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Reno - The other Las Vegas

Febbraio 2015
Reno, in Nevada, è una piccola Las Vegas. Negli anni ‘50 era una meta turistica gettonatissima, e molti film - con mafia e casinò! - sono ambientati in questa cittadina, dove non si gioca solo d’azzardo ma si può anche sciare, visitare il fantastico lago e i bellissimi festival di macchine, mongolfiere...

di Talitha Linehan

File audio:

The Reno Balloon Race takes place in September.
The Reno Balloon Race takes place in September.

Speaker: Chuck Rolando (Standard American accent)

Las Vegas is the most famous city in Nevada and one of the most famous cities in the United States, but did you know that Nevada has another great city, called Reno?


Reno is older than Las Vegas, and in the 1950s, it was a more popular tourist destination. It had the world’s biggest casino, called the Bank Club. And it was the gambling capital of America. Now Reno has to compete with Las Vegas, which is the gambling capital of the world. Reno has closed many of its oldest and smallest casinos in recent years.
People still go to Reno to gamble, but they also go there to do other fun things. The city is near two important attractions, the Sierra Nevada mountains and Lake Tahoe, and about 20 ski resorts. In the summer, people go there to do water sports, hiking and cycling. In the winter, they go skiing and snowboarding.


There are also lots of fun events in Reno. In May, there’s a two-day celebration of music for Cinco de Mayo, which means “fifth of May” in Spanish. In June, there’s a rally for motorcycle fans called Street Vibrations. In August, there’s the country’s biggest classic car convention, called Hot August Nights.
In September, Reno has two grand events in the sky. The first is the Great Reno Balloon Race, which has about 100 hot air balloons. The second is the Reno Air Races, which has aeroplanes doing elaborate stunts and acrobatics. It’s a fantastic spectacle!


Even if you’ve never been to Reno, you’ve probably seen it many times. That’s because it has been the location for many famous TV shows and films, especially ones about gambling, crime and the mafia. People often use Reno to look like an old Las Vegas – because it has a lot of old buildings and casinos.
One of the most famous Reno films is the original, 1960 version of Ocean’s Eleven. This starred Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, Jr. and other members of the “Rat Pack.” The film is about a group of men who plan to rob five different Las Vegas casinos in one night. Reno was also the location for The Misfits (1961), Pink Cadillac (1989), Sister Act (1992), and Magnolia (1999).


Last year, Reno celebrated its 111th anniversary by creating the Reno Historical App. This app enables you to explore the city’s most famous people, places and events. You can get it for free at: renohistorical.org

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The "Rat Pack". Un termine usato per indicare un gruppo di attori e cantanti famosi che facevano dei film assieme negli anni ‘50 e ‘60. Il gruppo comprendeva Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr. e altri, anche se il padre fondatore era Humphrey Bogart. The Rat Pack significa letteralmente “il branco di ratti” e negli anni ‘80 abbiamo visto The Brat Pack (il branco di monelli) con Emilio Estevez, Demi Moore e Rob Lowe, e più recentemente The Frat Pack (il branco di studenti universitari) con Owen Wilson, Ben Stiller e Vince Vaughn.