My kids don’t need a reason to visit any of the Omaha attractions – they beg to go whenever they sense a lull in conversation. But in case you’ve gone to them 1,000,000 times already, here’s what new at four downtown Omaha destinations to get you motivated to go back for the 1,000,001th time:
Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium
The zoo now offers camel rides. Head toward Red Barn Park between Durham’s Bear Canyon and Sue’s Carousel. Rides are from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The cost is $5 per person for each camel ride.
Sting Ray Beach is scheduled to open this summer by Red Barn Park from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. through Labor Day. The exhibit will be $4 for the general public and $3 for Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium members. Guests will be able to hand feed the rays for a small additional charge.
Omaha Children’s Museum
There are two new permanent additions to the museum – the kid-sized First National Bank Branch and Children’s Hospital and Medical Center where kids can pretend to bank, or doctors, nurses and patients.
Just for this summer – “Dinos: The Big Dig” is on the top floor of the museum and full of interactive areas. A little tip, if it’s pretty busy up there, there are two tents with quiet activities. I retreated to the one with books and dolls with my toddler when she started to get overwhelmed by all the commotion. Exhibit runs through Sept. 7.
Tied in with the dino exhibit is a mini train ride Dino-Train, which is an additional cost to museum admission. Train is also on the top floor.
Also check out Fairytale Land if you have a fan of princesses (and princes) in your house.
I’ll just warn you, it’s a big sugary dose of song and dance. And magical “snow fall.” It was a bit much for my 4-year-old son and husband. My daughter loved it.
The Children’s Garden is back open. It’s been closed for more than a year. The later in the summer you go see it, the more there will be to see (gardens work like that, ya know?). Check back in the late summer to really get the full corn maze experience.
Just this summer – “Design Zone” is a creative way to get kids and adults excited about math and science. The colorful exhibit includes a videogame design area and a recording studio. Exhibit runs through Sept. 24.
Your turn: What are you looking forward to visiting this summer?