October 10, 2017

Vala’s Scavenger Hunt

A day at Vala’s Pumpkin Patch in Gretna, Neb., is not enough to see and do all the free activities. I’ve tried. There’s plenty to do just walking around and stumbling on fun activities. But, if you’re a regular at Vala’s or a season pass holder, here’s the Vala’s Scavenger Hunt to spice up your next visit.

Vala’s Pumpkin Patch is one of the biggest tourist attractions in the area and it’s only open about 45 days a year!

This scavenger hunt is great for groups. I know this since I did a version of it during a work outing recently. I’ve altered it some, but the fun tasks and hard-to-find items are all the brainchild of two Omaha Children’s Museum colleagues, Amy and Grace. It’s great when you work with such creative people!

Vala’s Scavenger Hunt

This scavenger hunt is specific to Vala’s Pumpkin Patch and the unique things found there, so it won’t work at other pumpkin patches. That said, if you think you know Vala’s, this hunt is going to prove you wrong!

Sure, the Henway Piano is easy to find, but good luck finding everything else on the Vala’s Scavenger Hunt,

Here are a few suggestions for the Vala’s Scavenger Hunt. You don’t have to use these rules, but they helped with our hunt:

– Teams must stick together to complete the scavenger hunt. Splitting up is not allowed.

– Set a time limit. Our time limit was strict, and any team that arrived late was docked 25 points for each minute past the end time. This kept things pretty fair.

– Make sure at least one member on each team has a phone with a lot of storage space for the photos and videos.


Download the Vala’s Scavenger Hunt

Download the scavenger hunt here! This is free to use for personal use. Please do not reshare this on any other site without my permission.


If you go

Vala’s Pumpkin Patch

Where: 12102 S. 180th St., Gretna, Neb.

When: Opened seasonally starting mid-September through Oct. 31, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.



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October 29, 2015

Fun Things To Do In Omaha Oct. 29-Nov. 1

This city celebrates Halloween in a big way. I’ve written a lot about it (see 50+ fun things to do in October list or the zoo’s Spooktacular post for examples of things to do this weekend). I tried to find things to do this weekend that A) I haven’t already mentioned in Thursdays past or B) doesn’t involve wearing a costume. Guys, that’s hard to do this weekend.

It’s all about Halloween these next few days.

So I went with a sport theme, instead.

Here are three fun things to do this weekend in Omaha, and one won’t even require you to wear costume:


Baseballoween Bash


When: Tonight, 5 to 8 p.m.

Where: Werner Park, 12356 Ball Park Way, Papillion, Neb.

Why: It’s FREE and all things Halloween at a baseball field, including trick or treating in the suites and a haunted house.

Who’d like this: All ages; families on a budget; baseball fans; moms who’ve been looking for a reason to dust off their “A League of their Own” costumes


“Football: The Exhibit”


When: Daily through Jan. 3, 2016, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Where: The Strategic Air & Space Museum, 28210 West Park Highway, Ashland, Neb.

Why: Your kids love sports and you simply cannot do one more thing that involves glitter costume makeup.

Who’d like it: Sports fans; families who like SASM who are just looking for a new reason to visit


Lancers vs. Lincoln Stars


Edited Oct. 31, 2015:


When: Saturday, 7:05 p.m. (trunk or treat in the parking lot from 6 to 7 p.m., plus treat stations on the concourse). Note from Kim: I heard from the Lancers that the trick or treating is from 5 to 6 p.m. Get there early!HALLOWEEN 2

Where: Ralston Arena, 7300 Q St.

Why: Combine a big rivalry played out on ice with trick or treating, and the whole family is happy (kinda. You know the kids will complain about not trick or treating the neighborhood, regardless).

Who’d like it: Hockey fans; sporty families; dads who’ve been dying for a chance to dress like Wayne and Garth playing street hockey

Tip: They have costume contests going on that night. 


Need more ideas? Head over to Out with Sprout and check out their calendars for more ideas.


October 21, 2015

Fun Things To Do In Omaha Oct. 23-25

It’s the weekend before Halloween. Could you even consider doing something not Halloween-related? I didn’t think so. Below, you’ll find three spooky and fun things to do in Omaha (or nearby) this weekend.

If you want more ideas, I have a crazy long list of 50+ Fun Things To Do In October. Or head to Out With Sprout – they keep track of a ton of events.

Plus, you can’t forget this weekend are two Spooktaculars you don’t want to miss: The Omaha Zoo’s Spooktacular and Omaha Symphony’s “Symphony Spooktacular.”


Trunk or Treat


When: Friday, 6 to 7:30 p.m.

Where:  Sarpy YMCA, 1111 E. First St., Papillion, Neb.

Why: Most YMCAs have Halloween events planned this weekend, and this one looks like a lot of fun inside and out. All-ages stuff are planned, including a toddler tumbling room, tattoo station, pumpkin blowing, bounce houses, treasure chest,

Who’d like this: Active families; families on a budget; kids of all ages; little ghouls and boys


Kids Concoctions: Zombie Walk

Screen Shot 2015-10-21 at 9.00.49 PM

When: Saturday, 1:30 to 2:30 p.m.

Where: Council Bluffs Public Library, 400 Willow Ave., Council Bluffs, Iowa

Why: Kids love zombies. It’s a fact. At this event, they’ll learn how to make fake blood, scabs and skin.

Who’d like this: Kids in grades kindergarten through sixth grade; zombie hunters



Enchanted Forest

My little Minions on a fall hike at Hitchcock Nature Center one year.

My little Minions on a fall hike at Hitchcock Nature Center one year.

When: Sunday, 1 to 3 p.m.

Where: Hitchcock Nature Center, 27792 Ski Hill Loop, Honey Creek, Iowa

Why: It’s the perfect time of year to visit Hitchcock with the leaves changing. It’s just icing on the Halloween cake that you can hike a themed trail with your costumed kiddos, and enjoy activities like pumpkin carving at the same time.

Who’d like this: Active families; outdoorsy types; kids of all ages



October 15, 2015

Fun Things To Do In Omaha Oct. 16-18

I’m going budget this weekend with my picks: Two freebies and one that’s rather budget-friendly. Hope you like these three fun things to do in Omaha!

“Alice in Wonderland” Family Party


When: Saturday, 10:30 to 11:30 a.m.

Where: Benson Public Library, 6015 Binney St.

Why: Because we’re all a little mad here. And you know “Alice in Wonderland” turned 150 this year, so it’s time to celebrate with a tea party and games. It’s all FREE.

Who’d like this: LIterary fans; Mad Hatters; kids who like dress up; families on a budget


Holland Stages Festival


When: Saturday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. (Kids Zone is from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.)

Where: Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St.

Why: It’s your chance to see tons of performances of all genres for FREE – including aerial dance by BANDALOOP at 1, 2:30 and 4 p.m. (I’m super excited about this!)

Who’d like this: Live music lovers; theater and dance fans; kids of all ages; families on a budget

Disclaimer: My day job is with Omaha Performing Arts, who is putting on this shindig to celebrate the Holland Center’s 10th anniversary. This is not a sponsored post by OPA, all opinions are my own.


Trick or Treat With Animals

When: Saturday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Where: Gifford Farm, 700 Camp Gifford Road, Bellevue, Neb.

Why: You love all things Halloween, but your kid’s a little young for super spooky stuff.

Who’d like this: Kids who love animals; younger trick or treaters

Tip: This one’s not free, it’s $5 per trick or treater (includes hayride); accompanying adults are FREE.

Need more ideas? Check out 40+ Fun Things To Do In October or visit Out With Sprout. You know what else is starting this weekend?! The Omaha Zoo’s Spooktacular! Check out my post about it here.

October 6, 2015

2015 ‘Symphony Spooktacular’ + Giveaway

The Omaha Symphony’s annual “Symphony Spooktacular” is officially my family’s kick off to Halloween each year. Held about a week or so before Halloween , it’s a kid-friendly concert with pre-show activities (such as my kids’ favorite, instrument petting zoo) and orchestra members dressed in goofy costumes.

It’s about an hour-long concert – the perfect length – and once it’s over, kids trick-or-treat in the lobby.

Now how’s that for a symphony outing?

We all enjoy it. The kids get to dress up. We all get to hear good music. It’s a tradition now.

Symphony Spooktacular Logo copy

The 2015 “Symphony Spooktacular” is Sunday, Oct. 25, at the kid-friendly time of 2 p.m.

If you want to go this year, read on for a special giveaway!


What can you expect this year?

Costume contest among the musicians. This is a fun one. You kinda expect professional musicians to be serious, but at this concert (at all family concerts, actually), they let loose and have some fun. My favorites are always the group costumes.

Special guests. In past shows, we saw martial arts students perform, a magician, “Star Wars” characters and more!

Surprises. There’s always a surprise.


If you go

“Symphony Spooktacular”

When: Sunday, Oct. 25, 2 p.m.

Where: Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St.

Cost: $12 (everyone must have a ticket). Get your tickets here

Tip: Seats are general admission, so get there early to snag good seats, then go explore the pre-show activities.



Symphony Spook giveaway


One lucky Oh My! Omaha reader will win a family four-pack of tickets to Omaha Symphony’s “Symphony Spooktacular”! There are three chances to enter:

1. Leave a comment: Tell me what would be the funniest group costume of 2015. What would your family dress up as?

2. Share it on Facebook: Share this post on Facebook. Here’s an example of what you could writer: Enter to win a family four-pack to the Omaha Symphony’s “Symphony Spooktacular”! http://wp.me/p3qlLN-1IV. Once you share it, come back here and post a comment that you did and share the link. Due to privacy settings, I probably won’t be able to see your post, but I trust you guys. Honor system.

3. Share it on Twitter. Tweet this: Enter to win tickets to @omahasymphony Symphony Spootacular via @ohmyomaha http://wp.me/p3qlLN-1IV. Come back here and leave a comment with a link to the tweet.

Please make separate comments so it’s easier for me to track each entry!

Thanks and good luck!

The nitty gritty: Giveaway ends Oct. 18 at 11:59 p.m. Must be 18 years or older to enter. Winner will be randomly drawn using Random.org. Winner will be contacted via email within 48 hours of the end of the giveaway, and will have 48 hours to respond to receive details on how to get the tickets.


Disclaimer: Thanks to the Omaha Symphony for providing the family four-pack of tickets for this giveaway. The Omaha Symphony also provided a complimentary four-pack of tickets for my family to attend the “Symphony Spooktacular” as well.  

October 5, 2015

Omaha’s Zoo Spooktacular 2015+ Giveaway

Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium’s Spooktacular is Oct. 17 through Nov. 1 on select nights.

Before you get excited: The animals will not be trick or treating. AND, animals won’t hand out the treats.

I checked.

Photo courtesy Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium

Photo courtesy Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium

Your kids can trick or treat, though. And some people will be dressed up like animals. So, close enough, right?

What is it?

It’s more than trick-or-treating at the zoo, though there’s plenty of that on Treat Street. There are fall-themed games and activities. Lots of photo ops with costumed characters at Storybook Lane.

The dance area at Spooktacular. Photo courtesy Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium

The dance area at Spooktacular. Photo courtesy Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium

And, of course, animals.

We’ve always wanted to go to Omaha’s zoo Spooktacular, and I’ve got it on my calendar to finally get there. Thank you so much to the zoo for inviting my family! It’s going to be a memorable night!

An animal ambassador at the Zoo Spooktacular. Photo courtesy Omaha's Henry Dooryly Zoo & Aquarium

An animal ambassador at the Zoo Spooktacular. Photo courtesy Omaha’s Henry Dooryly Zoo & Aquarium

How about you? Want to go?


Head over to the Oh My! Omaha Facebook page for details on how to win! One person will win a family four-pack of passes to the 2015 Spooktacular. Facebook giveaway will end Wednesday, Oct. 7 at 11:59 p.m.

Want a second chance to win? One Oh My! Omaha subscriber will be randomly drawn to win a family four-pack to the Spooktacular as well! I’ll draw one name on Thursday, Oct. 15, after the weekly email has been sent out.

You don’t get my weekly email? Just click this link and sign up for FREE.

If you go


Spooktacular fun in front of the Desert Dome. Photo courtesy Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium

Spooktacular fun in front of the Desert Dome. Photo courtesy Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium



When: Oct. 17, 18, 23, 24, 25, 30, 31 and Nov. 1 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Where: Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium, 3701 S. 10th St.

Cost: $7 for zoo members and $8 for non-members.



Disclaimer: Giveaway on Facebook ends Oct. 7, 2015. Giveaway for subscribers ends Oct. 15, 2015. Must be 18 or older to enter and a U.S. resident. Prize is valued at $32. One winner’s name will be randomly chosen using Random.org for the giveaway on Facebook (not associated or endorsed with Facebook). One name from the Oh My! Omaha subscriber list will be randomly selected using Random.org. Winners will be contacted via email within 24 hours of the end of the giveaway. Winners will have 48 hours to respond before another name is drawn. Good luck!