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Check out these Reno and Sparks events

Reno Sparks Events

Updated on January 20, 2023


If you haven't been to the Reno/Sparks region lately, you might be surprised to find out how much has changed in a very small amount of time. The Reno area has always been known as a destination that combines outdoor play with an energetic nightlife. If you could muster the energy to be awake 24/7, we guarantee you there would be no shortage of things to do in Reno NV, no matter what time of the day it is.

A lot of people, many of whom even live in the area, think of Reno as a skiers weekend hangout, or that place with the summer classic car show. And while it certainly is all of those things, there is so much to do throughout the year, a lot of locals don't even have time to do it all.

Of course, with all the activities one can enjoy coming to a lot of annual events and festivals (like the aforementioned classic car show), and again, a lot of locals simply aren't aware of these activities beyond those which get the most publicity.

Here is a list of events that takes place on a yearly basis throughout the Reno, Sparks, Carson City and Lake Tahoe area. Take note that during the Spring and Fall months, hotel prices drop significantly, offering an excellent opportunity to enjoy the events during these months at a lower cost than would be available during peak travel season.

Spring Reno Sparks Events:


Baseball season starts up with Reno's very own Arizona Diamondback affiliated minor league team: the Reno Aces. Now moving into its second decade at Greater Nevada Field, the Aces continue to please the spring and summer crowds looking for a more intimate ballpark experience, but with all the modern amenities one can find in the major league.

The third weekend sees the annual Reno Jazz Festival and competition takes place at and around the University of Nevada. Middle School and High School bands from all over the Western United States converge on Reno to compete for prestigious awards and bragging rights while at night, professional jazz ensembles entertain audiences with all manner and style of the genre. If you haven't heard of the festival before, this competition is an excellent opportunity to see and hear some of the greatest professional players as well as future greats. Reno Jazz is considered one of the premiere festivals of jazz music in the U.S.


The Reno River Festival takes place when the winter snowmelt runoff is generally at its peak, and the whitewater park rapids are roaring. What was once a quiet, low key kayaking event is now a major competition and gathering for whitewater enthusiasts who get to compete in a rare urban setting (well, unusual for kayaking that is).

Reno Street Food Festival. This one's simple. Every Friday in Idlewild Park, food trucks gather to show off their cuisine in what has become one of Reno's most popular weekly happenings. If you've never been to a food truck festival, then you need to know that food trucks these days go well beyond just a few particular items. One can find delicious, reasonably-priced representations of just about every cuisine culture on the planet, and again, it happens every Friday evening throughout the summer in Idlewild Park.

Summer Reno Sparks Events:


Though Technically still Spring, the Street Vibrations festival is the first weekend after Memorial Day and considered a summer event. This is the biker's answer to Hot August Nights, and hundreds of thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts - you know, the kind of motorcycles that register on the Richter Scale when they ride by - flood the Reno area with all manner of street bikes. If you love the big rides, you'll want to come to check out some of the most beautiful two-wheeled machines ever built, from classic bikes to modern day rumblers, this festival has truly turned into a family event to kick off the summer.


Artown is a month-long festival of the arts that takes place over the entire month of July. Music, painting, sculpting, photography and just about everything else that can be considered art is celebrated with concerts, galas, gallery showings, wine tasting events and so much more. Artown takes place in and around Wingfield Park in downtown Reno. Search online for specific activities for the entire family - including classic movies in the park - and make sure you include the keyword 'Artown.'

The Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival. Trust us when we say you don't have to be a fan of Shakespeare to enjoy this event. Plays are staged at an outdoor amphitheater at Sand Harbor, just south of Incline Village. You have not experienced Shakespeare until you've watched the sunset and the stars come out while enjoying an al fresco dinner and one of the bard's classic plays. This event spans July and August.

Fall Reno Sparks Events:


Again, while Autumn technically begins on the 21st of September, most of us think of Labor Day Weekend as the official beginning of the Fall season. For Reno, that means the Best in the West Rib Cookoff at the Nugget in Sparks. This massive festival of all things barbecue (but mostly ribs) is basically three days of the best rib joints in the world, showing off their skills with the grill, every Labor Day Weekend.

The first weekend after Labor Day is the Great Reno Balloon Races. Hundreds of Hot Air Balloons rise into the air each morning. An amazing experience for the entire family, make sure you catch Dawn Patrol, where five balloons hover just above Rancho San Rafael Park and are lit up from the inside.

The Third Weekend in Reno hosts the National Championship Air Races up at the former Stead Air Base north of town. This is the fastest competition on earth, with modern and vintage planes racing at up to five hundred miles per hour.

Winter Reno Sparks Events:


If skiing or snowboarding isn't your thing, check out Winterfest in Reno and Sparks throughout December. The centerpiece of this event is the ice rink set up at Greater Nevada Field.

If you want to celebrate Christmas from times gone by, check out the Christmas on the Comstock festival in Virginia City.


And finally, January in Reno celebrates the arrival of the Chinese New Year in the Desert with parades and cultural events celebrating the longest continuously running calendar on the planet.

CASH 1 hopes these event reminders will help you get out and enjoy the many festivals that happen in the Reno Area every year.

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Noel Ballon

Noel Ballon is a skilled personal finance writer passionate about helping people to succeed financially.

As a guest writer for CASH 1, Noel has shared his knowledge on a variety of financial issues, including budgeting, saving, investing, and retirement planning

Noel has a background in economics and finance with over five years of experience writing in the financial sector.

He works to simplify complicated financial ideas so that people from every area of society may understand them.

When Noel isn't writing, he likes keeping current on the latest financial sector changes and looking for fresh approaches to assisting people in choosing wise financial decisions.