El Reno is located in the heart of Oklahoma, where Interstate 40, historic Route 66 and the Chisholm Trail all meet. The prairie was Cheyenne and Arapaho country when Fort Reno was built to keep peace on the plains. Constructed in 1874 and first commanded by General Philip Sheridan, Fort Reno was named in honor of his friend, Gen. Jesse L. Reno, who was killed in the Civil War. With the run of 1889 a town was born and named Reno City. El Reno was originally located about five miles (8 km) north of its present location, on the banks of the North Canadian River, bearing the name Reno City (which caused its mail to get mixed up with mail for Reno, Nevada). After the second time the town flooded, it was moved to its present location and changed its name to El Reno.
El Reno is easily accessible from three major highways and only a short 25 minute commute to the heart of Oklahoma City, which has helped to nurture a steady stream of new businesses and events for our community. With a rich tribal and military history, Route 66, beloved onion burgers and annual events that celebrate them all, El Reno has a unique past and many avenues of opportunity for the future. It’s no wonder we are so proud of our roots (and our routes).