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A Fond Farewell to the Omaha Summer Arts Festival: A Celebration of 50 Years

As the city of Omaha gears up for another vibrant weekend, there is a bittersweet note in the air. This weekend marks the grand finale of the beloved Omaha Summer Arts Festival (OSAF), a cherished event that has brought art, music, and community together for the past 50 years. The festival’s 50th anniversary will be its last, making this final hurrah a must-attend event for residents and visitors alike.

The Legacy of OSAF

Since its inception, the Omaha Summer Arts Festival has been a beacon of creativity and community spirit. Over the decades, it has showcased the talents of thousands of artists, musicians, and performers, transforming Omaha into a bustling hub of artistic expression every summer. This year, the festival promises to be a fitting send-off, with an impressive lineup of events that reflect its rich history and enduring appeal.

A Celebration of Art and Music

The 50th Annual Omaha Summer Arts Festival will take place from June 7th to June 9th at Aksarben Village, located at 67th and Center streets. The festival will feature over 120 professional visual artists from 19 different states, displaying their work in 14 different mediums. From traditional 2D categories like painting and photography to intricate 3D works in glass, wood, and ceramics, there will be something to captivate every art lover.

In addition to the visual arts, the festival will also host a series of free concerts, making it a paradise for music enthusiasts. The lineup is packed with talent, ensuring that each day is filled with memorable performances that span various genres. Whether you’re a fan of rock, jazz, or pop, the OSAF’s final music stage promises an unforgettable experience.

Event Details

What: 50th Annual Omaha Summer Arts Festival
When: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, June 7; 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, June 8; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, June 9
Where: Aksarben Village, 67th and Center streets
Web: summerarts.org

Star-Studded Weekend Performances

As the OSAF bids farewell, Omaha’s entertainment scene will be buzzing with other notable performances.

Lionel Richie with Earth, Wind & Fire

On Sunday, June 9th, pop icon Lionel Richie will grace the stage at the CHI Health Center Omaha, accompanied by the legendary band Earth, Wind & Fire. Known for his catchy tunes and soulful ballads, Richie’s performance is expected to be a highlight of the weekend. Fans can look forward to singing along to hits like “Dancing on the Ceiling” and “Hello,” while Earth, Wind & Fire’s smooth grooves set the perfect backdrop for an evening of musical nostalgia.

What: Lionel Richie, with Earth, Wind & Fire
When: 7:30 p.m. Sunday, June 9
Where: CHI Health Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
Tickets: Start at $21
Web: ticketmaster.com

Tim McGraw with Carly Pearce

Country music fans are in for a treat with Tim McGraw’s concert at the CHI Health Center on Friday, June 7th. McGraw’s “Standing Room Only Tour” promises a night of heartfelt country music, featuring hits like “Don’t Take the Girl” and “Humble and Kind.” Opening for McGraw is Carly Pearce, whose new album “hummingbird” drops the same day.

What: Tim McGraw, with Carly Pearce
When: 7 p.m. Friday, June 7
Where: CHI Health Center Omaha, 455 N. 10th St.
Tickets: Start at $30.50
Web: ticketmaster.com

Excitement at Werner Park

The Omaha Storm Chasers are bringing a week full of fun to Werner Park, starting with “Wild Kingdom Night” on Friday, June 7th. Celebrating the Mutual of Omaha’s show now airing on NBC, the event will feature live animals and fireworks. On Saturday, June 8th, it’s “Runza Night,” complete with special themed jerseys and a giveaway of Runza Sun Hats to the first 1,250 fans.

What: Omaha Storm Chasers vs. Memphis Redbirds
When: 7:05 p.m. Thursday and Friday, June 6 and 7; 6:05 p.m. Saturday, June 8; 5:05 p.m. Sunday, June 9
Where: Werner Park, 12356 Ballpark Way, Papillion
Tickets: Start at $3
Web: omahastormchasers.com

Sebastian Bach at Bourbon Theatre

For rock fans, Sebastian Bach’s performance at the Bourbon Theatre in Lincoln on Wednesday, June 12th, is not to be missed. The former Skid Row frontman will be performing as part of his “What Do I Got to Lose” tour. Fans are advised to leave their Skid Row shirts at home, but to bring plenty of energy for a night of classic ‘80s-style rock.

What: Sebastian Bach
When: 7:45 p.m. Wednesday, June 12
Where: Bourbon Theatre, 1415 O St., Lincoln
Tickets: Start at $30
Web: bourbontheatre.com

A Prince Celebration at The Granary

Prince fans can celebrate what would have been the artist’s 66th birthday at the “Let’s Go Crazy” party on Friday, June 7th, at The Granary in Ralston. The event will feature non-stop Prince videos, ‘80s-themed swag bags, and specialty drinks inspired by the Purple One.

What: “Let’s Go Crazy” Party Celebrating Prince’s Birthday
When: 6 p.m. Friday, June 7
Where: The Granary, 7401 Main Street, Ralston
Tickets: $6.60 in advance, $10 at the door
Web: carrproductionsinc.com

Goose at Steelhouse Omaha

For those seeking a relaxed, jam-band vibe, Goose will perform at Steelhouse Omaha on Monday, June 10th. Known for their improvisational style and energetic performances, Goose is a must-see for fans of bands like Phish and the String Cheese Incident.

What: An Evening with Goose
When: 7:30 p.m. Monday, June 10
Where: Steelhouse Omaha, 11th and Dodge streets
Tickets: Start at $35
Web: ticketmaster.com

Wrapping Up

As Omaha bids farewell to the Omaha Summer Arts Festival, the city is alive with a plethora of exciting events. From Lionel Richie and Tim McGraw to baseball games and rock concerts, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Make sure to soak in the vibrant culture and community spirit that make Omaha a unique and lively city.

For more details on these events and others happening around Omaha, be sure to check out this week’s edition of the Dispatch. And remember, a small act of kindness can make a big difference. Enjoy the weekend, Omaha!

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