Category Archives: Truckee

Come celebrate In Nevada County – California State Parks turns 150 years old this year!

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This year the California State Parks commemorates the 1864 establishment of the first state park in the world.

On June 30, 1864, President Abraham Lincoln signed a bill granting 39,000 acres of Yosemite Valley and the Mariposa Big Tree Grove to the State of California. Never before had land been set aside to protect its natural state for the public to enjoy. This historic legislation was the beginning of not only the California State Park System, but the national park idea we know today. Click here to access the new History of California State Parks brochure.

Nevada County, CA has four California State Parks within its jurisdiction and we welcome your visit. Plan on spending a day or two to explore the rich history that each of these State Parks have to offer.

Empire Mine State Historic Park, located in Grass Valley, is the site of one of the oldest, largest, deepest, longest and richest gold mines in California. In existence for more than 100 years, the mine produced 5.6 million ounces of gold before it closed in 1956. (5.6 million ounces of gold is equivalent to a box seven feet long, seven feet high, and seven feet deep filled with gold.) The park contains many of the mine’s buildings, the owner’s home and restored gardens, as well as the entrance to 367 miles (the distance, as the crow flies, from Grass Valley to Magic Mountain) of abandoned and flooded mine shafts. The park consists of forested backcountry and eight miles of trails – including easy hikes (for hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding) – in the park.

On Saturday, August 23 from 11 AM to 4 PM, the Mine will host the 119th Miners Picnic. Since 1895, the Miners Picnic has been a picnic, a tradition – and tons of fun for all ages. It’s a rare chance to picnic on the stately grounds near fountains, vintage rose gardens and majestic trees. Bring your own lunch (as well as blankets and chairs) or purchase good food, ice cream and beverages from popular local vendors. Enjoy real gold panning, an old-fashioned cakewalk and the Search for the Gold Challenge, games and fun for all. Docents in period costumes bring history to life. They’ll be welcoming visitors at historic Empire Cottage. The Mine Yard will be buzzing with activity, including a dramatic mine rescue reenactment at high noon.

South Yuba River State Park is located in Penn Valley. This 20-mile portion of the South Yuba River canyon stretches from Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park to Bridgeport covered bridge. The area includes the longest single-span covered bridge in the world, the steep rugged canyon of the South Yuba River, and the Independence Trail – the first identified wheelchair-accessible wilderness trail in the country. Visitors can view fast water pouring over massive granite ledges in the spring and warm, slow moving emerald swimming holes during the late summer. Families can also enjoy panning for gold, beautiful wildflowers in the spring, and docent-led history, nature and gold-panning tours throughout the year.

Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park, located in Nevada City is the site of California’s largest “hydraulic” mine. Visitors can see huge cliffs carved by mighty streams of water, results of the gold mining technique of washing away entire mountains to find the precious metal. Legal battles between mine owners and downstream farmers ended this method. The park also contains a 7,847 foot bedrock tunnel that served as a drain. The visitor center has exhibits on life in the old mining town of North Bloomfield.

Donner Memorial State Park, is located in the Eastern region of Nevada County near the quaint town of Historic Truckee. Visitors are welcome year-round at the Emigrant Trail Museum and at the Pioneer Monument, built to commemorate those who emigrated to California from the east in the mid-1800′s. Included in the museum are displays and information about one of the earliest pioneer wagon trains, the Donner Party, forced by circumstances to camp at the east end of Donner Lake in the winter of 1846-47, resulting in human suffering and loss of life. Located in the beautiful Sierra Nevada, Donner Memorial State Park offers the summer vacationer opportunities for camping, picnicking, boating, fishing, water-skiing, and hiking. In winter, visitors can cross-country ski and snowshoe on trails and enjoy the season’s beauty.

For more historic park sites, visit

(Source: Nevada County Tourism, Lani Lott)

What’s Up in Nevada County August through October, 2014

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What’s up in Nevada County August, September and October 2014:


Nevada County Exhibit Awarded Silver Ribbon at 2014 California State Fair
Nevada County Tourism

Each year the County of Nevada is invited to participate in the California State Fair’s Counties Exhibits competition. For over 100 years, the Counties Exhibit Program has been one of the most popular attractions at the annual State Fair. With more than 700,000 visitors in just 17 days, counties are able to widely market and showcase the best and brightest of their area. Each three-dimensional interactive exhibit is uniquely tailored to highlight the special features of the county.

This year Counties Exhibits’ theme is “From Our County to Your Table” with the intention of highlighting the agricultural features of each participating County. Nevada County Tourism is very proud to announce that Nevada County’s Exhibit was awarded a Silver Ribbon at the July 11 State Fair Award Ceremony. The County Exhibit will be on display at the California State Fair in the Counties Exhibits Building from July 11 through July 27, 2014. The award winning County Exhibit will then travel up to Grass Valley and be on display at the Nevada County Fair – August 6 – August 10 in the Ag Sperience area.

Stars at North Star House Jazz Series
North Star House
12183 Auburn Road, Grass Valley, CA
Sunday, July 27; Sunday, August 24; Sunday, September 28
Gates open at 5:00 p.m.
$45/BYLT members; $55 Not yet members

The Bear Yuba Land Trust will host a series of three Sunday afternoon concerts at the historic North Star House featuring some of jazz music’s greatest stars and local Nevada County talent. The Stars at North Star House Jazz Series will kick off Sunday, July 27 with internationally celebrated contemporary jazz pianist and composer David Benoit. Local favorites, The Sierra-5 from the Sierra Jazz Society will perform blues jazz on Sunday, August 24 followed by Poncho Sanchez and his Latin Jazz Band who will bring the series to a fiery conclusion on Sunday, September 28.

During all three jazz concerts, a variety of food vendors will be available during the event for general admission ticket holders. A cash bar will be open throughout the events. Groups who desire to “upscale” their picnics during the August and September concerts can reserve a table for eight for $80, and pre-order boxed picnic dinners for $20 (choice of chicken or vegetarian). Local favorite Christopher’s Deli will provide a boxed picnic dinner for the August 24 concert and caterer Antonio Ayestaran Custom Catering will prepare a Latin-themed box dinner for the September – Poncho Sanchez concert. For those not sitting at tables, it is advised to bring low-legged, low-back chairs for lawn seating. For more information, visit

Nevada County Fair
Nevada County Fairgrounds
11228 McCourtney Rd, Grass Valley, CA
Wednesday, August 6 – Sunday, August 10

The Nevada County Fair offers five full days of excitement and fun for fair-goers of all ages. This event is the perfect opportunity to enjoy live entertainment, delicious food, carnival rides, animals and exhibits in a community-friendly environment and at affordable family prices! Experience special arena events every evening, ranging from rodeo to Monster Trucks, to Destruction Derby. Highlights include free entertainment on multiple stages, contests, demonstrations and exhibits. For more information, visit

BBQ Battle and Foreign Car & Motorcycle Show
Western Gateway Park
Penn Valley, CA
Saturday, August 16

United Way of Nevada County is gearing up for its Annual Barbeque Battle/Foreign Car & Motorcycle Show – one big show of autos, food, live music and fun. The “Foreign Car Show” portion, in collaboration with the Sierra Sports Car Group, features vintage foreign vehicles on display. The BBQ Battle portion will offer barbecue tastings for judging. For more information, visit

2014 Sierra BrewFest – An Epic Afternoon of Sun, Suds and Fun
Nevada County Fairgrounds
11228 McCourtney Rd., Grass Valley, CA
Saturday, August 23
3:00 – 6:30 PM
$30 Advance; $35 At Door; $10 Non-tasters; Children Free

A unique, unlimited microbrew tasting experience. Sample over 100 hand-crafted beers. Enjoy delicious food from some of the best local food trucks and restaurants. For more information, visit

Strawberry Music Festival
Nevada County Fairgrounds
11228 McCourtney Rd., Grass Valley, CA
Thursday, September 11 – Sunday September 14

The Nevada County Fairgrounds is pleased to announce that this year’s Strawberry Music Festival will be held at the beautiful tree-covered Nevada County Fairgrounds in Grass Valley. This popular music festival – which features four days of music, camping and recreation – draws thousands of musicians, entertainers, and music enthusiasts from across the United States each year. The festival features a wide range of musical acts, representing many different musical genres, including Americana, bluegrass, blues, folk, swing, rock, Cajun, Celtic and gospel.

Last year, Strawberry Music’s Fall Festival was cancelled due to the Rim Fire that burned around their festival home near Yosemite. After being denied a permit for this year’s fall festival at Camp Mather, they came to the Nevada County Fairgrounds to ask for sanctuary so that the festival could continue. For more information, visit

Draft Horse Classic and Harvest Festival
Nevada County Fairgrounds
11228 McCourtney Rd, Grass Valley, CA
Thursday, September 18 – Sunday, September 21

Join the beautiful Draft Horses at the 2014 Draft Horse Classic. Majestic Draft Horse performances, breath-taking competitions, and seeing a Draft Horse “up-close” – it’s all part of the Annual Draft Horse Classic and Harvest Fair. The Classic has grown to become the premier Draft Horse show in the western United States, and features six majestic performances, along with non-stop entertainment in between classes. Between the Draft Horse performances, the Harvest Festival is bustling with activity. Visit the barns and meet the horses, taste the delicious Treat Street goodies, stroll through the Western Art Show or sit and enjoy the live entertainment. For more information, visit

Bounty of the County – A Celebration of Nevada County Agriculture
Nevada County Fairgrounds
11228 McCourtney Rd., Grass Valley, CA
Sunday, September 21
1:00 PM – 4:00 PM

Bring your appetite to this fun and delicious event, hosted by Nevada County Grown. Bounty of the County is a pairing of fabulous local chefs with the produce and meats of Nevada County Grown farmers and ranchers. This is local, fresh, and delicious food at its best – and a feast for your palate. In addition to great food, vendors will be selling Nevada County Grown products; there will be information booths, children’s activities, music by local musicians and a number of free demonstrations. For more information, visit

The Center for the Arts presents
 Fall Colors Open Studios and Art Tour of Nevada County
Saturday, October 5 and Sunday, October 6
Saturday, October 12 and Sunday October 13

Visit 74 local artists in 34 studios this October and see where art is made, displayed, and appreciated in Nevada County. Featuring painters, printmakers, photographers, ceramicists, illustrators, jewelers, designers, woodworkers and more, you will have the opportunity to meet the artists, view new work, and buy original art in a wide range of media & styles. See their workspace, watch live demonstrations, observe works in progress and learn about an art process from concept to completion. Beyond an art sale, Open Studios is a chance to experience first-hand how, where and why art is created. For more information, visit

Grass Valley

Tess’ Kitchen Store launches new monthly cooking series, “Chef’s Table” led by Alan Tangren, who worked at Chez Panisse restaurant in Berkeley.
115 Mill Street, Historic Downtown Grass Valley, CA

Guests will gather around the kitchen at Tess’ while Chef Alan prepares a themed menu paired with wines. The ingredients are always fresh and local whenever possible. Alan Tangren was responsible for “Foraging” the ingredients for Chez Panisse for seven years. He helped write two of Alice Waters cookbooks contributing the content on ingredients.

Throughout the six-course meal, Alan will provide expert cooking advice in a friendly, approachable style. Alan will also be teaching “Thursday Night Market Forage” this summer where he will lead a tour of Grass Valley Downtown Association’s Thursday Night Market and return to the kitchen and prepare a delicious dish. Under owner Steve Rosenthal, Tess’ Kitchen Store is becoming a regional hub and is the largest store of its kind in the region, with 6,200 square-feet in a striking three-story structure. For more information, visit

119th Miners Picnic at Empire Mine
Empire Mine State Historic Park
Grass Valley, CA
Saturday, August 23
11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Everyone’s invited to this once-a-year, action-packed event. Since 1895, the Miners Picnic has been a picnic, a tradition – and tons of fun for all ages – only in California! It’s a rare chance to picnic on the stately grounds near fountains, vintage rose gardens and majestic trees. Relive the days of gold, grit and glory when Empire Mine ranked as one of the largest, oldest and most prosperous hard-rock gold mines in North America.

Bring your own lunch (as well as blankets and chairs) – or purchase good food, ice cream and beverages from popular local vendors. Enjoy real gold panning, an old-fashioned cakewalk and the Search for the Gold Challenge, games and fun for all. Docents in period costumes bring history to life. They’ll be welcoming visitors at historic Empire Cottage. The Mine Yard will be buzzing with activity, including a dramatic mine-rescue reenactment at high noon. Will the rescue team get there in time to save the injured miners? (There’s only one way to find out.) The first Miners Picnics raised money for miners’ widows and orphans. Today, we celebrate our colorful, local history. For more information, visit

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

Melissa Etheridge: This is ME Solo
Friday, September 19 – 8:00 p.m.
Veterans Memorial Auditorium
225 South Auburn Street, Grass Valley, CA
$68 members, $78 non-member

The Center for the Arts is pleased to bring rock legend Melissa Etheridge to Grass Valley’s Veterans Memorial Auditorium. A limited run in an intimate setting, Melissa will be playing acoustic guitar, electric guitar, harmonica and piano. Etheridge says, “I enjoy doing the solo shows not only get to ready for a new album, I also love to dive into my catalogue of songs and bring a new freshness to my older material. It is such an intimate experience with the audience, and it is truly one of my favorite ways to perform.” For more information and to purchase tickets, visit

Lee Ann Womack
Friday, October 24 – 8:00 p.m.
Veterans Memorial Auditorium
225 South Auburn Street, Grass Valley, CA
$40 members, $50 non-member

Lee Ann Womack never intended to go almost seven years between records, but she knew when she released new music, she wanted it to be very special. For the Grammy-winner who’s one of the rare women to win the prestigious Country Music Association’s Album of the Year, she wanted an album made purely for the sake of the songs and the spark of the musical performances. That album – the eagerly anticipated The Way I’m Livin’ was produced by Frank Liddell (Miranda Lambert, David Nail) and features the songs of Chris Knight, Mindy Smith, Buddy Miller, Mando Saenz, Hayes Carll, Neil Young, Bruce Robison and one cagey cover lifted from Roger Miller. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit

Nevada City

Nevada City’s Farm to Table Dinner
Downtown Historic Nevada City, CA
Sunday, August 10
7:00 – 11:00 PM
Tickets $75 plus 18% gratuity

Come August 10th a small army of volunteers will transform the normally busy street in historic downtown Nevada City into an enchanting setting with the 150 year old New Orleans style buildings and full ‘Sturgeon Moon’ as the backdrop. Produced by Reinette Senum and catering overseen by Shanan Manuel’s Feast & Gathering Organic Catering, this is community affair with organic meals prepared by a host of neighboring restaurants: Matteo’s Public, Three Forks Bakering & Brewing Co., Café Mekka, Pete’s Pizza, The Crazy Horse Bar and Grill, The Fix, and Treats Ice Cream. The Chamber will be serving a local wine and beer at its open bar.

Participating farms include: Dinner Bell, First Rain, Mountain Bounty, River Hill, The Food Love Project, Jim Gates’ Nevada County Beef, Soil Sisters, Angie’s Little Boy Blue, and Reed Hamilton Grains, to name a few. As the evening unfolds a 12-piece band, The Earles of Newtown, will begin playing at 8:30pm and promises to transport the crowd to New Orleans with their rich and colorful sounds of the south. To purchase tickets, visit

Miners Foundry Cultural Center presents Three Exciting Concerts:

Jerry Bash 2004
Saturday, August 2
Pioneer Park, Nevada City, CA
4:00 – 10:00 p.m.
$20 admission

Jerry Bash 2014 is a community celebration featuring music, food, drinks, art, and vendors. The day will be headlined by the DeadBeats in a 20th anniversary reunion concert. The DeadBeats formed during the Summer of 1994 on the notion they could pull off some reasonable Grateful Dead covers. Soon it was apparent the band was on to something, a certain indefinable sound and feel that really captures the essence of a Dead show. Though band members have come and gone over the years, Tom, Paul, and Gary have remained the core of the band, providing a solid continuity to the DeadBeat sound. Jerry Bash 2004 also features music by Achilles Wheel, T-Buck & the Bad Dreams, Cheatin’ Buzzies, and Scary Little Friends. To learn more or to purchase tickets, visit

MarchFourth Marching Band
Miners Foundry Cultural Center
325 Spring Street, Nevada City, CA
Friday, August 8
Doors Open at 7:30 PM; Show at 9:00 PM
Tickets $22 advance/$26 General

With a rallying cry of “Joy Now!”, MarchFourth throws itself and the audience into a swirling volcano of high-energy music and spectacle. MarchFourth Marching Band (M4 to its fans) is a kaleidoscope of musical and visual energy that inspires dancing in an atmosphere of celebration.

More about M4: Aside from their marching band themed costumes, as well as the 5-piece percussion corps and 6-part brass section, M4 is far from a “marching band” in any traditional sense (though this group of 15-20 has been known to parade down Main Street before taking the stage). M4 is anchored by funky electric bass and has been evolving into a more guitar- and vocal-driven musical experience. The show will take you on a journey from the swamps of Louisiana to the gypsy camps of eastern Europe to the African jungle by way of Brazil, echoing the deepest grooves of American funk, rock, and jazz then boiling it all together in cinematic fashion with high-stepping stilt-acrobatics and dazzling dancers.

This genre-busting, in-your-face experience is not to be missed! What began as a Fat Tuesday party in Portland, Oregon on March 4th 2003 has since become one of the nation’s best live touring acts. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit

Iris DeMent – “Go On Ahead and Go Home”
Miners Foundry Cultural Center
325 Spring Street, Nevada City, CA
Thursday, October 23
Doors Open at 6:30 PM; Music Begins at 7:30 PM
Tickets are $28 Advance General; $32 Door General; $40 Limited Reserve

The Miners Foundry Cultural Center is thrilled to welcome back one of the most celebrated country-folk performers of her day, singer/songwriter Iris DeMent. At the age of three, her devoutly religious family moved to California, where she grew up singing gospel music; during her teenaged years, however, she was first exposed to country, folk, and R&B, drawing influence from Loretta Lynn, Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, and Joni Mitchell. DeMent first began composing songs at the age of 25. Honing her skills at open-mic nights she won almost universal acclaim thanks to her pure, evocative vocal style and spare, heartfelt song craft. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit

Piety Hill Cottages Motel and B&B


Recognized as a Top Performing Lodging Accommodation as Reviewed by Travelers on the World’s Largest Travel Site, Piety Hill Cottages Motel and Bed & Breakfast, a lodging facility in Nevada City, Ca; serving singles, couples and families since 1933, received a TripAdvisor® Certificate of Excellence award.

The accolade, which honors hospitality excellence, is given only to establishments that consistently achieve outstanding traveler reviews on TripAdvisor, and is extended to qualifying businesses worldwide. Establishments awarded the Certificate of Excellence are located all over the world and represent the upper echelon of businesses listed on the website. When selecting Certificate of Excellence winners, TripAdvisor uses a proprietary algorithm to determine the honorees that takes into account reviews ratings. Businesses must maintain an overall TripAdvisor bubble rating of at least four out of five, volume and recency of reviews. “TripAdvisor is pleased to honor exceptional hospitality businesses for consistent excellence,” said Marc Charron, President of TripAdvisor for Business. “The Certificate of Excellence award gives top performing establishments around the world the recognition they deserve, based on feedback from those who matter most – their customers. From Australia to Zimbabwe, we want to applaud exceptional hospitality businesses for offering TripAdvisor travelers a great customer experience.” For more information, visit

Nevada City Film Festival
Historic Downtown Nevada City, CA
Thursday, September 4 – Sunday, September 7

The Nevada City Film Festival screens over 100 films in a variety of historic locations in downtown Nevada City. Comedies, dramas, documentaries, animation and international shorts, this festival have it all. By combining creative programming of short and full-length films, enthusiastic audiences and a truly festive environment, Nevada City Film Festival has become known as one of the most innovative, fun, and artist-friendly events on the film festival circuit. For more information, visit

Nevada City Uncorked
Historic Downtown Nevada City, CA
Saturday, September 6, 2014
1:00 PM – 4:00 PM

Nevada City Uncorked is an amazing food and wine event celebrating the agricultural bounty of Nevada County. It’s a walk-about-town style format that includes 20 different venues throughout Historic Downtown Nevada City. Each venue, whether it is a retail shop, restaurant, or winery tasting room, will include wine tasting and food sampling.

This year’s event will feature a farm-to-table theme between the local farmers, participating restaurants and caterers who will transform the fresh materials into signature dishes. The wineries, in addition to pouring their favorite wines, will highlight their newest release of the season in celebration of the upcoming harvest. For more information, visit

Constitution Day 2014
Historic Downtown Nevada City
Saturday, September 13 and Sunday, September 14

The 48th Annual Constitution Day Parade tops a weekend of festivities in this historic California Gold Rush town. Nevada City’s Constitution Day Parade has been a local tradition since 1967 and is reported to be the oldest and largest Constitution observance in western America. The 2 p.m. Sunday parade features more than 100 entries and culminates other activities including Revolutionary War Living History in Pioneer Park, the Gold Country Duck Race on Deer Creek. The parade through the downtown historic district includes marching bands, floats, antique autos, equestrians, politicians and perennial crowd favorites such as the Ophir Prison Marching Kazoo Band and the Famous Marching Presidents of Nevada City, a humorous but reverent group that portrays each U.S. president.

 The Delaware Regiment of the American Revolution will be offering living history demonstrations of Revolutionary War soldiers drilling and firing, drilling of kids with mock muskets and hats, music by the California Consolidated Drum Band, and colonial life living history. Flag raising to music and reading of the Declaration of Independence will be at 9am each day, and activities conclude at 5pm on Saturday and 12pm on Sunday. Friends of Nevada County Military presents an exhibition of photos of service men and women from Nevada County who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. Exhibit at City Hall, 317 Broad Street: Saturday Noon to 4:30pm; Sunday 12:30 to 2pm. For more information, visit

The Famous Marching Presidents – Constitution Day Parade
Historic Downtown Nevada City
2:00 p.m.

The Famous Marching Presidents number nearly 200 Presidents, first ladies, secret service and volunteers – all residents of Nevada City, California, a small town of 3,000 nestled in the Gold Country of the Sierra Foothills. Marching since 1988, our Presidents, First Ladies, and Secret Service agents have become a dynamic part of Nevada City’ historic observances and local heritage.

The Marching Presidents is the highlight of Nevada City’s Annual Constitution Day Parade, which has been a local tradition since 1967 and is reported to be the oldest and largest Constitution observance in western America. Only in California could a state assemble nearly 200 Presidents, first ladies and secret service and have them march together! For more information, visit


Donner Party Hike
Donner Summit, Truckee, CA
Saturday, October 4 and Sunday, October 5

The unforgiving Sierra Nevada winter of 1846-47 started early, setting the stage for what was to become an incredibly agonizing story of human desperation and determination. In April of 1846 the Donner Party set out to reach California. A series of errors, mishaps and tragedy followed in their footsteps. Reaching the base of the Sierra just as an early winter storm set in, their fate was sealed, forcing them to stay the winter. Split into two camps, one at the base of what is now Donner Lake, and the other at Alder Creek, the emigrants faced unimaginable perils. Relief finally came in March, with few of the original party surviving.

The annual Donner Party Hike offers two days of emigrant history. Choose from seven guided hikes that will explore different aspects of emigrant and early Truckee history while enjoying dramatic Sierra Nevada scenery. Guides lead groups of approximately 15–20 people to interpretive spots while sharing detailed information along the trail. Saturday hikes will begin and end at Sugar Bowls’ Mount Judah Lodge located on Highway 40 on Donner Summit. In the afternoon enjoy a hamburger lunch and an afternoon presentation by Ethan Rarick, author of Desperate Passage – the Donner Party’s Perilous Journey. Sunday’s walking tours focus specifically on the tragedy of the Donner Party. We start at Alder Creek, where the Donner family was forced to stay the winter. Hear of the grueling travel and mishaps of the Donner Party and the archeological finds at this location. Only in California! For more information, visit

Downtown Truckee Wine, Walk & Shop
Historic Downtown Truckee
Saturday, October 4
Noon to 4:00 PM
Tickets $40 advance/$45 day of event

Now in its 11th year, The Downtown Truckee Wine, Walk & Shop has established itself as one of Truckee’s preeminent events. This annual favorite brings nearly 1,000 locals and tourists to historic downtown Truckee to sip wine, taste scrumptious food samples and enjoy shopping.

Every year the event partner’s with a local non-profit organization. Over the past 10 years the event has donated more than $25,000 to local non-profits. Some of our past partners include, Tahoe Safe Alliance, Girls on the Run, The Humane Society of Truckee-Tahoe and Sierra Senior Services. This year their partner is Tahoe Food Hub. Attendees will receive a commemorative wine glass to sample wine at 30+ venues, 5 food tickets and a program with a map to all participating venues. For more information, visit

Truckee’s Haunted Historic Tour
Historic Downtown Truckee
Thursday, October 16 and Friday, October 17

Small groups of visitors from as far away as the east coast, mid west and LA and as nearby as Reno, Sacramento and the San Francisco Bay Area will be immersed in engaging tales performed by talented characters at seven interesting historic sites. This year’s highly anticipated performances will take place in new featured haunts including Bluestone Jewelry, LaGalleria and Tahoe Oil & Spice while returning to a handful of previous favorites including BeSpoke, The Railroad Depot, Truckee’s infamous Masonic Lodge 200 and The Truckee Hotel. Skillfully weaving together dramatic, downright haunting and funny stories inspired by times of yore, this Tour will be complete with treats and tricks. For more information, visit

Five favorite swimming holes in Nevada County

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Nevada County is blessed with an abundance of fresh water swimming holes from Sierra Nevada run-off. Here are five favorites:

#1 Rollins Lake Nestled in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, Rollins Lake average water temperature in the summer is about 72 degrees and has 26 miles of shoreline. A favorite swimming hole is located at the Greenhorn Road access off of Highway 174. Bathrooms and a store on-site.

#2 South Yuba River State Park – Bridgeport Although somewhat remote, a day at the South Yuba River State Park at Bridgeport is well worth the drive! Visitors can enjoy slow moving emerald swimming holes during the late summer. There is a small sandy beach, which is perfect for small children, and bathrooms are available.

#3 Scott’s Flat Lake Scotts Flat Lake off of Highway 20 in Nevada City has a picnic area with swimming, beaches, bar-b-que grills and tables are available. A store, flush toilets and a playground are nearby. The lake is also a boater’s paradise with the marina store providing pre-mixed gas.

#4 West End Beach at Donner Lake West End Beach at Donner Lake located near Truckee is another family favorite swimming hole. The 10-acre day use beach facility offers excellent shaded picnic and barbeque sites for families or groups. American Red Cross Certified Lifeguards supervise the designated swim area.

#5 Bear River At the crossing of Bear River and Hwy 174 is a historic bridge and a trail to the river. It is a relatively easy, approximately two mile hike downstream. There are several smaller trails branching off to the river for swimming and fishing. There is plenty of free parking.

(Source: Visit California, Lani Lott)

Outdoor fun in the Tahoe National Forest and Truckee

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Summer is upon us and the weather is warm and spectacular. This is the best time of the year in the Tahoe National Forest to enjoy camping with friends and family surrounded by beautiful landscapes and pristine lakes. Join us at any one of our 10 beautiful camping areas.

The charming little town of Truckee is famous for world class skiing and record snowfall, but sometimes is overlooked when the snow disappears. However, when the seasons change and the Sierra is warmed by the enviable California sun, Truckee becomes a focal point for all things recreation and relaxation related. With activities and events ranging from outdoor adventures to family friendly fun, Truckee summers are the Sierra’s best-kept secret.

Truckee offers outdoor activities for all abilities and budgets, including hiking trails that lead to serene glacial lakes, fly-fishing in the meandering Truckee River, mountain biking on trails overlooking the Sierra crest and camping amongst ancient pine trees. What are you waiting for? Come on up and hike, recreate, fish, visit our camp store at the Logger Campground or just relax with your morning coffee and watch the majestic hot air balloons float over Prosser Lake.

There’s no better place to be during the 4th of July than in Truckee! Be entertained by festivals, music, parades, great food – and of course the best fireworks displays you could ever wish for over Donner Lake. Here are some other upcoming July events for you to enjoy:

July 12th — Truckee Tahoe Air Show & Family Festival.

Every Tuesday in July — Free Blues concerts at The Village in Squaw Valley

July 13-14 — Art Wine & Music Festival in Squaw Valley. Squaw Valley’s base village will burst with color, taste, and sound as fine artists, crafts makers, performers and musicians come to participate in this fun, two-day annual event.

July 18-21 — Wanderlust Festival in Squaw Valley. Wanderlust is a one-of-a-kind festival bringing together the world’s best yoga and wellness teachers and top musical acts and DJs, all in a setting of breathtaking natural beauty.

July 26-27 — Donner Lake Triathlon. For more information, visit:

Another great family activity is the Boca Townsite Interpretive Trail located directly across the road from the Boca Dam. The family friendly trail is clearly marked and takes approximately 40 minutes. The Boca Townsite began as a construction camp for the Central Pacific Railroad in 1867, then transitioned to the Boca Mill & Ice Company and later to the Boca Brewery. Boca means “mouth” in Spanish, which is fitting because the town sits at the mouth of the little Truckee River. Because of the proximity to the railroad and nearby stands of fine timber, Boca was a natural site for timber mills that supplied lumber for the railroad snowsheds and towns from Sacramento to Virginia City.

The Boca Hotel once stood on the small knoll and served as an overnight stop for train travelers and housed seasonal workers. The original Victorian hotel burned in 1904. Boca’s demise came from the over harvesting of timber. The sawmill closed in 1908 due to a lack of timber. The Boca Hotel was rebuilt; however, not as elaborate.

(Source, photos: Tahoe Recreation)

Father’s Day Festivities

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Father’s Day began in 1909 in Spokane, WA, when a daughter requested a special day to honor her father, a Civil War veteran who raised his six children after his wife died. Today Father’s Day is celebrated in 50 countries, from Antigua to Zimbabwe.

Far removed from video games, smartphones and other modern-day activities, our region offers some memorable Father’s Day experiences: fishing, bike riding, festivals, picnicking and more. Here are some examples:


The Nevada City Bicycle Classic, on Sunday, June 15, is one of the premiere sporting events in the foothills, the largest and oldest bike race on the West Coast and the second-oldest race in the nation.

The event celebrates its 54th anniversary this year and many of the nation’s top cyclists are expected to be on hand. Action begins at 1 p.m. and is usually complete by about 6:30 p.m.

Several thousand spectators attend the tradi- tional Father’s Day event.

For more information, visit and


The Truckee Father’s Day Ribfest & BBQ is on June 15 at the Tri Counties Bank Plaza (12047 Donner Pass Road) from noon-4 p.m.

Ribs, Rods & Rock-n-Roll is this year’s theme. The event includes classic cars, local rock’n’roll bands for singing and dancing, a beer garden, children’s activities and arts and crafts.

Festival-goers can enjoy delicious ribs and food from local restaurants, including Auburn Barbeque Company, Taco Station and the Resort at Squaw Creek Six Peaks Grille.


The California Bluegrass Association’s Father’s Day Bluegrass Festival is held at the Nevada County Fairgrounds. The four-day festival begins Thursday, June 12 and runs through Sunday (Father’s Day).

For more information, visit

(Source: Sierra FoodWineArt, Photos: Nevada City Bicycle Classic,

Truckee’s Father’s Day RibFest

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Truckee Father’s Day RibFest & BBQ Theme: Ribs, Rods, & Rock-n-Roll
When: Sunday, June 15, 2014, 12 to 4 p.m.
Where: Tri Counties Bank Plaza
12047 Donner Pass Road, Truckee

Be sure to attend the 5th Annual Truckee Father’s Day RibFest & BBQ. Admission is free. The event promises to be an affordable, fun family event with mouth watering ribs and other choices to suit everyone’s appetite.

There will be entertainment and activities that the entire family can enjoy, beer garden, live music provided by The Tahoe School of Music, Ben Martin and Angele and many talented others. There will be a kid’s corner, with Inspired Balloon artist, face painting, concessions including Elevation Hoops, La Fleur Rouge, The Bookshelf, The Truckee Donner Historical Society, novelties including Loon’s Lemons, Cheri’s HandDipped Ice Cream, Whole Treats Bakery, Zano’s Jerky Junction to name a few.

Napa Truckee Auto Parts 4×4 will be sponsoring this year’s Show N Shine and have combined forces with High Sierra Cruisers, bring your car to display or just enjoy other’s beautiful cars! Marty always has an awesome raffle for the dad’s and car buffs.

Six Peak’s Grille Chefs from the Resort at Squaw Creek will be returning for their fifth year to defend their title as reigning champion. We are excited to welcome a first year participant to Truckee’s RibFest: Big Blue Q of Tahoe, a participant of Tahoe City’s GrillFest held last October. Whole Treats Bakery will be serving up some of their delicious treats inside their store.

Looking for last minute gift ideas for dad for Father’s Day? Be sure to bring dad out for an enjoyable day at RibFest and stop into Truckee Hometown SEARS Store for any last minute gifts for dear old dad.

The Riley family, owners of our local Sears store, has generously donated an awesome gas BBQ valued at $400 to the RibFest raffle. Be sure to enter the RibFest raffle for some wonderful gifts for the entire family while supporting Relay For Life of Truckee – Tahoe.

For more information visit

Downtown Truckee Thursdays Begin this Month

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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.

Enjoy one of the best experiences Historic Downtown Truckee has to offer. Watch a short video:

(Source: Downtown Truckee Merchants Assoc.)

2014 Nevada City Dirt Classic Bike Races

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2014 Nevada City Dirt Classic Bike Races

This year’s Nevada City Dirt Classic x-c bike race series dates are June 14, June 29 and July 27. Enjoy trails of Nevada County with three special days of x-c bike racing.

Make it a Father’s Day weekend by participating Saturday, June 14 in Race 1 which features the course at Osborne Hill, Grass Valley, a local’s favorite; this is the most technical course. Stay overnight for the Nevada City Classic Bicycle Race on Sunday, June 15 to watch world-class bicycle riders compete.

Race 2 takes place on Sunday, June 29 and features the Dascombe/Pioneer Trails in the Tahoe National Forest along Highway 20.

Race 3 will be held on Saturday, July 12 also along the Dascombe/Pioneer Trails in the Tahoe National Forest along Highway 20.

The 2014 Nevada City Dirt Classic will be having a Fat Bike racing category, 3.8″ tire minimum.

To register online for this year’s event visit here.

Enjoy all of Nevada County bike trails year-round; see a listing of the trails here.

(Photos: Nevada City Dirt Classic)

Truckee Thursdays announces its music lineup for this summer

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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.

Enjoy one of the best experiences Historic Downtown Truckee has to offer.

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 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)