Reno Artown Murals

Last July — that would be 2014 — a hubbub took over several pages in the RGJ. Circus Circus is promoting a contest to paint murals on the Virginia Street side of their Casino in a 24 hour Marathon. First, a competition was held to select 8 artists to paint 14 feet high by 30 feet long murals in each of 7 structural bays of the building. Circus Circus is providing the artists a $750 stipend for paint and other materials. On Saturday at 10am, brushes are be put down, the murals judged and the winner awarded a $2,000 First Prize. $1,000 goes for Second and $500 for Third and your mural will be on prominent display for one year along with the others.

Recently, my senses perked with the announcement in the RGJ for the 2015 contest. I clipped the RGJ and dusted off my camera. There’s a story here for RectorSite.

standby for new murals


blah blah
we all predict there will be enough paint and talent
I got to Virginia Street just at the right time on Saturday afternoon. Deadline past, Judging just completed but the street still closed for cleanup and tidy-up.
here we are, looking north on virginia street; left to right as you face circus circus
… and the first mural encountered just happens to be the winner of the SECOND PRIZE: Owl Be Waiting by Bryce Chisholm,
Yellow Bird by David Cherry, Reno NV

Tom by Stephane Cellier, Virginia City NV
FIRST PRIZE: Ascension by Anthony Padilla, Sacramento CA
Untitled by Asa Kennedy and Derek Miller…            the dry grass to the right and the pedestrians to the left seem to fit right in to this composition
Evolition of Man by Danielle Rumbaugh

Nice job… and they’ll be up all year, go take a look for yourself.




Do Sammy Proud


Harrah’s Reno August 18, 2014

about BROADWAY SHOWSTOPPERS (Harrah’s website)

Greg Thompson, who has produced more shows in the fabled Sammy’s Showroom at Harrah’s Reno than any other producer, will return this summer with an updated version to his long running hit show “Broadway Showstoppers”. Thompson, who calls the Sammy’s Showroom, “the best showroom in the business,” has produced over 600 shows throughout the world over his 40 year career. “Broadway Showstoppers” has won the “Show of the Year” in Atlantic City, Biloxi, Reno and Lake Tahoe and was inducted into the “Broadway Round Table Hall of Fame”.
“Broadway Showstoppers” was first produced in 1978 and has played throughout the country for more than 35 years. The show was the first of many shows Thompson produced for Harrah’s Reno beginning in 1991 and “Showstoppers” was brought back to Harrah’s in 1998 and again in 2005. Each time Thompson gives the show a new twist by adding current Broadway hits to the mix of classic Broadway blockbusters. “We will still pay tribute to the classic musicals from the Golden Age of Broadway like “West Side Story”, “Guys & Dolls”, “Grease”, “Chicago” and “Cabaret”, said Thompson, “but we will also be performing the hits from the hottest shows on Broadway today. The hits from Mamma Mia, Motown, Carole King’s “Beautiful”, “Jersey Boys”, “Rock of Ages”, Million Dollar Quartet and more!”

MY TAKE: Wow! Whatta show. The curtain rose to a grizzled fifty-something stage manager chomping a (fake) cigar and admonishing actors lounging at the back of the stage to get their act together. He proceeded to turn to us and tell stories about why they weren’t ready for the show — it’s Monday… we’re closed Monday — he came down the steps at the front of the stage to kibbutz with the audience and warm us up. Soon, two women in tight black dresses were at a dressing rack — rear stage left — fiddling with tidying their costumes. The stage manager was talking of great shows of the past — Sammy is Sammy Davis Jr. who played this room many times — and the Broadway shows that had passed through here. CABARET, for one — he broke into the “Welcome” song in German and was joined by the two women. They sang and danced their way through selected Cabaret numbers and the stage manager noted a well known Broadway story of Romeo and Juliet, set to music by Leonard Bernstein and two men wearing black jackets with JETS in white letters across the back joined the women.

“When you’re a JET
you’re a JET all the way
from you’re first cigarette
to you’re last dying day…”

Now, we have five actors, all with Broadway voices, Broadway dance moves and Broadway looks performing Broadway Showstoppers. And we’re in the FRONT ROW.

I was agonizing over what to do for Carol’s Birthday on Thursday when the Arts section appears in the RGJ. That’s it! ! ! Broadway Showstoppers. I got tickets for Monday August 18 in the VIP section of Sammy’s Showroom at Harrah’s Reno. Planned to do the buffet around 6:30, then the show at 8. Well, anytime you go to a show, or dinner or whatever at a Casino, the first thing to do is get a “locals” card (for out of towners, its called a players card. Good for a discount on the Buffet, at least… and in this case, complementary Showroom tickets. “Show it to the Box Office, they’ll refund your money spent on line and give you new tickets.” What did I know?

Harrah’s Carvings Buffet is pretty good. Good food, good variety, not noisy, a guy promptly serving drinks and picking up dirty dishes and the place is very clean with a clientele a cut above your bargain buffet. And restrooms are easy to find, commodious and clean.

When we gave our show tickets to the Maitre’d at the showroom, he took us to seats in the middle of the General Admission section. I looked surprised and mentioned that I bought VIP tickets on line, but when my “locals” card allowed me comp tickets, I traded them in, I thought for equal tickets. He allowed as how they weren’t packed and maybe he could do something for me and escorted us down through the VIP section to the FRONT ROW CENTER.

Carol — front and center — about 20 minutes before the show… the room eventually filled up.

I know he didn’t expect it, but I gave him ten bucks.

Great show and Great Evening. Everybody at Harrah’s seems enthusiastic about their interaction with customers. And not only that, they gave us a “locals” parking pass to their garage which happens to be right next to Aces Ballpark.

Harrah’s is a grand Discovery.

Rock out in Reno

Reno has the Rodeo, Hot August Nights, the Best in the West Nugget Rib Cook-Off, The Great Reno Balloon Race and now, Petty for Cash.

Hot August Nights, Packard on Virginia Street

Ribs… Yum

In celebration of their 22nd Anniversary on the air, KTHX, 100.1 THE X, threw a concert in the John Ascuaga’s NUGGET Celebrity Showroom. Tickets were 20 bucks each and ALL proceeds went to “Keep Truckee Meadows Beautiful” and the Washoe County School District Fine Arts and Music Program. Surely a worthy cause but I was hooked by the music concept:

20 Bands play 1 Tom Petty Song each.
How cool is that?

I didn’t waste time before ordering tickets for me and C, Brian and Natasza.
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A Tale of Two Rolls

Ossies lobroll at Creighton Point

Over Labor Day weekend I had a chance to enjoy two different lobster rolls with onion rings.

On our way up up to St. Andrews, New Brunswick for the long weekend we stopped at the Eagle’s Nest in Brewer, Maine after Alison Yelped for a good restaurant in the Bangor where we could have lunch with her sister, Leslie, and brother-in-law Rick, both of whom enjoy good food. Alison found rave reviews and an above average rating for the Eagle’s Nest which happened to be on Route 9 East heading toward Calais, Maine and the border.
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The Campaign

The Campaign (II) (2012)
85 min  –  Comedy  –   10 August 2012 (USA)
Director: Jay Roach
Writers: Chris Henchy (screenplay), Shawn Harwell (screenplay)
Stars: Will Ferrell, Zach Galifianakis and Jason Sudeikis


When long-term congressman Cam Brady (Will Ferrell) commits a major public gaffe before an upcoming election, a pair of ultra-wealthy CEOs plot to put up a rival candidate and gain influence over their North Carolina district. Their man: naïve Marty Huggins (Zach Galifianakis), director of the local Tourism Center. At first, Marty appears to be the unlikeliest possible choice but, with the help of his new benefactors’ support, a cutthroat campaign manager and his family’s political connections, he soon becomes a contender who gives the charismatic Cam plenty to worry about. As Election Day closes in, the two are locked in a dead heat, with insults quickly escalating to injury until all they care about is burying each other, in this mud-slinging, back-stabbing, home-wrecking comedy. — (C) Warner Bros.

MY TAKEThere are some brilliant and well written scenes… and who knew that Will Ferrell could be so raunchy? But c’mon, it’s an American star-vehicle, so don’t go looking for depth or insight. Just laugh and enjoy… we did.

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Last Time YOU had a Hot Weiner?

Naturally, the challenge for any foodie upon arrival in a (relatively) new city is to ‘get real.’ I’m happy to report that my first foray away from the convention hotel in downtown Raleigh, NC yielded a bullseye.

Apparently The Roast Grill, on S. West Street between W. Morgan and Hillsborough Streets, has been there since the 1930s serving hot dogs and Coke. That’s it. Your choice of toppings are mustard, chili, onions, and/or slaw. Their motto is ‘We burn them for you.’

The interior is tiny, with three two-seaters on one side and a tight bar along the grille that seats maybe 10 people, and has been decorated by the accumulation of Coca-Cola memorabilia. This is a local spot with the folks behind the counter holding conversations with almost every customer, lots of greetings when the door opens from both sides of the counters. What a find!

To Rome With Love

To Rome With Love

Monday July 23
Century Riverside 12, Reno
USA, 2012, 112 min
Directed by Woody Allen
Written by Woody Allen

Movie Info

To Rome with Love is a kaleidoscopic comedy movie set in one of the world’s most enchanting cities. The film brings us into contact with a well-known American architect reliving his youth; an average middle-class Roman who suddenly finds himself Rome’s biggest celebrity; a young provincial couple drawn into separate romantic encounters; and an American opera director endeavoring to put a singing mortician on stage. — (C) Sony Pictures Classics

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First Crop Garlic


Harvested last week, our Red Russian hardneck garlic is ready for action…


Spent Red Russian garlic cloves, mashed with THE BEST garlic press in the world, the Zyliss Susi, which is big enough to handle the large hardneck cloves (most commercial garlic is softneck), and built to press garlic WITHOUT peeling the cloves!

Moonrise Kingdom

Moonrise Kingdom
Thursday July 13
Century Riverside 12, Reno
USA, 2012, 94 min
Genre Drama

DirectorWes Anderson
WritersWes Anderson Roman Coppola
Bruce Willis
Edward Norton
Tilda Swinton
Bill Murray
Frances McDormand
Jason Schwartzman


Set on an island off the coast of New England in the summer of 1965, Moonrise Kingdom tells the story of two 12-year-olds who fall in love, make a secret pact, and run away together into the wilderness. As various authorities try to hunt them down, a violent storm is brewing off-shore — and the peaceful island community is turned upside down in every which way. Bruce Willis plays the local sheriff, Captain Sharp. Edward Norton is a Khaki Scout troop leader, Scout Master Ward. Bill Murray and Frances McDormand portray the young girl’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. Bishop. The cast also includes Tilda Swinton, Jason Schwartzman, and Bob Balaban; and introduces Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward as Sam and Suzy, the boy and girl.

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Ribs King Clean Plate Club

On the way home from Norris Lake in Tennessee after a week of sun and fun on the water with friends Brady & Holly, we stopped for dinner at the original Montgomery Inn in the Cincinnati suburb of Montgomery. I’ve heard about this place for years – since 1951 home of reputed great ribs with famous “Ribs King” sauce – but as far as I remember I’d never visited (unless I was there as a kid while Liz and Bus took me everywhere!) Well, I’ve decided it will likely be re-visited! The first photo shows us bibbed-up and ready to eat.
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