Discover South Omaha: A Guide
One of the most culturally diverse neighborhoods in Omaha is South Omaha, which has long been a hub for immigrants. South Omaha, once known as “The Magic City,” attracted thousands of hardworking immigrants from Europe to work in the warehouses in the early 20th century. Today, South Omaha retains its diverse cultural heritage as home to much of the city’s Latino community.
In addition to its many attractions such as parks, restaurants, tourist attractions, golf courses, and one of the most prestigious zoos in the United States, South Omaha is a lively neighborhood that hosts numerous cultural events, concerts, and dances. Here’s a guide to help you learn more about South O.
The Latino Museum
South O! Arts and Culture
El Museo Latino is located on 25th Street in South O and opened on May 5, 1993. It is one of about 20 Latino museums in the United States. It features many events and exhibitions that aim to connect communities. Not only is it a fascinating meeting place, but it is also an educational center that offers programs for children, teenagers and adults.
El Museo Latino is open on Thursdays and Fridays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. General admission is $ 5. More information is available at elmuseolatino.org.
Photo: South Omaha Mural Project Facebook page
- From the future to the past mural
- 25th and N St., parking is available in Plaza de la Raza
Exploring the concept of a magical city, the mural project will delight those visiting South Omaha. Lively colors, figures and typical depictions of Latin American and indigenous immigration as well as issues of social justice adorn the parking lots and facades in the area.
Right next to the Kubat pharmacy you will find the mural “Threads of Life”. A few meters from there you will see Del Futuro al Pasado, where Mexican cultural themes are fully exhibited. To learn more, visit southomahamuralproject.com.
The Tree of Life is located near the 24th and L St. and was created by the artist David Dahlquist. Photo by Karlha Rivas
The Tree of Life welcomes everyone to the historic South Omaha area. It is a symbol that represents the mixing and bonding of ethnic groups and cultures associated with the region, such as the Czech, Polish, Croatian and Mexican communities. Definitely take a picture there!
Yes, the celebration of Cinco de Mayo 2021 has been postponed to June. Photo courtesy of the Cinco de Mayo Omaha Facebook page
In honor of the extensive Mexican heritage in the area, the South Omaha community celebrates the Cinco de Mayo Festival, as well as other events in May, including live music, parades, and dances to show cultural pride. Due to COVID-19, the celebration will take place from June 11th to 13th this year.
Mr. Music, please? Promotional photo from the Guaca Maya Facebook page
If you want to enjoy great live Mexican music to dance to, Guaca Maya restaurant is the place not only for its ambience but also for its delicious Mexican dishes. More information is available at guaca-maya.com.
South High Soccer is action-packed fun! Photo by Ben Weber on Unsplash
For football fans, spring brings the start of intercollegiate tournaments, where the best teams (male and female) from each school compete in the tournament organized by Omaha South High Magnet School. To read the calendar, visit southpackerspride.com/events.
South O! history
For people who love architecture, the Post Office building in South Omaha is one of the main attractions in the area. The building was built in 1899 and features a classical rebirth facade with huge columns and Roman Corinthian capitals. Inside, the leaded glass windows are beautifully maintained.
Plaza de la Raza is in the heart of the shops and restaurants on 24th Street. Photo by Karlha Rivas
- Race course
- 24th and N. Streets, west side
Located in the middle of 24th Street in South Omaha, the Plaza de la Raza (“Race Meeting Place”) is an emblematic place popular with Latinos. It also has a station where visitors can rent a bike.
Photo taken June 2010, The Hometown Tourist Blog
- South Omaha City Hall
- 5002 South 24 .. road
The town hall building is one of the most important architectural works in the region. It was built in 1906 and designed by the renowned architect John Latenser Sr. It was used as a government building until 1999 and is now a commercial office building retaining much of its original Classical Revival style construction.
The large ballroom of the Livestock Exchange is ideal for large celebrations. Photo by Brandeis Catering
- Cattle swap building ballrooms
- 4920 S. 30th St.
This building is considered one of the most romantic places in the city thanks to the many weddings that take place there. It is located at 4920 S. 30th St. Built in 1926, the building was once the center of Omaha cattle farming and provided the yard workers with housing, restaurants and other services. In 1999, it was declared an Omaha Landmark and inscribed on the National Register of Historic Places. It has two gorgeous dance halls on the 10th floor with an amazing 22 foot roof that offers breathtaking views. Do not miss it!
Delicious donuts, cookies, pan dulce, cakes and Christmas cakes from Rosco de Reyes are available at the local international bakery. Photo from Facebook.
If you want to enjoy the best bread and Mexican sweets, visit the International Bakery. It offers a wide variety of breads to pamper your palate. This place is one of the most famous Latino-owned bakeries in town. It is located at 5106 S. 24th St.
South O! Delicious
Does your mouth water too? Photo from Rico Pan’s Facebook page
- Rico Pan Bakery
- 4030 S. 24th St.
- 402.702.7426 (RICO)
- Sunday – Saturday 6 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Since we love bread and sweets, here is another option for you with a South American twist. The Rico Pan Bakery is located at 4030 S. 24th St. and, thanks to its roots in Cochabamba, Bolivia, offers a nice selection of South American bread and sweets. It also has a great Peruvian influence, which makes for an exquisite combination
There are so many wonderful restaurants in South Omaha serving a wide variety of delicious dishes that it is difficult to put them all on one page. But let’s try to name a few of them! Some of these locations also offer alcoholic beverages.
El Alamo 4917 S 24th St – Mexicans
El Jalapeño 2809 Q St – Mexicans
La Choza 5133 S 25th St – Salvadorans
El Dorado 5134 S 24th St. – Mexicans
Isla del Mar 5101 S 36th St – Mexican
Howard’s Charro Café 4443 S 13th St. – Mexicans
Laos Thai 4520 S 24th St – Thai
El Ranchito 4318 S 24th St – Mexicans
Birriería el Chalán 4516 S 24th St – Mexican
Chiltepes 4833s 24th St – Mexicans
Photo from the Taco Truck Facebook page
24th Street has a variety of food trucks, including El Dos de Oro and El de Juan on 24th Street and Castelar Street.
Paleteria y Neveria la Michoacana, 4924 S 24th St.
ice cream parlor
Nothing helps beat the hot weather like good ice cream. La Michoacana is known for its type of ice cream. There are two locations on 24th Street. You can also visit Santa Fe Ice Cream to sample some of the most popular local flavors.
For the Carne Asada
Latino convenience stores sell some of the best meats at great prices. For those who love a good Sunday Carne Asada, La Güera, Las Nenas, El Pueblito and Los Mexicanos 6 are some of the places that you should visit. They’re all on 24th Street.
Jacobo’s is a South Omaha institution sourcing ingredients for authentic Latin American cuisine. It is located at 4621 S 24th St.
Salsa to take away (Jacobo’s)
And then there is Jacobo’s supermarket. When visiting South Omaha, be sure to try the authentic Salsa Mexicana and Salsa Casera, all made from natural ingredients with no preservatives. If you’re lucky, you can also get some of the freshest tortillas around, but you’d better be quick because they run out quickly! Make sure you bring cash to pay for your purchases.
Shop till you drop at Plaza Latina, 2402 E St, Omaha
South O! Shops and souvenirs
For a souvenir of Mexican or Latin American culture, check out La Esmeralda, which sells authentic Mexican clothing on Q Street, as well as Los Vaqueros, which sells some of the best leather boots.
If you want even more variety, you can visit Plaza Latina on 24th and O. Streets, where you can even find a travel agency if you want to travel comfortably to a Latino country.
Don’t miss the Saturday and Sunday market, which is an excellent opportunity to pick up some souvenirs. Mosaics are everywhere in South Omaha. So don’t forget to check them out.