Las Vegas hits its peak event season in the spring and summer months, and now that spring has officially sprung, some of the city’s best events are back and ready for action. Take a break from the windowless casinos and night-owl persona that thrives in the winter, and become an adventure seeker this April with one of these five events.
Winter means gaining 10 pounds, layering clothing and only exercising when absolutely necessary. Break your bad cold-weather habits in downtown Summerlin and get some human interaction in an area filled with live music, entertainment, food, shopping and drinks at the New Vista Wine Walks.
On your “healthy” walk, you can stop by over 20 tasting stations with cocktails, wine, sake and craft beer, making it well worth it to break away from whatever show is on Netflix. All the proceeds from the event benefit New Vista, a local charity that serves the intellectually disabled. Tickets are $30 in advance and $35 at the door. If you can’t make it on the 1st, the event is hitting Town Square Las Vegas on April 22nd.
Location: 1980 Festival Plaza Dr, Las Vegas, NV.
The Great Vegas Festival of Beer is not for the casual beer drinker. Sure, you’re welcome to go check it out and get smashed with everybody else, but this event is made for the beer brewer, devotee and connoisseur. Talks, demonstrations and guided tastings will take place over two days in the downtown and teach attendees the in and outs of brewing their own beer.
This year’s kick off event is sure to be the most highly attended; the Mad Craft Experience is an experimental competition between local craft brewers, taverns, chefs, and restaurateurs. In addition to more beer than anyone could ever drink, there will also be culinary participants competing in four different categories: best beer-infused savory dish, best beer-infused sweet dish, best use of beer ingredient and most creative beer infusion.
Tickets include unlimited food and beer samples. Festival tickets range from $40 to $60. The Mad Craft experience is $75 in advance and $80 at the door.
Location: Downtown Las Vegas
Hot rods meet motorcycles meet 50s pin-up girls at the annual Viva Las Vegas weekend, where around 20,000 attendees gather at the Orleans Hotel and Casino for music, cars, burlesque, and partying. Rock ‘n’ Roll and Rockabilly aficionados come from all over the world to hear music from over 75 bands and DJs.
The event features burlesque shows, the signature car show, a tattoo lounge, tiki pool parties, jiving classes and on-site weddings. For a full schedule of events click here. Tickets run from $35 to $200.
Location: The Orleans, 4500 W Tropicana Ave, Las Vegas
Do you remember that scene in “Dodgeball,” when Pirate Steve is walking down the street in Las Vegas, completely decked out in his seafaring garb and no one even notices because it’s Vegas? This is like that, only more kid-friendly.
Pirate Fest Las Vegas is a hands-on family-oriented weekend full of music, entertainers, vendors, food, games and activities. And it’s not just for pirates – it also incorporates fairies and steampunk elements as well. All kids get a free treasure map when they enter to participate in different tasks, like walking the plank and learning to sword fight, and everyone is encouraged to dress in their best pirate get-up (we’re thinking more “Pirates of the Caribbean” than “Captain Phillips”).
Tickets are $30 for a three-day pass and $15 for single-day entry. Bring a receipt from any Smith’s Food & Drug, Sonic Restaurant, Green Valley Grocery and receive a $2.00 discount on a single day entry.
Location: 628 W. Craig Rd , North Las Vegas
A non-profit dedicated to promoting Celtic heritage in Southern Nevada hosts an epic Highland Games event each year full of live music, plenty of food and drink and hey – they don’t even require you be Irish to take part. The main stage is full of authentic bagpipes, guitars, mandolins and tribal drum acts all weekend, including a prestigious bagpipe and drum band competition with over 100 participants. There will also be a highland dance contest and Scottish Heavy Athletics competition, where participants literally just throw heavy things, from stones to hammers to massive wooden logs.
If you want to get in on the weekend of competitiveness, enter the shortbread contest where professional bakers aren’t eligible for entry. Tickets range in price from $10 to $30.
Location: Floyd Lamb Park, 9200 Tule Springs Rd, Las Vegas
Photo credit: Frankie Tease Magazine (flickr) [https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/]
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