With all due respect to streamin’, chillin’, slackin’ and relaxin’, life is better when it has an ample dose of honest-to-goodness living. The kind that encourages you to unwind by getting a little wound up, a little excited and fully immersed in living, breathing, breath-stealing fun.

The kind of fun often found on screen, on stage and on command throughout our region. From community festivals to cult classics to cultured offerings, there is never an excuse for having nothing to do.

It’s easy to give your regards to Broadway because Broadway comes to us. Official touring productions of favorites such as “Wicked,” “Come From Away,” and, yes, “Hamilton,” pack the Orpheum Theater. National, regional and local acts grace stages at The Rose Theater, Bellevue Little Theatre and Omaha Community Playhouse (where Marlon Brando and Henry Fonda, among others, made their stage debuts).

And if iambic pentameter is your favorite thing, relax and enjoy a bit of Shakespeare on the Green. If you prefer your stage shows a little more beat driven (engagements of “Stomp” notwithstanding), there is no shortage of concerts or club dates to check out.

On the arena-rocking end: performers big enough to go by one name – Beyoncé, Cher, Wyclef, Bono. Scads of more intimate venues showcase up-and-comers and eclectic troubadours.

While cities twice our size may have one big outdoor venue, we do them thrice better with Stir Cove, SumTur Amphitheater and Westfair Amphitheater. But if one night isn’t enough, lose yourself in the multi-day music goodness of festivals like Maha and Playing With Fire.

And if “free” is the sweetest music to your ears, you’ll find plenty each summer with Jazz on the Green, Bridge Beats and Vibes at Village Pointe, among others.

Skipping from stage(s) to screen you’ll discover a thriving love of film throughout Omaha. The recently rejuvenated Dundee Theater, and its Film Streams sister, the Ruth Sokolof Theater, play independent fare in settings more inviting and engaging than any couch.

Not that you were considering returning to your sofa, of course. You still have to walk The Bob – the Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge spanning the mighty Missouri River (and say hello to newcomer Omar, the troll). And put pedal to the picode gallo on the Taco Ride before touring the public art installations in Council Bluffs.

Did we mention the many holiday celebrations, local festivals and county fairs? Maybe a break on the recliner isn’t such a bad idea after all.

But only for a bit, because around here, a night or afternoon or three-day weekend is always the right time for good music, a good show and a great time.

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