Las Vegas truly is America's entertainment capital and there's never a shortage of things to see and do. But besides the permanent sights and attractions, there are a slew of fun annual events for residents to attend. These are also a great way for newcomers in Vegas to mingle with locals and meet travellers from all over the world.
Annual events in Las Vegas
Las Vegas Sevens (March)
One of the highlights on the international Sevens Rugby calendar, the Las Vegas leg attracts tens of thousands of people each year who all come dressed in wacky costumes and party the weekend away. Even non-rugby fans enjoy the spectacle held at the Sam Boyd stadium, as the week leading up to the main event includes pep rallies, a beer festival, a Parade of Nations and more.
Vegas Uncork'd (April)
One for the gourmands, this long weekend is one of the best on the culinary calendar. Vegas residents and visitors from all over are treated to tastings, banquets, workshops and other foodie delights. The festival is a veritable who's who of celebrity chefs: catch Gordon Ramsay in action at a Master Series dinner, Guy Savoy at the Grand Tasting, and Guy Fieri wowing crowds on The Strip.
Electric Daisy Carnival (May)
Usually held on the third weekend in May at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, this EDM spectacle attracts more than 400,000 people to Sin City. Held over several days, the festival includes a series of concerts and sets by some of the world's best DJs.
World Series of Poker (June)
One can't live in Vegas and not attend at least one World Series of Poker events. Held at the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino on famous Flamingo Road, the competition attracts high-stakes gamblers and celebrities competing for jaw-dropping purses. Besides the World Championship Event, there are daily games with entry stakes ranging from USD 125 to USD 5,000. But for those who would just like to look on as others win (and lose) big, it's free to spectate.
Life is Beautiful Festival (September)
At the Life is Beautiful Festival there's something for everyone to enjoy. Famous bands grace stages in downtown Las Vega, there are demonstrations by celebrity chefs, a speaker series, art displays, performances by the likes of Cirque du Solei, and much besides. It's a fantastic way to get acquainted with Vegas and its residents, and new arrivals in the city will be made to feel right at home with the festival's friendly neighbourhood atmosphere.
Sin City turns into Scary City over Halloween when everyone dresses up and parties the night away. Famous attractions embrace the holiday's spooky vibe, and places such as the famous Adventuredome Theme Park becomes 'Fright Dome' with scary rides, exhibits and other Halloween-themed quirks.
New Year’s Eve (December)
Other than New York City's Times Square, The Strip in downtown Las Vegas attracts the most revellers on New Year's Eve (as many as 400,000). Fireworks, pyrotechnics, music shows and all manner of parties bring in the new year. The whole strip is cordoned off, meaning the city's traffic is a nightmare on NYE, but this shouldn't hold back those who plan to go big.