The annual Metro Guide is your handbook to all things local — things to see, places to go, where to work or get an education and more. The 2017 edition, "Color Me Omaha," is a key resource for information about the local community.

Head east on Leavenworth Street, survey the buildings between stoplights, and suddenly they grab your attention. Eight balls, giant fanged snakes and luscious fruits and vegetables. They’re all pieces of murals that decorate the central-area street east of Saddle Creek Road, adorning businesses such as the Leavenworth Bar and Family Dollar.

Open a box of crayons and color outside the lines. It makes life exciting, especially when you do it in one of the nation’s most vibrant metropolitan areas with a population just under 1 million. OK, that’s not an official designation. But this is a place that boasts a rich palette of amenities that leaves visitors green with envy and residents dripping with pride.

Open a box of crayons and color outside the lines. It makes life exciting, especially when you do it in one of the nation’s most vibrant metropolitan areas with a population just under 1 million. OK, that’s not an official designation. But this is a place that boasts a rich palette of amenit…

Healing isn’t just about medicine. "Studies have shown that creating an atmosphere of hope and resilience through artwork goes beyond curing a disease and leads to improved patient outcomes," said Dr. Ken Cowan, director of the new Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center. Hence the Chihuly Sanctuary, an art installation on the second and fourth floors of the $323 million Buffett Center on the campus shared by the University of Nebraska Medical Center and Nebraska Medicine.

Those in search of great places to work, good places to start a business, affordable homes, excellent schools, colleges and universities or other lifestyle amenities often find them here.

When Brady Shannon sees the Special Olympics symbol, he points to himself and says, "That’s me.’’ The 8-year-old thinks it’s pretty amazing that he’s part of a team.

Recycling is good for the community and great for the planet. You can put some recyclables in your curbside bin for weekly pickup and take others to drop-off sites. Here’s the breakdown.

The Gifford Park Neighborhood Market sprouted from a single sweet-corn stand. It’s now a place for neighbors and others to grow their own dreams.