Mike Van Houten on Housing and Developments

Mike Van Houten on Housing and Developments

June 8, 2021

Downtown Makeover is one of the longest running blogs in Reno, reporting largely on development projects in and around Downtown Reno. Mike Van Houten has been closely tracking developers and their projects for 15 years, publishing everything from permits to concept drawings to photos of new housing developments as they grow.

Conor and Mike discuss the benefits of an urban lifestyle and downtown Reno's growth towards urban living, how he uses his site to break the reputation of Downtown Reno as full of shuttered casinos, ideas for controlling the ever-increasing rents in town, the false narrative of evil developers vs. inflexible NIMBYs, how construction costs shape what is built, and much more!

Mike also gives some background and his views on several of the most significant (and sometimes controversial) developments currently in the works in Reno, including the Reno Experience District in Midtown, a brand new residential project in the ballpark area, the Jacob's Entertainment "Neon Line" in the NW Quadrant, and the hotly debated 34-unit building currently under construction on Riverside Drive in the heart of the Powning Historic District. 

Thank you for listening!


Check out Downtown Makeover at

Grant Denton on Addiction, Karma Box, and Safe Camps

Grant Denton on Addiction, Karma Box, and Safe Camps

June 1, 2021

Rising homelessness has become a major topic in Reno in recent years, with a massive increase during the pandemic. A large new shelter, the NV Cares campus, is opening in phases and will include a safe camping area, there's conflict around the disbandment of existing encampments, and the conversation continues over the best ways to help bring people from homelessness to stability and growth.

In this episode, Conor is joined by Grant Denton, founder of the Karma Box project, a "little free library" mutual aid model that helps the community directly provide food and essential items for those in need in their neighborhood. Grant shares his own personal story of overcoming addiction and homelessness, and what drives him to give back to the community now. 

Conor and Grant also discuss the importance of providing harm reduction resources alongside support and programs to help people stabilize and thrive, the role of safe camps in solving some of the problems of existing encampments, the psychology of drive and purpose and their place in helping people have a sense of control over their own lives, and so much more.

Thank you so much for listening, and I encourage you to support local organizations that are providing services of any kind to feed, clothe, and house the people who live in our city. I would like to use my social media to highlight organizations that are doing good work so please share with me at or leave a comment on the Renoites Facebook page!

Reno Burrito Project


Ky Plaskon on Bikes and Scooters in Reno

Ky Plaskon on Bikes and Scooters in Reno

May 25, 2021

This week on the show, Conor is joined by Ky Plaskon, President of the Truckee Meadows Bicycle Alliance. Ky has been riding bikes his entire life and is now leading TMBA in advocating for better bike and multi-modal infrastructure in Reno.

Conor and Ky talk about the near future of e-bike and scooter sharing in Reno, a major bike infrastructure project along Center Street that needs your help, why most people's bikes never leave the garage and how to fix that, what to do with the flood of broken bikes from burning man every year, dealing with bike theft, and so much more!

Thanks as always for listening and sharing!

Be sure to follow TMBA to stay up to date!


Also mentioned in this episode:



Michael Moberly on Bars in Reno

Michael Moberly on Bars in Reno

May 18, 2021

This week on the podcast, Conor welcomes Michael Moberly, a spirits educator, bar consultant, writer, event planner and all-around bar industry expert who has been working in Reno's bar and spirits world since he was 19.

Conor and Michael talk about the history of Reno's bar scene and why bars have continued to be an important part of our city's culture, the economic challenges facing both bars and their employees, what makes a good bar, locals vs. tourists, summer events, and so much more!

Thank you so much for listening! If you enjoy the episode, please share!

Follow Michael on Instagram!

Michele McQuivey on Motherhood

Michele McQuivey on Motherhood

May 11, 2021

Happy Mother's Day! This week's guest on the podcast is Michele McQuivey, Conor's mom! We had a really good conversation about her life and what brought her to be a mom and raise a family in Reno, the differences in parenting over the years and generations, the value of family vacations, why having adult children is the best of both worlds, what role grandparents should play in parenting, and much much more!

Super extra special thank you to my mom for coming on the show even though podcasts are definitely not her thing normally, and also thanks to her for, you know... giving birth to me and raising me and always being supportive and making sure I've had a good life. My gratitude is immeasurable.

Kurt Thigpen on Washoe County Schools

Kurt Thigpen on Washoe County Schools

May 4, 2021

Trustee Kurt Thigpen joins Conor on the podcast this week to discuss his path to being elected to the Washoe County School District Board of Trustees last year, the issues that schools are facing right now in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, diversity and inclusion in schools, clearing up misconceptions about new curriculum (spoiler alert, it's not critical race theory!), school funding, and much more!

Thanks for listening! Education is a very important topic so if you have feedback, guest suggestions, or ideas for future episodes of Renoites, please let me know! My email address is

Keep up with what's happening in the school district and find your trustee's contact info at


Mark Kalin on Weird Reno and Magic

Mark Kalin on Weird Reno and Magic

April 27, 2021

Kalin and Jinger have been a duo of professional magicians based in Reno for decades, with projects ranging from their Vegas-style show Carnival of Wonders to the intimate Magic Underground Theater, and to huge success on Broadway and around the world with The Illusionists.

This week on the podcast, Mark Kalin joins Conor to discuss their newest project, Weird Reno- a walking tour featuring magic, comedy, and Reno's weird history.

Conor and Mark also talk about the art of magic and how it's changed since Mark started performing at 9 years old, the effect of television and the Internet on the magic industry, the reason the next major figure in magic will probably be a woman, and so much more!

Thanks for listening! Learn more about Weird Reno at


Haleigh Hoff on Weed, Blackbird, and Hoff Goods

Haleigh Hoff on Weed, Blackbird, and Hoff Goods

April 20, 2021

Happy 4/20! This week's episode is all about cannabis, with guest Haleigh Hoff. Conor and Haleigh talk about weed culture and how it has changed (and is still changing) since legalization, destigmatizing cannabis use, the weed delivery and technology company Blackbird, and Haleigh's own brand Hoff Goods! Plus some conversation on podcasting, healthy and unhealthy uses of social media, the challenges of marketing weed online, and so much more!

Check out Hal's podcast for Blackbird called "Weed Like to Talk" wherever you find podcasts! It's on all the major platforms including Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

And be sure to check out her store at


Oliver X on Artown and Arts in Reno

Oliver X on Artown and Arts in Reno

April 13, 2021

Artown is gearing up to prepare for this year in a new location at Rancho San Rafael, and this week on the podcast Oliver X from Artown joins Conor to talk about the plans for 2021, the development of Reno's art scene, Burning Man's influence on Reno as an arts city, murals and public art, and so much more!

For more information about Artown, be sure to visit

For walking tours of Reno's murals, visit ArtSpot Reno

And visit the Nevada Museum of Art!

Vickie Musni on DJ Trivia, Toastmasters, and Personalities

Vickie Musni on DJ Trivia, Toastmasters, and Personalities

April 6, 2021

In this week's episode of Renoites, Conor welcomes his boss and friend, Vickie Musni to the show!

Vickie, along with her husband Craig, have been operating DJ Trivia Nevada since 2013 and providing live hosted trivia in up to 21 bar and restaurant venues every week. Conor has been a trivia host with them since 2019.

Vickie and Conor discuss the win/win business model of DJ Trivia, the importance of supporting local businesses, Toastmasters and improving our communication skills, Vickie's experience as a certified personality trainer, and so so much more!

Thanks for listening!


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