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AIRBRUSH MAKEUP ARTIST COURSE For: Ads. TV. Film. Fashion 40% OFF TUITION - SPECIAL $1990 - Train & Build Portfolio. One Week Course Details at: (818)980-2119 (AAN CAN) NOW HIRING The Quik Spot, Center Mall (42nd & Center). Full-time, Must be 21. Apply In Person. WEST CORPORATION Now Hiring Multiple Positions. Go to OmahaJobs. com for more information. ALEGENT HEALTH Now Hiring Multiple Positions. Go to OmahaJobs. com for more information. SPINE & MUSCULOSKELETAL MEDICINE Medical Assistant. Contact Susie Devney at sdevney@ Go to for info. BRIX Retail Associates, Cashiers & Floor Stock. Contact Katie Robson at katie. Go to for more information.


MIDWEST RIGHT OF WAY SERVICES Secretary.Contact John. borgmeyer@midwestrow. com. Go to OmahaJobs. com for more information. SISTERS OF MERCY OF THE AMERICAS Cook. Contact Maureen Holbrook at mholbrook@ Go to for more information. OMAHA COMMUNITY FOUNDATION Director of Research and Evaluation. Contact Robin Spitznable at Go to for more information. AURSTAFF Now Hiring Multiple Positions. Go to OmahaJobs. com for more information.

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Print Deep, Web Daily: The Reader Goes Monthly in 2015 Beginning in January, this publication, Omaha’s longest-running alternative weekly newspaper, will be cutting its carbon footprint almost in half, expanding coverage significantly and increasing circulation, all by converting to a monthly print and daily online publishing schedule. This format change is intended to pair long-form journalism and community engagement to explore how a new brand of civic journalism contributes to positive change in the digital age. We are looking for 2-4 deep community issues to explore next year, partnering with existing organizations. Each issue will also contain the cultural coverage you know and thematic features — exploring, highlighting, focusing and examining each month’s compelling topic. The 2015 themes will be:

JANUARY TIME REFLECTING A look back at 20 years and a look forward to 2015

JULY CHILL HOME LIFE Turning house into home and time into comfort

FEBRUARY SEX LOVE & RELATIONSHIPS Our oldest pursuit and never ending enigma

AUGUST BEST READERS’ CHOICE The best businesses and organizations in our hometown

MARCH LOOK VISUAL & DESIGN Exploring looks, forms and functions

SEPTEMBER ACT VISUAL & PERFORMING ARTS The seasonal guide to Omaha’s deep cultural community

APRIL GREEN SUSTAINABILITY Stewardship in a world of limited resources

OCTOBER LISTEN THE MUSIC ISSUE An annual guide to Omaha’s explosive music scene

MAY WORK CAREERS/EDUCATION From working to live to making a living doing what you love

NOVEMBER MIX CULTURAL DIVERSITY Broadening our horizons by embracing and respecting our differences

JUNE PLAY SUMMER GUIDE Go out and get some fun in the sun or live it up under the stars all summer long

DECEMBER GIVE PHILANTHROPY You give a little but get a lot when you support good causes with time, materials or money

New Revised Site Coming Soon: | THE READER |

DEC. 4 - 10, 2014


heartlandhealing N E W A G E H E A LT H A N D W E L L N E S S B Y M I C H A E L B R AU N S T E I N

Grab Your Nuts this Christmas


VISIONS FROM FIVE MINUTES INTO THE FUTURE • DECEMBER 4, 2014 • The next three years will see an unprecedented and near-total collapse of social media; the next decade will be called the "era of privacy" as the result of a generalized trend toward people scrubbing their presence from the web. It won't be clear what

prompts this, but for a general exhaustion with constantly being on display all the time, and the development of less public ways to share photos, events, etc. only with people you want to share it with, rather than the whole world.

oliday season swells with junk food treats. Sugar cookies, fudge, candy canes, fruitcakes and more. But amid the high-fructose corn syrup, chemical colorings and trans fats, there is a healthy option. It’s nuts. Botanically speaking, true nuts are the fruit of the plant order known as Fagales, which includes most common trees. Most the nuts from that group of plants are correctly called tree nuts, including walnuts, chestnuts, pecans and hazelnuts. When it comes to eating and cooking, though, the term nut describes seeds and kernels also. While technically not nuts, seeds like almonds, cashews, macadamias, Brazil nuts, pistachios and pine nuts go by that misnomer. In fact, a peanut isn’t a nut but a legume and seed, closely related to the pea. Regardless of nomenclature, the reason nuts are so nutritious is because they are the kernels of life. For a plant, the nut is like an egg. From a relatively small acorn nut, the mighty oak springs forth. To nurture a seedling, that little nut must be nutrient-dense. So when it comes to a healthy choice for a holiday treat, grab your nuts. Pistachios Penn State researchers found that as little as three ounces a day of pistachios can lower blood pressure significantly. What a tasty way to take care of hypertension. And pistachios have been found to lower cholesterol, too. Using a similar amount of between 1.5 and 3 ounces of pistachios daily, the test subjects maintained a normal diet otherwise and yet they lowered LDL cholesterol without drugs. The pistachio is native to the Middle East and is now cultivated in California. Legend has it that pistachios mixed with honey can enhance male sexual performance. Mediterranean cuisine often tops a meal with baklava made from those ingredients. With research pointing to improved cardiovascular performance, maybe that legend is fact. Walnuts Walnuts are among the nuts brimming with healthful amounts of omega fatty acids, known to promote healthy heart function. A Spanish study found that the healthful fats in walnuts actually appear to reverse some of the damage that can be done from “bad” fats. Researchers noted that a handful or two of walnuts at the end of a meal may protect the arteries from saturated fat damage. James Duke reports that walnuts are used in Turkish folk medicine to treat glandular disorders and that a possible use is the green walnut which seems to combat the lethargy and effects of hypothyroidism.

Another possible benefit of a handful of walnuts as a snack is that a major study of 25,000 subjects found that those who ate walnuts regularly were not likely to be overweight. Walnuts are rich in serotonin. That is the “feel good” chemical in the brain that is suspected of making us feel full. Cashews Cashews are the most popular nut in America though technically they are not a nut but the seed of the cashew apple tree indigenous to Brazil. The cashew shares some of the heart protecting characteristics of other nuts and seeds. It might be a decided option because it is lower in fat than other nuts. Some sources claim that the cashew also promotes healthy gums. Along with the pistachio, it has the highest protein ratio. Almonds Almonds are indigenous to southwestern Asia so it’s no surprise they are commonly used in ayurvedic medicine to promote healthy brain and nerve function. In modern research, almonds have been found to have certain cancer-fighting constituents in addition to the expected heart benefits. Almonds’ high level of vitamin E is believed to help with skin problems. There is also the suggestion that the oil present in the almond is slightly aphrodisiac, is highly antiinflammatory and can protect the liver and intestines. They are a super-source of potassium, magnesium, manganese and other vital minerals. Sunflower seeds Here is a tip for your heart that you can pick up at any convenience store. The component in nuts and seeds believed to lower bad cholesterol is called phytosterol. Of all the nuts typically consumed as a snack food, sunflower seeds have the highest source. Of course, don’t be a ninny and devour too much of the salted version. Try the unsalted, maybe. Sunflower seeds are also high in magnesium, which can have a relaxing effect on muscles and lower blood pressure. That micronutrient can help prevent muscle cramps. Could that be why they are popular with athletes? Keeping a good balance of magnesium in the body is also found to limit asthma attacks. Hazelnuts Also called a filbert, the hazelnut has a unique flavor and is loaded with tryptophan. Some people believe a few hazelnuts before bedtime lead to a restful sleep because of that. It’s also 65-70% oil and provides a healthy level of oleic acids, helping to maintain healthy cholesterol levels. Filberts are highly anti-inflammatory. Whichever nuts you choose to grab, they can be a boost to your health and a smart alternative to processed foods as a holiday treat. Next up, how to find a good date. Be well. ,

HEARTLAND HEALING is a metaphysically based polemic describing alternatives to convention-

al methods of healing the body, mind and planet. It is provided as information and entertainment, certainly not medical advice. Important to remember and pass on to others: for a weekly dose of Heartland Healing, visit


DEC. 4 - 10, 2014


heartland healing




s you read this, you are sitting (or standing, or unicycling; I don’t judge) approximately 5,761 miles from the nearest ocean. That’s right, I did the math. Yet somehow, Omaha manages to have a thriving sushi scene. We’ve got everyone from the Nigiri newbie to the Sashimi snob, and a wide enough range of sushi shacks to satisfy them all. However, at some point, the sushi has to be about the flavor and not about the hip bar, the Instagram of you and your friends with sake bombers, or what sauce the kitchen can cover your panko crusted mystery meat in to hide the fact that the last fish delivery was nine days ago. Enter an unlikely hero: HuTong Sushigrill. Located in a stripmall in La Vista, this demure eatery manages to take creativity and flavor to exciting heights. The fish is brought in twice a week and never conjures images of tuna cans or grimy tanks. It is the height of fresh flavor, in spite of having to travel a bit to get to its landlocked final destination. At least once a week, 2:00 p.m. finds me sitting at HuTong for happy hour, which continues until 5:00. The extensive halfprice menu is plenty to fill the biggest appetite without breaking the smallest budget. Our sushi chef Alex explains that in Beijing, the locals dine in the restaurants that are tucked away in Hu Tongs, or alleyways. These aren’t the tourist traps decked out in “authentic” décor, but where residents actually eat. Probably to avoid said tourists, but that’s purely speculation on my part. We order the Gyoza appetizers (Gee-oh-zah) which are fried pork dumplings served with a sweet chili sauce, and the HT gift pack. I would tell you that this is HuTong’s take on crab Rangoon, but that explanation seems a disservice. It is a fried wonton wrapper, but instead of Krab, (surimi and Pollack with orange food coloring to mimic actual crab) it’s actual crab meat, and instead of cream cheese, it’s crab meat. It is sump-

tuous and borders on sinful. It’s your birthday, deep fried and ready to eat. Then, my trusty partner in food adventure utters a single word: “Omakase.” Alex grins at us mischievously and nods, before setting to work on our next dish. Omakase translates to “trust in you.” It’s what you say to a sushi chef when you want him to create something for you based on what he feels like making. It’s basically a way to say, “Show me what you got.” The young man in front of us transforms from a wasabi wielding California roller to an absolute artist. He uses everything from spicy tuna to eel, topping this piece with black caviar and that piece with an octopus tentacle. He runs a line of peanuts through the middle of one roll and blazes up his torch, crisping the salmon skin he’s wrapped it in. When we order omakase it is a bittersweet dish. It is always amazing, a gastronomical adventure, but we know we will never taste it again. Omakase means a one of a kind dish, that even if he tried, our chef could never replicate. I’ve been coast to coast, but I love this the most It is with some embarrassment that I admit that a pretty high percentage of my Instagram account and several Facebook albums are hopelessly devoted to pictures of my food. I have dined in Michelin Starred restaurants everywhere from New York to Maui. I’ve eaten sushi that was caught an hour before it was in front of me, sitting beside a pickled ginger flower. That said, I cannot tell you a place where I have enjoyed such a level of innovation. How many ways can you put fish on rice? Leave it to Alex and the team at HuTong. You will never grow bored. You will never be disappointed. You will never lose trust in your chef. ,


Scooter’s Coffee has decided to officially declare it Eggnog Latte season starting December 1. Those who wait all year for Scooter’s signature Pumpkin Pie Smoothie season may not be ready to give up just yet, but coffee fans who love eggnog are probably ecstatic. ■ HOW DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW? The City of La Vista recently announced plans to make some community garden plots available to residents within three different parks. There’s a small fee for the plot’s “rental,” but it’s a great option for La Vista folks who want to have a small garden but don’t have their own land from which to grow. — Tamsen Butler

■ SKATE & FEED If you plan on visiting the ConAgra Foods ice skating rink after its opening Dec. 12, bring along some non-perishable food items to add to the donation boxes there. Food donations go to Foodbank for the Heartland. Monetary donations are accepted too. ■ EAT & GIVE While you’re in the giving mood after ice skating, head to Brownie’s Watering Hole in Papillion for some good bar food. Bring new, unwrapped toys with you when you visit and they’ll be donated to Cheryl’s Stockings, a nonprofit organization that collects toys for underprivileged kids. ■ WELCOME TO EGGNOG LATTE SEASON Locally-owned

HuTong Sushi Grill, 7202 Giles Road, Open MondayThursday 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Sunday Noon-9:30 p.m.

Crumbs is about indulging in food and celebrating its many forms. Send information about area food and drink businesses to



DEC. 4 - 10, 2014



ormer Bellevue West hoops star and Creighton University point guard Josh Dotzler has lived through the saga of Abide, the northeast Omaha ministry his parents started in 1989. Twenty-five years ago Ron and Twany Dotzler stepped out on faith to move their large multi-cultural family – he’s white and she’s black – from the suburbs to the inner city to pursue a community-focused calling. Gangs were first asserting themselves. Shootings and killings became endemic. Through their nonprofit the couple responded to conditions giving rise to crime, poverty and hopelessness. Josh and his family have lost neighbors and friends to gun violence. Others have ended up in prison. Residents are skeptical of do-gooders coming in from outside. As Abide’s front person Ron Dotzler battled credibility issues as a white preacher in a black community. The lightskinned Josh and his rainbow-hued siblings – all 13 of them – had to prove themselves, too. After establishing the ministry as one not just passing through but there to stay, Abide made traction. Josh’s parents have since handed the leadership reins over to him. He admires his parents’ courage to climb out on a limb as a mixed-race couple doing street missionary work while raising 14 kids. His parents feel being an interracial duo has been a help not a hinderance. “I think that’s why I love what we do,” Twany Dotzler says. “We can be a bridge to expose people to those differences, to people who may not think like you do, act like you do, look like you do. If you can just be intentional about getting to know them through relationships you’ll see what we do have in common and what we can do together.” “Most of what happens to try and bring people together is dialogue and while there’s importance to that and it definitely brings awareness,” Ron Dotzler says, “the reality is most of us don’t really change by dialogue. For our work in this community we intentionally get people together. The last two years we’ve had 15,000 volunteers come into this community from outside this community and that means they are now interacting with people. The result of our diversity is our work together, not our conversation.” He says the Bridge church he launched as part of Abide is “very diverse” and openly discusses race. “I don’t know of too many churches that do that. If we’re going to have the deep meaningful relationships God called us to we’ve got to be honest with this stuff.” Twany feels Abide’s accepted because it values people “right where they’re at” and makes the effort “to build relationships, to break down those denominational walls, those racial walls, those economic walls.” Ron says, “We intentionally create multicultural environments. You have to have people that really want to be bridges and not take sides.” Josh admires the path his parents blazed for him to follow and the sacrifices and risks they took staying true to it. “I feel like they’re groundbreakers and have gone through incredible odds. There’s been times when we had no money and my parents didn’t know if they’d be able to provide Christmas presents for us or have groceries for the next week. I can think of multiple times when they hit some of those lows but as children we never felt it. We were broke and poor and people turned their back but my parents never let on to us, ‘I don’t know if we’re going to keep going on,’ even though my dad shares now there were times he felt that way.” Josh’s folks always found a way. They converted a


DEC. 4 - 10, 2014

trashed-out former hospital laundry facility that had originally been a horse-and-buggy fire station at 3335 Fowler St. into the home for their growing family and the headquarters for their organization. Josh and his older siblings pitched in. The couple opened a second community center at 3126 Lake St. that became the worship space for Bridge, which targets at-risk youth. The couple turned a nearby home into a half-way house and “Lighthouse.” Seven years ago Abide went from tackling select problems such as gang activity to taking a holistic, immersive neighborhood approach. Together with church partners it began “adopting” blocks to make its presence felt through celebrations and cleanups. It also started acquiring, rehabbing and occupying abandoned homes to create Lighthouses that bring stability to transient areas. Abide networks with contractors and churches for donated materials and human resources. This new approach is modeled after what the Dotzlers did on their own block to build community. Following their lead, neighbors fixed up their houses. Front porch talks became common. Criminal activity dropped. “We saw the change that was happening,” Josh says. The Omaha Police Department noticed, too. “The police came and said this neighborhood that was once one of the worst is now one of the best and we’d love to partner with you.” Dotzler says Abide is “the eyes and ears of the community.”


cover story

That partnership continues today. Omaha Police Department Capt. Scott Gray, who heads the Northeast Precinct that includes Abide’s operational territory, says, “We meet quarterly with them to discuss any issues that might be occurring in the neighborhood and how we can best solve them. They’ll communicate with us if there are any problems and they’ve actually been pretty instrumental in serving as a contact point for any policecommunity friction that needs to be resolved.” He says Abide’s work to beautify properties and foster fellowship helps residents take more ownership in their community, which dovetails with OPD’s Neighborhood Stakeholder’s strategy. He says Abide’s well-attended events give police welcome opportunities to interact with the community in a positive light. He champions Abide taking rundown, vacant properties and flipping them into occupied homes again. Dotzler says, “One abandoned house with broken windows can be a magnet for negative activity that messes up an entire neighborhood. We see that all over the place. Within a one-mile square radius of us there’s over 100 vacant homes. A Lighthouse can transform an entire community by providing light where there was dark.” He says these homes serve as safe anchors and resources. Lighthouse residents are supports and facilitators as well as conduits to Abide and Bridge. “When we start to work on a Lighthouse we take on that entire neighborhood,” Dotzler says. “We go door to

door to all the houses to connect with the families and invite them to community events. We have barbecues where we grill out front and invite everyone. We intentionally do things so neighbors get to know each other.” He says because many inner city residents are in “survivor mode,” there’s “a relational drought” stemming from fear or mistrust. That’s why he says “building relationships is our biggest mission – it’s crucial.” Lighthouse residents sign covenants pledging to engage neighbors in ongoing fellowship. It’s all part of Abide’s integrated approach to build community, one person, one family, one block at a time. “You can’t just focus on one aspect of a person’s development or a community’s development,” he says. “You can’t just focus on education and expect crime to go down. You can’t just focus on building a house and expect that community to change. You have to focus on taking that dark side of the neighborhood, which was that abandoned house, fixing it up, putting a family or a person into that house that is a part of the change for that community, and providing the programs for people to develop, whether it’s in education or employment. “You have to break down this huge challenge into bite size pieces, which is why we take a neighborhood approach (Better Together). You have to engage people at a grassroots level. You have to be in the neighborhood and community you want to see transformed. You have to have community buy-in, so most of our staff members actually live in the community we work in and many of them live in Lighthouses.” Jennefer Avant, her husband Damone and their son DJ reside in a two-story, three-bedroom Lighthouse on Larimore Avenue. The family reaches out to people on their block to create community. “We do a neighborhood block party and clean-up. We do one-on-one outreach to neighbors,” Jennefer Avant says. “We have a neighbor renovating a home with no running water and we’ve made our outside spout available for him along with our outside electric sockets. We have extended our own time to help if he needs us, we’ve shared our wood for his outside fire pit, and we’ve provided a warm meal. “We have an elderly neighbor that also cares for her ailing son. We help with her yard and we check on her and her son to make sure they’re safe. If they need something beyond what we can do we forward their needs to AbideBridge. When we talk to our neighbors we find out exactly what is needed and then inform Abide. Not everything is about money. Mostly we provide companionship.” Dotzler says, “All our programs are built around providing relationships with people who can paint a picture of what life can be like.” Much of Bridge’s work is directed at youth and young adults. “It’s mentors coming alongside young people, spending time with them, speaking into their life, encouraging them and helping them become who we believe they’re created to be,” he says. Hanging from a wall at the Abide offices is a city map with pins charting every homicide committed in Omaha since 1989. Another map shows the city’s churches. It saddens Dotzler that the two maps could be overlaid and look identical, suggesting the mere presence of churches doesn’t curb violence. For churches to make a difference, he says, they must minister in the streets. Therefore, Bridge aims to be “about change,” he says. “I think the powerful thing about Bridge is it’s a church in the community for the community. We go and engage people on their terms, in their turf. We keep it real. We say, ‘We’re not anybody better than you but we’d love to help you in continued on page 8y




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DEC. 4 - 10, 2014


y continued from page 6 any way we can.’” That approach has found a receptive audience. It helps, he says, that Bridge leaders are from the community and thus “have the relational equity to engage” with everyone from elders to Young Gs. Avant says. “No matter how small, we have to do our part to keep each other safe, especially our kids.” She says Abide has become a well known and accepted player in the inner city “because of the investment of volunteers and staff that have made a difference and gained the trust of our neighborhood.” She adds, “Young and old alike always ask when the next event is. Yes, prizes are given away, but it is more than that. People receive prayer, hugs, acknowledgement, someone to listen and connect. If Abide or the churches they partner with were not around, our neighborhood would be in much worse condition.” Omaha Police Capt. Scott Gray says, “We’ve seen a reduction in incidents, especially with violent crime in the areas where they operate. They do a lot of outreach in the community. They get that sense of community reinstilled in the neighborhood.” Abide’s increased imprint has seen it go from a single adopted block to 100 and from one to 20 Lighthouses. Seven new Lighthouses are being readied for occupancy. Abide block parties have gone from a couple hundred attendees to 2,000-plus, outgrowing the Abide site and moving to nearby Skinner Magnet Center at 4304 No. 33rd St. Similarly, Bridge has outgrown the Lake St. building and now holds services at North High School, where 500 followers gather on Sundays. Thousands of volunteers annually work on Abide projects and programs, from painting houses to mowing lawns to mentoring kids. Skinner Magnet principal Tarina Cox says the block parties Abide throws at her school are inspiring. “It is amazing to see the large number of kids, parents, volunteers, Abide Staff, community members, Skinner staff and members of Omaha Police Department come together to provide a fun and safe environment for our community.” Skinner also partners with Abide on hosting an annual Thanksgiving dinner that draws hundreds as well as neighborhood festivals, Easter egg hunts, staff appreciation days and backpack giveaways. Dotzler says he and his parents believe that overturning the foundational poverty that keeps people in despair or isolation requires addressing not only education, jobs and housing but “love, safety, care, nurture,” adding “people hunger for someone who actually cares

and wants to see your needs met and see you become successful. At the heart of it is a hunger for spirituality, for purpose in life. “In our holistic way of thinking you need housing, which provides safety and stability and which turns a negative spot in the community to a bright spot. You



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cover story

need family support programs which provide opportunities for individuals to grow and develop. You need community building activities and events to create a sense of camaraderie and neighborliness. We say we want to put the neighbor back in the hood. It’s a part of this bigger strategy in neighborhoods we’re working in on an ongoing basis and so it’s a building block.” Abide’s growth has coincided with its more organic approach. “We have partners come in and take on these specific neighborhoods, again not just doing a program but building relationships in that community that carry on past just a house getting refurbished. It’s more than providing a service, we’re creating a whole new culture and where you’re creating a new culture you better make sure you’re addressing the different cultural realities there. “By being in and living in the neighborhoods we’ve been the ones who have been changed because our eyes have been opened, our perspective has been broadened. The longer I’m in it the more I realize what I don’t know and the more we realize we need to continue to learn from the community and the people were working with. We’re always figuring it out and evolving.” Above all, he says, “we’re not here to save the day – we don’t want to be the organization that comes in and has the answer for everything but we’re here to provide resources and relationships so that people’s lives can be enhanced.”

Dotzler loves his work but didn’t expect to be doing this. The 2009 Creighton grad saw himself playing ball overseas and going into business. There was no succession plan for him to take over Abide but seeing his parents grow it made an impression on him. “I got to see a picture of what it looked like to live with purpose, passion and something that was bigger than yourself,” he says. Besides, he adds, “I think everybody wants to make a difference.” But he didn’t think he was up for the job and so he resisted it even as his parents nudged him to be more involved. “I’ve never seen people step back with more humility,” he says of his parents. “I wouldn’t even be here if it wasn’t for them pushing me here. It was them saying, ‘You have it in you, we believe in you, we want you here.’ I never thought I was equipped or the person to do this and didn’t want to be but through encouragement from my dad and the rest of the family, my leadership capabilities just kind of emerged. My parents got more confident in me and I got more confident in my role.” Finally, with his older siblings variously away or enmeshed in their own careers, he committed to Abide and for his own family – he and his wife have three kids – to live in a Lighthouse. “My wife gave me a three month ultimatum. She said. ‘Let’s move here for three months and then move somewhere else.’ We both said let’s give it a try and see what happens, and we’re still trying it out five years later. But we really feel like this is where we’re supposed to be. “It’s been nothing but a blessing.” He says a good day on the job can mean many things. “It can look so different, whether I’m coaching the 1st and 2nd grade basketball team and a kid attitude or behavior-wise made a step or trying to make this Lighthouse program go to another level so we can impact more neighborhoods.” Making progress in any area satisfies him. “Progress in individuals, progress in our own process as an organization, always moving forward. When we get better everybody gets better. I love that process of trying to get better every single day – to make a community and individuals better.” He says it’s not about plaudits, though his parents have received their share and have many admirers. “In these neighborhoods people may or may not know the name Abide but they would know we’re the group that does the block parties or goes door to door passing stuff out or they would know Bridge church. They definitely would know our family.” Jennefer Avant makes no bones about the impact the Dotzlers make. “Ron and Twany Dotzler are amazing people. Caring, down to earth. God is definitely at work in their lives. Where they started to where they are now is such an awesome testimony to their faith and in turn strengthens mine. So many lives touched, including mine personally.” Josh Dotzler just wants to take Abide where community needs lead it. He’d like to one day scale up to 700 Lighthouses. Whether that happens or not, he wants to make Abide a part of the solution. “We feel very confident in terms of the pieces we have to see the neighborhoods transformed. Everything that’s happened over this past 25 years has kind of helped prepare us for this.” , Visit Read more of Leo Adam Biga’s work at

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DEC. 4 - 10, 2014








rt often expresses culturally-specific stories but until the Omaha-based African Culture Connection surfaced in 2006 West African tales were rarely if ever explored here. Led by Benin, West Africa native and veteran dancerchoreographer Charles Ahovissi, ACC’s dedicated to presenting the vibrant rhythms, movements, colors and costumes of African tribal tradition and culture. In upcoming appearances he and his troupe will enact lively interpretations of African proverbs through song, music and dance. On Friday they perform during the Ethnic Holiday Festival at the Durham Museum. On Saturday they offer dance instruction at the South Omaha Library. On Monday they present the story of the Iroko tree in the Omaha Community Playhouse’s Alternative Programming Series. Alternative well fits ACC, whose programming nearly stands it alone among area arts groups. As a Nebraska Arts Council (NAC) touring artist, Ahovissi brings his cultural showcase to schools and youth serving organizations, where African studies are negligible. “It is a very unique program,” he says. “You don’t see it in this state. You cannot get what we teach kids in a library. In schools kids barely get the cultural activities we provide them. That’s why it’s very unique, very special and engaging.” Omaha Girls Inc. executive director Roberta Wilhelm says, “Charles has helped our girls learn about Africa in ways they simply never would in a classroom or from a textbook. The girls connect to the lessons in a very visceral


Ahovissi appreciates the positive feedback he gets from teachers, administrators and program directors about the immersion experience he provides. He says the glowing evaluations “confirm that after we work with kids they learn how to respect and how to behave and some kids who were shy become engaged in the classroom,” adding, “All the teachers tell us thank you for making a big impact on kids’ lives.” He says the rituals and lessons taught have deep, universal meaning. “We say it takes a whole village to raise a child. From generation to generation we pass on the culture. In Africa everything kind of ties together.” In a real sense he’s carrying on traditions handed down to him in Benin, where dance and drumming were part of his growing up. “My mom took me from village to village to the ceremonies. I just picked it up from that.” In his early teens he joined a local arts group. “They taught me how to be more professional,” he says. He then won a competition that enabled him to perform with the National Ballet of Benin beginning in 1984 at age 16. “That allowed me the opportunity to travel and perform with that company. I was very honored to be selected.” Later he joined the Super Anges dance troupe. He was touring the U.S. with that company when he met his wife. The former Karen McCormick, an Omaha native, did a Peace Corps stint in Africa, including service in


way. He and his team help the girls ‘feel’ Africa when they drum and dance. They prepare and taste African food, create printed fabric to wear while they dance and hear African stories. They also learn lessons about creativity, collaborative work, self-expression, delayed gratification, responsibility and pride of accomplishment.” At the free 7:30 p.m. Playhouse show the featured Iroko dance imparts a lesson through a cautionary parable about the dangers of putting self before community and not respecting nature. In West Africa the Iroko tree is held sacred for supposed mystical powers and medicinal properties. In the dance a young woman ignores a prohibition to cut the tree and goes mad as a result. After being saved by the village’s purification ceremony she vows never to violate the Iroko again. Ahovissi says, “there’s a reason why we do any traditional dance and drumming. Every life aspect in Africa has a specific dance, rhythm, music, so at the same time I’m teaching a dance I’m also teaching the culture, the tradition, the story behind that dance and music. For example, when it comes to farming in Africa there is preparation and celebration. How we pick the fruit, why we pick that fruit is dance movement that has a story. “Another example is the special music and dances we do for the initiation of youth in a village. When I’m teaching kids here the initiation dance I’m also teaching this story, this culture, this way we do things.”


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Between the beating drums and the whirling dancers the energy rises to a fever pitch at ACC performances. The nonprofit’s on quite a roll, too. In late 2012 it became one of only a dozen organizations in the U.S. that year and the first ever in Neb. to receive the National Arts & Humanities Youth Arts Award. It’s a major honor for any group but particularly one as new as ACC. Ahovissi, ACC’s ebullient founder, president and artistic director, accepted the award from First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House. Additionally, ACC received a $10,000 grant to support and expand its programming. This came on top of winning the Nebraska Governor’s Arts Heritage Award. Even Ahovissi finds it hard to believe his organization did what none of the state’s larger, more established arts programs managed doing. “I just don’t know how we got here,” he says. “It was surprising.” NAC director of programs Marty Skomal says, “No other arts group in Neb. has succeeded in demonstrating ACC’s masterful combination of high artistic quality with genuine and significant community engagement. Each time I see the troupe perform, I am impressed by the level of dedication, attention to detail and commitment. It becomes contagious. Kids can sense this authenticity, and respond to it instantly. ACC is able to do what its name implies – make a connection.”



Ahovissi’s native country, Benin. In Omaha she volunteered with the La Belle Afrique presenting group that brought Ahovissi’s dance company to Omaha in 1999. The two met, fell in love and married. They have two children together. Ahovissi moved to Omaha in 2000 and became an NAC touring artist in 2001. He conducts NAC residencies around the state. “I know all the cities and towns in Neb. I just pack my car with my costume and drum and travel one week, two weeks at a time. I cannot count how many places I’ve been to. I’m grateful for that because I do love teaching, performing and sharing my culture.” He trains teaching and performing artists to join him at some venues. His multicultural troupe present African music and dance and the stories behind these traditions. He feels American children need to expand their knowledge of diverse cultures in this ever shrinking world. “It is so important for them to learn about other cultures. They have to open their minds, they have to allow themselves to appreciate other cultures, they have to accept their friends who are not like them. Since Omaha is becoming more diverse we need to be more diverse, too. We all need to be together and move forward.” He says as Omaha’s welcomes migrant populations from around the world “there is a need for global understanding in our community. It’s not just African cul-

n This year, BLUEBARN Theatre is continuing its annual holiday tradition, The Giving Tree, supporting Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging (or ENOA). This mission of ENOA is to help older Nebraskans live independently and remain in their own homes for as long as possible. Over the years, BLUEBARN has helped raise thousands for the organization during the run of their Christmas Show (which I’ve had the pleasure of participating in this year alongside Ben Beck and Theresa Sindelar). “I have always had a strong connection to my elders,” BLUEBARN Artistic Director Susan ClementToberer said. “Memories of my grandparents still run deeply in and influence my everyday interactions.” Seven years ago, Clement-Tobere had a conversation with a friend whose business was raising money for children over the holidays. “Don’t get me wrong, I love kids,” she said. “But what about the elderly? Who is their champion?” Clement-Toberer then discovered ENOA and the Giving Tree was born. During the run of Every Christmas Story Ever Told (and Then Some!), a bright silver tree sits in the lobby of the theatre. Hung upon it are gold and silver ornaments, each with the name of an elder in the community. Patrons can purchase an ornament to take home for themselves, and the money raised is used to buy gift cards for those elders. Most notably, Clement-Toberer and the BLUEBARN receive several thank you letters from the elderly recipients. For many, it was the only gift they received in the holiday season. “Too many elders are sitting in their homes alone and forgotten,” Clement-Toberer said. “To grow old is something to be revered. To raise money for each individual every holiday is an honor and an important way that we remind them that they are valid, worthy, wise and, most importantly, remembered.” For more information on the BLUEBARN’s Giving Tree, visit For more information on the Eastern Nebraska Office on Again and its services, visit n For fans of the classic holiday film A Christmas Story, the recently released musical adaptation is opening at The Rose this week Dec. 5 and running through Dec. 28. While blending the movie’s iconic moments with new music and dance numbers, Artistic Director Matt Gutschick said, “This show reminds us that we can choose to love unconditionally regardless of how imperfect we have been in sharing love in the past.” More information on the show can be found at — William Grennan Cold Cream looks at theater in the metro area. Email information to

ture – we need to be learning about all these different cultures. You teach me about your culture, I teach you about mine, and we share it. That’s how we become open-minded and free and live in a peaceful way.” Ahovissi’s still deeply tied to Benin, so far spared from the raging Ebola epidemic. He sends money back every month to his large family living there. “I’m they’re hope,” he says. They’re his roots and inspiration. , Visit Read more of Leo Adam Biga’s work at






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DEC. 4 - 10, 2014



T H E R E A D E R ’ S E N T E RTA I N M E N T P I C K S D E C . 4 - 10, 2 014



A CHRISTMAS STORY, THE MUSICAL The Rose Theater, 2001 Farnam St. Fri: 7 p.m. Sat: 2 p.m. (Sat, Dec.27: 7 p.m.) Sun: 2 p.m. Tickets: $20-$25

Delightful songs decorate this stage version of the fun-filled 1983 seasonal favorite movie about Ralphie, his yearning for a weapon which could shoot his eye out and his Old Man’s triumphant prize of a sensational lamp. Legendary radio storyteller and Playboy writer Jean Shepherd based this on his own childhood whose narrative backgrounds the story, this time interpreted by local radio personality Dave Wingert. The music and lyrics are by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, creators of songs for a theatre take on Roald Dahl’s James and the Giant Peach as well as for off-Broadway’s Dogfight (2012) and others for NBC-TV’s Smash. Script-writer Joseph Robinette also came up with a musical based on E.B. White’s Charlotte’s Web. Jerry Brabec leads the 10-member orchestra. “Cute, corny, wholesome and sentimental… but it also packs ample heart,” wrote David Rooney in The Hollywood Reporter. Holy Moley! Tis the season to be jolly. — Gordon Spencer


THURSDAY4 Though Jan. 9


Tea Smith, 345 N. 78th St. 301-703-1962, In the work of New York photographer Martin Posner, the city’s fascinating dramas unfold in brilliantly composed images celebrating intimate moments and grand visions alike. A former fashion photographer associated with renowned Italian design firm Bruno Magli, Posner had a remarkable ability to transform the mundane scenes of everyday life — a snowy street jammed with traffic, a baker’s display case — into images of astonishing beauty. Likewise, when he chose to cast his eye on the traditionally picturesque, he did so with a unique perspective, framing his subject in a way that was entirely unexpected and new. Passionate about photography from an early age, Posner initially learned many of his techniques from his uncle, the noted portrait and fine-art photographer Arthur Greenstein. He honed his craft in the 1960s and ’70s, capturing turbulent demonstrations in city streets and ultimately receiving the prestigious Nikon award for Portrait Photography in 1983. Posner’s works are characterized by a lush, cinematic qual-

ity and a striking sense of depth. His pictures often seem to contain their own atmospheres, with each image emitting a singular blend of light, color, and temperature. After a long battle with cancer, Martin Posner passed away April 11, 2014. He is survived by his wife, Debbie and five children. His daughter and son in law, Amy and Tom Yaroch reside in Omaha. Given their love of photography and special appreciation of Martin’s photographs, they want to continue to make his photographs available to his admirers. A display of his photography featuring pieces from “Reflections of New York,” “The Red Doors” and “Night Lights” are on display at the Tea Smith through the first week of January 2015. The pieces displayed are the last signed pieces available. Additional unsigned prints of some of his photographs are available through the website:

SATURDAY6 Saturday-Sunday, Dec. 6-7


Aksarben Village, 67th & Center 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (402) 345-5401, Holiday shoppers will find out-of-the-ordinary gifts from jewelry to home decor items created by local artisans, gourmet goodies, educational toys and many surprises at the annual Physicians Mutual and WOWT Holiday Market. Returning to Aksarben Village Saturday and

Sunday, the classic German-style open-air market will keep visitors comfortable under a heated, 14,000-squarefoot tent located on Mercy Road at 67th Street. “This fun, family-friendly market is like a gift to the community,” Physicians Mutual Senior Vice President Bob Gunia said. “We’re pleased to play a part in bringing such a unique experience to Omaha-area families.” More than 45 participating craft, food and other vendors offer locally made or handcrafted goods, ensuring that the Holiday Market not only supports the local economy, but provides a truly one-of-a-kind shopping experience for the Omaha area. Visitors who frequent the Omaha Farmers Market in the Old Market or Aksarben Village may be familiar with some of the local Holiday Market vendors offering jellies, jams, salsa, cheeses, tamales, wine, coffee, roasted almonds and a variety of sweet desserts. Shoppers will also find a wide spectrum of gift items for all ages and fitting all budgets within the Market tent, like specialty toys, hand-crafted candles and soaps, collars and toys for the four-legged family members, even clothing and accessories for both children and adults. Of course, Santa will be stopping by with Mrs. Claus and Skippy the Elf to greet kids (and grown-up kids) Sunday from 2 to 4 p.m. Ample free parking will be available in and around Aksarben Village during the Holiday Market hours. “We enjoy being a presenting sponsor of the Holiday Market,” WOWT President & General Manager Vic Richards said. “It’s a great place to get into the spirit of holiday shopping and shoppers will find some wonderful gifts you won’t see anywhere else.” The Physicians Mutual and WOWT Holiday Market is also sponsored by the Omaha Farmer’s Market and Aksarben Village.




DEC. 4 - 10, 2014



eventcalendar For more information about these events and more, go online to:

Upload your events online at Questions: ONGOINGCULTURE The Highgrove Florilegium - All Day | Included with Garden Admission Lauritzen Gardens Plants from the garden of Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall. The exhibit is published in a two volume fine art facsimile of original watercolors by many of the leading botanical artists from around the world. Depicting the plant life growing at in the sustainable, organic gardens at Highgrove House in Glouchestershire, a selection of forty pieces from the publication will be on display through December 31. Digital Hands - All Day | Free Creighton University Lied Art Gallery The Creighton University Lied Art Gallery will host Ceramic 3D Printing artists John Balistreri and Greg Pugh. Through Dec. 7. First Drafts: What They Are and What they Aren’t - 5:30 pm | Free The Kaneko What does a poet’s workday have in common with a costume designer’s? And how is their work similar to an entrepreneur’s? How about a chef’s, or a cancer doctor’s? These questions, and more, will be answered by experts from a wide range of disciplines as they come together for a new series. Every Christmas Story Ever Told (And Then Some!) - 7:30 pm | $25-$30 The Blue Barn Theatre They’re Back! Theresa Sindelar, Ben Beck, and Bill Grennan reprise their hilarious characters in this fast, fond, and furious look at the holiday traditions we all remember, and a few we’d like to forget! From Tiny Tim to the Grinch, from Frosty to It’s a Wonderful Life, nothing is spared in this rollicking tour de farce! Radio City Christmas Spectacular - 7:30 pm | $35 Orpheum Theater-Omaha Don’t miss the Omaha debut of the Radio City Christmas Spectacular Starring the Rockettes. They dazzle in the newly enhanced production of this cherished family show, more spectacular than ever before. A Christmas Story The Rose Performing Arts Center Holiday Musical Join Ralphie Parker on his quest for the Holy Grail of Christmas gifts a Red Ryder air rifle. This musical adaptation of the beloved movie brings all the classic laughs of Flick getting his tongue stock to a flagpole, Dad receiving his special award, a disastrous visit to Santa, and many more to life onstage. Bring your family together this winter to experience the universal triumphs of childhood as seen through the eyes of a very special 9-year-old. Nutcracker Delights - 7:00 pm | $12-$22 Bellevue Little Theater/KROC Center Ever After Productions Kicks Off the Holiday Season Production of ‘Nutcracker Delights’ Ever After Productions, Inc. will open its eighth annual season with a community production of ‘Nutcracker Delights’ at the Bellevue Little Theatre and the Omaha Kroc Center. This enchanting and charming ballet story with original script by local artist Julian Adair is set to the traditional glorious score by Tchaikovsky and told through a wonderful cast of dancers and actors of all ages, uniting to represent more than 10 studios across the Omaha Metro Area. The production was nominated for two Theatre Arts Guild Awards in 2009. Steampunk Christmas - 7:30 pm | $30 Apollon Leather corsets and top hats. Wooden robots and spring-loaded garter belts. Zephyrs and rocket packs. Nothing says Christmas like magical Victorian-era machinery and twisted debauchery. In our ongoing effort to produce something other than A Christmas Carol during the holidays, our artists are embracing Steampunk’s alternate history to imagine what Christmas would look like in a steam-powered world full of anachronistic technologies and retro-futuristic inventions. This themed performance, food and art event opens Dec. 5. A Christmas Carol - 7:30 pm | $18-$40 See Website Omaha Community Playhouse It just isn’t Christmas without A Christmas Carol. Experience Omaha’s favorite holiday tradition as Ebenezer Scrooge takes us on a life-changing journey filled with beautiful costumes, exquisite music, perfectly crafted sets and special effects second to none. Perfect for the whole family.


Legend Comics and Coffee A monthly gathering for writers and artists, and those who support the creative talent in Omaha. No script or expectations, just a supportive environment for the talented creators in Omaha! Open to people of all skill levels and creative interests! Live Jazz Pianist Mark Misfeldt - 7:30 pm | Free The Omaha Lounge Reggae Night - 8:00 pm | Free The Hive Lounge Rhythm Collective - 8:00 pm | The Hive Lounge Pert Near Sandstone - 8:00 pm | $10 ADV/$13DOS The Slowdown A night of alternative and old-timey bluegrass comes to downtown Omaha. Pert Near Sandstone is a bluegrass/newgrass band from Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota, and part of the Minnesota Roots Music scene that includes contemporaries Charlie Parr, Trampled By Turtles, and 4onthefloor. Pert Near Sandstone has recorded six full length albums since 2004, and have toured the United States extensively. Live Bandaoke with Sh*thook - 9:00 pm | Free Duffy’s Tavern Lincoln Music starts around 10 pm. Songwriter Death Battle - 9:00 pm | $7 The Waiting Room Lounge ‘One guitar, one microphone, one song at a time. That’s my idea. It’s not a battle, Everyone will be safe.’ -John Klemmensen (Landing on the Moon, John Klemmensen and the Party)


St. John’s Two-day annual fundraising event for the Bennington Public Library. December 5th (Friday) from 2pm - 8pm. December 6th (Saturday) from 10am - 3pm. Activities include: - Santa (6pm-8pm, Dec 5th and 10am-2pm Dec 6th) Lighted Tree Walk - Raffle / Silent Auction - Story time with Santa’s Friends - Home Goods Bake Sale - Holiday Entertainment - Hot Meals First Friday - 6:00 pm | Free Old Market Artists Gallery The gallery holds ‘First Friday’ receptions, which are open to the public, the first Friday of each month, from 6 to 9pm. The First Friday receptions give you the opportunity to meet the artists and talk with them about their work. It’s a fun atmosphere...please join us for wine, delicious appetizers and great art! Holiday Group Art Show - 6:00 pm | Free The Frame Service Join us at The Frame Service in Midtown for a Holiday Group Art Show on Friday, December 5, from 6 to 9 pm. We are featuring local artists: Kenneth Adkins, Stephan Azevedo, Corey Broman, J.J. Carroll, Kelly Connor, Matthew Clouse, Adam Findley, Erin Foley, Pat Oakes, Anne Peterson, Meghan Stevens and Michaela Williams. Holiday cheer will be served. Plack Blague presents House of S & M with SUPERSTAR - 7:00 pm | $5 Sweatshop Gallery Sweatshop Gallery presents: House of S & M, with new works by RAWS & LOREN & live performances by PLACK BLAGUE & SUPERSTAR Friday, December 5th Art 7-10 Music at 10 DJ TBA art show is free $5 at door for music all ages 2727 N 62nd St CSM Christmas Concert - 7:30 pm | $5-$10 College of St. Mary, Our Lady of Mercy Chapel College of St. Mary Concert Series presents Christmas Concert, conducted by Dr. Marty Wheeler Burnett. Doors open 30 minutes prior to performance. Opeth - 7:30 pm | $27-$30 Sokol Auditorium Opeth has spent over two decades steadily amassing a body of work that is at once possessed of a fervent and unrelenting devotion to aesthetic progression (and perfection) while simultaneously scaling the summits of power, mysticism and might aspired to by the groups hard rock forefathers in Sabbath, Purple and Zeppelin. Live Jazz Pianist Kevin Lloyd - 7:30 pm | Free The Omaha Lounge UNL Student Dance Project - 7:30 pm | $3-$5 Mabel Lee Hall University of Nebraska-Lincoln Lincoln, NE 68588 The University of Nebraska Lincoln Glenn Korff School of Music in the Hixson-Lied College of Fine and Performing Arts presents The 10th Annual Student Dance Project Directed by Susan Levine Ourada.

Christmas at the Cathedral - 8:00 pm | $18-$30 Saint Cecilia Cathedral Join us for the 19th Annual Christmas at the Cathedral Omaha Symphonic Chorus with the Omaha Symphony Chamber Orchestra Friday, Dec.5 and Sunday, Dec. 7. Otherwise - 8:00 pm | $13 ADV/$15 DOS The Waiting Room Lounge Peace comes through struggle. It’s a reward that’s earned rather than simply given. It’s the product of tireless work and an unbreakable spirit against all odds and opposition. OTHERWISE are no strangers to that struggle, rising up to become rock ‘n’ roll contenders in the face of a tumultuous musical climate and a series of personal hardships. Live Music - 9:00 pm | Free Horseshoe Council Bluffs Casino 3D In Your Face - 9:00 pm | $5 The 21st Saloon Stay warm as the winter weather sets in with 3D In Your Face and their soon to be legendary residency at The 21st Saloon. Wild Wild Wild. A night packed to the rafters with guitars, hair, and of course eye liner. Don’t miss the 80’s in action every Friday night. The Lupines and Calm Fur - 9:00 pm | $5 Barley Street Tavern Benson First Friday Krampus Showcase: 21+ “Interrogated” - 10:00 pm | Free


SODO Artisan’s Market - 11:00 am | Free Wallflower Join South Downtown businesses: Walllfower, Omaha Code School, and Echo Coffee Shop as we deck the halls with local goods! South Downtown Omaha’s PREMIER holiday shopping event featuring collections by local artisans. Hot Shops Open House - 12:00 pm | Free Hot Shops Art Center The Hot Shops Art Center features fun and informative art demonstrations and live music, with most every resident opening their studios to the public. All of the galleries will host events, while the building walls are filled with art in a very wide variety of mediums. It’s absolutely the best time of the year to see all that the Hot Shops has to offer. North O Holiday - 12:00 pm | Love’s Jazz & Art Center Welcome to a holiday celebration! The whole city is a village! Come down to celebrate it with us in partnership with Christmas in the Villtage. The North O HOliday Arts and Cultural Expo is going strong. Chili Cookoff - 1:00 pm | $0-$5 O’Leaver’s Pub Annual chilli cookoff! $5 cost to eat some delicious chili. Free to just hang. Prizes for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place. Live Jazz and Blues Guitarist George Walker - 7:30 pm | Free The Omaha Lounge Karrin Allyson: Home for the Holidays 7:30 pm | $30 University of Nebraska at Omaha Performing Arts Center On December 6 Omaha native and UNO alumna, Karrin Allyson, will be performing songs from her award winning album, ‘Yuletide Hideaway’ at the Strauss Performing Arts Center on the University of Nebraska at Omaha campus. The convert begins at 7:30 p.m. and tickets are $30. Accompanying Allyson will be the UNO Jazz Ensemble and the Heartland Philharmonic Orchestra. The New York Times calls the four-time Grammy nominee ‘a complete artist one of the jazz world’s finest.’ Diamonds Are Forever - 8:00 pm | The Hive Lounge Saturday Night Dance Party - 9:00 pm | The Hive Lounge Check out our Saturday Night Dance Party featuring DJ Sam E.C. No cover until 10pm. Join in the Fun and BEE HAPPY! Friday, Maybe Saturday - 9:00 pm | $6-$8 The Bourbon Theatre Marcey Yates (Op2mus) - 9:00 pm | $7 The Waiting Room Lounge A night of hip-hop, soul and songwriting with OEA Artist of the Year and Album of the Year Nominee Marcey Yates, J. Crum and his talented band and OEA Best Singer-Songwriter Nominee Jocelyn. Come out for an eclectic night of Omaha’s freshest talent.


Healing Tender Hearts - 11:30 am | Free Stinson Park, Aksarben Village Healing Tender Hearts Eat Healthy- Stay Fit Zumba Fitness Takeover Join us for Zumba Fitness on Sundays.

Christmas at the Cathedral - 2:00 pm | $18$30 St. Cecilia’s Cathedral Christmas Open House - 2:00 pm | Free Sarpy County Museum Come join us for our annual Christmas Open House until 4 p.m. Mingle with fellow supporters of local history while listening to a live band and enjoying refreshments. UNL Cocoa & Carols - 3:00 & 7:30 pm | $3-$5 Kimball Recital Hall The combined traditional UNL choirs will combine for an exciting holidayinspired massed choral performance of seasonal favorites titled COCOA & CAROLS: A FAMILY YULETIDE FESTIVAL OF CHOIRS. Combined will be UNL’s University Singers, the Boys Town Christmas Family Festival - 3:00 pm | Free Boys Town Visitor’s Center Start a new holiday tradition by celebrating the Christmas season at the Boys Town Christmas Family Festival. Family friendly activities include: cookie decorating, Irish Christmas crafts, and a visit from Santa and real live reindeer. University of Nebraska Men’s Basketball - 6:00 pm | Free University of Nebraska-Lincoln Athletics Salsa Sundays - 7:00 pm | $5 House of Loom We’ve dedicated our Sunday nights & our classic wood floors at House of Loom to all things salsa, buchata, merengue, cha-cha-cha, pachanga & guaguanco. And to host & DJ the night, we’ve choses long-time loom collaborator & someone we think to be the most charismatic & talented salsa dancer in Omaha a Mr. Blandon ‘Salserodalante’ Joiner. Live Jazz and Blues Pianist Ray Williams 7:30 pm | Free The Omaha Lounge Luigi, Inc. - 9:00 pm | Free Mr. Toad’s Pub Omaha Since 1975, Mr. Toad has brought you the finest Jazz Omaha has to offer in our Library. The legendary Luigi Waites held court there for nearly 35 years until his passing in April of 2010. The gig goes on as Luigi would’ve wished, with his band ‘Luigi, Inc.’ holding down the fort with their cool contemporary jazz.


Live Blues and Jazz Saxaphone with Ed Archibald - 7:30 pm | Free The Omaha Lounge Dave Hall, Percussion - 7:30 pm | Free Kimball Recital Hall Faculty artist Dave Hall will present a solo concert marimba, ‘junk’ percussion, and processed electronic sounds. Wrestling Trivia: Survivor Series - 8:00 pm | Free The Waiting Room Lounge Dave Campbell & Marq Manner hosts the first ever Wrestling Trivia: Survivor Series Team Rules at The Waiting Room Lounge. The crazy world of professional wrestling is going to be the focus of the first ever happening and we are doing it by Survivor Series rules. Bring your friends and family for teammates and test your wrestling wisdom with other fans in the metro. Open Mic - 9:00 pm | Free Barley Street Tavern Sign up at the bar after 7pm. Monday Night Comedy - 9:00 pm | Free Duffy’s Tavern Lincoln


Pub Quiz - 9:00 pm | Free The Slowdown Omaha Pretty much weekly since 2007. Gather up a team of friends (or brains) and get ready for a challenge from the Quiz Masters. Live Blues Guitarist and Vocalist “Hector Anchondo” - 7:30 pm | Free The Omaha Lounge Diane Barger/Mark Clinton/Jeff McCray Trio - 7:30 pm | Free Westbrook Recital Hall This recital program features two ‘bookends’ of works originally composed for clarinet, bassoon, and piano (Hurlstone’s Variations in G minor and Douglas’s Trio #2) and two compositions written for clarinet, piano, and a string instrument (viola Bruch’s Acht St cke, op. 83; and cello Muczynski’s Fantasy Trio, op. 26). Creighton Men’s Basketball - 8:00 pm | $15$50 CenturyLink Center Omaha Shakey Graves - 9:00 pm | $12 ADV/$15 DOS The Waiting Room Lounge While his remarkable success story continues to unfold, Alejandro Rose-Garcia sees And the War Came as a pivotal step in the evolution of Shakey Graves. ‘This is a doorframe album, as we’re going into a new building,’ he says.


Live Jazz Pianist Ben Tweedt - 7:30 am | Free The Omaha Lounge University of Nebraska Men’s Basketball - 7:00 pm | Free University of Nebraska-Lincoln Athletics Live Jazz Pianist Ben Tweedt - 7:30 pm | Free The Omaha Lounge Comedy Open Mic - 10:00 pm | Free Barley Street Tavern



DEC. 4 - 10, 2014



Graham, TUF, Németh, RSB “A TOUR DE FORCE” - The Hollywood Reporter “A TRIUMPH ON EVERY LEVEL” - Variety



DEC. 4 - 10, 2014




he remarkable alchemist Jon Dee Graham brings his luminous music to Lincoln’s Zoo Bar Monday, Dec. 8, 7 p.m. Graham’s songs cut to the core of real, daily joys and pains. His music delivers quicksilver flashes that are light in the darkness and even light in celebration of light. Graham’s music makes a difference. He’s also a threetime inductee into the Austin Music Hall of Fame and a veteran Texas musician who was part of the threeguitar onslaught of True Believers with Alejandro and Javier Escovedo. Graham has just released Do Not Forget, a collection of live recordings. The album is available as a digital download at jondeegraham. com. Lincoln’s own Josh Hoyer appears performing with Graham’s trio at the Zoo Bar on one of Graham’s iconic tunes, “October.” These live recordings shine with Graham’s extraordinary ability to do musical conjuring. His music distills fears and trials into hope that the listener’s heart and soul can hang onto. Mike June also performs Monday. June is a fine songwriter whose blues-inflected roots-rock takes an unflinching look at gritty, real life and today’s issues. Jon Langford of Mekons and Waco Brothers says, “Mike June has an iron spine and is unafraid enough to mix tricky realism and genuine outrage in his songs.” See


Toy Drive on the Radio Larry “Lash” Dunn and I will be joining Rick Galusha on “PS Blues” Sunday, Dec. 7, 9 a.m. to noon on 89.7 The River. We’ll be talking about this year’s Toy Drive for Pine Ridge and sharing live music from studio guests. Each Christmas, the drive delivers donations including toys for the children, blankets and outerwear for families, emergency heating for the elderly, educational resources and more to one of the poorest zip codes in America. Visit to learn more or donate. 21st Saloon Blues Trampled Under Foot plays their final Omaha show Thursday, Dec. 4, 6-9 p.m. at The 21st Saloon. Danielle and Nick Schnebelen are each starting their own bands. See Popular Texas guitarist Hamilton Loomis plays Sunday, Dec. 7, 6 p.m. Royal Southern Brotherhood has a show Wednesday, Dec. 10, 6-9 p.m. The band now features Bart Walker filling Mike Zito’s shoes alongside Devon Allman and Cyril Neville. See Hot Notes Powerhouse harmonica player, singer and bandleader John Németh gigs at Lincoln’s Zoo Bar Wednesday, Dec. 3, 6-9 p.m. and plays a free show Saturday, Dec. 6, 9 p.m., at Barley’s, 114 W. Broadway, Council Bluffs. Kris Lager Band plugs in at the Zoo Bar Saturday, Dec. 6, 9 p.m. ,

HOODOO is a weekly column focusing on blues, roots, Americana and occasional other music styles with an emphasis on live music performances. Hoodoo columnist B.J. Huchtemann is a Reader senior contributing writer and veteran music journalist who has covered the local music scene for nearly 20 years. Follow her blog at


Climb Every Mountain


fter a season like this, you have no choice but to look with admiration at the Iowa State sports fan. Life is, indeed, different for Cyclones. Unlike your typical Nebraska Cornhusker, there is no burning anxiety leading up to and following Saturdays in the fall. Iowa State fans seem satisfied merely fielding a team and are pleasantly surprised when that team walks off the grid iron with a win. Sure, there are hopes, but rarely are there any expectations. I know this having lived with a Cyclone for years. As a graduate of Iowa State, Teresa is immune to the madness that follows the Husker program, and conversely so am I. We both look at the plight of Nebraska’s football team like rubber-neckers slowly driving past a three-car pile-up that has closed down the right lane of a county road, glancing over at the twisted metal carnage trying to ascertain whose fault it was, looking intently for any bodies still strewn along the graveled shoulder. By the time the blue-and-red lights have faded in the rear-view mirror our thoughts are onto something else, while back there someone’s life has been changed forever. After both the Wisconsin and Minnesota games, the idea that Husker head coach Bo Pelini could be fired briefly crossed our minds but was put on the back burner. They’d never fire him, we thought, not after a 9-win season. Despite serious personality defects that include the inability to rationally talk to a player on the sidelines after a blown play — his face instead transforming into a blistering-red hate cannon — Pelini was still Nebraska’s best option. Or so we thought. Perhaps too much Cyclone mentality had crept into our logic process, because even after winning only two games this season, there is little doubt in either of our minds that Cyclone head football coach Paul Rhoads will be back next season. Those thoughts were validated when, during a call-in show the Monday following Iowa State’s most recent loss, Iowa State AD Jamie Pollard compared Rhoads to a mountain climber. “…You’ve got to have a chip on your shoulder and you’ve got to try to do something that others maybe are afraid to do or couldn’t do or don’t want to try to do,” Pollard was quoted as saying in the Des Moines Register. “That’s what inspires all of us to be here, and it’s to climb a mountain that others have never gotten to the top (of ). I look forward to continuing that journey with coach Rhoads and hopefully getting there.” Going winless in the Big 12 with no bowl game to cap off the season is all part of climbing the mountain. And Cyclone fans wouldn’t have it any other way. And anyway, basketball is now in full force and The Mayor, Fred Hoiberg, already has things well under control. Hoiberg is confidently guiding a nationally ranked team through the pre-conference season, but even if he wasn’t, The Mayor is so beloved, so looked upon as a local hero, that it would take a major felony conviction involving minors for him to lose his job. Hoiberg will

helm the Cyclone basketball program for as long as he wants to. Few other NCAA coaches have such job security. It’s all part of being a Cyclone. One could argue Iowa State fans approach collegiate sports in a healthy, holistic manner. Not so Husker fans. Their Monday was spent speculating who would take over the football program after Nebraska AD Shawn Eichorst announced Pelini’s ouster during a press conference filled either with calm, rational confusion or outright lies, depending on your point of view. No businessman like Eichorst, whose pedigree includes time spent at the big-time football factory called the University of Miami, fires a head football coach unless he already knows who will replace him. The answer remains a mystery as I write this in the dark early morning hours of Dec. 2, but by the time you read this later this week, a new Nebraska head football coach could very well have been named and likely has been. Despite my emotional distance from the Husker program — I went to UNO and am a Maverick first and foremost — it was impossible not to speculate with my co-worker at my “real job,” one of the state’s (nay, the country’s) most important Nebraska sports bloggers, Husker Mike ( As effortlessly as you would name your children, Husker Mike rattled off a list of possible candidates, including Minnesota head coach Jerry Kill and Colorado State head coach Jim McElwain. He dismissed rumors surrounding shamed Ohio State coach Jim Tressel (still under NCAA penalty, he said) and former Nebraska quarterback Scott Frost, currently earning a measly $400,000 as offensive coordinator at PNW powerhouse Oregon (impressive, but too inexperienced). We both agree that whoever Eichorst chooses (or has already chosen) has to be a big name, a splashy name, a name even the most tangential of Husker fans will recognize. There is no point elevating an anonymous assistant coach from a familiar program. The Pelini fans, of which there are still plenty, will howl like cornered hyenas throwing their own dung and screaming that the program was better off with the drama that was Bo Pelini. Husker Mike’s most ambitious speculation also was my favorite: that Eichorst would try to woo away Baylor head coach Art Briles, a guy who single-handedly turned around an embarrassing punching-bag of a program into a possible national title contender in the same amount of time it took Pelini to guide the Huskers into forgotten national mediocrity. With a stroke of a pen, Eichorst could double Briles’ salary and put the full power of Husker Nation behind him. Briles would be a huge win, but even I know that it’s not likely to happen. Why would he leave a team that’s already accomplished so much? Indeed, despite the promise of millions, why would any quality coach leave behind success to pull a program out of an unending ditch, to climb a seemingly insurmountable mountain? ,

OVER THE EDGE is a weekly column by Reader senior contributing writer Tim McMahan focused on culture, society, music, the media and the arts. Email Tim at And be sure to check out his blog at



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Sex Mountain


ndonesia’s holy “Sex Mountain” on the island of Java is still performing its incomprehensible function of making Muslims feel prosperous and optimistic if they have intercourse with strangers, as reported in November by Australia’s “SBS Dateline” TV program. A reporter journeyed to Mount Kemukus (near the heavily populated Surakarta) to observe the mass adultery whose origin dates to the 16th century. Otherwise-devout pilgrims pray, bathe and pair off with other worshippers (repeating the ritual seven times, 35 days apart) to bring themselves the good life -- except that the sex must be with people other than their spouses. Clerics generally denounce the Kemukus experience, but more so since prostitutes (collecting “offerings”) are lately so plentiful at the site.

Can’t Possibly Be True Comprehensive Pentagon studies of America’s nuclear missile infrastructure released in November (following disturbing reports of readiness failures) included the revelation that nuclear warheads had to be attached with a particular wrench, even though the Air Force owned only one with which to service 450 missiles housed at three bases. Consequently, one official told The New York Times, “They started FedExing the one tool” back and forth. No one had checked in years, he said, “to see if new tools were being made” -- typical of maintenance problems that had “been around so long that no one reported them anymore.” -- Autumn Canceled: London’s Daily Telegraph reported in November that a gardener hired by the House of Commons had spent a day pulling color-


DEC. 4 - 10, 2014


weird news

changing leaves from trees on the Westminster Palace grounds -- because it would be more cost-effective than to rake them up after they fell. The gardener (whose name sounds right out of a James Bond adventure -- “Annabel Honeybun”) said she had 145 trees to service. (A local environmentalist lamented denying autumn visitors “one of the few pleasures at this time of year.”

Cultural Diversity Various cogs in South Korea’s national machinery paused briefly on Nov. 13 so as not to distract the nation’s high-school-age kids, as 650,000 of them were sitting for the decisive university entrance exams (which are several levels more important than the SATs or ACTs for American students). Large companies and government agencies told employees to commute later in the morning -- to keep traffic lighter for students traveling to the 1,257 test centers -- and “no-fly” zones reduced noise during the 40-minute period in which students tested aurally on the English language. Latest Spiritual Messages “Santa Muerte” (Our Lady of the Holy Death) might be described as a cynic’s unauthorized byproduct of Roman Catholicism currently festering in drug-cartel-roiled Mexico and Central America and is, according to Vice Media, “the world’s fastest growing” religion. “Saint Death” first appeared only 12 years ago, in the Mexico City barrio of Tepito, and is now a first line of protection for worshippers in danger zones. (Almost 80,000 Mexicans have been killed in drug-related violence since 2006, Vice reported.) Said an author who has studied the religion, “People feel more comfortable asking (Santa Muerte) for favors they probably shouldn’t ask a Catholic saint for.”

COPYRIGHT 2014 CHUCK SHEPHERD. Visit Chuck Shepherd daily at NewsoftheWeird. or Send Weird News to or P.O. Box 18737, Tampa, FL 33679. Illustrations by Tom Briscoe (

American Scenes (1) Mmmm, Omelets! A crash of three tractor-trailers on Interstate 24 near Chattanooga, Tennessee, on Nov. 9 left a pileup of one truck’s load of eggs, another’s pallets of cheese, and the other’s boxes of meat. (2) “Drunken Trombone-Playing Clown Fires Gun From Garage, Police Say” (an Oct. 21 story on MLive. com from Grand Traverse County, Michigan, also reported that the man was wearing camo pants). Animal Intelligence Parrots and Snakes: A November story from Leighon-Sea, England, reported that a Senegal parrot (apparently feeling restive with its owners on holiday) managed to pick two locks on its cage and fly away. The second lock had been installed as insurance after an earlier lock-picking escape. Also, a missing African gray parrot was returned to its Torrance, California, owner in October after a hiatus -- in which the parrot had learned to speak Spanish. On the other hand, a hungry 5-foot-long black rat snake in Verona, Pennsylvania, had to be saved by surgery after it failed to distinguish between chicken eggs in a coop (tasty) and a nearby ceramic egg (lifethreatening organ failure). Took It Too Far Just Possibly Racist: One of the questions offered in testing by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg (North Carolina) school district for high school biology in November sought students’ understanding of dominant and recessive genes with this puzzle: “LaShamanda has a heterozygous big bootie, the dominant trait. Her man Fontavius has a small bootie which is recessive. They get married and have a baby named LaPrincess. What is the probability that LaPrincess will inherit her mama’s big bootie?” (Charlotte TV station WBTV was unable to confirm that the school system created the question, even though

the question was apparently distributed with other system materials.) -- Summer “comfort food” season is an opportunity for imaginative (and shameless) chefs to take caloric overload to the next level, annually extending themselves to build the sweetest (and, generally, the least heartfriendly) concoctions imaginable. Hence, Deep-Fried Candy Corn (in a base of crescent rolls) made its debut this year, along with the Double Donut burger (two beef patties piled with cheese and bacon between “buns” of glazed donuts (1,996 calories and 53 grams of saturated fat).

Least Competent Sheriff’s Employee After consulting with the FBI, military and state law-enforcement and security agencies, the sheriff of Dickson County, Tennessee, concluded that his only option to rescue his departmental records database from malicious malware was to pay a $500 ransom to the creators of the CryptoWall “trojan,” which had attacked and encrypted his files. A total of 72,000 files, including witness statements and other evidence in criminal cases, was temporarily inaccessible after a department computer user clicked on the wrong part of a screen in late October. (PC World reported in August that within the pervious six months, CryptoWall’s developers were estimated to have “earned” $1 million in “ransoms.”) Recurring Themes In the U.S.’s fourth reported case, a state issued a driver’s license even though the applicant was photographed wearing a colander (as a “religious covering,” the only “hats” legally permitted in such photos). Jessica Steinhauser said the motor vehicles office in Hurricane, Utah, simply shrugged at her affiliation with the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster (created in 2005 to offer the proposition that God’s existence is no better “proven” than the FSM’s). ,

Upcoming Events Women’s Basketball Wednesday, Dec. 3rd, 7:05 PM vs.

Thursday, Dec. 11th, 8:05 PM vs.

Men’s Basketball Tuesday, Dec. 9th, 8:15 PM vs.

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DEC. 4 - 10, 2014





n 1965, Stephen Hawking wrote his first groundbreaking thesis and wed Jane Wilde. His paper argued that if a star can collapse inwards to form a singularity, then a singularity can explode back outward. The Theory of Everything explores this same theory, only instead of stars, it’s marriage. Which isn’t to say new “stars” aren’t formed; Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones both provide sensational performances in The Theory of Everything, even as director James Marsh falls back on some tired cliches. Although hard to imagine without his motorized wheelchair, the film opens with Hawking cycling on his way to a party with graduate student friends. There, Hawking (Redmayne) meets Jane (Jones), a fellow student at Cambridge. He charms her with scientific facts and quirky smiles until all but a few have retired for the night. Hawking is surprised when a phone number is thrust his way upon her exit. Thanks to Redmayne, Hawking’s lack of social graces doesn’t feel contrived but reveals a dual nature: He demonstrates mental acumen by solving “impossible” equations for his astonished professor (David

Film Streams at the Ruth Sokolof Theater 14th & Mike Fahey Street (formerly Webster Street) More info & showtimes 402.933.0259 · Facebook | Twitter | Instagram: @filmstreams


DEC. 4 - 10, 2014

Thewlis) and yet considers his parent’s house a suitable first date. Ultimately, the optimism of young love prevails, enhanced for the audience by a strong chemistry between the actors. Then comes Hawking’s ALS diagnosis... As with the rest of the film, writer Anthony McCarten doesn’t turn things into disability pornography. Previous scenes serve as building blocks to garner sympathy, but characters are allowed to express genuine feelings. In one impactful montage, Hawking attempts to play croquet with Jane after his diagnosis. Each hit of the ball and tremor of the hand conveys repressed anger. She watches in tears, then joins him later in his torn-apart room, determined to stay for the duration of his illness. Over time, Jane’s role becomes that of a caretaker, as three children are born and her husband’s illness progresses. Marsh deftly shows this through costume changes and muted filters. At this point, a church choir director, Jonathon (Charlie Cox), becomes a pivotal third party. Instead of exploring the messy and fascinating emotions that accompany Jonathon, and later




Elaine’s (Maxine Peake), entrance into the Hawkings’ lives, events are glossed over in favor of fictional Super 8 home movies. Although the package will be satisfying for most, Jane’s 2006 memoir (upon which the screenplay is based) reveals missed opportunities for richer, truer reflection. This doesn’t mean the film is a failure. On the contrary, as someone who has watched the devastation of ALS firsthand, I can attest that Redmayne’s physical performance was so accurate as to be difficult to watch. His curled fingers stirred personal memories with their bend. His slurred speech naturally progressed, with a genuine gradual head tilt and realistic stumbles. The performance isn’t simply amazing, it is well-informed and a stunning achievement. The Oscar buzz trailing the film is warranted, if only so far as the performances are concerned. What the script lacks in drama, the cast more than makes up for it with heart. The Theory of Everything doesn’t have it all, but it does have more than most. , GRADE = B+

n Not that I’ve watched the teaser for Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens a lot, but this may be the longest that I’ve gone without replaying it. Actually, hold on a second, I have to do…something… Okay, I’m back. One of the only controversies about the gobstopping wonderment-inducing footage is whose voice that is dripping with Britishness and menace in the voiceover. Many thought it was Benedict Cumberbatch, which is what I thought too, but it turns out it’s Gollum. Seriously, Andy Serkis, best known for playing the “precious”-loving baldie is the teaser’s narrator, doing what can only be described as a “Cumber-pression.” It has been confirmed as Serkis, so now you can tell your friends. What? Your friends aren’t doing nothing but talking about this trailer? Get some new friends. n Talk about a movie going from off my radar to the top of my “gimme now” list: Aaron Sorkin’s upcoming Steve Jobs movie went from having Christian Bale as the turtlenecked guru to having Michael Fassbender turtling his neck. With Danny Boyle directing, that already sounds bad-ass before you tell me Natalie Portman is in talks to play Jobs’ daughter, Lisa, who Sorkin calls “the heroine of the movie.” How do you like them Apple? n “We finally really did it. You maniacs! Damn you. God damn you all to hell!” What? Is there another way to tell you they officially greenlit an Independence Day sequel without Will Smith? n Ridley Scott, who has done many things I admire and a few big things I don’t, added to the latter this week by responding to the “whitewashing” controversy surrounding Exodus: Gods and Kings. In a flippant response, Scott addressed his decision to have historic Middle East figures played by the whitest humans imaginable by saying he couldn’t have gotten the movie funded using racially accurate actors. Racism: It’s good for business! . —Ryan Syrek Cutting Room provides breaking local and national movie news … complete with added sarcasm. Send any relevant information to Check out Ryan on Movieha!, a weekly halfhour movie podcast (, catch him on the radio on CD 105.9 ( on Fridays at around 7:30 a.m. and on KVNO 90.7 ( at 8:30 a.m. on Fridays and follow him on Twitter (

First-Run Films

Coming Soon

Films from Warhol’s Factory

The Theory of Everything First-Run (PG-13)

The Tale of the Princess Kaguya First-Run The Babadook First-Run Happy Valley First-Run

Sunday, December 7

A biopic about famed cosmologist Stephen Hawking. An Omaha exclusive!

Forever Young

Citizenfour First-Run

Kiki’s Delivery Service 1989 (G)

Dir. Laura Poitras. Starts Friday, December 5

Dir. Hayao Miyazaki. December 6, 7 & 11

A chilling documentary about domestic surveillance that captures whistleblower Edward Snowden’s first contact with press.

From the master Miyazaki comes the tale of a resourceful young witch who starts an air courrier to make ends meet.

Dir. James Marsh. Through Thursday, January 8



Outer and Inner Space 1963 (4:30 pm) Kiss 1965 (5:45 pm) Wednesday, December 10

Velvet Underground & Nico (6:45 pm) My Hustler 1965 (8 pm) Two-for-one double features presented with with Joslyn Art Museum to coincide with their exhibition In Living Color: Andy Warhol and Contemporary Printmaking. Film Streams celebrates Andy Warhol’s productive and tumultuous history with film!


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GIVE THE EXTRAORDINARY EXQUISITE DANCE. PROFOUND CULTURE. AN AWE-INSPIRING EXPERIENCE. This holiday season, give your loved ones tickets to an extraordinary journey that will inspire, uplift and leave remarkable memories for years to come.



“5,000 years of Chinese music and dance in one night!” —The New York Times

“Absolutely the No. 1 Show in the world... No other company or of any style can match this!” —Kenn Wells, former lead dancer of the English National Ballet

“I was in heaven watching it!” —Andrea Huber, veteran dance critic

PROFOUND. BEAUTIFUL. INSPIRING. Let Shen Yun take you on a journey through 5,000 years of divinely inspired culture. Legends, myths, and heroes spring to life through classical Chinese dance. Ethnic and folk dances fill the stage with color and energy. The leaps and flips of Shen Yun’s aerial masters, thunderous battle drums, and singers’ soaring voices are all set to animated backdrops that transport you to another world.

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JANUARY 13–14 | ORPHEUM THEATER | | 402-345-0606

“Unique and inspirational… Absolutely beautiful!” —Robert Stromberg, director of Maleficent and Oscar-winning production designer for Avatar


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The Reader Dec. 4 - 10, 2014  

Omaha Nebraska Newsweekly Arts Entertainment Film Abide

The Reader Dec. 4 - 10, 2014  

Omaha Nebraska Newsweekly Arts Entertainment Film Abide