The 113th annual Labor Day Weekend celebration in Pioche was once again loaded with events.
This year’s theme was “The Wild West is Calling.” The Labor Day Committee worked over the last 12 months to ensure there was something planned for everyone. From a golf tournament, a chalk art contest, and softball, to a street dance and many other activities held from Aug. 31 to Sept. 1, attendees had a variety of activities from which to choose.
Thompson’s Opera House held an open house and live entertainment over the weekend.
“The turnout has been great,” said opera house director Leslie Derkovitz. The Nevada Archaeology and Ghost Town Presentation kicked off the weekend at the venue. Later, visitors took in music from the Nevada Old Time Fiddlers, as well as magic and comedy performer Tim Smallwood. Then on Saturday night, local students performed the “Old West Saloon Show.” The skit was directed by local high school drama teacher Jacob Lester, who explained, “The skit is based on real people, Georgiana and Morgan Courtney, and true events from the heyday of Pioche.”
Actors held signs just like women would have done in the 1870s in Pioche when a great temperance movement swept the unruly town.
Admission was free and the lively skit was followed by the showing of a 1934 John Wayne movie, “The Man From Utah.” The film features Pioche and is accurately named because Pioche used to belong to Utah territory, before Nevada and Utah became official states.
Parades were held Saturday night and Monday morning and included various float entries. The theme was “Your Favorite Time of Year.” The $700 grand prize, with 366 points, was “Santa’s Gone Fishing,” by Tyson and Ashley Hollis.
Night parade first prize of $400 was “Nightmare before Christmas,” by the Treasure Hill Gang. Second prize of $300 was “It’s The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown,” by the Bortman Family.
The Monday parade first prize of $300 was “We love Halloween” by Moments and Milestones Photography by Janine and The Overland Hotel & Saloon.
The parade’s second prize of $200 was “The Haunted Graveyard,” by The Alamo Club.
Chalk art was created by children and adults at the old elementary school.The adult first prize was awarded to Charlotte Fox, of Las Vegas. Second prize went to Cami Wadsworth, of Pioche. Third prize was Logan Bey, of Las Vegas. In the teen division, first place went to Abigail Frehner, of Panaca. Second prize went to Nathanael, Lincoln, and Gareth Frehner, of Panaca, and third place was Ronni Gibbs, of Las Vegas.
The judges also gave an honorable mention to Berkley Lewis.
In the child division, first place went to Paige Hansen, of Pioche. The second place winner was Izzy Lewis, of Pioche, and third place was David Livreri, with an honorable mention going to Ashlyn Lewis, of Pioche.
The best theme was awarded to Samantha and Alex Amor.
Julia Baldwin won the raffle’s grand prize of a $500 Home Depot gift card. Evan Schimbeck won a $200 Amazon gift card. Lorena Stever won a forty- inch Samsung Smart TV, and Pauline S. won a quilt.
Labor Day Committee Chairman Kristina Lloyd expressed thanks to all of the volunteers who helped make the celebration possible.
Lloyd has been volunteering with the committee for four years. She said, “Labor Day weekend was a big success, as usual. Next year will be my last year and maybe a few members will be leaving the committee as well. So we will need some new volunteers for the Labor Day committee for the 2020 year.”
The committee is already planning next year’s celebration, which holds additional significance because it is also the town’s one hundred and fiftieth birthday.
With planning beginning at least a year in advance, being on the committee requires a big commitment of personal time. Thus, when committee members resign they leave big shoes to fill. Anyone who is interested or has questions related to the planning of Labor Day festivities should contact the Chamber of Commerce at (775) 962-1585.