Category Archives: Nevada City

Read our Top Stories for 2014

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In case you missed any of them, here are some of our top stories in 2014. Enjoy!

Nevada City a finalist for America’s coolest small town (video) Nevada City was named of the the 15 finalists for America’s coolest small town, according to “Nevada City may be a little off the beaten path (60 miles northeast of Sacramento, in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains), but residents value the Gold Country town for its music and art scene, food, and proximity to some of California’s amazing rivers, lakes, and the Sierra,” the travel website states.” To read the full article and watch a video, click here.

Nevada City Snowboarder Evan Strong wins Gold Medal in Sochi Winter Paralympics Nevada City snowboarder Evan Strong won the inaugural Winter Paralympics men’s snowboard cross medal Friday in Sochi, Russia. The 27-year-old Strong had a total time of 1 minute, 43.61 seconds. To read the rest of the article, click here.

Sacramento Bee writes about Bridgeport Covered Bridge “The historic Bridgeport Covered Bridge on the South Yuba River is about to be fitted for a life-saving girdle,” writes the Sacramento Bee. To read the full article, click here.

New York Times lists Truckee-Tahoe among Top U.S. places to visit in 2014 This weekend’s New York Times has listed Truckee-Tahoe as one of the top 52 places in the world to visit in 2014. It is a reminder of our region’s world-class amenities. To read the rest of the article, click here.

Nevada County Restaurant Week January 23 – February 1 Nevada County Tourism and, the official tourism website of Nevada County, in partnership with the Grass Valley Downtown Association, Greater Grass Valley Chamber, Nevada City Chamber, Penn Valley Chamber, South County Chamber, Truckee Donner Chamber and Sierra FoodWineArt magazine, are excited to announce Nevada County Restaurant Week 2015. To read the rest of the article, click here.

Bierwagen’s Farm 24th Annual Pumpkin Patch & Harvest Festival The 24th annual Bierwagen’s Farm Pumpkin Patch & Harvest Festival is happening everyday in October, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Enjoy a huge pumpkin patch with tons of pumpkins just waiting to be picked. To read the rest of the article, click here.

What’s Up in Nevada County November through December 2014 Check out what’s happening throughout Nevada County from November through January. To read the rest of the article, click here.

Tour the HGTV Dream Home 2014 in Truckee starting January 9 Schaffer’s Mill in Truckee is proud to be the host community for the incredible HGTV Dream Home 2014. You can tour this amazing 3,200-square foot home beginning Thursday, January 9th and continuing every Thursday-Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. through Feburary 14th. To read the rest of the article, click here.

Nevada City named one of the 10 intriguing smalls towns in the USA Nevada City has been named one of the “10 Intriguing Small Towns in the USA Everyone Should Visit” by “I’ve been fortunate enough to do some traveling around the USA, and along the way I’ve come across a lot of neat little towns,” states To read the full article, click here.

Amy Grant (watch video) and Jeff Bridges coming to Grass Valley The Center for the Arts announces Amy Grant and Jeff Bridges & The Abiders will be performing in Grass Valley. To read the rest of the article, click here.


Take a hike this fall! With the arrival of fall comes cooler days and nights meaning local trails are awash in gold and crimson, providing a wealth of opportunities for families to unplug, get outdoors, take a walk and encounter the wonders of nature. To read the rest of the article, click here.

Nevada City Chamber of Commerce’s Victorian Christmas commercial to air on the Hallmark Channel

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Like the Grass Valley Downtown Association’s Cornish Christmas, the Nevada City Chamber of Commerce’s own Victorian Christmas commercial will be aired multiple times on the Hallmark Channel during the holidays, including during airings of “The Christmas Card,” which was filmed in Nevada City.

Click here to view “The Christmas Card” showtimes and watch the Victorian Christmas commercial below:

Enjoy a hike this holiday season

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It’s the holidays! Get outdoors with family, friends and Bear Yuba Land Trust. ‘Tis the season for holiday treks and outings with Bear Yuba Land Trust (BYLT) with just four more events scheduled for the remainder of 2014.

“BYLT’s 2014 Treks program was the most ambitious year yet. With almost 80 outings, lectures, classes, and community events we enticed over 1000 people to get outdoors and learn something new about our beautiful Sierra Nevada homeland. In 2015, with our 25th Anniversary just around the corner, we have many more special events and outings planned. Happy holidays and happy trails!,” said Community Program Manager Melony Vance.

The holiday lineup kicks off this Friday, Nov. 28, the day after Thanksgiving, with the 5th Annual Turkey Trek. It’s a perfect opportunity to get off the couch, call friends or grab the kids and head out for a hike.

BYLT will host this year’s unguided, free, no-reservation-required hike from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the Loma Rica Trail. Meet at the Horsemen’s Arena at the intersections of Brunswick Rd, Town Talk Rd, and Bubbling Wells Rd just south of the Brunswick Basin. The trail starts out along Brunswick Road, crosses over Idaho Maryland Rd, and ascends across a meadow and through the woods, ending at Loma Rica Road.

This mostly level, easy walk is approximately three miles round trip. Remember to bring water, layered clothing and good hiking shoes.

Next up, amateur historian Brian Bisnett will lead the first ever BYLT Salmon Spawning Trek on the Yuba River near the town of Smartsville from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 6. This adventure begins at the Blue Point Mine then heads to Rose Bar to see the salmon and learn about fishery remediation efforts. From there, trekkers will loop back toward the mine, stopping to check out the Blue Point tunnel exit and air shaft. This is a level, moderate four mile hike.

Space is limited and requires registration and pre-payment. $12 BYLT members, $17 Not-yet-members.

Joe Medeiros, a biologist at Sierra College and Editor of the Sierra College Press will lead BYLT’s last Armchair Trek of the year, Sierra Superlatives from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 11 in the Gene Albaugh Community Room at the Madelyn Helling Library in Nevada City.

Medeiros’ slide-illustrated lecture program focuses on the majesty of the four hundred mile long, three miles high, Sierra Nevada. John Muir’s “Range of Light” is home to the highest peak in the lower 48 states, glaciers, giant sequoias and thousands of species of plants and animals. Medeiros has taught college biology, botany and ecology for more than 35 years and has hiked and photographed the mountain range for even longer.

There are no reservations required, for this armchair trek with a suggested donation of $10.

The Land Trust will wrap up its 2015 trekking program with a free trek on Empire Mine State Historic Park’s Union Hill Trails on Tuesday, Dec. 16. This is a level, moderately easy 3 mile loop. Meet at the Gold Hill Trailhead adjacent to the parking area at the end of Gold Hill Drive. Bring water, dress for the weather and wear good walking shoes.

This hike is the final in a year-long monthly series called Treks on Tuesday, celebrating the trails mapped and described on BYLT’s online Trails Portal and printed in a collection of laminated trail cards available at area retailers. BYLT’s popular trail cards can be found at: Nevada City Chamber of Commerce, Outside Inn, The Earth Store, Mountain Recreation and BYLT’s office.

Besides conserving 9,000 acres of land within the Bear and Yuba watersheds for farms, wildlife corridors and healthy forests, Bear Yuba Land Trust is committed to getting people outdoors to connect with nature. To date, BYLT has built more than 35 miles of local trails and regularly provides opportunities for people to engage with the land. Stay tuned for another great lineup in 2015 as BYLT invites the community to come together to celebrate 25 years of saving land.

Learn more about local hiking trails here. For more information, visit or contact Melony Vance at or 272-5994 x200.

Nevada County Narrow Gauge Railroad Museum hosts holiday celebration

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The Nevada County Narrow Gauge Railroad Museum celebrates Christmas on Saturday, December 6, 2014 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. There will be door prizes, silent auction, refreshments and a chance to visit Santa (bring your camera!). The gift shop offers unique holiday shopping opportunities. Free admission.

Artisans Festival is November 28-29 at Miners Foundry

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Start your holiday season with a visit to the 2014 Artisans Festival on Friday and Saturday, November 28 and 29 at the historic Miners Foundry Cultural Center in Nevada City. This holiday tradition is one of the longest running festivals in Nevada County and is known for showcasing the exceptional work of regional artisans.

This year’s festival takes the term “Art Party” to another level with dozens of new artists, installation art displays, performance art, live music, children’s holiday art activities, and a rustic, bohemian Acoustic Café and Wine Bar. Tickets $3, $5 Weekend Pass, Children 15 and under free. Daily hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

“It is a new year for the Artisans Festival and it’s going to be a fun, exciting time,” explains the show’s producer Laura Gerhart.

Local musicians scheduled to perform include Lisa Stine on harp, Heather MacAdam on guitar with Phyllis Grant on flute; and Lorraine Gervais accompanied by Jacob Aginsky doing 20s and 30s Jazz tunes at the Acoustic Café and Wine Bar.

“Our vision for the Artisans Cafe is that it will be an artistic ephemeral space that will exist only for the duration of the event. It will be an interactive mirage,” says artist, designer and teacher Faye Schoolcraft.

“Inside the installation, there will be tables for dining, live acoustic music, artwork, a bar, and areas for people to participate by adding their own creative expression.”

Schoolcraft is the magic behind the festival’s Acoustic Café and Wine Bar set, as well as an installation artist showing her frisky fiber figurine sculptures. Schoolcraft who currently resides in Nevada City and teaches at Sierra College has exhibited nationally including New York City, Los Angeles, and at Burning Man in the Black Rock Desert, NV.

The Festival artists have been juried by a distinguished group of local artisans who looked for the highest quality of wares and craftsmanship. Gerhart and this year’s jury members have selected several new artisans to participate in the show. In fact, nearly half of the artists are new to the festival this year with a third of them coming from out of the area.

Some of the new artists include:

Tahiti Pehrson, is based in Nevada County with long ties to the Bay Area. Pehrson has been working in paper for nearly fifteen years. Recent works explores the fragility and interconnectedness expressed by physical structures. Large scale installations of geometrical hand cut paper are layered into three-dimensional structures. His work has shown internationally including London, Cape Town, and San Francisco.

David Wong
David Wong, the only nature photographer in the show, began showing his work only 8 short years ago after a prior lifetime career in film production. He was inspired by his teacher, Ted Orland, one of Ansel Adams’ assistants, who felt he had a unique eye for light, subject and composition. David’s soft spoken manner is evident in his photos, each of which offers a calm, peaceful reflection of nature’s beauty.

Kelly Bechtold, owner of Girl on a Motorcycle luxe leather accessories out of Berkeley, CA, founded her company in 2007 and has been busy designing and selling to a loyal and growing audience ever since. Her bags and accessories are timelessly designed, made by hand and built to endure. No machines, no factories-just Kelly, a workbench, some hand tools and a good record playing on the turntable. Her materials are sourced of the finest produces American deer, buffalo and cattle hides and feature high quality fixtures and adornments.

Myah Sarles, BFA, a traveler, snowboarder and fine artist joins the festival from Marin County where she creates highly textured, energetic, adventurous, colorful, joyous, imaginative and intuitive works of 2D art. Fortunate to have traveled the globe extensively, Myah draws inspiration from the textures, patterns and colors naturally present on Earth and uses this to fuel the fire for her art.

Jude Bischoff
Returning artists include Liz Collins, LeeAnn Brook, Jude Bischoff, Kathryn Wronski, Karen and Jack West, Sweetland Pottery, Eileen Blodgett, Ride ‘em George,Don Augstein, Lynn Wood, Richard Davis, Martha Jones, Elany Prusa, Kathryn Finn, Seth Simpson, Phyllis Williams and Donald Dalke.

“I have always seen the Artisans Festival as a local fall gem of an event. It’s a great time to hang out with friends or bring visiting family,” says Gerhart. “Plus, with its small town appeal and classy setting, it is the perfect addition or antidote, depending on your point of view, to ‘Black Friday’.”

Artisans Festival is an annual fundraiser for the Foundry, one of Nevada County’s most beautiful historic landmarks. Artisans Festival is the kickoff of to the holiday season for the Foundry with its beautiful halls decorated with twinkling lights, festive garland and wreaths.

—Miners Foundry Cultural Center

2014 Nevada City’s Victorian Christmas


The enticing aromas of roasted chestnuts and hearty holiday foods fill the air, along with cries of street vendors hawking their wares and lamp-lit streets filled to overflowing with authentic Christmas treasures. It’s the 36th one & only Victorian Christmas – full of new shows, sights, sounds and attractions.

Welcome the holiday season in style in historic Nevada City, a quaint, Gold Rush town nestled in the foothills of the snow-capped Sierra where each year the town’s picturesque downtown transforms into a genuine Christmas card come to life. It’s a magical setting of hilly streets outlined with twinkling white lights and authentic gas lamps, wandering minstrels and carolers dressed in Victorian attire, and a myriad of visitors sharing holiday cheer and good tidings.

This annual, family tradition takes place two Wednesday evenings (Dec. 10 & 17) and three Sunday afternoons (Dec. 7, 14 & 21), and features holiday activities for all ages: carriage rides, live entertainment, savory yuletide treats and libations, and of course, Father Christmas!

At locations throughout downtown, Victorian singers, bagpipers, brass bands and strolling minstrels provide warm Christmas music. Nevada City’s famous Walking Christmas Tree and a living nativity scene can be found, along with hot roasted chestnuts and horse drawn carriage rides.

As parking can be difficult in Nevada City during Victorian Christmas, plan on dropping your group off in town and then park your car and catch the Shuttle from the Nevada County Government Center, 950 Maidu Avenue, Nevada City CA 95959. Shuttle costs $5 for adults and children 15 and over. Children under 15 ride free. Return journeys are free for all. Shuttle hours are 4:30 to 9:30 p.m. Wednesdays and noon to 6:30 p.m. Sundays.

To learn more, visit

Hallmark Channel’s “The Christmas Card” filmed in Nevada City


Hallmark Channel’s “The Christmas Card,” filmed in and around Nevada City, will be shown several days and times this holiday season.

“The Christmas Card” is the story of Cody Cullen (John Newton), a career soldier who is deeply touched by an anonymous holiday card he receives while serving in Afghanistan. When he returns to the United States, he treks to the picturesque California town of Nevada City, from which the card originated. He soon meets and unexpectedly falls in love with Faith (Alice Evans), the woman who sent the card – and is practically accepted as a new member of the family by her parents (Asner and Lois Nettleton). But there’s one major roadblock to happily-ever-after: The girl has a boyfriend who moves fast to propose once Cody is in the picture. Will Faith accept? Or is the soldier a soul mate who rescues Faith in the nick of time?

Sunday, November 23 at 7 p.m.
Monday, November 24 at 1 a.m.
Wednesday, December 3 at 9 p.m.
Thursday, December 4 at 9 a.m.
Sunday, December 14 at 7 a.m.
Sunday, December 14 at 9 p.m.
Wednesday, December at 3 p.m.
Thursday, December 18 at 7 p.m.
Tuesday, December 23 at 9 p.m.
Wednesday, December 24 at 1 p.m.

Watch a short video here:

New article by Bay Area travel writer about Tess’ Kitchen Store’s Chef’s Dinners

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Bay Area travel writer Carole Terwillger Meyers recently visited Nevada County and wrote an blog item about her experience at Tess’ Kitchen Store’s Chef’s Dinner.

“This gigantic gourmet kitchen store sprawls over three levels. It is by far the largest such store I have seen, and stocks both the latest and the greatest as well as the tried and true. Among the goods are a large selection of knives, locally-made wood cutting boards, and pots and pans galore.

“In addition to the hands-on cooking classes scheduled in the basement kitchen, Chef’s Dinners are offered one per month by reservation. These expansive dinners are prepared by multi-talented chef Alan Tangren, who formerly was on the staff at Chez Panisse, taught meteorology at U.C. Davis, and was raised on a local farm! Dinners are limited to ten participants and consist of five courses that are paired with local wines, plus a concluding course paired with coffee. Diners sit on stools at a high marble counter—all the better to watch the preparations, listen to interesting stories between courses, and eat each item as it is ready. Dinners sell out fast so plan ahead.”

To read the rest of the article, click visit

(Article and photos: Carole Terwilliger Meyers, Weekend Adventures Update and

“Exploring California’s Gold Country: Nevada City”

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Bay Area travel writer Susan Alcorn published another article about her recent trip to Nevada County that is published on

“On a recent trip to the gold country, we “leaf peekers” hoped to see Nevada City at the height of its fall color. Nature being what she is, we were early in the season, but nevertheless, we found much to photograph and to do in this charming small city and the surrounding area. Nevada City has a population of only 3,068, but it’s the county seat of Nevada County. Its downtown, with 93 buildings, is on the National Register of Historic Places. It’s easy to take a walking tour to see the many fine brick storefronts in its downtown and the stately Victorian homes close by. (Click here for a map)

“One of the most popular old buildings is the Miners Foundry Cultural Center, which was built in 1856. The foundry was the first manufacturing location of the Pelton wheel. The Pelton wheel, invented by Lester Pelton in 1879, was a major breakthrough in mining operations. Basically, the turbine collected and transformed the energy of flowing water much more efficiently than waterwheels had previously. The Pelton wheel is still widely used for many applications today.

“The Miners Foundry now operates as a community and performing arts center hosting hundreds of activities yearly including stage and musical productions, receptions, and dances. Inside the foundry, you can find a printed, self-guided tour of the many historic artifacts in the building. Nevada City also hosts many popular tourist attractions. In January, the “Wild & Scenic Film Festival,” focusing on environmental issues, outdoor adventure and extreme sports is held. In June (usually on Father’s Day Weekend) the Nevada City Classic, a challenging professional cycling race, is held. Lance Armstrong was the winner in 2009.

“Hiking opportunities:

“In addition to the Nevada City walking tour, there are many other places to hike. The South Yuba River State Park (details in previous articles, see links below) is great for hiking year round.

“In addition, there is the Independence Trail. The Bear Yuba Land Trust’s website reads, “This trail, founded by the late John Olmsted, transformed an historic gold mining ditch into the nation’s first identified handicapped-accessible wilderness trail. It is now one of the most popular trails in the area, contouring along wooded hillsides, passing live streams, and crossing deep gorges on restored wooden flumes that once transported water for hydraulic mining. The trail has two separate sections (West and East) that extend from one main trailhead on Hwy 49. Independence Trail West is oriented for most of its length around the canyon of Rush Creek, a large tributary stream that enters the South Yuba River at Jones Bar. The West trail features several wooden flumes, a large covered viewpoint, picnic tables and benches. Flume 28, over 500′ in length, crosses above a waterfall on Rush Creek 1.1 miles west of the trailhead. It is a “must see” piece of mining history.”

“While you are in the region, plan to visit the fascinating Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park. The park is the site of world’s largest hydraulic gold mine. Miners in the 1850-1880s, forced water through hoses and nozzles under high pressure to blast and wash the gold out of the mountainsides. Malakoff Diggins “devastated the pristine landscape leading to the first environmental law enacted in the nation.” In the park are more than 30 miles of hiking trails as well as camping and miners’ cabins (open seasonally), fishing, and Gold Rush-era buildings.”

To read the full article, including hiking opportunities, click here.

(Source: Susan Alcorn,

Visit Santa at the Nevada County Narrow Gauge Railroad Museum

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On Saturday, December 6, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Santa and his elves will make their annual visit to the Nevada County Narrow Gauge Railroad Museum. They love to be photographed for Christmas cards beside the 1880’s Nevada County Narrow Gauge Railroad’s Engine #5.

It’s a free day for everyone as the holiday decorated Museum features local transportation history displays. The railbus will run, weather-permitting. There will be visits available to the equipment restoration shop and the Gift Shop will be open. Enjoy refreshments, a silent auction and a children’s raffle.

The Museum is located at #5 Kidder Court in Nevada City off Gold Flat Road from Bost Avenue or New Mohawk Drive.

For more information call 530-470-0902 or go to