November 1, 2017

Ultimate Omaha Holiday Events List

Omaha is the best place for a family to celebrate Christmas and New Year’s Eve in 2017. 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!

 

 

Holiday Decor 

When: Nov. 4 through Jan. 7; 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

 

“A Christmas Story” Screening

When: Nov. 10, 7 p.m.

Where: Joslyn Art Museum, Witherspoon Hall, 2200 Dodge St.

What: See a screening of the movie with special guests, Scott Schwartz (Flick in the movie) and Zack Ward (Scut Farkus). They’ll take pictures with you and sign autographs.

Cost: $24

 

Neighborhood Toy Store Day

When: Nov. 11, 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

 

Holiday at Hogwarts

When: Nov. 11, noon to 3 p.m.

Where: Fontenelle Forest, 1111 N. Bellevue Blvd., Bellevue, Neb.

What: A Harry Potter-themed event with an owlery, forbidden forest, and costume parade.

Cost: $15, general admission; $5, members; and FREE for kids 2 & under

 

Winterfest: Annual Bayliss Park Holiday Lighting 

When: Nov. 16, 6 to 8 p.m.

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

What: An outdoor lighting ceremony.

Cost: FREE

 

Project Reindeer at the Union Pacific Museum

When: Nov. 16, 6 to 8 p.m.

Where: Union Pacific Railroad Museum, 200 Pearl St., Council Bluffs, Iowa

What: Meet two of Santa’s backup reindeers.

Cost: FREE

 

Trans-Siberian Orchestra

When: Nov. 16, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Mid-America Center, 1 Arena Way, Council Bluffs, Iowa

What: Part rock concert, part light show, and a good dose of Christmas spirit.

Cost: $42-$67

 

“A Tale of Two Dickens”

When: Nov. 17 and 18; performances are Friday at 3 p.m. (tea is at 2) and at 7 p.m. (cocktails at 6), and Saturday at 10:30 a.m. (beverages at 10) and 3:30 p.m. (tea at 2:30)

Where: The Field Club of Omaha, 3615 Woolworth Ave., except for the Friday evening performance which is at General Crook House Museum, 5730 N. 30th St.

What: Gerald Charles Dickens, the great-great-grandson of Charles Dickens, will portray Dickens characters in performances of “A Chance Encounter with Mr. Dickens” (Friday at Field Club at 2 p.m. and Saturday at Field Club at 10:30 a.m.); “A Tale of Two Cities” (Friday at Crook House at 7:30 p.m.); and “A Christmas Carol” (at Field Club Saturday at 3:30 p.m.). The Madrigali et. al. singers will perform traditional Christmas songs during the cocktail hour prior to the performance of “A Tale of Two Cities.”

Cost: Tickets to “A Chance Encounter with Mr. Dickens” Friday at 3 p.m. are $37 for Douglas County Historical Society members and $40 for non-members; “A Tale of Two Cities” tickets are $75 on Friday at 7 p.m.; “A Chance Encounter with Mr. Dickens” on Saturday at 10:30 a.m. is $40 for members with a mimosa, $25 for members with a non-alcoholic drink, $35 for non-member with a mimosa, and $30 for a non-member with a non-alcoholic drink; tickets to “A Christmas Carol” are $37 for a member and $40 for non-member.

 

“It’s A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play”

When: Nov. 17-19; performances are Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m.

Where: Suckau Memorial Chapel, 840 Pine St.

What: Grace University Theatre Department will present this production.

Cost: $7, general admission, and $10, preferred seating

 

“A Christmas Carol”

When: Nov. 17 though Dec. 23; performances are Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2 and 6:30 p.m., and Wednesday performances on Nov. 29, Dec. 6, Dec. 13, and Dec. 20 at 7 p.m., and Thursdays, Nov. 30 and Dec. 7, at 7 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

 

Gingerbread House Display at Historic Winter Quarters

When: Nov. 18 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. This year’s theme is “Pioneer’s Christmas.” See pictures from last year’s festival here!

Cost: FREE

 

Gingerbread House Display at Kanesville Tabernacle

When: Nov. 18 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. This year’s theme is “Pioneer’s Christmas.”

Cost: FREE

 

Holly Jolly Boutique

When: Nov. 18, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: il Palazzo, 5110 N. 132nd St.

What: A holiday boutique featuring homemade goods from local artisans.

Cost: FREE

 

Bench: MADE Holiday 2017

When: Nov. 18, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: MIDCO Warehouse, 1141 N. 11th St.

What: More than 50 craftsmen and vendors from around the region will showcase and sell their goods.

Cost: FREE

 

Milk and Cookies With Santa

When: Nov. 18, 11 a.m. to noon

Where: Westroads Mall Von Maur Court, 10000 California St.

What: Enjoy milk or OJ and a cookie, and then Santa will arrive, greet the children and read them a story or two. Then, the children will line up and help him walk through the magic doors to his chair to start the holiday season.

Cost: FREE

 

“A Charlie Brown Christmas Live on Stage!”

When: Nov. 18, 1 and 4 p.m.

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

What: A live version of Charlie Brown Christmas.

Cost: $20-$56

 

“Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite”

When: Nov. 19, 2 p.m.

Where: Joslyn Art Museum, 2200 Dodge St.

What: Omaha Symphony members will perform music from “Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite”

Cost: $33

 

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. 23 through Jan. 1, 2018, 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. 23, 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. 24 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 $12 for ages 2+, $11 for seniors, and FREE for children younger than 24 months and members

 

Tree Lighting Ceremony

When: Nov. 24, 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. 24 through Jan. 4, 2018 (closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day);

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. 24 through Jan. 7, 2018

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

What: See the region’s largest Christmas tree, the Ethnic Holiday 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 in December, 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. 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.

 

14th Annual Holiday Lighting Ceremony at Village Pointe

When: Nov. 24, 6 p.m.

Where: Village Pointe, 17305 Davenport St.

What: Holiday concert at 6 p.m., Santa parade at 7 p.m., and free carriage rides until 10 p.m.

Cost: FREE

 

Lights of Aksarben

When: Fridays, Nov. 24 through Dec. 15, 6 to 8 p.m.

Where: Aksarben Village, 67th and Center streets

What: Enjoy treats and hot drinks in a heated tent, carriage rides and face painting, and visits from Santa and Mrs. Claus.

Cost: FREE

 

Handmade Omaha Winter Art & Craft Bazaar

When: Nov. 25 and 26, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: Bancroft Street Market, 2702 S. 10th St.

What: Shop locally-made, handmade goods

Cost: FREE

 

Rockbrook Village Holiday Market

When: Nov. 25, noon to 6 p.m.

Where: Rockbrook Village, 10819 Prairie Brook Road

What: Shop local makers and vendors from around the Midwest, enjoy churros and chocolate from Little España, and see Santa (from 2 to 6 p.m.)

Cost: FREE

 

Santa Visit

When: Saturdays, Nov. 25-Dec. 23, and Sundays, Nov. 26-Dec. 17, noon

Where: Hollywood Candy, 1209 Jackson St.

What: Get a picture with Santa and enjoy crafts in the diner.

Cost: FREE

 

Sounds of the Season

When: Saturdays, Nov. 25 through Dec. 23, 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

 

Holiday Poinsettia Show AGLOW

When: Nov. 25 and 26; Dec. 2, 3, 9, 10, 15-23, 26-30; and Jan. 2-3, 5 to 8 p.m.

Where: Lauritzen Gardens, First and Bancroft streets

What: Visit the poinsettia show in the evening to see it in a new light.

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

 

Santa’s Sleigh Ride

When: Nov. 26, 3 to 7 p.m.

Where: La Vista, Neb.

What: Santa will begin his route around La Vista at 3 p.m., leaving from the Santa’s Workshop parking lot at 8305 Parkview Blvd. He will be east of 84th Street from 3-5 p.m. and west of 84th Street from 5-7 p.m. Santa will stop for five minutes at each location designated with a stop sign.

Cost: FREE

 

“Elf” Movie Party

When: Nov. 26, 27 and 29; screenings on Nov. 26 at 6 and 7 p.m., and on Nov. 27 and 29 at 7 p.m.

Where: Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, 12750 Westport Parkway, La Vista, Neb.

What: Screen the movie with  props, a themed contest before the film, and a “real” snowball fight in the theater.

Cost: $12.90 (kids under age 6 are not permitted)

 

Tree Lighting Celebration & Soup Supper

When: Nov. 27, 5:45 p.m. (Santa arrives at 6)

Where: City Hall and Community Center, 8116 Park View Blvd., and Santa’s Workshop, 8305 Park View Blvd.

What:  This annual event includes live entertainment and Santa, followed by a soup supper.

Cost: FREE

 

Holiday Music by George Walker

When: Nov. 30, noon to 1 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Millard branch, 13214 Westwood Lane

What: Free musical performance

Cost: FREE

 

Lights On Dundee

When: Nov. 30, 5 to 7 p.m.

Where: 49th Street to 51st Street along Underwood Avenue

What: Visit local shops for Christmas activities and treats, including Santa at Scout, ornament making at Craft Saloon, and hayrakc rides by Dundee Bank.

Cost: FREE

 

“Cirque Musica Holiday Presents: BELIEVE”

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

Where: CenturyLink Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.

What: An incredible spectacle of performances accompanied by favorite holiday songs performed by a live symphony orchestra.

Cost: $33-$93

 

Elf on the Shelf at Omaha Public Libraries

When: Dec. 1-22

Where: Millard branch and Elkhorn branch

What: Find the Elf on the Shelf each day to win a prize.

Cost: FREE

 

“The Best Christmas Pageant Ever”

When: Dec. 1-23; performances are Fridays at 7 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m., and a 7 p.m. performance on Saturday, Dec. 16

Where: The Rose, 2001 Farnam St.

What: The Herdmans are the worst kids in the history of the world. So, when they crash Sunday school and demand parts in the Christmas pageant, the whole town panics. There’s not supposed to be biting in Bethlehem, and while these kids have never even heard the Christmas story, they definitely have rewrites! Soon everyone from the terrified pint-sized shepherds to the furious church ladies are calling for reluctant director Grace Bradley to cancel the whole thing. It’s up to Grace and the Reverend to help their community see the Christmas story (and the Herdman kids) through new eyes in this hilarious musical adaptation of the funny and touching holiday classic. Good for ages 5+.

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

 

First Friday Family Date Night – Winter Wonder Fun

When: Dec. 1, 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 $12 for ages 2+, $11 for seniors, and FREE for children younger than 24 months and members

 

Ugly Sweater Night with Santa

When: Dec. 1, 5 to 8 p.m.

Where: Westroads Mall Von Maur Court, 10000 California St.

What: Put on your ugliest sweater for Santa. (There are a whole lot of details on this one yet)

Cost: ?

 

Santa Goes To Space

When: Dec. 2, 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)

 

Morning With Santa

When: Dec. 2, 10:30 a.m. to noon

Where: Omaha Public Library Saddlebrook branch, 14850 Laurel Ave.

What: Morning includes storytime with Santa, bounce and playtime in the gym, reindeer food making, writing a letter to Santa, coloring and decorating your own “snow globe,” and more! There will be live holiday music and bananas and bagels for snacks.

Cost: FREE

 

Physicians Mutual and WOWT Holiday Market

When: Dec. 2 and Dec. 3, 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

 

Hot Shops Art Center’s 17th Annual Winter Open House

When: Dec. 2 and 3; hours are Saturday, noon to 8 p.m., and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m.

Where: Hot Shops Art Center, 1301 Nicholas St.

What: View artist studios, demonstrations, and shop the galleries.

Cost: FREE

 

Holiday Open House – Live Piano Music

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

Where: Omaha Public Library Millard Branch, 13214 Westwood Lane

What: Hear piano students perform songs.

Cost: FREE

 

Ballet Nebraska’s “The Nutcracker”

When: Dec. 2 and 3; 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: $27-$87

 

Small Guy Promotions Holiday Fair

When: Dec. 2, 2 to 6 p.m.

Where: Hope Skate, 2200 N. 20th St.

What: Shop local with some of our small businesses and also meet some of the great non-profit organizations in our community.

Cost: FREE

 

Winter Wonderland

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

Where: Fontenelle Forest

What: See the forest after hours to see the holiday lights, meet Santa in the woods, and enjoy s’mores, cocoa and caroling by the fire pits.

Cost: $3 for members, $13 for non-members

 

Breakfast With Santa

When: Dec. 2, 7:30 to 10:30 a.m.

Where: Quaker Steak and Lube, 3320 Mid America Drive, Council Bluffs, Iowa

What: It’s exactly like it sounds! Since it’s a fundraiser, you’ll pay a little extra to get a picture with Santa.

Cost: $5 (photos with Santa are $5 more), benefits Make-A-Wish Iowa

 

Visit Santa’s Workshop

When: Dec. 2, 5, 9 & 16, 9 a.m. to noon, and Dec. 7 & 14, 4 to 7 p.m.; on Dec. 6 from 3 to 5 p.m. school aged kids can write letters

Where: La Vista Falls Clubhouse, 8305 Parkview Blvd., La Vista, Neb.

What: Visit with Santa, decorate cookies, enjoy hot chocolate and explore his workshop! Reindeer will be present on Dec. 7 and 14. Santa will not be present on Dec. 6.

Cost: FREE

 

The Rooftop Rink at Midtown Crossing

When: Dec. 2 through Feb. 25, 2018; hours are

Where: Parking garage near Wohlner’s Neighborhood Grocery & Deli, 3253 Dodge St.

What: Ice skate on a synthetic ice rink on the rooftop of a parking garage.

Cost: $5 donation (includes skates), benefits Salvation Army

 

Holiday Happenings

When: Dec. 2, 9 and 16, 10:30 a.m.

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

What: Catch a glimpse of special holiday characters as they dive into the shark tunnel inside the Suzanne and Walter Scott Aquarium. Enrichment activities for zoo residents throughout the day.

Cost: Free to Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium members or with regular paid Zoo admission.

 

Wizard’s Yule Ball

When: Dec. 2, 6 to 10:30 p.m.

Where: Omaha Comfort Inn & Suites Central, 7007 Grover St.

What: A Harry Potter-themed holiday event.

Cost: $10 for adults, $5 for kids ages 4-10, and children younger than 4 admitted FREE. Adult tickets go up to $15 after Nov. 1. Tickets available here.

 

Wells Fargo Family Festival

When: Dec. 3, noon to 5 p.m.

Where: Wells Fargo Bank, 1919 Douglas St.; Omaha Children’s Museum, 500 S. 20th St.; Omaha Police Mounted Patrol Barn, 615 Leavenworth St.; The Durham Museum, 801 S. 10th St.; W. Dale Clark Library, 215 S. 15th St.; and Joslyn Art Museum, 2200 Dodge St.

What: Each location has special activities planned, or just the opportunity to see exhibits and/or pay. Some locations will have treats or hot cocoa. Trolley rides are available, for free, to each location.

Cost: FREE

Read my Beginners Guide To the Family Festival here!

 

Joyful Noise: A Gospel Christmas featuring Salem Baptist Church

When: Dec. 3, 4 and 7 p.m.

Where: Holland Performing Arts Center, 1200 Douglas St.

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

Cost: $15

 

Lindsey Stirling: Warmer in the Winter Christmas Tour

When: Dec. 4, 8 p.m.

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

What: Lindsey was the “hip-hop violinist” on NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” in 2010.

Cost: $39.50-$269

 

Christmas Creepers and Minecraft Fun

When: Dec. 5, 4 p.m.

Where: La Vista Public Library, 9110 Giles Road, La Vista, Neb.

What: Make Minecraft-related crafts for yourself or to give as gifts. Bring your own handheld device
with Minecraft on it to play at the library.

Cost: FREE

 

Santa Party

When: Dec. 5, 10 a.m. to noon

Where: Omaha Public Library Sorenson branch, 4808 Cass St.

What: Read stories about Santa and his reindeer and making Santa crafts, plus enjoy the gym and bounce house.

Cost: FREE

 

“The Madrigal Christmasse Feaste”

When: Dec. 5-8, 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: $54 per person

 

Crafty Tots Holiday Activities

When: Dec. 6 and 20, 11 a.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Saddlebrook branch, 14850 Laurel Ave.

What: On Dec. 6, make a doily snowman craft and on Dec. 20 make a footprint reindeer. Activities are for children younger than 5 years old. Supplies available for the first 30 children.

Cost: FREE

 

Holiday Under Glass

When: Wednesdays and Fridays, Dec. 6-22, noon

Where: Joslyn Art Musem

What: Holiday concert over the lunch hour.

Cost: FREE

 

Holiday Music

When: Dec. 6, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Millard branch, 13214 Westwood Lane

What: Anita Jaynes will perform holiday favorites on the harp.

Cost: FREE

 

Straight No Chaser: The Speakeasy Tour

When: Dec. 6, 7:30 p.m.

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

What: An a cappella group that will perform holiday and popular tunes.

Cost: $29-$74

 

Pete The Cat Saves Christmas Party

When: Dec. 8, 10 a.m.

Where: La Vista Public Library, 9110 Giles Road, La Vista, Neb.

What: Songs, crafts and Pete the Cat holiday stories

Cost: FREE

 

Holiday PJ Night With Santa

When: Dec. 8, 5 to 8 p.m.

Where: Westroads Mall Von Maur Court, 10000 California St.

What: It’s a PJ party at the North Pole. (There are a whole lot of details on this one yet)

Cost: ?

 

Out & About Storytime at Hy-Vee with Santa

When: Dec. 9, 10 a.m.

Where: Hy-Vee, 15603 West Maple Road

What: Read books, sing a song, and get pictures with Santa.

Cost: FREE

 

Holiday Music 

When: Dec. 9, 10:30 a.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Willa Cather branch,

What: Holiday music performed by Cecilia Jensen

Cost: FREE

 

Holiday Creations, Coffee & Cocktails

When: Dec. 9, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: Hotel RL, 3321 S. 72nd St.

What: Shop and enjoy drinks made at the coffee bar

Cost: FREE

Read my review about Hotel RL and the waterpark here!

 

Library Holiday Open House

When: Dec. 9, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Where: La Vista Public Library, 9110 Giles Road, La Vista, Neb.

What: Holiday music, refreshments and view the library’s doll houses

Cost: FREE

 

Holiday Happening

When: Dec. 9 and 10, noon to 4 p.m.

Where: Lauritzen Gardens, First and Bancroft streets

What: Get pictures with Santa Claus, make a craft, listen to festive carols from local performance groups, tour the Marjorie K. Daugherty Conservatory, enjoy holiday treats in front of the crackling fireplace in the café and walk through the beautiful holiday poinsettia show.

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.

 

 

Boys Town Christmas Family Festival

When: Dec. 9, 1 to 5 p.m.

Where: Boys Town, 137th and West Dodge Road, Boys Town, Neb.

What: The festival around the campus includes craft making, cookie decorating, and meeting Santa and his reindeer.

Cost: FREE

 

Afternoon With Santa

When: Dec. 9, 2 to 3:30 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Florence branch, 2920 Bondesson St.

What: Enjoy a lively telling of the poem “A Visit from St. Nicholas,” sing holiday songs in the Florence Branch’s Meeting Room, get pictures with Santa in the gym, and make crafts and activities. Groups of 5 or more, should call ahead.

Cost: FREE

 

Physicians Mutual Omaha Symphony Christmas Celebration

When: Dec. 9-17; 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: $19-79

 

Holiday at Hogwarts

When: Dec. 9-23; performances are Dec. 9, 14-16, 21-23 at 7:30 p.m. (door opens at 7)

Where: Apollon Art Space, 1801 Vinton St.

What: An interactive performance and dinner.

Cost: $35 and Deluxe Package tickets are $60 and are available here

 

The Hip Hop Nutcracker

When: Dec. 9, 8 p.m.

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

What: A dozen dancers, a DJ and an electric violinist reimagine a holiday classic.

Cost: $20-$60

 

Beer Corner USA Christkindl Holiday Market

When: Dec. 10, noon to 6 p.m.

Where: The Huber Haus German Bier Hall, Farnam St.

What: Shop local vendors and enjoy warm drinks.

Cost: FREE

 

Winter Family Craft

When: Dec. 10, 1:30 to 2:30 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Milton R. Abrahams branch, 5111 N. 90th St.

What: Family crafting activity making holiday decorations

Cost: FREE

 

“How the Grinch Stole Christmas” Screening

When: Dec. 10, 2 to 4 p.m.

Where: Hollywood Candy, 1209 Jackson St.

What: Visit the coolest Old Market candy shop and watch the movie in their small theater. There will be treats available for purchase.

Cost: FREE

 

Light Up Cards Craft

When: Dec. 12, 4:30 to 5:30 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Sorensen branch, 4808 Cass St.

What: Take a lesson in light-up cards using Chibitronics electronic stickers and various other supplies. Registration is required. There’s a session for kids and one for teens.

Cost: FREE

 

Story Time With St. Nick

When: Dec. 13, 10 a.m.

Where: La Vista Public Library, 9110 Giles Road, La Vista, Neb.

What: Sing Christmas songs, listen to Santa read a story and get your picture taken with him! For children ages 5 and younger.

Cost: FREE

 

Holiday Harp Music

When: Dec. 13, 4 to 5 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Abrahams branch, 5111 N. 90th St.

What: Hear holiday music performed by performed by Grace Spath, harpist & singer. Refreshments will be served.

Cost: FREE

 

Supper with Santa

When: December 13-17, 6 to 8 p.m.

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

What: Enjoy a spaghetti dinner, cookie decorating, craft stations, story time, exploring Scott Aquarium and of course pictures with Santa!

Cost: $18 per person for Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium members, $23 for non-members and children 2 and under are FREE. Reservations are required for this all-inclusive event. Reservations will open in December.

 

Holiday Music 

When: Dec. 14, noon to 1 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Millard branch,

What: Joyce Miller’s Bit of Bronze will perform holiday favorites on bells.

Cost: FREE

 

Holiday Craft: Snow Globes & Reindeer Food

When: Dec. 14, 4 to 5 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Elkhorn branch, 2100 Reading Plaza, Elkhorn, Neb.

What: DIY snow globes and reindeer food activity for children in preschool through elementary. Parents should assist their young children.

Cost: FREE

 

Jazz Piano Holiday Music

When: Dec. 15, noon to 2 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library South Omaha branch, 2808 Q St.

What: Enjoy holiday music performed on jazz piano by Robert Glaser.

Cost: FREE

 

Yule Ball Lock-In

When: Dec. 15, 5 to 9 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library, Saddlebrook branch, 14850 Laurel Ave.

What: Come dressed as your favorite witch or wizard (dress robes are optional). Magical food, games, and activities will be available. This event is open to 30 participants, ages 12-18. Registration is required.

Cost: FREE

 

Gingerbread House Making

When: Dec. 16, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library South Omaha branch, 2808 Q St.

What: Build a gingerbread house (all supplies are included at this drop-in event).

Cost: FREE

 

Santa Visits Storytime

When: Dec. 16, 10:30 a.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Washington branch,

What: Sing songs and listen to story time with Santa.

Cost: FREE

 

Ugly Holiday Sweaters

When: Dec. 16, 2 to 4 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Willa Cather branch, 1905 S. 44th St.

What: Make an ugly sweater during this craft time.

Cost: FREE

 

Teen Movie Day & Hot Chocolate Bar

When: Dec. 16, 3 to 5 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Florence branch, 2920 Bondesson St.

What: Vote on a winter movie and enjoy hot chocolate while watching it.

Cost: FREE

 

Milk & Cookies With Santa

When: Dec. 16, 6 to 9 p.m.

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

What: It’s an after-hours special event story time with Santa Claus and an exclusive showing of Santa’s Magic, crafts, milk & hot chocolate bar, cookie and stocking decorating, and unlimited train and carousel rides. Each family gets a free printed picture with Santa, as well.

Cost: $20 per person for members and $35 per person for non-members.

Nebraska Brass Band Christmas Carol Service

When: Dec. 16, 6:30 to 8 p.m.

Where: 2825 Y St.

What: 20 different groups will perform as one to celebrate Christmas.

Cost: FREE with a toy donation

 

Christmas with the Annie Moses Band

When: Dec. 16, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Arts Center at Iowa Western Community College, 2700 College Road, Council Bluffs, Iowa

What: Christmas with the Annie Moses Band stands on the PBS charts as one of the most played specials of the season.

Cost: $29-$39

 

Forever Young Family & Children’s Series “Muppet’s Christmas”

When: Dec. 16, 17 & 21

Where: Film Streams at Ruth Sokolof Theater, 1340 Mike Fahey St.

What: Forever Young is a film series especially for families with low-price kids tickets.

Cost: $10, adults; $7.50, seniors, students, teachers, military; $5, members; $2.50, kids (12 and younger)

 

Sugar Cooking Decorating

When: Dec. 19, 4 p.m.

Where: La Vista Public Library, 9110 Giles Road, La Vista, Neb.

What: Decorate cookies and listen to holiday music! All ages including teens and ‘tweens are invited.

Cost: FREE

 

Holiday Craft Hullabaloo

When: Dec. 19, 4 to 6 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Benson branch, 6015 Binney St.

What: All ages crafting activities with refreshments and music.

Cost: FREE

 

Get Crafty: Holiday Edition

When: Dec. 20, 5 to 6 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library South Omaha branch, 2808 Q St.

What: Create light up holiday cards using Chibitronic LED stickers and make DIY gifts. For ages 8-12.

Cost: FREE

 

Get Crafty: Holiday Craft

When: Dec. 21, 4:30 to 5:30 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Sorensen branch, 4808 Cass St.

What: It’s a holiday-themed family craft time.

Cost: FREE

 

Christmas Colorpalooza

When: Dec. 22, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: La Vista Public Library, 9110 Giles Road, La Vista, Neb.

What: Christmas coloring and doodling sheets for all ages (parental participation required)

Cost: FREE

 

Mannheim Steamroller Christmas

When: December 22 and 23, 7:30 p.m.

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

What: A holiday concert full of multimedia special effects.

Cost: $38.25-$78.25

 

Forever Young Family & Children’s Series “It’s a Wonderful Life”

When: Dec. 23, 24, 25, 28, 30 & 31

Where: Film Streams at Ruth Sokolof Theater, 1340 Mike Fahey St.

What: Forever Young is a film series especially for families with low-price kids tickets.

Cost: $10, adults; $7.50, seniors, students, teachers, military; $5, members; $2.50, kids (12 and younger)

 

Penguins and Pancakes

When: Dec. 26 – 30, 9 to 10:30 a.m.

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

What: Enjoy pancakes from The Pancake Man, crafts and animal visits from the African penguins.

Cost: Member cost is $20 for adults and $15 for children (ages 3-11). Non-member cost is $25 for adults and $20 for children (ages 3-11). Children 2 and under are FREE. Reservations are required. Ticket purchase includes a pancake breakfast, plush penguin toy and admission to the Zoo. Reservations will open in November 2017.

 

Gingerbread Houses

When: Dec. 28, 2 to 3 p.m.

When: Omaha Public Library Washington branch, 2868 Ames Ave.

What: Build a festive “gingerbread” house out of graham crackers, icing, and candy. Registration required; all supplies provided.

Cost: FREE

 

Hogwarts Holiday Lock-In

When: Dec. 29, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Abrahams branch, 5111 N. 90th St.

What: Witches and wizards are encouraged to wear their holiday robes for this night of feasting, questing and camaraderie. This program is limited to 24 attendees and they must be between the ages of 7 and 12. Registration is required and a parental permission slip must be signed.

Cost: FREE

 

Noon Year’s Eve

When: Dec. 30, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

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

What: Celebrate the New Year with a countdown, bubble wrap stomp and a balloon drop.

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.

 

Noon Years Eve

When: Dec. 30, 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Saddlebrook branch, 14850 Laurel Ave.

What: Dance party, reading areas for family reading, gaming in the teen room, bounce and play in the gym, and a 1,000-balloon drop countdown at noon.

Cost: FREE

 

Holiday Nerf Party

When: Dec. 30, 2 to 3:30 p.m.

Where: Omaha Public Library Abrahams branch, 5111 N. 90th St.

What: Holiday-inspired Nerf games, pizza and refreshments. Registration required must be between the ages of 11-15. Limited to 20 attendees.

Cost: FREE

 

Noon Year’s Eve

When: Dec. 31, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

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

What: Entertainment from Joe Cole’s Magic Show, fun activities and an early countdown to 2018 complete with a beach ball drop at noon. Event schedule is as follows: 11:59 a.m. Beach ball drop countdowns begin in the Education and Conference Center in the Scott Aquarium and the Wild Kingdom Pavilion; 12 p.m. Beach balls will drop in the Education and Conference Center in the Scott Aquarium and the Wild Kingdom Pavilion; 12:15 p.m. Joe Cole’s Magic Show in Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom Pavilion Auditorium.

Cost: Free to Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium members or with regular paid Zoo admission.

 

New Year’s Bash

When: Dec. 31, 6 to 8 p.m.

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

What: Celebrate New Year’s Eve with an evening at the children’s museum with face painting and balloon artist. Special activities include making your own cardboard float for the end-of-night parade and fun countdown.

Cost: $15 per person for members and $25 per person for non-members

 

New Year’s Eve Fireworks Spectacular

When: Dec. 31, 7 p.m.

Where: Gene Leahy Mall, 14th and Farnam streets

What: Omaha’s big fireworks display to welcome 2018 happens downtown!

Cost: FREE

 

 

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December 23, 2014

New Year’s Eve In Omaha With Kids

NYE in Omaha

I know! It’s not even Christmas, how dare I write about New Year’s Eve?!

Well, I’m a planner. It’s around the corner.

New Year’s Eve means something a little different when you have kids. It means you can’t stay up too late with the bubbly because kids never sleep in. Never.

Fortunately, there are plenty of places around Omaha that understand our needs. We want to have fun, but we have these kids that depend on us, so our fun has to be in the daytime. And it has to be kid-friendly.

Fun things to do on New Year’s Eve in Omaha with kids

Noon Year’s Eve

When: 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

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

What: Live music, special crafts and activities. Ring in the “noon year” in your handmade party hats while enjoying the celebratory bubble wrap stomp and the spectacular balloon drop at noon in the Suzanne and Walter Scott Great Hall.

Cost: Museum admission is $9, adults; $7, seniors (62+); $6, children (3-12); FREE for members and children 2 years and under

 

Ring In The New Year At Omaha Children’s Museum

When: 10 a.m.to 4 p.m.

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

What: Enjoy New Year’s Eve themed crafts, science shows, dance party and final countdown into the New Year at 3 p.m.

Cost: Museum admission is $9 for adults and kids; $8 for seniors; FREE for members and children under 2.

 

Noon Year’s Eve

When: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

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

What: Entertainment from Joe Cole’s Magic Show, fun activities and an early countdown to 2015 complete with a beach ball drop at noon.

Cost: Zoo admission in the winter is $13.50 for adults (12 and over); $12.50 for seniors (65+) and military adults (12 and over); $9, children (3-11); $8, military child (3-11); FREE for members and children 2 and younger)

 

ConAgra Foods Ice Skating Rink

When: 1 to 5 p.m.

Where: ConAgra Foods Campus, 10th and Harney streets (outdoors)

Cost: $5, includes skate rental (admission is still required for patrons who bring their own skates) and benefits Food Bank for the Heartland. Kids under 5 skate FREE.

 

Family Canvas

When: 3 to 5:30 p.m.

Where: Village Canvas & Cabernet,  6457 Frances St., Suite 180

What: This is a family-friendly paint class where participants paint an upside down snowman. For ages 6+.

Cost: Adults, $35; child (6-14), $25 and includes all supplies

 

Holiday Lights Festival’s New Year’s Eve Fireworks Spectacular

When: 7 p.m.

Where: From Gene Leahy Pedestrian Mall

Cost: FREE

 

And if you still feel like celebrating on New Year’s Day

New Year’s Day fireworks and holiday lights finale

When: Jan. 1, 7:20 p.m. (Holiday Lights Spectacular starts at 7 p.m., fireworks begin immediately after that concludes)

Where: Turner Park at Midtown Crossing, near 33rd and Turner streets

Cost: FREE

 

 

December 24, 2013

New Year’s Eve In Omaha … With Kids

Editor’s Note: For New Year’s Eve 2014 event, head to the current list here!

New Year’s Eve 2013 is around the corner. While younger women are pinning their ideal, sexy NYE outfits and making plans with friends, I’m debating the merits of wearing my Christmas jammies to welcome 2014 or going with something forward looking. Yoga pants?

I’ve given up ever seeing midnight on purpose again. I’m a mom. If I’m out of bed at midnight, it’s because some kid had a nightmare or the cat is batting at a door.

I don’t mind celebrating the New Year as long as the fun ends early. Here’s some things to do on New Year’s Eve in Omaha that are kid-friendly (and more importantly, mom-friendly):

Day Time

Sempeck’s Bowling & Entertainment is open for family fun from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with special prices on activities and bowling.

The Durham Museum will hold a Noon Year’s Eve party from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. for all ages. There will be live music, crafts and activities, culminating with a bubble wrap stomp and ball drop at noon in the Suzanne and Walter Scott Great Hall.

Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium has Noon Year’s Eve festivities planned from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., with a noon countdown.

BounceU is having a Bouncin’ New Year’s from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. It’s a “drop your kids off” kind of deal with pizza, sparkling cider, party hats, noisemakers, and a whole lot of bouncing.

Skate Daze will have a Family NYE Party from 1 to 4 p.m. with games, prizes and a balloon drop.

The ConAgra Ice Skating Rink at 10th and Harney streets is open on New Year’s Eve from 1 to 5 p.m. Admission is $5 and includes skate rental; kids 5 and younger skate FREE. You’re encouraged to bring non-perishable food and household good donations.

Early Evening

First Night Council Bluffs is a wonderful event held from 4:30 to 10 p.m. at several C.B. downtown locations and the Mid America Center Convention Center (kids’ stuff is at the MAC until 8 p.m.). Admission is FREE for 12 and younger, adults pay $10 for all the concerts, activities and magic show.

The Amazing Pizza Machine is open all day with specials, and a New Year’s Eve deal featuring some unlimited stuff going from 5 p.m. to midnight. There will be party favors (while supplies last) and champaign (I’m going out on a limb saying that it’s for you, not your kids – not clear in their flyer).

Omaha Children’s Museum’s First Night of Play is from 6 to 8:30 p.m. The event includes pizza dinner, goodie bag, face painters, balloon artists, dance party and concert by Dino O’Dell. “Midnight” at OCM is at 8 pm, complete with a countdown to the New Year and a giant bubble wrap stomp.

The Holiday Lights Festival’s great big fireworks show downtown starts at 7 p.m. out of Gene Leahy Mall. Show up a little early for primo viewing since this draws a lot of people, and tune your radio to 104.5 for some sweet ‘80s tunes that the fireworks will be timed to.

* * * * *

Friends and family, I wish you all a Merry Everything! Whether you’re celebrating Christmas with loved ones tomorrow or not, may this time of year bring you peace, comfort and optimism.

December 16, 2013

First Night Of Play At Omaha Children’s Museum

I haven’t made New Year’s Eve plans in a few years – four years to be exact, which “coincidentally” is my oldest child’s age. If you have kids with internal alarm clocks set to 6 a.m., staying out until midnight is not a good idea.

So what is a young family to do on New Year’s Eve?

You find a New Year’s Eve party with an early “midnight” and lots for your kids to do.

FNOP-2014Just going to the Omaha Children’s Museum is fun enough for kids, but the staff over there has big plans for partygoers on New Year’s Eve!

First, there’s the entertainment

They’ll have Balloon artists, face painters, a live concert by Dino O’Dell and a dance party.

A lot of activities are planned for New Year's Eve at Omaha Children's Museum.

A lot of activities are planned for New Year’s Eve at Omaha Children’s Museum.

Then, there are the goodies

Chow down on pizza from Dominos and dig through the goodie bags from Oriental Trading Company.

Then, there’s the finale

There’s a countdown at 8 p.m. complete with a bubble wrap stomp (it IS what you think it is… and who can resist bubble wrap?!). There is also a surprise or two in store!

This is one of the most unique ways I see kids being able to make noise and celebrate on New Year's Eve and it looks like so much fun!

This is one of the most unique ways I see kids being able to make noise and celebrate on New Year’s Eve and it looks like so much fun!

It sounds like a fun, safe night for kiddos, right? Don’t wait to get your tickets if this is something you want to do!

What you need to know

When: Tuesday, Dec. 31, 6 to 8:30 p.m.

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

Cost: $14 for non-members, $10 for members, kids 2 and younger are free but still need to be registered. Purchase tickets online.

This post was sponsored by Omaha Children’s Museum. All the opinions written are mine.