LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — As thousands flock to the Thomas & Mack Center for the triumphant return of ‘National Finals Rodeo,’ experts are citing the event’s major boost to our recovering economy.
The energy was electric Friday night, as boots, broncs, and 10-gallon hats took over the city.
“We are so excited to be here,” Jackie Neff, who was visiting Las Vegas from Texas, said.
“This is my first rodeo,” another NFR attendee admitted to 8 News Now; and while it may be her first rodeo, it’s certainly not Southern Nevada’s.
Our city has hosted the popular event since 1985, except for 2020, when COVID-19 concerns caused it to go dark.
“Real glad to have it back here in Las Vegas,” another NFR attendee told 8 News Now.
Those who spoke with 8 News Now Friday said they were itching to get back in the saddle after last year’s hiatus.
The NFR’s footprint also pumps a lot of money into our local economy, as over 100,000 people descend from around the country.
Brian Gordon, a principal with local company Applied Analysis, told us events like this have always been important, but they are now crucial, as we work to bring things back to pre-pandemic levels.
“Really, it’s a critical component to the local economy,” Gordon said of NFR. “There are a lot more special events happening,” he continued. “And that is helping to fill in the holes where we are still lagging, on things like convention travel or international travel.”
Therefore, Las Vegans who have plans to head out and soak in what many call the ‘Super Bowl of Rodeo,’ can know this excitement is roping in an even brighter future here locally.
“To be with everybody,” Meghan Weeks concluded of the NFR. “And everybody’s spirits are so happy.”
The National Finals Rodeo kicked off on December 2nd and continues through December 11th.
‘Cowboy Christmas’ has also returned to The Las Vegas Convention Center.
For more information on the NFR experience, click HERE.