Hastings is a city and the county seat of Adams County, Nebraska, United States. The population was 24,907 at the 2010 census. It is known as the town where Kool-Aid was invented by Edwin Perkins in 1927, and celebrates that event with the Kool-Aid Days festival every August. Hastings is also known for Fisher Fountain, and during World War II operated the largest Naval Ammunition Depot in the United States.
Hastings was founded in 1872 at the intersection of the Burlington and Missouri River Railroad and the St. Joseph and Denver City Railroad. It was named for Colonel D. T. Hastings of the St. Joseph and Grand Island Railroad, who was instrumental in building the railroad through Adams County. The area was previously open plain: the Donner party passed through on its way to California in 1846 and a pioneer cemetery marker in Hastings bears an inscription taken from Tamsen Donner's journal: "The country between the Blue and the Platte is beautiful beyond compare. Never have I seen so varied a country so suitable to cultivation." In the 1870s, railroads lured European immigrants to the new state of Nebraska with advertisements.