Downtown Reno glitters with brightly-lit casinos and 24-hour entertainment. In the middle of it all stands the city's best-known symbol, the Reno Arch. The arch welcomes visitors with its slogan, "The Biggest Little City In The World." There have been four arches since the original was erected in 1929. The arch which welcomed visitors from 1934 to 1963 can now be seen on Lake Street, in front of the National Automobile Museum.
One of the country's finest and most extensive collections of antique cars is on display at the National Automobile Museum (The Harrah Collection). Opened in 1989, more than 220 vehicles are featured, including horseless carriages, cars owned by celebrities, and experimental cars of the future.
Described by the Los Angeles Times as the "Taj Mahal of Tenpins," the National Bowling Stadium is the only facility of its kind in the world. The stadium features 78-championship lanes, Paul Revere's Kick's Diner & Dance Club, and an IWERKS theater where giant screen movies are shown daily.
The Wilbur D. May Center features a museum, an indoor arboretum, and a botanical garden surrounded by a beautiful park. During summer months, the center's Great Basin Adventure provides children with a full day of activities including pony rides, a "hands-on" discovery room, a log flume
Daytrip excursions also provide visitors with a number of sightseeing options. Reno serves as a base camp to some of the most unique attractions on the West Coast. Pyramid Lake, just east of Reno, is shrouded in the mysteries of Indian legend and prehistoric past; Virginia City, still the liveliest ghost town in the West, is only a 35-mile drive from Reno; Carson City, Nevada's State Capital, is only 30 miles from Reno; and nearby Lake Tahoe was described by Mark Twain as "surely the fairest picture the whole earth affords."
Arts and Culture
Reno offers a flourishing and diverse community of artistic talent. The 1,500-seat Pioneer Center for the Performing Arts is the home of the Reno Philharmonic, the Sierra Nevada Master Chorale, the Reno Dance Company, and a Best of Broadway series that gives scheduled performances throughout the year. A chamber orchestra, opera company, and two ballet troupes round out the Reno experience. The University of Nevada, Reno, presents a variety of art galleries, music, and performing arts.
The Nevada Museum of Art, originally called the Nevada Art Gallery in 1931, debuted its new four-level, 55,000 square foot location in May 2003 and features a permanent collection along with video and experimental exhibitions. A library, cafe, sculpture garden, and store are among the other modern amenities offered.
Reno's own summer arts festival, Uptown Downtown ARTown, was named one of the top 100 Events in North America by the American Bus Association. The festival takes place every July, when more than 150 events at three dozen locations are featured throughout the month.
Festivals and Holidays
Special events are plentiful and varied in Reno. In April, snowmobilers flock to SledFest with rides on the trails and a tradeshow. The Reno Rodeo, the "wildest, richest rodeo in the west," takes place over nine days in June and infuses nearly $35 million into the local economy. In August, the Reno area celebrates America's love affair with cars and rock 'n' roll during the five-day Hot August Nights. The celebration features more than 5,000 classic cars from 36 states, vintage music, parades, and drag racing. September is full of celebrations that include the Great Reno Balloon Race, the National Championship Air Races and Air Show, and Street Vibrations (for motorcycle enthusiasts). October brings the Eldorado's Great Italian Festival and the Celtic Festival.
Sports for the Spectator
Reno is making a name for itself as the mountain golf capital of the world. Since 1999 the PGA Tour's Greens.com Open at Reno-Tahoe (formerly Reno-Tahoe Open) has taken place at Montreux Golf and Country Club in August, where some of the world's best professional golfers compete. A celebrity-packed golfing event, the American Century Celebrity Championship, is also held annually at Edgewood-Tahoe in July.
Two of the country's largest bowling organizations, the American Bowling Congress (ABC) and the Women's International Bowling Congress (WIBC), hold tournaments at the National Bowling Stadium. Dubbed "Pin Palace" by USA Today, thousands of bowlers are drawn to the city's high-technology facility on a regular basis.
Sports for the Participant
Reno offers a seemingly limitless variety of indoor and outdoor activities. Snow-packed mountains, less than an hour from Reno, feature the largest concentration of world-class ski/snowboard resorts in North America. In the summer months, the same mountains, as well as the valley below, offer hiking and mountain biking. Since 1994 the three-day annual Mighty Tour De Nez Classic has featured different levels of regional bicyclers. Lake Tahoe, "the Jewel of the Sierra," is the perfect place for a day of canoeing, water skiing, swimming, and more.
High desert, rolling hills and mountainous alpine terrain make for some of the greatest golf courses found anywhere. The Reno-Tahoe area boasts more than 40 courses, 4,000 feet above sea level so golfers can watch their balls fly further through the thin air. The Reno area also offers great fishing in a variety of streams, rivers, and lakes. Non-resident fishing licenses are available at most sporting goods stores.
Shopping and Dining
More than 90 area shopping centers sell items ranging from the usual designer apparel to Native American handicrafts and Western art and clothing. Popular centers in Reno include Arlington Gardens Mall, Franktown Corners, Southwest Pavilion, Meadowood Mall, Park Lane Mall, and Indian Colony Corners. Sparks is home to Victorian Square Plaza.
Restaurants in Reno range from simple to extravagant. A local specialty is family-style Basque dinners.
Visitor Information: Reno's downtown Visitors Center is located in the lobby of the National Bowling Stadium, on the corner of Center and 4th Street; telephone (775)334-2600; Meadowood Mall Visitors Center is at 500 Meadowood Mall Circle, on the corner of S. McCarran Blvd. and S. Virginia Street; telephone (775)827-8450. The mailing address for both centers is Reno-Sparks Convention & Visitors Authority, PO Box 837, Reno, NV 89504-0837; general information number telephone (800)FOR-RENO; email info @visitrenotahoe.com
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