Knowing Nevada: 'Last Chance Joe' is finally restored

Last Chance Joe stands tall in front of the Sparks Heritage Museum at Victorian Square.

Those who frequent Victorian Square in Sparks, NV can now see the newly restored 'Last Chance Joe' statue that stands at thirty-six feet tall. 'Joe' originally could be found in front of the Nugget Hotel and Casino from 1955 to 2014.

Once the giant relic was removed from the hotel property, a local museum took it upon themselves to bring him back to life.

The Sparks Heritage Museum asked for donations to resurrect and restore the piece of history once again. Lucky for them, the community rallied together to come up with the necessary funds to secure a location, hire painters through Crown Painting Inc., and fix the steel frame that holds him all together.

"This really was a community effort," said Tandy Gach, Manager of the museum. "I don't think we could've done it without the thoughtful donations and effort of local businesses."

Many visitors and locals consider 'Joe' to be an iconic nod to the classic prospector of the West. Now that the painting is done, he will require some upkeep and the Museum will do what it can to ensure he is taken care of in the form of personal donations and the Sparks Heritage License Plate through the Department of Motor Vehicles.

"Now that he is a registered artifact through the museum, visitors and locals alike need to treat him with respect he deserves," said Dick Simmons, Director for the museum.

You can donate to 'Last Chance Joe' through the The Sparks Heritage Museum located at 814 Victorian Ave. Sparks, NV 89431 or at

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