Outside magazine names Nevada City to their Best Towns Wild-Card Round: Honorable Mentions
“Over 6,000 votes for 108 towns were entered into our first Best Towns Wild-Card contest—so many that it took us days to sort through them all. As we did, we had a realization: there were far more deserving towns than we had space for in our bracket. These 12 got us the most excited.
“Best Towns Wild-Card Round: Honorable Mentions
“It’s usually a pit stop on road trips between the Bay area and Tahoe National Forest, but it’s worth more than meal at Three Forks or ol’ Republic. Cycle Champion Mine Road or hike up Deer Creek right from town. Plenty of crafts, boutiques, and a slew of artsy theaters keep it sophisticated, and it’s also got a few wineries. Or, skip town and just go wander the nearby Sierra.”
“Pluck a bit of gold from a riverbed scoured by the original ’49ers. Descend deep into the earth to check out unusual rock formations. Get your heart racing with a ride down whitewater rapids. For all this adventure and more, the Gold Country has your number—and your kids.
“Sporting California’s capital, Sacramento, this region is steeped in history, and fun ways for your family to learn about it first hand. Try gold panning in the same river where gold was first discovered in 1848. Tour some of the state’s richest mines and elegant homes built with boomtown fortunes. Ride historic steam locomotives and mysterious caverns. It’s history, California style.
“Discover Gold Country
“EMPIRE MINE STATE HISTORIC PARK
“Tour a Gold Rush mansion then go underground
“Get a one-two punch of experiences with a visit to this remarkable site in Grass Valley, roughly 60 miles/92 kilometers northeast of Sacramento. First, spend time in the Visitor Center to learn about one of California’s oldest, largest, deepest, longest, and richest gold mines, where, in the course of a century, 5.6 million ounces/159 million grams of gold were mined—enough to fill a box 7 feet/3 meters long, 7 feet/3 meters high, and 7 feet/3 meters deep by the time the mine shut down in 1956. To get a sense of the size of the mine, see the scale model representing the mine’s 5-square-mile/13-square-km network, then walk outside to visit the entrance of the actual shaft—a tiny peak into a staggering underground maze of 367 miles/591 kilometers.
“Now shift gears—mentally and physically—with a walk through the grounds of William Bowers Bourn Jr., who took over management of the mine in 1879. Bourn Cottage—a humble name for this magnificent country estate, where no expense was spared to create a two-story stone citadel patterned after the noble estates of 19th century England, complete with redwood interiors, and leaded-glass windows.
“Guided tours are offered May through September. The Mine Yard Tour sheds light on the rough lives of the miners who worked here. Get the flip side on the Cottage Grounds Tour, which includes a visit to the sumptuous Bourn Cottage.”
Now in its 8th year, the Nevada County Penny Pitch is a beloved Grass Valley tradition. This year’s Penny Pitch is Saturday, June 27 and dedicated to the memory of the late John Kane.
The old-fashioned event is patterned after San Francisco’s 38-year-old penny pitch fundraiser. Nevada County’s version is on the patio and sidewalk in front of Kane’s Restaurant in downtown Grass Valley.
Contestants pitch pennies against a wall, and the closest to the wall wins. Kane’s will offer a special food menu along with a DJ and a raffle. Last year, some 175 players pitched pennies raising more than $7,000 for DVSAC. Join in the fun. Gather a team of 1-6 people and register for just $15/player.
Principal sponsors and hosts are Nevada County Broadcasters, Inc. (KNCO-830AM & STAR 94FM) and Kane’s Restaurant.
Music in the Mountains joins with Nevada County Arts to curate an Art Show and Fair featuring exceptional works by more than 30 local and regional artists on our headliner weekend, Friday, Saturday & Sunday June 26, 27 & 28. Festival-goers can also enjoy an array of live local music, artist workshops, and fun family activities before and in between performances.
Saturday includes the free Family Art Fair from 10am – 4pm, with free classes, workshops, demonstrations, musical entertainment, and even a fashion show by the always fascinating Haute Trash Ensemble. The art displays and demonstrations continue from 11am – 3pm on Sunday.
“Catch the Fair Bug” is the theme of the 2015 Nevada County Fair and it’s time to dust off your favorite recipe, gather fabric for your quilt or prune your Petunias for your flower arrangement entry.
The Nevada County Fair’s Competition Handbook, which includes all the information you need to enter exhibits in this year’s Fair, is now available. If you can make it, bake it, grow it or show it, there is a category for you – and it can be found in the Competition Handbook!
Why not showcase a talent, a project, a cooking skill, or a special collection. Try baking cookies, entering a prized photo, creating a produce character, making the Ugliest Decorated Cake, writing a poem, or entering the Pet Look-A-Like photo contest. This year, we have some fun, new categories, including a Spelling Bee, tiny terrariums, creating the best BBQ sauce, an Instagram Contest, Recycled Fan art, an ugly lamp contest, or a painted rock category.
There are also lots of special contests like the Squash Mobile Races, Daily Special Food Contests, and the Newlywed Game. With hundreds of categories available for children and adults – the Competition Handbook has something for everyone.
Copies of the free handbook are available at the Fairgrounds’ Office, Chamber of Commerce offices, post offices, county libraries, Raley’s, SPD, Ben Franklin, Foothill Mercantile, and other local businesses, as well as on-line at www.NevadaCountyFair.com.
It’s easy to enter! Look through the book, pick your favorite categories, and follow the simple steps for completing the entry forms. You can even enter on-line at www.NevadaCountyFair.com. This year, there won’t be any entry fees for most categories (yes, it’s free!), you can enter on-line or at the Fair office, and there will be some great prizes!
The deadline for submitting paper entry forms and on-line entries is July 24 at 4 p.m.
This year’s Competition Handbook also contains information about discounted Fair tickets available now through August 11, discount days at the Fair, and nightly arena events.
The 2015 “Catch the Fair Bug!” Nevada County Fair is August 12 – 16. For more information, visit www.NevadaCountyFair.com or call (530) 273-6217.
Nevada County native Ishaan Reyna released his new original music video “Lights” which is filmed in and around Nevada City, California. Lights was co-written and produced by Owen Miles.
Ishaan’s original folk pop music has been described as “imaginative and uplifting, helping to define our region.” He has opened for such musical heavyweights as Chuck Ragan and Joan Armatrading.
Ishaan’s “I Won’t Give Up” music video was used to promote Nevada City during the 2015 Amgen Tour of California, Stage 2 and aired on NBC during the race. To learn more about Ishaan Reyna or watch other original music videos, visit IshaanReyna.com.
“Nevada City and Truckee have been named among the 23 best romantic weekend destinations in the West, according to VacationIdea.com. VacationIdea is a U.S.-based online magazine covering the most exciting destinations, hotels, restaurants and activities around the world. The web site was named “Best of the Web” by Forbes for 9 years and receives 500,000 monthly unique visitors.
“Other cities on the list included Big Sur; Ellensburg, Washington; Healdsburg; Hood River; Walla Walla; San Luis Obispo; Seabrook, Washington; Astoria, Oregon; Coronado, California; The Dalles, Oregon; McMinnville, Oregon; La Jolla, California; Cannon Beach, Oregon; Palm Springs; Ventura; Santa Barbara; Fort Bragg; Sausalito; Truckee; Two Harbors, Catalina Island; Carmel-by-the-Sea; and Langley on Whidbey Island.
“Surrounded by incredible Sierra Nevada Mountain vistas, Nevada City is a historic town with a rich gold rush heritage,” according to the travel website. “The charming downtown is home to unique shops and cafes inviting visitors to relax and soak up the scenery. Outdoor enthusiasts will have access to diverse hiking and biking trails in the area which also host the Nevada City Bicycle Classic, a 50-year-old tradition and the largest bike race on the West Coast.
“Where to Stay: Emma Nevada House offers six individually furnished guest rooms, including the Empress Chamber featuring romantic regal décor.
“Where to Eat: The restaurants in town serve a variety of flavors, including sushi, Thai, Mexican and Italian. For dessert, try homemade ice cream at Treats or handmade chocolates at the Nevada City Chocolate Shoppe.
“Don’t Miss: Learn all about the narrow gauge railroad era at the Nevada County Narrow Gauge Railroad Museum which houses important artifacts from that time period.”
“Tucked away in the Sierra Nevada mountain range, Truckee is a friendly and inviting mountain town that has been established as one of the region’s best summer and winter sport destinations. Surrounded by spectacular natural scenery, summer sees a wealth of outdoor adventures, with nature trails to hike and bike, lakes and ponds to fish and swim, and camping and picnicking to enjoy the warm summer sunshine. In the winter, there is world-class skiing, skating and sledding, as well as an array of winter festivals and carnivals to celebrate the snow.
“Downton Truckee is home to lovely little stores and shops to explore, as well as museums and historic buildings that tell the story of the town’s heritage.
“Where to Stay: Donner Lake Inn B & B has five guest rooms and a great room with a library, game area and a wood burning fireplace (website).
“Where to Eat: If you like to try new omelette flavors, Squeeze In boast a menu of over 60 delicious choices.
“Don’t Miss: Piping Rock Equestrian Center offers horseback riding for novice and expert riders, including clinics, and both Western and English instruction.”
“Placer County ranked #36, Nevada County ranked #47 and El Dorado ranked #49 in the nation, according to Pittsburgh-based Niche, which runs a ranking and review site. The methodology for the rankings, which also include cities, towns and neighborhoods, is here.
“In California, Placer County ranked #3, Nevada County ranked #6 and El Dorado County ranked #7 in outdoor activities. Calaveras County ranked #1.
“The 2015 Niche rankings “takes into account key indicators of a location’s environment and surroundings, including air quality, local weather, and access to natural amenities and outdoor recreation, in an attempt to measure an area’s quality of and access to the outdoors,” according to the website.
“In addition, these locales in our region ranked in the top 100 as the nation’s best places for outdoor activities: Auburn (#40), North Auburn (#42), Grass Valley (#54), Lake Wildwood near Grass Valley (#62), Alta Sierra near Grass Valley (#80), South Lake Tahoe (#48), Placerville (#30) and Pollock Pines (#41).
“In California our local towns ranked high for outdoor activities: Placerville was #2, Lake Tahoe was #7, Auburn was #9 and Grass Valley was #18.
“In California, Truckee ranked #23, Placerville ranked #27, Auburn ranked #29, South Lake Tahoe ranked #33 and Grass Valley ranked #39. Palo Alto was ranked the best town in America.
“Our local towns generally received higher marks for things to do, outdoor activities, commute and weather (mostly “A’s”) and lower grades for housing and jobs (“C” or lower). The countywide results were similar but often more negative on the housing and jobs front.
“A place is defined as being located within a Census-defined urbanized cluster or a principal city for an urbanized area with a population greater than or equal to 5,000 and less than 100,000. Nevada City’s population is less than 5,000, so it was not part of the analysis.”
Bear Yuba Land Trust Celebration of Trails Day
National Forest Headquarters
Coyote Street, Nevada City, CA 95959
May 30, 2015
8 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Free
Join Bear Yuba Land Trust and area trail enthusiasts for a community Celebration of Trails on Saturday, May 30. It’s the one day of the year all of your favorite trail supporters and outdoor recreation groups will come together to bring the community everything they want to know about trail related topics – a one stop resource for gear, maps, flora and fauna, and more.
Start the day with a lineup of morning outings: a beginner, moderate and intermediate trek; a family bike ride and a run then follow up with a trails day fair and celebration in the afternoon. Stop by the Tahoe National Forest headquarters on Coyote Street in Nevada City for a fun afternoon of family activities, food, beverages, live music and more. This is a free event and a great opportunity to get familiar with all the local trails and trail groups in our region. Learn more here.
“NEVADA CITY (15 mi/24 km; 21 min). Snap selfies in front of the town’s elaborate 1861 Firehouse No. 1. Sample fresh-baked breads, wood-fired pizza, and craft brews at Three Forks Bakery & Brewing Company. gonevadacounty.com”