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Sparks whitewater kayak park preview

Most people still don’t understand why I choose to spend SO much time in Reno, NV. Until they come to visit all I can do is tell them about the awesome outdoor community and the easy access to outdoor amenities.

This week just downstream of the current whitewater park (the Truckee River Whitewater Park in downtown Reno) another was completed (the Truckee River Whitewater Park at Rock Park in Sparks). Though it is still not officially open I had the chance to test out the new features – and yes I got to be the first (there has to be some perks to being the world champ). This is the kind of park you want to bring your kids to: a picnic on the grass, swimming in the deep eddies.

I know I’ll be spending heaps of time here in the near future as they’ve managed to build a nice little wave for me to train on – thank you Jim and Mike!

- Re-post courtesy of world champion kayaker Ruth Gordon

Check out this video of Ruth on the wave of  “Double D,” one of the park features:

Pro Wakeboard Tour stops at Sparks Marina

The MasterCraft  Pro Wakeboard Tour is coming to Sparks for the final stop of the 2008 season July 11-13. The sport’s top pros have one more chance at the podium before the final awards ceremony at John Ascuaga’s Nugget on the 13th.

The action will be held at the Sparks Marina, with athletes from more than 20 states and seven nations.

Event schedule:
Friday, July 11

  • 10 am: Jr. Men Quarterfinals
  • Noon-4 pm: Pro Men Qualifying

Saturday, July 12

  • 8:30 am: Pro Women QualifyingS
  • 10:30 am: Jr. Men Semifinals
  • 12:30 pm: Pro Women Semifinals
  • 1:30pm-4:30 pm: Pro Men Round of 30

Sunday, July 13

  • 10 am: Pro Men Quarterfinals
  • Noon: Jr. Men Finals
  • 1 pm: Pro Men Semifinals
  • 2 pm: Pro Women Finals
  • 3-3:30 pm: Pro Men Finals
  • TBA: Awards Ceremony

* Schedule is subject to change

Among the awards being presented at the Nugget is the Indmar Performance Award, a $10,000 cash bonus to the top points earner in the Pro Men’s Division and a $5,000 prize for the Pro Women’s Division winner.

Rookie of the Year honors for the Pro Men’s Division will also be presented during the ceremony.

Reno River Festival rolls in for 2008!

The Reno River Festival starts today with registration and preparation for the main events on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The festival keeps getting better every year with a visitor-expo, great concessions and a rockin’ good time in the Northern Nevada Sun. This year the festival is introducing some new events like the Run Amuck race, whitewater clinics and more. Check out the festival Web site here, and watch a video interview with organizer Jim Litchfield (produced by the Tahoe World newspaper).

Get some spring turns before it’s too late

Spring skiingLocals refer to it as the “shoulder season” in the Sierra Nevada, the time between peak winter ski tourism and summer fun on Lake Tahoe’s beaches. But here’s a local secret: Some of the best (and least expensive) skiing happens in Spring.
This year started off strong with a flurry of cold storms that brought powder days and a large snowpack for the Sierra’s dozen-or-so resorts. Now that temperatures are in the 60s at higher altitude, the deep base is paying dividends of spring corn combined with good coverage.
Come up to the mountains for a visit to Reno-Tahoe, enjoy some of the best spring conditions we’ve had in years and take advantage of shoulder season travel deals. Check out our resorts page and plan your trip before it’s too late.

Erin 411!

Hello everyone and welcome once again to the vBlog that’s taking you around Reno and showing you where the locals go and what the locals know: that the Reno-Tahoe area is America’s Adventure Place! We’ve made some exciting updates to ERIN 411! and here’s a glimpse at what you’ll see on upcoming episodes:

Weeeee!!!!! You should be feeling really pumped!Now, the cool new changes we made to the show also caused a few delays. I know you’re out of snow season and looking forward to summer, but you’ll still enjoy this episode on Reno’s fun little Rink on the River:

Hope you enjoyed! As always, please leave us a comment and let us what you thought!ERIN 411!
The Show You Need To Know(because it’s awesome)

Van Halen is Coming to Town

In case you have not already heard the great news, Van Halen will be doing a concert at the Reno Events Center on April 17th.

Reno was chosen as one of only a handful of West Coast locations for this reunion tour to play in.

Tickets will go on sale 3.30.08 at 10 am and can be purchased via Ticketmaster

View the Reunion Press Conference below.

Check us out on Flickr

We’ve recently added a bunch of pics to the Reno-Tahoe Flickr site, so check out this slide show or click through to view them online. We’re always looking for new photos that showcase the best of Reno-Tahoe, so if you have some good ones we’d love to have them as part of our photo stream.

- Jim Scripps

Legends announces new retailers

The fountain at the Legends at Sparks Marina

The Legends at Sparks Marina, a new destination shopping center located at the Sparks Marina in Northern Nevada announced the commitment of more A-list retailers and restaurants to the development, scheduled to open Fall, 2008.

Companies that have committed so far include: Scheel’s All Sports (240,000 square feet), T-Rex, Adidas, America’s Roadhouse, BCBGirls, Brooks Brothers, Forever 21, Harry and David, Hot Dog Hall of Fame, Jazz, A Louisiana Kitchen, Lane Bryant, Off Broadway Shoes, Saddle Ranch Chop House, Sunglass Station, Saks Off Fifth, Nike, Tommy Hilfiger, Ann Taylor, AT&T, Banana Republic, Gap, Patsy Grimaldi’s Coal Brick-Oven Pizza, Dickinson Theatres + IMAX, The Big Bang Dueling Piano Bar, Strasburg Children, Tuscanos Brazilian Grill, Blowfish Sushi, Hofbrauhaus, Olive Garden, Best Buy, Deegie’s Carma, Jones New York, Anne Klein, Easy Spirit, Nine West and Mountain Family RV.

The development also includes a 1,000-room upscale casino-resort-spa.

-Jim Scripps

Play ball!

baseball groundbreaking

The years-long struggle to bring a Triple A minor league baseball to Reno came one step closer to becoming reality this week with groundbreaking for a new baseball stadium and retail complex that will eventually be home to a development team for the Arizona Diamondbacks major league franchise. The team, formerly named the Tucson Sidewinders, will relocate to Reno with the first pitch slated to be thrown in April, 2009.

Developers, local officials and team executives rolled out the red carpet at the site, hosting a crowd of 300 future fans and setting up a faux ball field with the promise that when the real field is finished next year, baseball fans will come – as many as 500,000 attendees over the course of 72 home games, said Stuart Katzoff, owner of SK Baseball, the partnership behind the project.

Plans for a baseball franchise add to the excitement of the urban renewal that has brought downtown Reno a new Riverwalk district, a whitewater kayak park, luxury condominiums, and top-shelf bars and restaurants, to add to existing gaming attractions. As part of the 6.5-acre stadium development, plans include a shopping plaza, giving visitors another reason to make their way downtown.
baseball rendering 1
What others are saying:

To see another rendering of the proposed development, visit Reno’s Downtown Makeover site here

Reno’s downtown baseball stadium district (Reno and its Discontents)

Reno: baseball groundbreaking (The Urban Blog)

New Triple A team will be D-Backs affiliate, Big turnout for stadium groundbreaking (Reno Gazette-Journal)
Reno Baseball Website!!!

– Jim Scripps

Get ready for Kayak season!

Though there are some hart core paddlers who get out in the at night in the dead of winter storms, the good stuff is coming this spring. The above average snow pack and full reservoirs up-stream are going to make for an awesome Kayaking season. Maybe this will be the year I finally get into it.

This video from X-Terra Planet should get your blood moving as the days get longer and and the snow starts melting…