The New York Times blog Opinionator just mocked East Coasterners for mispronouncing my home state:
[...] national broadcasters on election night who cannot pronounce Oregon (it’s like gun) or Nevada (it’s not Nev-odda) [...]
Even some of my Californian friends can't get this right. The Nevada Commission on Tourism has a logo (which was on BART ads & elsewhere) with a subtle hint to use the short-A: "nevăda". I was proud to see someone in the Wikipedia had called out non-Westerners for their "imagined pronunciation of the Spanish" (Boom!), & of George W. Bush's learned lesson - - from the Wikiepedia's Etymology and pronunciation for Nevada:
The name Nevada comes from the Spanish "Nevada" [neˈβaða], meaning "snowfall", after the Sierra Nevada ("snow-covered mountains") mountain range.
Most non-Westerners pronounce the name /nəˈvɑːdə/, with the /ɑː/ of "father" after the imagined pronunciation of the Spanish, which annoys locals. The most famous case of this was George W Bush's faux pas during his campaign for the 2004 US Presidential Election. Vindication later came when President Bush campaigned at the Reno-Sparks Convention Center on June 18, 2004. The president opened his talk by proclaiming that "It's great to be here in /nəˈˈvædə/," the crowd roaring its approval when he light-heartedly noted "You didn't think I'd get it right, did ya?"