We may live in a desert but we still know how to celebrate the holidays in Las Vegas. Check out this list of events etc. around the valley.
The 25th anniversary of the holiday cactus garden lighting ceremony took place Nov. 6 at Ethel M Chocolates in Henderson. Enjoy more than 3 acres of cacti covered in a million holiday lights throughout the holiday season. Live entertainment and photo opps with Santa on the weekends.
Glittering Lights at Las Vegas Motor Speedway is Nevada’s largest drive-through Christmas light show and features millions of LED lights and hundreds of sparkling light displays. If you don’t want to drive, hop on Silver State Schools Credit Union’s Santa Tram. There’s also a festive area with games and Santa and plenty of photo opps.
The Shops at Crystals has transformed itself for the holidays. A spectacular 65-foot tree is designed to look like a 100-year-old giant of the forest and is decorated with 5,000 Swarovski crystal ornaments, 1,000 real pinecones and glittering lights. In addition to the tree, The Shops at Crystals has installed a winter floral carpet to accompany their lavish and glamorous decor.
Bass Pro Shop is celebrating 10 years of Santa’s Wonderland — the ultimate free family event. Bass Pro Shops transforms itself into a festive Christmas village and provides free photos with Santa and free family activities with crafts, games and holiday magic for the entire family. Set amongst rustic Christmas cabins, holiday characters and live elves, the Christmas village offers families various free crafts and activities such as a Lincoln Logs building area, laser and foam toy arcade, new gaming station, remote control trucks and free crafts and wish list letter writing stations.
Downtown Summerlin will kick off the holidays with the arrival of Santa Claus and a holiday parade on Nov. 16. The ice skating rink will be located near the Pavilion on The Lawn. There will also be train rides an live entertainment throughout the holiday season. Downtown Summerlin will celebrate Hanukkah on Dec. 9.
Santa arrives at Town Square Las Vegas . There will be a parade at 7 p.m. followed by a tree lighting and “Snow in the Square.” Photos available with Santa with a reservation. Festivities continue through Dec.
M Resort is hosting a three-day holiday craft festival starting Nov. 16. There will also be photos with Santa and a Hug-A-Bear Drive.
Enjoy ice skating during the holidays in Winters Village at Green Valley Ranch Resort.
Enjoy free movies at Red Rock Resort’s Winter’s Village . Movie lineup includes “Frozen” on Nov. 20; “Home Alone” on Nov. 27; “Elf” on Dec. 4; “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas” on Dec. 11; “Polar Express” on Dec. 18; and “The Muppet Christmas Carol” on Dec. 25.
A holiday tradition for over 20 years, Mystic Falls Park at Sam’s Town will be decked out with beautiful holiday decor, an exciting laser light show and we will be making it snow in Vegas every night through the new year! The laser shows start daily at 5 p.m. and continue every hour until 10 p.m. There will be a tree lighting ceremony on Nov. 21.
The Ice Rink opens for the holiday season at The Cosmopolitan’s Boulevard Pool. Skate on 4,200-square-feet of real ice, roast s’mores by the fire, and indulge in seasonal food and beverage offerings. There will also be light snow showers during select times throughout the season. Discounts for locals Mondays through Thursdays. There will also be several special events including a tree lighting.
The “Tournament of Kings” arena is magically transformed into a medieval winter wonderland for “Tournament of Kings: ’Twas the Knight” from Nov. 21 through Dec. 27. The show will feature magnificently designed holiday costumes, majestic banners, flags and new castle lights, which will be illuminated as Merlin conjures snowfall on the kingdoms.
Fashion Show mall is celebrating the season with a New York-style theatrical holiday show every Friday, Saturday and Sunday through the holiday season starting Nov. 23. Photo opps with Santa also available starting Nov. 23 and don’t forget to check out the “Santagra” holographic window display.
Cowabunga Bay transforms into Christmas Town beginning Nov. 23. The entire park will be filled with holiday decorations, spectacular lights and displays, family winter activities and of course delicious holiday foods & drinks from across the globe!
Terry Fator’s “A Very Terry Christmas” is back beginning Nov. 23. Fator and cast will celebrate the holidays with comedy, singing, celebrity impersonations and ventriloquism, featuring classics including “Winter Wonderland,” “Sleigh Ride” and “White Christmas” plus you’ll learn all about “Juana” a new holiday guaranteed to make you laugh.
The Magical Forest at Opportunity Village opens Nov. 23. Feast your eyes at the more than three million lights on hundreds of decorated trees. Ride the Forest Express passenger train, take a spin on the Carousel or visit Santa. There is fun for the whole family and plenty of special events and offers throughout the season.
The weather forecast at Galleria at Sunset mall will include snow every weekend beginning Nov. 23 through Dec. 23. There will be “snowfall” outside in the Lower Plaza every Friday and Saturday from 6 to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 5 to 6 p.m. Photos with Santa will also be offered at the mall through Dec. 24. Pet photos will be available every Tuesday through Dec. 18.
Head to DISCOVERY Children’s Museum for the Nutcracker Extravaganza with Nevada Ballet Theater on Nov. 23. Join the fun and dress up as Nutcracker characters, walk through interactive story highlights of The Nutcracker with your family and preview the wonder of Las Vegas’ favorite holiday tradition.
Community Lutheran Church is hosting a holiday event titled Let Heaven & Nature Sing beginning Nov. 23. There will be a Christmas market, family activities area, German-style delicacies and singing.
The Nutcracker with a Latin Twist” opens Nov 24 at Palo Verde High School. Limited performances. Presented by Jordan Studios, owned by husband and wife Paula and Jimi Jordan, who are trained in the art of ballet and salsa have partnered with Luz Morante, the artistic director to create the fusion of both artistic worlds.
The District at Green Valley Ranch is planning a Christmas tree lighting and laser light show extravaganza at 6 p.m. Nov. 24. There will also be a meet-and-greet with Mrs. Claus and other holiday characters, entertainment by The Young Entertainers, an appearance by Santa Claus, and more.
The Silent Knight Festival & Vendor Fair is happening 2-6 p.m. Nov. 24 at The Space LV. There will be VGK-themed vendors, live entertainment, food trucks, full bar and face painting.
The Holiday Experience at The Park kicks off Nov. 29. It will happen 4 to 8 p.m. every Friday through Dec. 31. Live entertainment, sweet treats, warm cocktails, photo ops, interactive experiences and more.
BEER PARK at Paris Las Vegas is hosting an ‘80s Holiday Ski Party on Dec. 8. Hot chocolate bar, stout beer flights, electric table side s’mores, shot skis, photo opps with Santa, karaoke, smoked meatloaf sandwiches, chances to win ski passes and more.
There will be a tree lighting ceremony at the Silverton hotel-casino. Bring your family and friends for a fun time with bouncy slides, live entertainment, face painters, hot cocoa, and sugar cookies. This holiday event also includes fun mechanical bull riding, a live radio remote show with 102.7 The Coyote and crafts!
Singer Andrea Bocelli is back at the MGM Grand Garden Arena for several performances starting Nov. 30. The Italian tenor, born with congenital glaucoma and blind since age 12, remains the world’s biggest-selling solo classical artist with sales of more than 80 million records. A stop in Las Vegas during the holidays is an annual tradition.
The Las Vegas Philharmonic's Classic Holiday Concert is happening Dec. 1 at The Smith Center for the Performing Arts. Songs include “Deck The Halls,” “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen,” “Santa Baby,””Sleigh Ride,” “Little Drummer Boy,” “Twas the Night Before Christmas” and many more. Vocalists Kristen Hertzenberg and Travis Cloer lend their considerable talents on "Ave Maria," "White Christmas” and other melodies in addition to narrating "Twas the Night Before Christmas.”
Bellagio’s Conservatory & Botanical Gardens will be decorated for the holidays beginning Dec. 1. The conservatory is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The holiday display will be in place through Jan. 6.
Santa arrives Dec. 1 at the Shark Reef Aquarium at Mandalay Bay, Santa in the Shipwreck continues Dec. 2, Dec. 8 and 9, 15 and 16 and 22-24. Before jumping on his sleigh, Santa will put on his SCUBA gear and plunge into the Shipwreck waters to bid everyone farewell alongside his underwater friends.
Chabad of Southern Nevada and the Fremont Street Experience will mark the beginning of the holiday of Chanukah by hosting a public Menorah Lighting Ceremony. The ceremony starts at 4 p.m. and the lighting will happen at about 4:45 p.m. There will be live music, a choir, latkes (potato pancakes), free dreidels for children, and more.
Watch “A Christmas Story” while skating on the ice rink at The Cosmopolitan on Dec. 3. Share a hot cider and roast s‘mores beside the fire for a holiday experience that truly takes away the winter chill.
Watch “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” while skating on the ice rink at The Cosmopolitan on Dec. 3. Share a hot cider and roast s‘mores beside the fire for a holiday experience that truly takes away the winter chill.
Deryk Engelland with Vegas Golden Knights will host The Cosmopolitan’s 2nd annual Christmas tree lighting ceremony on Dec. 5. Fans, locals, and tourists alike can take part in all of the winter festivities The Ice Rink has to offer during this family-friendly affair. The lighting of the 36’ tall Christmas tree will take place at 7 p.m.
Cowboys and Christmas go hand in hand. The Wrangler National Finals Rodeo returns to the Thomas & Mack Center on Dec. 6. In addition to rodeo action, Cowboy Christmas will be happening at the Las Vegas Convention Center through Dec. 15. This year’s event features more than 300 exhibitors.
Climb aboard the Springs Preserve’s Holiday Express and be whisked away on a magical train ride to Santa’s village. Spend time with Santa, make holiday crafts, enjoy storytelling and cookie decorating, play in the snow and much more. It’s a family-fun winter wonderland with departures 14 times each day through Dec. 23, every half-hour from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
WinterFest is back for another year at the Henderson Events Plaza Dec. 7 and 8. This year's theme is Winter Blue Edition and includes a variety of family-friendly activities. Among the list of activities will be the official tree-lighting ceremony with Mayor Debra March and Santa, craft and food vendors, live entertainment, and a spectacular evening light parade. WinterFest is open to all ages, from the young to the young at heart.
Inspirada is getting into the season's spirit with a Holiday Village, a family-friendly wonderland from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Solista Park, 1890 Via Firenze, Henderson. Access to the event is free and open to the public. Activities include: a Farmers' Market, craft sale, cooking demonstration led by Chef Steve, photo booth with festive props and food trucks. There will also be plenty of activities to keep the younger ones entertained, including meet-and-greet and photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus as well as Elsa and Olaf, games and music with DJ Jace, bounce houses, train rides and children's holiday crafts. There will also be live entertainment featuring Inspirada's very own school children groups.
“The Nutcracker” is back at The Smith Center for the Performing Arts beginning Dec. 9. Come along on a magical journey with Clara and her handsome Prince, from the warmth of her family home to a land of toy soldiers, mischievous rodents and exotic visitors from faraway lands. This magical tour through the wonder and sparkle of the season features a cast of nearly 100 dancers including Nevada Ballet Theater's talented company artists and students from NBT’s affiliated Academy. Enjoy the Nutcracker Wonderland before any performance. The Squirrel Nut Zippers is bringing its Holiday Caravan to Brooklyn Bowl on Dec. 9.
The Dave Koz & Friends Christmas Tour 2018 stop at Red Rock Resort on Dec. 14. Now in its 21st year, the tour has received nationwide critical acclaim since its 1997 inception.
Global Winter Wonderland , a spectacular lantern festival and multicultural theme park, will make its Las Vegas debut this holiday season in the north lot of the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino. Global Winter Wonderland will feature giant illuminated lanterns depicting scenes that include a Christmas holiday village and landscapes from around the world. Highlights include recreations of some of the world’s greatest architectural achievements, including the Taj Mahal, the Eiffel Tower, Chichen Itza, and much more. In addition, there will be 2 ball play pits, a kids zone, carnival rides, and more.
Breakfast with Santa 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15, at Silver Mesa Recreation Center, 4025 Allen Lane, North Las Vegas. $2 per person; limited to the first 200 people who register. Call Silver Mesa Recreation Center at (702) 633-2550 to register.
The SoBe Ice Arena at Fiesta Rancho will present a holiday ice skating show on Dec. 15. The longtime Las Vegas tradition will transport the audience to a holiday extravaganza through the skaters’ performances. The show features Las Vegas figure skaters of all ages and skill levels. Cost is $10 per person at the door for general admission, or $15 for VIP seating. Tickets are available at the SoBe Ice Arena box office.
Santa will fly to Hoover Dam Lodge with the help of Papillion Helicopter Tours, arriving around 9:45 a.m. Hoover Dam Lodge staff and onlookers will greet Santa outside the property near the helicopter pad, walk him inside the hotel to his Santa House where he will be taking Christmas wishes from kids from 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Santa’s Winter House will include workstation for kids to create a Christmas keepsake, workstation for kids to decorate their own cookies, write letters to Santa and drop in the Santa mailbox and photos with Santa. Additionally, there will be free cookies, hot chocolate, coffee and Santa stocking stuffers for kids of all ages. The event is FREE and open to the public.
Gingerbread House Decorating event will be at Public Works Coffee Bar in Henderson from 10 a.m. until noon. For $20 per seat (or $25 for a house and a coffee or beverage from Public Works), children and adults alike can decorate a locally-made Mad Batter gingerbread house with help from Mad Batter bakers. All supplies are included to make a gingerbread house worthy of the season. To sign up, guests should call Public Works at 725-223-3900 – the event is limited to 20 houses!
Holiday gingerbread decorating from 4:30-5:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 20, at Alexander Library, 1755 W. Alexander Road, North Las Vegas. Free and open to the public; reservation required. We pre-make the houses for your children to decorate. Drop off your donation of frosting and/or candy by Thursday, Dec. 13, to reserve a spot. Due to the popularity of the program, tickets will be handed out 30 minutes prior to the start of the event. For more information, visit cityofnorthlasvegas.com .
Celebrate the holidays Vegas style with “Linda Suzanne’s Rockin’ Vegas Christmas Show” on Dec. 21 at the Westgate hotel-casino. The show will feature renditions of holiday classics with a rock n’ roll edge, gorgeous dancers, a live five-piece band and, of course, Santa Claus! Tickets start at $29.95 plus tax and fees.
Breakfast with Santa 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 22, at Neighborhood Recreation Center, 1638 N. Bruce St., North Las Vegas. Free, limited to 100 members. Call Neighborhood Recreation Center at (702) 633-1600 for more information or to register.
Head to Velveteen Rabbit for a Solstice Celebration of Giving on Dec. 22. There will be a special feast and one-of-a-kind artisan cocktails. There will be heaters to keep everyone warm on the patio. Suggested admission is a $10 present for a child in shelter or a gift for a homeless person.
DRUMLine Live is coming back to The Smith Center for the Performing Arts. The performance showcases dazzling vocalists, high-octane musicians and energetic choreography all based on the marching band tradition of Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Highlights include a show-stopping rendition of “The Little Drummer Boy,” fully reimagined by the HBCU drumline. The show delivers modern holiday hits by Mariah Carey, Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber, as well as classic favorites like “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” “Santa Clause is Coming to Town,” and “Jingle Bells.”
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