Superstars and fireworks will take Las Vegas into 2019

Published 12-31-2018

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LAS VEGAS (AP) - Tens of thousands of people are expected to ring in the New Year across Las Vegas, watching fireworks launch from the top of some of the city's iconic casino-resorts, attending superstar performances at various venues and participating in a celebratory midnight toast.

Officials have estimated more than 300,000 people will gather on the Las Vegas Strip for a celebration anchored by an 8-minute firework show, while thousands more will convene in the area's downtown entertainment district to enjoy live music. And for those who would rather head into 2019 indoors, Lady Gaga, Celine Dion, Gwen Stefani and other stars will help them do so in proper form at different venues along the world-famous corridor.

"No other city in the world does it like Las Vegas, and that's why it's called America's Party," Lawrence Weekly, chairman of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, said during a news conference announcing details of the celebrations. "Listen, some folks, and I know some of you guys, are going to look at me and say "Really, Weekly, the shame? But some folks stand outside in frigid cold just to watch a ball drop.' But where else in the world do you have a great concert all up and down and iconic boulevard?"

New Year's Eve is worth an estimated $403.1 million to the city, according to the convention and visitors authority. The agency responsible for promoting Las Vegas expected 318,000 people to travel to the city for the holiday and projected that 97 percent of the city's more than 147,000 hotel rooms would be booked.

Federal agents and local police will be out in force, with teams of police stationed inside most major casinos on the Strip, plainclothes officers in the crowd and snipers keeping an eye on things from rooftops. Officials are also banning backpacks, ice chests, strollers and glass items from the street celebrations as a safety measure.

The theme for this year's firework show is "Vegas Nights." Organizers are trying to emulate the sense of excitement of an evening in Las Vegas with fireworks in rich purple, green, gold and cherry red hues.

The 80,000 pyrotechnic firings will be choreographed to a custom soundtrack that includes Frank Sinatra's "Luck be a Lady," Lionel Ritchie's "All Night Long," Celine Dion's "I Drove All Night" and Gaga's "Marry The Night." The show is scheduled to begin 10 seconds before midnight at the Stratosphere casino-resort. Fireworks will then be launched from the Venetian, Treasure Island, Caesars Palace, Planet Hollywood, Aria and MGM Grand casino-resorts.

Inside, casino operators are pulling out all the stops for the celebration. Gaga will be at Park Theater at Park MGM casino-resort, Dion will be at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace, Stefani will perform at Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood and Maroon 5 will take the stage at the Mandalay Bay Events Center.

At the ticketed, lower-key celebration in downtown Las Vegas, 12 bands will play in four different stages set up along the Fremont Street entertainment district. Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman will lead a celebratory midnight toast.

The 80,000 pyrotechnic firings will be choreographed to a custom soundtrack that includes Frank Sinatra's "Luck be a Lady," Lionel Ritchie's "All Night Long," Celine Dion's "I Drove All Night" and Gaga's "Marry The Night." The show is scheduled to begin 10 seconds before midnight at the Stratosphere casino-resort. Fireworks will then be launched from the Venetian, Treasure Island, Caesars Palace, Planet Hollywood, Aria and MGM Grand casino-resorts.

Inside, casino operators are pulling out all the stops for the celebration. Gaga will be at Park Theater at Park MGM casino-resort, Dion will be at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace, Stefani will perform at Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood and Maroon 5 will take the stage at the Mandalay Bay Events Center.

At the ticketed, lower-key celebration in downtown Las Vegas, 12 bands will play in four different stages set up along the Fremont Street entertainment district. Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman will lead a celebratory midnight toast.

At the ticketed, lower-key celebration in downtown Las Vegas, 12 bands will play in four different stages set up along the Fremont Street entertainment district. Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman will lead a celebratory midnight toast.

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