The land we love the best |

The land we love the best

Anyone who was a school child in Nevada during the 1960s remembers when Halloween suddenly became a day off.

While the reason for all that was pretty obvious to those who grew up in Western Nevada, in the south most grade-schoolers just took it for granted that Halloween was a school holiday.

It has been 19 years since the Legislature made Nevada Day a three-day weekend in order to encourage participation in the parade, held the last Saturday of October.

This year new Nevada Day and old Nevada Day are as far apart as they can be on the calendar. That means next year the parade will actually fall on Nevada Day for the first time since 2015.

We get why Nevada Day was moved to a three-day weekend, but we always kind of liked that the holiday and the parade could show up just about any day of the week.

That level of surprise mirrored Nevada’s statehood, which was a longshot at best.

There was a time when a popular entry in the parade was a re-creation of the longest telegram ever sent, which happened to be the Nevada Constitution, converted into dots and dashes and then “reconstituted” into the document approved by Congress.

Nevada’s birthday is very near Election Day because during the Civil War, Abe Lincoln was running for re-election and thought he would need the electoral votes against Democrat Gen. George McClellan. He didn’t, but the Silver State was part of the union, with another nickname, Battle born.

We take what might be construed as perverse pride in our Nevada heritage, due in part to our unlikely statehood.

And when people couldn’t find silver or gold in the vastness that is the Nevada outback, they found ways of bringing it here by becoming a tax haven and legalizing gambling.

Nevada will always be the land we love the best.