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March 2010 YP Connections: YP Q&A


View the Print Media Version online now to enjoy the complete "Magazine Experience."

Each month metroMAGAZINE, in cooperation with The Greater Omaha Young Professionals, polls a group of "YPs" to obtain a brief glimpse into their lives and their insights on our community. Following are the answers which were provided to this months' Q&A:



Katrina Stoffel

Interior Designer,  Alley Poyner Macchietto Architecture, P.C.
Age 33

Right south of downtown in a quaint neighborhood is a little place known as Josephine's Cozy Corner Lounge. This local watering hole holds a very dear place in my heart. When my now Husband and I came back from New York City for our nuptials, we ended the evening with our closest friends still in full wedding attire at this little gem. You feel transformed from the first moment you step into the front door. As you navigate your way through a hallway you descend a couple of steps to discover a place frozen in time. The atmosphere consists of low ceilings, low lighting, and a jukebox that will not accept the new 5 dollar bill. If you are looking for an adventure or an "attitude adjustment" to quote my grandmother, you should stop in and say hello to Frank at Josephine's Cozy Corner Lounge on 2201 Pierce Street.  While you are in the neighborhood check out Malaras home cooked Italian, it is quite tasty and close by at 2123 Pierce Street.  

"You feel transformed from the first moment you step into the front door."

-Katrina Stoffel


Robert Wiebusch

Operations Director, NP Dodge Real Estate
Age: 30 

Simply put, the greatest gem here in Omaha is housing affordability. This city offers an affordability index that makes it very attractive to those who come to visit, and those who travel away from Omaha quickly realize how good we have it here. Comparable housing in other urban settings is often much more expensive which tends to shock visitors when they find out how much home they can afford here relative to their current home cities. This has proved to be a gem in disguise over the past few years as other cities have had widespread home price corrections (i.e. depreciation!) due to the boom years prior. Omaha has had very modest price correction which has actually helped to earn us some national recognition as the fastest recovering city. Omaha will continue to grow, and I am very proud to be a resident of this great city! 


Meagan Pleak

CPA & Manager, Dana F. Cole & Company, LLP
Age: 28

Omaha has many wonderful treasures. We have beautiful parks, amazing restaurants, and fun attractions. However, the true gem of our city is our people. "Paying it Forward" is a term we are beginning to hear more often. It means that a person helps someone else without receiving anything in return. The people of Omaha live by this motto. We have been inspired by people like Father Flanagan who founded Boys Town, which now helps more than 400,000 children a year in over a dozen states. Warren Buffett is another person who "Pays it Forward." While he is one of the worlds richest men he has also managed to donate over $32 billion dollars to charities, drives his own car, and lives in the home he purchased over 50 years ago. Omaha is filled with people who volunteer their time and money to help others. It is filled with people who scoop their neighbors driveways, bake cookies for bake sales, and return misplaced purses to the customer service department. With leaders like these it is no wonder that Omahas greatest hidden gem is its people.  


Jacob Houser

Development Associate, Omaha Performing Arts
Age: 32 

I think one of Omaha's greatest hidden gems is the 1200 CLUB inside the Holland Performing Arts Center. The 1200 CLUB has a swanky nightclub kind of feel and features up-and-coming jazz, blues, world music artists, and even comedians. It's sophisticated and classy, and you get to see acts that you really dont get anywhere else in town. I have seen so many shows there by energetic and fun artists who are incredibly talented and on the verge of their big break. And because it's a nightclub, it's casual enough that you can wear jeans and just relax. Everyone gets to sit at a table and you can order drinks and appetizers during the show. Or you can get up and dance if that's what you want to do. It's a great place to enjoy great entertainment at a spot that's a bit upscale without breaking the bank. Tickets are around $25. More information on 1200 CLUB artists can be found at OmahaPerformingArts.org/1200Club.  


Tony Tyrrell

Realtor, CBSHOME Real Estate
Age: 28  

Tucked into a non-descript location in a store front off West Center Road (12355 West Center Rd., #247, to be exact) is one of Omaha's newest, hippest and healthiest restaurants, The Green Belly. The Green Belly describes itself as an Eco-friendly establishment that serves environmentally responsible, fine food. My friends and I describe it as simply delicious. The Green Belly serves salads, lots and lots of them, but with a huge list of super fresh and fun ingredients like fresh mozzarella, dried cranberries, and Greek peppers. You can mix and match your own, but they also have some amazing pre-designed selections, like artichoke chicken. The portions are bountiful, and inexpensive - the Baby Belly salad goes for under six bucks, and can easily feed two. Green Belly is a find for more than salads, however, because they also serve food like the Nuevo Cubano Panini or a peanut butter and jam with bananas Panini! The Green Belly is great for the environment, not just for you. They serve all of their food in containers and disposables made from 100% compostable corn. Omaha deserves a fresh new concept like The Green Belly. It's a real gem.    


"I realized that the appeal of Omaha, at least for me, is the fact that we have such a rich cultural landscape"

-Nicole Palof

Nicole Palof

Grants Manager, Nebraska Arts Council
Age: 27

At first I was going to write about how I think that Omaha's hidden gems are all of the rich cultural offerings that are available throughout the city all year long. And I definitely think that's true - galleries, theaters, museums, music, film - Omaha has it all in that regard. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that the appeal of Omaha, at least for me, is the fact that we have such a rich cultural landscape, yet most people here are still down-to-earth and full of Midwestern charm and friendliness. The city is a very big small town, which makes all of the great arts and culture offerings, recreation activities, restaurants, etc. all the more accessible.


-end- metroMAGAZINE

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