Photos by Chris Machian, Ryan Soderlin and Mark Davis
Excerpt from the “Omaha: We Don’t Coast” magazine:

We loved our 2016 “OMA-goodness” moments – those shared experiences that got the masses talking and amping up Twitter. We had our share over the last year – whether we were welcoming the leader of the free world or the man who helped colonize Mars (on the big screen).

President Barack Obama (top left) – President Obama making Omaha his first stop after his final State of the Union address? That certainly grabbed our attention. Speaking to more than 10,000 people, he gave a shout to our new Baxter Arena (“It’s still got that new arena smell”) but more importantly, highlighted our strong economy.

Terence “Bud” Crawford (top right) – Crawford, Omaha’s own, defended his junior welterweight title at Madison Square Garden in February – and then in July beat back a challenge from previously undefeated Viktor Postol (28-1) at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas – a highly-anticipated super-lightweight unification fight.

Tri-Faith Initiative (bottom left) – Christians, Jews and Muslims came together on one campus that celebrates our differences and promotes understanding. The initiative involving Temple Israel, Countryside Community Church and the American Muslim Institute (formerly American Institute of Islamic Studies and Culture) is believed to be the first and only project of its kind in the world.

Alexander Payne (bottom right) – Oscar-winners, Alexander Payne, an Omaha native, and Matt Damon, a Hollywood superstar, filmed parts of Payne’s latest movie, Downsizing, around Omaha, setting off a selfie and Twitter frenzy. Locations included a neighborhood near 46th and Douglas St., Creighton Prep High School (Payne’s alma mater), La Casa Pizzeria and Borsheim’s in Regency Court.