What to do with your kids this Summer in Omaha

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Published May 22, 2015

16 fun ideas to try with the kids. From cool upcoming events, to simple ways to enjoy the city during the summer months.


Summer is the best time of the year for kids of any age. School's out and the warmer weather brings all sorts of fun events, possibilities, and activities. There are plenty of things for kids in Omaha to enjoy this summer. Here are just a few options.

The most obvious activity is the Omaha Zoo, which has been named the best zoo in the country for many years in a row. The zoo has hundreds of world class exhibits, hands on activities, and even summer day camps for kids.

Located just south of Omaha in Bellevue, Fontenelle Forest features numerous hiking trails and nature experiences. For kids ages 12 and under, the forest also has an indoor program on Wednesday and Friday from 9:30-11:30am that includes crafts, hands on learning activities, painting, snacks and more.

For children who love nature, colors, and wandering, Lauritzen Gardens is a great place to run off energy and explore. You can see a Rose Garden, a real running mini-train set complete with buildings, herb gardens and more. Don't forget to spend time viewing the life size trains just outside the gardens.

Spend a day at the Durham Heritage Museum. This museum features traveling exhibits that vary, but children love exploring the stationary trains in the basement of the museum, among other things.

The Joslyn Art Museum has numerous interesting exhibits, but during the summer months, they have a special program for kids on Fridays called Art Adventure. This program runs from 10:30-11:30 and features various types of art for children of all ages.

Metropolitan Community College runs several College for Kids programs throughout the Omaha area at various local elementary schools. Kids from ages 5 and up can choose classes such as sculptures, baking, wizards in training, outdoor games and many more. Children have fun and learn all at once.

The Omaha metro area features a number of YMCA's and they all have summer programs for kids. These programs include day camps, classes like swimming, martial arts and more. Kids can meet up with friends and enjoy some summer fun at the Y.

Keep them actively reading and visit local libraries. There are many libraries in the area and many of them do summer reading programs. The library in Bellevue, Nebraska runs a summer reading program starting the week after Memorial day and going halfway through July. You will find actvities like puppet shows, superhero nights, smores and reading combinations and plenty more and it's all free.

A favorite of kids in a range of ages is the downtown Children's Museum. The museum has a different exhibit upstairs every few months and the main level remains mostly the same. With big slides, play houses, a grocery store, craft areas, and a large ball range, there's always plenty to do at the museum. The musem also often has special events like parades and even features summer day camps in a range of styles.

Cool down at one of the many Splash Parks. There are a variety of splash parks and pads in the Omaha region for kids to enjoy when the weather gets hot and sticky. A few includ Benson Park, Orchard Park, and Westwood Heights Sprayground. There are also parks in Papillion as well as one at the Shadow Lake Town Center. Most start spraying water around noon and turn the jets off about 8pm.

For indoor fun of any kind, the Family Fun Center is the place to go. Whether the kids like mini-golf, arcade games, laser tag or paintless paintball, you can find something for everyone at this large activity center.

When the kids get tired of the standard pool, there's always the indoor CoCo Key Water Resort. You don't have to worry about sunscreen and the kids have slides and water activities to last them all day long.

For outdoor water fun, FunPlex is the place to go. The park has a lazy river, go-carts, roller coasters, mini-golf, water slides, pools and enough to entertain kids for days on end.

If the kids have too much energy to spare, take them to SkyZone for a few hours and let them bounce all of that energy away. SkyZone features a room full of trampolines, any kid's biggest dream.

If your kids love pizza, rides, arcade games and more, the Amazing Pizza Machine is the perfect location for an afternoon of fun. You can get the all you can eat buffet and combine it with tokens and entertain and feed everyone with ease.

For sport loving children, the Omaha Storm Chasers, who play in Papillion, have a full schedule of games throughout the summer months.

These are just a few of the many activities children can enjoy over the summer months in Omaha!

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Joelle Blaikie

Written by Joelle Blaikie



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