Adventuretown, U.S.A.

Welcome to this week’s Reno News & Review.

We’ve got an adventure guide going this week. When the RSCVA started its new marketing push to make Reno “Adventureland Central,” I was pretty skeptical. The idea kind of reminded me of that half-baked butler they had the search for a few years ago. But there’s something I like about the regional marketing potential of this America’s Adventure Place thing.

First off, I like the ease with which the new campaign segues into the old one of promoting gambling. Anyone who’s spent any time in a casino knows that the very foundation for gambling is the rush, the adrenaline, a gambler feels when he or she has something of value on the line. In essence, “adventure” and the physical reaction to it is the one thing chainsmoking video poker players and backcountry extreme skiers have in common.

There is no shortage of adventure around here. You don’t have to be a skier or even an extreme sports enthusiast. Have you tried to merge onto the northbound lane of 395 from 80 East at about 5:15 p.m. lately?

Adventure? This week, the 15-and-a-half-year-old young man I live with got his learner’s permit. His first time behind the wheel, he took me for a drive down the neighborhood sidewalk. You should see the tire tracks. I wish I had a photo of that first couple and their dog that we passed. They were probably surprised their Sunday afternoon walk turned into an adventure.

You don’t think fear of taking out the neighbor’s puppy will send the old pump off the charts? Try this: After four months on the Atkins diet, go to P.J.’s on Wells Avenue lunch, order the super-sized Cobb salad and fasten your seatbelt.

Reason to vote No. 20: People you vote for or ignore make decisions about things like the health insurance you’ll need when you start BASE jumping. Think universal health coverage should be a priority? Tell your candidates and legislators, by voting.