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4th of July Festivities in Reno Tahoe USA

Courhouse at NightCan you believe we are officially more than half-way through the year? Time sure flies when you’re having fun in Reno Tahoe USA – and the fun happens 365 days a year here, by the way.

This weekend it’s time to celebrate our nation’s independence, and Reno Tahoe USA is packed with more barbecues, shows and family events than the biggest firework you’ve ever seen! Approximately 34.9 million Americans plan to travel this weekend. We’re willing to bet 33.9 of those wish they were here.

 We’ve put together a list of weekend festivities – from history-making celebrations, to music in the park, to the longest, most spectacular fireworks show in our region – we’re sure to have something for everyone. With daytime highs in the mid-80’s to low-90’s, whip out your red, white and blue – it’s time to get outside!

 ARTOWN – July 4th Weekend Events

Pops at the Ranch with the Reno Philharmonic Orchestra

Saturday, July 3, 8 p.m., FREE, Robert Z. Hawkins Amphitheater, 6000 Bartley Ranch Road, 775-323-6393

To kick off the Reno Philharmonic’s summer concerts, the Reno Philharmonic Orchestra will perform patriotic music to get the crowd ready for the 4th of July weekend. The orchestra is led by Jason Altieri, conductor of the Reno Philharmonic Youth Orchestras and the UNR orchestra. For more information, click here.

SwedenCelebrates Virginia City with the Sigtuna Brass Sextet

Saturday, July 3, 7 p.m., Tickets $7.50 and $15

Pipers Opera House, Virginia City, 775-847-0433

Due to some key Swedish inventions like dynamite, nitro-glycerin and even the match, Virginia City was able to flourish. Alfred Nobel was pleased with Virginia City’s applications of his inventions for mining purposes. The Sigtuna Brass Sextet portrays the experience of those early days in uniform playing instruments and music of the day while celebrating Virginia City and the nation it helped build. For more information, click here.

 Patriotic American Fourth Concert, a Family Affair with MasterWorks Chorale

Sunday, July 4, 4 p.m., FREE, Wingfield Park, 1st St. & Arlington Ave., 775-324-1940

The MasterWorks Choralepresents a 4th of July patriotic and American folk music concert. Special music such as “Stars Spangled Banner,” “When I First came to this Land,” “Oh Susannah,” “Camptown Races,” “When Johnny Comes Marching Home” and “Shenandoah”, plus the well-known “Battle Hymn of the Republic.”  It’s music and fun for the whole family. For more information on Artown, click here or call the office at 775-322-1538.

Sparks, Nevada 4th of July Extravaganza

The Sparks Marina will be open for swimming from 2:00 to 6:00 p.m., and of course the newest whitewater park in Reno Tahoe USA is open to everyone!

The region’s preeminent holiday celebration and fireworks display – Star Spangled Sparks – takes place on Sunday, July 4, on Victorian Square in downtown Sparks. This 11th annual celebration of family and freedom is highlighted by a 20-minute state-of-the-art pyrotechnic display, framed by the Nugget’s picturesque hotel towers, making the fiery light exhibition the longest and most spectacular show in the region.

The activities start on Victorian Square at 4 p.m., with kid’s rides, multiple food and drink vendors and a National Guard flyover. Fireworks begin at approximately 9:30 p.m. The Legends at Sparks Marina will run a shuttle from the shopping center to the Marina from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

FireworksNorth Tahoe July 4th Celebrations

Gene Hamilton’s BetterRide Downhill Camp to Northstar Resort

Date: Jul 2 (Fri) – Jul 4, 2010 (Sun)

BetterRide is putting on a 3-day downhill mountain bike camp at Northstar-at-Tahoe Resort. This is an amazing opportunity to learn from one of the most experienced coaches in the sport. Learn to rail corners like Mitch Ropelato; fly through rock gardens like Graeme Pitts and race like Greg Minnaar. Sign up soon as this camp is limited to 14 riders to ensure the optimal athlete coach ratio! Designed for downhill racers and riders, this Downhill Camp focuses on the core skills that the BetterRide coached pros use, mental preparation and of course, FUN. For more information on costs, rules and registration email betterride@gmail.com or call 970.261.1869.

Tahoe Star Tours ~ War & Love Meet in the Sky at Northstar Resort

Date: Friday, Jul 2, 2010, 8:30pm-10:30pm

Guests interested in taking advantage of the resort’s unique mountain setting which is ideal for star gazing may choose to participate in a Tahoe Star Tour. Led by star guide Amateur Astronomer Tony Berendsen, these evening sky tours take guests on a trip across the heavens. Tours are highly interactive and allow guests to have a hands-on experience at amateur astronomy. Tahoe Star Tours meet at the top of the Highlands Gondola at the Ritz-Carlton Destination Club. From there, guests are escorted to the viewing location on the deck of the Big Springs Day Lodge, located mid-mountain at Northstar-at-Tahoe Resort. Proper walking footwear is recommended. There is a cost to participate. All tours include a commemorative flashlight. For more information or reservations, click here.

Free Show! Austin Blues Great Carolyn Wonderland

Date: Jul 2, 2010 (Fri) at Crystal Bay Casino, Crystal Bay, NV, 10:00 p.m.

Carolyn Wonderland is the real deal. She’s an amazing guitar and trumpet musician and can she sing! A dollop of Janis Joplin, a slice of Stevie Ray Vaughan, and a big load of soulful individuality… that’s Wonderland, a seething-hot Texas singer-guitarist. For more information, click here.

Kings Beach’s 2010 Music Series, Kings Beach, CA

Date: Jul 2, (Fri) – Aug 20, 2010 (Fri)

The lineup has been confirmed for the 2010 Kings Beach Music on the Beach series. Local favorites the Blues Monsters will again kick off the series at the opening show on July 2. The ALWAYS FREE music series kicks off Friday, July 2 and runs every Friday, 6:30-8:30 p.m., until Aug. 20 at the Kings Beach State Recreation Area. The Trey Stone Band is slated for the series finale on Aug. 20. For the complete lineup call (530) 546-9000 or click here.

Red, White and Tahoe Blue Tahoe July 2-4 Events! Various Locations in Incline Village, NV

Date: Jul 2, 2010 (Fri)

This weekend event includes festivities during both day and night with all types of patriotic activities – barbecues, pancake breakfast, opening ceremonies, dress up doggie contest and Fireworks on the 4th. It’s fun for everyone! For all of the details, click here.

Run to the Beach: 5K and 10K ~ Starting at the North Tahoe Regional Park

Date: Jul 4, 2010 (Sun), 8:00 a.m.

Run to the Beach 5 and 10k starts at the North Tahoe Regional Park. From the park you have an option of participating in the 5 or 10k distance both of which finish on the “Big” beach in Kings Beach, CA. Kings Beach is a great place to spend your July 4th weekend. Fireworks are scheduled for the evening of July 3rd. For more information, clik here.

Reno July 4th Celebrations

Reno Aces

The Reno Aces return to Reno for July 4th for a four-game run against the Sacramento River Cats. Festivities will start at 2:00 p.m.

Although Sunday’s 6:35 game is completely sold out, fans are welcome to join the festivities on the plaza in front of Aces Ballpark beginning at 2 p.m. The plaza will be home to inflatables for kids, water balloon and potato sack races, a visit from Archie and more.

In addition, the newly-opened Beer Garden at the Freight House District will be holding volleyball and bocce ball tournaments throughout the afternoon. The Harters will play a pregame concert at 3:45 p.m., and a number of Aces players will participate in an autograph session at 4:30 p.m.

Fans are also welcome to view the game and the postgame fireworks show at the Freight House District, located at Aces Ballpark, from inside Bugsy’s Sports Bar and Grill, outside on the Bugsy’s Sports Bar Patio or on one of the more than 30 high-definition flat-screen televisions located throughout the Freight House District. Open year-round and seven days a week regardless of whether the Aces have a game or not, the Freight House District will be one of the premier viewing locations for the much-anticipated Aces Ballpark Independence Day fireworks show.

Grand Sierra Resort, Reno -Centennial Celebration: Johnson vs. Jeffries

Exactly one hundred years ago on this July 4, the whole world was watching Reno, Nevada, in perhaps one of the most important events in American Boxing History. 20-thousand boxing fans from around the world poured into Reno to witness the “Battle of the Century”. (That was 5-thousand more people than Reno’s population at the time!) It was a matchup between Jim Jeffries and Jack Johnson, the first African American to hold the World Heavyweight Championship. Johnson was an intimidating boxer and was considered a pariah amongst white America because of his refusal to live his life according to the bigoted social norms prevalent during 1910.

Now, exactly 100 years later, the city of Reno will honor the legacy of this most famous of fights with a three-day celebration, July 2-4, 2010, featuring boxing celebrities, family members of those involved in the original fight, as well as live professional boxing at the Grand Sierra Resort, which will be aired by Fox Sports Net.

The list of professional boxers includes Reno native and super middleweight Joey Gilbert (19-2, 15 KOs), former Jr. flyweight champion Ulises Solís (30-2, 21 KOs) and undefeated up-and-coming middleweight Brandon “Flawless” Gonzales (12-0, 9 Kos).

Visitors to the 100-year anniversary celebration will have the opportunity to tour the original fight site as well as the locations of both Johnson’s and Jeffries’ pre-fight training camps.

Dates, times and more details about these and other events planned for the Johnson-Jeffries 100-year anniversary celebration can be found here , along with more history of the original fight and information about lodging packages available for the weekend.

RSCC FireworksPeppermill Resort Casino

July 3, don’t miss an exciting night of Rock! Arnel Pineda of “Journey” plays his Love To Rock concert with Rachelle Ann Go and the Ammo Band in Peppermill’s state-of-the-art Tuscany Event Center. Ticket prices start at $48 and are available online or on site at Peppermill’s Information Booth or Hotel Front Desk, or by phone at (877) 525-7469.  Doors open at 7pm.

 Eldorado and Silver Legacy Resort Casino

There’s quite a bit to do at the Eldorado and Silver Legacy for 4th of July weekend. Here’s the rundown:

The Eldorado:
“Shake, Rattle & Roll” – Special Summer Pricing, tickets starting at just $19.95 for adults

Silver Legacy:
Cafe Sedona – All American Burger and Fries, with Soda $6 with beer $8
Bud and Bud Light $2.50 at all casino bars

Co-Sponsored Events:
The Great International Chicken Wing Society Cook Off – July 3-5 on Virginia St.

It’s spiciest, most affordable 4th of July festival to ever hit Downtown Reno—Silver Legacy Resort Casino is hosting the 9th Annual Great International Chicken Wing Society Cook-off on Virginia Street this 4th of July weekend!

From Saturday, July 3 to Monday, July 5 you’ll have a chance to sample the best sauces, taste top-notch wings and watch the best in the business compete for poultry pride. Nearly a dozen restaurants and bars will be on hand to compete, including last year’s defending champ from right here in Nevada, the “Havin’ an Affair” sweet and spicy sauce from Las Vegas. For more information, click here.

Chinese Concert – July 4 at the Reno Ballroom, 8 p.m.

Vietnamese Concert – July 4 at the Pioneer Center, 6 p.m.

Pops in the Park, presented by the Sierra Philharmonic League
Reno Philharmonic Orchestra, Jason Altieri conducting
July 4, 4:30 p.m. Mormon State Park, Genoa NV, FREE
The Reno Philharmonic Orchestra has performed at “Pops in the Park” in Genoa to capacity crowds for over 25 years, and could be a best kept secret in Reno. The Sierra Philharmonic League organizes the family friendly event with clowns, strolling musicians, along with silent and live auctions.

Men’s Journal Names Reno among Top 25 Places to Live

Mens Journal.jpgIf you live in Reno or have been lucky enough to visit, you know it’s a no-brainer. It’s a great getaway, let alone a fantastic place to reside. There’s never a dull moment in the Biggest Little City, from year-round entertainment, recreational options galore and all at an affordable cost. Men’s Journal Magazine recognizes Reno’s AAA Aces ballpark, the Riverwalk District, Artown and the city’s proximity to abundant outdoor recreations as several reasons why Reno had to be among the top 25 cities for “Best Places to Live 2010”, according to the April issue of Men’s Journal magazine.

The top 25 cities were included in various categories and determined by three variables including median home price, cost of living compared to the rest of the United States and number of sunny days per year.  Reno is featured as tops for “Ski and Climb Without the Crowds” listing Reno’s median home price as $274,670, its cost of living as 13 percent higher than the rest of the nation, and boasting 252 sunny days per year.

“Having Reno named one of the best places to live is a huge honor for our city and residents,” said Reno Mayor Bob Cashell.  “We all know why we love this place, but the national recognition helps build credibility for our city as a top place to live, work and raise a family.  It also gets the word out about what makes our city so special including our downtown baseball park, Artown and burgeoning downtown.”

“Reno making a top places to live list helps increase awareness nationwide that Reno Tahoe is a happening place where locals and visitors alike can enjoy all this area offers, from downtown fun to high altitude adventure.” said Ellen Oppenheim, Reno Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority (RSCVA) President and CEO.  “The recent investment in area hotel-casino properties, spas and restaurants are additional outstanding amenities locals and visitors can take advantage of.”

The April issue of Men’s Journal featuring the “Best Places to Live 2010” is on newsstands now or visit www.mensjournal.com.

Men’s Journal has previously ranked Reno’s historic Old Southwest as one of ‘The Best Neighborhoods in America’ in their June 2009 issue.

We’ve been tooting our own horn for a while. It’s nice to get some validation, though, dontcha think?

Soweto Gospel Choir brings African Spirit to Reno

soweto-gospel-choirAny choir that has a million and a half views on YouTube must be something special.  The Soweto Gospel Choir has that and more, and they’re performing in Reno this Friday.  I decided to check them out online before seeing them in person, and they exude some pretty exciting energy.

The group’s repertoire ranges from traditional African gospel songs, to covers of Bob Dylan.

Speaking of choirs, I’ve heard that the RSCVA and Artown are joining forces to host choirs from around the world during the 2011 American International Choral Festival in Reno.  The festival will bring choirs of all ages and nationalities together, giving us the opportunity to see choral music performed in the streets along the downtown River walk.  That’ll be in May of 2011.

The Soweto Gospel Choir concert is part of Artown’s Encore Series, which is what they call the events that happen outside of the usual Artown schedule of July 1-31.  You can catch the choir and a preview of the International Choral Festival on Friday, March 26th at the Grand Sierra Resort in Reno.

11th Annual Pacific Island Festival comes to Reno

pacificfestival_900x325Celebrate the vibrant cultures of the Pacific Rim during the 11th Annual Pacific Island Festival of Reno, July 24-26. Opening Ceremonies kick off Friday, July 24 at 3 p.m. and the festival continues Saturday, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. and Sunday, 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. All festivities will be on the Downtown Plaza on 4th and Virginia Street and inside the Reno Ballroom.

Part of Reno’s Artown Celebration, this free event is presented by Pacific Exchange Productions and Silver Legacy Resort Casino. The Opening Ceremony features the blowing of the conch shell and a performance by Tahitian dance ensemble ‘Ote’a ‘Api to the roaring sounds of Toere and Pahu, Tahitian drums. Entertainment, dancing, contests and great food will be served all weekend long.

For more information about the Pacific Island Festival of Reno, call 1-800-687-8733 or visit online at www.silverlegacy.com.

Artown’s ‘Little Book’ available in advance of month-long event

little-book-2The Little Book of Artown, a free pocket guide for all that is Artown, the nation’s most comprehensive arts Festival held in Reno, Nev., is now available. Covering every event, every hour for the entire month of July, the Little Book of Artown is a one-stop guide to the more than 400 events held at more than 100 locations.

The 2009 festival calendar boasts on average eight unique free events each day and includes international musical performances, national dance, theater, multi-cultural events, family and youth activities and entertainment, hands-on workshops for emerging artists and more.

Designed to point art lovers in the right direction, the Little Book of Artown is available at the Artown office, located at 300 E. Second St., ground floor as well as other locations throughout downtown Reno. If you’re from out fo the area and want more information on Artown – including a downloadable version of the Little Book – visit www.RenoIsArtown.com or call 775-322-1538.

Reno gearing up for Artown 2009

Recognized as one of the most comprehensive art festivals in the country by the National Endowment for the Arts, Artown brings more than 400 events to downtown Reno, Nev., for an extraordinary showcase of theater, dance, film and history as well as multi-cultural, musical, visual and performing arts.

Now in its 14th year, Artown expands its month-long event into a 32-day festival transforming the city into a summer epicenter of cultural entertainment. Launching Artown into the month-long cultural celebrations, the festival’s July 1 opening night brings Richie Havens, the artist that opened Woodstock 40 years ago.

This year’s Artown Opening Extravaganza includes a children’s hands-on printmaking workshop with festival artist Candace Nicol, face painting for children with Body Masterpiece and a performance by Havens. The festival continues with the nationally recognized and multi-faceted Aspen Santa Fe Ballet July 24 and ”Queen of Bluegrass” Rhonda Vincent and the Rage with opening band Contraband July 25.

A number of Festival favorites return including the Family Series, Monday Night Music Series, World Music Series, Dancing in the Park, Rollin’ on the River music series, Movies in the Park, Artown After Dark and the Discover the Arts children’s series. Artown’s Closing Night, which has grown year after year to now rival opening night, brings Motown stars The Funk Brothers to Wingfield Park on what festival organizers are dubbing July 32 (Aug. 1) to wrap up the festival’s 14th year on a Saturday.

For schedule details or to advance order a FREE copy of the Little Book of Artown, visit www.RenoIsArtown.com or call 775-322-1538.

Art Slaves 2008 – bringing freedom of expression to Reno

Recently I was able to visit the Artists Reception for Art Slaves 2008, a display of “anything goes” artwork, including; paintings, sculptures, mixed medium, fashion, photography and performance art.

The art and conversation was thought provoking, and meeting the artists was a blessing.  I always enjoy talking to the artists to see what they were thinking when the created the pieces, and then comparing that to how I see them.

If you are interested in art, or want to see what several local artists have presented, please visit the Montage Gallery at 155 West Second Street in Reno, Nevada.

Reno is Artown during July

Artown, one of the premier arts festivals in the west, is on its way to a banner year with great opening acts at the beginning of July, with more than 300 performances, many of them free, planned throughout the month.

Preservation Hall Jazz Band brought the flavor of New Orleans to Wingfield Park on July 2 with a free concert that had the crowd dancing, clapping and be-bopping along. The smoky skies cleared out just long enough to let the Northern Nevada sun shine down on the venue, while the band played some new stuff along with the jazz standards for which Preservation Hall is famous.

Every day for the duration of the Artown festival, there are options for every taste, from dance and art, to music and theater. Check online to see a full schedule of events, and if you haven’t experienced Reno during Artown, come and find out what you have been missing.