Carson Conversation: Transitioning into the events season (Voices)

As we transition out of our forced hibernation over the past two years caused by the pandemic, we can’t help but wonder how this season’s large and small events will attract the number of attendees enjoyed pre-pandemic.

For Northern Nevada, events have been the lifeblood of each community that were abruptly halted in March 2020. Since then, so many restrictions have been placed in the name of protecting the population that attending an event can cause personal anxiety whereas prior we just said, “let’s go!”

As we listen to the constant barrage by the media about a new COVID strain that, as of this writing, has some parts of China once again on complete lockdown, it can cause panic for the event planner and wariness on the part of the guest. It takes a lot of pre-planning to pull off a successful event and to cancel at the last minute can be devastating to all.

In Carson City, events are the lifeblood of many businesses beginning Memorial Day and ending with the granddaddy event of them all, Nevada Day.

For residents, it’s the opportunity to reconnect with their neighbors, see what is new in the community, and plan ahead for the visiting of friends and relatives.

Though Carson City does not have the local infrastructure to host large signature events as does Reno/Sparks to attract nationwide and international visitors, our events are important no matter how small, for these events bring the community together and keep our local identity strong, or as we like to say, “Carson Proud.” A number of our larger events attract visitors who bring in new dollars.

Even Reno’s largest signature events attract overflow to this city as well as give the organizers a smaller venue to piggy back on to the main event. Think Hot August Nights and Street Vibrations.

Some of our most popular signature events benefit our important non-profits such as the very popular Taste of Downtown to be held on June 18. This event draws people from within the region to showcase all that is new to the downtown while showcasing local restaurants and most importantly getting out the message of the host, Advocates to End Domestic Violence.

The organizers hope to attract pre-pandemic numbers.

The Downtown Wine Walk has returned the first Saturday of the month and is gaining momentum as those who enjoy wine, camaraderie, and the chance to shop return in larger numbers each month as further restrictions continue to be lifted. For those who prefer a cold brew, Rotary will host its once-annual Capital City Brewfest June 25 to benefit their scholarship programs.

New this year is the Great Western Steam Up, July 1-4 ending with the traditional patriotic July 4 fireworks. A presentation of the Nevada State Railroad Museum, this event will bring in train buffs from all over the U.S. along with unique rolling stock to include nine visiting steam locomotives to make up the largest collection of V&T locomotives in one location since the 1930s.

What would Carson City be without the Nevada Day Parade! This beloved event originated in Reno and then moved to Carson City in 1938 becoming one of the largest Admission Day parades in the U.S. On Saturday, Oct. 29, Carson City’s history will shine, for after all, it’s here where the history of Nevada began.

Already in the planning stage is Mark Twain Days slated for April 21, 2023, to celebrate the life of this famous writer who became known as Mark Twain during his time in Carson City where he lived with his brother Orion Clemens from 1861-1864. Stay tuned.

There are many history focused events to attract visitors during the traditional events season. A full list of all events can be found by accessing the Chamber Community Calendar All are cordially invited to see what makes Carson City so unique.
“Carson Conversation” is a monthly NNBW Voices column authored by Ronni Hannaman, executive director of the Carson City Chamber of Commerce. Reach her for comment at


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