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Nevada City/Grass Valley,


Photo of Nevada Country Fairgrounds in Nevada City and Grass Valley, in the Gold Country of Northern California

Photo above: Gentle Giant at the Nevada County Fairgrounds










Gold Rush

Nevada City

Grass Valley

Truckee and Rough & Ready

Famous Characters



Mountain Biking

Places to Swim

Calendar of Events

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Imaginarium of Nevada County

112 Nevada City Highway, Nevada City, California 95959.
Exit Ridge Rd. off of highway 49 and turn left on to Nevada City highway.
The Imaginarium of Nevada County is an interactive science center. Modeled after the San Francisco Exploratorium, it is a resource for hands-on science, nature, and technology experiences for local residents and visitors to our community.

The Imaginarium is in the beautifully renovated Armory building. On weekdays, the Imaginarium is available for classroom teachers and students. After school, high school and college students, educators, and mentors are encouraged to use the facility.

On weekends, residents and visitors to the community may experience learning family activity. All visitors to the Imaginarium are greeted by trained docents from the community.

Call 530-478-6400 ext. 231 for information

Nevada City Carriage Company

17790 Cooper Road,
(916) 265-8778...
Carriage rides run everyday during the summer and partial schedules the rest of the year. The carriages arrive and depart from in front of the Buttonworks or the National Hotel. During the evening, they arrive and depart from in front of Friar Tuck's Restaurant. Look for `Carriage for Hire sign to find location for arrivals and departures.

The carriage company uses only registered Percheron Draft horses to pull the carriages in town. Dapple grey and black beauties have been selected for their strength, willingness to work, and docile temperament. In addition to toting carriages, they are used for farming, breeding, and hauling logs out of the forest.

Nevada City Walking Tour

South Yuba Canal Building, Ott's Assay Office
The oldest business buildings in Nevada City. the South Yuba Canal Building (1855), California historical Landmark (CHL), N. 832 was first a drugs store and then offices for the state's largest water system. It now houses the Chamber of Commerce. Ott's (1857) is where James J. Ott assayed ore samples in that led to the famous Comstock Lode silver rush in Nevada.

Firehouse No. 1
One of the most photographed buildings in the Gold Country. The Victorian bell tower and gingerbread trim were added later to this 1861 building which housed Nevada Hose Company No. 1. Now a museum.

The National Hotel
The state's oldest, continuously operating hotel consists of four buildings constructed in 1854 and 1856-57. An excellent representation of the early-day hostelry, the National offers lodging with old-fashioned hospitality.

The Nevada Theatre
This 1865 brick structure is the oldest building in the state erected as a theatre. Today it provides a stage for Northern California's finest performing arts groups, concerts and other activities.

Firehouse No. 2 Built in 1861, this venerable brick firehouse near the top of Broad Street housed one of Nevada City's first volunteer fire companies. It is owned by the city and still used as a firehouse.

Miners Foundry Cultural Center
Now a community center, the foundry, built in 1856, contributed technology for mining, skiing, and other industries. The Pelton Wheel was built here in 1878. Several special events each year and home to non-profit radio KVMR, 89.5 FM.

Nevada City Winery
The Nevada City area is gaining a wide reputation for its excellent wines. The award-winning winery is located in the old tin building at Miners Foundry. Tasting and sales available.

Sargent House
Built in 1856 by civic leader and former U.S. Senator Aaron A. Sargent, this carefully restored and landscaped home is one of the most viewed in town . Now a bed and breakfast inn.

The Gault Bridge
This historic bridge across Deer Creek dates to 1908 and is named after a former mayor. The bridge replaced an 1862 suspension bridge built by Andrew Hallidie, father of San Francisco's cable cars.

Nevada County Courthouse
Nevada County justice has been dispensed here since 1855. The original courthouse burned in 1856, was rebuilt by 1864 and remodeled in 1937. The Courthouse Annex was completed in 1964. See the Butterfly Collection in the main hall.

Gold Panning Tours

Holiday Lodge, 1221 E. Main Street, Grass Valley,
(916) 273-4406
...Minimum four persons. Advance notice requests. Departure time 9:30 a.m. (preferred)
...Based on availability of guide...Transportation, equipment, and the river provided.

Gold Panning Bridgeport: Old Hwy. 20 out of Grass Valley to picturesque Bitney Springs Road, right to Pleasant Valley Road, right to park.
Site includes longest single span covered bridge in existence, ranger station. Gold panning tours available. Hands and pans only.
For more info, contact (530) 432-2546.

Town of Washington: East of Nevada City off Hwy. 20.
Pan at local camp grounds, Tahoe National Forest (TNF) Keleher Picnic Area on Yuba River two miles upstream from town, TNF Quartz Picnic Area further up stream.
Information sheets available at TNF, 631 Coyote St., Nevada City, CA 95959; (530) 265-4531.

Additional Information: More serious miners, contact Bureau of Land Management, 63 Natomas St., Folsom, CA 95630; (916) 985-4474.

California State Historical Landmarks
  • #134, Donner Monument, Truckee
  • #247, The World's First Long-Distance Telephone Line, French Corral
  • #292, Home of Lola Montez, Grass Valley
  • #293, Home of Lotta Crabtree, Grass Valley
  • #294, The Little Town of Rough and Ready
  • #297, Site of One of the First Discoveries of Quartz gold in California, Grass Valley
  • #298, Empire Mine, Grass Valley,
  • #390, Bridgeport (Nyes Crossing) Covered Bridge, near French Corral
  • #628, Alpha Hydraulic Diggings, Omega Hydraulic Diggings and Townsite, near Washington
  • #629, Alpha Hydraulic Diggings, Omega Hydraulic Diggings and Townsite neat Washington
  • #799, Overland Emigrant Trail, near Grass Valley
  • #832, South Yuba Canal Office, Nevada City
  • #843, North Star Mine Powerhouse, Grass Valley
  • #852, North Bloomfield Mine and Gravel, near Nevada City
  • #855, Mount Saint Mary's Convent and Academy, Grass Valley
  • #863, Nevada Theatre, Nevada City
  • #899, National Hotel, Nevada City
  • #914, Holbrook Hotel, Grass Valley
  • #1012, First manufacturing Site of the Pelton Water Wheel, Nevada City
  • #780-6, First Transcontinental Railroad -- Truckee
Bridgeport Covered Bridge

Longest Single Span Wood Arch Bridge Built in 1862
Bridgeport is one of only 10 covered bridges remaining in California. The bridge is in very good condition considering its age. Built in 1862, at 251 feet, it is the longest single span covered bridge in the United States.

The type of construction is unique, a Howe truss with an auxiliary Burr arch. The arch is visible from the outside as well as the inside, consisting of two five by fourteen inch timbers bolted together, squeezing between them the members of the truss. This combination, made from local Douglas Fir, and resting on massive granite blocks, endured the weight of a 13 ton tractor without excessive strain.

Today the bridge is rated at 3 tons because of the age of the timber. The unique design seems to have been taken from a plan or design prepared by Theodore Burr for a bridge constructed in 1804, across the Hudson River and patented in 1817.

The Sugar Pine shake roofing and sides not only protect the timber from the weather, but contribute an air of historic antiquity which attracts many visitors to see and photograph it.

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