Patrick Scanlon went to school Thursday with a holster slung around his hips and a cowboy hat pulled low over his eyes. But it was more than a Halloween costume: It was a celebration of his heritage.
"I've been in Nevada for 10 years and I support Nevada," said 10-year-old Patrick. "It is my home state."
Patrick joined other cowboys, Indians and pioneers who dressed up for Bordewich-Bray Elementary School's celebration of the day Nevada became a state.
"As educators, we wanted the students to learn tradition," said principal Sue Keema. "We want them to know the actual date Nevada became a state. If they live it, they'll understand it."
Students spent the day traveling to about 20 stations living Nevada's history, from panning for gold to learning to rope and the ways of American Indians.
Tanna Rupert, 10, is a member of the Washoe Tribe and wore a traditional dress her mother made for her. Tanna was happy to see her classmates learning about her culture.
"It's quite important," she said. "(The Indians) found things that other people didn't. And they built houses without having to cut down trees. They made them out of dirt and grass."
John Considine, who goes by the name Two Falls, dressed in animal brain-tanned leather leggings with a necklace of badger claws around his neck and a hat made of coyote fur on his head for his mountain man demonstration.
Considine demonstrated how to start a fire with flint and steel, to set and trip a beaver trap and to shoot a muzzle-loading rifle.
"It hearkens back to time when people had to be more self reliant," he said. "Mountain men were very important to the opening of the West."
Nevada Day is celebrated throughout the state on the last weekend of October, but became a state Oct. 31, 1864.