Residents at Good Samaritan Society – Hastings Village have traveled hundreds of miles this summer exploring Nebraska.
Recreation Director Ashley Fitzgerald planned trips to museums, restaurants, wineries, monuments and shops all marked as Nebraska Passport stops.
They just love it and have so much fun seeing the countryside, all the small towns, shops and the time to walk around and visit a new place." – Ashley Fitzgerald, Good Samaritan Society – Hastings Village recreation director
The Nebraska Passport program is a series of 70 locations around the state marked as passport stops to encourage visitors to explore new places and discover hidden gems.
Ashley has taken residents to 22 stops so far, often visiting three to four places in a day.
“A lot of times the bus will leave at 8:30 in the morning and get home at 5:30 in the evening. Last week we did over 275 miles in one day,” she says.
Although each trip has an itinerary, they always make time for spontaneous stops along the way — especially for ice cream — making the day all about exploring new places.
So far, a few favorite stops have included a trip to a zoo, a tour of a chalk mine and a visit to a marble museum, along with unique restaurants and fresh produce markets.
Ashley says residents are always surprised by what each trip holds.
“’I always hear from residents, ‘I had no idea that this was there!’” she says.
Ashley has 16 more stops planned this summer before the Nebraska Passport program ends in September. At each stop, residents receive a stamp in their passport, before turning it in for the chance to win prizes from the Nebraska Tourism department.
Each trip always has a waitlist, and residents are already looking forward to next year, making the summer road trips just what Ashley was hoping for: the opportunity to give her residents fun, enriching experiences.