Dayton is central, but not all there is

Complaints, complaints, everyone has one. Someone called my editor recently to complain that there should be no Virginia City items in the Dayton Appeal, even though the masthead also reads "Covering Lyon County, Storey County and Churchill County."

I usually write my main story on an issue or event in Dayton or other Lyon County community, but since Dayton and the other locales in Lyon are mostly bedroom communities, some days there's not a lot going on for the briefs and calendar.

If I kept Virginia City items out of the briefs and calendar, there would be a large white space in that part of the paper, because there's not a lot of entertainment options in Dayton, Stagecoach or Silver Springs. There is in Mound House, but I can't exactly write about brothels every week.

We do put in a lot of Dayton items, but don't have enough to fill the space.

Also, I see a lot of Dayton residents visiting Virginia City on the weekends, so I think some folks appreciate being told on Friday what's going on up the hill on Saturday and Sunday.

Now, if Traditions casino or the Dayton Valley Country Club casino ever get built, there will probably be more from them being put in the Dayton section.

As for this column, well there are reasons why I write more about Virginia City.

• The main story is about Dayton (usually), so my column gives the page a little balance if it is about Virginia City.

• There are more weir... uh ... unique people in Virginia City than in Dayton, despite having about a 10 to 1 population disadvantage. There are weir ... uh ... unique people in Dayton, too, but if they go straight from work to home, I don't come across them.

• I live in VC and it's easier to get column fodder. But I'm not stuck to that. Any Daytonite, (or Mound Houser, or Stagecoacher or Silver Springs-ite) that has a cool story or unusual experience to share please call me. I'd love to write about it.

But for now, I know I write mostly about Virginia City. Last week I wrote about tourist foibles, one of which being very serious - not looking both ways before you cross the street. Others were meant more humorously, tourists standing in doorways and driving too slow and that sort of thing.

One reader, identified as "Vcreader," put a note on the Appeal's reader's blog in response. Here it is:

Ms. Woodmansee, you forgot to mention the petty bickering and backstabbing that is a mainstay of the locals in VC. As for the tourists, there has always been a love-hate relationship between the locals and the tourists. The business owners love the tourists money, but "did you hear what that crazy tourist did today?" is very common talk in the bars, where, by the way, tourists aren't usually very welcome because they don't drink much, if at all. They go to Reno or Tahoe to party.

I don't respond on the Appeal blog, because it is a reader's forum, so I'd like to carry on the conversation here.

"Vcreader," thanks for reading my column. I appreciate your comments, and see some of your points, but not all of them.

I think there's more of a love-hate relationship with the tourists when it comes to driving. I hate being behind a behemoth RV headed to Reno, but I know the people in that RV probably helped add to the income of some of my neighbors, and I hope they had a good time and come back. So I grit my teeth and try to bear it. By the way, my favorite bumper sticker in Virginia City reads "Welcome to Virginia City. Now use the @#$% turnouts." (It's the D-word folks, don't get too excited).

If tourists do something silly or crazy, how do you not talk about it or write about it? It doesn't mean you don't like them, it means you are entertained by them. I hope they are entertained by us, too, considering some of the antics we put on.

There are a few saloons that cater primarily to locals, and maybe some of those folks are persnickety, but I don't agree that tourists aren't welcome. I was in the Washoe Club again and some visitors from Carson who had read last week's column came in and agreed that looking out from the bar you can't see who is in the doorway, so you squint and look mean.

Tourists do go to bars; I know because that's where I meet them. It is true that they probably drink less than locals, but, hey, who doesn't?

Seriously, the Bucket of Blood gets enough tourists who drink to pay the Comstock Cowboys most weeks, and that band doesn't come cheap. The Delta, Ponderosa and Washoe Club, Union Brewery, Gold Hill, Mark Twain, all welcome tourists. Heck, the Washoe even welcomes their kids! The sign outside says "Kids welcome with well-behaved adults." And who throws their bras up on the light fixtures of the Union Brewery? According to the owner, it's mostly tourists.

As for backstabbing and bickering, that happens everywhere. Just look at the presidential campaign.

But thanks for reading and giving your input, which makes writing a column worthwhile.

I'll end with a response from "nvshoer" to "Vcreader's" comments, which I hope is the experiences of many.

Yeah, I kinda missed being up there as a former local in V.C. since I was the deaf one up there I never heard the backstabbing about me haha! I admit I have drank too much at the local watering holes but boy did I have a blast. Every bartender knew it was Jack & seven for me before I sat on the bar stool. I moved to Ohio building industrial plants, I promise I'll come and visit next summer!

"Nvshoer," if you do, meet me at the Washoe. Maybe "Vcreader" will join us. I'll buy you both a drink!

• Contact reporter Karen Woodmansee at or call 881-7351.


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