Welcome to Gretna, Nebraska
What is now known as Gretna, the state’s fastest-growing city for the fifth year in a row, began as the settlement of Forest City.
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Irish immigrants built several dugouts and log cabins in the area around 1850. In 1886, the settlers were forced to relocate three miles away when the Burlington railroad constructed a railroad line from Omaha to Ashland.
As legend has it, Gretna was named by railroad workers for the well-known Gretna Green community in Scotland. Gretna was incorporated in 1889 and the community began to grow. Gretna now boasts a population of nearly 4,000 and continues to grow rapidly.
Gretna Mayor Tim Gilligan and the city’s four council members strive to help Gretna retain its small-town feel, while at the same time remaining proactive about the growth and providing services to accommodate the city’s rapid increase in numbers.
Many young families come to Gretna for its prime location between Lincoln and Omaha and stay for the exceptional school district, whose students receive numerous awards in academics, the arts and athletics each year. The district has three elementary schools, one middle school and one high school. The district’s newest elementary school – Palisades Elementary – is located in the northeastern portion of the district and opened for the 2007-08 school year.
Six Gretna churches gather weekly for services at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, the Gretna United Methodist Church, Resurrection Lutheran Church, Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Gretna Community Church and Gretna Baptist Church.
Gretna offers a municipal pool, the Gretna Public Library and recreational facilities at four parks. Residents can become active in the community in a variety of youth and adult athletic leagues, a volunteer fire and rescue department and a variety of other clubs and organizations.
The Nebraska Crossing Outlet Center, along Interstate 80 near Gretna, offers nearly 40 retail shops and services. From clothing to books to kitchenware and more, it can be found at Nebraska Crossing. The city’s businesses offer a variety of ways for Gretna residents to “Spend Your Green in Gretna.”