Once again, the downtown Reno sky will light up at the stroke of midnight, January 1.  The downtown hotels are paying $75,000 to put on an 11-minute fireworks show. 

"You get masses of people out on that street for that, and we've been doing it for so long that it's become a ritual to come out there and do it and also do a selfie under the arch," Rick Murdock, Vice President of Eldorado Resorts Reno, said.

Planning for the fireworks show starts several weeks ahead of time, when crews with Lantis Fireworks & Lasers get the proper permitting in place and book their hotel rooms.  It takes them about five days to get 2,000 pounds of explosives ready for the New Year's celebration.

"It's just a lot of labor to get the shells loaded in the tubes where they belong so that the show looks good," Bradley Colescott, Head Pyro for Lantis Fireworks & Lasers said. "It's a lot of work, but it's worth every minute."

They will shoot the fireworks off from two different roofs of the Silver Legacy and one atop Harrah's.  The process is high-tech, using a computer to launch and choreograph the show to music.

"Things have definitely changed," Colescott said. "In the old days, they would go out and light them with a road flare and that would be that. Now we definitely are a lot more advanced."
 

Thousands of people will line Virginia Street when the clock strikes midnight, and as Christmas guests check out of the hotels, New Year's revelers are checking in. 

"We're almost at capacity, but there's still some rooms left, but that's great because you want to have those rooms for the last-minute shoppers that want to come in."

The Silver Legacy, Eldorado and Circus Circus have a combined total of 4,108 rooms, and almost every bar and venue throughout the properties will have a New Year's party.  There are also many shows and concerts throughout the weekend. 

Jerome and Sophia Simon visit Reno every year.  The Monterey, Calif. residents are spending the final three days of 2017 in the Biggest Little City.

"This is the best place to go," Jerome Simon said. "This is our getaway."

"The people, the atmosphere, I couldn't put it no better," Sophia Simon said. "This is where I want to bring my 2018 in and let's leave 2017 behind us."

For many, that means heading outside to watch the fireworks.

"New Year's, Fourth of July, all those, I think they just make the holiday a lot better with fireworks," Colescott said.