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Video: Get on board the Fun Train to Reno

Our own Jill Stockton went for a ride aboard Amtrak’s Fun Train for a scenic ride from Sacramento to Reno. But this was no tame sightseeing tour …

There may be no easier way to get to Reno-Tahoe than aboard the Weekend Fun Train or Midweek Snow Train. There is no other train like it in America. The Fun Train is ideal for anyone looking to have a good time while enjoying the beautiful scenery of the Donner Pass route – one of the most historic and scenic rail lines in America.

From departure to arrival, traveling on the Fun Train was, well, fun! I boarded the train in Sacramento and was greeted by ‘Fun Rick,’ a member of the Fun Train team. Fun Rick helped me feel welcome aboard and made finding my seat a breeze.  After boarding the train, which was decorated with a Western theme, we promptly departed for Reno. The ride through the Sacramento valley and along Donner Pass was simply spectacular. The views were amazing and fresh snow was falling, making this ride to Reno extra special.

The entertainment on board was outstanding. It was like nothing I’d ever seen before. Dozens of people dancing to the live music of the “FunAntics” while winding through the mountains headed for Reno. This is surely something that you’d never experience in a car or airplane!

If listening, not dancing, to live music is more your style, then the Piano Lounge Car is for you. With live entertainment in the Piano Car you can meet new friends, enjoy a drink from the cocktail bar and relax. The Fun Train also has strolling minstrels, musicians, and magicians to entertain you – if the beautiful scenery is not enough.

When we arrived in Reno, the good times just got better. After exiting the train, passengers were greeted by a jazz band directing them to their chartered bus which would take them to their designated hotel. The simplicity and ease of this trip was truly amazing.

The trip includes a roundtrip rail ticket from Emeryville, Martinez, Suisun, Sacramento or Roseville to Reno with reserved seat, two nights hotel accommodations, a Winner’s Book – good for discounted meals, 50 percent off the show at Harrah’s and more. For more information on packages and pricing information visit Key Holidays online or call (800) 783-0783.

Reno-Tahoe active: Runners gear up for Odyssey

Reno-Tahoe OdysseyWith its high-altitude and moderate year-round climate, Reno-Tahoe attracts fitness freaks like moths to flame. Around just about every corner here there is a runner, a cyclist or a triathlete in training. And throughout the spring, summer and fall seasons, many local events draw even more fitness freaks to the Sierra…

The Reno-Tahoe Odyssey (June 6-7) offers runners an opportunity to team up with friends to conquer a 178-mile course that begins in Reno and winds around Lake Tahoe, before returning back to Reno. Along the way runners will experience the history of the Sierra Nevada, see some of the world’s most magnificent vistas and make new friends. Check the event Web site for more information on one of the region’s premier events.

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.