Omaha offers so many options for date nights for young couples, older couples, dating couples or, like us, old married folk. Regardless of your likes and interests, there’s something for everyone in the Big O. For us, we prefer simple date nights – dinner, nice walks, a movie or maybe a game night. Since opening in 2010, Midtown Crossing has grown into a perfect date location for everyone. From summer concerts and outdoor movies at Turner Park to holiday entertainment, Midtown Crossing offers a fun experience for date night. We thought we’d check out a few options for a fun night (or day) out at Midtown.
Dinner and a Movie
Our family has been big fans of Alamo Drafthouse Cinema since the Texas-based chain opened its first location in the Metro in LaVista. Alamo has become our go-to theater because we like the no-talking or texting policies during movies, as well as the food and service. In fact, our daughter Steph and I have made enough visits to the theater to earn the chain’s highest customer achievement – Top Brass. Each level is based on your movie-going experience, from Citizen (0-4 visits annually) to Top Brass, 50+ visits each year. I was thrilled to achieve Top Brass. You get certain perks for each level, including free meals, free movie tickets and, for Top Brass, a private party for you and the other top level customers.
So, when we learned that the Midtown theater location was going to transition to Omaha’s second Alamo location, we were excited. We were excited to see out first movie there during the Top Brass celebration. We weren’t disappointed. Since it opened in March, we’ve seen nearly about five movies there. The food is high quality and the service maintains the chain’s high standard. Lisa and I caught our second viewing of “Shazam!” during a day date. Working with Midtown Crossing management, we enjoyed lunch and the movie.
The new Alamo location offers recliners so you can relax as you watch your favorite movie. Each row features a small table between two chairs so you and your movie partner don’t have to worry about holding your food on your lap. Each chair also has a cup holder in the armchair if you prefer. Once the movie starts, you can order refills or additional treats by completing your request on a slip of paper and displaying in a slot on the table, so your server can grab the message without having to interrupt your movie.
Another aspect of Alamo that we really like is the movie parties and classic movie showcases. From “Christmas Vacation” to series themes based on authors, directors, actors or genres, Alamo offers an opportunity to walk down memory lane on occasion.
Located just outside the main area of Midtown Crossing, Spielbound Board Game Café provides a setting for drinks and board games galore. Located at 33rd and Harney, Spielbound features more than 2,400 games you can choose to play, from Scrabble to Game of Thrones and more. Spielbound also sells a variety of coffee drinks, as well as some alcohol. The café offers a limited menu, so outside food can be brought in (within reason), but no outside drinks are allowed.
In order to play games, you need to buy a membership or a day pass ($5 per person). We went with the day pass, which allows you to leave and come back during Spielbound’s operating hours. Just get a wristband before you leave.
The games are so much fun to play. The two of us tried our hand at Scrabble. Time quickly flew by as we pondered and plodded using the letters on our holders. It bites when you can only use one or two letters that net you three points. Oh, joy! Regardless, we had a blast and can’t wait to visit again. We’ll bring more players next time.
Dinner and shopping
With nearly 15 eateries, it’s easy to choose a place to eat. From fast casual to upscale dining, Midtown Crossing can meet your needs. With a multiple James Beard-nominated chef and owner, The Grey Plume is an outstanding restaurant to enjoy farm-to-table meals set in an environmentally-friendly atmosphere. Chef Clayton Chapman’s restaurant was the first to open in Midtown Crossing nine years ago.
We enjoyed a casual dinner at Black Oak Grill. Featuring casual comfort food, Black Oak Grill uses fresh ingredients for its menu. I enjoyed homemade meatloaf, which included mashed potatoes made from potatoes, not a box. You can taste the freshness with every bite. Lisa went with a turkey burger and fries, which she also enjoyed. We topped our meal with a dessert featuring a brownie topped with ice cream and whipped cream.
One of my all-time favorite restaurants opened at Midtown a couple of years ago. Ray’s Original Buffalo Wings used to be located near Ralston, but closed after 10 years due to professional opportunities and family activities. A few years ago, Ray brought back the wings cooking in a kitchen out of a South Omaha bar. He later moved the operation to Midtown Crossing. The official bar of Buffalo Bills fans, the western New Yorker enjoys sharing his love for the Bills and wings. I’m excited he brought the wings back.
Daughter Steph follows a vegetarian lifestyle, so Modern Love is one of her favorite places. The restaurant nearly doubled its seating capacity when it relocated to Midtown Crossing. I enjoy the buffalo cauliflower, which is Modern Love’s version of Buffalo wings.
With so many dining options, you may want to walk off some of the meal, so why not check out Midtown Crossing’s retail scene? We are fans of The Afternoon. From locally-made jelly and jams to kitchen utensils, the home décor store offers a variety of items to display or use at home. The store has a nice selection of items that highlight Omaha and Nebraska, including books, serving boards and coasters. We’ve bought a few holiday gifts for family and friends at The Afternoon.
If you enjoy having a coffee and dessert, we recommend visiting Culprit Café, next door to Alamo. From lattes to cakes and pastries to quiche, Culprit Café has an outstanding menu.
In addition to the places we’ve visited, Midtown Crossing is home to several attractions and restaurants. Daughter Steph and her friends have fun creating paintings at the Corky Canvas. Turner Park is home to outdoor concerts, as well as Omaha’s Jazz on the Green series every summer.
Enjoy a nightcap with your favorite drink at Proof. With a menu that features Kentucky bourbon, vodka, tequila, wine and other drinks, it’s difficult to find something you won’t want to sample.
Midtown Crossing is a unique entertainment and retail district, combined with Forbes Top 500 companies nearby, such as Kiewit Construction and Mutual of Omaha, as well as Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway. Condos and other homes are located in the area.
We enjoy visiting Midtown Crossing and recommend it to you for a day out with family or friends, as well as for date night.