I have to admit, Beth Hondl and I were shocked and excited the Reno-Sparks Conventions and Visitors Authority offered to fly us to Reno and put us up at the Silver Legacy, just so we’d come and film a segment about their Santa Crawl this past weekend.

We really couldn’t believe it.

“Are you sure?” We asked. “For free?”

Turns out, we were spending a full 22 hours in Reno and as we boarded our Southwest flight out of Oakland, the pilot comes over the loudspeaker, announcing that we “might” be diverted due to weather and that our flight would be “rougher than a stucco bathtub.”

Yep. For free.

I was seated in between Beth H. and a gentleman who kept all of his important business documents in a plastic Walgreens bag, which he treated much like an heirloom valise. I distracted myself from the appalling turbulence by observing plastic bag guy and 30 death-defying minutes later, we had landed in Reno.

Jill, the nicest publicist on the face of the planet picked us up and took us to the Silver Legacy where Beth H. and I each got our own room! I don’t mean to sound like a yokel here, but we make 3-minute wacky videos because we think it’s fun. Someone was rolling out the red carpet for us and by the time I discovered the hot tub in my hotel room, well, I was screaming down the hallway.

“Beth! Oh my God, Beth! Do you have one?”

This is hilarious, we agreed. And about fucking time.

Immediately, Jill wanted to take us 45 minutes up a mountain to Mount Rose, where hundreds of skiers dressed as Santa would be hitting the slopes. However, since the time we’d landed to the time we discovered the hot tubs in our 70’s porn star hotel rooms, a massive blizzard had taken over Reno.

Jill enlisted the skills of her husband, the adorable Howie, who drove us up the mountain through what was rapidly becoming Donner-esque conditions. Jill and Howie met, I leaned, at the New Orleans Jazz festival and they are quite possibly, the cutest, nicest people in Reno.

“Thank you so much, Howie!” We gushed, sipping our Starbucks and nervously pointing out that one could not actually see the road. “You’re literally a life-saver!”

Lo and behold, we made it to Mount Rose safe and sound. There, we met up with Serene, the San Francisco based publicist (and my friend) who’d set the whole thing up. And Serene had brought along her friend, Sara. As we began to film, I realized we were surrounded by the biggest entourage of publicists we’d ever had. It was heaven! Jill, Serene and Sara added an element of credibility to The Beths we’d yet to experience. And it made asking for interviews a lot easier.

That is, until we got snowed in.

Please enjoy the first of two segments on The Beths trip to Reno. This one captures our time on Mount Rose. The second, currently in post-production (that’d be an industry term) will be of the Reno Santa Crawl, an experience from which I may never recover.

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  • antfaber

    You should have brought a copy of “The Donner Family Cookbook” just in case…