An emoticon guide to Las Vegas’ top headlines
We see you 2021!
Party or Protest?
😷 🎉 🗓 Fremont Street Experience is under fire for allowing people to gather under the canopy on New Year’s Eve. Patrons are being charged a $25 “security fee” to enter the area, but elected leaders on Tuesday questioned whether the evening—which is expected to draw 14,000 (likely drunken) revelers—should go off as planned, considering the COVID-19 pandemic and all. Unlike previous large gatherings this year that have been allowed under the guise of protesting, there’s no question that the purpose of gathering downtown is to party. Why else would The Plaza be launching fireworks at midnight? Clark County Commissioner Marilyn Kirkpatrick had the best clap back.
Clark County commission chairwoman Marilyn Kirkpatrick slams New Year’s Eve “non-event” being held on Fremont Street Experience.— Michael Scott Davidson (@DavidsonLVRJ) December 29, 2020
Says they should charge participants $2,021 fee, instead of $25, to pay for $300-per-hour nurses in strained local hospitals.
The City of Las Vegas sought to clarify things, letting the public know via Twitter that Fremont Street Experience is “a public mall” (minus Hot Topic) and it is simply open for New Year’s Eve, with no festivities or entertainment planned.
There is a lot of misunderstanding concerning New Year’s Eve on the @FSELV. Please know, no event is planned. There will be no special program or performances of any type. This includes no live bands and no street performers.— City of Las Vegas (@CityOfLasVegas) December 29, 2020
Bottom line: People are gonna do what they’re gonna do, and unless rule-breakers are fined copious amounts of money that discourages them from breaking the rules, things aren’t going to get better anytime soon. If you’re going to spend New Year’s Eve on Fremont Street—a questionable destination during years when people had options—at least read the fine print.
Update: As of NYE, the Fremont Street Experience has been closed to all except hotel guests.
Circa Gets the Spotlight
🍸 🎊 📺 With fireworks on the Strip canceled, the just-unveiled Circa resort will get its moment in the spotlight on New Year’s Eve. Local CBS affiliate KLAS-TV will broadcast its 3.5 hour “Las Vegas New Year’s Eve Countdown to 2021” from Circa, with the Stadium Swim pool and Legacy Club rooftop lounge among the staging areas. The show will also air in 13 West Coast markets, presumably towns and cities where KLAS-TV owner Nexstar has TV stations, giving Circa a monster publicity boost going into the new year.
Could Season 4 Be the Golden Knights Year?
🏈 🏟 🏆 Now that the Raiders “don’t go for the touchdown” strategy has backfired, eliminating the franchise from playoff contention and exposing the ineptness of its coaching staff, let’s turn our attention to a hometown team that actually knows how to win an important game. Though the Golden Knights – who start the 2021 season on January 13 — have been met with playoff disappointment over their first three seasons, at least they made it to the playoffs, and they’re considered favorites to win the 2021 Stanley Cup. Those are some lofty expectations, but that comes with the territory after you curb stomp the league on your way to the Stanley Cup Finals in your first season. That’s another reason why Allegiant Stadium is on the other side of I-15; you don’t want the stench of failure floating over to The Fortress.
The Year That Wasn’t
😥 🎤 ✈️ It’s painful to be reminded that 2020 was supposed to be the year for Las Vegas. Aside from the usual festivities and conventions, the city was expecting a boost in exposure from the opening of Allegiant Stadium and the NFL Draft, as well as a bevy of all-new resident artists – Kelly Clarkson, Jonas Brothers, freakin’ Sting, among others – at the Strip’s biggest venues. All of those expectations were dashed early in the year, and the dismal passenger counts at McCarran Airport are the latest indication of just how hard the city’s tourism-based economy has taken a hit in 2020. Here’s to things turning around in 2021. It won’t happen fast, but hopefully it will happen. Then, we can all see Jonas Brothers together!