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Best Parks In Omaha For Quick & Easy Picnics

Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, INC. and The Coca-Cola Company, all opinions are mine alone. #ServeWithACoke #CollectiveBias

My kids love picnics. Any night is a good night for a picnic–to them, at least. Weekday picnics? Tough. But I have a way to make quick, weekday picnics manageable and easy: Get a picnic meal to go at Hy-Vee and head to the nearest park. 

Shopping at Hy-Vee Omaha deli
Hy-Vee makes it easy to get a picnic meal to go. We went with fried chicken for ease of eating with kids.

We stopped by our usual Hy-Vee, picked out three sides to go with a 12-piece chicken meal, grabbed a 2 Liter of Coca-Cola™  and headed to Elmwood Park. Hy-Vee has a few meal deals that include a 2 Liter of Coke for $24.99. You can check out current store promotions here.

Coca-Cola display at Hy-Vee
Hy-Vee has meal deals that include a 2 Liter of Coca-Cola or other Coke product. Our local store had a Coca-Cola display conveniently near the hot food.

Our favorite picnic area in Midtown Omaha is at Elmwood Park. We like to pick a table in the shade near the playground.

Picnic at Elmwood Park in Omaha
Impromptu picnic in the park means mom forgets the plates.

Our quick, weekday picnic at the park was a success, even if I did forget plates!

Ready to get an easy meal to-go and find the nearest park? Here’s a list of the best Omaha parks that are near a Hy-Vee for quick and easy picnics.

Parks guide - Best parks in Omaha for picnics, including tips on where to buy quick picnic food nearby #Omaha #Nebraska

Elmwood Park

Where: 802 S. 60th St.

What makes it a great picnic park: There are several picnic tables available, most are shaded. The playground was updated last year and is a hit with kids. There’s also a nice, short walking trail in the trees along a creek that leads to a small grotto. Plenty of green space to run and play sports.

Nearest Hy-Vee: 7910 Cass St., about 2.5 miles away

Note: This Hy-Vee is also very close to one of the few sandless playgrounds in Omaha, Stinson Park in Aksarben Village. It’s about 3.5 miles from Hy-Vee.

Standing Bear Lake

Where: 6404 N. 132nd St.

What makes it a great picnic park: This lake might be the best picnic-with-a-view spot in Omaha. It is out of the way for most people, but its remoteness is what makes it appealing.. There plenty of green space, a playground, and trails that are particularly nice for bikes. If you plan ahead, you can bring fishing gear and enjoy the lake.

Nearest Hy-Vee: 10808 Fort St., about 3 miles away

Zorinski Lake

Where: 3808 S. 156th St.

What makes it a great picnic park: This pretty lake has two playgrounds, and miles and miles of trails for bike riding or long walks. There are a few picnic areas (many with covered shelters). The picnic area nearest the largest playground on the south side of the lake is covered.

Nearest Hy-Vee: 17810 Welch Plaza, about 2 miles away

Lawrence Youngman Park

Where: 192nd Street and West Dodge Road

What makes it a great picnic park: This is a large playground that is sure to tire your kids. There is a covered picnic area and the lake is nice to walk around or fish.

Nearest Hy-Vee: 1000 S. 178th St., about 4 miles away

Walnut Creek Lake & Recreation

Where: 11601 S. 96th St., Papillion, Neb.

What makes it a great picnic park: This Papillion park has a large lake with about 3 miles of paved trail, making it a fun spot for an easy bike ride. There is a playground and picnic areas, including some covered shelters.

Nearest Hy-Vee: 11650 S. 73rd St., Papillion, Neb., about 4 miles away

Elmwood Park in Omaha
When you’re short on time, a picnic meal to go from Hy-Vee paired with Coke does the job.

Want some additional idea for a good picnic in Omaha? Here are four more of our favorite  Picnic Spots In Omaha (and they’re not all parks!).

Where’s your favorite park in Omaha for picnics?

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Mark Adkins

Saturday 20th of June 2020

We've been doing 'quicknics' for a few years now. Generally, a quicknic is a picnic where we cheat- maybe we eat in the car while parked somewhere interesting (like the pine-lined road just east of UNO by Elmwood pool) while snowing or raining. Often the 'quick' part is picking up something to go from lots of different kinds of places.

We keep some plasticware, cleaning wipes, paper towels, condiments, etc. in the car to make it even easier.

Some of our favorite parks for this that have not been listed yet are Towl Park, Hummel (although it can be trashy sometimes), Hitchcock Nature Center, Heron Haven's parking lot, OPPD Arboretum (although it lacks restrooms, etc.),

Gretchen Garrison

Monday 25th of September 2017

We often enjoy picnics when we travel to Omaha. I have not been too enough parks, so I am glad to have the suggestions. We did like Zorinsky Park, but we did not stay there long enough to eat.


Wednesday 27th of September 2017

Zorinski is one of my favorite lakes for being active, and it has a great playground. But if you want scenery, you can find better in Omaha!

Nicole Elliott ~ Client

Monday 18th of September 2017

How fun!! We visit parks frequently but honestly I'd never even thought about picking up a ready made meal and going on a weeknight for a fun picnic--we'll definitely have to do this soon!


Tuesday 19th of September 2017

Thanks, Nicole! It was the easiest dinner in a long time. :)

Val - Corn, Beans, Pigs & Kids

Monday 18th of September 2017

Our family loves going on picnics too. It is also a way we save money while on vacations. This year when we went to Omaha we had picnics on the tables outside of the Omaha Children's Museum, at Heartland of America Park, and in the Henry Doorly Zoo parking lot ;)


Monday 18th of September 2017

I hear you about planning picnics when on traveling! I look for parks on our routes, too, and try to plan for picnics.

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