bags of beans and sugar into 1-pound packages as a schoolgirl in her native Guatemala City, where her father ran a grocery business as the country’s decades-long civil war raged around them. Once she finished her primary schooling at about 14 years old, Herrera set up shop in a local market, blending and selling juice by the cup. Her seed capital? Earnings from a cow her father sold to get the fledgling business on its feet. “I bought two blenders, a food processor, and cups,” Herrera says, noting that 10 percent of every day’s earnings went to pay her father back. Within about two years, the consummate entrepreneur had grown the business to require a refrigerator and freezer, and she had six employees churning out juice concoctions made from papayas, strawberries, bananas, and beets. Still, Herrera wanted more, and her next step would cost her some emotional capital. Herrera endured six months of silence from her father after he learned his only daughter had suddenly left her native Guatemala to pursue a better life in the United States. She was 17 years old. “My dad finally asked why,” Herrera says, “and I explained that I wanted to learn English and help the family more. I wanted more for him.”

// 110 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

Since then, Herrera has gotten what she wanted, and then some.

2016. It did more than $50,000 in business through its first two months.

She’s realized her dream of opening her own restaurant. And she also gets to spread the cultural influences from her childhood in Guatemala, making her a sort of local ambassador to a pocket of Central American culture.

Business took off so fast that by the end of the third month, Herrera had to forego hand-cranking the traditional sausage that accompanies Chiltepes’ signature dish, churrasquito chapin.

Immigrants from Central American countries like Guatemala comprise about 10 percent of Omaha’s Latino population, compared to about 81 percent who claim Mexican heritage, according to a 2015 analysis of U.S. Census data by the University of Nebraska-Omaha’s Office of Latino/Latin American Studies. Though greatly outnumbered by their former neighbors to the north, immigrants from the region are the second-largest group of Latinos living in the city. 

The charbroiled beef platter served with sides of rice and black beans doesn’t seem to have suffered any from the substitution, however; Herrera says the restaurant sells 60-85 servings of the dish on any given day. It’s a “dream come true” for Herrera, who came to Omaha in the mid-'90s after spending about five years in Los Angeles. There, she studied for eight months in culinary school before the financial pressure and risk of being an undocumented immigrant forced her to cave on that pursuit.

As a Guatemalan immigrant immersed in South Omaha’s sea of Latino culture, Herrera only had to look down the South 24th Street corridor to realize a restaurant like Chiltepes has a place in the community.

So Herrera took to working in a hodgepodge of L.A. restaurant kitchens featuring Thai, Indian, American, Italian, and Mexican food. With two children in tow, she eventually left for Nebraska, where better opportunities for her young family beckoned.

“On every single corner, there’s Mexican food, but there’s none from [Guatemala],” Herrera says. (Although, Omaha does have a few Central American restaurants serving Salvadoran cuisine.)

Although Herrera detoured into gigs on the lines at packing plants and as a personal chef before running the office for her husband’s construction company for a few years, she held tight to influences from her native culture.

Kenia Andrade, Herrera’s 19-year-old daughter who is also on staff at Chiltepes, says her family carefully renovated the space—previously home to a Mexican taqueria—so they, too, could feel at home there. “We couldn’t see the future in the little space, so we had to remodel everything,” Andrade says. If financial performance is any indicator, the community has enthusiastically embraced it. The business plan conservatively projected Chiltepes to pull in about $7,000 a month when it got off the ground in December

Dishes, such as churrasquito chapin, feature Mayan influences and Guatemalan staples that include avocados and small, thick tortillas made of masa (a traditional corn dough). “I do this because not many people know our culture,” Herrera says. “You can come in here and eat and...hear the music, see the decorations. I want to know that people understand our culture and experience a different kind of food.”  Visit Chiltepes’ Facebook page for more information at @chiltepesrestaurantomaha.


The mother of five remembers breaking down 100-pound bags of beans and sugar into 1-pound packages as a schoolgirl in her native Guatemala City, where her father ran a grocery business as the countryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s decades-long civil war raged around them.


DINING REVIEW // STORY BY MICHELE FAN // PHOTOGRAPHY BY BILL SITZMANN // DESIGN BY MATT WIECZOREK

Choo-choochoosey Sushi

MAY/JUNE

// 112 //

2018


Cal

ll Ro a i iforn


// DINING REVIEW //

WHO NEEDS A menu with pictures when the actual dishes

We also order miso soup and a bowl of pork ramen noodles with tonkatsu (a pork bone-based) soup from the waitress.

Yamato Sushi Train & Grill leaves little to the imagination with Omaha’s only sushi train.

Tuna and octopus sashimi plates are highlights of the meal. Rubbed with Nanami seasoning (a seven-chili pepper mix), the ahi tuna sashimi was seared on the outside and rare on the inside. Drizzled in lemon ponzu sauce, the octopus tastes light and refreshing with slices of lemon placed between the slices of sashimi.

are floating past your table on a carousel conveyor belt?

If you like what you see, just grab a dish. It’s a fun sushi experience that was first developed in Japan and has become popular in my hometown of Hong Kong. I visit Yamato Sushi Train & Grill for a Thursday date night. As the steady stream of sushi plates make their way down the conveyor belt, a waitress explains that the color of each sushi plate indicates its price: black plates cost $5, purple costs $4.5, red costs $4, orange costs $3, and green costs $2.5. Tongue-tied? Don’t worry. You don’t even need to know the name of what your heart desires. But be careful that you don’t grab too many items. The final bill adds up quickly with a stack of empty plates on the table. Desserts are available on the sushi merry-go-round on Fridays and weekends, in addition to the otherwise daily train of maki rolls (where all ingredients are rolled into a sheet of seaweed), gunkan maki (where a strip of seaweed wraps around the rice ball leaving room for toppings), uramaki (where the seaweed holds fillings in the inside and the rice is on the outside), sashimi (slices of raw seafood), and appetizers (such as seaweed salad and edamame) for lunch and dinner service. We snag a plate of uni (sea urchin) followed by salmon roe gunkan maki to start things off. Fresh sea urchin tastes sweet and creamy with bright and vibrant shades of yellow-orange. Yamato’s sea urchin is decent and pairs well with the juicy, red-orange salmon eggs bursting with saltwater flavor. We wait and watch for the next plate to tantalize our grabby fingers. We catch octopus sashimi with lemon ponzu sauce, spice-rubbed seared ahi tuna sashimi, seaweed salad, inari sushi (rice ball wrapped in a tofu puff), Omaha roll (with spicy lobster, cucumber, avocado, imitation crab, and mango sauce on top), eel cucumber roll, and a Naruto roll (avocado, salmon, and tuna wrapped with a slice of cucumber).

// 114 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

When asked about the most popular dish in the restaurant, both waitresses and the shop manager boasted a wide variety of menu options. The waitress recommends the bento box for its value—at $11.95, diners can select a chicken, beef, shrimp, salmon, or tofu main dish to go with side dishes including California roll, shumai, miso soup, salad, and rice. Shop manager Alex Walker says the fried rice at Yamato Sushi is “addictive” and also suggests the lo mein and pad thai. Walker says Yamato receives shipments of seafood from both coasts three times a week. Although Yamato’s owner also runs the La Vista restaurant Dragon Café (serving Chinese and Japanese cuisine), also with sushi on the menu, the two venues are very different from a design standpoint. Contrary to Dragon Café’s traditional Chinese-inspired interior design, Yamato is going for a decidedly Japanese vibe with simplified, modern décor. Hygiene and efficiency are a top priority in any establishment dealing with raw ingredients. Yamato does not disappoint. The sushi train is even enclosed with a clear roll-top lid (a feature not typical at the sushi trains I’ve experienced in Japan and Hong Kong). Walker says the train is cleaned two to three times every day. Although dishes on the sushi train were sometimes lacking in their presentation—some rolls were not as tightly rolled as they should have been—this restaurant is a must-try for local foodies or folks looking for an entertaining, fast, and convenient bite to eat.


D

an

cin

gE

el


// DINING REVIEW //

Sushi Train

From Japan to the World In Japan, Yoshiaki Shiraishi is credited with inventing “rotation sushi” to solve his staffing problem in 1958. He was inspired to deliver “no-frills sushi” on a conveyor belt after visiting the Asahi Brewery. Dubbed “sushi innovator” by The New York Times, Shiraishi perfected the art of sushi train operation at a speed of 8 centimeters (approximately 3 inches) per second to ensure safety without sacrificing efficiency. The concept was an instant hit at the Osaka World Expo in 1970. His restaurant, Genroku Sushi, expanded rapidly between the 1970s and 1990s. Genroku Sushi was introduced to Hong Kong—where I was born and raised—in the early 1990s, a time when Japanese pop culture was taking Asia by storm. Marketing its sushi at HKD $10 (approximately USD $1.28) and HKD $15 (USD $1.91) per plate, Genroku Sushi was a popular hangout for high school and college students as well as local families seeking inexpensive foreign food. Unlike traditional Japanese restaurants, rotation sushi was accessible to the mass public with a price point comparable to fast food. Sushi train chains mushroomed across Hong Kong as my generation grew up playing video games from Japan, watching J-Drama, listening to J-Pop, buying Japanese fashion and cosmetics, and learning to speak Japanese. Genroku Sushi contributed to introducing the culinary art of Japan, inspiring many to pursue travel, study, or work in Japan.

As so the rted Om nig ah iri a R an oll d

Although Genroku Sushi has lost its international footprint and can only be found in Japan today, the conveyor belt sushi concept it pioneered has gained popularity around the world. And in the fall of 2017, a sushi train finally arrived in Omaha in the form of Yamato Sushi Train & Grill.  Visit yamatosushitraingrill.com for more information.

YAMATO SUSHI TRAIN & GRILL 7429 PACIFIC ST. | 402.905.2792 FOOD SERVICE AMBIANCE PRICE OVERALL

$$$ 5 STARS POSSIBLE

// 116 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


- Sponsored Content DINING GUIDE LEGEND

$=$1-10 • $$=$10-20 • $$$=$20-30 • $$$$=$30+

AMERICAN

Left Chest 100% Options 7-31-13

DJ’S DUGOUT - $

636 N. 114th St. (402.498.8855) 1003 Capitol Ave. (402.763.9974) 10308 S. 23rd St. (402.292.9096) 2102 S. 67th St. (402.933.3533) 180th & Q St. (402.292.9096) Hwy 75 & Oak Hill Rd. (402.298.4166)

Option A

7984-2017 UpstreamAd-OmahaMagHH-2.375x2.37

Catch all of the action at six Omaha-area locations. Featuring burgers, sandwiches, wraps, salads, appetizers, and an impressive drink menu along with HD TVs and projectors. Home to Blazin’ Pianos, Omaha’s only dueling piano concept. djsdugout.com

JAMS- $$

7814 Dodge St. (402.399.8300) 1101 Harney St. in the Old Market (402.614.9333)

Jams is an Omaha restaurant legacy. An American Grill that offers a melting pot of different styles and varieties of food dishes made with high-quality ingredients that pair well with award-winning wines or creative cocktails. jamseats.com

LE PEEP - $

177th & Center St. (402.934.9914) 156th & W.Option DodgeBRd. (402.408.1728) 120th & Blondo St. (402.991.8222)

Walking Distance to CenturyLink Center & TD Ameritrade Park

402.346.9116 | 501 N. 13th Street | theMattOmaha.com

Option C

/the old mattress factory omaha

@Matt_factory

Le Peep puts a wholesome perspective on your favorite neighborhood breakfast and lunch spot. Fresh. Simple. Elegant. Inviting. We put the emphasis on people, both patrons and staff. We focus on providing each of our guests the fresh food and friendly service that they have come to expect. Open daily 6:30am-2pm. lepeepomaha.com

LISA'S RADIAL CAFE - $ 402.551.2176 817 N 40th St.

American. Cafe. Diner. Vegetarian-friendly. Gluten-free options. This old-school diner serves hearty portions of American comfort classics for breakfast and lunch. Family owned and operated. This business is a must if you’re in the area. People talk about best chicken fried steak, stuffed french toast, great coffee, and very friendly staff. Mon.-Fri. 6am-2pm., Sat. and Sun. 7am-2pm.

OLD MATTRESS FACTORY - $ 402.346.9116 501 N 13th St.

Keepin' it real in a renovated mattress factory built in 1883, remodeled in 2007 within walking distance to Omaha's major entertainment venues. Three private dining rooms for your own events, or stop in before or after any downtown Omaha event. Open daily at 11am-1am. themattomaha.com

• Food & Drink Specials Daily • 38 Big Screen TV’s • Great Food & Customer Service 18 0 th & P a c i f i c / 2 0 2 nd & M a p l e Thegoodlifeomaha.com

STELLA’S - $

402.291.6088 106 S. Galvin Rd., Bellevue

Since 1936, we’ve been making our Stella’s world-famous hamburgers the same way. The family secrets have been handed down to each owner, ensuring that your burger is the same as the one you fell in love with the first time you ever tried Stella’s. And if it’s your first time, we know you’ll be back! Mon.–Sat. 11am–9pm., Sun. closed. stellasbarandgrill.com

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 117 //


STIRNELLA - $$$ 402.932.0444 3814 Farnam St.

Stirnella is a refined gastro-pub in the historic Blackstone District, located on 38th & Farnam. Featuring local produce, proteins, beer and spirits. The menu is influenced by local ingredients with dishes from all over the world. The bar program features beer, all local beers on tap, craft cocktails, and wine. stirnella.com

TIRED TEXAN BBQ - $$ 402.991.9994 4702 S. 108th St.

Barbeque, Desserts, American (Traditional). Family owned and operated in Omaha, NE. You'll be able to taste the freshness of BBQ straight from the smoker, sliced or pulled to order. We strive to offer the finest ingredients, with the utmost freshness, in a comfortable environment.You’re family around here, and if something’s not right, be sure to let us know. Since all of our smoked products come right off the smoker, we may even sell out!! Don’t worry, we won’t let you leave hungry. Tues.-Sun. 11am-9pm, or until sold out of meat. tiredtexanbbq.com

Get aGet Little a Little Saucy. Saucy.

UPSTREAM BREWING COMPANY - $$

402.344.0200 514 S. 11th St. Upstream features an extensive menu of new American pub fare including appetizers, 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. upstreambrewing.com

SPEZIA SPECIALS SPEZIA SPECIALTIES FRESH SEAFOOD . ANGUS . FRESH SEAFOOD • ANGUS BEEF INNOVATIVE PASTA . RISOTTO INNOVATIVE PASTA • RISOTTO . FRESH GNOCCHI SALMON DAILY

ICE CREAM ECREAMERY - $

402.934.3888 5001 Underwood Ave.

GNOCCHI • FRESH SALMON DAILY

SATURDAYLUNCH LUNCH [11am-4pm] SATURDAY [11am–4 pm]

1/2 Price Cocktails pm

$10

COCKTAIL HOUR Daily 4-6

OFF ANY TICKET OVER $25 NOCASH CASH VALUE. VALUE.EXPIRES EXPIRES12/31/2011 6/30/18 NO

.

MONDAY – SATURDAY Sunday Brunch 11-2 4 – 6 PM Bottomless Mimosas and ALL COCK TAILS, GL ASS WINE AND BEERSBloody ARE HALF Marys PRICE

.

Catering CALL Private Party Rooms Walk-Ins Welcome FOR RESERVATIONS • 402-391-2950

3125 South 72nd Street

CENTRAL LOCATION • 3125 SOUTH 72ND STREET • EASY ACCESS OFF I-80 • 72ND STREET EXIT

eCreamery has been serving delicious ice cream, gelato, and sorbet since 2007 at our parlor located at 50th and Underwood in historic Dundee. You can choose from 16 best-selling flavors that rotate daily. Each flavor is hand-churned fresh with the finest ingredients by our ice cream artists. We also ship gifts nationwide. ecreamery.com

TED AND WALLY’S - $ 402.341.5827 1120 Jackson St.

Come experience the true taste of homemade ice cream in the Old Market. Since 1986, we’ve created gourmet ice cream flavors in small batches using rock salt and ice. We offer your favorites plus unique flavors like margarita, green tea, Guinness, and French toast. Special orders available. tedandwallys.com

ITALIAN

(Easy access off I-80, take 72nd Street Exit)

402.391.2950 . Call today to make your reservation

LA CASA PIZZARIA - $$ 402.556.6464 45th & Leavenworth St.

La Casa Pizzaria has been serving Omaha its legendary Neapolitanstyle pizza and pasta for 60 years now. We offer dine in, carry-out, party facilities, catering, and now pizza shipments to the 48 contiguous states. Open Tues.-Sat. at 11am and Sun. at 4:30pm. lacasapizzaria.net

LO SOLE MIO RISTORANTE ITALIANO - $$ 402.345.5656 3001 S. 32nd Ave.

Best Napa Cabernet Sauvignon and Wines from around the world Speciality Bourbon, Whiskey, Tequila, and Beer Knowledgeable and Friendly Service SHOW THIS AD FOR 10% OFF YOUR PURCHASE

// 118 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

402.301.3855 3821 N. 167th Ct. Suite 145 Omaha, NE 68116

Located in the middle of a neighborhood, surrounded by charming homes. Everyone is greeted with homemade bread, a bowl of fresh tomatoes and basil, a bowl of oven-roasted garlic cloves, special-seasoned olive oil, and at night, a jug of Chianti! The menu includes a large variety of pasta, chicken, veal, seafood, and even a delicious New York steak. Traditional dishes such as lasagna, tortellini, and eggplant parmigiana are also available. Lunch also offers panini, salads, and one of the best pizzas in town. Patio seating, full bar, and a great wine list complete the atmosphere. No reservations, except for private rooms. losolemio.com


The Art OF BAKING

FAMILY OWNED AND OPERATED SINCE 1921

RotellasBakery.com

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 119 //


PASTA AMORE - $$

402.391.2585 11027 Prairie Brook Rd.

WALKING DISTANCE

TO CENTURYLINK CENTER & TD AMERITRADE PARK YOUR PRE-GAME HE AD QUARTE RS FOR LUNCH, DINNE R OR YOUR NE XT EVE NT!

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 ossobuco. Filet mignon is 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 cannoli. Lunch: 11am-2pm Dinner: 4:30pm Reservations recommended. pastaamore.com

PITCH - $$

402. 590.2625 5021 Underwood Ave.

OpenTable Diners' Choice 2014 HotSpot Restaurants in America. Keeping up with the traditional way the first pizzas in Italy were made, our pizzas are cooked in a coal-fired oven. The menu also features seafood, hand-cut steak, housemade pastas, and a burger full of flavor! Our goal is to provide you with local, housemade, and imported ingredients. We offer a happy hour menu through the week. Our bar provides an array of in-house concoctions as well as your traditional libation. Our wine selection is wellthought and most impressive. You will enjoy Pitch! Mon. 3pm10pm Tue.-Thu. 11am-10pm, Fri.-Sat. 11am-11pm, Sun. 3-10pm. pitchpizzeria.com

SPEZIA - $$$

402.391.2950 3125 S. 72nd St.

501 N. 13 TH ST • 402.346.9116 • THEMATTOMAHA.COM @Matt_factory

/ theoldmattresfactoryomaha

KOREA GARDEN

Choose Spezia for lunch or dinner, where you'll find a casual elegance that's perfect for business guests, get-togethers, or any special occasion. Exceptional food, wine, and service, with a delectable menu: fresh seafood, Certified Angus steaks, innovative pasta, risotto, gnocchi, cioppino, lamb, entrée salads, Mediterranean chicken, flatbreads, and fresh salmon daily. Enjoy a full bar, Italian and California wines, Anniversary/Lovers' Booth (call to reserve), private dining rooms, and wood-fired grill. Open Mon.-Sun. Cocktail hour: 4-6pm, when all cocktails, glass wine, and beers are half price. Evening reservations recommended. speziarestaurant.com

MEXICAN

Authentic Korean Cuisine & Sushi

FERNANDO’S - $

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. Mon.-Thu., 11am-10pm; Fri.-Sat., 11am-11pm; Sun., 4-9pm. fernandosomaha.com

Thank You, Thank You,

Thank You

402.505.4089

5352 S 72nd St / Ralston, NE 68127 koreangardenomaha.com

For Continually Voting For Us!

Serving Lunch & Dinner Mon-Sat 3001 S. 32nd Ave / Omaha, NE 402.345.5656

Also, the filet is amazing!!

(and don’t forget the cannolis!!!!)

JULIO’S - $

402.330.2110 2820 S. 123rd Ct. Local owned since 1977, Julio’s prides themselves on serving the finest Tex-Mex cuisine and offering top-notch customer service. Their loyal customers are the reason they have been around for nearly 40 years. They have an extensive menu that has both classic and innovative dishes—giving everyone the opportunity to find something they love. Salivating for Southwestern fare? They have tacos, tostadas, a dozen different enchiladas, and classic fajitas. And of course— NACHOS!

julios.com

LA MESA - $$

lunch Tues-Fri: 11AM-2PM Dinner Tues-Sat: 4:30PM-Close Meals to order prepared by Chef And owner Lillo Fascianella from Sicily. Specializing in seafood and pasta dishes.

// 120 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

Rockbrook Village (108th & Center) 402.391.2585 www.pastaamore.com

Like Us on Facebook

158th & W. Maple Rd. 156th & Q Sts. (402.763.2555) 110th St. & W. Maple Rd. (402.496.1101) Ft. Crook Rd. & Hwy 370, Bellevue (402.733.8754) 84th St. & Tara Plaza, Papillion (402.593.0983) Lake Manawa Exit, Council Bluffs (712.256.2762)

Enjoy awesome enchiladas, fabulous fajitas, seafood specialties, mouth-watering margaritas, and more at La Mesa! Come see why La Mesa has been voted Omaha’s No. 1 Mexican restaurant 13 years in a row! Sun.-Thu. 11am-10pm, Fri. & Sat. 11am-10:30pm. lamesaomaha.com


Thanks for Voting Us

#1 BREAKFAST 10 YEARS in a Row!

177th & Center • 934-9914 156th & Dodge • 408-1728 120th & Blondo • 991-8222 Drive-Thru Open (Center St. Only) Open Daily 6:30am-2:00pm Serving Breakfast & Lunch All Day!

Lisa’s Radial Cafe 817 N 40th St, Omaha, NE 68131

402.551.2176

Follow us!

Omaha’s Only

Authentic German Restaurant Locally Owned Since 1976

Homemade German Goulash with Spaetzle Homemade bakery items include strudel, donuts & cakes 10 mins from Downtown Omaha 5180 Leavenworth 402.553.6774

gerdasgermanrestaurant.com

THE ORIGINAL

Whiskey Steak Hours: Mon.-Fri. 11am-2pm Cocktail Hour: 3pm-5pm Dinner nightly from 5pm Reservations Accepted Gift Cards Available

Voted Best of Omaha 5 years in a row

2121 South 73rd Street | 402-391-7440 | DroverRestaurant.com MAY/JUNE 2018

// 121 //


7984-2017 UpstreamAd-OmahaMag-5x4.917_FNL.pdf

1

7/14/17

1:43 PM

OJ'S CAFE - $$

402.451.3266 9201 N. 30th St. Next to the Mormon Bridge

Family-owned for 41 years. All homemade food, including our signature enchilada dish, homemade salsa, and some of Omaha's best margaritas! Tue.-Fri. 11am-2pm, Sat. 2pm-9pm, Closed Sun.-Mon. ojscafe.com

MARGARITA'S MEXICAN RESTAURANT - $ 402.393.7515 4915 S. 72nd St.

Margarita's is a business with more than seven years in the food world. We offer authentic Mexican food where you can enjoy a nice moment with your family. margaritasmenu.com

ROMEO'S MEXICAN FOOD AND PIZZA - $

90th and Blondo (402.391.8870) 146th and W. Center Rd. (402.330.4160) 96th and L Sts. (402.331.5656) Galvin and Avery Rds., Bellevue (402.292.2028) 29th and Farnam Sts. (402.346.1110)

Romeo's is your friendly, family Mexican Food & Pizza restaurant! We take real pride in serving our guests generous portions of the freshest, most flavorful dishes made with the finest ingredients available. Zesty seasonings and the freshest ingredients combine to ensure the ultimate in flavor. Our savory taco meat is prepared every morning at each location. Make sure to try our chimichangas, they're the best in town! romeosomaha.com

SEAFOOD CHARLIE’S ON THE LAKE - $$ 402.894.9411 4150 S. 144th St.

Charlie’s is the only fresh-fish-daily seafood restaurant in Omaha. Features 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. Mon.-Thu., 11am-10pm; Fri. 11am-11pm Sat., 4:30pm-11pm. charliesonthelake.net

PRIME STEAK FINE WINE

premium service

SPECIAL DINING CRESCENT MOON ALE HOUSE - $ 402.345.1708 3578 Farnam St.

Founded in 1996, we’ve grown into Beer Corner USA with the additions of The Huber Haus German Beer Hall, Max and Joe’s Belgian Beer Tavern, and Beertopia, Omaha’s Ultimate Beer Store. With more than 60 beers on tap and Omaha’s best Reuben sandwich, we are a midtown beer lover’s destination. Hours: Mon.-Sat., 11am-2am. Kitchen hours: Mon.-Wed., 11am-1pm; Thu.-Sat. 11am-midnight. Closed Sun. beercornerusa.com

KOREA GARDEN AUTHENTIC ASIAN CUISINE AND SUSHI - $$ 402.505.4089 5352 S. 72nd St.

Lunch specials served Monday-Friday 11am-2pm, featuring signature Korean dishes like bulgogi, doenjang jjigae, and grilled mackerel. Menu includes appetizers, traditional specialties, rice, noodles, soup, and beverages. koreangardenomaha.com

GERDA’S GERMAN RESTAURANT & BAKERY - $ 402.553.6774 5180 Leavenworth St.

1 3 6 6 5 C A L I F O R N I A S T R E E T | O M A H A | 4 0 2 .4 45 .43 8 0 MAHOGANYPRIMESTEAKHOUSE.COM

// 122 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

Omaha’s only authentic German restaurant, a little piece of Germany in the metro. Gerda herself makes homemade spaetzle, schnitzels, and rouladen. Fresh-made soups, red cabbage, sauerkraut, and dumplings are a few other treats. Stay for a dessert of Black Forest cake or grab fresh bakery for breakfast on your way out. Check hours at gerdasgermanrestaurant.com


25 YEARS IN THE

MAKING

Specially brewed by Lucky Bucket

www.romeosOMAHA.com

fernandosomaha.com

6 OMAHA AREA LOCATIONS

380 N 114th St 402.330.5707 7555 Pacific St 402.339.8006

DOWNTOWN

MIRACLE HILLS 114th & Dodge

23rd & Cornhusker

AKSARBEN VILLAGE

MILLARD

PLATTSMOUTH

10th & Capitol 67th & Center

180th & Q

BELLEVUE

Hwy 75 & Oak Hill

DJSDUGOUT.COM 11726_DJ'sOmahAMag_APR2018_2018HalfV1.indd 1

Best Greek

3/21/18 3:47 PM

Bringing Italy to Omaha Since 1919

Take a Taste of Italy Home Today!

Family Owned Since 1983 Family Owned Since 1983 Catering ~ Party Room Available CATERING / PARTY ROOM AVAILABLE Homemade, Fresh Food ~ Always HOMEMADE, FRESH FOOD, ALWAYS. 3821 Center St. 402/346-1528

3821 Center St / 402.346.1528 GreekIslandsOmaha.com GreekIslandsOmaha.com

Tues-Thurs: 8:30am-8pm Friday: 8:30am-8:30pm Saturday: 7:30am-8pm Sunday: 7:30am-6pm

402.345.3438 621 Pacific St, Omaha NE orsibakery.com MAY/JUNE 2018

// 123 //


GREEK ISLANDS - $ 402.346.1528 3821 Center St.

Greek cuisine with specials every day at reasonable prices. Well known for our gyro sandwiches and salads. We cater and can accommodate a party for 65 guests. Carry out and delivery available. Mon.-Thu., 11am-9pm; Fri.-Sat., 11am-10pm; Sun., 11am-7pm. greekislandsomaha.com

J.COCO - $$$

402.884.2626 5203 Leavenworth St.

The building that once housed a beloved neighborhood grocery has a new future. Built as a grocery back in 1925, it is now home to J. Coco. Our seasonal menus, rooted in tradition, showcase our natural ingredients. Local, organic, and sustainable when available. We feature craft bar tending, housemade desserts, and pastas. We celebrate the traditional with a modern twist. Lunch (Mon.-Fri. 11am-2pm). Dinner (Mon.-Sat. 5pm-close). jcocoomaha.com

O’CONNOR’S IRISH PUB - $ 402.934.9790 1217 Howard St.

Comfortable, relaxing atmosphere. Great before and after games. We offer pub style food—burgers, Reubens, daily specials, and homemade soups—as well as all the traditional Irish favorite libations: Guinness, Harp, and Irish whiskey. Grill hours: Mon.-Thu., 11am-10pm; Fri.-Sat., 11am-10pm. oconnorsomaha.com

TAJ KABOB AND CURRY - $ 402.933.1445/402.238.4317 654 N. 114th St.

Taj of Omaha shares its love of traditional Indian cuisine with friends and family in the Omaha area. The owners invite you to come enjoy the relaxed atmosphere and new menu. Taj offers both lunch and dinner specials, delivery and catering services, and a free party room. tajofomaha.com

STEAKHOUSES CASCIO'S - $$ 402.345.8313 1620 S. 10th St.

Cascio's is Omaha's No. 1 steakhouse. We have been serving Omaha for 69 years. We feature steaks, chops, seafood, and Italian specialties. We have seven private party rooms, seating for up to 400 people, and plenty of parking. casciossteakhouse.com

THE DROVER RESTAURANT & LOUNGE - $$$ 402.391.7440 2121 S. 73rd St.

9201 N 30th (next to the Mormon Bridge) Omaha, NE

402.451.3266 / 11-2 reopen 4-9 Tues-Fri Winter hours: 11-2 lunch / Tues-Sat 4-8 / CLOSED Sun & Mon

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. Lunch: Mon.–Fri. 11am– 2pm Cocktail Hour: 3-6pm. Dinner: nightly at 5pm. Reservations accepted. droverrestaurant.com

FLEMING'S PRIME STEAKHOUSE - $$$$ 402.393.0811 140 Regency Pkwy.

At Fleming’s, a steak is never just a steak. It’s the culmination of a meticulous process of selection, preparation, and service that ensures it reaches your table at its very best. We obsess over every detail so that you’ll savor every bite. This is why we offer the finest USDA Prime beef, available both wet- and dry-aged and broiled at 1,600 degrees or iron-crusted. You can elevate your selection even more with our indulgent Steak Companions, including truffle-poached lobster, diablo shrimp, and lump crabmeat. Each dish is crafted from scratch by our culinary team and served by our skillful staff. Reservations recommended. flemingssteakhouse.com

// 124 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


OMAHA’S ORIGINAL STEAKHOUSE

West Omaha's only champagne

on tap!

▶ 7 days a week◀ Happy Hour M-F / Brunch SAT/SUN

• Proudly serving visitor & locals for 90 years. • Featured on CNN.com Best Meat Cities in America • Serving hand cut steaks, aged on premise and slow roasted prime rib with pride. 402.731.4774 www.johnnyscafe.com 27th & ‘L’ St., Kennedy Frwy, ‘L’ St. Exit 8 Minutes from Downtown Omaha.

Best Of Omaha 12 Years Running

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

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

11th & Harney

78th & Dodge

LOCALLY OWNED AND OPERATED 16920 Wright Plz, #118 / Omaha, NE 68130 (On the corner of 168th and West Center)

402.884.8966 MAY/JUNE 2018

// 125 //


JOHNNY'S CAFÉ - $$$ 402.731.4774 4702 S. 27th St.

Years of quality dining and hospitality make Johnny's Café a restaurant to remember. We serve only the finest beef the Midwest has to offer. Aged steaks and prime rib are the specialties, with homemade bread and pies to complete a meal. An excellent wine list adds to the enjoyment at one of Omaha's original restaurants. Hours: Mon.-Sat., 11am-2pm and 5pm-9:30pm. johnnyscafe.com

STEAKS • CHOPS • SEAFOOD ITALIAN SPECIALTIES 7 private party rooms Seating up to 400 Lots of parking

MAHOGANY PRIME STEAKHOUSE - $$$$ 402.445.4380 13665 California St. 1620 S. 10th Street

402-345-8313

www.casciossteakhouse.com

Mahogany Prime Steakhouse is a fine dining restaurant near the historic Boys Town with an inviting atmosphere and premium service. Our steaks are crafted from the finest custom-aged U.S. Prime Midwestern Beef, and seafood selections include fresh fish. The bar offers local beers, craft cocktails, and an extensive wine list. mahoganyprimesteakhouse.com

MAHA BAR O B AL

UE EQ

L OC

STEAK & GRAPES - $

red i t

a

v

in

exan

i gl D unch &

nn

ser

t

Steak & Grapes is obsessed with really, really good grapes, creative gourmet comfort food, and a funky, fun atmosphere to share them. We search all over the world to find you great wines. Many wines come from our relationships with smaller undiscovered vineyards, which offer a great value to our guests. Wine is supposed to be fun! We pour BIG and will open any bottle for our guests to try by the glass. When you taste a new varietal at Steak & Grapes, let us know how it changed your concept of what wine is supposed to be. Our gourmet comfort food is made fresh, using eco-friendly and local ingredients. As for the fun, we instigate it, but count on you to see it to fruition (literally through the fruit!) Mon.-Thu. 10am-10pm, Fri.-Sat. 10am-11pm, and Sun. 10am-9pm. (Join us for Saturday and Sunday brunch!) steakandgrapesomaha.com

er

BBQ

402.884.8966 16920 Wright Plaza #118

402.991.9994 4702 S. 108th St. | Omaha, Nebraska @TiredTexanBBQ

twitter.com/tired_texan_bbq

Lunch Specials

With Free Glass of House Wine HAPPY HOUR M-F / SATURDAY & SUNDAY BRUNCH

LOCALLY OWNED AND OPERATED 16920 Wright Plz, #118 / Omaha, NE 68130 O n t h e c o r n e r o f 1 6 8 th a n d W e s t C e n t e r S t r e e t

402.884.8966 // 126 //

MAY/JUNE 2018

654 N. 114TH ST. OMAHA, NE 68154 402.933.1445 / 402.238.4317 TAJOFOMAHA.COM


Try Omaha’s Favorite Reuben! Omaha’s largest selection of craft beers.

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

3578 Farnam St • 402-345-1708 www.beercornerusa.com

EST. 1986

At Fleming’s, a steak is never just a steak. It’s the culmination of a meticulous process of selection, preparation and service that ensures it reaches your table at it’s very best. We obsess over every detail so that you’ll savor every bite.

Now Serving Farm to Table Street Food at our Benson Location

Old Market: 1120 Jackson Street • (402) 341-5827 Benson: 6023 Maple Street

tedandwallys.com 11 Years In A Row

This is why we offer the finest USDA Prime beef, available both wet- and dry-aged and broiled at 1,600 degrees or iron crusted. You can elevate your selection even more with our indulgent Steak Companions, including trufflepoached lobster, diablo shrimp and lump crabmeat. Each dish is crafted from scratch by our culinary team and served by our skillful staff. RESERVATIONS RECOMMENDED

402.393.0811 140 Regency Pkwy / Omaha, NE 68114 FLEMINGSSTEAKHOUSE.COM

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 127 //


// EXPLORE CALNENDAR //

STAY & PLAY IN SARPY COUNTY! Storm Chasers at Werner Park,Papillion

Located just a few minutes south of Omaha, Sarpy County awaits with a wonderful mix of fun things to see and do. Catch a Stormchasers game. Take a swing at one of our premier golf courses. Spend the day at Fontenelle Forest. Whatever you decide, stay and play and plan your getaway at GoSarpy.com.

BELLEVUE • GRETNA • LA VISTA • PAPILLION • SPRINGFIELD • OFFUTT AIR FORCE BASE • OMAHA METRO

Willow Lakes, near Offutt AFB

Fontenelle Forest, Bellevue

Sumtur Amphitheater, Papillion


NEBRASKA CRANES: TAKING FLIGHT

Through May 13 at the Museum of Nebraska Art, 2401 Central Ave., Kearney. This showcase contains various art forms aimed at capturing the magic of the annual migration of the sandhill crane over the heart of Nebraska. 308-865-8559. —visitnebraska.com

LOOKING PAST SKIN: OUR COMMON THREADS

Through May 15 at the Nebraska History Museum, 131 Centennial Mall N., Lincoln. Learn about the way Nebraska has been enriched by the movement of various peoples, from Native American cultures to refugees. This free exhibit provides education on the impact of migration within the state and explains the challenges of living in a foreign country. 402-471-4782. —history.nebraska.gov

OUTDOOR EXHIBITS OPENING DAY May 1 at Stuhr

Museum of the Prairie Pioneer, 3133 W. Highway 34, Grand Island. Go back in time and learn about the pioneers while touring buildings and meeting historical interpreters of the time period. The Railroad Town, Antique Auto and Farm Machinery Building, Pawnee Earth Lodge, log cabin, rural church, and rural school will all open for the season. 308-385-5316. —stuhrmuseum.org

NEBRASKA WINE & JAZZ FESTIVAL

May 4-5 at Buffalo County Fairgrounds Exposition Building, 3807 Ave. N, Kearney. This 11th annual event showcases beverages from a number of Nebraska wineries and micro-breweries, with live jazz music performed by talented musicians. 308-237-3114. —wineandjazzfest.org

FORT KEARNY OUTDOOR EXPO

May 12 at Fort Kearny State Recreation Area, 1020 V Road, Kearney. This family-friendly event caters to those who are interested in Nebraska’s outdoor activities and wildlife. Fishing, camping, and archery are but a few of the offered recreational opportunities. A park entry permit is required. 402-471-6009. —fortkearnyexpo.com

CORTEO BY CIRQUE DU SOLIEL May 17-20 at Pinnacle Bank Arena, 400 Pinnacle Arena Drive, Lincoln. Witness the musical and acrobatic tale of a clown’s imagined funeral that brings together the comic and the tragic in a colorful carnival atmosphere. 402-904-4444. —pinnaclebankarena.com

IMPRACTICAL JOKERS

May 18 at Pinewood Bowl Theater, 3201 S. Coddington Ave., Lincoln. As part of their “Santiago Sent Us” tour, the four stars of the hit show Impractical Jokers will take the stage and entertain with their hilarious sketches and improv. 402-904-4444. —lincoln.org

63RD ANNUAL WILLA CATHER SPRING CONFERENCE

FREE PARK ENTRY/FISHING DAY

ROCK CREEK TRAIL DAYS June 2-3 at Rock Creek Station

May 19 at any state park or recreation area. Get out and enjoy nature during this day, which allows free access to state parks, state recreation areas, or state historical parks across Nebraska. 402-471-0641. —outdoornebraska.org

DUCK ’N’ RUN FAMILY FUN DAY May 19 at Fairbury

Community Building, 601 City Park Road, Fairbury. This Saturday devoted to family activities offers a one-mile duck dash for the kids and a competitive 10K run and a two-mile run/walk for the adults. Additional kid-friendly activities include a “lucky duck” drawing with cash prizes. 402-729-3000. —fairbury.com

20TH ANNUAL TALLGRASS PRAIRIE FIDDLE FESTIVAL

May 26 at Homestead National Monument, 8523 West State Highway 4, Beatrice. Over 30 fiddlers will compete for more than $3,000 in cash prizes at this event. Other events include harmonica and fiddling workshops, and an acoustic band competition. 402-223-3514. —nps.gov

ANNUAL BROWNVILLE SPRING FLEA MARKET May 26-28

in Brownville. Come and see what hundreds of vendors bring to this annual tradition, including recycled and upcycled products, food, and antiques. 402-825-6001. —brownvillehistoricalsociety.org

May 31-June 2 at National Willa Cather Center, 413 N. Webster St., Red Cloud. This year’s conference celebrates the 100th anniversary of My Antonia. The keynote speaker is Nina McConigley. 866-731-7304. —willacather.org

Historical Park, 57426 710th Road, Fairbury. This event features a re-enactment of Wild Bill Hickok’s legendary conflict with David McCanles, mule-pulled wagon rides, and a buffalo stew cookout, among other historical activities. A park entry permit is required. 402-729-5777. —fairburychamber.org

NEBRASKALAND DAYS June 13-23 at Wild West Arena,

2400 N. Buffalo Bill Ave., North Platte. Cowboy up at this festival celebrating Nebraska’s country heritage. The PRCA Buffalo Bill Rodeo features fan favorites such as bull riding, steer roping, and more. The event also includes parades, an antique car show, quilt show, tennis tournaments, and much more. Florida-Georgia Line and Alabama headline the entertainment. 308-532-7939. —nebraskalanddays.com

33RD ANNUAL WAGONS WEST CELEBRATION June 16 at

the Trails & Rails Museum, 710 W. 11th St., Kearney. This festival includes live music, games for children, great food, contests, and educational demonstrations. 308-234-3041. —bchs.us

FATHER'S DAY June 17 at Strategic Air Command and

Aerospace Museum, 28210 W. Park Highway, Ashland. Plan an adventure for your dad this year and treat him to a visit to the Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum. All dads (accompanied by family) enjoy free admission to the museum. There will be a museum tour at 11 a.m., a crawl through of the C-54 “Skymaster” from noon-2 p.m. —sacmuseum.org

USA VOLLEYBALL AND USA WRESTLING

return to Lincoln’s Bob Devaney Sports Center this summer. USA Volleyball is hosting the inaugural FIVB Volleyball Nations League on May 15-17, and the USA Wrestling World Team Trials are June 9. Come cheer on America’s best athletes! Visit lincoln.org for tickets and more information. SPONSORED MAY/JUNE 2018

// 129 //


// EXPLORE CALENDAR //

HOMESTEAD DAYS

June 23-24 at Homestead National Monument, 8523 W. State Highway Four. See how life was lived in the late 1800s through stage performances, demonstrations of traditional crafts and farm machinery, a re-enactment of a Civil War encampment, children’s festival, and more. 402-223-3514. —nps.gov

FULL MOON BONFIRE—WITH STORYTELLER DARREL DRAPER IN THEODORE ROOSEVELT: ROUGH RIDER PRESIDENT June 30 at Wostrel Family’s Union Orchard,

2405 S. Highway 75, Union. Dressed as the 26th President of the United States of America, Darrel Draper delivers an enthusiastic performance pertaining to “Teddy” Roosevelt’s historically important and entertaining run for a third term as president. 402-263-4845. —unionorchard.com

IOWA SPRING SIP, TASTE & STROLL May 4 in Downtown

BOLD . ELEGANT . ALLURING

Professional Jewelry Design, Creation and Repair 402.935.4367 . 3412 South 144 St. Omaha NE 68144

Burlington, 400 N. Front St., Burlington. Spend the evening visiting various downtown wineries and breweries while tasting samples and strolling around the area’s shops. 319-752-6365. —greaterburlington.com

MAIFEST May 5-6 at the Amana Colonies. Guests of

this festival will be treated to entertainment rooted in German tradition, including Maipole dancers and wonderful music. Additionally, the World-on-Wheels food-truck fair will serve international cuisine, and guests can also stroll from store to store tasting samples as part of the Wine, Beer, and Chocolate Walk. 319-622-7622. —festivalsinamana.com

844.271.6909 // 130 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


ORANGE CITY TULIP FESTIVAL May 17-19 in Orange City. This event, which began in 1936, celebrates Dutch heritage and consists of beautiful tulips, dances performed in traditional Dutch clothing, daily parades, old-country foods, and more. 712-707-4510. —octulipfestival.com

41ST ANNUAL HOUBY DAYS

May 18-20 at the Czech Village in Cedar Rapids. Celebrate spring with a carnival, live music, traditional Czech dances and food, and more. 319-398-5009. —gocedarrapids.com

80TH ANNUAL NORTH IOWA BAND FESTIVAL May 24-28

in Mason City. Seventy-six trombones (or more) will parade through the streets of this Iowa town, where Music Man composer Meredith Wilson lived. Along with marching bands, this festival includes a carnival, food, games, and live entertainment. 641-423-5724. —masoncityia.com

LAWRENCE BUSKER FESTIVAL 2018

KANSAS KS FOOD TRUCK FESTIVAL. May 5, 9th and Pennsylvania

streets, Lawrence. This one-day festival features more than 25 food trucks with offerings from across the world, with live entertainment. Proceeds benefit Just Food, the Douglas County Food Bank. 785-856-3040. —ksfoodtruckfest.com

NASCAR CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES TOYOTA TUNDRA 250 & MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES

May 11-12 at Kansas Speedway, 400 Speedway Blvd., Kansas City. On May 11, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series returns for this 250-mile race. May 12 is the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. Martin Truex Jr. will defend his title and seven-time champion Jimmie Johnson will also race that night. 866-460-7223. —kanssspeedway.com

May 25-27, Downtown, 8th to 11th streets, and Vermont to New Hampshire streets, Lawrence. This annual event invites everyone to enjoy a get-weird-weekend. Unusual live performances by artists, both local and global. Don’t miss the Busker Ball at the Lawrence Arts Center. 785-843-2787. —lawrencebuskerfest.com

SUNFLOWER MUSIC FESTIVAL

June 22-30, White Concert Hall, 1700 S.W. College Ave., Topeka. This 10-concert series on the Washburn University campus features orchestra, chamber ensembles, jazz, and student ensembles. 785-670-1396. —sunflowermusicfestival.org

JOHN WAYNE BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION May 25-26

in Winterset. America’s favorite Western star was born in the heart of Iowa, and this two-day festival will celebrate him with a horse parade, 5K run/ walk, a benefit auction, and movies. Red Steagall headlines the live entertainment. 515-462-1044. —johnwaynebirthplace.museum

ANNUAL TIVOLI FEST May 26-May 27 in Elk Horn.

Celebrate all things Danish at this annual spring festival, which includes Danish food, dances, live entertainment, fireworks, and more. 712-764-7001. —danishmuseum.org

2018 WIZARD FESTIVAL & QUIDDITCH MATCHES June 2 at Moonstone Lavender Gardens, 1449 240th Ave., Thurman. This is a celebration of all things Harry Potter. Activities include magic lessons from Professors McGonegall, Snape, and others, as well as an opportunity to learn and play Quidditch. Costume contests, music, and food are also included. 712-628-2113. —moonstonelavender.com

ICE CREAM DAYS June 13-16, Le Mars. Come to the “Ice

Cream Capital of the World,” home of Blue Bunny Ice Cream, for events for the whole family, including a parade, a Grill-n-Chill Rib Rally, live music, and more. 712-546-8821. —lemarsiowa.com

36TH ANNUAL WALNUT ANTIQUE SHOW June 15-17

in Walnut. Spend Father’s Day weekend at Walnut’s nationally celebrated antique show. With over 350 dealers of antiques and collectibles lining the city’s historic streets, this event is more than an antique show—it is a spectacular display of community and tradition. 712-784-3443. —walnutantiqueshow.com

REACH FOR THE SKIES Visit over 40 Aviation War Heroes, Spacecraft, History Displays, Flight Simulators, and a Childrenʼs Learning Center– all at the Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum. Just minutes from Omaha or Lincoln, off I-80, exit 426! Open 9 - 5 Daily.

WURST FESTIVAL June 16 in the Amana Colonies. While

sampling sausages from the area’s best sausage makers and sipping on cold drinks, guests can listen to live music, play games, and watch as dachshunds race one another as part of the second annual Dachshund Derby. 319-622-7622. —festivalsinamana.com

TREKFEST XXXIV June 29-30 at Hall Park, Riverside.

Featuring live music, a demolition derby, activities for kids, and a life-size statue of Captain Kirk, this StarTrek-themed extravaganza, held in the captain’s fictional hometown, is sure to entertain all ages. —trekfest.org

28210 West Park Highway Ashland, NE 68003 • 402.944.3100 www.SACMuseum.org ADMISSION • Adults: $12 • Seniors & Military: $11 Children (Ages 4 – 12): $6 • Free for Children Aged 3 & Under

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 131 //


// EXPLORE CALENDAR //

MISSOURI OFF THE WALL: POP HITS OF THE ’80S WITH THE KANSAS CITY JAZZ ORCHESTRA May 4 at

Interesting people, arts, food, music and events that make Omaha the cultural epicenter of the Midwest. OmahaMagazine.com/subscribe OMAHA MAGAZ INE’S

FamilyGuide

Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, 1601 Broadway Blvd., Kansas City. Travel back to the decade in which Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, and others ruled the charts. 816-994-7200. —tickets.kauffmancenter.org

NINTH ANNUAL SIKESTON JAYCEES CRAWFISH BOIL & MUSIC FESTIVAL May 5 at Sikeston Rodeo

Grounds, 1220 N. Ingram Road, Sikeston. This event offers wonderful Louisiana crawfish and live music in a friendly atmosphere. Activities for the whole family are also scheduled. 573-931-0099. —sikeston.net

GATSBY DAYS

May 10-13 in Excelsior Springs. Break out the beads, fringe, and zoot suits for this homage to the roaring '20s. Events include a fashion stroll, antique car parade, a Gin & Jazz party, vaudeville performances, and more. 816-630-6161. —exspgschamber.com

DISCOVERY DAY May 19 at Lewis and Clark State

Park, 801 Lake Crest Blvd., Rushville. Explore and learn about the wildlife and wildflowers that inhabit Gosling Lake Trail and Lewis and Clark Lake. Guests can also learn about the Corps of Discovery expedition and even look at a model keelboat. 816-579-5564. —mostateparks.com

JIMMY BUFFETT & THE CORAL REEFER BAND May

19 at Sprint Center, 1407 Grand Blvd., Kansas City. Celebrating the 40th anniversary of the release of his album Son of a Son of a Sailor, the iconic singer will take the stage and entertain with his timeless hits. He will also stop in Des Moines on May 22. 816-949-7100. —sprintcenter.com

POISON May 25 at the Sprint Center, 1407 Grand Blvd., Kansas City. The world-famous rock band will take the stage as part of their “Nothin’ But A Good Time 2018” tour with special guest Cheap Trick. 816-949-7100. —sprintcenter.com

FESTA ITALIANA June 1-3 at Zona Rosa, 8640 N. Dixson

Ave., Kansas City. With great Italian food, a beer garden, an Italian car show, and much more, this annual event celebrating Italian and Italian-American culture is sure to entertain the whole family. 816-587-8180. —zonarosa.com

RENDITIONS POLISH POTTERY FESTIVAL

June 9 in Weston. This celebration of Polish culture includes live music, dancing, traditional food, and displays of unique pottery and art. 816-640-2909. —westonmo.com

KESHA & MACKLEMORE

June 26 at the Sprint Center, 1407 Grand Blvd., Kansas City. “The Adventures of Kesha and Macklemore” tour will bring the two superstars together as they put on a spectacular show. 816-949-7100. —sprintcenter.com

Event times and details may change. Check with venue or event organizer to confirm.

// 132 //

MAY/JUNE 2018


OMAHA MAGAZINE | INSTAGRAM

#OMAHAMAGAZINE SHARE YOUR PHOTOS OF OMAHA TO BE FEATURED HERE.

@jfnlife

@juno10682

@eternal_and_unchanging

@boipinoy

@cooper_333

@_jules_photoshots_

@wanderrockphotography

@sarxcasey

@lolasblest

instagram.com/omahamagazine

facebook.com/omahamagazine

twitter.com/omahamagazine

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 133 //


NOT FUNNY // COLUMN BY OTIS TWELVE // PHOTOGRAPH BY BILL SITZMANN

CHOOSE YOUR OWN ADVENTURE

S

OMEBODY ONCE SAID, “LIFE IS AN ADVENTURE.”

I don’t remember who said it exactly, maybe Aristotle. He was a wise man, or at least we take the word of the ancient Greeks that he was. It might have been easier to be wise way back then—fewer people, less competition for the title.

path through the tale? Dr. Vivaldi seemed to show up in every new volume, whether you were in outer space with Moon Quest, or on a cruise with Terror on the Titanic, or dealing with the undead before the undead were cool in Zombie Pen Pal. Nera was ageless and omnipresent, kind of like Helen Mirren. I loved Nera Vivaldi.

But what is adventure? Do you have to be Magellan circumnavigating the globe, or Admiral Byrd headed for the pole, or Geraldo Rivera about to open Al Capone’s vault to have an adventure? I think not. You could dive out of an airplane tethered to a former mall security guard, or bungee jump into a gorge with the taste of Jägermeister fresh on your tongue, or try to sneak a family-size bag of Vic’s popcorn into the multiplex. Or, if you’re like me, you could find adventure in books.

You got to choose where the plot led you. Do you open the airlock when you hear the mysterious knocking from the vacuum on the other side of the bulkhead, or do you fire the rockets and incinerate the multi-tentacled alien threat, or, if you’re wrong, your desperate, oxygen-starved friend outside? Do you get in lifeboat No. 6, or wait a while longer for another way off the ship while you steal the Kaiser’s gold in stateroom 6B? Should you answer the bloodstained postcard that shows up in your school locker or “return to sender” and go to the Snow Ball with Sally forthwith?

Do you remember those books, those little Bantam books by Edward Packer? The books with “Choose Your Own Adventure” headlined above the title? You know, the ones where you dove into the stories written in second person and where the journey was actually determined by your own decisions at critical moments? The stories where your friend, Dr. Nera Vivaldi, always showed up with a clue or advice to help you choose your

Every choice you made prompted a turn in the saga. You might discover a diamond in the lunar dust or perish when your helmet visor cracks. You might be able to warn the captain before the unsinkable liner hits the iceberg, or you might find yourself trapped in steerage far away from Jack, Rose, and the floating door—I still think there was room for two on that bit of flotsam, I just do. Do you decide to make friends with the zombie

For expanded content, return to the Table of Contents page and scan with your layAR app. MAY/JUNE

// 134 //

2018

and then become buddies like Gibson and Glover, or do you suddenly realize that your body is numb and your brain is the featured dish at Undead Golden Corral? The point of the books was that your choices had consequences—just like real, regular, ordinary, day-to-day life. Of course, unlike real life, if you made a bad choice and came to a premature ending, in the books you could go back and change your decision. You could follow the next thread of possibilities to an alternate climax. No matter how many wrong choices you made, you always had the ability to invoke a do-over—unlike real, regular, ordinary, day-to-day life. I loved those books. I shared them with my little ones. I remember them, and in that remembering, I recall the greatest adventure of all, the adventure that begins with three little words. “Let’s have kids.” Nera Vivaldi, where are you now?  Otis Twelve hosts the radio program Early Morning Classics with Otis Twelve on 90.7 KVNO, weekday mornings from 5-9 a.m. Visit kvno.org for more information.


Want to Know what’s Happening IN OMAHA this weekend? Sign up for our weekly newsletters! Visit Omahamagazine.com Click “Get the Mag” Then Click “Weekend E-Blast” To Subscribe

MAY/JUNE 2018

// 135 //


PLAY. EXPLORE. ESCAPE. Nature influences the contours of the bunkers and the selection of your golf club - a morning 9 iron may become an afternoon 3 iron. Every day is different.

Plan your escape today. Call 402-639-4674 or email hospitality@dismalriver.com for membership opportunities. www.dismalriver.com

Situated near Mullen, NE


WELCOME TO OMAHA! INTRO BY DAISY HUTZELL-RODMAN

WE LOVE THIS city, and we know you do, too. Those touring the city for the first time can take advantage of these top-16 attractions, according to the Convention and Visitor’s Bureau. 1. The Bemis Center 2. Kaneko 3. Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge 4. Boys Town 5. The Durham Museum 6. El Museo Latino 7. Film Streams 8. Heartland of America Park 9. Hot Shops Art Center 10. Joslyn Art Museum 11. Lauritzen Gardens 12. Love’s Jazz and Arts Center 13. Mormon Trail Center 14. Old Market 15. Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium 16. Omaha Children’s Museum

It is also festival season. The weather is normally pleasant and the city is abundant with activities. Between May and June, several festivals happen throughout the metro, including: 1. Cinco de Mayo 2. Renaissance Festival of Nebraska 3. Loessfest and Celebrate CB 4. Salute to Summer Festival 5. Taste of Omaha 6. Benson Beer Fest 7. Countryside Village Art Fair 8. Santa Lucia Italian Festival 9. Omaha Summer Arts Festival 10. Zydeco Festival 11. College World Series Details about many of these events, and events at these attractions, can be located in the calendar at the front of this special hotel edition. Of course, all this activity makes a person hungry, and we have you covered there, also. Many advertisers have selected this special eight-page section to let visitors like you know about the great food, attractions, and offers throughout the city. This is Oma ha—great food, great fun. Welcome.


Home of Omaha’s Original

CORNED BEEF

REUBEN

“USING FRESH INGREDIENTS, THE PORTIONS ARE GENEROUS” —Niz Proskocil, Omaha Magazine

“A SOLID JEWISH DELI EXPERIENCE” —The Jewish Press

“SERVING RELIABLE VERSIONS OF THE CLASSICS.” —Sarah Baker Hansen, Omaha World-Herald

8 7 1 8 P A C I F I C S T R E E T, O M A H A , N E 6 8 1 1 4 4 0 2 . 9 0 5 . 2 7 9 2 SWARTZSDELI.COM | FIND US ON:


THANK YOU OMAHA

FOR VO TING US BES T FR I E D C ATFI S H!

Where Every Night is Date Night. Lunch: Mon-Fri 11:00 AM - 1:30 PM Dinner: Mon-Sat 5:00pm - Close 402.964.2212 2317 Maple St. Omaha, NE 68164 D O LC E O M A H A .CO M

RESTAURANT Restaurant & Lounge & LOUNGE Fre sh f i sh, ch ic k e n, a n d h o us e - c u t s te a k s s e r ve d i n a r us t ic a n d f r ie n d l y at mo s ph e re 1006 Cunningham Road, Bellevue 402-292-9963 • catfishlakerestaurant.org

“Fresh fish, chicken, and house cut steaks served in a rustic and friendly atmosphere”


WE DELIVER & HAVE ONLINE ORDERING!

402.597.2526 / 7633 Cass St. Omaha, NE 68114

GoldenPalaceExpress-NE.com

402.991.8355

THANK YOU OMAHA FOR VOTING US BEST BUFFET!

17903 PIERCE PLAZA OMAHA, NE 68130 FOR MOSAZE N.COM

www.gcbne.com

It’s more than a getaway. that It’s the follow you home.

memories

Explore 260 acres at Arbor Day Farm and uncover summer fun. Climb high into the trees, hike miles of trails, or explore a historic mansion. Complete your adventure with a stay at Lied Lodge and a splash in the Olympic-sized indoor pool.

R. NEIBEL

Your vacation awaits; find it at liedlodge.org/calendar.

2700 Sylvan Road | Nebraska City | 800-546-5433 | liedlodge.org


Doughnuts and coffee Since 1937 Fund Raising Available OUR MISSION: To touch and enhance lives through the joy that is Krispy Kreme. OUR VISION: To be the worldwide leader in Sharing Delicious tastes and creating joyful memories.

2420 West Broadway (712) 352-0296 Council Bluffs, IA

707 South 72nd (402) 932-5581 Omaha, NE

2715 South 120th St. (402) 334-9000 Omaha, NE

FAMILY OWNED AND OPERATED, SERVING OMAHA SINCE 1967

402.451.8061 3801 Ames Ave | Omaha Ne 68111

132nd & West Center 402.778.3915

5203 Leavenworth St. Omaha, NE 68106

Lunch Mon-Fri 11-2 Dinner Mon-Sat 5-10

402.884.2626 | jcocoomaha.com

*Promotional. EXPIRES: 12/31/2018. Present this coupon at Front Desk to redeem. Limit one coupon per customer per Power Card®. Coupon value may not be divided into multiple Power Cards. Barcode valid for one use only. Minor policies vary by location – please check www.daveandbusters.com/locations for details. Not valid with any other offers, including Eat & Play Combos, Half Price Games Wednesdays or any Half Price Game promotion. Not valid with Special Events Packages. Coupon must be surrendered at time of redemption and may not be photocopied or duplicated. Non-negotiable. Power Card activation fee is $2. ($3 Times Square). NOT FOR RESALE.


Shop online Visit Our Store visit our e-commerce site 1209 Harney St. in the to view all of our Old Market, and at our Booth licensed product. in the Omaha Baseball Village argentsports.com 402.934.4416 - perspectivejewelry.com


OMAHAâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT DISTRICT o l d m a r k e t . c om

HOURS: Mon-Sat: 10am - 8pm Closed on Sunday

L O C A L LY O W N E D & O P E R AT E D 3 51 N 7 8 th S t , O m a h a N E , 6 81 14

|

foodiesomaha.com

|

402.884.2880


A N E W L O CA L WAY t o T i c ke t Yo u r Eve n t

Bench

1441 N 11th St. Omaha, NE 68102

Intro to woodworking May 12th and June 9th

Table Grace Ministries

Morning Star Lutheran Church 331 S 85th Ave

Sweet Cases Car Show

14905 Q St Buell Stadium

June 9th

NebraskaInvitat ional DanceFest ival Hotel RL 3321 S 72nd St

June 1st - 3rd

Mother’s Day Brunch May 13th seating starts at 9:00 am

VINEYARD AND WINERY

Prairie Crossing Vineyard Winery

Midwest Paranormal History Tours

Mother’s Day Brunch and Live Music by Jessica Errett 11:30 am to 4:00 pm

Starting in May

Urban Abbey

Bodega Victoriana Winery Wedding Barn

1506 Pioneer Trail, Treynor, IA

1026 Jackson St, Omaha, NE 68102

Interfaith Speed Dialogue June 7th

Multiple Locations Around Town

60397 Kidd Rd, Glenwood, IA 51534

Wine Tasting for 2

Arts for All

Creighton BusinessEt hics

Spring Arts Classes Faithful Shepherd Presbyterian 2530 S 165th Ave

Emerging Leaders Trivia Night at Benson Brewery May 17th

A Taste of the Arts Summer Camp Christ the King Lutheran Church 7308 S 42nd St, Bellevue

Business Ethics Luncheon at TD Ameritrade Stadium June 5th

More events coming to Local Stubs, Omaha’s destination to support local events. > Localstubs.com Please join the Omaha Magazine event’s newsletter to discover what is happening in the community. > omahamagazine.com/newsletter

Brought to you by:


Clean, Affordable Natural Gas Comfort in your home. Did you know? • Natural gas appliances are efficient to operate. • Better for the environment 90 percent is delivered directly to your home. • Give you comfort, style and convenience.

We offer many natural gas rebates! Visit our website to see all the appliance rebates offered.

mudomaha.com


Your BEST Summer Body! Target unwanted fat and stubborn cellulite in time for summer! CoolSculpting, SmartLipo and Kybella work to eliminate fat in targeted areas, while Cellfina minimizes the appearance of cellulite for lasting results after just one treatment.

Free $100 Gift Certificate to LovelySkin Retail Store with any treatment over $500* *Limit one per customer. Offer expires June 30, 2018.

Board-certified dermatologist & cosmetic surgeon Dr. Joel Schlessinger has the experience & expertise to help find the best treatment for you.

Stop by or call for a consultation. 402-334-7546 | 2802 Oak View Drive www.LovelySkin.com/Cosmetics

Best of Omaha Winner 2018 Six Different Categories

Skin Specialists and LovelySkin Spa are under the direction of Joel Schlessinger, M.D., Board-Certified Dermatologist and Cosmetic Surgeon. Copyright Š 2018, Skin Specialists, P.C. *Limited time offer. One per person. Valid in the LovelySkin retail store and spa.

May/June 2018 Omaha Magazine  

The Adventure Issue! May/June 2018 Omaha Magazine. Skydiving with family. Postmodern Oregon Trail. The "beermuda triangle". Sandhill Cranes.

May/June 2018 Omaha Magazine  

The Adventure Issue! May/June 2018 Omaha Magazine. Skydiving with family. Postmodern Oregon Trail. The "beermuda triangle". Sandhill Cranes.