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Thanksgiving Day Weekend Activities and Events

Ways to Enjoy the Thanksgiving Day Holiday in Reno and Sparks

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Halloween Fun around Reno

Halloween activities, events, trick or treat, Reno, Nevada, NV Halloween activities around Reno happen all during the month of October and offer something for everyone.

Nevada Day Parade

Nevada Day parade, Carson City, Nevada, NV Nevada Day is a state holiday celebrating Nevada statehood on October 31, 1864, the 36th state of the United States.

Day Out With Thomas

Day Out With Thomas, Virginia Truckee Railroad, Virginia City, Nevada, NV Day Out with Thomas, The Steam Team Tour, will be in Virginia City on two weekends. Take a ride with the classic storybook engine and enjoy fun activities for the entire family.

Ride the Polar Express

Polar Express, Virginia Truckee Railroad, Nevada, NV Riding The Polar Express™ to the North Pole has become a popular family outing during the Christmas holiday season in the Reno / Tahoe area.

UNR Wolf Pack Football

Wolf Pack football, University Nevada, Reno Nevada Wolf Pack football home games are played in Mackay Stadium on the University of Nevada, Reno campus.

Thanksgiving Day and weekend in Reno and Sparks have many options for participating in family friendly events. It's a time when activities revolve around good food and visiting with family and friends. Thanksgiving Day 2018 is on Thursday, November 22.

For Thanksgiving dinner, lots of people like to eat out. There are great places around Reno and Sparks to enjoy this special meal. Learn where from my article "Thanksgiving Day Dining in Reno and Sparks."

Meet the Turkeys Open House at Rancho San Rafael Regional Park

Saturday, November 10, 2018. Celebrate the season of the turkey by bringing the family to Rancho San Rafael Regional Park for this free event from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tthere will be horse and pony rides provided by Lorie's Pony Express at a cost of $5, farm animals, Moolisa the milking cow from the Nevada Department of Agriculture, fall crafts, scavenger hunts, and activities with Discovery Room volunteers, Truckee Meadow Parks Foundation, May Arboretum Society and Urban Roots. Also, the Washoe County librarians will have story time and activities. Bring your camera for fall and Thanksgiving photos with the turkeys. Please bring a non-perishable food item to donate to the Food Bank of Northern Nevada.

Scheels Turkey Trot

Thursday, November 22, 2018 - Bring the family to the Scheels Turkey Trot and work up an appetite for that big meal later in the day. Participants can choose from a fun 2 mile walk or run, or a timed 10K run. Races start and finish by Scheels in the Outlets at Sparks, 1200 Scheels Drive. The 2 miler circles around Sparks Marina Park and the 10K course takes the local bike path and nearby city streets. The 10K starts at 8:30 a.m. and the 2 mile fun run shortly thereafter. Every runner and walker receives a commemorative long-sleeve souvenir shirt, fruit and refreshments. Proceeds benefit Keep Truckee Meadows Beautiful and the City of Sparks Youth Scholarship Fund. For more information, e-mail or call (775) 353-7898. Dogs, bikes, skateboards, scooters and skates are prohibited at the event.

Wobble Before You Gobble 10K / 5K Race

Thursday, November 22, 2018. Wobble Before You Gobble is a family fun run/walk/wobble on Thanksgiving morning. This event starts at the Reno City Plaza and follows the Truckee River path through Idlewild Park before heading back to the finish line. Online registration is available. Event benefits The Children's Cabinet. (775) 470-5826.

Candy Cane Express Trains on the V&T Railroad

November 23, 24 and December 1, 2 8, 9, 15, 16, 2018. There will be two trains each day departing from the Virginia City depot (166 F Street), at 12 noon and 2 p.m. You'll ride in vintage Virginia and Truckee Railroad cars, heated for this chilly time of year. Enjoy hot chocolate, cider, candy canes and cookies during these holiday trips. The fare is $19 for adults, $9 for kits 2 to 12. Under 2 ride free on an adult's lap. Reservations required - buy tickets online. You can buy tickets the day of the event if any seats are available after trains are boarded, but don't count on it. For more information, call (775) 847-0380.

Reno Ice Skating Rink

Wednesday, November 21, 2018. The Downtown Reno Ice Rink at Greater Nevada Field opens on November 21 with a Grand Opening Kick Off Party and will be open throughout the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. On Saturday, November 24, there will be an 80's Themed Dance Party. There is skating every day through the winter season.

Polar Express on the V&T Railroad

November 16 through December 24, 2018 - The special Polar Express™ excursions on the V&T during Thanksgiving weekend (no rides on Thanksgiving Day) give families and kids a chance to experience the holiday spirit just like in the movie of the same name. There are three runs per day and tickets go fast - get advance tickets online or you may be left at the station. For information, call (775) 291-0208 or toll-free at (877) 724-5007.

The Unbelievables Christmas Extravaganza at The Eldorado

November 16, 2018 through January 6, 2019. Featuring "America's Got Talent" semi-finalist Evie Clair and many other great acts from around the globe, this family-friendly show has it all – jaw-dropping magic, breathtaking circus acts, including sand art, magical doves, duo trapeze straps, the Russian bar and local school choirs singing your favorite Christmas carols. Tickets are available online. For more information on show times and tickets call 800-879-8879. The Eldorado is at 345 North Virginia Street in Reno.

Crafts for Christmas at The Nugget

Friday through Sunday, November 23 - 25, 2018. Holiday gift fair in the Sierra Convention Rooms with free admission and parking. The event includes Christmas food and drink demos, florist holiday arrangement-making exhibitions, holiday performances, gift wrapping with donations and Santa Claus from noon to 4 p.m. each day. Open Friday from 12 noon to 6 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Magic of Christmas Parade at Shoppers Square

Friday, November 23, 2018, 11 a.m. This is a long-time tradition at Shoppers Square. Come to this free event and see holiday characters, marching bands, and more at Reno's only Christmas parade. The big finale will feature Santa Claus arriving by horse and sleigh. There's also a Christmas tree lot run by Boy Scout Troop 107. Shoppers Square is at the corner of S. Virginia Street and E. Plumb Lane in Reno.

Nevada Museum of Art

This Thanksgiving weekend, the Nevada Museum of Art has a number of on-going exhibits suitable for family visits. Of particular interest are the exhibits titled "Anne Brigman: A Visionary in Modern Photography" and "Art of the Greater West." The Museum will be closed on Thanksgiving Day and open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. from Friday, November 23 through Sunday, November 25, 2018.

Other Museums and Shows

Many Reno / Sparks museums, and also those down in Carson City, have a variety of exhibits and activities available during the Thanksgiving holidays. Check "Museums, Culture, and Shows in Reno / Sparks, Nevada" to see what's available. Be sure to call ahead for holiday hours.

Movies during Thanksgiving Day Weekend

There will be lots of good movies in local theaters during this holiday season. You can lessen the holiday hassle and avoid lines at the theater by buying advance tickets online. And don't forget to consider movie tickets as gifts, something just about everyone enjoys.

"Finding Neverland" at the Pioneer Center

Friday through Sunday, November 23 - 25, 2018. FINDING NEVERLAND tells the incredible story behind one of the world's most beloved characters: Peter Pan. There will be five shows at the Pioneer Center in Reno. Tickets are available online or by calling (775) 686-6600.

Thanksgiving Day Weekend, Reno, Sparks, Nevada, NV

Star Shows at the Fleischmann Planetarium

Travel out of this world with star shows and parties at the Fleischmann Planetarium at the University of Nevada, Reno. There are a number of new and continuing shows playing right now, plus star parties every Friday of the month at Maclean Observatory in south Reno. Show tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for children, seniors, UNR, WCSD, military. Groups are $5 each. Fall hours are 12 noon to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, Friday from 12 noon to 9 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Open hours on holidays are 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Closed on Thanksgiving Day. Call (775) 784-4812 for more information.

Thanksgiving Weekend at Animal Ark

Friday and Saturday, November 23 - 24, 2018. Bring the family to enjoy the animals in the cooler temperatures of late fall when they are active and frisky. The predators are putting on their winter coats and the bears are gorging themselves in preparation for winter hibernation. If you aren't wild about the annual holiday shopping frenzy after Thanksgiving, come out to the Animal Ark and get wild with the animals. Admission is $12 for adults, $10 children (3 to 12), $11 seniors (62+), free for age 2 and under. Hours are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. From Reno, take U.S. 395 north, turn right on Red Rock Road, go 11.5 miles, then right onto Deerlodge Road. For more information, call (775) 970-3111 (area code required). Weather may cancel - call 1-775-970-3111 before driving out and listen to the recording for any changes due to weather.

Thanksgiving Weekend Skiing and Snowboarding

Lake Tahoe area ski resorts like to open for the big Thanksgiving holiday weekend, but snowfall generated by Mother Nature has a lot to do with it. Avid skiers and snowboarders will know if conditions are good. Everyone else can get the latest information from the websites of those resorts they are interested in visiting.

Go Play in the Snow

If there is enough snow, Sierra Nevada and Lake Tahoe area snow play areas and ski resorts will be ready for slipping and sliding. If the weather is nice during the break, it will be a great time to take the kids up to the mountains for some sledding, tubing, and other fun in the snow. There are some really nice places close to the Reno area. Call ahead or check the website to make sure your destination is open for the season.

Wolf Pack Football

Saturday, November 24, 2018. The Nevada Wolf Pack football team takes on the UNLV Rebels in the "Battle for the Fremont Cannon." This intra-state rivalry is always a big game. This year, it's down in Las Vegas. Kickoff is 6:30 p.m. Go Pack!

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