This past weekend I decided last minute I wanted to get out of town, but didn’t want to deal with an expensive or long drive anywhere. So where could I go? Then it dawned on me, time to take advantage of what’s right in my backyard. The solution was a “staycation” trip to the nearby city of Reno, Nevada known as the “Biggest Little City in the World”. Tourism professionals in the area strongly promote the activities and events in Lake Tahoe to visitors in Reno, but what about experiencing it the other way around? Located only 29 miles away from Lake Tahoe’s North Shore, the short but gorgeous ride to Reno only takes 45 minutes. So, I packed my bags, jumped in the car and within an hour was beginning my biggest little adventure!
First stop, the 2013 Reno-Tahoe WordCamp event held at the University of Nevada, Reno. Hundreds of developers, designers, social media gurus, speakers and blogger enthusiasts joined together for an exciting day of seminars, lectures and networking. This was my first time attending a WordCamp event and it was amazing. I learned so much and even more importantly, met some amazing new people. This got me to thinking about all of the AWESOME events that Reno hosts year-round that may visitors to Lake Tahoe are completely unaware of! Top events include: Reno Rodeo, Rib Cook-Off, Hot Air Balloon Races, Air Races, Reno River Festival, Hot August Nights, US Bowling Championships and Ace’s Baseball games. Any night visit downtown for dinner along the riverfront followed by some gambling or catch a show or concert at one of the casinos. To keep up on events occurring in Reno, follow the Reno-Tahoe Blog. What particularly impresses me about events held in Reno is how approachable and accessible they are. Growing up near a big city, events of this sort are often challenged by overwhelming crowds, expensive fees and lots of traffic! Instead, events in Reno are intimate, approachable, inexpensive and much less hassle.
Where to eat? Reno has hundreds of fantastic restaurants and a rich diversity of cuisines which I particularly enjoy when visiting from Lake Tahoe. I could write hundreds of posts on the best places to eat in Reno, so instead I will only mention the two that I visited this past weekend – Hiroba Sushi and Campo. I was craving sushi and feeling lucky to be in town so I could visit my favorite place, Hiroba Sushi. They have a fantastic all-you-can-eat sushi which is hassle-free, delicious sushi creations and a personal, engaging waitstaff. The only downside, they are always packed! I was especially appreciative this past visit when a gracious hostess slipped me into a spot at the sushi bar and I walked right in without waiting. The next day, it was gorgeous outside and I was able to join friends and visit a restaurant I have been anxious to try, Marke Estee’s Campo. Located in the hub of downtown along the Truckee River, its indoor/outdoor scene was perfect for this gorgeous day. We grabbed a table outside and enjoyed Sunday brunch. The selection was fantastic and proud of my italian heritage I was particularly pleased with the authentic Italian dishes and ingredients on the menu. I will definitely be back for seconds. To decide what to eat during your next trip to Reno, check out Chris Cook’s Sincerer Love and learn about dozens of restaurants and cuisines to enjoy while in town.
Shop ’till you drop! Reno also offers a fantastic variety of shopping venues to visitors ranging from small boutiques, vintage stores, discount outlet plazas and malls to full-service department stores. Whatever you are looking for, Reno has it. This past weekend I was able to find one-of-a-kind items while boutique shopping on South Virginia Street, conventional pieces at Macy’s in the Meadowood Mall and hot sale items at the Summit outlet stores in South Reno all in the matter of hours. Not very many big cities afford the variety, ease of navigation and close distance as Reno shopping does. To learn more about Reno fashion along with great tips on where to shop local visit Reno Has Style.
After learning more about Reno, I hope during your next visit to Lake Tahoe you drive down the mountain to witness the rebirth in Reno and experience the “biggest little city in the world” for yourself. Share in the comments if you have visited Reno before during a trip to Lake Tahoe and if so, what did you do?
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