Company Retreats in Lincoln, NE

Finding ways to attract the best and brightest employees has become much more of a focus point for businesses competing to be at the top of their respective industries and marketplaces. However, it’s the things done to retain them and in helping them to grow, both personally and professionally, that will largely determine your long-term success, among many other benefits that take shape with an investment in your people. The work environment, upper management, and co-workers one works closest with have proven time and time again to be one of the biggest factors in job satisfaction and staff tenure. You may get lucky and have everyone on your team mesh well together, but it’s wise not to leave that up to chance. Company retreats arguably have many benefits, but at the top of the list is spending time with one another and getting to know who you are working with on a personal level, which extends into understanding how to work best with them in a professional environment.

On the planning side, the best part of company retreats is that as long as you are able to accomplish the objectives for the event, you have the freedom to make it a unique, fun, memorable (in a good way of course), and ultimately, impactful. On the flip side, with so much potential to harness, deciding on the right scenario for your next corporate retreat can be challenging! As such, we’re more than happy to share a few of our own experiences that have been ideal in building our team and sharpening our vision.

Depending on the time you have to dedicate to a company retreat, you’ll find yourself considering both local places and those that would make for a great adventure out of city limits. Getting out of the office is critical, and not just out onto the lawn in front of your building. Think back to field trips you took as a child and it’s a sure bet that not only do you have fond memories of the place itself, but also the experiences—the learning and growth that takes place in a different environment. There’s nothing more freeing, restorative and stimulating than getting out of the confines of your day-in-day-out desk and into great outdoors; it’s literally a breath of fresh air, which is what you’re going for in terms of perspective.

A retreat possibility that requires a bit of a road trip is Bryson Airboat Tours, which is situated along the banks of the Platte River near Fremont, NE. With the group packages, you’ll not only have access to unlimited airboat rides during your scheduled time, but there’s a nice area set up for guests that accommodates groups of all sizes. Amenities included are a grilling area with plenty of tables and seating, horseshoe pits, sand volleyball, swimming in the river, bean bag toss, and you are also welcome to bring games of your own or set up various activities for your attendees to take part in while they’re not on the airboat.

Bryson - Bryson’s Airboat Tours - headshot

Bryson’s Airboat Tours

“In terms of finding something unique, truly just hopping on one of our tour boats and going for an airboat ride is going to be a completely different experience for anybody,” emphasizes Bryson, owner of Bryson’s Airboat Tours ( “Our three hours of fun package is the most popular, and while the airboat rides are generally the highlight of the outing for most, I’ve seen so many different ways that our guests have utilized the outdoor space for team-building activities that have been a big hit. As a word of advice, for anyone who chooses to have an outdoor event in Nebraska, consider spending money on renting a tent just in case, whether it’s shelter from a sporadic rain shower that pops up or to have a designated place to get out of the sun for a bit, especially in July and August.”

James Ballard - James Arthur Vineyards - headshot

James Ballard
James Arthur Vineyards

Along the same lines of enjoying the relaxing properties of the great outdoors and the flexibility of events in that element, James Arthur Vineyards is another wonderful destination for a company retreat, as you can enjoy the natural beauty of the estate along with their delicious wines. Moreover, the facilities on-site offer a warm and relaxed atmosphere that’s ideal for breakthrough thinking and highly effective meetings. James Arthur Vineyards is the largest winery in Nebraska, and is located near Raymond about 10 miles from downtown Lincoln, which makes it a close enough trip to be able to get out of the city without breaking the bank on travel expenses. “We can host any size group, and offer tours of our grounds and facilities, samples of our award-winning wines or scheduled tastings, and an opportunity to unwind with your co-workers,” says James Ballard, owner of James Arthur Vineyards ( “We have several private party spaces featuring comfortable furnishings, rich décor, spectacular views that have been popular among companies booking meetings and retreats, and we do have customized catering options as well as access to A/V equipment and WiFi. Every summer we host special events at James Arthur Vineyards that could easily be incorporated into a company event too.”

For those who want to stay close to home, there are plenty of great places to host your next company retreat in town as well.

The Lied Center for Performing Arts is one of the cultural highlights of our city, and as such, many of us are well aware of the wealth of amazing shows brought to Lincoln each season. What’s even better in terms of offerings for local businesses and organizations is that there are plenty of customized options for corporate events at the Lied Center, company retreats included.

headshot Bill Stephan - Lied Center for Performing Arts

Bill Stephan
Lied Center for Performing Arts

“Companies can arrange to hold their retreats in one of the Lied Center’s spaces and attend a world-class show later in the evening,” says Bill Stephan, Executive Director of the Lied Center for Performing Arts ( “A live performance will take your event from memorable to unforgettable.  Businesses that really want to add a special touch can also sponsor a show, which often includes a meet and greet with artists along with photo opportunities. All of these options are surprisingly affordable as well.

Furthermore, when it comes to making the arrangements, the Lied Center has a top-notch events staff that is always happy to help event planners and companies planning a special event. We can make catering recommendations and connect you with local artists who can provide unique entertainment for your event among things. The Lied Center allows event clients to choose their own caterer, which can be particularly helpful to companies on a budget or those looking to tailor their event to their staff’s preferences and corporate culture.”

When asked about the key things he feels to be important to take into consideration when planning a company retreat, Stephan notes, “Location is so important. The Lied Center’s downtown location, and a central spot between UNL and the Historic Haymarket/Railyard District makes it ideal for attendees who will enjoy being able to walk to the venue from their hotels and the easy access to Lincoln’s nightlife and restaurant scene. Few venues in Lincoln share the distinctive culture, prime location and breathtaking views that the Lied Center can provide for a company retreat.”

If you’re thinking about a fun activity that incorporates a little bit of healthy competition and also something that most people feel comfortable with participation, you generally can’t go wrong with one of America’s favorite pastimes – bowling! “Taking a day at the bowling center is a fantastic way to give your group a reprieve from the office setting,” says Jennifer Davis-Korn of 48 Bowl ( “You can start your day in one of our private meeting rooms, cater breakfast or lunch, then work your way to the lanes! We offer free WiFi and projection screens if needed. If it’s pure fun and team building games you’re after, bowling is one of the great activities that anyone can play. We can help you organize your group, enter names, calculate scores, and even give you modified scoring games like 9-Pin No Tap to level the playing field. We love groups of all sizes and will reserve as few as one lane or as many as twenty-four. If you’re not sure what your budget will accommodate, give us a call and we can talk you through all of your options. Parkway Lanes can be reached at (402) 483-7763 or to get in touch with Hollywood Bowl, call (402) 466-1911. If you prefer to start your research on our website, visit”

For the perfect mix of getting outdoors for fresh air and fun times, staying active, adventuring to a number of locations as you see fit, engaging in conversation in an environment that’s conducive to brainstorming and the exchange of ideas, and simply enjoying one another’s company, there’s nothing better to accomplish any or all of these objectives than a Group Therapy Bike Tour! Now offering a Conference Bike seating up to six people along with the original 15-passenger bike, you could opt for mini breakout sessions with smaller groups as a part of your event or take advantage of the larger bike as a mobile conference table—the options are endless and the creative minds that brought the unique concept of Group Therapy Bike Tours to Lincoln are also excellent at making suggestions for unique events and uses of the bike too, making planning that much

As thinking outside the box and solving problems together are important in any workplace, it makes sense to cultivate those skills during your chosen teambuilding event, while also adding in the components of fun and excitement to promote engagement. Covering all of these bases, Escape Lincoln is an activity that by design will unite your team as they rise to the challenge.

Headshot - Abby Bartholomew - Escape Lincoln

Abby Bartholomew
Escape Lincoln

Abby Bartholomew, Co-Creator of Escape Lincoln ( advises, “Escape Lincoln is the perfect place for your group to use their teamwork skills outside of the normal workspace. In a fun, casual atmosphere, teams can learn more about their individual work styles and how the composition of the team contributes to the success of the common goals.

Escape rooms are a unique chance to participate as a group in a real-life adventure game. Groups are locked in a room and by using the elements around them, solve a series of puzzles, find clues, or piece together answers that help them ‘escape’ within a set amount of time. Team members get to know each other, work together, strategize, and problem-solve to stretch their collaboration muscles and enrich the overall team. We offer three different escape rooms that can accommodate up to 18 participants at one time (6 people per room) and can plan for multiple waves of groups, allowing us to host teams and events of all sizes.”

Events that encourage creativity have wide-ranging benefits, and another great example of an activity that promotes growth in this area is art. ArtGlass Unlimited ( has a variety of offerings that could be thoughtfully incorporated into a company retreat event. These fun experiences provide an interactive way to get the creative juices flowing and an outlet that greatly helps with stress relief. As far as the take-aways, participants will leave with something they’ve created that they can proudly display at home or in the workplace, in addition to what they’ve learned from observing their co-workers’ expression of individuality during the process of making unique pieces of art and from the time spent together as a group.

As company retreats are, as a rule of thumb and key to their efficacy, held off-site, you’ll want to make sure your attendees needs are met as far as a meal or snack so that you keep their energy up and attention where it needs to be. Aside from the practical aspect of avoiding a group full of grumbling tummies, there’s also the opportunity to play up your theme, get creative and serve up something that’s going to be a big hit with your team.

Headshot - Shelby Bartels - Attitude on Food

Shelby Bartels
Attitude on Food

“One of the most important things to consider when planning a company retreat is how to keep everyone well-fed and energized,” emphasizes Shelby Bartels, Event Producer for Attitude on Food ( “Whether employees spend the day attending breakout sessions or teambuilding on a high ropes course, they’re going to want plenty of food throughout the day. Everything from the morning coffee station to the late-night snack can make an employee’s day. The desired atmosphere is also important. Some company retreats are peaceful and quite while others are high energy with packed schedules. Once you decide on the overall atmosphere, every other aspect of the event should have the same vibe. This includes the food and beverages. Interactive stations and a buffet create completely different atmospheres, so it is important to know your audience and the ambiance you’re trying to create.

Interactive stations are by far my favorite option for company retreats. They are completely customizable and can be made to fit the theme or goals of your retreat. Companies looking for a health-conscious option will love a salad martini bar or trail mix station. Our homemade chicken finger and mac ‘n’ cheese stations are great ways to loosen guests up and will bring out the kid in everyone. My personal favorite is our blender bike station. Guests can blend their own smoothie or signature drink by riding the bike!

No matter what you have in mind, I’m here to put together the perfect menu for these events. Whether it’s breakfast, lunch, dinner, or any combinations of the three, our mission is to ensure there is enough amazing food to satisfy every guest. This includes creating a menu for guests with dietary restrictions. The last thing I want is for anyone to feel left out around the table. Beyond the food, I can also help coordinate rentals, create a floor plan, arrange centerpieces, and put together a timeline.”

When asked to provide a final piece of advice for our readers, she quickly responds, “Have fun! If everyone in the office enjoys donuts together on Friday, who says breakfast can’t consist of a donut bar? Take the opportunity to try different foods and offer unique experiences.”

In addition to nourishment, there are other things that can greatly help with ensuring everyone is in the right state of mind to be an engaged participant. Consider massage as another example, as it’s incorporated more and more into the corporate world due to its wide-ranging benefits.

Headshot - Erin Lange - 5 Elements Massage

Erin Lange
5 Elements Massage

“There are so many things that massage can add to a company event,” emphasizes Erin Lange, LMT and owner of 5 Elements Massage ( “A 10-15 minute chair massage can wake you up better than a cup of coffee, and can also be helpful to someone stuck in a creative rut.  Even a 5 minute arm/hand massage can change a person’s mood for the better.”

She adds, “For a lot of people, it’s common not to take the time to relax; there is always something else more important than worrying about themselves. When companies show that they care as much about the health and wellbeing of their employees as they do about reaching strategic objectives, it goes a long way. As either an exciting surprise or something for your team to look forward to, having a massage therapist on-hand at a retreat could greatly help to improve attitude and disposition. With positive reinforcement from the therapist, it can help drive a person to make wiser choices as well, benefitting both parties in the long run, far after the company retreat has ended. Having a massage chair and portable table, I can do more than work with my hands; the bamboo that can be utilized is very portable as well.  Music could be offered to set the mood, and best of all, the massage can take place anywhere!”

The landscape of corporate retreats has changed so much in the contemporary world of business; there’s so much more out there to take advantage of and far less confines as to what constitutes a model event. By focusing on creating an enjoyable environment that’s conducive to natural interaction as opposed to forced or contrived exchanges, and by incorporating equal elements of fun and goal-oriented, guided initiatives, you’ll bring your team together and allow them to find common ground and a greater understanding of how they fit into the scheme of things while reinforcing company culture, which is the ultimate goal.