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What’s Happening Vegas? – December

As the Entertainment Capital of the world, Las Vegas continuously adds new shows, attractions, and events to its already impressive repertoire.

Christmas in Las Vegas

Las Vegas is known for its bright lights and over-the-top décor. During the holiday season, Vegas truly ups the ante when it comes to transforming into a festive winter wonderland! Here’s what’s happening on the Ninth Island this holiday season.

Starting with The Strip, the Bellagio Conservatory has switched from their fall theme to their Christmas theme.  This is a free attraction that’s open 24/7 & is a must-see…and smell…all of the fresh flowers really add to the experience. Vegas locals and visitors can experience this festive flower display through January 1, 2023.

Aria also has decorations in their lobby area that are worth checking out.  This is another free, 24/7 attraction. Next to Aria, The Shops at Crystals has an immersive nutcracker experience from November 19-December 30th. Hopefully, the giant Swarovski crystals tree returns.

The ice-skating rink at the Cosmopolitan

The next must-see on The Strip is the ice-skating rink at the Cosmopolitan.  The Cosmopolitan’s pool transforms into a winter wonderland for those who enjoy strapping on some skates, as well as for those who just want to enjoy the festive atmosphere and beautiful views. The rink is currently open and will remain open through January 2nd.

It’s fun to walk from casino to casino to check out the decorations. Most of the Strip Casinos have some decorations, mostly located in their lobby/registration areas. The Grand Canal Shops tend to add a little more cheer in their waterfall atrium area, as well as throughout the shops. The Wynn next door also transforms into the Wynn’s Winter Wonderland. Across Las Vegas Blvd, Fashion Show Mall gets festive over the holidays, including a holiday wish installation, holiday movies, magic, pictures with Santa, and a holiday pet PAWty.

The LINQ Promenade has some decorations and a giant Christmas tree located on top of the fountain.  Next door the Flamingo habitat has added some festive flare to this popular (and free) attraction.

Enchant Las Vegas

Resorts World Las Vegas will host Enchant Las Vegas’ second location.  This location runs through January 1st.  The original Enchant Las Vegas is back for its second year at the Las Vegas Ballpark in Downtown Summerlin, near Red Rock Casino, Resort & Spa. This location will also close on 1/1.

Santa Run

One of our favorite holiday events is the annual Santa Run, which has set the Guinness Book of World Records for the most Santas gathered in one place.  This event begins down on Fremont Street and is a leisurely walk or run through downtown Las Vegas.  The Santa run is held on December 3rd and benefits local nonprofit, Opportunity Village.

Magical Forest
Magical Forest

Opportunity Village also hosts another popular Christmas event, The Magical Forest.  This forest gets bigger and better every year!  The forest welcomes guests through December 31st.

Glittering Lights

Another cool holiday attraction that also benefits the local nonprofits is the Glittering Lights at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.  This one is great for those cold Vegas nights since it is experienced from the comfort of your vehicle. Pack everyone into one car, since the fee is per car not per person, and drive through the beautiful light displays. This attraction remains open through January 8th.

Ethel M’s Cactus Garden

Ethel M’s Cactus Garden out in Henderson is also a really unique holiday attraction.  The Garden is currently open through January 1st and this year no reservations are required. Just like the Magical Forest, it gets bigger and better each year.

Here are some other holiday-themed attractions and events across the Ninth Island of Las Vegas…

  • Cowabunga Bay transforms from a Water Park to a Christmas experience November 18th-1/1.
  • Silverton Casino has brought back their Bad Elf pop up bar again this year. Silverton is also welcoming Mongos Keiki Toy Drive on 12/3.
  • M Resort is home to a snow carnival 11/23-1/8.
  • The Sand Dollar, the original Christmas pop up, currently has their Sippin’ Santa at their original Spring Mountain location as well as their new location at the Plaza Downtown.
  • Sam’s Town’s Mystic Falls will mystically turn into a holiday themed attraction.
  • Nightmare before Christmas will be at Mas Por Favor Taqueria now thru 12/22.
  • The Rock Ice Skating Rink in Downtown Summerlin will be open through 1/16. Downtown Summerlin also hosts holiday parades.
  • Tivoli Village will offer horse and carriage rides throughout the village, which is also home to Santa’s Experience, an Instagrammers holiday paradise.

Now if you’re here for New Years, just know that it’s busier and more expensive, but also a really fun time.  Las Vegas BLVD closes down for the fireworks, which are fantastic; however, this does impact traffic.  Be sure to pack your patience along with your party hats!

Several Las Vegas clubs and bars hold NYE parties and the biggest party, the Fremont Street Experience, actually requires tickets.  Check their website for more details on the Time of Your Life NYE event, which will feature Sugar Ray and Bush.  The Plaza caps off the end of the year with their traditional fireworks display.

Other concerts include…

  • Tenacious D 12/30-31 Virgin Las Vegas
  • Bruno Mars 12/30-31 Dolby Theater at Park MGM
  • 12/31 The Original Misfits Michelob Ultra Arena at Mandalay Bay
  • 12/31 The Killers at The Chelsea Theater at The Cosmopolitan
  • Gwen Stefani 12/30 &12/31 at the Venetian

Ninth Island Connection will feature our Christmas in Vegas episode over the holidays on Yurview in Las Vegas, Southern California and Yuma, Arizona. We have also included a link for more information on the holiday festivities here in Vegas. On behalf of the team at Ninth Island Connection, we wish everyone a happy and safe Holiday Season!

Whether you’re a Las Vegas Local, or just visiting the Ninth Island, be sure to get out and explore this beautiful state! For more information on each of these destinations, check out this video, or tune into Ninth Island Connection on YouTube or YurView (Channel 14) Wednesdays @ 9 PM