2020 PYRO-VISION: Take a blazing journey through the facts and fun of Vegas’ New Year’s Eve fireworks spectacle 

Officially, it’s America’s Party — our annual jumbo-size/souped-up/extra-energized entertainment extravaganza, this year ushering in that magically-numbered new year of 2020. 

And, ’natch, there’s the titanic topper: the massive, midnight Fireworks by Grucci display on the Strip. Join us as we wing it for a fly-by of the upcoming spectacle, aided by Newswire’s interviews with two experts: Tim Keener, LVE’s vice president/event and ticket operations (this is his 19th year coordinating our New Year’s Eve show); and the fire maestro himself, Phil Grucci, CEO/creative director of the generational family biz, Fireworks by Grucci and its manufacturing branch, Pyrotechnique by Grucci.

Best of 2019 NomineeFeatures

LIVIN’ LA ‘VIVA’ LOCA: Inside the Fremont Street Experience $32 million upgrade of ‘Viva Vision’ to an even bigger, brighter, bolder blowout

Add a few more Vs to “Viva Vision,” the world’s largest single LED screen under the canopy at the Fremont Street Experience: vital, vivid and vibrant — and unmistakably Vegas.

The result of an ambitious $32 million upgrade which began in May, the screen is seven times brighter and four times the previous resolution. Oblivious to the sun’s bright rays, it will run 24/7, something that wasn’t possible with the deteriorating lights of the old screen, last updated for $17 million in 2004.


A TRIP TO THE JOY STORE: Whimsies (and selfies) abound at Mandalay Bay’s Happy Place

There was only one moment when I felt anywhere close to my age during my journey through Happy Place at Mandalay Bay.

That moment came as I struggled to extract myself from the Rubber Ducky Bathtub of Fun, a yellow tub full of plastic balls in which I had willingly — if foolishly — submerged myself.

“It’s deeper than it looks,” a chipper Happy Place staffer said sympathetically as she leant me a hand.

Luckily, Happy Place is a space beyond embarrassment. Indeed, the interactive, immersive exhibit full of larger-than-life installations and sensory-themed rooms is a magical place, like Disneyland or Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory, minus the exorbitant entry fees and the Oompa Loompas.