Category Archives: Recreation

Sales of Anchor California Lager to benefit Empire Mine State Historic Park

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Since May, Anchor California Lager has been available in six-pack cans and a portion of the proceeds are going toward Empire Mine State Historic Park in Grass Valley.

The little-known program stems from a partnership between San Francisco-based Anchor Brewing Co., the California State Parks Foundation and National Parks Conservation Association.

Empire Mine Park Association is one of only three groups selected in California for the grant program known as “Anchor California Lager Grants.” The others are the Coastside State Parks Association at Half Moon Bay and Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks.

In the case of Empire Mine: “Beginning in the late 1970s, staff and volunteers at the Empire Mine State Historic Park recorded interviews with former miners and supervisors to capture some of the history of the operation of the mine.

“Those interviews were recorded on cassette tapes that are now quite aged and fragile. Our grant will allow Empire Mine Park Associate to digitize many of these interviews and materials, including selected text translations and articles on the Association’s website where they will be readily available to the public.”

Anchor Brewing Company’s roots date back to the California Gold Rush, making it one of America’s oldest breweries. “Anchor California Lager is the brewery’s re-creation of the first genuine lager brewed in the Golden State,” according to “It is brewed with two-row barley and Cluster hops and is kräusened and lagered in Anchor’s cellars.”

California is home to 280 state parks and 26 of America’s 401 national parks. This year the California State Parks celebrate their 150th anniversary, along with Yosemite National Park.

(Source: Sierra FoodWineArt)

Western stars including Clint Walker coming to Gold Rush Days in Grass Valley

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The Grass Valley Downtown Association is honored to announce that this year’s Gold Rush Days will feature western movie and television stars Clint Walker, Johnny Crawford, Peter Sherayko and Charlie LeSueur on June 21-22 in historic Downtown Grass Valley.

Clint Walker is a local legend best known for his cowboy role as “Cheyenne Bodie” in the western television series “Cheyenne”; Johnny Crawford was nominated for an Emmy award at age 13 for his role as the son of Lucas McCain (played by Chuck Connors) in “The Rifleman.”

Peter Sherayko is an actor, historian and filmmaker best known for his work on western movies such as “Tombstone” and television shows like “Deadwood” for HBO; and Charlie LeSueur is a well-known Western film historian, writer and actor.

Gold Rush Days, now in its second year, will feature two days of non-stop action. With help from our friends from the Empire Mine State Historic Park, South Yuba Trust, Nevada County Historical Society and the Nevada County Narrow Gauge Railroad Museum, Gold Rush Days will take you back in time to 1853.

Both Saturday and Sunday from 10-5 p.m. we will feature reenactments, gold panning, blacksmithing, demonstrations, music, exhibits, a Saturday night “Hoe-Down” and BBQ, Sunday morning cowboy church followed by a pancake breakfast benefiting the Hospice of the Foothills and more.

“We are absolutely honored to have the opportunity to host these celebrities here in Grass Valley. We will be showing some of their films at 151 Union Square during the event, and visitors will have an opportunity to meet them” said Julia Jordan, Executive Director.

For more information about Gold Rush Days, call 530-272-8315 or visit

Nevada County plans a “Celebration of Trails” for June 7

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What: Celebration of Trails
When: 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, June 7
Where: Trail Fair Headquarters – Parking Lot, County of Nevada, Rood Center
Cost: Free

Bear Yuba Land Trust is teaming up with the community to host a number of guided outings on local trails in Nevada County for the annual “Celebration of Trails.”

Coinciding with National Trails Day, the event held from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, June 7, is open to all and is meant to encourage more people to get outdoors on local trails. More than 20 local organizations, outdoor experts and trail advocates are coming together to organize 14 different outings.

A trails day headquarters will be set up in the parking lot of Nevada County’s Rood Center parking lot, across from the trailhead of the Hirschman Trail. People can stop by for local trail information and maps, grab a cup of coffee and a baked good from Sierra Mountain Coffee Roasters and pick up the day’s schedule.

After an introduction by local dignitaries, a number of outings will depart, carpool style from the Rood Center. Afterward, folks will gather at Matteo’s Public for spirits and camaraderie.

Events include a five-mile hike in the South Yuba Canyon led by Hank Meals, three bike rides led by Bicyclists of Nevada County (BONC), a hike at Black Swan led by Stephen Hein of Mendocino Tahoe Conservancy, a day hike at Spenceville Wildlife and Recreation Area led by Richard Thomas of Friends of Spenceville, and a walk on the Hard Rock Trail at Empire Mine led by State Park Ranger Greg Sherr.

They also include equestrian ride at Lone Grave led by Gold Country Trails Council, a family friendly wheelchair accessible nature hunt at Hirschman’s Pond led by Ana Acton of FREED and Robyn Martin of OLALA Farms, and a four-mile hike from Lang’s Crossing to Spaulding Lake led by Sierra Club.

Other events are a guided geology tour at Malakoff Diggins State Park led by Geoscientist David Lawler of Far West Geoscience Foundation, a Nevada City tree tour led by Nevada County Walkers, a walk to the top of Sugar Loaf Mountain led by Ray Bryars, a six-mile walk on the Deer Creek Tribute Trail led by Amber Taxiera of The Sierra Fund, and a walk on the Environs Loop Trail led by Ori Chafe of Sierra Streams Institute.

For more information visit:

—Laura Brown, Bear Yuba Land Trust

11th annual Drew Reynolds Memorial Softball Tournament

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11th Annual Drew Reynolds Memorial Softball Tournament
An adult, co-ed 2-day tournament Saturday & Sunday, May 24 & 25.

Drew Reynolds was an avid softball player, soccer player, fisherman and all around great sportsman. He was an awesome father, husband and friend. Drew worked for United Parcel Service for twelve years when he was killed on January 6, 2004, in an auto accident, by a man on methamphedamines.

What his brother in law, Mike Malarae started in honor of him and to help Drew’s young girls start a college fund has turned into the Drew Reynolds Memorial Softball Tournament, a Memorial weekend tradition honoring he and others we have lost in our community. Proceeds to Benefit Drug Prevention and Educational Programs throughout the local community.

Every year the funds are directed to different organizations in need. The main focus is adolescent drug prevention & education programs through CoRR (Community Recovery Resources). These funds have supported drug prevention assemblies at the local high school, where Baylee, Drew’s oldest daughter, was able to speak on how you don’t have to be the one doing drugs for your life to be affected by them. She was also a guest speaker at an open air concert that we helped fund put on by the Coalition for a Drug Free Nevada County.

These funds are also donated to Anew Day, a non profit organization that offers counseling free of charge to our community. Anything from drug and suicide to grief counseling, they are there to help.

Recently, the family of Drew as graciously decided to allow the Rotary Club of Penn Valley to carry on the legacy and host the tournament.

Registration is open now to participate in the tournament. Play begins at 9 a.m. on Saturday, May 24 at Western Gateway Park in Penn Valley.

(Source: Penn Valley Rotary Club)

Mountain Bike Endurance Ride

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Mountain Bike Endurance Ride
Saturday, May 17, 2014

This year’s Mountain Bike Endurance Ride challenging fundraiser for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Nevada County and North Lake Tahoe offers two routes:

50 Miles of demanding, technical trails, mostly single track
45 Miles of moderately technical trails, mostly single track

The 50 mile route follows a beautiful loop out of Nevada City on local trails, including the incomparable South Yuba Trail. The route is comprised of approximately 80% single track, 7,000+ feet of climbing and stunning views of the South Yuba River. It is one of the most memorable and challenging rides you’ll do this year, on road or dirt. This route is a tough ride, roughly equivalent to a difficult road century. It is best suited for advanced, fit mountain bikers. Last year, most participants completed the ride in 7-8 hours.

The 45 mile route is less demanding, but also follows some of the best trails in the area.

For a more detailed description of the trails, click here.

Please note that although there are well stocked food stations on the routes, this is largely a self-supported ride that covers some remote terrain in isolated areas of Nevada County.

New this year will be shorter routes available for those riders who want to support this great cause but are not prepared for the endurance routes. Please contact our office to make arrangements for your route after you register following the instructions below: or (530) 265-2059.

This is a charity ride, so each rider is encouraged to collect at least $250 in sponsorship donations. We also have event sponsors that help offset the costs of the ride. All proceeds raised at this event support our valuable mentoring programs for at-risk children in the Nevada County and North Lake Tahoe region.

To register:

Call Rick Kalb at 530-470-1800
A registration packet will be mailed or emailed to you.
Complete the registration form mailed to you and submit per instructions.
Start collecting pledges! Please note that we have set up a way for our riders to collect pledges online to facilitate their fundraising efforts. To do so, all you need to do is follow the steps outlined in your registration packet. For more information on collecting online pledges, Big Brothers Big Sisters: 530-265-2059 or

Nevada County has lots of bike paths to ride year-round. Here is a list of some of them.

(Photo: Big Brothers Big Sisters of Nevada County and North Lake Tahoe)

United Way BBQ Battle & Foreign Car Show

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This year the United Way of Nevada County decided to combine two great annual events, the BBQ Battle & Foreign Car Show into one huge event. It will take place on Saturday, August 16th at Western Gateway Park in Penn Valley allowing for a larger crowd, and room for vendors and fun stuff for kids.

Community members will have the chance to come out and try some great barbeque, vote for the top griller and vote for their favorite foreign car and motorcycle.

There will be vendors, music, food, a kid’s area, and a Beer Garden … fun for the whole community.

Foreign cars and foreign motorcycles will be on display for viewing.

There aren’t too many new things you need to take into consideration with this new venue, besides an earlier start time; BBQ sampling will begin at 12:30. See complete BBQ rules and registration form on our website under Events.

Participants will compete for “Critic’s Choice” and “People’s Choice” for best tasting ribs.

If you are also a foreign car or motorcycle enthusiast and would like to register for the car show, you can find that form on our website under Events.

Proceeds benefit the United Way of Nevada County.

South Yuba River State Park featured in Via magazine

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“When spring arrives in the Sierra foothills, melting snow courses into rocky riverbeds while wildflowers paint the adjacent hillsides. Near Nevada City, Calif., blooms such as the delicate fairy lantern and the purple Chinese house erupt in a riot of color along the Buttermilk Bend Trail, which follows the dramatic river canyon in South Yuba River State Park,” according to the May issue of Via magazine.

“Pick up a wildflower brochure at the visitor center and follow the placards or join a docent-led wildflower walk (weekends through mid-May) for background on the blooms.

“For another scenic stroll, try Independence Trail, one of the nation’s first wheelchair-accessible wilderness trails. Here, Gold Rush–era flumes support wooden pathways that gently switchback down to a creek.

The rest of the article is here.

Destruction Derby returns to Nevada County Fair

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Destruction Derby returns to the Nevada County Fair

It’s back – the Destruction Derby at the Nevada County Fair! This year’s Derby, held on Sunday, August 10 at 7 p.m., during the Nevada County Fair, will be locally produced by five of Nevada County’s Rotary Clubs – The Rotary Club of Nevada City, Rotary Club of Nevada County South, 49er Breakfast Rotary of Nevada City, Penn Valley Rotary, and Rotary Club of Grass Valley.

To prepare for this exciting Fair-time event, Rotary has scheduled a planning meeting for the community – for potential drivers, sponsors and derby enthusiasts – on Thursday, May 8, from 6 – 7 pm at Ponderosa Hall at the Nevada County Fairgrounds. Registration forms will be available for drivers interested in entering the Derby.

For additional information regarding the Derby, contact Allison Swartzendruber, co-chair of Rotary’s Nevada County Destruction Derby at (530) 277-6229 or

This year’s Nevada County Fair is August 6-10. The Destruction Derby will be held on Sunday, August 10, at 7 pm. Tickets for the Derby and for the Fair will go on sale on June 1. Visit for details.

What’s Up in Nevada County, CA May – July 2014

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What’s Up in Nevada County, CA this May – July, 2014


Nevada County’s Farmer Markets are starting to open. Below is a list of the Markets with dates, times and locations.

Nevada County Certified Growers Market at three locations:

North Star House, Grass Valley
Saturdays – 8:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
April 12 – November 22, 2014

The Rood Center, Nevada City
Tuesdays – 2:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
June 3 – October 28, 2014

7th Day Adventist Church, Penn Valley
Thursdays – 2:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
June 5 – October 30, 2014

Nevada City Farmers Market
Union Street, Downtown Nevada City
Saturdays – 8:30 a.m. – 1:00 pm.
June 14 – November 22, 2014

Grass Valley Thursday Night Market
Mill & Main Street, Downtown Grass Valley
Thursdays – 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
June 26 – August 14, 2014

Foothills Farmers’ Market
Truckee River Regional Park
Tuesday – 8:00 am. – 1:00 p.m.
Begins June 10

Gold Country Cycling Challenge
Nevada County Fairgrounds, Grass Valley, CA
Saturday, May 10, 2014
7:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

The Rotary Club of Grass Valley invites everyone of all ages to participate in the first annual Gold Country Challenge. The event includes a 50k, 100k and 100- mile tour of the beautiful Gold Country region of Northern California. The ride is fully supported by friendly volunteers, fantastic rest stops, support vehicles, and well-marked routes. After your ride, you enjoy a hearty dinner and live entertainment. Bring your family with you and the kids can enjoy the family ride and children’s bike rodeo. BBQ and beverages will be served.

57th Annual Penn Valley Rodeo
Penn Valley Rodeo Grounds, Penn Valley, CA
Friday, May 16 – Sunday, May 18, 2014

The 57th Annual Penn Valley Rodeo kicks off with exciting performances including saddle bronc riding, bareback riding, bull dogging, team roping, barrel racing and, the highlight of any rodeo, bull riding. Sunday is the Annual Community Rodeo Playday where anyone can be a rodeo cowboy or cowgirl. There is always a rodeo clown, intermission performances and our very own Penn Valley drill team. The Cook House serves BBQ tri tip meals with all the fixin’s. Beer Garden has several brands of beer on tap and always serves wine for those with a more refined taste.

Tall Pines Vintage Trailer Rendezvous
Nevada County Fairgrounds, CA
Saturday, June 7, 2014

Over 100 vintage trailers will set up at the Nevada County Fairgrounds for the four-day Tall Pines Vintage Trailer Rendezvous. Owners will open their doors to public to show off their vintage trailers. Enjoy delicious BBQ and dancing to live music while the kids have fun fishing in the lake and getting their faces painted. Viewing the trailers and dance are free to the public.

Humbug Day
Malakoff Diggins State Park
Nevada City, CA
June 14, 2014

Revisit the exciting and controversial hydraulic gold mining era of the 1870’s! Enjoy Old Time music, wagon rides, barbecue picnic, homemade ice cream, reinactments, craft demonstrations, gold panning, candle making and tin punching, old fashioned family games and prizes, storytelling, living history tours of historic North Bloomfield, the world’s shortest parade and shooting the water cannon!

2nd Annual Mule & Donkey Show
Penn Valley Rodeo Grounds
Penn Valley, CA
Friday, June 27- Sunday, June 29, 2014

This American Mule Association (AMA) sanctioned Mule Show will feature cattle classes; Halter, Western & English-style riding; packing and Gymkhana. 

Food & Fun will be served up at this FREE admission event.

29th Annual Sierra Storytelling Festival
North Columbia Schoolhouse Cultural Center
North San Juan, CA
Friday, July 18 to Sunday, July 20, 2014

For one magical weekend in July, settle back and hear stories unfold beneath the big trees and nighttime stars of California’s Sierra foothills. Come join us while our storytellers spin tales spanning the centuries and connecting generations — guaranteeing laughter, tears and moments of pondering the impossible. One festival, three days, and a world of stories reaching the very heart of our human experience.

Sierra FoodWineArt Launches Mobile Website

Sierra FoodWineArt magazine launched a new mobile-friendly website geared for travelers. The mobile-friendly website is an “on the go” guide for visitors when they’re traveling on the highways, visiting Sierra Foothill or Sierra towns or enjoying the outdoors. Unlike an “app,” it doesn’t have to be downloaded. You merely type into your iPhone or smartphone, and it automatically appears.

The mobile site has more interactive features than desktop sites. Once a user logs onto, he or she is prompted to share their exact location. This gives visitors information on attractions and venues that are in close proximity. Highlights of include directories and GPS mapping for dining and nightlife, wine and beer tasting, lodging & B&B, wedding venues, spa & wellness centers, art galleries and theaters, Tahoe-Truckee ski resorts, visitor attractions and parks — even pet friendly travel. All of the magazine’s archived article and blog posts — more than 1,000 of them — are tailored for smart-phone reading.

Grass Valley

Mother’s Day Springtime Event
Empire Mine State Historic Park
Grass Valley, CA
Sunday, May 11, 2014
11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Beautiful fountains, rose gardens in bloom, and lavish, turn-of-the-century costumes, will make this a Mother’s Day she’ll never forget! She’ll enjoy chatting with docents portraying the colorful characters who shaped our local history. Don’t miss free surprises in the gift shop and blacksmith shop, and delicious food and beverages. Grandmothers and children under 6 enjoy free admission. Turn our golden history into a golden memory!

Sierra Festival of the Arts
Historic Downtown Grass Valley
Sunday, May 25, 2014
10:00 am. – 5:00 p.m.

Over 40 artists throughout Northern California converge in Downtown Grass Valley, Memorial Day weekend, to bring you a “symphony for your senses.” There will be incredible, gallery quality art in a variety of media, and music by young local artists. Children 12 and under can enjoy and art projects with the help of The Artist Workshop. All downtown shops, restaurants, and tasting rooms will be open throughout the event. The Festival is a collaboration Grass Valley Downtown Association and Nevada County Arts and is FREE to the public.

The Center for the Arts presents
 Two Great Concerts at the Veterans Memorial Auditorium in Grass Valley, CA

Shawn Colvin & Steve Earle, Songs & Stories Together Onstage
Friday, May 23 – 8:00 p.m.
Veterans Memorial Auditorium
225 South Auburn Street, Grass Valley, CA 95945
$45 members, $55 non-member

Grammy Award winning singer-songwriters Shawn Colvin and Steve Earle have announced a special run of tour dates together this May. “Songs and Stories, Together Onstage” features the two esteemed artists sharing the stage for a rousing night of song swapping, duets, storytelling and stellar guitar playing. The evening promises to be a rich and inspiring musical experience as these two long-time friends and mutual admirers share music from their extensive catalogues as well as some of their favorite songs by other classic songwriters.

Thursday, July 17, 8:00 p.m.
Veterans Memorial Auditorium
225 South Auburn Street, Grass Valley, CA 95945
$58 members, $68 non-member

Whether alone with her guitar or fronting a band of ace musicians, Jewel has always been a charismatic live performer, earning the respect of other singer-songwriters such as Merle Haggard, Bob Dylan and Neil Young, who, not only invited her to open their shows, but mentored her in the early phases of her career. After a tremendous amount of success as a singer-songwriter and over 27 million albums sold, Jewel released a Greatest Hits album in 2013. The album features a collection of her most known songs as well as two new duets with Kelly Clarkson and The Pistol Annies, in addition to a new track called “Two Hearts Breaking.” She also starred as June Carter Cash in the Lifetime biopic “Ring of Fire,” which earned four Emmy nominations.

Gold Rush Days
Historic Downtown Grass Valley
Saturday, June 21 & Sunday, June 22, 2014
10:00 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Take a step back in time to the 1850′s where gold was king in Grass Valley and Nevada County as historic downtown Grass Valley is transformed the time when people came from all over the world to mine here with the hope of hitting “the Mother lode.” On Saturday night, kick your heels up at an old-fashioned “hoe down” and enjoy a chuckwagon BBQ. Sunday morning “Cowboy Church” followed by a “flap jack” breakfast. Featured attractions over the two day FREE event include:

• Empire Mine Historic State Park- Living History, Blacksmith, Gold Panning and mining equipment exhibit.
• Local history writers (on hand for autographs and questions).
• Dr. Solars Magical Medicine Show.
• The Humbug Band.
• Rough and Ready Chamber of Commerce presents – Succession Days reenactment.
• Learn to hand weave with an old fashioned loom.
• Old fashioned keg sarsaparilla (made just for this event) and Cornish Pasties.
• Old Time Pictures Saturday night

Nevada City

Nevada City First Friday Art Walk
Throughout Downtown Nevada City
Friday, May 2 and June 6
5:00 – 9:00 p.m.

A celebration of Nevada City’s diverse mix of galleries, boutiques and wonderfully creative community! Every first Friday of every month downtown businesses will stay open until 9pm and will be hosting artist receptions, live musical performances, trunk shows and much more!

Nevada City Adult Soapbox Derby
Nevada City, CA
Saturday, June 21, 2014
Starts at noon

Build for ART, Build for SPEED and Build for FUN – that is GREEN! It is a GRAVITY POWERED event, fueled only by the creativity and imagination of the participants! The race is also a benefit for Pioneer Park improvement projects and helps fund additional amenities within the park such as Bocce Ball courts, a sand volleyball court, additional seating areas around the pool, and a multi-use (bicycling/jogging/walking) pathway within the park boundaries. Applications are being taken now.

4th of July Parade and Celebration
Downtown Nevada City

Friday, July 4, 2014
Parade starts at 11 a.m.

The festive parade comes down Broad Street in Nevada City. Parade-goers are advised to bring lawn chairs and arrive early to find a good vantage point. The Nevada County Concert Band performs a curbside pre-parade concert an hour prior to the parade, and continues to provide intermittent music throughout the parade.

Following the parade is a traditional family celebration under the pines at the Nevada County Fairgrounds in Grass Valley. Live music and entertainment, food and refreshments are offered. The fireworks spectacular blasts off at 9:30 p.m. Fairgrounds gates open at 3 p.m. and entertainment begins at 4 p.m.


Donner Lake Paddleboard Race/O’Neill Tahoe Paddleboard Race Series
Donner Lake, Truckee
Race #1 – Saturday, May 24, 2014 starting at 9:00 a.m.

The 2014 O’Neill Tahoe SUP & Prone Paddleboard Race Series will host 500+ participants and more than 4,000 spectators from all over the world to the Truckee-Tahoe-Reno area. Race #1 starts at West-end Beach of Donner Lake and is a five mile race that circumnavigates the Lake. Awards will be presented to both the men’s and women’s first, second, and third place finishers in the Open (including youth 18 and under and masters 55+), Elite, and Outrigger divisions .

Truckee Running Festival
Riverview Sports Park, Truckee
Saturday, June 7, 2014
Sign In Starts at 7:00 a.m.

Bring the whole family out for a beautiful morning of trail running along the beautiful Truckee River. The race starts and finishes at the Riverview Sports Park in Truckee. Try a 5K or 10K along the Legacy Trail or a Half Marathon (part of the 2012 Trail Runner Magazine Trophy Series) featuring the scenic trails and single track of Waddle Ranch. Shorter kid’s races are scheduled throughout the morning. The Truckee Running Festival is part of The Tahoe Trail Running Series which offers a unique set of running races for all ages and abilities.

Truckee Thursdays
Historic Downtown Truckee
Every Thursday – June 12 – August 21, 2014
5:00 – 9:00 p.m.

From mid-June through August, Thursday night in Downtown Truckee is a special experience for people of all ages – residents, tourists and participants alike. The Truckee Downtown Merchants Association is proud of the growth and popularity of “TT”, one of the most successful promotions in Downtown Truckee. The event features a Certified Farmers’ Market, food vendors, merchant and community displays, as well as great entertainment, children’s activities and a beer garden. Free and this is a “Rain or Shine” event!

Truckee 4th of July Parade
Downtown Truckee
Friday, July 4, 2014
10:00 a.m. – Noon

Truckee’s 4th of July Parade is the quintessential display of small town Americana!

The parade begins at 10:00 am at the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District parking lot at the west end of town, and progresses 1-1/2 miles down Donner Pass Road into historic downtown Truckee, ending around noon.

Truckee Tahoe AirShow and Family Festival
Truckee Tahoe Airport
Saturday, July 12, 2014
8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

The 2014 AirShow will highlight “Women in Aviation”, the U.S. Air Force Parachute Team “Wings of Blue”, several world-renowned aerobatic pilots, Vendor Village, static aircraft displays with pilot docents, Kids’ Zone, free flight for kids on July 13 and more.
Admission is FREE and all event proceeds from vendor booth sales, food sales, and other miscellaneous items go to local youth organizations.

(Photos:, Nevada County Cycling Challenge, Charles and Virginia Diffey, North Columbia Schoolhouse Cultural Center, Empire Mine State Historic Park, The Center for the Arts, Nevada City First Friday Art Walk, Nevada City Chamber of Commerce, Tahoe Adventure & Oar, Truckee Tahoe AirShow)

Nevada City named one of the top 15 small cities in California

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Cities Journal has named Nevada City one of the top 15 small cities in California. Here’s what it wrote:

“Frommer’s calls the ‘entire town’ of Nevada City a historical landmark. They ranked the town among the nine ‘Best small towns and villages’ in California. In 1856, however, it was actually the third largest city in the state of California.

“While the name ‘Nevada City’ rings with echoes of Las Vegas glitz and glamour, the town’s foundation was a much more dangerous and high-stakes sort of gambling.

“If you’re a fan of the 49ers, this is where they get their name: Nevada City was established in 1849, when settlers moved to the Old West in search of gold and took their Victorian architecture and design aesthetics along for the ride.

“A town that was once rich with gold is now rich with preserved history, but it’s not limited to gold rush relics.

“Frommer’s notes that you can even see real-life possessions of the infamous Donner Party in Nevada City; also, that it was along the Nevada City trail that the eight-family wagon party made gruesome history. However, the environment is much more forgiving now.

“Forests and rivers surround Nevada City’s historic downtown streets. Some of these rivers were popular spots for gold panning when, according to The Great Towns of Northern California, Nevada City was a California ‘mother lode’ of gold.

“Surprisingly, you can actually participate in some gold panning of your own; in 2008, the gold market started booming again, and parts of the river are favorite spots for old-school prospectors.

“Classic saloons, welcoming and romantic bed-and-breakfasts, and old-school movie theaters share space with specialty antique shops that display artifacts from the town’s glory days as a gold hub.

“You can even spend the night in the record-setting National Hotel, which the Chamber of Commerce says has been in operation since the 1850s, longer than any hotel west of the Rocky Mountains.”

The article is here.

(Photo: James Gaither/Flickr)