Reno ready for sizzling summer

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RENO, Nev. -- As spring turns into summer, the event calendar is heating up in Reno.

The two big annual events are the rodeo, held in late June, and Artown, a monthlong bonanza of cultural activities.

The rodeo, which began in 1919 and is billed as the "Wildest, Richest Rodeo in the West," will be held from June 16 through 24.

In addition to an opening night country music concert with singers Mark Chesnutt, Lee Ann Womack and Chris LeDoux, the rodeo will feature such events as calf roping, bull riding, barrel racing, steer wrestling and mutton bustin'.

Mutton bustin', for the uninitiated, is essentially a race for kids, but on sheep instead of horses.

For more information, call (775) 329-3877 or visit the rodeo's Web site at www.renorodeo.com.

Artown, in its sixth year, is an arts festival featuring music, film, dance and visual arts.

Last year, more than 137,000 people attended the festival, which had more than 200 events.

Activities for this year's event, from July 1 to 31, include a performance by the Area 51 Dance Theater, a series of films in Wingfield Park, international ethnic music, classical music, plays and visual arts exhibits.

Although some events charge an admission fee, many activities are free of charge.

For more on Artown, call (800) 287-7909 or visit www.artown.org.

Other notable Reno events include the Reno Basque Festival, which will take place July 21 and 22.

The celebration of the community's Basque heritage is held downtown and features food, dancing and other activities.

In August, Reno will be the site of the Nevada State Fair, which runs from Aug. 22 to 26.

The show showcases livestock exhibits as well as carnival rides and other goodies.

For more information about travel in the Reno and Lake Tahoe area, visit www.renolaketahoe.com.

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