Event organizers of The Great Reno Balloon Race, scheduled for Sept. 10 – 12at Rancho San Rafael Regional Park, have put together some helpful tips to ensure that all spectators have a wonderful weekend at the Balloon Race. Tips include important information on transportation to the event, where to park, what to wear and other dos and don’ts:
- Admission is free, but make sure to bring money for tethered rides, souvenirs or food and drink from a variety of vendors, including a VIP breakfast catered by High Pointe Catering.
- Dress in layers; September in northern Nevada tends to bring chilly mornings.
- Weather information is available at www.kkoh.com or News Talk 780.
- Arrive early on Saturday and Sunday, in time to watch the Glow Show at 5 a.m., to get VIP seating for a $5 donation, or prime blanket area for free.
- Please leave your pets at home. The abundance of people along with strange noises and surroundings can make animals anxious and confused.
- Smoking is always prohibited on the launch field.
- Don’t forget your camera so you can catch every moment of this spectacular event.
- Please remember to recycle while at the event, you’ll not only be keeping our community clean, but you’ll be helping out the NorthStar District Boy Scouts Troup #168, who will use the recycling as a fundraiser. The more you recycle the more money they’ll raise.
- Visit the kids play area on Balloon Boulevard, the vendor area, after Mass Ascension.
- Stay in your pajamas on Saturday, Sept. 11 for The World’s Largest Pajama Party. Come in your best (or worst) bed-head to enter in the Bed-Head Competition. Judging starts at 8 a.m. at the Pajama Party tent.
- There is a limited amount of parking at the event so be sure to arrive early. There is free parking available at the University’s north lots, but all cars must be removed by 10 a.m. Parking is also available at N. Sierra St. and McCarran Blvd. or the Coleman St. parking lot for a $5 donation to the Reno South Rotary Club children’s charities. Parking is prohibited along McCarran Blvd and violators will be towed.
- Transportation to and from the event is provided by RTC RIDE, which offers direct, nonstop service to the entrance of the park on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 11 and 12, from 4 to 10 a.m. Each of the three stops in downtown Reno, Reed High School in Sparks and the Reno Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority Convention Center on south Virginia, are serviced every 30 minutes. Round trip fares are $5 for adults and $2.50 for youth (ages 6 to 18) and seniors/disabled. For more information call (775) 348-RIDE.
- Handicap parking is available at the Washington St. entrance to the park for those with a handicapped placard or license plate.
- If you’d rather ride your bike to the event, you can leave it with the bike valet at the Washington St. entrance for a donation to the Reno Bike Project.
For a full schedule of events and more information about this year’s event, please visit www.renoballoon.comor call the Great Reno Balloon Race hotline at (775) 826-1181.
Thanks to the continued support of generous sponsors, The Great Reno Balloon Race continues as a free event for its 29th year. This year’s major sponsors include: Wells Fargo Bank, Wilbur D. May Foundation, Silver Legacy Resort Casino, Peppermill Hotel Casino, Harrah’s Reno, City of Reno, Jack in the Box, Great Basin Internet Services, News Talk 780 KOH, Bonanza Casino, Reno-Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority. With a special thanks to our Founding Sponsors: Circus Circus, IGT, Sands Regency Casino Hotel, Muckel Anderson CPAs and the University of Nevada, Reno.
-Written by Rebecca Wikler, special to VisitRenoTahoe