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room full of stuffed animals and plants

Local Business Review: Natural Selection

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Off of St Lawrence Avenue in the heart of Midtown you’ll find Natural Selection, an eclectic, whacky boutique where you can find anything from rare plant species to animal skeletons. The store has been open for a little over four years now and is a great place to find unusual gifts or expand your house plant collection.

Upon walking in you’ll find exotic taxidermied animal heads hung on every wall, vibrant green plants swinging from the ceiling, and a collection of books sitting on the center table. If you’re looking to spruce up your college apartment, you can buy succulents of all shapes and colors for $5. Among other eccentric store items you’ll find rabbit foot key chains, geodes, and various animal bones for just a buck. Natural Selection takes pride in being, well, all natural. Everything you see in store is the real deal.


Local Business Review: Holey Schmidt Donuts

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One of the newest donut shops in Reno is so sweet, it makes visitors feel like they’re on a sugar rush. As if the Discovery Museum located in downtown Reno wasn’t already fun enough, the addition of Holey Schmidt Donuts this past February makes for a great attraction. Owners Galen and Cadi Schmidt offer a wide variety of flavors, ranging from the basic chocolate sprinkle to the ultimate throwback for 90’s kids: the cosmic brownie. This hip, youthful shop located in Midtown is visited by children and adults alike. With art on the walls proclaiming to “Keep Reno Sweet,” it helps the shop connect with prideful Nevadans and those looking for a cheat day indulgence.

While the daring may be drawn to the donuts loaded with candy and cookie crumbles, there’s no shame in choosing the classics. Old fashioned and chocolate sprinkles are seen as a go-to. The shop also sells a pretty impressive range of coffee and usually carries vegan donuts for the health-conscious on Tuesdays.

Overall, Holey Schmidt is known for its fun name, active presence on social media, and its very rich and flavorful donuts. They often restock throughout the day, and the staff does it pretty quickly based on what’s popular.

The Jungle Cafe

Local Business Review: Java Jungle

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In the depths of downtown in the Riverwalk District, there stands a quaint little coffee house that goes by Java Jungle, or more recently named “The Jungle.” The Jungle is a very trendy and open environment that allows anybody to come and sip coffee while enjoying the presence of the nearby river and downtown altogether.

In addition, The Jungle has a certain edge to it that makes it stand out from the other coffee shops in Reno, and that is at night it turns into a hip dive bar and serves alcohol. In 2013, Jungle Vino and Java Jungle joined forces and merged their companies with the idea that cocktails and wine can also bring people together the same way coffee does.

The Jungle offers wine tastings paired with live music and gourmet food for a better coffee shop experience. The Barroon is a new addition to The Jungle which has the goal of capturing presence in an intimate setting. The Barroon holds the wine tastings and other special events like open mic night every Monday. Next time you are thinking of hitting downtown and going to your normal bars, try The Jungle for a different, more enriching kind of night.