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Norfolk Real Estate

Though Norfolk, NE is considered a small town, it continues to punch above its weight with a robust selection of things to do, including endless fun out on the water, pristine golf courses, and a thriving arts community. Located in Northeastern Nebraska, the city boasts a strong labor force and leading employers, a rich pioneering history, a safe, welcoming atmosphere conducive for raising a family, and so much more.


More than 150 years ago, a scouting party of German settlers made their way down to the Nebraska Territory from Wisconsin in search of more productive, inexpensive farmland on which to stake their claim under the Homestead Act. They set out from Omaha, following the Elkhorn river. Finding the West Point area too crowded, these settlers marched further up the Elkhorn until it joined with the North Fork river—the perfect spot. The scouts reported the good news back to their community in Ixonia, Wisconsin, and in 1866, 44 families (124 settlers total) made their way down in three wagon trains to found the town of Norfolk.

North Fork and Norfolk—clearly, the river inspired the town’s name, but why the difference? Initially, the town did take its name straight from the river, but soon after shortened it to the easiest one-word compound, “Norfork.” The local post office, however, sought to correct what it believed to be a misspelling, and changed the official address to ‘Norfolk.’

Nowadays, locals still stubbornly refuse to accept that 19th century ‘fix,’ and proudly pronounce the town’s name as “Nor-fork” (providing an easy way to discern the visitors from the true locals). This commitment to the original pronunciation is just one example of Norfolk’s multifaceted spirit: Remembering what’s real and valuable, even if Time has forgotten it.


The city of Norfolk, NE can accommodate the drive of an adventurous and outdoorsy trailblazer just as well as it can suit the tastes of an art lover who delights in summer strolls downtown.

The confluence of rivers creates a nature lover’s niche. Those interested in exploring the Elkhorn River and Skyview Lake can rent kayaks, tubes & canoes from NorthFork Outfitting for 2-hour, 4-hour, or full-day trips. Skyview Lake is a community focal point, serving as the locale for such events as the city’s annual fireworks display and Music in the Park series.

The Eldorado Golf Course—just five miles south of town—offers a semi-private 18-hole, Par 72 course and updated clubhouse with lovely views. Serious golfers can have a heyday on this premier course while fun-seekers of any sort will enjoy The Eldorado’s miniature golf course.

The Elkhorn Valley Museum not only hosts the Nebraska Music Hall of Fame (proudly displaying greats like Jimi Hendrix collaborator Buddy Miles and ‘50s rocker Dennis Volk), it’s also home to the Johnny Carson exhibit; visitors can relish in the vibrant life of America’s pioneering late night talk show host, who spent most of his formative years in Norfolk. Don’t forget to bring the kids to the museum’s awesome Discovery Zone, and check out its birding library.

The Norfolk Arts Center (NAC) provides art classes for all skill levels and some truly wonderful revolving exhibits. NAC offers First Friday open mic nights and fun annual events like ‘Fork Fest, complete with a beer garden, artist sidewalk sale, and food truck rumble.

After an afternoon spent splashing around in Norfolk’s very own Aquaventure Water Park, unwind further by taking a walk on the Cowboy Trail—an abandoned rail corridor that’s been repurposed to serve as Nebraska’s first state recreational trail. Perfect for biking and horseback riding, the trail extends a total 321 miles to Chadron, NE, making it the longest Rail-to-Trail project in the United States.


Norfolk’s restaurants have garnered a reputation for quality and are beloved by out-of-town commuters and locals alike. Whether it’s the authentic Mexcian cuisine of El Rodeo, or the wood-fired favorites at Whiskey Creek, the city serves up something special for every palette. Here are some notable places to eat:

  • The 411 Restaurant and Lounge (All-American sandwiches, burgers, soups, and more)
  • Whiskey Creek (top-notch steakhouse and BBQ joint with an Old West ambience)
  • El Rodeo (hidden gem in downtown known mostly through word-of-mouth)
  • Black Cow Fat Pig Pub & Steak (steak, seafood, and barbecue pork nachos in a down-to-earth fine dining atmosphere)
  • Mongolian Grill (great family dining option offering noodles, sauces, and loads of veggies)


As of 2020, Norfolk’s population hovers around 25,000 residents, earning it a spot on the list of the state’s 10 most populous cities. The median age is 35 (slightly younger than Nebraska’s median age), and nearly half of all families here have children under 18 years old. The median property value is approximately $123,600, and the median household income is just under $47,000. Northeast Community College in Norfolk is the largest higher learning institution in Madison County, NE.


In addition to some of the amazing properties that routinely come onto the Norfolk market, the city is home to some stellar service providers whose professionalism has been valued greatly by homeowners. This includes establishments like Voight Locksmith, Inc., Volkman Plumbing and Heating Inc., Frohberg Electric, and many, many more. Whatever you need fixed in your home, we have trusted, local businesses that can assist you.


Here are a list of common questions that come up regarding Norfolk:

  • How far is Norfolk NE to Columbus NE?
  • What county is Norfolk, Nebraska?
  • Are there fees for pets in Norfolk?

Here at kwELITE, we’ve put together a team of the best Realtors in Columbus, Nebraska, who are dedicated to helping our clients buy, sell, or invest in real estate with confidence. We have years of experience in the business and know what it takes to get houses for sale in Columbus. No matter what your real estate needs are, kwELITE Columbus is here to serve them.