How Preservation Supports Your Community

Preservation may be about the past, but historic and cultural places are important to Nevadans now. Places of historic and cultural significance are important pieces of Nevada’s communities, and advances sustainable economic development through retaining local identity, supporting heritage tourism, and promoting local and regional businesses. Activating historic places through creative business models, interpretive events, walking tours, and K-12 education programs can also give Nevadans the opportunity to keep their history alive and relevant to current and future generations.

Acting Locally

Preservation depends on people like you acting to preserve places important to Nevada and its communities. In fact, it is citizens like you, and your local government, who have the most power to preserve important places. But remember that you’re not alone! Check out these preservation partners who operate in Nevada to support historic preservation. Below are some suggestions for how you can become an active preservationist in your community.

Just Getting Started

  • Join your local historical society or preservation organization and support their education and outreach programs. Find out if your community has an historic preservation commission, and attend a meeting.
  • Learn about the history and culture of your community. Attend lectures or tours from local, regional, or state-wide organizations and read the latest books on Nevada’s history.
  • Visit an historic place or building in your area, and bring your friends and family. Take some photos and post them on your social media sites. Tell people about what you learned and liked about the place you visited. Not sure where to go? Travel Nevada can help you find a great place for your next adventure!
  • Give history and heritage-related gifts such as museum tickets, memberships, or gift shop items.
  • Shop at businesses located in historic buildings, or shop in Main Street communities in Nevada like Minden or Gardnerville

Ready for a Challenge?

  • Identify places in your community that are important, and nominate them for historic status in your local community’s historic register, the Nevada State Register of Historic Places, or the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Involve your neighbors, your friends and family, and young people in your community in preservation projects. Think about completing a photography project with your local history museum, planning and delivering a walking tour of an historic area in your town with your local historical society, or supporting a youth history event for kids in your community.
  • Advocate for preservation in your community through attending a meeting of your city council, board of supervisors, planning board, etc., and speaking in support of preservation concepts, programs, and projects.
  • Learn about the federal, state, and local laws that affect preservation in your community, including the National Historic Preservation Act, Chapters 381383, and 384 of the Nevada Revised Statutes, and local preservation ordinances in your own community. 

Preservation Champion

  • Join your local historic preservation commission, or the board of your local preservation non-profit organization and shape how your community preserves its heritage through advocacy, program and project development, and education.
  • Apply for a Historic Preservation Fund Subgrant or a grant from the Nevada Commission for Cultural Centers and Historic Preservation to support a project in your neighborhood, or work with a local non-profit or your local government to create project and apply for funding. (Note: To be eligible for grants awarded from the Nevada State Historic Preservation Office, applicants must be a 501(c)(3) non-profit or a local government).
  • Advocate to enhance preservation in your community by helping your municipality or county become a certified local government.
  • Build a web-based app or website in partnership with your local museum, preservation organization, or local government to raise awareness and support for places important in your community. Web apps like Reno Historical are excellent ways to engage and excite your neighbors about the places that matter to your town or city.