Hot August Nights: Love it or Hate it?

By: Auburn Hutton Email
By: Auburn Hutton Email

A lot of people count the summer days until Hot August Nights comes around...but there are some locals who say they don't love the classic car event, although they do realize how important it is to our local economy.

Hot August Nights seems to take over the Truckee Meadows this time of year. Thousands of local car lovers and tourists from all over the country, gather around their most prized possessions for one week each year.

"It started small and now it engulfs the whole city. I can only see it getting bigger," said Ken Maitland from Anaheim, CA.

Some locals hope it does grow. They say the economy would struggle without the nearly 230 million dollars the event brings in. Organizers estimate that each Hot August Nights attendee spends around 450 dollars on gaming, 215 dollars on food and 945 dollars on lodging, not to mention gas, souvenirs and upkeep on their classic cars.

"We all spend money. I spend $3500 every year, no problem," said Nate Cermiglia of Carson City.

"We take advantage of all the two for one meals. We eat at a lot of other restaurants too. We are eating at the Atlantis tonight," said Darrell Little of Palo Cedro, CA.

Just across the street from the Atlantis' celebration, this local father and son enjoyed a quiet lunch in the shade. Jesse Essenaro says he likes the classic cars...but what he doesn't like is the traffic, the congestion and all the people who crowd into the streets.

"We know it's coming. You just get ready for it and plan around it," said Jesse Esenarro of Reno.

Another local, Shirley Kern, says she can't believe how much Hot August Nights has grown. While she also appreciates the economy boost, she says she's just glad the event only lasts a week.

"I don't go downtown. In the evenings, you can't go downtown. Some of the problems with people drinking too much. We don't have that normally. That's what Hot August Nights brings in," said Shirley Kern.

Some of the concerns over the downtown nightlife were addressed by city officials this year. Council members voted to cancel the annual Saturday night cruise, at the request of local police officers.


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