October 16, 2021

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Holiday activities and events in the Las Vegas Valley

Ready or not, the holiday season is upon us. And, even though this year will be different from years past, festive activities are still planned to try and help bring some cheer to the Las Vegas Valley. Here are a few that have opened, or are opening soon, with websites listed so you can check out the planned safety protocols and make reservations where it is required.

Area15

Wanderland is open 4-10 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and 2-10 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through Jan. 3 at 3215 S. Rancho Drive. The outdoor holiday experience features Balanceville, a 30-foot intergalactic art sleigh lit with hundreds of lights, a tree-lined village with extraterrestrial surprises, a festive path of igloos with Instagram-worthy holiday vignettes, pop-up retailers and more. Ticket prices vary. Holiday 360: The Dream Before, a 30-minute light and sound exhibition, is located in Area15’s Portal and is available as a bundle. area15.com/events/wanderland

Aria

The resort’s Winter Wonderland lobby display surrounds a life-size Sugar Palace created by pasty chef Mathieu Lavallee and his team. Guests will be able to buy festive treats from Aria’s pastry team at the palace throughout the holiday season. The lobby display also features a glittering winter forest with custom-designed trees, oversized ornaments and a 17-foot Christmas tree decorated with 500 crystals. aria.mgmresorts.com

Bellagio

The Bellagio Conservatory & Botanical Gardens will debut its “Hopeful Holidays” winter display on Dec. 4. The display will feature a Snow Queen, a family of polar bears, a 42-foot Christmas tree and more. Viewing will be available 24 hours daily through mid-January. Admission is free. bellagio.com

The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas

The Ice Rink at Boulevard Pool is open 3-11 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and noon-11 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 17. From Dec. 18 to Jan. 3, hours will be noon-11 p.m. daily. Holiday hours are noon-midnight Christmas Eve and Christmas Day (closed New Year’s Eve). All-day skating is $30. Mondays through Thursdays skating access is $20 for locals, military with ID and hotel guests. Admission to the winter wonderland surrounding the rink is free. Date Skate Mondays and Tuesdays will feature classic holiday films through Dec. 29. cosmopolitanlasvegas.com/ice-rink

Downtown Summerlin

The Rock Rink offers ice skating near the 40-foot glittering tree located on the Lawn at Downtown Summerlin, 1980 Festival Plaza Drive. Hours vary and reservations are required. Skate rentals start at $16. Holiday train rides share the same operating hours as the Rock Rink. Rides are $4. Downtown Summerlin also features a 30-foot tree in the Dining Arroyo and the Lane of Lights selfie location near H&M and Hollister. The Tinseltone Carolers will perform 5-8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays through Dec. 19. Through Dec. 22, letters to Santa Claus can be dropped off at the red mailbox located in his Chalet on Festival Plaza Drive. On Dec. 14, Jewish Nevada and the JCC will also host a one-night livestream Hanukkah celebration featuring the lighting of the menorah, live entertainment and more. summerlin.com

Ethel M Chocolate’s Holiday Cactus Garden

Reservation slots to visit the 3-acre cactus garden are booked for the season. A post on Ethel M Chocolate’s website mentions the public can check back for any cancellations. In addition, the public is welcome to stop by as a walk-in to see if someone didn’t show up for their slot time. The factory store at 2 Cactus Garden Drive is offering Sweets with Santa on select days and times outside at the factory store’s pavilion. The event features a two-piece chocolate tasting, a chocolate dipped cookie, hot chocolate and a photo with Santa; $25. ethelm.com

Glittering Lights

Las Vegas Motor Speedway is decorated with more than 3 million LED lights on a 2.5-mile course at 7000 Las Vegas Blvd. North. November hours are 5:30-9 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays and 5:30-10 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays and holidays. The attraction will open at 5 p.m. in December, with early opening at 4:45 p.m. from Dec. 19 to Dec. 27. Vehicles are $25-$35, and a fast pass is $55 on select dates. A season pass is $85 and is good for all 60 nights. A portion of each ticket sold will benefit Speedway Children’s Charities, and Goodwill of Southern Nevada offers a $5 discount entry voucher with a donation of clothing or household items. glitteringlightslasvegas.com

‘Holly Jolly on Fremont’

Commonwealth, 525 E. Fremont St., and Park on Fremont, 506 Fremont St., bring holiday cheer to downtown Las Vegas with over-the-top decorations, holiday-themed cocktails, live music and more, through Dec.31. Commonwealth will feature seasonal cocktails, a DJ spinning on its Winter Wonderland Rooftop, and a pianist playing holiday classics at the Laundry Room. Park on Fremont is Santa’s Workshop with a festive food and drink menu. Reservations are encouraged. hollyjollydtlv.com

Las Vegas Festival of Lights

Open 5:30-10:30 p.m. daily through Jan. 9 at Craig Ranch Regional Park, 628 W. Craig Road, North Las Vegas. Features rides, games, snowfalls nightly, photos with Santa and more. Reservations are required. Tickets are $15 (games and rides are not included); ages 3 and younger are free. Ticket packages are available. vegasfestivaloflights.com

Red Rock Resort

Merry Crimson, the indoor/outdoor pop-up holiday bar, will feature seasonal specialty cocktails, a DJ, fire pits, private cabanas, beverage specials and more, through Jan. 3. Hours will be 5-11 p.m. Thursdays and Sundays and 5 p.m.-1 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays. For reservations, call 707-797-7877. redrockresort.com/eat-and-drink/merry-crimson

‘Santa’s Wonderland’

Bass Pro Shops offers a contactless free visit with Santa and holiday craft activity kits to take home (while supplies last) at 8200 Dean Martin Drive. Hours vary. Advance reservations are required. For details, visit basspro.com/santa.

Shark Reef

Mandalay Bay’s Shark Reef Aquarium will feature Diving Santa in the venue’s Shipwreck area from Dec. 21 to Dec. 24. Ticket prices vary. mandalaybay.com

Tivoli Village

Santa Baby, a holiday pop-up bar, will feature holiday-themed cocktails, music and Christmas festivities for ages 21 and older from 6 p.m.-midnight daily Nov. 30 to Dec. 23. The experience will be located in the center of Tivoli Village on the first floor at 420 S. Rampart Blvd., Suite 130. Guests under 21 will be admitted on Mondays only. Admission is $5.50. Ticket time slots are for 1-hour and should be purchased in advance. Walk-ins are welcome if there is availability, and group bookings also are available. vegas.santa-baby.com

Town Square

Snow in the Square starts at 7 p.m. daily through Dec. 23, with additional 8 p.m. shows Fridays through Sundays. Photos with Santa will be available daily by appointment through Dec. 24 at 6605 Las Vegas Blvd. South. Online registration is required at townsquaresanta.com. mytownsquarelasvegas.com

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