Las Vegas starts to party as 2021 ends — BLOG

Check in with us all night as our team covers New Year’s Eve in Las Vegas from the Strip to Fremont Street.

7:46 p.m

Bellagio fountain show canceled

Winds whipped through the south Strip, and traffic was still moving south of Flamingo Road. A few wayward tourists crossed the seemingly empty street, and a police car quickly directed them back off the street.

The wind also had a major impact at the Bellagio. At 7:45 p.m., passersby were greeted by an unfortunate announcement — the fountain show scheduled for 8 p.m. had been canceled. It was unclear if later shows would go on.

Showgirls’ feathers fluttered in the wind, and people had their celebratory hats blown off their heads as they continued to brave the elements.

— Jonah Dylan

7:45 p.m.

‘It’s a good time’

Married couple David and Lisa Miller posed for a selfie overlooking the Strip. David wore blinking 2022 glasses; his wife had a crown marking the festivities.

“It’s a good time,” David Miller said. “I love Vegas.”

The Los Angeles couple celebrated New Year’s Eve here five years ago, “but it seems kind of dead right now,” he said.

Bringing up the weather, David Miller said it was not cold — after all, the couple celebrated in New York City a few years ago, when the temperature was around 10 degrees.

The couple were heading to an off-Strip bar to meet up with a group of friends and had 11 p.m. dinner reservations.

— Ricardo Torres-Cortez

7:33 p.m.

Strip performers in action

Despite the winds whipping up, many of the usual Strip performers were out to try to capitalize on the influx of pedestrians.

Within 20 feet of each other were a pair of scantily clad showgirls and a duo dressed as Mickey Mouse and a character from “Paw Patrol.”

Both groups declined to speak about their plans for the evening.

The group of showgirls seemed to draw the most attention, taking several photos with partygoers — for cash tips, of course.

— Mick Akers

7:21 pm

Entertainment continues on Fremont Street

A Flock of Seagulls closes out its set with “I ran.” The crowd sings along — loudest at the chorus and encouraged by Mike Score.

People hold up their phones, dance and bounce along. Hands go up on the final note, followed by cheers as Score exits the stage.

As the crowd disperses, Rene and Sheri King and their friend Aman Tad remain waiting for The Village People to take the stage.

The Kings have homes in California and Las Vegas and travel all over. Tad lives in Everett, Washington, and is visiting Las Vegas for the first time.

Tad was born and raised in Ethiopia and is sporting a Seattle Seahawks chain. Rene and Sheri King are sporting festive hats.

— David Wilson

7 p.m.

Law enforcement on the Strip

Law enforcement finished clearing the Strip while revelers were braving a frigid, breezy evening with drizzling rain.

At least one couple was told by a Las Vegas police officer that they would not be allowed at the festivities with their stroller.

Police officers and the Nevada National Guard were stationed along Flamingo Road.

— Ricardo Torres-Cortez

6:50 p.m.

Reports of wind, rain

Rain is falling on the Strip at Tropicana Avenue, and wind has been stirring up dust near the Wynn Las Vegas.

— Jonah Dylan and Katelyn Newberg

6:43 p.m.

A Flock of Seagulls performs

A couple sways arm-in-arm away from the large crowd gathered in front of the First Street stage at the Fremont Street Experience as A Flock of Seagulls performs.

Mike Score sings and plays the keyboard in a black jacket and shiny, tight black pants that reflect the pink light illuminating the stage. Score is projected onto the canopy that runs the length of the Fremont Street Experience.

— David Wilson

5:50 p.m.

Strip closure begins

Officials have begun closing a large portion of the Las Vegas Strip as an estimated 300,000 revelers descend on the city.

The Metropolitan Police Department expected the Strip to be completely closed to vehicle traffic by 8 p.m. between Spring Mountain Road and Mandalay Bay Road.

Eight hotel-casinos are scheduled to participate in an eight-minute fireworks show at midnight, but weather could put a damper on the celebration.

— Carri Geer Thevenot

The wind out here is no joke tonight. That’s dust blowing around in front of the Wynn. The fireworks could be delayed up to an hour if the wind is strong enough.

— Katelyn Newberg (@k_newberg) January 1, 2022

5:45 p.m.

Wedding bells

Stephanie and David Kereluk planned to come to Las Vegas to get married on New Year’s Eve, and at 12:31 p.m. today, they did just that. Stephanie Kereluk was still in her wedding dress and ready for a fun post-wedding celebration at the Fremont Street Experience.

The couple traveled from Grayling, Michigan.

“It’s a second wedding, but this was perfect. I loved every minute of it,” Stephanie Kereluk said.

— David Wilson

Winds picking up on the Strip as crews work to shut down the Strip by 8 pm. #vegas #vegastraffic #nye2021

— Mick Akers (@mickakers) January 1, 2022

5:35 pm

Lining up at Fremont Street Experience

Susan and Terry Eckstein from Appleton, Wisconsin, were the first two people in line to get into the Fremont Street Experience New Year’s Eve party, which was to start at 6 p.m. This is their first trip to Las Vegas.

“It just seems like a raucous time,” Terry Eckstein said.

They’re most excited to hear A Flock of Seagulls perform as one of the bands making up the ’80s and ’90s themed party.

Terry Eckstein started humming the band’s classic “I ran.”

— David Wilson

UNPLANNED FIREWORKS?: It looks like someone is setting off fireworks in front of @Bellagio fountains. I count five have gone off now. This is my view from Flamingo and #LasVegas Boulevard. #RJNow

— James Schaeffer (@jamesmschaeffer) January 1, 2022