Events in Nebraska

Shannon Peterson
| April 27, 2024 | 4 Minute Read
Illustration of landmarks in Nebraska Adam Grason

State fairs, local festivals, rodeos and even a historical reenactment are some of the summer happenings you won’t want to miss in the Cornhusker State.

Travel 200 years back in time and experience the history of the Great Plains at Fort Atkinson State Historical Park in Calhoun. The 157-acre site features a reconstructed log fort marking where the Lewis and Clark Expedition first met the Otoe-Missouria.

While the site is open to the public year-round, special Living History weekends are held 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. the first weekend of the month between May and October for reenactors to portray military personnel, fur traders, coopers, blacksmiths, carpenters, weavers and other tradespeople as they lived in the 1820s.

Calendar of Events

Check out our event calendar to find Nebraska’s best festivals, concerts, sports and more.

Now–May 12
Sharing the Glory: The History of Baseball in Omaha
Revisit the glory days of America’s pastime and Omaha’s history and love of the sport. From the College World Series to Hall of Famer Bob Gibson, discover this home run of an exhibit at the General Crook House Museum.

May 3–5
Shana Farr—Whistling in the Dark
The classically trained singer and award-winning cabaret performer brings her talents to the Brownville Concert Hall in this tribute to Julie Andrews. Farr performs Broadway hits and lesser-known numbers and sprinkles in stories of how Andrews became America’s sweetheart. (For AAA Member-exclusive discounts on concerts and more, visit

May 4–5, 11–12, 18–19
The Renaissance Festival of Nebraska
Mingle with hundreds of costumed characters while munching on a turkey leg at Bellevue Berry Farm in Papillion. This experience offers a bit of everything with equestrian jousting, six performance stages, artisan vendors and more.

May 11–12
AKC Dog Show
Grand Island is going to the dogs. It’s the annual AKC Dog Show at Fonner Park’s Pinnacle Bank Expo Center. Dogs compete for Best in Show and in coursing ability tests, such as a timed 100-yard dash where each dog chases a lure.

May 18
The Pinewood Bowl Theater in Lincoln welcomes Grammy-nominated NEEDTOBREATHE and its unique blend of modern rock and pop music. Special guests Judah & the Lion take the stage first.

June 1
Steele City Ride-In Bike Show
For the 27th year, riders from across the Midwest traverse the state’s scenic byways. Based in Steele City, bikers compete for prizes, ride, camp and display their motorcycles.

June 7–9
Sidney Gold Rush Days
Held in Legion Park, this family-friendly festival brings to life the history of the 1870s gold rush trail. Journey to the Old West for wagon rides, quick draw competitions, gold panning, blacksmithing and other historical skills.

June 14–24
College World Series
Batter-up! It’s time to cheer on the NCAA’s best baseball teams as they compete for the Division 1 Championship at Charles Schwab Field Omaha. (For AAA Member-exclusive discounts on baseball games and more, visit

June 12–15
NebraskaLand Days: Buffalo Bill PRCA Rodeo
One of the state’s signature events, NebraskaLand Days offers something for everyone. Highlights include world-class rodeo competitions, a parade and the Viaero Wireless Summer Jam Concert Series on June 21 and 22 that features Parker McCollum and Jelly Roll. 

June 14–16
Swedish Midsommar Festival
Stromsburg, the Swede Capital of Nebraska, celebrates its heritage each summer with a festival.
Swedish costumes, dancing and traditional food pair with a parade, car show, carnival rides and more.

June 15–Aug. 10
Fort Cody Summer Music Series
Bring your lawn chair to North Platte for Thursday night concerts at Cody Park Trading Post. Local artists are followed by featured acts each week at this popular live music event.

July 4
Seward Fourth of July Celebration
Celebrate our nation’s birthday in Nebraska’s Official Fourth of July City. The day is packed with activities that include a craft show, a car show, a grand parade and a fireworks extravaganza.

July 11–14
Fur Trade Days
Chadron hosts this award-winning festival honoring the history of the fur trade. In addition to checking out the carnival rides, the fireworks and the food, visit the buckskinner’s camp for muzzleloading shoots, tomahawk-throwing contests, and traders selling furs and period handicrafts.

July 12–14
Wayne Chicken Show
Clucking skills aren’t required for this unique festival, but they could earn you serious bragging rights in the annual cluck-off. Come for Friday’s Henoween entertainment and stay for the wing-eating contest, the 5K run and other egg-citing activities.

A woman dances at the North Platte Pow Wow. Visit North Platte

July 19–21
North Platte Pow Wow
Explore Native American history through dancing, drumming, singing, food and crafts. Held at Buffalo Bill Ranch State Historical Park in North Platte, the inter-tribal event includes educational commentary on Native American culture and pow wow rituals.

July 24–27
Nebraska’s Big Rodeo
Burwell, the Outdoor Rodeo Capital of Nebraska, is home to this super-sized event. In partnership with the Garfield County Fair, it offers animal shows and carnival rides along with traditional rodeo events and a wild horse race.

July 26
Luke Bryan: Mind of a Country Boy Tour
Omaha’s CHI Health Center welcomes the American Idol judge and five-time entertainer of the year. The show includes Alana Springsteen, Larry Fleet and Dillon Carmichael. (For AAA Member-exclusive discounts on concerts and more, visit

July 28–Aug. 2
Nebraska Star Party
Valentine welcomes astronomy enthusiasts and stargazing newcomers to the certified international dark skies at Merritt Reservoir State Recreation Area for one of the nation’s premier starwatching events. Camp out, attend Beginner’s Field School and children’s programs, take day excursions, and experience breathtaking views of the nighttime skies.

July 30
Barry Manilow: The Last Omaha Concert
He “Can’t Smile Without You,” so say goodbye to this pop legend as he closes out the touring phase of his career during a stop at Omaha’s CHI Health Center.

Aug. 3, 4 and 31; Sept. 1
Living History at Fort Atkinson
Living history weekends at Fort Atkinson State Historical Park in Fort Calhoun provide a glimpse of life on the Great Plains 200 years ago through reenactors and trade demonstrations.

Aug. 6–10
Sandhills Open Road Challenge
This one-of-a-kind rally-style open road race winds through 55 miles of the Nebraska Sandhills. The demanding course appeals to drivers and spectators alike.

Aug. 7–10
Old West Balloon Fest
Head to Mitchell for the 10th anniversary of this hot-air balloon festival. Delight in the night glow and drone show, the liftoff of more than 50 hot-air balloons, and wiener dog races.

Aug. 8–11
Columbus Days
It’s the 50th year of this late-summer tradition. There will be big fun for everyone with live music, cornhole tournaments, parades and the state’s largest block party.

Aug. 16–18
Kool-Aid Days
Kool-Aid was invented in Hastings more than 90 years ago, and the popular beverage is celebrated each year. Don’t miss the Kool-Aid drinking contest, the World’s Largest Kool-Aid Stand and the Kardboard Boat Races.

Aug. 18
Travel back to the 1980s rock era when Nancy and Ann Wilson bring Heart’s Royal Flush Tour to Lincoln’s Pinnacle Bank Arena. Arrive early to catch special guest Cheap Trick. (For AAA Member-exclusive discounts on concerts and more, visit

Aug. 23–Sept. 2
Nebraska State Fair
Celebrate all things Nebraska at the fairgrounds in Grand Island. Find your favorite food on a stick; enjoy livestock and horse shows; browse hundreds of exhibits; or catch concerts by Casting Crowns, Yung Gravy, the Gatlin Brothers and Riley Green.

Aug. 24
Rob Zombie & Alice Cooper
The Freaks on Parade tour brings rock icons Rob Zombie and Alice Cooper, along with Ministry and Filter, to the Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln.

Aug. 26
Styx & Foreigner: Renegades & Juke Box Heroes Tour
The 30-city tour rolls into Omaha’s CHI Health Center, bringing classic rock hits from two legendary bands, along with special guest John Waite.

Aug. 31
Husker Football Home Opener
The University of Nebraska takes on the University of Texas at El Paso at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, kicking off the season with the first of four home games in a row. (For AAA Member-exclusive discounts on football games and more, visit

Sept. 10
Birds of a Feather
Join birders of all ages for the educational program Watching for Raptors at E.T. Mahoney State Park near Ashland.

Hawks Pavilion entry atrium with views of the Joslyn Building, Scott Pavilion, and arrival garden. Rendering courtesy of Moare

Sept. 10
Joslyn Art Museum Reopening
Closed since May 2022 for a major renovation and expansion project, this beloved museum will reopen to the public. The date marks the anticipated debut of the Rhonda and Howard Hawks Pavilion, which adds 42,000 square feet of space.

Sept. 10–12
Husker Harvest Days
Explore the latest ag innovations, connect with industry experts, watch field demonstrations and visit vendor booths at this farm show in Grand Island.

Revelers at the National Avocado Launching Championships load avocados into giant slingshots for launching. Visit North Platte

Sept. 13–14
National Avocado Launching Championship
Form a team and compete for the national avocado launching title in North Platte. Create your own human-powered launching device, like a slingshot, and join the fun. Avocados provided.

Sept. 27–29
Dear Evan Hansen
The Tony- and Grammy-winning musical comes to Lincoln’s Lied Center for Performing Arts. The story about a high school student searching for a way to fit in is considered the first “contemporary musical about connection in the digital age.”

Sept. 27–29
Junk Jaunt
A shopping experience like no other in central Nebraska. Hop in your car to traverse 500 miles of garage sales. Pass through nine counties and 35 communities on your quest for preowned treasures.

Sept. 28–29
67th Annual Fall Flea Market
Join thousands trekking to historic Brownville to enjoy the fall colors and more than 200 vendors offering antiques, crafts, art, food and more.

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