LIST: Las Vegas valley holiday events and light shows for 2020

Local News
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LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — This holiday season will certainly look different and several holiday traditions in the Las Vegas valley are adapting. Event organizers are working hard to create safe, socially-distant events for your family this holiday season.

Cosmopolitan Ice Rink
The iconic Ice Rink will return on Wednesday, Nov. 18 for its ninth consecutive season. Upholding tradition, the Boulevard Pool will transform into a rooftop winter wonderland featuring a 4,200-square-foot skating rink made of real ice, seasonal culinary cocktails and fare, socially distanced fire pits for s’mores making, and classic holiday films projected high above the Las Vegas Strip on the resort’s 65-foot marquee. You can read the health and sanitation guidelines at this link.

The rink is open Monday through Friday (Nov. 18 – Dec. 17) from 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from noon to 11 p.m. Hours from Dec. 18 – Jan. 3 are noon – 11 p.m. There are special hours for Dec. 24 & Dec. 25. Prices vary but entry around the rink is free. Click here for more information.

Glittering Lights
Glittering Lights at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway is a drive-thru experience where visitors can see 700 displays along the 2.5 mile long course that has 5 million LED lights. The holiday show draws more than 250,000 visitors every year and runs from Nov. 13 through Jan. 10. There are a variety of ticket options starting at $25. You can find more information at this link.

Las Vegas Great Santa Run
The Las Vegas Great Santa Run is going virtual this year and offering a new fundraising competition that offers prizes to the top three fundraisers. The Santa run is one of Opportunity Village’s largest single-day fundraisers and the goal this year is to raise $15,000. The virtual race is from Dec. 5 – Dec. 26. Click here for more information.

Participants head towards the start of the 14th annual Las Vegas Great Santa Run Saturday, December 1, 2018, in downtown Las Vegas. CREDIT: Sam Morris/Las Vegas News Bureau

Holiday Cactus Garden (Currently all cactus garden reservations are booked)
Experience the annual light display that features a beautifully lit 3-acre cactus garden with 1-million lights. The display will be open nightly from Nov. 7 through Jan. 3. A few changes to the Factory Store and Cactus Garden are being implemented, including a timed entry process, to ensure everyone’s safety. Pictures with Santa will be available on some evenings. Reservations are required this year. As always, admission is FREE. Click here for details.

Ethel M. Chocolate Holiday Cactus Garden

Downtown Summerlin
Downtown Summerlin kicks off the holiday season on Nov. 13 – Jan. 18 with outdoor ice skating at its Rock Rink which is located near the Pavilion at the Lawn. The 8,000 square foot ice rink will feature holiday music and a 40-foot decorated tree as a backdrop. Skate rentals start at $15 and reservations are required. You can do that at this link. There is also a festive holiday train that circles the ice rink. Train tickets cost $4.

Downtown Summerlin will also have thousands of decorative lights and strolling carolers on Friday and Saturday evenings. Unlike past years, no holiday parade is planned this year.

Downtown Summerlin Holiday Parade 2019 (KLAS-TV). There will be no parade this year.

Festival of Lights
Step into the magical world that is Festival Of Lights. Millions of lights perfectly synchronized to your favorite holiday music. Endless paths to stroll amidst the beautiful twinkling lights. Rides, games, and plenty of food options for you to enjoy. It’s located at Craig Ranch Park. Partial proceeds benefit Opportunity Village. Must make reservations. Tickets start at $15.
Click here for more information and to reserve a date.

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Nutcracker Extravaganza: Behind the Scenes
Nevada Ballet Theatre and DISCOVERY Children’s Museum have joined forces to present a behind the scenes look at The Nutcracker. Families are invited to celebrate the season and the magic of with this one-of-a-kind exhibit on display for a limited time only.  From Dec. 19 to Jan. 3, Museum attendees can view original Nutcracker show elements typically only seen from the stage. From the famous “flying rocking horse” to the well-known Cannon in the Battle Scene, these original set and prop pieces will be complemented by a display of over 20 costumes including handmade headpieces, tiaras and wigs worn by NBT’s professional company.  Click here for details.

(Photo credit: Nevada Ballet Theater)

 Area 15 Wanderland
Step inside an illuminated tree-lined village filled with extraterrestrial surprises, including a festive path of igloos with Insta-worthy holiday vignettes, an intergalactic art sleigh illuminated by hundreds of twinkling lights and pop-up retailers and food and drinks. Ticket price includes access to the igloo stroll, a printed and digital photo from the art car sleigh, and a cup of hot chocolate. Wanderland is open from Nov. 27 – Jan. 3. All guests are required to wear face masks and there is reduced capacity to allow for social distancing. Click here for more information.

(Photo credit: Area 15 Wanderland)

Sugar Palace holiday display
The Sugar Palace is the central piece of the “Winter Wonderland” holiday display in the lobby of Aria Hotel & Resort. The 15-foot sugar creation was created by hand and is made from edible ingredients. A skilled team of chefs spent four weeks crafting the palace using 4,000 pounds of sugar and several types of sugar work to create the bricks, snowflakes, swans, flowers and other pieces. It will be on display through Jan. 5.

WinterFest

Henderson’s special winter holiday presentation is brimming with an array of events through the month of December. The city plans to host some events virtually, including the lighting of its Christmas tree at 5 p.m. on Dec. 3 and “Sights and Sounds of the City,” holiday edition. Additional activities include the Holiday Light Display (Dec. 3-Jan.5), Pop-up Holiday Entertainment, Cookie Crawl and Letters to Santa. Some activities will require advance registration. Click here for more information and a complete list of events.

Letters to the North Pole

From Dec. 1-11, families can stop in and “mail” their children’s letters to Santa using Henderson’s decorative mailbox at Valley View Recreation Center. They can also send letters to the rec center, 500 Harris St., Henderson 89015. You’ll find out if your child’s been naughty or nice thanks to a special letter from Santa and Mrs. Claus! This event is geared for children ages 1-5. It will last Monday-Friday, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., and is $3.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas Story Time & Craft

If you and your family love the Grinch, you won’t want to miss this! The beloved character will make a special appearance at Valley View Recreation Center on Dec. 11. He’ll read his biography, and participants can make a Grinch ornament to hang on the tree. The event is slated from 10:30 a.m. to noon and is for all ages.

Reindeer Dash 5K Run and 1-Mile Walk

The holidays are a time brimming with good food and cheer … well, maybe a little too much food. Run off those extra calories and ring in the holiday season at the Reindeer Dash 5K Run & 1-Mile Walk along the Pittman Wash Trail! Families are urged to wear their best holiday apparel, and the first 300 registered participants are guaranteed a t-shirt. Social distancing guidelines will be adhered to, with small groups starting at staggered times, starting at 9 a.m. on Dec. 12. Runners will meet at the Silver Springs Recreation Center, 1951 Silver Springs Parkway, beforehand. All fitness levels are welcome! If you’d like to participate virtually, there will be a virtual fun run/walk you can do on your own. To register, click here or here. The event is geared for ages 5 and up.

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