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Las Vegas Showcases the Holidays

Las Vegas Showcases the Holidays

There’s no place like Las Vegas for the holidays, as festive decorations and jolly events usher in the celebratory season. Locally cherished and brand-new winter wonderland displays pop up throughout the destination, making Vegas an ideal spot to take in the sights and sounds of the holidays.
AREA15 is bringing back a unique viewing experience of Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas for a second year. Held from Thursday, Nov. 24 to Thursday, Dec. 29 at The Portal, the experience features floor-to-ceiling projection mapping, immersive light and sound, and a curated cocktail menu.
The Bellagio Conservatory & Botanical Gardens at Bellagio Resort & Casino transforms into a winter wonderland with its “Gingerbread Dreams” display running through Sunday, Jan. 1. Complete with scenes of a holiday village and polar bears, the presentation also features a snowy gingerbread house (complete with a smoking chimney) that visitors can walk through. Its centerpiece is a 42-foot holiday tree, decorated with thousands of ornaments and warm white lights.
The rooftop Legacy Club lounge at Circa Resort & Casino invites visitors to don their most unsightly sweaters for its Ugly Sweater Party. Set for Friday, Dec. 16, the festive celebration includes an ugly sweater contest, themed cocktails, holiday cookies, live music and photo-worthy views from the 60th floor of the downtown resort.
Visitors can ice skate on more than 4,200 square feet of real ice at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, as it brings back The Ice Rink at the resort’s Boulevard Pool. Running through Monday, Jan. 2, the space also features opportunities to roast s’mores at fire pits, seasonal cocktails, classic holiday films on its marquee and breathtaking rooftop views surrounded by vibrant city lights.
A longtime local tradition, the Holiday Cactus Garden at Ethel M Chocolates features millions of sparkling holiday lights across three acres of desert landscaping. The experience, running through Sunday, Jan. 1, is complete with sweet treats, hot chocolate and visits from the Great Big Man in Red – and in the spirit of giving, each entrance fee collected will be donated to local charities within the valley: Help of Southern Nevada and Three Square Food Bank.
Excalibur Hotel & Casino’s Tournament of Kings dinner show brings back ‘Twas the Knight, a holiday rendition of the production, from Wednesday, Nov. 23 to Sunday, Dec. 25. Featuring jousting knights, a holiday-themed dinner menu, pyrotechnics and more, the show’s arena will transform into a winter wonderland during the limited engagement.
Fashion Show Las Vegas brings cheer to the Strip through Monday, Dec. 26 with a wide array of holiday-themed experiences, including festive photo opportunities, a holiday installation and more. Visitors can also take pictures with Santa and spread cheer through a donation program.
The Fremont Street Experience will bring back its Grand Menorah and Christmas tree, with a Grand Menorah lighting celebration planned for Sunday, Dec. 18. The downtown Las Vegas attraction will also host a fun-filled pre-show for The Las Vegas Great Santa Run on Saturday, Dec. 3. The event is complete with food trucks, vendors and live entertainment, with proceeds benefitting Opportunity Village, a local nonprofit that supports individuals with physical and intellectual disabilities.
The Hallmark Channel presents Enchant at Las Vegas Ballpark from Friday, Nov. 25 to Sunday, Jan. 1 and at Resorts World Las Vegas from Saturday, Nov. 19 to Sunday, Jan. 1. The two distinct winter experiences highlight themed walk-through mazes – “The Mischievous Elf” at the Las Vegas Ballpark and “The Great Search” at Resorts World Las Vegas – with each venue featuring more than 4 million sparkling lights, as well as ice skating, live entertainment, Santa visits and more.
The official gift show of the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, Cowboy Channel’s Cowboy Christmas features over 350 exhibitors from across the United States. A yearly tradition since 1986, the event is hosted at the Las Vegas Convention Center from Thursday, Dec. 1 to Saturday, Dec. 10. In addition to the unique products available for purchase, Cowboy Christmas features interactive experiences, live entertainment and free entry to all visitors.
Visitors can enjoy a display of over 5 million holiday lights without leaving their car at Glittering Lights at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The drive-through spectacle runs through Sunday, Jan. 8 with a portion of each ticket benefitting Speedway Children’s Charities, a group of over 50 children’s charities in Southern Nevada.
The LINQ Promenade is decked out for the holiday season through the New Year with light displays and a towering, 30-foot tree.
A gentle flurry of snowflakes will fall from The M Resort Spa & Casino from Wednesday, Nov. 23 to Sunday, Jan. 8 at the Snow Carnival Holiday Forest. The family-friendly experience features real snow and is complete with winter treats and drinks, a “mini-Matterhorn” slide ride and more.
Mystic Falls Park at Sam’s Town Hotel and Gambling Hall transforms into a winter wonderland from Wednesday, Nov. 23 through Sunday, Jan. 1. The attraction and display will feature festive décor (including an 18-foot Christmas tree), more than 26,000 lights and a nine-minute holiday laser light show set to a variety of classic yuletide songs.
The Shops at Crystals presents Immersive Nutcracker, a multisensory exhibit of the classic Christmas tale, through Friday, Dec. 30. The 30-minute experience, spanning 500,000 cubic feet, features an introduction to the art of ballet and storytelling—all set to the familiar music of Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky.
The Nevada Ballet Theatre presents The Nutcracker at The Smith Center for the Performing Arts. Celebrating its 50th year, the company’s annual performance has become a local holiday tradition. Choreographed by James Canfield, NBT’s iteration of the classic ballet is a magical journey through a larger-than-life world filled with waltzing flowers, nimble fairies, and moonlit snow. The holiday classic runs from Friday, Dec. 9 to Saturday, Dec. 24.
Tivoli Village will be transformed with thousands of twinkling lights, a 40-foot holiday tree, ornaments adorning its fountain, and wreaths and garlands. The open-air shopping center in Summerlin will present a tree-lighting event on Wednesday, Nov. 23, featuring carolers, Santa visits, complimentary horse-and-carriage rides and more. The carriage rides and live entertainment continues throughout the season on Fridays and Saturdays.
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