November 1, 2017

Ultimate Omaha Holiday Events List

Updated: Sept. 11, 2018

Omaha is the best place for a family to celebrate Christmas and New Year’s Eve in 2018. You can find free activities, every kind of live performance from ballet to orchestra to rock, and a ton of chances to meet Santa around town.

Got a kid-free night ahead of you? Good, I also included some activities that are perfect for a holiday date night.

Pin this post because I will add to this list often!

Omaha Holiday Events in 2018

Holiday Decor 

When: Mid-November to early January 2019; weekdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and weekends, from 1 to 4 p.m.

Where: General Crook House Museum, 5730 No. 30th St. 11b

What: Tour the museum while enjoying complimentary apple cider and cookies. The Victorian-style home is decorated throughout for Christmas.

Cost: Suggested donation is $7, adults, and $5, children

 

Neighborhood Toy Store Day

When: Nov. 10, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Where: Fat Brain Toys, 16909 Burke St., Suite 131

What: A celebration of Neighborhood Toy Store Day and holiday season kick off with real reindeer, fun photo area, hot chocolate and crafts.

Cost: FREE

 

“A Tale Of Two Dickens

When: Nov. 10; performances are at 3 p.m. at The Field Club of Omaha and 7 p.m. at theGeneral Crook House Museum

Where: Field Club of Omaha, 3615 Wolworth Ave., and General Crook House Museum, 5730 No. 30th St. 11b

What: Gerald Dickens, great-great grandson of Charles Dickens, will perform a one-man performance of “A Christmas Carol.” Traditional tea held at 2 p.m. before the Field Club performance and a cocktail begins at 6 p.m. before the Crook House performance.

Cost: $37 for Members, $40 for Non-Members (Field Club performance) and $75 (Crook House performance)

 

Holiday Expo: All About Her

When: Nov. 10, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Where: Baxter Arena, 2425 S. 67th St.

What: Exhibitors will have items to shop for relating to fashion, food and more.

Cost: $1

 

Winterfest Council Bluffs

When: November-January

Where: Bayliss Park, 599 First Ave., Council Bluffs, Iowa

What: An outdoor lighting ceremony, lights display and more TBD

Cost: FREE

 

“A Christmas Carol”

When: Nov. 16 though Dec. 23; performances are Wednesdays at 7 p.m., Thursdays-Saturday at 7:30 p.m., and Sundays at 2 and 6:30 p.m.

Where: Omaha Community Playhouse, 6915 Cass St.

What: This is an annual tradition on stage in Omaha. Read What To Expect If You Bring Kids “A Christmas Carol.”

Cost: $38 (for the 2017 performance; ticket prices have not been announced for 2018)

 

Gingerbread House Display at Historic Winter Quarters

When: Mid-November through Dec. 31, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily; the center closes at 3 P.M. on Thanksgiving Eve, Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve. The center will be closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.

Where: Mormon Trail Center at Historic Winter Quarters, 3215 State St.

What: It’s an annual gingerbread house display that’s free to visit. See pictures from a past festival here!

Cost: FREE

 

Gingerbread House Display at Kanesville Tabernacle

When: Mid-November through Dec. 31, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily; the center closes at 3 P.M. on Thanksgiving Eve, Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve. The center will be closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.

Where: Kanesville Tabernacle, 222 East Broadway, Council Bluffs, Iowa

What: It’s an annual gingerbread house display that’s free to visit. 

Cost: FREE

 

 

NRG Energy Ice Rink

When: Nov. 21 through Feb. 14, 2018; hours are Sundays–Thursday, 3 to 10 p.m., Friday & Saturday, 1 p.m. to midnight, Christmas Eve & New Year’s Eve, 1 to 5 p.m. (opening ceremony is Nov. 21 at 6 p.m.)

Where: The Capitol District, 11th Street and Capitol Avenue

What: Outdoor skating in downtown Omaha.

Cost: $8, includes skate rental (admission is still required for patrons who bring their own skates) and benefits the Food Bank for the Heartland.

 

Holiday Harmony

When: Nov. 22, Nov. 24-26, and Dec. 2-3, Dec. 9-10, and Dec. 15-23, various times

Where: Lauritzen Gardens, First and Bancroft streets

What: Enjoy live music amid the festive garden surroundings.

Cost: Included with admission, which is $10 adults, $5 children 6-12). Members are admitted FREE.

 

Deck The Park

When: Nov. 22 (lights on at dusk)

Where: Midtown Crossing, 33rd and Farnam streets

What: Enjoy discounts at some of the stores and restaurants, plus see the trees light up for the season at dusk.

Cost: FREE

 

Holiday Lights Festival Downtown Holiday Lights

When: Nov. 22 through Jan. 1, 2019, 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. nightly ( Thanksgiving Lighting Festival event is Nov. 23, 6 to 7 p.m.)

Where: Gene Leahy Mall, 14th and Farnam streets

What: Trees around the Old Market and mall are lit up for Christmas.

Cost: FREE

 

Making Spirits Bright Holiday Concert

When: Nov. 22, 7 p.m.

Where: Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St.

What: This free concert is part of the Holiday Lights Festival kick-off.

Cost: FREE

 

“Santa’s Magic”

When: Nov. 23 through Dec. 23, multiple shows daily

Where: Omaha Children’s Museum, 500 S. 20th St.

What: An interactive exhibit featuring Santa, the Snow Queen, elves and indoor snow. Be sure to come with your wish list.

Cost: Included with regular Museum admission, which is $13 for ages 2+, $12 for seniors, and FREE for children younger than 24 months and members

 

Tree Lighting Ceremony

When: Nov. 23, 4 to 8 p.m. (tree lighting at approximately 7)

Where: The Durham Museum, 801 S. 10th St.

What: Meet Santa, see the Festival of Trees and countdown the tree lighting at Durham Museum.

Cost: Included with regular admission, which is $11 for adults; $8 for seniors; $7 for children 3-12; and free for members and children age 2 and under.

 

Holiday Poinsettia Show

When: Nov. 23 through Jan. 6, 2019 (closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day); the Holiday Poinsettia Aglow even is 5 to 8 p.m. in the evenings.

Where: Lauritzen Gardens, First and Bancroft streets

What: This indoor flower show is perfect for the holidays, plus the indoor model train is always a hit with kids.

Cost: Included with admission, which is $10 adults, $5 children 6-12). Members are admitted FREE.

 

Christmas At Union Station

When: Nov. 23 through Jan. 6, 2019

Where: The Durham Museum, 801 S. 10th St.

What: See the region’s largest Christmas tree, the Holiday Cultural Tree Exhibit, and meet Santa (Saturdays, Nov. 25-Dec. 23, 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Sundays, Nov. 26-Dec. 17, 1-3 p.m.; Tuesdays on Dec. 4, 11 and 18, 5 to 8 p.m.). Holiday Concert Series performances are Saturdays at 10 a.m., Sundays at 1 p.m., and Tuesdays (in December) at 5 p.m. Holiday Cultural Festival is Nov. 30 from 5 to 8 p.m. Family Nights With Santas are every Tuesday in December from 5 to 8 p.m. 

Cost: Included with regular admission, which is $11 for adults; $8 for seniors; $7 for children 3-12; and free for members and children age 2 and under.

 

Never been to The Durham Museum? Here’s a Durham Museum primer for families before your first visit.

 

Winter Wonderland

When: Nov. 24

Where: Downtown Papillion, Neb.

What: The downtown is lit with lights, while families can enjoy free activities like carriage rides, hot chocolate and s’mores, visits with Santa, photos with live reindeer and many more activities. There’s also a Christkindl market.

Cost: FREE

 

Sounds of the Season

When: Saturdays, Nov. 24 through Dec. 22, 7 to 8 p.m.

Where: Gene Leahy Mall and the Old Market

What: Carolers and performers will be performing on Saturday nights.

Cost: FREE

 

“Holidays at Hogwarts”

When: Nov. 29 through Dec. 22

Where: The Apollon, 1801 Vinton St.

What: An interactive dinner show featuring Harry Potter characters. 

Cost: TBD

Read the review of the 2017 “Holidays at Hogwarts” show here.

 

98 Degrees At Christmas

When: Nov. 29, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St.

What: From 1997 to 2002, 98 Degrees sold a staggering 10 million records. The band is back together and touring the holiday season.

Cost: TBD

 

“Elf: The Musical”

When: Nov. 30 through Dec. 23; performances are Fridays at 7 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. (some performance are already sold out)

Where: The Rose, 2001 Farnam St.

What: “Elf: The Musical” is Broadway musical-style show based on the hit movie, “Elf.” It features Buddy the Elf who learns from Santa that he’s a human. The enormous former elf embarks on a quest to the sparkling city of New York during the holidays to find his father.

Cost: $20 for members and $27 for non-members on the main floor, and $15 for members and $22 for non-members on the balcony

 

“Cirque Musica Holiday Presents: Wonderland”

When: Nov. 30, 7:30 p.m.

Where: CHI Health Center, 455 N. 10th St.

What: A holiday concert featuring music by the Omaha Symphony and aerial performances.

Cost: Tickets start at $32

 

Hot Shops 18th Annual Open House

When: Dec. 1 and 2; Saturday from noon to 8 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.

Where: Hot Shops Art Center, 1301 Nicholas St.

What: Shop for one-of-kind, handmade gifts, and view artist studios and demonstrations

Cost: FREE

 

Santa Goes To Space

When: Dec. 1, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Where: Strategic Air Command and Aerospace Museum, 28210 West Park Highway, Ashland, Neb.

What: It’s Santa Claus and Star Wars, with kids activities and free planetarium shows.

Cost: Included with admission, which is $12, adults; $11, seniors and military; $6, children (ages 4-12); and FREE for children 3 and younger)

 

Physicians Mutual and WOWT Holiday Market

When: Dec. 1 and Dec. 2, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Where: Aksarben Village, 1920 S. 67th St.

What: Shop theGerman-style open-air market housed under heated tents with more than 55 local vendors. Santa is there Sunday from 2 to 4 p.m.

Cost: FREE

 

“Christmas with Dailey & Vincent”

When: Dec. 2, 2 p.m.

Where: The Arts Center at Iowa Western Community Center, 

What: Catch Dailey and Vincent from their their nationally broadcast television series bring their Christmas music to you. After a decade preforming fantastically instinctive vocal blends of Dailey’s tenor and Vincent’s reedy harmonies, they have gained well-deserved praise for their own distinctive style.

Cost: $30-39, general admission; $27-36, senior; $13, students & under 21

 

Joyful Noise: A Gospel Christmas featuring Salem Baptist Church

When: Dec. 2, 4 and 7:30 p.m.

Where: Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St.

What: An upbeat celebration featuring musical performances, theater and dance.

Cost: TBD

 

“The Madrigal Christmasse Feaste”

When: Dec. 4-7, 6 p.m. warming time and dinner/show begins at 7 p.m.

Where: Omaha Marriott Hotel, 10220 Regency Circle

What: Celebrate Christmas Renaissance-style with a yearly interactive dinner theatre.

Cost: $55 per person

 

First Friday Family Date Night – Milk & Cookies With Santa

When: Dec. 7, 5 to 8 p.m.

Where: Omaha Children’s Museum, 500 S. 20th St.

What: Enjoy winter-themed activities like Hot & Cold Science Show and Snowman Bingo, plus meet Santa and friends inside the special exhibit, Santa’s Magic.

Cost: Included with regular Museum admission, which is $13 for ages 2+, $12 for seniors, and FREE for children younger than 24 months and members

 

Holiday Happening

When: Dec. 8 and 9, noon to 4 p.m.

Where: Lauritzen Gardens, First and Bancroft streets

What: Fill yourself with holiday cheer! Stroll the beautiful poinsettia show, listen to live holiday music, and enjoy holiday food in front of the crackling fireplace in the café. Santa Claus will take photos, and children can make creative holiday crafts ($3 per child).

Cost: A $3 program fee for all participating children is charged, along with admission, which is $10 adults, $5 children (6-12). Members are admitted FREE.

 

American Midwest Ballet’s “The Nutcracker”

When: Dec. 8 and 9; performances are Saturday at 2 and 7:30 p.m., and Sunday at 2 p.m.

Where: Orpheum Theater, 409 S. 16th St.

What: The enchanting ballet set to one of Pyotr Tchaikovsky’s most famous scores.

Cost: TBD

 

Physicians Mutual Omaha Symphony Christmas Celebration

When: Dec. 8-16; performances are Thursdays and Fridays at 7:30 p.m., Saturdays at 2 and 7:30 p.m., and Sundays at 2 and 6 p.m.

Where: Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St.

What: An annual tradition on stage featuring the orchestra, dancing Santas, singers and more.

Cost:

 

Jazz to the World 9 – Vintage Holidays

When: Dec. 9, 4 p.m.

Where: 421 S. 36th St.

What: Ring in the holiday season with the Omaha MasterSingers and Diminuendo. This all acapella concert is sure to put you in the holiday mood as they return to the golden age of holidays tunes.

Cost: $15, adults; $12, seniors & students; FREE for kids 12 & under

 

Dave Koz and Friends: Christmas Tour 2018

When: Dec. 10, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St.

What: For more than two decades, jazz saxophonist Dave Koz’s holiday tour has been making spirits bright across the nation featuring an impressive roster of guest vocalists and musicians. 

Cost: TBD

 

Cookies, Carols and Cider: A Holiday Lights Tour

When: Dec. 14, 6 to 9 p.m.

Where: Various locations

What: This tour will take you through some of Omaha’s most-decorated neighborhoods for viewing of lights and holiday decorations.

Cost: $45

 

“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical”

When: Dec. 15, 2 and 7:30 p.m.

Where: Orpheum Theater, 409 S. 16th St.

What: The beloved TV classic, “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” soars off the screen and onto the stage this holiday season. 

Cost: TBD

 

2018 City of Omaha Carol Concert

When: Dec. 15, 6 p.m.

Where: Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center, 2825 Y St.

What: Join more than 10 performing arts groups from across the area as they celebrate the Spirit of Christmas. Guests are asked to bring a toy to donate to the Omaha Angel Tree Program.

Cost: FREE; $10 for VIP

 

Mannheim Steamroller Christmas

When: Dec. 22 and 23; performances are Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 7 p.m.

Where: Orpheum Theater, 409 S. 16th St.

What: The group’s Christmas concert is full of multimedia special effects and has become an annual holiday tradition at the Orpheum Theater.

Cost: TBD

 

Jim Brickman: A Joyful Christmas

When: Dec. 28, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St.

What: Grammy-nominated songwriter and piano sensation, Jim Brickman, brings his 30-city holiday tour “A Joyful Christmas” to Omaha. In honor of this 22nd annual holiday tour, Brickman will debut original songs, along with the sounds and stories of the season.

Cost: Tickets start at $28

 

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Huge list of Omaha holiday events, including Christmas concerts, festivals, Santa visits, and other traditional holiday activities

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