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Nebraska Springs into View

Beyond the standard beauty of blossoming flowers, bluer skies, and life in bloom, Nebraska offers uniquely inspiring sights at Winter’s end. We’ve compiled a list of must see spots to help you ring in the Spring!

The Spectacle of the Sandhills

Nebraska’s Platte River is the home of the largest migration of cranes on earth. More than 80% of the world’s crane population converges upon the narrow slip of endangered wildlife habitat. Sandhill and Whooping cranes have taken their repose here for centuries, stopping to rest, court, and refuel before continuing on to their breeding grounds in Canada and Alaska. These cranes will restore up to 10% of their body weight during this stop, enjoying the waste grain from local crop fields.

The cranes don’t make this journey alone, and until early April, you can witness millions of birds taking their repose in the breathtaking Platte River Valley.

In honor of the migration, The Museum of Nebraska Art will showcase works inspired by the migration in their series Cranes: Taking Flight. The exhibit runs until May 13th

Cranes: Taking Flight | 2401 Central Ave, Kearney

February 17 – May 13, 2018

First Sight

Enjoy an evening with UNMC’s Nizar Mamdani on Thursday, March 29 from 7 – 8 PM at KANEKO. Nizar and his wife, Dr. Marsha Mamdani will host an open dialogue about their non-profit, First Sight. The purpose of the organization is to bring sight to developing areas lacking in ocular medicine and vision care. Their mission is to restore vision, thus restoring education opportunities, well-being, and quality of life to those who have, until now, been denied access to vision care.

Great Minds Series at KANEKO | 1111 Jones St, Omaha, NE | March 29, 7PM

Register for this free event, sponsored by ilumin

Metamorphosis: From Reclaimed Plastic to Works of Art

As we approach Earth Day, our environmental impact is on our minds more than ever. Lauritzen Gardens’ latest exhibit has truly embraced the waste, using found and recycled plastic to produce awe-inspiring works of heart. The artists, Sayaka Ganz and Aurora Robson, hope not to shame plastic users, but to create value from the resources already available. Ganz believes that if these items are shown in new, beautiful, and reimagined ways, we will respect them more and waste less.

Metamorphosis: From Reclaimed Plastic to Works of Art

Lauritzen Gardens and Kenefick Park | 100 Bancroft St | Through 5/13

Family Affair

The Omaha Children’s Museum hosts revolving exhibits, and until April 15th you and your children can visit the Forever Forest. Learn about different creatures and their natural habitat, deforestation, and conservation. Enjoy the nature themed indoor jungle gym, waterway exploration, and Camp Cottonwood! Access is free with your museum membership, or with a day pass.

Omaha Children’s Museum | 500 S 20th st, Omaha | Through 4/15

SUP – Stand Up Paddleboarding

As Spring warms your winter bones, your outdoor activities might become a bit more… daring! Try a paddleboard tour with Driftwood Paddleboard Adventures. Schedule a tour of any of Omaha’s beautiful lakes and waterways for yourself, a date, or a group of friends! A whole body workout while enjoying the sights of Standing Bear, or a sunset date as you sail across Zorinsky, whatever floats your boat… er.. paddle board!

Driftwood Paddleboard Adventures | Spring/Summer/Fall

Drift Away

If stand-up paddleboarding isn’t for you, or if you are looking for similar sights without the work, try tanking down the Elkhorn! Tanks seat up to 4, and drift on their own with no need to paddle or steer. Enjoy a relaxing 4 to 5 hour float down the river. Pack drinks, snacks, and your favorite friends for a day full of sights you’ll never forget!

Tank Down | Elkhorn River | Memorial Day through Labor Day

A Sight for Soar Eyes

Photo: Soaring Wings Vineyard

Since 2001, Soaring Wings Vineyard has been the perfect place for a picnic, an evening away, or a night of acoustic music as the sun sinks low. From a girl’s relaxing night out to a romantic escape, explore the vineyard, enjoy a wine or beer flight, and leave with a keepsake glass and the memory of a night well spent!

Soaring Wings Vineyard | 17111 S 138th, Springfield

Where are your favorite Nebraska Spring sights? Share with us on the ilumin Facebook page! However you feast your eyes this Spring, ilumin wishes you all the health and happiness!