Enjoying the vast attractions of the local area doesn't have to be pricey. In fact, our residents often can dabble in their favorite hobbies as well as try their hand at new ones without ever cracking open their wallets.
While it's just a sampling of everything the Gateway to the West has to offer, here are 12 activities and services that older adults can explore.
Just one of the Omaha Public Library's frequent events, this storytime program runs until late fall, stopping at beautiful and engaging venues such as the Lauritzen Gardens, Standing Bear Lake and Elkhorn Fire Station. Perfect for an outing with young grandchildren, the activities are designed to accommodate preschoolers. However, the community event is open to all ages so seniors can freely enjoy the atmosphere with their families.
One of the best examples of multigenerational creations, the IGO is a harmonious blend of musicians aged 25 and younger or aged 50 and over. The group primarily plays for senior groups, nursing homes, schools or conferences. But they also hold an annual spring fundraiser concert each year and encourage interested individuals to audition for a spot in the orchestra.
The Omaha farmers markets in Old Market and Aksarben Village are a nearly century-old tradition. Older adults have the opportunity to walk around in a lively social scene and view numerous offerings and live demonstrations from local shops. Pets are welcome, and entertainment is provided.
A weekly volunteer-run event is also available at the Gifford Park Neighborhood Market. With plenty of music, children's entertainment and food trucks, seniors may want to add this market to their list of family outings.
Whether they opt to join a drop-in game or a league, pickleball enthusiasts will find continual activities around Omaha. Eight community and senior centers offer multiple games throughout the week, and the organizations waive the fee for seniors aged 55 and over.
Residents here in Hickory Villa know that personal fitness is more than just maintaining a healthy weight. It's vital for heart and lung health, mobility and combating memory loss. Water aerobics is suitable for a wide range of abilities, giving seniors a great way to invite their loved ones to join them in exercising for better health.
The Millard Senior Center hosts a sewing club for interested seniors. Participating in the center's activities is free of membership charges, letting stitchers gather with like-minded crafters. The organization also plans sewing-themed volunteer activities where participants create sundresses and shorts for the Orphan Grain Train, which delivers them to impoverished children around the world.
No fees or age limits restrict access to the chess club provided by Camelot Community Center. Chess lovers and beginners are both welcome to drop by and participate.
Hosted by the Granary Green, this event offers seniors an engaging evening filled with car cruises and live music. Food and drinks are on-site. Bocce league play is available, letting seniors test their skills or kick back and watch the festivities.
Multiple outdoor concert series are held each summer around Omaha. Listening to music while fellowshipping with family and friends in the great outdoors is an uplifting way to spend an evening. The extensive list of performers makes it easy to cater to a variety of tastes, ensuring seniors and their loved ones can find an irresistible day to hang out during the summer.
Concerts aren't limited to just the summer months in Omaha. Our hometown is renowned for its indie music scene, featuring artists of nearly every genre regularly appearing at one of the many venues in the area. Examples include Gallery 1516 sponsoring Bagels & Sometimes Bach and the Blackstone District 2nd Saturdays offering musical performances.
The Fontenelle Family Fishing Frenzy gives seniors the opportunity to give the sport a whirl without acquiring equipment, and volunteers are on hand to guide beginners through the process. Because licenses and permits aren't necessary, the event lets seniors spend time forming bonds with younger generations of the family while having fun in the great outdoors.
Funded by the AARP Nebraska, Cyber Seniors is an open event for older adults held every Wednesday at the Do Space. Instead of traditional classes, seniors are taught one-on-one by other seniors who understand personally the challenge of adapting to the rapidly changing tech scene. Learning should never stop at any age, and these lessons are self-chosen, giving older adults the ability to use the time to answer their specific questions and needs.