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What began as a trip to catch a few games of the NCAA College World Series turned into a week-long exploration of Omaha. Don’t get me wrong. We did see some baseball. Lots of baseball. Although not quite the draw as the Major League World Series, the NCAA College World Series is a two-week-long spectacle of amazingly good baseball, spirited fans, tailgating on steroids (pun intended), food, souvenirs, and parties. And for diehard fans, 2010 will be the last year to experience all this in venerable Rosenblatt Stadium, where the CWS has been played since 1950 (they are tearing it down and building a great new ballpark downtown).

But Omaha has so much more to offer than baseball. From the National Historic Landmark of Father Flanagan’s Boys Town to the art deco-designed restored Union Station now hosting The Durham Museum to the Heartland of America Park featuring a 300-ft fountain and a 3000-ft pedestrian bridge stretching across the Missouri River, to the eclectic shopping, dining and entertainment within the Old Market district, Omaha pleases baseball widows and baseball fans alike.

And for the whole family, Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo is a must-see. Located across the street from Rosenblatt Stadium (how convenient), it features the world’s largest indoor rainforest, desert, and nocturnal exhibits, plus an aquarium, Orangutan Forest and Gorilla Valley, Cat Complex, Bear Canyon, and the brand new Skyfari, an aeriel chairlift that gives visitors spectacular tree-top views of giraffes, cheetahs, elephants, rhinoceros and so much more. Oh my!

So go to Omaha for the baseball. But stay for the attractions, shopping, dining, and Midwest hospitality.