The Convention Center
area serves a variety of purposes in southern Reno.
The Reno-Sparks Convention Center acts as the focal point attracting both locals and visitors to its many expositions, trade shows and performances. The complex's location allows easy access to the Reno-Tahoe International Airport and some of Reno's best hotels and casinos. With a very suburban layout, residential, commercial and industrial properties encircle the Convention Center.
Locals meet most of their shopping and service needs nearby, while visitors take advantage of the many activities around the Sierra Nevada region.
Virginia Avenue functions as the area's major street, giving residents direct access to downtown Reno
located 3.5 miles to the north. Highway 395 runs through the Convention Center Area, providing a faster link to downtown or to Carson City and the ski areas.
Schools in Convention Center
School data provided by GreatSchools
Restaurants & Nightlife
Even with its generic appearance, the Convention Center area contains a diverse restaurant and nightlife scene. Some of Reno's best food can be found within the many strip malls that define the neighborhood.
Bangkok Cuisine South cooks up authentic Thai food that attracts a large following. Make reservations for evening meals, and when you order the Pad Thai, let the waiter know what level of spiciness you want in your dish. To avoid the crowds, try one of the lunch combos for $7.95.
Naan and Kabab serves some of Reno's finest Mediterranean food. Order one of its signature entrees, like the Kabab Koobedeh mixed with ground chuck, filet, sirloin and lamb, for just $12.95.
Residents also enjoy heading to the Peppermill Casino's buffet, the largest and most popular in Reno. Go for the Sunday Champagne Brunch at $22.99 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. or the Friday Seafood Spectacular from 4:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. for $31.99.
The Great Basin Brewing Company provides an upscale pub atmosphere along with award-winning beers. Happy hour runs weekdays from 3 p.m to 6 p.m. with $1 pizza slices, and come to Tightwad Tuesdays, where most beers go for $2.50 all day.
The Peppermill Casino also contains the "Edge Nightspot," one of Reno's hottest clubs. Patrons enjoy a Vegas-like atmosphere, but at only half the cost. The club attracts DJs from across the nation, with music running until 5 a.m.
History & Culture
In the mid-19th century, Reno's history took root from the gold discovery in Virginia City and the mining of the Comstock Lode. The city grew due its proximity to the Truckee River and from the need for railroad connections to ship gold and goods across the country. Reno's growth ebbed as the mining boom waned in the 20th century, with many residents leaving. The city received another boost in 1931 when Nevada legalized gambling.
In 1960, the airport built its first major terminal for the coming of the Winter Olympics. Five years later, the Centennial Coliseum was built, later renamed the Reno-Sparks Convention Center in 1982. Virginia Avenue served as Highway 395 until the new freeway alignment came in the 1980's, bringing more suburbanization into the area.
Reno hosts its annual Artown Festival every July, a two-week arts celebration, featuring a wide spectrum of local artists, musicians and culinary delights.
With its wide streets and suburban layout, driving stands as the preferred method for navigating the Convention Center area.
The Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) provides moderate bus service across the Reno area, with service lacking in some of the residential neighborhoods.
Taxis station themselves near the Convention Center, airport and the many casinos in the area. Uber operates its ride sharing service in Reno.
Drivers find plenty of free parking provided by the casinos and shopping malls. Highway 395 can easily be accessed from the Convention Center area, with two freeway entrances near Virginia Avenue.
With most destinations separated by long distances, most pedestrians avoid the Convention Center area. With high speeds along the major streets, cycling can be unnerving. Cyclists prefer taking the bike lanes along Kietzke Lane instead of riding with traffic along Virginia Avenue.
Due to its proximity to major amenities, the cost of living in Reno sits around 3.9 percent greater than the national average. Riding the RTC bus costs $2 one way to reach downtown Reno, or buy an all-day pass for $5. Rent in the Convention Center area averages to $663 for a one-bedroom
apartment. Going out for a beer costs $2 to $7, but casinos offer free drinks while gambling. Compared to the national average, gas prices in Reno cost about 9 percent higher. The gas stations near the rental car agencies carry higher prices.
Virginia Avenue functions as the Convention Center area's major shopping thoroughfare.
The Meadowood Mall operates as Reno's largest shopping mall. This shopping center includes over 100 stores, including a Macy's, JCPenney and Sears.
Bobo's Mogul Mouse Ski & Patio serves as Reno's best local ski shop. Its helpful staff assists customers in finding the proper equipment and advising the proper ski area that suits their skill levels. The store carries a large selection of skis, snowboards and clothing at reasonable prices.
Comic Kingdom holds a reputation for being Reno's favorite comic book store. The shop carries a significant selection of comics, collectibles, artwork and tabletop games, attracting enthusiasts from Nevada and California.
The Convention Center area contains many major supermarkets, including a Trader Joe's, Food Source, Grocery Outlet and Walmart. The nearest farmers market to the Convention Center area occurs Thursdays in Midtown Reno from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., running between June and August.
The Convention Center area contains a few parks off of the major streets. Manzanita Park functions as the neighborhood's best all-around public park. Families bring their children to the extended playground area and large lawn space. The park also contains a basketball court, softball field, tennis courts and fitness
apparatus. The adjoining Moana and Tighe Parks host softball, soccer and baseball for serious competition.
With no off leash dog parks in the Convention Center area, pet
owners walk their dogs at the nearby Virginia Lake Park.
Hot August Nights takes place across Reno as the city's largest event of the year. Thousands take to street to celebrate the city's love affair with classic cars and rock and roll.