This week's 13 things list is a little different. A common new year's resolution is to explore the world. This week's list features 13 things to do (mostly) outside in the Las Vegas valley or nearby.
1. Seven Magic Mountains by renowned Swiss artist Ugo Rondinon is located about 10 miles south of Las Vegas Boulevard and Saint Rose Parkway. The seven towers are made from brightly-painted, locally-sourced boulders. There is no cost to visit Seven Magic Mountains.
2. Las Vegas Ski & Snowboard Resort, which bills itself as the coolest place in Las Vegas, is the place to go if you like to ski and snowboard. They also have a brand-new Hillside Lodge, which is celebrating its grand opening on Jan. 10. Other upcoming events include 5th annual Chris Rugby Cup on Jan. 11 and live music on the Hillside Deck on Jan. 12.
3. Hoover Dam on the Colorado River was built during the Depression. It is a National Historic landmark and has been rated by the American Society of Civil Engineers as one of America's Seven Modern Civil Engineering Wonders. There are 3 tours available -- guided damn tour, guided powerplant tour and self-guided visitor center tour. There are only 2 days a year when tours are not offered.
4. The Springs Preserve is a 180-acre cultural institution designed to commemorate Las Vegas' dynamic history. The Preserve features museums, galleries, outdoor events, a colorful botanical garden and an interpretive trail system through a scenic wetland habitat. Current activities include Backyard Adventures and Crack A Jumbo Geode.
5. Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area is located off West Charleston Boulevard about 17 miles west of Las Vegas. It features a one-way 13-mile scenic drive, a visitor center, and many hiking trails. It's known for geological features such as towering red sandstone peaks and the Keystone Thrust Fault, as well as Native American petroglyphs.
6. Spring Mountain Ranch State Park is adjacent to the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area in Nevada's Cottonwood Valley. The ranch features a historical home that was once occupied by German movie star Vera Krupp and billionaire Howard Hughes. Additionally, visitors can explore some of the oldest building in Nevada. The state park hosts a variety of events throughout the year.
7. The Clark County Wetlands Park is the largest park in the Clark County system. The purpose of the park is to preserve and enhance natural and cultural resources and provide educational, recreational and research opportunities. The park on the east side of the valley and includes a nature center, exhibit hall and nature store. It hosts a storytime every Sunday.
8. Siegfried & Roy's Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat is home to some of nature's most exotic and majestic creatures. It is home to bottlenose dolphins, white tigers, white lions and leopards, birds and more. They offer VIP tours, trainer for a day packages, painting with the dolphins and yoga with the dolphins. It is located at The Mirage on the Las Vegas Strip. h
9. The Lion Habitat Ranch is a lion sanctuary in Henderson. Experiences include Feast with the Beasts, a behind-the-scenes tour, a chance to feed the animals and more. They often host special events and celebrate Ozzie the giraffe's birthday every year with a special party.
10. The Neon Museum was founded in 1996. It is dedicated to preserving, studying and exhibiting iconic Las Vegas signs for education, historic, arts and culturah enrichment. It's outdoor exhibition space is known as the Neon Boneyard. It was recently announced that "Lost Vegas: Tim Burton @ The Neon Museum" has been extended through April 12. He will return Jan. 21 at 1:30 p.m. to sign copies of the brand-new exhibition catalog.
11. The Lake Mead Marina and Las Vegas Boat Harbor are popular spots for residents and tourists. Many people enjoy feeding the popcorn-gobbling, overgrown gray goldfish that hang around the docks. The state fish commission introduced the species in the 1880s for sport-fishing and eating. But, most people don't eat carp anymore. The Boat House restaurant and lounge is a good place to grab a bite to eat and drink and watch the water. You can also rent boats and kayaks.
12. The 680-acre Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs offers a great respite with several lakes for fishing, a wealth of plant life, views of the Sheep and Spring Mountain ranges, historic buildings, paths, pucnic tables and more. The park hosts many events throughout the year.
13. Valley of Fire State Park is a fairly easy drive from Las Vegas. The geological park features a variety of sandstone formations that were generated 150 million years ago. Ancient trees and early man are represented throughout the park by areas of petrified wood and 3,000-year-old Indian petroglyphs. Popular activities include hiking, picnicking and photography. There is a visitor center and 72 campsites.
BONUS EVENT FROM OUR SPONSOR SOUTH POINT HOTEL AND CASINO
The Dennis Bono Show returns on Jan. 9. Bono has been hosting a weekly syndicated radio show for 20 years. The weekly show features various local celebrities and new Las Vegas artists. His first guest 20 years ago was Bob Anderson. The show is at 2 p.m. in the showroom.