Arts and Culture

Picture Collage of Mid-Century Motels
Courtesy UNR Special Collections, Jerry Stefani, and Mike Roberts

Reno is home to a collection of quirky, mid-century motels. Some have fallen into disrepair, some serve as low-income housing and some are being torn down for new developments. But if you were to drive through Reno during the middle of the 20th century, you would have seen a booming motel landscape, when motels were icons of the vibrant tourism industry.

Four people are painting different parts of a wall.
Lucia Starbuck

Many mural-painting events let the public gaze upon artists decorating a wall. However, this July during Artown, a community workshop in Spanish Springs allowed anyone to stop by and pick up a paintbrush to add color and life to a dull white wall. KUNR’s Lucia Starbuck has more.

Rodeos: Cultural Heritage Or Animal Abuse?

Jul 3, 2019
A woman in a white cowboy hat stands next to a white and brown horse.
Holly Hutchings

The Reno Rodeo wrapped up its centennial anniversary last weekend. Though the cultural history of the event is alive and 100 years strong, animal rights groups question if this sport is abusive to animals and if it's still acceptable in today’s society. Holly Hutchings has this report.

Holly Hutchings

Kathleen Brannon is a beadwork artist living in Spanish Springs who set up shop at the Reno Rodeo's marketplace last week, which was home to about 100 vendors and artists. She talked with KUNR's Holly Hutchings about her craft and her business.

'Rodeo Wish' Gives Boost To Sick Kids

Jul 3, 2019
Holly Hutchings

The Reno Rodeo Foundation, the charitable arm of the local rodeo, has been busy granting wishes for sick kids and their families. Holly Hutchings witnessed a few of the surprises and has this report.

Reno Rodeo 100: Living Near The Horses

Jun 28, 2019
Man smiles in front of camera. He is wearing a cowboy hat.
Jessi LeMay

The Reno Rodeo 100 is a multimedia storytelling series wherein people connected to the event have shared intimate, up close tales from the rodeo during open mic events and as part of more in-depth interviews with rodeo documentarians. In this excerpt, Bill Richards describes what it was like living in a tack room. He also reflects on how he was mesmerized by the first Reno Rodeo that he attended in 1947.

Reno Rodeo 100: Caring For A Hurt Calf

Jun 27, 2019
A man in a plaid shirt hold a mic as he tells the story of hurt calf during rodeo season.
Jessi LeMay

The Reno Rodeo 100 is a multimedia storytelling series wherein people connected to the event have shared intimate, up-close tales from the rodeo during open mic events and as part of more in-depth interviews with rodeo documentarians. In this excerpt, one former rodeo director, Dr. Joseph Eberle, recalls a time when a hurt calf got some very special medical treatment.

Reno Rodeo 100: Rain In The Arena

Jun 26, 2019
A black and white image of one of the first years of the Reno Rodeo.
Jessi LeMay

The Reno Rodeo 100 is a multimedia storytelling series commemorating the event’s 100th anniversary. This excerpt brings us attendees Harrie and Karl Baker, who describe how rodeo rides on, even when storms roll in. In this story, an undeterred barrel racer had to overcome not just heavy rains, but a surprise visit from a drunk spectator.

Man looks away from camera. He has a cowboy hat on.
Jessi LeMay

The Reno Rodeo 100 is a multimedia storytelling series commemorating the event’s 100th anniversary. In this excerpt, Brett Scheerer from Businessman’s Steer Decorating, remembers a time when a poor soul lost his pants...at the Reno Rodeo. He shared the comical tale at an open mic night.

Reno Rodeo 100: 'Woman In Labor!'

Jun 24, 2019
Lucia Starbuck

The Reno Rodeo 100 is a multimedia storytelling series commemorating the event’s 100th anniversary. In this excerpt, Julianna Waller recounts the story of her sister’s birth - and how it almost happened at the event one year. She shared her story from the rodeo grounds. 

A woman holds a camera.
Lucia Starbuck

To celebrate and capture the history of the Reno Rodeo's 100th anniversary, multimedia storyteller Jessi LeMay has interviewed more than 75 individuals about their memories of this Western event. She’s talked to cowboys, competitors, queens and everyone in between for the project she's created, Reno Rodeo 100. She spoke with KUNR’s Lucia Starbuck about the project.

Reno Rodeo 100: Guy Clifton On The First Rodeo

Jun 21, 2019
A man in a white cowboy hat speaks into a mic.
Jessi LeMay

The Reno Rodeo kicked off this week for its 100th year. KUNR is covering the anniversary with several stories, including excerpts from a multimedia project called Reno Rodeo 100. For the project, locals have been sharing their memories of the rodeo during open mic nights. They include Guy Clifton, who has written a book about the event’s history. Today, he explains how the rodeo first began a century ago.

History Buff, Author & Rodeo Fan: Guy Clifton

Jun 18, 2019
A man in a black shirt, with black glasses and a grey goatee, stands in front of a large photo of a jumping horse.
Lucia Starbuck

Former journalist and current history buff Guy Clifton covered the Reno Rodeo for two decades and wrote a book on the event’s first 80 years. He’s teamed up with the Nevada Historical Society to showcase parts of the event’s history in a new exhibit. He spoke with KUNR’s Holly Hutchings about some of the unknown nuggets he’s discovered from years of research and reporting on this cultural staple.

A woman next to a microphone.
Paulapoundstone.com

Public radio listeners may already know Paula Poundstone from her long-running gig as a panelist on the NPR quiz show, "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me," but she currently is on tour, has a new puppy, loves vaccuum cleaners, and spoke about all of these things (and more!) with KUNR's Michele Ravera. Their conversation comes just before Poundstone is scheduled to perform in Reno on Saturday, June 1, at the Pioneer Center.

National Park Service

You may have heard of a mysterious 137-year-old Winchester rifle that was discovered in Nevada's Great Basin National Park a few years ago. It sparked worldwide interest at the time. Now, it's found a permanent home.

Beyond Signage: Exploring Neon As Art

May 3, 2019
Holly Hutchings

While neon once brought to mind retro advertising for seedy adult businesses and dive bars, it is now often seen as art. Holly Hutchings talks to one artist who has been making the colorful craft for decades.

How Neon Glows On

May 2, 2019
Holly Hutchings

Vibrant glowing tubes of neon have illustrated the Nevada story for a century, as they line quaint main streets and urban centers. The stories behind the bright and bended glass have also dominated our arts and culture coverage through the month of April in a series we called Sparked. Holly Hutchings took a deeper look into this part of our history with multiple stories. She talked to Bree Zender about the series and how neon lives on.

A man sits next to a neon bull.
Holly Hutchings

Persistence of vision. That’s what Will Durham, executive director of the Nevada Neon Project, calls it when he talks about seeing the Nevada Neon Project through years of setbacks and successes to achieve his ultimate goal to have a world-class museum in Reno. His goal is firm, as is his resolve and dedication to reach it.

Truckee Meadows Community College is canceling its lease at its Keystone Avenue Performing Arts Center. As first reported in ThisisReno last year, TMCC is not renewing its lease at the Keystone location for financial and safety reasons. Although considered by the college as far back as 2015, TMCC President Karin Hilgerson surprised faculty last year by quietly deciding not to renew the lease. 

Ensuring Neon's Place In Nevada History

Apr 23, 2019
Governor Steve Sisolak sits at his desk with kids behind him as he signs a bill they wrote and lobbied for.
Holly Hutchings

Like sturdy maple trees in Vermont or the sugary fried beignets of Louisiana, states have their own icons that instantly connect the symbol to its place. Nevada has neon. Some local advocates for the noble gas have been working to get its spot in the history books by making neon the state’s official element this legislative session.

The work paid off, and Governor Steve Sisolak signed the bill into law Tuesday, but the bill’s proponents are not who you might think, and KUNR’s Holly Hutchings has been following them for months.

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