I have mentioned before that I travel to Omaha, Nebraska once a month for work. This year I am spending much more time than normal in this chilly town so the Mr and I have rented a small apartment for a few months. The apartment is nice as apartments go, but it’s best feature is its location, just 10 minutes from work and in a great new mixed use development called AK-SAR-BEN village.
If you lived in the center of the country in the 1980’s you probably would have heard of AK-SAR-BEN race track in Omaha (AK-SAR-BEN is Nebraska spelled backwards). Built in 1919 for thoroughbred horse racing, on it’s busiest weekend days it would host up to 25,000 people betting up to $2 million dollars per day. The racetrack closed in 1995 like many in the country when casinos and other forms of entertainment began showing up.
Since that time, the race track and an accompanying arena have been demolished. A large portion of the land was donated to the University of Nebraska – Omaha campus and the rest is being developed into a great area encompassing businesses, apartments, retail stores, a cinema and food and drink establishments.
There is also a nice park that includes an outdoor ampitheatre, walking trails, benches and a children’s play area. At night the tower is lite up with hundreds of light. I am not sure if this is a seasonal thing or if the lights stay on all year.
Also n the park there is a monument to “Omaha” the 1935 Triple Crown winner, who retired to a farm close by and made promotional appearances at the race track in the 1950’s. Upon his death in 1959, Omaha was buried in the race track’s Circle of Champions.
Last weekend we walked and walked and walked all over this little village. I love the idea of having entertainment and restaurants within walking distance. We ate lunch at an interesting place called VooDoo Tacos where Dave tried the alligator selection. I was not quite that brave.
I kept eyeing the Jones cupcake store next door, but somehow managed to walk away.
We then stopped by the cinema and watched “American Sniper.” What a great movie that was! It was a fun afternoon on an unusually warm January day and an easy way to get 10,000 steps on my fitbit!