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Segway tours a unique way to see downtown Reno

Having heard about the Segway tours of downtown Reno I decided to give it a try.

I enlisted my daughter and a friend and made a reservation through the Silver Legacy Adventure Desk. They offer tours twice a day and we picked a weekend afternoon, 2 p.m. tour. We were joined by another couple visiting Reno-Tahoe and the five of us were ready for our adventure. They started us off with a short video on Segway operations then took each person, one at a time and helped us get on the machines. We figured out how to go forward and back, stop and turn, all while in the comfort of the hotel valet lobby, a safe place to get our feet wet.

After getting everyone “saddled up,” we headed out into the streets of downtown Reno with our capable guide. We cruised past the Great Italian Festival (that looked like fun and judging by the scents, great eating) over by the Reno Events Center (site of the Carlos Santana concert the night before) and the National Bowling Stadium.

They started us off in “turtle” mode, meaning that they had a governor on the Segway that would only allow a max of 3.5 mph. By the time we had gone these few blocks we were all feeling comfortable, having navigated corners and curbs, and our trusty guide turned turtle mode off.

Now we could really cruise!

Next we headed off towards the Pioneer Center for the Performing Arts and the courthouse where we learned a little about Reno history. Then we wheeled (is that a word?) down to the Nevada Museum of Art where we examined the horse sculpture.

From there we headed down Arlington Ave. (Wow, looks a lot more like a hill on a Segway than in a car. Lean back a little was the message). In Wingfield Park along the Truckee River we had a chance to do a little freewheeling (under the watchful eye of our leader). Then, because it was a brisk afternoon, we took a hot chocolate break, then headed upriver to Idlewild Park and its beautiful fall colors. By now we were cooking along at 10-12 mph, feeling pretty confident.

The tour includes two hours of riding following orientation.

When we arrived back at the Silver Legacy, our guide downloaded some pictures and gave us each a CD of the photos as a souvenir.

We had a blast! My 28-year-old daughter loved it. My friend did too. When I asked the other couple what they thought about it, they said it was a definite “do-over”. They’ll come back another day and do it again. Me too!

Give it a try. It’s easy to pick up and a lot of fun.

- Submitted by Ellie Oppenheim

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