Grand Island Attractions
Below are listed some of the attractions in the Grand Island area and surrounding communities
Nebraska State Fair
Before there was a state, there was a fair. From the days of the first Nebraska State Fair along the banks of the Missouri River to the present 11-day show hosted in Grand Island, the Fair has always been a joyful occasion for all.
Since those formative years, the Nebraska State Fair has grown and continues to showcase the talent, products and people of Nebraska. To many, the fair was the main social event of the year. A place to meet distant neighbors, learn from others, while enjoying national and local entertainment. Through rain and shine, loyal fairgoers brave the elements to continue the tradition of the Nebraska State Fair.
There have been many changes throughout the years, however; one theme remains constant; Fair time is a time to celebrate Nebraska’s Pride.
The Nebraska State Fair offers hundreds of attractions including many entertainers, exhibits, midway rides and delicious food. With a history older than the state itself, the Nebraska State Fair combines tradition with innovation to produce an educational and exciting event for the entire family.
Stuhr Museum of The Prairie Pioneer
The mission of Stuhr Museum of the Prairie Pioneer is to preserve and portray the inspiring era of the pioneer town builders who created the first communities in Nebraska.
Praised as "one of the top '10' places to relive America's past" by Good Housekeeping magazine, Stuhr Museum of the Prairie Pioneer offers a hands-on living history experience that tells the story of early town building in Nebraska. Stuhr Museum is a world-class, nationally recognized educational and cultural institution, and an outdoor living history museum.
For more than forty years, Stuhr Museum of the Prairie Pioneer has given visitors a glimpse of pioneer life. Described as a "crossroads in time," Stuhr Museum preserves and portrays the inspiring story of the pioneer town builders who created the first communities in Nebraska
Fonner Park Horse Racing... Fun You Can Bet On!
Fonner Park features world-class pari-mutual racing from New York to California, featuring sensational action from Belmont Park, Hollywood Park, Hurchill Downs, Calder Race Course, the Fair Grounds, Turfway Park, Santa Anita and many others!
Organized in 1953, Fonner Park conducted its first thoroughbred horse race in 1954. Fonner Park is host to thirteen weeks of exciting LIVE horse racing each spring from mid-February through Kentucky Derby Day (always the first Saturday in May). Watch and wager daily on the nation's best tracks at Finish Line Restaurant and Sports Lounge.
Visit Fonner Park’s website at : www.FonnerPark.com
Heartland Events Center
THE HEARTLAND EVENTS CENTER is Central Nebraska’s newest venue for Conventions, Trade Shows, Concerts, Large Banquets, Athletic Events and other forms of entertainment. This centrally located 180,000 sq. ft. multipurpose facility is spacious and attractive.
The Heartland Events Center adjoins Fonner Park Thoroughbred Race Track and its growing complex of Island Oasis Water Park, and softball and soccer fields, the Thompson 4-H Arena, horse barns, and new city fire station. Fonner Park has served the citizens of Nebraska and visitors for over 50 years, and these facilities are conveniently situated near area hotels, restaurants, shopping, and other area attractions.
Grand Island’s Island Oasis Water Park
Discover the Island! Grab your sunglasses, throw on your swimsuit and discover a day of summer fun at Island Oasis Water Park. Island Oasis offers over SIX ACRES of refreshing family fun!
Guests can brave the waves in the Wave Pool, or relax and unwind in the 750 ft Lazy River. More adventurous thrill seekers will experience the force of gravity firsthand when they ride one of two six story High Speed Slides! Adventurers can also attempt to tackle six giant 150 ft slides. Children will love zero depth areas that include spraying fountains and a Wacky Wet Otter Slide. Plus, they can build castles in the sand, stroll across the lily pads, or test their skills on the log walk. Enjoy a match of sand volleyball then drop your anchor and feed the crew at the full concession and patio area!
Kids Kingdom Playground - Bigger, Bolder, Wilder
New York architect, John Dean, designed Kid's Kingdom with input from 1,500 Grand Island children's imaginations of the most popular features suggested. Built with donations from the community and by 1000s of volunteers, this 17,000 sq. ft. playground is bigger, bolder and wilder than any playground in the state!
Free of charge and handicapped accessible, Kid's Kingdom features swings, ladders, bridges, monkey bars, spider webs, rope climbs, slides mazes, obstacle courses, nets, tunnels, cars, a pirate ship, firepole, tree house and rock climbing among the trees. Kid's Kingdom offers a great opportunity for the entire family to spend quality time together being kids!
Sandhill Crane Migration
Each Spring, more than 80 percent of the world's population of sandhill cranes migrate through Nebraska's Platte River valley. Along with them come millions of migrating ducks and geese. They come to rest and refuel for about a month as they prepare to finish their journey to the breeding grounds in Canada, Alaska, and Siberia.
Sandhill cranes are often referred to as "living dinosaurs." Fossils of the wing bones have been discovered in Nebraska dating as far back as nine million years.
"Grand Island is the #1 place in the world for bird-watchers." This declaration comes from Forbes FYI, a supplement to Forbes Magazine. Each spring in our back yard we have 600,000 sandhill cranes, 14-16 million ducks and geese, plus more than 300 speacies of indigenous and migratory birds. Nearly 130 species nest in the Platte River Valley.
Heartland Pubic Shooting Park
This Public Park is operated under the Parks and Recreation Department of the City of Grand Island, Nebraska. They are the largest, most complete public shooting facility in the Midwest with many recreational and competitive activities including:
- Virgil Eihusen Skeet Fields
- Sporting Clays Range
- Trap Range
- Five Stand Range
- Rifle Ranges Out To 600 Yards
- Handgun Ranges Out To 50 Yards
- Archery Range
- RV Park With Full Power And Water
- Retriever Training Area
- Catch And Release Fishing Lake
- Competitive And Recreational Events In Shotgun, Rifle and Handgun
- Educational Instruction And Shooting Clinics
- Ammunition Available - Shotgun and Rifle/Handgun
- Eye and Ear Protection Available On Site
- Shotguns Available For Rent
- Loaner Shotguns For Youth
- Shooting Carts Available For Easy Access To Our Shooting Complex.
- Model Airplane Flying Club
Jackrabbit Run Golf Course
Jackrabbit Run is an 18-hole public course located at 2800 North Shady Bend Road in Grand Island. It was selected by Golf Digest as a 3.5 Star Award Winner of 'Places to Play for 2008.'
Visit the Jackrabbit Run website at: www.JackrabbitRunGolf.com
Indianhead Golf Club
Indianhead is a public course with 18 holes located at 4100 Husker Hwy in Grand Island. This course offers a full line pro shop, a casual but comfortable setting for snacking and dining and a well manicured golf course that is fair, but challenging.
Visit the Indianhead Golf Club website at: www.IndianheadGolf.com
Fonner View Golf Course
The 9-hole "Fonner View" course at the Fonner View Golf Course is located at 2224 South Stuhr Road in Grand Island. Call 308-382-0202 for more information or to set up a tee time.
Centura Hills Golf Club
Located at 312 entura Hills Drive in Cairo, Centura Hills provides an excellent countryside golf experience. This 18-hole public course features a putting green, driving range, rental/pull carts, snack bar and meeting room.
Miletta Vista Winery
Your destination for relaxation..
Their award winning wines will make your visit to their hilltop a refreshing experience. Their river valley includes hundreds of trees, pasture, crops, ponds and river, a view that will knock your socks off. The nine varieties of grapes they raise provide excellent flavors for a variety of wines and some wonderful blends.
Visit the Miletta Vista Winery website at: www.MilettaVistaWinery.com
Moonlight Ridge Vineyard
Experience something different....
Come to the country for a taste of a forgotten lifestyle. Let the view of our vineyard immerse you while enjoying our selection of wines by the glass or by the bottle.
The ambience of our tasting room will have you coming back for more. Our dream is yours to enjoy!
Visit the Moonlight Ridge Vineyard website at: www.MoonlightRidgeVineyard.com
Mid Nebraska Speedway
Welcome to Mid-Nebraska Speedway, Doniphan, Nebraska
"The Racer's Choice"
Fastest Track in Mid-Nebraska!
Racing Saturday Nights - April thru Sept
Gates open at 5:00pm
Races start at 7:00pm
Visit Mid Nebraska Speedway’s website at: www.MidNebraskaSpeedway.com
Lincoln Highway Scenic Byway
The Lincoln Highway was the country’s first paved intercontinental highway from New York to San Francisco, stretching almost 3,400 miles coast to coast. Beginning in 1913, the road was completed in 1935 and cuts directly across Nebrasa as U.S. Highway 30 and directly through the historic downtown area of Grand Island. This byway has been guiding travelers across the state since 1912, following the path taken by many pioneers.
Visit the Lincoln Highway website at: www.LincolnHighwayScenicByway.com
Sandhills Journey Scenic Byway
The late Charles Kuralt called Nebraska’s Highway 2 "one of America’s 10 most beautiful highways" exclaiming, "This road will take you to one of the last unexplored frontiers where vast treasures can be discovered."
Like the sea, the emptiness of the Sandhills gives the traveler a strange sense of comfort. Highway 2 is not just another highway that goes somewhere Highway 2 is somewhere."
The Sandhills Journey Byway extends from the city of Grand Island west to the city of Alliance along Nebraska Highway 2. The byway meanders through the communities of Cairo, Ravenna, Hazard, Litchfield, Mason City, Ansley, Berwyn, Broken Bow, Merna, Anselmo, Dunning, Halsey, Thedford, Seneca, Mullen, Whitman, Hyannis, Ashby, Bingham, Ellsworth, Lakeside, Antioch and Alliance.
Loup River Scenic Byway
From the pristine rolling farmland and hills to the immense and silent solitude of the Sandhills, the Loup Rivers Scenic Byway is truly a treat for the eyes, mind and soul. 141 miles of small towns, scenic beauty, local events, history and friendly people await you as you travel through one of the most beautiful landscapes in America. If you want to experience "small town" Nebraska, this is it. It’s also home to the famous 300+ mile Junk Jaunt.
300 Miles of Treasures!
Welcome to NEBRASKA'S JUNK JAUNT®
It is a 300 mile continuous Yard Sale in central Nebraska. Each of the 35-40 towns organizes a 3-day yard sale. Most towns will have at least one "Central Set-Up" location for vendors. Last year, this fun event drew 20,000 people from 32 states and 70 of 93 Nebraska counties.
Visit the Junk Jaunt website at: www.JunkJaunt.com
Greater Grand Island: Springboard for A Host of Different Experiences
When you’ve seen enough cranes, trains, horses and art in and around Grand Island stay a couple more days……
Grand Island is at the center of Nebraska’s heartland. When staying in Grand Island you can visit all of our attractions, and an added benefit is, within an hour’s drive of Grand Island; you can visit the great attractions found in Nebraska’s heartland.
Just north of Grand Island you can visit the Dannebrog, Danish Capital of Nebraska and the home of Roger Welsh’s Liars Hall of Fame: www.Dannebrog.org
Visit the Happy Jack Chalk Mine: www.HappyJackChalkMine.com
Visit the Dowse Sod House near Comstock, Guided tours are available year-round by pre-arrangement. Phone 308-628 4370 or 308-628-4231
2nd Wind Ranch (the largest collection of Windmills in the World) near Comstock
Lake Calamus near Burwell
Fort Hartsuff Historical Park near Ord
The Museum of Nebraska Baseball Greats: www.NebraskaBaseballMuseum.com/
and much more.
To our east you’ll find the Plainsman Museum: www.PlainsmanMuseum.org
Edgerton Explorit Center, a great hands-on science museum for children of all ages: www.Edgerton.org
and the Lone Tree Monument near Central City
Hastings Champion Sports and Recreation and the home of Koolaid
In Red Cloud the Willa Cather Museum awaits with stories of growing up in Nebraska: www.WillaCather.org
Along, or shall we say over I-80 you’ll find Nebraska’s newest attraction, the Great Platte River Road Archway: www.Archway.org
Not only are there great places to visit and lots of things to see and do, but each community has many unique and fun events all summer long.