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Amgen Tour of California Tahoe Stage 1 may face snow challenge

Amgen Tour of California officials say they should have a decision by 9 a.m. as to what they intend to do about the Stage 1 kick-off set to begin at South Lake Tahoe given that snow is expected in the Sierra through the morning.

Race organizers, the commissaires, teams and public safety organizations have developed a number of contingency plans with the safety of the riders and fans being the number one priority, said Andrew Messick, President of AEG Sports, and presenter of the Amgen Tour of California.

The National Weather Service in Reno has issued a winter weather advisory for Lake Tahoe and the Sierra, with the bulk of the snow hitting the area before 11 a.m. Two to 4 inches of snow is expected at lake level, with 3 to 6 inches above 7,000 feet, according to the weather service. The snow should taper to showers after 11 a.m.

"The weather is constantly changing in the Sierra, and our team will be assessing weather conditions throughout the morning. A decision on any changes to the route and timing will be made at 9 a.m. and will ultimately be based on what is best and most safe for our riders and spectators," he said in a press statement. South Lake Tahoe radio station KTHO will be on-air through the morning and afternoon with live reporting. Click here for the best places to view the tour during the Tahoe stages.

Despite the weather and the Highway 50 over Echo Summit detour, organizers of the Tahoe part of the event have put forth a valiant effort to welcome riders and visitors, with a number of events, banquets and presentations.

Given the worldwide attention paid to the race, Lake Tahoe has stuck to its fundamentals which has been to showcase the region as a serious home to professional athletic competition and training. The elevation and altitude gains alone make for a climate that supports athletic winter and summer sports training, including many Olympic athletes.

“Whether it’s skinny or fat tires, Tahoe is a passionate biking community,” said Carol Chaplin, executive director of the Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority. “Hosting the Amgen Tour of California, the country’s most prestigious bike race, will put us on the map as ‘must ride’ for cyclists while having a significant impact on the local and regional economy.”

“There is nothing quite like riding at elevation — 6,300 feet,” said Andy Chapman, tourism director of the North Lake Tahoe Resort Association. “These cyclists are going to be pushing the envelope as they make their way up and down mountain passes and not once but twice around the national treasure of Emerald Bay State Park for a grand finish at Northstar-at-Tahoe Resort. Equally spectacular will be the Stage 2 Start at Squaw Valley USA with Tahoe’s famed granite peaks making for an unforgettable backdrop.”

Considered the largest cycling race in North America, the 2011 Amgen Tour of California will cover nearly 800 miles over eight days and feature 18 of the world’s top professional cycling teams. Traversing some of the state’s most picturesque highways and coastlines, the sixth-annual race kicks off at MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa today at 10:30, weather permitting and tomorrow at Squaw Valley USA to Truckee. The race will continue on to 15 host cities through May 22. Click here for the list of teams.

If all goes as planned and the snow doesn't stick, here's what the schedule looks like:

Today – Stage 1
The Stage 1 2011 Amgen Tour of California around Lake Tahoe will be assisted by the South Lake Tahoe Police Department, in conjunction with the California Highway Patrol (CHP) and El Dorado County Sheriff’s office.

In support of this event, Highway 50, (Lake Tahoe Boulevard) and State Route 89 (Emerald Bay Road) north of the “Y” will be closed to all vehicular traffic from 10:10 a.m. to approximately 10:45 a.m. for lap one. It will again close at approximately 12:45 p.m. and re-open at approximately 1:15 p.m. for lap two. The timing for the second closure can vary greatly depending on the speed of the race and how spread apart the riders get for their second stint through the city.

For times when the tour will pass a street or road in South Shore click here.Officials suggest providing at least a 30-minute window on each side of the time listed. All times are approximate.

In North Lake Tahoe, the CHP is handling the rolling road closures on both the California and Nevada sides of the lake. Based on the Race Day Map, motorists can expect Highway 28 to be closed approximately 11:20 to 11:55 a.m. at the Tahoe City Y during lap one and between 2:20 to 2:55 p.m. during lap two. In Kings Beach, it’s 11:45 a.m. to 12:20 p.m. for lap one and 2:45 to 3:20 p.m. for lap two, as well as noon to 12:35 p.m. in Incline Village.

Monday, May 16 – Stage 2
On Monday, May 16, the Amgen Tour of California will be coming from Squaw Valley USA through Truckee. The Truckee Police Department, in conjunction with the California Highway Patrol, will be providing traffic control for this event while it is in the Town of Truckee.

The event will enter Town limits on State Route 89 (SR-89) from Squaw Valley. It will continue northbound on SR-89 to Donner Pass Road, make a left turn onto westbound Donner Pass Road and continue on Donner Pass Road along Donner Lake, up to Old US-40 and the Donner Summit area.

Road closures will be of a short duration as the cyclists pass major intersections and should start about 9:50 a.m. on SR-89 and West River Street, and at about 10 a.m. at SR-89 and Donner Pass Road, progressing westbound on Donner Pass Road to the Donner Lake area and finally exiting Town limits by 10:30 a.m. Motorists can expect delays of up to 20 minutes at each of the major intersections. CHP officers will accompany the cyclists on motorcycles.

Motorists are urged to drive with caution and follow directions of the South Lake Tahoe Police Department, El Dorado County Sheriff, Truckee Police Department and CHP officers, as well as race officials as the race passes by. Times for the Amgen Tour of California race are approximate, based on average speeds of the peloton and are subject to change.

For a complete calendar of Tahoe’s 10-Day Countown, events leading up to the race (May 5-14), as well as activities during Stage 1 (May 15) and Stage 2 (May 16), click here.

Lake Tahoe is recognized for several annual summer biking events. America’s Most Beautiful Bike Ride has participants circumnavigate the Lake the first weekend in June. Another chance to circle Tahoe’s 72-mile shoreline is during the annual Tour de Tahoe Bike Big Blue Race in mid-September. Late September brings the Tahoe Century Ride, which starts and finishes at Squaw Valley and features scenic routes and challenging hill climbs.

The annual Lake Tahoe Marathon Week offers a bike race around Tahoe’s shoreline the end of September. Furthermore, the annual Death Ride course covers five High Sierra passes that includes both sides of Monitor and Ebbetts Pass, Carson Pass and Turtle Rock Park, north of Markleeville. Tour de Nez offers significant professional stage races in the country taking place in Nevada and California; the cities of Reno and Truckee, along the shores of Lake Tahoe, and up the mountains surrounding the resort at Northstar-at-Tahoe every June.


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On your “Must Not Miss” list, is the popular Downtown Wine Walk – held the First Saturday of every month from 1- 5pm. For just $10 (which supports the Downtown Business Association you’ll receive a commemorative wine glass and endless reasons to sip, stroll, and shop, the afternoon away, through Historic Downtown Carson City. Bring your wine walk glass with the Carson City Logo on it and pay only $8. Don't forget the after Wine Walk raffle prize party, 5:00pm, at the Cabaret Lounge, Carson Nugget Casino!

Tickets can be purchased at Bella Fiora Wines, Cactus Jack’s, Carson Jewelry & Loan, Carson Nugget, and Horseshoe Club, where you will receive hand stamps, glasses, and maps.

Sponsored by the Carson City Downtown Business Association, our goal is to carry on a local tradition, hosting an event which showcases a monthly Downtown celebration. It’s a Saturday stroll with a glass of wine through historic downtown Carson City where boutiques, local shops, galleries, restaurants and casinos, pull out all the stops to awaken your taste buds and tantalize your senses... experience a Downtown taste sensation!.

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UPDATE 6PM: Two people were taken to the hospital for non-life threatening injuries in a four-vehicle accident this afternoon at the intersection of Fairview and South Carson streets in Carson City, law officers said. The Nevada Highway Patrol is handling the investigation and thus far there have been no arrests.

The accident was called into dispatch at 4:21 p.m. and caused significant backup of vehicle traffic in both directions of Carson Street. As of 6 p.m. dispatch reports the northbound lane should be opening soon.

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Waves that would do Oahu's famous north shore proud could likely be expected at Lake Tahoe during an epic winter storm, scientists conclude in new research.

Winds and storms often push Tahoe's azure waters into sizable waves several feet high that hammer the landmark alpine lake's shoreline in a seascape-like scene.

An 83-year-old woman died in Saturday morning's fatal single vehicle rollover at Highway 50 East and Nye Lane in Carson City, a Nevada Highway Patrol trooper said. The driver of the vehicle, an adult man, was taken to the hospital with injuries. His condition is unknown at this time.

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UPDATE: Nevada Highway Patrol reports at least one person has died in this morning's single vehicle rollover accident on Highway 50 and East Nye Lane in Carson City.

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A Carson City firefighters have responded to an accident near the intersection of Highway 50 East and Nye Lane, where a small white SUV hit a drainage ditch and flipped several times.

The Carson City Sheriff’s Office held a second pedestrian crosswalk operation Friday with 43 citations issued, the majority being for failing to stop for a pedestrian in a crosswalk, said Sgt. Scott McDaniel.

Although the number of citations issued was down from a similar operation held earlier this month in which 50 motorists were cited, the amount of stops shows motorists still need to do more as drivers to prevent pedestrian accidents involving vehicles, said McDaniel.

The operation was held on north Carson Street at Bath Street and then at Telegraph and Carson Street.

HotSpot Yoga Studio and Fitness Defined will celebrate their grand opening Saturday, Sept. 6 with ample, healthy activities planned, and a food drive for the Ron Wood Family Resource Center.

Festivities will run from 4 p.m to 8 p.m., with raffle drawings at 6 p.m. Free yoga classes will be held at 8 and 9:30 a.m., 4:30 and 6:30 p.m., to introduce this fantastic new health opportunity right here in Carson City. HotSpot Yoga is located inside Fitness Defined Personal Training, 195 E Winnie Lane, Carson City.

Family time is around the bend in Carson City as Labor Day weekend arrives. The 1905 Steam Locomotive No. 25 highlights the Labor Day weekend celebration at the Nevada State Railroad Museum in Carson City. The historic Virginia and Truckee train will carry passengers on 30-minute trips departing every 45 minutes from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday through Monday, Aug. 30 through Sept. 1.

The museum’s Jacobsen Interpretive Center will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Labor Day weekend looks to have some wind with it at least through Saturday for Carson City and Lake Tahoe. Low humidity and gusty winds has prompted a Red Flag Warning through at least Saturday for Carson City, the western Nevada Sierra front and central Nevada basin, according to the National Weather Service.

Time to lace up the jogging shoes and strut with the pooches Saturday, Sept. 20 in Carson City. It's the third annual Carson Animal Services Initiative's 5K9 fun run/walk at Riverview Park on East Fifth Street in Carson City.

The fundraising event is a great way for families to show off their pets while giving them some exercise too. Awards will be given to the 1st place male and female K9 finishers. Every participant receives a free gift.

Check-in time is between 8:15 - 8:45 a.m. with the run beginning at 9 a.m. Pre-registration is encouraged and discounted fees are offered.

The Brewery Arts Center has announced that the organization is going through a reorganization and has let go its professional staff, but will continue to operate its current programs with help from volunteers.

The following statement was posted on the organization's website:

Raul Garcia entered a guilty plea today in Carson City District Court in the April 6, 2013 murder of Nevada's chief insurance examiner.

Garcia was arrested in connection with the beating death of William McCune, 62, at his apartment in Carson City. Three other co-defendants — Makyla Blackmore, Anthony Elliott and Michael Evans — pled guilty to lesser charges in October. Blackmore and Evans had agreed to testify against Garcia had it gone to trial.

With the Burning Man counterculture festival taking place this week on the Black Rock Playa, many local artists are taking part in the event. Jake Smith of Carson City returns for a fourth time and talks about the project he's worked on for the festival.

Several local churches will be uniting together tonight to worship and pray for Carson City. The event, called "Engage" begins at 7 p.m. tonight, Friday, August 29, at the Carson City Community Center.

Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. and several local ministries will be on hand to share the work that is being done in our community. This is the third Engage event in Carson City and momentum has continued to grow with each event.

This week on Women to Women is Jo Etta Brown, executive vice president of the Alliance for Retired Americans.

In its third season, Women to Women Nevada, hosted by Carol Paz of Carson City, is televised on Charter Media every Thursday at 7 p.m. on Channel 190 in Carson City, Gardnerville, Dayton, Reno, Sparks, Fernley, Fallon and Lake Tahoe. The program also airs Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays at 8-8:30 p.m. and on Sundays from 11:30 a.m. to noon. Episodes also appear every Friday on Carson Now.

From 120 members in 2012 to 180 in 2014, the University of Nevada, Reno has seen its marching band, the “Pride of the Sierra,” grow in numbers, support and pride.

Kicking off during Saturday’s Wolf Pack football game against Southern Utah, Greater Nevada Credit Union continues its fundraising campaign, “It’s Time to Support the Band.”

An 18-year-old Carson City man was arrested Thursday, 9:55 a.m. in the 1600 block of East Fifth Street on five misdemeanor charges, including driving under the influence of marijuana, following a traffic stop, a Carson City sheriff’s deputy said.

According to the arrest report, an officer stopped the man for failing to maintain a lane of travel westbound on Fifth Street from the roundabout. During the traffic stop the officer detected an odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle.

UPDATE: Fire at Hells Bells and Fifth Street in Carson City Thursday night was reported extinguished at 9:04 p.m.
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Carson City firefighters were called Thursday night to a brush fire in the area of Fifth Street and Hells Bells. The fire was reported at 8:29 p.m. Arriving first responders, including Carson City sheriff's deputies, said smoke was coming from the fire, reported to be about 30 feet by 30 feet in size. It was reported under control to dispatch at 8:43 p.m.

New and returning Western Nevada College students were treated to a barbecue lunch Thursday, an annual Carson City event hosted by the Associated Students of Western Nevada College. WNC officials report a significant increase in full-time student enrollment, with more than 4,000 total students registered this semester.

Carson High School faculty and staff accepted the Ice Bucket Challenge for ALS from Douglas High on Aug. 28, 2014 and extended a challenge to Carson Middle School, Eagle Valley and Pioneer High. Water courtesy of Cinderlite Trucking.

To kick off the new school year, Carson City 4-H will participate in the annual 4-H National Science Experiment. This year’s project revolves around the popular program, “Rockets to the Rescue” where youth will be tasked with one mission.

Two sustained minor injuries in a helicopter crash Thursday afternoon south of Gardnerville, according to the Douglas County Sheriff's Office.

Deputies were notified at 4:15 p.m. that a helicopter had crash landed near the Horsebend area and that the occupants had already arrived at the hospital, said Sgt. Pat Brooks.