Tagged as “The Roast of the Town,” Sheep Dip 48 will feature songs, dances and skits that poke fun at the newsmakers of the past year and all that has gone wrong in Reno and across Nevada.
“Our politicians … always give us so much material that cutting it down to a two-hour show is a challenge,” deadpanned Roger Diez, Sheep Dip Inc. board president.
The name of the show is derived from a Basque sheepherder practice used to cleanse wool.
“We dip in the satirical vat of Sheep Dip to cleanse them of their past deeds,” the show’s website, www.sheepdipshow.com, states, “so that they may go right back and be foolish again.”
Gov. Brian Sandoval will open this year’s show with a hilarious video, with skits to follow about the state of higher education (“The Life of Brian”), the controversial black bear hunt and the STAR bonds owed to the city of Sparks (“Star Bond Wars”). In addition, the notorious Shaft award will handed out, with all due respect, to the year’s biggest buffoon.
Hot August Nights received the inglorious honor last year for its rather inept handling of a proposal to move the classic car rally out of Reno.
In its long, illustrious run, Sheep Dip has matured even while the format has remained the same.
“It’s evolved as the city grew,” said Ron Smith, who has participated in every show from the very beginning.
The show in many ways has become a kind of institution and part of the cultural fabric of northern Nevada.
Whenever politicians make a fool of themselves, people say, “That will be in Sheep Dip,” Smith said.
This year’s show promises to be the best yet, with actress Dawn Wells, a Reno native who played Mary Ann on “Gilligan’s Island,” starring as Sarah Palin in a skit entitled, “History’s Mysteries Made Simple.”
Sheep Dip is a nonprofit organization that raises funds for local charities. In the show’s 47-year history, more than $400,000 has been raised for education, arts and other community charitable groups.
This year the show will benefit CARE Chest of Sierra Nevada, Evelyn Mount Community Outreach and the Northern Nevada Children’s Cancer Foundation.
Sheep Dip begins at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday in the Celebrity Showroom at John Ascuaga’s Nugget. Tickets cost $35 and can be purchased online at www.janugget.com/entertainment/sheep-dip.asp or by calling 356-3300.