We spent yesterday in “The Biggest Little City In The World”, Reno NV.
After running a few errands we headed downtown to Reno’s strip, which is nothing like the strip in Las Vegas or even Freemont Street, the old Las Vegas strip. There are several larger casinos but none of the glitzy over the top stuff that Vegas has. I don’t necessarily think this is a bad thing. One of the reasons I wanted to come to Reno was to get the feeling of old town gambling and I feel like we did get a taste of that.
According to Wikipedia “Reno is the most populous Nevada city outside of the Las Vegas metropolitan area, with an estimated population of 233,294 in 2013, and is the third most populous city in the state after Las Vegas and Henderson.”
We parked in the parkade at Circus Circus, for free, and headed off to check out the strip.
In 1931 Nevada legalized open gambling but even before gambling, Reno made a name for itself by offering quick divorces, however it lost that business in the 1960s after other states loosened restrictions on divorce.
In what many considered a sign of the times, downtown Reno’s showcase gambling establishment, the Silver Legacy Resort Casino filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in late May 2012.
We spent some time in the Silver Legacy Casino today and all seemed well. From what I have read the Eldorado Casino, which owned 51% of the Silver Legacy, took over full ownership of it this year.
As we walked along the strip we passed many boarded up stores and motels. According to experts (and no I have no idea who the experts are) Reno, which was particularly hard hit during the housing crisis, has struggled to reinvent itself because it has been a single-industry city.
The arrival of casinos on native land and the spread of state-sanctioned gambling across the nation have devastated Reno, whose customers came mostly from the Bay Area and other corners of California. Instead of driving a couple hundred miles and crossing the Sierra Nevada, Californians just headed for slot machines at native casinos closer to home.
Despite the economic downturn we really enjoyed our day wandering through the casinos, mainly because the Las Vegas swarms of people where not there. And where else can you get a 16 oz can of beer for $1.50 and pay $2.00 for a glass of iced tea (hubby got the better end of that deal 🙂 )!
On our way back to our RV Park near Carson City we took a drive through Washoe Lake State Park. It was a nice campground, $17.00 a night with no hookups, definitely a place we will try and return to stay in the future.
Until next time …