In the past few years, a number of national chains have closed in the Truckee Meadows. But we've also started to see many local restaurants grow.
Peg's Glorified Ham n Eggs has been a local family-owned restaurant since 1999.
The latest location opened, Wednesday, in a building once occupied by a Baja Fresh, in Sparks on Prater Way.
"You see all the chains everywhere and I think when people come to Peg's and eat here, they know it's something special," owner Fred Lee said. "It's cooked fresh. It's made by hand."
The Lee family admits expansion hasn't been easy during this economic climate, saying every dollar counts.
But they say they have weathered the storm and the timing is good for growth.
"Right now, we're seeing a little uptick in our business and I think that has to do with the economy getting better," Lee said. "So, we have a lot of confidence that it's only going to get better and better. So, that's why we're in expansion mode."
Squeeze In, in south Reno, opened about a year ago, with their fourth location opening in Sparks, a month ago.
The restaurant's co-owner, Shila Morris, says more people are trying to keep their money in the Truckee Meadows.
"I think local communities are really excited about refocusing on local businesses that give back to their community and keep things here, in the community," Morris said.
In fact, Squeeze In buys from local vendors and they donate to local charities and schools.
"As long as your bills are paid and you stay consistent, you can expand and you really let people know you care," Morris said. "They're not buying us a vacation house. They're sending my kids to school."
BJ's Nevada Barbecue Company is expanding in a different way, buying a former IHOP restaurant, rather than leasing.
They moved into the new location, in April, tripling the amount of seating space. "It's nice to have something that's yours," Kelly Samsel said. "We can do whatever we want here. We're responsible for everything and the market's good. It was the right thing to do."
Samsel is the restaurant's general manager and says they have also expanded by adding a breakfast menu.
She says it's made a huge impact.
"They definitely want to go where they're guaranteed to get a good meal, to be full, and to make sure they're getting their money's worth," Samsel said.
Samsel says their catering was almost non-existent during the recession.
But now, they've been busy on a consistent basis, as the economy continues to recover.
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