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Bill introduced in Carson City to keep Nevada Day on October 31st

Published: Feb. 16, 2021 at 3:20 PM PST
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CARSON CITY, Nev. (KOLO) - A Southern Nevada Assemblymember has introduced a bill in the state legislature to keep Nevada Day on October 31st.

In 1999, the Legislature moved the commemoration of Nevada’s statehood day to the last Friday in October. The official Nevada Day Parade is then held on the subsequent Saturday.

“For me, personally, I’ve brought the bill because a number of my constituents in Southern Nevada, many of whom are native Nevadans remember having Halloween off when they were kids and so they didn’t understand why it was ever changed in the first place” said Assemblyman Steve Yeager, (D) District 9. “I get these constant communications about why don’t we move Nevada Day back to the 31st because that’s actual Nevada Day. So I decided to put the bill in and see how this process plays out.”

Assemblyman Yeager admits he has never attended a Nevada Day Parade, noting that last year’s celebration was canceled due to COVID-19. Yeager also says his constituents in Southern Nevada want October 31st off so they can get their children ready for Halloween trick-or-treating.

Nevada Day, Inc. Executive Director Ken Hamilton argues that keeping the Nevada Day commemoration on a Friday opens up the celebration to other counties beyond Carson City. “We like that is it gives other counties the chance to participate in the parade, get up early, have a chance to get back. And also, people can come and stay the night if they have that opportunity to.”

Hamilton says, without the three day weekend, Carson City and nearby communities would be hurt financially. “If it falls, let’s say on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday, I think it would hurt the participants, first of all in the parade, because you’d probably only have more of your local Nevadans instead of people coming from Elko or Ely or some parts of Northern California.”

Hamilton also points out, celebrating Nevada Day on the 31st would raise confusion about when to hold the parade. “If it falls on a Monday, would you have it on a Sunday? That would be kind of confusing. If you had it on that Saturday, people would have Monday off, but they wouldn’t have the chance to come up that Friday and get ready for all the festivities over that weekend. So, yes, it would have an impact on the parade, even if we kept it on the last Saturday, even if we did that, it would still not be a three day weekend. I mean, every once in a while it would be. But if you don’t have that Friday off and it falls on a Wednesday, the state employee or whoever would have that Wednesday off, they’ll have the Saturday off, but not the Friday, so you’re going to lose, you’re still not a three day weekend.”

Asemblymember Yeager says he does not know if the Bill will be taken up by the Legislature this session, but he agrees with Hamilton that he wants more Nevadans to participate in the celebration of the Silver State. “My hope in all of this is, really, is no matter what happens to the bill, I want to see more participation from Southern Nevada in some of the festivities that happen up here in Northern Nevada. I think a lot of my constituents feel very removed from the celebrations that happen up here.”

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