Following a successful launch in 2022, Wind Down Wednesdays are back at Heritage Park starting May 10.
Wind Down Wednesdays are the brainchild of CV Flyte (cvflyte.com) owners and best friends Shannon Allen and Kylie Koerner. The women were both born and raised in the Carson Valley and share a deep affection for the place they call home.
Allen and Koerner came up with the idea for a mobile bar as a way to bring people together, and they launched their business in 2020. Koerner said that very quickly, their venture turned into “so much more.”
Before their retro mobile bar trailer was even complete, the duo approached Main Street Gardnerville (mainstreetgardnerville.org) Program Director Jen Nalder with a proposal to host a social event “outside, in one of the most gorgeous parks in the community.” They envisioned a celebration that included food, drinks, fun, and entertainment; a welcoming place for people to meet mid-week and relax.
After a presentation to the Board of Directors, the pieces for Wind Down Wednesdays quickly fell into place, with CV Flyte and Main Street Gardnerville acting as co-sponsors of the event. The first Wind Down Wednesday took place in May 2022, and additional events were held monthly through October.
Koerner said they weren’t sure what to expect at that inaugural event, but organizers knew they were onto something after all seven food truck vendors sold out within the first two hours. People were happy to be out and about, adults mingled as children laughed and played in the park, and there was nary a cellphone to be seen. High attendance numbers also carried over to other businesses and bolstered activity in the downtown corridor.
Koerner calls this year’s launch of Wind Down Wednesdays “the official kickoff to summer.” The Cultural Arts Foundation of Douglas County (cafdc.com) schedules musical talent for each event, with acts announced a couple of weeks prior to each WDW. May 10 features Keith Alan Barnett and the Lonesome Polecat Band, who bring a blend of country and rock to the festivities.
The Douglas High School Show Band, whose musicians are fundraising to help cover their travel costs to Washington DC later this month, will play as the opening act. The Show Band earned the honor of participating in the 2023 Memorial Day Parade, which has expected attendance of 250,000 people.
A number of food trucks will be onsite at WDW, including Hungry Hearts and Valley Eats. The food truck lineup will vary each month with a blend of new and existing favorites.
WDWs are held monthly from 4-8 p.m. at Heritage Park, 1447 Courthouse Alley in Gardnerville. Events are scheduled May 10, June 21, July 26, August 23, and September 27. The October WDW date is yet to be determined.
“It’s been a long winter for all of us, and we are really excited to be back in the community,” said Koerner. “Let’s get out there and enjoy each other again.”