The German American Society had established high school student exchanges between Omaha and Braunschweig in 1986 and wished to “formalize” the relationship. Braunschweig was officially established as a sister city in 1992. Its population is over 250,000 and lies on the northern edge of the Harz Mountains.
As one of Germany’s most important industrial areas, it offers a perfect environment for international companies. According to statistics, it is Europe’s most active research and development region with over 27,000 people are employed in research and development and 7.1 percent of the gross domestic product is invested in research, which puts Braunschweig ahead of Silicon Valley.
Allied bombing destroyed 47% of the built up area of the city during World War II. The Anglo-American air raid on October 15, 1944 destroyed most of the city’s churches, and the Altstadt (old town), the largest homogeneous ensemble of half-timbered houses in Germany. In the 1990s, efforts increased to reconstruct historic buildings that had been destroyed in the air raid.
Learn more at: OmahaSisterCities.com
Omaha’s Downtown is much more than the Old Market District. Our downtown is a vibrant part of the city where people live, work and have fun. The area is generally thought of as 20th Street east to the river then Leavenworth to the south and Chicago to the north. It includes the Old Market, NoDo, Riverfront, Gene Leahey Mall and the former Jobbers Canyon.
Many corporations call Downtown Omaha their home with more moving to Omaha each year. Union Pacific Railroad has had its headquarters here since 1862. First National Bank, Gallup and Woodmen Life are also corporate anchors here.
Our Downtown lets you spend a day shopping with highlights in the Old Market and NoDo districts. You can spend an cultural evening at the Orpheum Theater or the Holland Center. The fine restaurants in the area have multiplied in recent years to areas outside the Old Market. A big change has been the increase of quality craft cocktails including our own speakeasy. Enjoy a beautiful day outside walking through the picturesque Gene Leahey Mall and then toward the river passing by Heartland of American Park.
The Downtown District is clean, growing and a great place to discover new places. Join a Nebraska Tour Company tour to learn more about the food and cocktails Downtown>
photo courtesy of omaha.com
Jobbers Canyon Historic District was a large industrial and warehouse area comprising 24 buildings located in just to the east of the Old Market in Downtown Omaha. It was roughly bound by Farnam Street on the north, South Eighth Street on the east, Jackson Street on the south, and South Tenth Street on the west. In 1989, all 24 buildings in Jobbers Canyon were demolished, representing the largest National Register historic district lost to date. This decision was allowed by the courts to create the space for the ConAgra campus along the river. At the time Omaha’s then-planning director, Marty Shukert, said it was more important to keep the city’s downtown core healthy than to keep the historic district.”
The development of Jobber’s Canyon mirrored Omaha’s emergence as a central hub in the United States transportation system of the late 19th century and early 20th century. As the “Gateway to the West” serving several historic trails the Canyon housed several warehouses, grocers, and other dry goods outfitters for merchants throughout the Old West, particularly those along the Great Platte River Road. Railroad entrepreneurs, land speculators, and merchants built Jobbers Canyon from the 1870s onward. After George Francis Train landed the Union Pacific and Credit Foncier of America in Omaha, the city quickly turned into a transportation hub. Fruit and vegetable wholesalers, meatpackers, and all sorts of supply people created a range of businesses, building almost 24 densely congested buildings in a seven-block by three-block area in downtown Omaha. At its peak, Jobbers Canyon had more than 1,700,000 square feet (160,000 m2) of office, warehouse, industrial and shipping space.
Jillian McClenahan is the founder of The Anastasia Co. She offers encouraging wall art, greeting cards, and journals. Our high-quality paper goods are printed in Omaha, Nebraska. I believe words are powerful. They write the story of your life and shape your perspective. My passion is to design words in a way that resonate with your heart, fill your soul with truth, and bring joy to your home.
Visit her at TheAnastasiaCo.com
Matt Boshart is a guy who loves people, conversations, and coffee. In early 2015, he started Reboot Roasting with the goal of roasting fantastic specialty grade coffee, meeting lots of awesome people, and being the most approachable coffee roaster around.
Matt says, “I’m what most people would call a bit of a nerd. The subject? It doesn’t really matter. I find a way to get in there, root around, and really geek it up.” Take his coffee roasting, for example. About 6 years ago he said “I like coffee….I should build a coffee roaster!” And he did — the love child of a popcorn popper and a convection oven. The first time he fired it up (and burned the living daylights out of the beans) I knew I was in love. Fast forward several years and his dream is reality.
Nancy K Smith is a ceramic artist living in Omaha, Nebraska. She makes handmade artwork in her home studio in the burbs near a beautiful lake. She lives in a cookie cutter house with eclectic decor and a pine tree bordered backyard with her husband Jeff and a corgi named Gibby.
Nancy designs and builds by hand, slab built and pinched ceramics with a rustic modern aesthetic inspired by the color palettes and textures of nature. The ceramics are unique and beautiful functional and sculptural.
The Green House is a local artisan business operated by Christina Mainelli, an Omaha native. She went to college at UNL where she studied English and art, specifically printmaking and book arts. Christina started a small business in 2013 making leather bound journals and leather wallets. She became increasingly fascinated with plants and soon her apartment was overwhelmed with greenery. She began looking for new ways to incorporate her love of plants into my business and found macrame. At one point she had so many plants, the only way to go was up so she constructed what would be the first plant hangers of The Green House Omaha.
Now her fans can find a variety of goods and services to bring green in to their lives. From macrame backdrops and floral installations for weddings and events, to interior plant installations and macrame workshops, Christina strives to bring you the most unique pieces for your home, garden or event. You can find her at a variety of pop-up events in the Omaha area throughout the year, and am excited to offer macrame plant hangers and wall hangings year round at the Omaha Market!
Visit her at TheGreenhouseOmaha.com
The first of Omaha’s sister cities, Shizuoka, Japan, was established in 1965 by leading Omaha businessmen who saw the importance of establishing international connections and cultural education for Omaha and its citizens. It’s population is over 470,000 and is located an hour south of Tokyo by bullet train.
Shizuoka City is the capital and nucleus of a broad urban area located in Shizuoka Prefecture. It is also the economic, political, information, education and cultural center of the region and is known for its agricultural crops of green tea, tangerines and strawberries.
The city’s name is made up of two kanji, shizu, meaning “still” or “calm”; and oka, meaning “hill.” In 2003, Shizuoka merged with Shimizu City, briefly becoming the largest city by land area in Japan. In 2005, it became one of Japan’s 19 “designated cities.” Mt. Fuji is Shizuoka’s claim to fame and was recently named as one of the prestigious UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Learn more at: OmahaSisterCities.com
There is no shortage of coffee shops in Omaha recently. However, the Bike Union & Coffee Union makes a difference in our community. I talked with Miah Sommer, the Executive Director, to discover more about the mission at their location at 19th & Dodge. The Union is a nonprofit bike shop and coffeehouse dedicated to providing job skills, life skills, and mentoring to youth aging out of foster care.
Miah explained that the foster care system ends at age 18 which leaves children with no place to live and no help for their future. Without help 39% of those residents become homeless. The children who are accepted to the Union program must commit to 20 hours a week for a year. They use that time to work in the bike and coffee shop, learn financial skills, meditate and build a community together.
We can all help their mission in many ways. We can make this a regular stop for our latte or coffee with 100% of the profits going toward the Union. We can buy new or repair old bikes there so their kids learns skills and all profits go toward their mission. We can donate bikes to the Union that they can repair/resell or use for parts.
Take time to spend some time in the unique round building and have a coffee while you look at the bikes for sale. Relax at the tables and couches. Make a difference in our community one cup at a time.
This coffee project is featured on the Nebraska Tour Company top coffee shop guide>
Ethan Bondelid is an important force in Omaha’s food and cocktail scene. His story starts while he was in college for graphic design. He then opened a studio and art gallery along with a magazine. He is a creative man.
The next step for Ethan was managing for a development company. He started to throw events at clubs and pop ups events.
There was a phase where he did leadership management development and was a partner in a firm. That’s where he learned a lot about leading a team He then decided to leave corporate to get back to return to his creativity.
He opened the House of Loom which brought a mobile party to a physical place. That venue was open for 6 years. Around the same time he opened Berry & Rye, Omaha’s first craft cocktail bar, and Victor Victoria, a upscale salon. Those Old Market venues are still open today.
He continued to open unique venues with epic design themes. Wicked Rabbit, Omaha’s first speakeasy, opened in 2015. Ethan partnered with Paul Kulik to open Via Farina which is a casual Italian eatery in Little Italy. Laka Lono Rum Club is an amazing tiki style island bar in the heart of the Old Market. Read More
The Benson District is a vibrant historic neighborhood in Omaha. Today it attracts all generations from younger residents who enjoy the bar, music and nightlife to all residents enjoying the upcoming dining options. You can discover a lot of local street art murals. The area is centered around Maple and Military.
It is named after Erastus Benson was a land speculator, investor and philanthropist who unsuccessfully ran for Mayor of Omaha in 1906. He was an early investor in marketing Thomas Edison’s inventions, including the phonograph and the Kinetoscope. In 1887, he purchased approximately 900 acres of farm land from Edward Creighton, an Omaha businessman. On May 25, 1917, the city of Omaha, Nebraska annexed the town of Benson. Krug Park was an amusement park located on North 52nd Street in Benson. In 1930 the park was the site of the worst roller coaster accident in the country to that year and in 1940 it was closed.
The Benson community strives to be unique and historic. You won’t find a chain restaurant there. Modern construction is kept to a minimum. It is an area based on Support Local. Read More
The Omaha metro area is on track to hit 1 million residents within the next decade. Streetcars kept our city mobile in the past. A modern streetcar can help us handle our future growth. Now is the time for accurate, information-based conversations about the streetcar. Projects are moving forward and decisions are being made — and when the streetcar is added to the mix, our city’s future is on the right track.
A streetcar today gets us to an even brighter, bolder future for our city tomorrow.
With a streetcar, we can transform our urban core and strengthen neighborhoods and schools. It can enhance the unique character of midtown and downtown, creating higher density development. And, there are a lot more reasons to Discover Omaha.
A streetcar moves people around an urban core. This strengthens and revitalizes neighborhoods and schools. It enhances the unique character of midtown and downtown, and creates higher density development. It would allow more employers to move back into the area.