Jelly Donut is a local donut shop in Midtown Reno that offers tasty donuts and breakfast sandwiches at affordable prices. This shop is open 24/7 and is run by a nice family.
Their jelly donuts are the jam!
It's hard to miss this shop while making a trip to Midtown. If you're one of the people that have been wondering about Jelly Donut, wonder no more.
Jelly Donut is legit, with friendly service, fresh and tasty donuts, and hot and tasty breakfast sandwiches.
It's incredible that we have a donut shop that's open 24/7. Late night/early morning cravings? No problem!
Why is this shop so surprising to me? It's outdated. You'd think you were on a movie set taking place in the 1950s. Let's just say that this is a great "don't judge a book by its cover" example.
Outdated shop, but don't be deceived. They have yummy food! People are always here buying boxes of donuts to-go.
Every single donut I've tasted from here was really good and I love that they're not too big and have just the right amount of sweetness. They have that traditional yeast flavor everyone loves from a good donut and will keep you coming back for more.
You must try their lemon-filled jelly donut. The sweetness of the glaze with the freshness of the jelly paired with the right amount of moist dough makes for a great treat.
For an option that's not too sweet, try their Hawaiian style donuts called Malasadas: donut balls filled with jam and coated with powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar. They are bit more chewy with a bread like texture and not as sweet as their traditional donuts. Like their jelly donuts, the jelly fillings in their malasadas are super fresh tasting. Try their guava filled with powdered sugar. Malasadas are a great alternative for people watching their sugar intake and are the perfect treat for children.
Lemon filled jelly donut, glaze, plain old-fashion (from left to right). All yummy.
If you're the type that doesn't accept donuts on their own as a complete breakfast, you'll have all of your traditional breakfast sandwiches to choose from.
Their croissants are made in house and make the best breakfast sandwich when paired with a nice and fluffy egg, gooey cheese, and meat of your choice.
Croissant, egg, & cheese breakfast sandwich. Yum! They make a nice and fluffy microwaved egg. Sandwich served hot.
I tried their bacon, egg, and cheese croissant and love that they give a decent amount of bacon that's not too salty and fatty.
I also tried their tuna sandwich and loved it.
Classic tuna salad with onion, lettuce, & tomato on a bagel. Everything was fresh and yummy.
If you're looking for a great spot for donuts and breakfast sandwiches, you can depend on Jelly Donut 24/7 to help fulfill your donut, breakfast, and lunch needs (yes, you need these foods in your life).
Friendly service and great tasting food @ great prices.
Know of any other rad hole-in-the wall places in Reno? If so, please let me know on Instagram. I'll make sure to check them out and show them some love.
*They have coffee, juice, milk, smoothies, and boba available. The time I visited, they didn't have boba on hand.
*If you're looking to complete the meal with good quality coffee, head around the corner to Magpie Coffee Roasters (1-2 minute walk).
*DoughBoy's Donuts is still the best, but this is another great option around the Midtown area. I prefer Jelly Donut over Sprinkles and Donut Bistro.
Snow can come in as early as the end of October. Though winters in Reno are mild, they can still be hazardous with unexpected amounts of snow fall from time to time. Here's my simple guide with tips and information on what to expect:
Freckled Frog @ Summit Mall has the most MAGICAL Christmas Decor. You must check them out!
Reno is filled with so much holiday/seasonal action & cheer and so many neighboring towns are in the same club, including Lake Tahoe, Sparks, Carson City, Truckee, Virginia City, and more, making the holidays as grand as can be.
Whether you want to stay in town or venture out nearby, you'll find plenty of things to do both near and far.
Distances to Nearby Destinations
*Lake Tahoe - 40 minutes to 1.3 hours
*Sparks is just next door
*Carson City - 30 minutes
*Truckee - 45 minutes
*Virginia City - 27 minutes
At any time of the season you may come across carolers spreading cheer with their lovely, harmonious voices, neighbors decorating their butts off towards amazing Christmas scenes, local shops offering sumptuous holiday offerings, rad, one-of-a-kind holiday events, holiday fundraisers, craft workshops, pop-up shops, entertaining holiday snows, festive marathons, outdoor adventures like snow tubing and ice skating, and so much more.
Below you'll find a list of some activities and events (some new, some annual favorites) in and around Reno to help with planning for the holidays.
I hope you find lots of action and have the best time with your loved ones.
Please check back in as I will be updating this guide often as more information comes in.
P.S. I make short reels & posts on Instagramon hidden gems, giveaways, events, and local businesses that I don't post here on my blog. If you don't want to miss out on any action, you can follow me at lovingreno775.
Tips for the best holiday season:
*Book events/purchase tickets as soon as possible as many of them sell out early
*Arrive to events early to avoid traffic/lines + get first pick
*Always check hour to hour weather to dress appropriately. Always check wind speeds. Anything higher than 10mph can be biting, especially for littles.
*Having an extra pair of clothes, an emergency kit (road and first aid), and some food in your vehicle all season long can make for a smoother winter.
Happy Holidays Everyone.
Thanks so much for visiting.
Peace, Love, & Respect,
Cookie's with Santa - Shay Co. TBA 2022
In This Guide:
*Events with links
*Christmas on the Comstock - A little about Virginia City and its month long holiday celebration
*Where to see Christmas lights and displays
*Where to go ice Skating
*Where to go Skiing & Snowboarding
*Suggestions for winter activities - Gondola Rides, Snow Tubing, Snowshoeing
*Information on "Elf Yourself" - elf generator app activity
*Lists - Places to Shop, Clutter Free Gifts, Experiences, Ceramic Studios, Memberships, Plants, Subscriptions, Local Bookstores
Unique ornaments from Wilbur D. May gift shop
I highlight many of our local businesses below. Why support local businesses? They're our neighbors, friends, and family, and they are passionate about their businesses, creating quality products and services. They bring diversity, passion, and so much value to our community.
I've met so many amazing business owners and one thing I can say is that they're all amazing and inspirational.
Follow, comment, and spread the news about your favorite local businesses to keep them strong and alive.
Please connect with me on Instagram if you'd like to share more about your local favorite business.
This local magazine is loaded with lots of action year-round and highlights the best in Reno for families. Issues released quarterly with up to date seasonal information. Follow them on Instagramto see where you can pick up a free hard copy or subscribe on their website for access to a FREE online copy.
I'm still pinching myself at the fact that we're going to have something like Reno Public Market in town.
Wondering what this new establishment is all about? Think loads of vendors all in one huge (and beautiful) building.
The first thought that came to mind when I first saw the plans for this building on the news was - Chelsea Market - a popular marketplace attraction in New York.
If RPM is anything like Chelsea Market, you can expect it to have tons of food options, places to shop, and have a welcoming and lively atmosphere that will beckon and awaken your adventurous spirits and bring out the true foodie in you.
I stumbled across a local artist's post about having just finished painting one of the walls in the building and his art is AMAZING. Check out more of Bryce's work on Instragram.
The market is scheduled to officially open in January 2023.
"You’re invited to our Deck the Halls Holiday Pop-Up! Starting 11/17, come out every Thursday through Sunday for live music, food trucks, photo booths, fire pits, cocktails, appearances by Santa, and shopping with some of our incredible retailers. Meet us there for this special sneak peek of everything Reno Public Market will be when we fully open in January of 2023."
(Description from website)
Reno Public Market Deck The Halls Pop-Up Live Music
"I’m back! The 6th Annual Drive By Turkey Drop this November, Friday 18th to help feed the less fortunate Kids & Families in our area, neighborhood, and community. Help them enjoy Thanksgiving and the power of every day necessities.
*FROZEN TURKEYS ONLY PLEASE* All Non Perishable Food Items, canned goods, and any monetary donations will go directly to our friends at @foodbanknn
To Donate, simply come by the @wild1029 Studios at 595 East Plumb Ln, Friday morning November 18 between 7am and 12pm."
The holiday vibes are strong here, the atmosphere is so fresh and beautiful, there's always live music and entertainment for children, and there are tons of amazing local vendors that have so much to offer, including some of the best produce+eats and unique gift items in Reno.
"We've got two days of music, art and mayhem featuring over 100+ vendors, 12 bands, a skate ramp, a bounce house, possum pile clothing exchange, a kids craft area, DIY activities, food trucks, car smash, a stuffed animal gladiator pit and more!"
The Generator is a HUGE maker space in Sparks that's open to all artists, both established and new, welcoming all to exercise their creative juices.
They have all of the tools needed to help make your visions come to life and host workshops throughout the year (for both adults and children), including their popular Punk Rock Flea Market.
The Generator is an amazing organization that brings so much to our community. I hope you check them out and follow them on Instagram.
*when a guest buys a $10 VIP experience and they are a new Rail City Rewards enrollment, they receive $10 in Free Slot Play
The band is a great local band that has open for groups such as Tesla, and the lead vocalist is Joe Retta from the Band Sweet. They performed hits such as Ballroom Blitz, Fox on the Run, and Love is like Oxygen.
Did you know that we have some amazing races that have become traditions for many locals in Reno because of their fun and rewarding properties?
Dirty Wookie (Star Wars Theme), Rock Reno, and the Turkey trot, are just a few of local favorites.
I cannot describe the vibes and energy you get at these events.
So many people from all walks of life come together and race for all sorts of purposes - fundraising, health, fun, community, competition, self-improvement, to support a good cause, to be empowered, to model healthy habits, and so much more.
At the Turkey Trot, turkeys will trot around Sparks Marina, one of the biggest bodies of water you'll find around Reno, and it just so happens to be right next to the Outlets at Legends, home to Scheels.
Scheels is the ultimate sporting goods store that has more than just goods. Inside you'll find a huge Ferris Wheel ($1/person/ride), Fuzziwig's Candy Shop, home to my favorite apple pie caramel apple, roller ball, a mini arcade, Ginna's Cafe, and so much more.
After your race, treat yourself to great tasting local coffee at Lighthouse Coffee on the water front and Everbowl, located next to the gas station (yummy and nourishing acai bowls, all vegan).
Run/Walk Options: 10k, 2-mi run, 2-mi walk
Registration Fees: Now - Nov 19: $30 Nov 21 - 23: $45 (During Packet Pickup at SCHEELS Nov 24: $65 (Race Day - Cash Only)
*Register (online until capacity Nov. 23, in person morning of cash only)
"Join us on Thanksgiving Morning for a run/ walk/ wobble that kicks off your Thanksgiving Morning festivities! The race event will begin at 9am on Virginia St next to City Plaza. Participants will make their way through downtown Reno and the nearby parks before returning to the finish where they will get a finisher's medal upon completion. Reno's Wobble Before You Gobble is the best Thanksgiving family tradition for the whole family!" (Description)
-November 25: starts at 2:30pm
Holiday Tree Lighting Celebration(South Lake Tahoe 1.25 hours away from Reno)
"6:30 pm. Gather ‘round as Santa lights our monstrous 70 foot, highly lighted, cut fir tree! The kick off ceremony will include: caroling, music and fun for all! Tree lightings are daily at 5:30pm with Santa after November 25th. Coffee cart will be provided.
This year we will be celebrating the 20 year anniversary of the Heavenly Village.
Congressman Tom McClintock’s office has it on the schedule at this time. Ohh, and of course Santa will be attending. Also in attendance Assemblyman Kevin Kiley, El Dorado county Sheriff Jeff Leikaff, City of South Lake Tahoe Fire Chief Jim Drennan.
The star will be placed on top of the tree by the ladder truck by a firefighter to light the tree.
"Not wild about hitting the malls for the annual holiday shopping frenzy after Thanksgiving? Why not spend the weekend at Animal Ark!
Have family in town? You can enjoy our animals when they are active in late fall’s cooler temperatures. With warm drinks and festive tidings, this event is the perfect family gathering to make memories that will last a lifetime!"
A friendly elf on the Candy Cane Express in Virginia City
The Candy Cane Express is a magical 45 minute out-and-back ride to Gold Hill and includes:
-happy and kind North Pole elves
-Elf emcee on the train singing carols and telling Christmas jokes
-candy canes at the end of the ride
-hot cocoa or apple cider
-goodie bag with cookies, kisses, pen and postcard for santa (mailbox in front of gift shop)
-The Night Before Christmas read aloud
-Beautiful views of Virginia City
-the perfect setting and atmosphere for the holidays
-Christmas decorated train
-You will find Santa's workshop at Gold Hill (first half of ride) where the train stops and you can witness elves working and hear a special message from Santa (he calls out some kids names that are on the train)
-wild mustangs (often seen)
Enjoying views of wild mustangs on the Candy Cane Express Train
Wild Mustangs are always a treat in Virginia City, NV.
V&T puts so much thought and effort into every detail of this event. Throughout the years, it has become a beloved tradition for many families.
Visit Virginia City
Virginia City is a short and scenic 30 minute trip up the mountains from South Reno and offers unique boutique shopping, tourist attractions, restaurants, saloons, accommodations, and tours on top of its special themed train rides throughout the year.
Its signature "wild west" look and feel, along with its festive and fun nature, attracts so many visitors yearly. It's one of my favorite places to visit.
Virginia City does the holidays justice. Check out their activities and events throughout the month and have yourself a merry and jam-packed holiday season to your heart's content. Visit their Forever Christmas Store, a store that represents its true holiday spirit.
This Santa is a hit among many moms that will not go to any other Santa. They say that he's pretty fun. This store is comparable to Scheel's, but a bit smaller. Cabela's has an amazing atmosphere with lots to see and is worth a trip out.
If you're looking for a fun stop right after, Boomtown is right next door with an arcade and some small rides, including a fun carousel (slow but beautiful). Mel's Diner is next door and has cool retro vibes.
Crystal Peak Park is also in the same area for those looking for a nice walk. Read more about this park on my post.
*vendors for holiday shopping, crafts for kids, photo opportunities
*The Village @ Rancharra is our newest shopping center that's an amazing place to hang out at. There's a communal area with fire pits, corn hole, chess, and the village is home to some of the best eats in town: Perenn Bakery, Rolled Mountain Creamery, and Centro, to name a few.
Picture from Wandering Wyld Website
-November 30 - December 18: Th,Fr,Sa 7:30pm, Su 2:00pm
"Bring the whole family for an evening of live entertainment, carriage rides, caroling, local dancers, hot cider, cobbler, and, of course, a visit with Santa. Live entertainment throughout the day spreads holiday cheer and will end with a fireworks show illuminating the night sky." (Description from website)
Gardnerville is a charming town that's a short and scenic one hour drive from Reno past Carson City and is home to one of my favorite annual events - Coffin Races - and one of my favorite places to get sweet treats - The Chocolate Shoppe.
If you're an adventurer at heart and want to discover a new community nearby, Gardnerville is definitely one I highly recommend, with its year-round events, beautiful scenery, and strong sense of community.
*Tips: arrive early for street parking. Otherwise, the Victorian Square Parking Garage next to the theater always has space and is walking distance to the event. This event will likely have freezing weather so dressing up in winter gear is highly suggested. For those looking to save money, you can bring a thermos with hot drinks and some food.
THURSDAY, DEC. 1 39 North Pole, 4:00 to 9:00 p.m.: Light Displays, entertainment, and outdoor bazaar
FRIDAY, DEC. 2 Tree Lighting Ceremony, 6:30 to 7:00 p.m. Complimentary hot chocolate from Living Stones Church Music by Nevada Gay Men's Chorus 39 North Pole, 4:00 to 9:00 p.m.
SATURDAY, DEC. 3 Parade Day Activities: 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Santa Photos at 39 North, presented by Boys and Girls Club of Truckee Meadows, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. Sparks Hometowne Christmas Parade, 1:00 to 2:30 p.m. 39 North Pole, 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
39 North Pole Village is a MUST see during December, with so much fun to be had, lots of comforting and delicious eats from rad, local businesses, live entertainment, and many craft vendors (in a heated tent) to shop from for all of your holiday needs.
This event is loaded with lots of Christmas Displays, including an annual favorite - A Christmas Story, that includes the notorious leg lamp from the movie.
If you catch the event at the right time, you'll have a chance to take photos with Mr. and Mrs. Clause against a cool Christmas backdrop. Free holiday family photos? Yes, please, and thank you!
This festival is an amazing way to celebrate the holidays, with a tree lighting ceremony at the capitol building, a cheerful chorus of adorable kids + Mr. & Mrs. Santa, of course, festive lighting, carriage rides full of smiling faces, hot cocoa & cider, and a huge crowd of visitors that contribute to an amazing holiday scene and atmosphere.
If you're looking for treats and food for the family, Scoups is the place to go across the street from the event. Tasty ice cream, sandwiches, soups, hot drinks, kid's plates, and excellent service. It's located in a cute shopping center that has plenty of room for children to play.
*Check hour to hour weather to dress appropriately as this event takes place later in the day where temperatures can be freezing.
*Arrive early to grab a spot in front of the capitol building in front of the steps to watch Carson's adorable 5th graders Carol and light up the event
"Join us for an evening of seasonal cocktails paired with gourmet bites from local restaurants at this 6th annual friendly competition event to benefit the Nevada Diabetes Association. Who will take home Best Sweet Bite, Best Savory Bite, Best Craft Cocktail and more?"
"Take the elevator home! Special room rates are available at $69*. Call (800) 723-6500 and mention offer code: WONDER*Subject to promotional availability and restrictions."
"Gather the family for a true holiday tradition. The Reno Phil, Reno Phil Chorus and conductor Jason Altieri invite you to the Spirit of the Season, a classic holiday celebration full of orchestral arrangements, jazzy numbers, traditional holiday tunes and carols. Choose from four showtimes wrapped in fantasy and fun for the whole family!" (description from website)
Truckee is an amazing nearby city to visit any time of the year. The Truckee Theater comes out with a new play every year for the holidays.
"When The Royal Shakespeare Company doesn't show up to perform their stirring rendition of A Christmas Carol, it's up to this intrepid band of hapless actors and technicians to pull together their own production in less than seven hours! Have you ever experienced backstage mayhem?" (Description from website)
Directed by Loren McCormac and Christopher Liedholm
Tickets on sale now.
Purchase by November 14th for the Early Bird discount. Adults $15 Students $10 After November 15 Adults $20 Students $15
"Celebrate the holiday season with an evening of fine dining and live entertainment. It all begins with a magnificent plated dinner prepared by our awardwinning culinary team. After that, listen to the Platters. Join us for this special holiday celebration!" (Description from Atlantis website)
-December 3, 5pm-8pm
Light up the Night 2022 hosted by Horizon Church (Sparks)
*Pictures with Santa, Mini pony petting zoo, food trucks, character greetings with princesses, elf, and more, fire pits and smores, free hot cocoa bar and cookies, Christmas Music & Carols, Bounce house obstacle course, rock climbing wall, carnival games, prizes.
"Join us for a winter workshop and learn how to make 20” 3D paper bag snowflakes. These simple to create snowflakes are a fun activity and add a big impact to your holiday decor. All supplies are provided and festive refreshments will be served."
-December 3, 10, & 17
Noel Nights @ Northstar Ice Skating Rink (about 1 hr. from Reno past Truckee)
*Live music, photos with Santa, letters to Santa station, face paint, & balloon animals
Northstar is a beautiful ski resort that has a fun plaza with a skating rink in the center that's lined with shops and restaurants.
In the summer, they set up mini golf courses throughout their resort and they also have their own theater.
They finally brought back their tubing experience found right in the village. Their course is short and sweet with two lanes. I remember one year when my littles went up and down the slopes all day non-stop and had the time of their lives. They have sleds that you can rent. Fire pits nearby for caretakers looking to watch from a warmer spot.
*Visitors are free to take pictures with Santa and his elves
Scheels is a fun store to visit year-round, especially during the holidays.
Ride their indoor ferris wheel for only $1/person. Have some fun at their shooting gallery, play some roller ball (don't forget to bring dollar bills), mini arcade, check out their new holiday decor section, have a bite at Gina's Cafe, and munch on one of my favorite caramel apples at Fuzziwig's.
If you're looking for an outdoor activity nearby, Scheel's is connected to Sparks Marina, where you'll find a nice walking loop with beautiful scenery. Stop by one of my favorite local coffee shops, Lighthouse Coffee, found right on the waterfront next to the apartments buildings. There's also a new and fun all abilities playground that just opened up at the park.
Dine, chat, & take pictures with Mr. & Mrs. Claus at one of my favorite interactive restaurants, Fire & Ice, located in a fun and cozy shopping center. Also included: build a polar bear kit with stuffing and adventure activity book with crayons.
Lunch Buffet at Fire & Ice
If you haven't been to Fire & Ice Restaurant at Heavenly Village, they have a fun & interactive lunch buffet where the customer picks all of the ingredients and brings their concoction(s) to the grill for a chef to cook up.
If you're lucky, you'll run into the cook that puts on a show with plates being tossed into the air and bowls being flung into bins.
If you have not already been to Heavenly Village, it's one of the most popular ski resorts in Lake Tahoe. It's loaded with so many shops, entertainment, and restaurants and is popular to visit year-round.
Ride their scenic gondola ride to the top where you can dine at their lodge or grab some skates and get into the holiday spirit at their rink located in the center of the village.
I stayed at the hotel on their property, Grand Residence, and it was a treat to be able to be immersed in the middle of so much.
There were so many dining options and so much to see.
When it came time for entertainment, the theater, gondola ride, live music, and short walk to the beach made for the perfect activities.
Although the village can be a bit more on the pricey end overall, me and my family still love visiting because of the cozy atmosphere, cool shops, priceless views, and many events offered here throughout the year.
*Tickets: $5/person, 5 & under free, $1 off if you bring a canned item for food drive
"The Magic of Santa Craft Faire has been running for 42 consecutive years and just keeps getting better year after year. Fine Arts and Crafts from over 80 crafters. Support your local small family owned businesses and find beautiful hand made items from tole painted snowmen and beautiful doll clothes to fine wood work and handcrafts for yourself and the ones you love".
Come on out to support our non profit teaching farm that strives in educating our children and community through hands-on workshops and experiences. Empowering people to grow their own food and live healthy lifestyles.
A dazzling Christmas spectacular complete with glittering costumes, a stunning cast, and the highest kicking Chorus Girls this side of the North Pole. Start your holiday tradition in style as Santa and his merry helpers take you on a nostalgic Christmas journey, with all your favorite Christmas songs. Perfect for the entire family." (Description from website)
*Visit the Chocolate Nugget Factory (closes 6:30pm everyday) right next to Washoe Lake and pick up some goodies before your holiday drive through.
*If you're looking for something to do nearby before the event starts, visit Bower's Mansion (no dogs allowed) for a scenic stroll or Davis Creek Regional Park for a short and scenic nature trail hike (family friendly)
*Listen to your favorite holiday songs as you drive along and enjoy a festive display of lights at the Washoe Lake Campground.
*bring your own holiday treats & drinks to complete the experience.
"Estelle J. Kelsey Foundation Hands ON! Second Saturdays offers monthly free admission, hands-on art activities, storytelling, a docent-guided tour, live performances, and community collaborations. “Art Investigators” provides children the opportunity to engage with Museum staff and take a closer look at current work on view. New exhibitions, community collaborations, guest performances, and monthly themes rotate in this engaging series of monthly programs." (Description from website)
10 am – 6 pm | Free Admission for all Visitors 10 am – 4 pm | Hands-on Art Projects 10:30 am & 1 pm | Art Expeditions with Bonnie 11 am | Public Tour (adult focus) 11 am & 12:30 pm | Storytelling with Whitney 11:30 am & 1 pm | In-Tune Tales: The Grinch 12:30 pm, 1:30 pm & 2:30 pm | Chris Sexton Trio 2 pm | Storytelling with Whitney
"TheatreWorks of Northern Nevada is excited to present the Musical Parody, Nightmare Before X-Mas </3, inspired by Tim Burton’s iconic film, ‘The Nightmare Before Christmas’. Writer and Director Jessica Grimaldo takes the classic story and transforms it into a unique realm of possibilities where you can see all your favorite characters with a modern twist. Come witness Jack the Emo King, and his beloved Hally, we mean, Sally… embark on an adventure unlike any other you’ve ever... "scene”." (Description from Website)
"Join Santa and his special guests for an INTIMATE MEET & GREET, including crafts, cookies and hot cocoa. Pictures will be captured for this Holiday memory as you witness first hand the magic of the season." (Description from website)
Have you seen this gorgeous club yet? If not, just go! Before checking it out, you'll want to first drop by The Village for some amazing shopping and good eats.
"The much anticipated Holland Project Holiday Market is back and is now called High Desert Art+ Craft (fka Rogue)! 50+ vendors, plus food trucks and snacks, will be hawking their wares and handmade goods over the weekend of December 7-8th.
High Desert Art+Craft celebrates the work of independent artists, crafters, and makers from throughout the region and is your one-stop-shop for the highest quality, one-of-a-kind, and most radical gifts each holiday season." (Description from website)
"Bring the kids down to meet Santa, then make some holiday treasures at the family-friendly craft stations. Snap a holiday photo against one of our festive backdrops, and find those last few gifts at the pop-up market. We'll also be hosting a coat drive for Eddy House, a non-profit that helps homeless and under-privileged youth develop the skills they need to become independent." (Description from website)
Photo by yours truly
The Village at Rancharrah is our most beautiful shopping center in Reno, with farmhouse style buildings and charming boutique stores.
The Village is home to one of the best bakeries in town, Perenn (everything I've tried here is sooo good and I've tried almost everything) and one of my favorite ice cream joints, Rolled Mountain Creamery.
Bring the family along, and play Harry Potter style chess, sit in a silly chair, play bocce ball, all while enjoying beautiful scenery while sitting next to a fireplace.
*Tickets $25 (general), $20(Senior), $10(Student with ID)
"Do we have a Show of Shows for you! Spend it with us as we serve up that special holiday feeling with classics like The Little Drummer Boy, Silent Night and White Christmas, as well as adding family-friendly spice with The Christmas Can-Can, Holiday Tango, and Sparklejollytwinklejingley. It is The Most Wonderful Time of the Year! With guest music director Dominique Christian Dale Gonzales, chorusography and staging by Mig O’Hara, and special choreography by Barbara Land and Missy Hill, what better way to kick off your holiday celebrations than spending a Holly Jolly evening with us." (Description from website)
I've been following Alayna for a while now and she never ceases to amaze me with her amazing cookie creations and the person she is. If you've been meaning to learn how to decorate cookies, this will be an amazing opportunity to check it off your bucket list.
Alayna can make magical cookies for any occasion, so make sure to save her info when you're looking for something special for life's celebrations.
"learn the basics of decorating cookies with royal icing and take home your delicious creations afterwards. Cocktails will be provided by Seven Troughs Speakeasy and light food will be provided by Freshies Reno." (Description from website)
Workshop Ticket includes:
-6 full size cookies
-All supplies for decorating (icing, sprinkles, tools for decorating, etc. provided)
"Our annual Santa Ski Day festivities will return Saturday, December 17th. Santas… or All those fully done up in Holiday Wear can get a $79 Lift Ticket! (Note – just a Santa hat does not qualify) 10:30 – 12:30 NOG Bar at the Totem (Near the top of the Relay) 10:30 am – MASS SANTA SKI DOWN – KC Bowl (10:15 meet Lakeview Load) 1:30 pm Ugly Sweater Contest – TIMBERS"
If you're looking for a one-of-a-kind holiday experience, this just may be what you're looking for. Noble Pie has some delicious eats, including some of the best wings in town and some hearty and satisfying pies. Make sure to not skip out on their salad because it's one of the most tastiest and most refreshing in town. Enjoy good eats and company around their Nevada shaped fire pit.
"Eat, Drink, and Be Merry as Mr. & Mrs. Claus teach your little elves how to make their own pizzas with their favorite toppings. Tickets include (1) Personal Pizza + Beverage for (1) Child + (1) Adult. Additional tickets may be purchased at a discount for a 2nd Parent or Adult Chaperone. Complimentary Milk & Cookies will be included to enjoy with Santa and Mrs. Claus.
We have different tiered pricing and levels of privacy available for those wanting to work in family/friends groups or looking to mingle with others!
$2 Off All Drafts
$10 Crystal Basin Bubbles or Mimosas
$10 About Town Debb Red Blend
$10 "The Apple Of My Pie" - Salted Caramel, Apple Pie Sangria
Full Menu available for lunches, for our Parent Chaperones to enjoy during the event or for food to take home to the rest of the family!"
This is a circus-style, Christmas-themed show, with Christmas costumes and a story to tie everything together.
Me and my family saw the original version of the show and had lots of fun.
There were acrobats, couples dancing and swinging from the ceiling, scooters, clowns, and so much more.
Our 3, 5, and 7 year old had no problem sitting through the show because it was so entertaining.
Intermission midway and bar open for adult drinks. Eat at one of the many restaurants available on the same level or go down one level to the non-smoking section for more food options (Johnny Rocket's, Port of Subs, Round Table) and entertainment (bowling, theater, VR, escape rooms).
Picture from GSR website
-December 18: 5pm-9pm nightly
Elf Night at The Elf House (in Cold Springs, 30 minutes from Reno)
*Shay Co has a new brick and mortar shop @ The Basement, our old post office building that's home to so many other local businesses. Here you'll find coffee, sandwiches/acai bowls, a barber, crystal, bath & body shop, a speakeasy bar, and plenty of informational plaques and art on the walls. This is one of my favorite places to hang around.
Incline Village is mainly visited for one of the most popular and picturesque beaches in all Lake Tahoe, Sand Harbor, but what a lot of people don't know is that it has a lot going on for itself all throughout the year, including their Northern Lights Festival.
The alpine Holiday Atmosphere in Lake Tahoe is a vibe. You must experience an event there during the holidays. You'll thank me later.
Mountain Music Parlor has an amazing concert hall that has great vibes and beautiful acoustics.
The owner, Rene and her husband put their hearts and souls into making this hall special for all.
If you love music, Mountain Music Parlor is the place to be. Surround yourself with amazing like-minded local musicians and be part of an amazing community.
Christmas Lights and Displays
Reno goes all out with Christmas decorations. Here's a comprehensive listof where to see the best in town.
Don't forget to dress warm. Sometimes you may find yourself wanting to get out of your vehicle to get closer to the holiday action) bring your favorite warm drinks and snacks for the full experience.
Tune into a Christmas radio station for further enjoyment.
My Favorite house in Hidden Valley 7115 Pebble Beach Drive.
*I love Hidden Valley's Parade of Lights. This neighborhood throws an annual competition, which results in some of the best decorated houses in town. Check out their archive to see lists of winners from past competitions.
1st place 7155 Pebble Beach Dr (They did not participate this year, 2022)
2nd place 113 Mia Vista Ct.
3rd place 3735 Jagged Rock Road
4th place 2960 Man of War Drive
5th place 5665 W. Hidden Valley Dr.
6th place 6012 E. Hidden Valley Dr.
7th place 5690 2308 Tamarisk Dr.
8th place 6012 Clear Creek Dr.
9th place 3425 Shawnee Cir.
10th place 5300 East Hidden Valley Dr.
*The Lights of Tanea is especially fun since it's one of the only houses in Reno that has its lights synchronized to music on the radio. It's been on break for the past few years and has recently come back. Though on a smaller scale, it's still very entertaining and magical for many (especially kids).
Mt. Rose Ski Buds is an amazing teaching program for children at Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe (45 minutes away from S. Reno)
Heavenly South Lake Tahoe
More Winter Activities
*Scenic Gondola Ride @ Heavenly Village in South Lake Tahoe - Though this 2.4 mile ride can be a bit pricey, I encourage everyone to ride it at least one time. Purchase a scenic ride ticket to incredible views of Lake Tahoe, dangling in the air, breathless with delight and adrenaline pumping through your body. Note: the ride is not for those with fear of heights as you'll go up really high.
*Scenic Aerial Tram Ride @ Palisades in Olympic Valley (formerly Squaw) - This is an amazing ride that I've been on multiple times. Not only does it supply stunning views, it also offers comfort in a bigger tram with clearer windows and leads up to an Olympic Museum attraction and food options.
*If you're missing some fall action, BOA Vista Orchard in Apple Hill (2 hrs. from Reno) is open year-round and offers apple good and pantry items yearly. Don't forget a cooler to bring back frozen pies and fresh pressed apple cider. I've started a guide on Apple Hill. If someone is looking to plan a trip for next fall and would like more insight and details, you can visit my guide on Apple Hill here.
One of my favorite places to get unique gifts from around the world. Instruments, music, bags, clothes, books, figurines, and other rad items for sale. You can access the gift shop without purchasing admission to their museum.
The Wilbur D. May Museum has so many amazing artifacts to look at from around the world and there are usually traveling exhibits throughout the year that are always fun and educational.
*Last year, they had a fun "12 days of Christmas" discounts event where they gave out different discounts each day for 12 days straight for certain items.
I had ten photos printed out for an exhibit and was impressed with how beautiful my prints were.
If you're looking to print some photos out for some DIY gifts, this is definitely the place to get them. They have top notch quality inks that will last for a long time.
The owner, David & his son helped squeeze in my prints the same day I asked for them despite them being busy, just like all of the other local photo labs that couldn't accommodate me.
If you're a photographer, you'll probably recognize the red stripe on Canon lens (or better known as the "L Series"), which implies a higher quality of glass. David has the equivalent, but in printer form. Yes, he has a red stripe on his printer. Mind-blowing.
They have friendly service and the best quality prints. They restore photos and do large format prints. They don't crop photos like commercial print shops do like Walmart and Walgreens.
I know parking in Midtown can be tough in general, but I always make it out to this shop for prints anyway because they're more than worth it.
Our planetarium has a cool space exhibit and an awesome store that has so many space- themed items for sale (toys, gadgets, clothing, stuffed animals, astronaut food), including lots of stocking-worthy stuffers.
Watch educational documentaries in their dome on select days.
We are so lucky to have this museum in our town as it is one of the best. It's filled with so much history, cool cars, and so much charm. I don't consider myself a car person, but I'm absolutely in love with it.
This museum has a sweet gift shop with out-of-print books, vintage toy cars, kid's toys, clothing for adults, dishes, and so much more.
Why I love the museum in a nutshell:
*amazing cars, including ones featured in movies
*rad gift shop
*you can play dress-up and take pictures in a model T
*There are a few charming short documentaries that play all throughout the day in their theater
*the volunteers that work there daily are kind
*It hosts of of the best Halloween trick or treating events yearly
Enjoy an awesome meal and cup of local coffee on the riverfront at The Shore after your visit
*Nevada Museum of Art
-Hours: Tuesday – Sunday: 10 am – 6 pm, Thursday: 10 am – 8 pm -Facebook page for the latest updates -Shop online -To contact the shop directly @ (775) 398-7207 -Dining in the museum
This multi-level museum (with access to the roof) is beautiful and their exhibits are amazing, with some that change from time to time.
I remember buying my kid's first watch kit at their gift shop. It included a cute watch and an instructional booklet nicely packaged in a box. This is only one of many items you will find here.
Other handmade items include: jewelry, clothing, bags, puzzles, books, stationery, and more one-of-a-kind items.
Buy Nevada First @ The Reno Town Mall
-A shop 20,000 square feet supporting over 250+ local merchants.
This nice owner was so kind to teach my kids about air plants. She hunts down unique pieces to grow them in. Air plants are low maintenance and look beautiful. I'm so glad that the one we got from her last year is alive and thriving.
I remember the days when Buy First Nevada was in a much smaller location. It's grown so much and is filled with so many treasures. I can honestly spend a whole day here looking at all of the items (both edible and non-edible) produced by many of our talented locals. If you're lucky, you can even run into some of them and ask them about their story.
They just opened a locally owned grocery store next door, Sierra Foods that's currently under construction for remodeling and will open next year in the summer of 2023.
"Give the gift of the Village this year! Our Passports are a super fun gift idea and stocking stuffer for the local Reno-Tahoe lover. These special booklets will only be sold during the holiday season and will contain a collection of promotions from all of our retailers that you'll never find anywhere else. As an added bonus, profits from booklet sales will be donated to local charities. Purchase yours now!
On sale thru 12/18 and available for pick up at any Village holiday event!
Learning Toys Express has a wide selection of fun and educational toys and is dedicated to serving the community, helping customers find the perfect gift for any occasion. Gift wrapping is included for those short on time and online ordering is available.
-They have plenty of hands-on toys and activities that stimulate growth and foster creativity.
-Toy Shop in the same shopping center as walmart in Reno
-They always have a themed section for the holidays
-customization - names and art for anything in their store
This toy shop is run by an incredibly helpful owner, who is also eager to help customers find the right gift for any occasion.
-Toys geared toward fostering creativity and learning.
-gift wrapping available upon request with purchase
-shop located next to Yogurt Beach, and Eclipse Pizza.
There's so much Reno has to offer and tangible gifts aren't the only option. For those looking for more experience type gifts, I came across this rad list of alternatives. Read down further to find lists of local shops where you can get some of these types of gifts.
If you ask around on Nextdoor and Facebook Groups, I'm sure you can find someone with specific recommendations on where to find anything from the above list locally.
-Natalie's chocolates are works of art and the best thing is that they're also delicious.
-advent calendar filled with gourmet bon bons
-The only place that does traditional high tea service with everything made from scratch. Must make reservations ahead of time as they book out fast.
Chocolate Chocolate Chocolate - Crispy Chocolate Cookie Base, Chocolate Almond Sacher Cake, 66% Ecuador Origin Dark Chocolate, Cremeux Milk Chocolate Mousse, Dark Chocolate Glaze. This is my most favorite dessert in all of Reno that I crave and dream about constantly. This is every chocolate lover's dream come true. The crispy chocolate cookie base is a game changer.
Strawberry Pistacio - Pistachio Financier, Strawberry Gelee, Mascarpone Vanilla Mousse, Red White Chocolate Glaze. This is one of my favorites. Delicate with so many layers of flavors and textures and supreme pistachio flavor.
Try any of Natalie's Bon Bons. They're all really yummy!
-Guitar, fiddle, banjo, mandolin, accordion, harmonica, bluegrass harmony, celtic flute & bodhran, folk harp, voice, folk dance, ukulele, songwriting, mountain dulcimer, hammered dulcimer, & more.
I met the owner, Renee, of Mountain Music Parlor, who I learned poured her heart and soul into the creation of a place that would later become a pillar of the community used for gathering, learning, and sharing in the joy of everything to do with music.
I was so moved by the story of how the whole community came together many years ago to throw numerous fundraisers to raise money to fuel Rene's dream of giving the gift of music to the community.
She would use funds to build suitable rooms for music, a stage for performers to express their creativity, hire staff, and help make the place feel welcoming.
Up until the pandemic, Mountain Music Parlor was doing great. Sadly, it lost 90% of its students and 50% of its teachers. As Rene told me this, I could see and hear the pain being expressed.
I am determined to help Rene and will make every effort to help keep this precious gem open. If you're interested in joining me on this mission, please read on to find out how you can help.
How to Support & Help Keep our Amazing Local Music Shop Open:
*Purchase a lesson for yourself or as a gift for someone else
*Purchase an item from the store (instruments, gadgets, song books, and other fun things)
*Spread the word about the shop
*If you're a passionate music teacher, consider working for this shop. They're currently looking for teachers
*Organize a jam session to have in their amazing back room (pay a minimal fee)
*Pass by to say hi. A friendly face is always refreshing.
*If you're a creative person that loves planning events, you can brainstorm some ideas of how to get the business back on its feet.
*Talk to like-minded parents and gather a group of adults or kids for lessons
Mountain Parlor Music has the best quality instruments
Private Music Lessons with an Amazing Local Musician
Bijou Bell is an incredible and multi-talented musician in Reno, offering drumset, vibraphone, percussion, and songwriting lessons.
She's so passionate at what she does and has a one-of-a-kind voice that will take you to another world.
Anyone that hires her or witnesses her talent firsthand would be so lucky.
Check out her Instagrampage to hear and see all of the magic she shares with the world.
They had a bonus puzzle to solve in the lobby upon completion of all rooms that came full circle into a cohesive story, tying each room into an unsolved mystery. Solve the riddle and figure out the combination to the locker that holds a mystery item.
The rooms are so well done and have the best details and the best combinations of types of puzzles.
I've been to all of these studios and they're all great. My go-to is All Fired Up since they offer a wide variety of crafts in addition to ceramic painting, including pottery painting, candle making, mosaics/sign making, succulent gardens, slime station, and bath bar. The space is so vibrant and fun, the service is always friendly, and you can't beat its location at the outlets, with a theater across the way, food, and plenty of other attractions nearby.