Vegas ready to welcome 300k for NYE party on Strip, downtown

Metro Police next week will discuss heightened security measure in wake of Oct. 1 mass shooting

A couple shares a kiss on the Strip during New Year’s Eve in Las Vegas on Thursday, December 31, 2015.

Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman smiled and raised her hands as sparklers illuminated a main area of the Fashion Show Mall Thursday during an event to discuss plans for the annual New Year’s Eve fireworks show on the Strip.

This will be the 19th celebration Goodman and her husband Oscar have experienced together with one of the two holding the city’s mayoral position. But despite nearly two decades of fireworks, Goodman was adamant the experience is still “as special as ever.”

“It gets bigger and better, and of course the technology will be something else” Goodman said. “We’re alive and we want to show the world how to ring in the new year right.”

Officials didn’t answer questions regarding heightened security in the wake of the Oct. 1 mass shooting on the Strip. They deferred questions to Metro Police, who said they plan to discuss detailed security measures on Dec. 27.

With about 330,000 visitors expected for one of the world’s largest New Year’s Eve parties, police are advising people to take caution and plan ahead.

People driving to the Strip or downtown should arrive early, park outside the road closures and walk to make it easier to get out when the celebration is over, Metro Police Spokesman Aden Ocampo-Gomez said. He advised against driving at all, if possible.

“Uber, taxis and RTC buses are all better options,” Ocampo-Gomez said. “Leaving your cars at home is safer for everyone.”

About 150 fireworks per second will explode over the Strip to welcome 2018, said Scott Cooper of Fireworks by Grucci, a New York-based company coordinating the “America’s Party” fireworks show in Las Vegas for the 11th consecutive year.

More than 10,000 electrical circuits will fire over 80,000 loaded pyrotechnic devices on the rooftops of seven casino-resorts: Aria, Caesars Palace, MGM Grand, Planet Hollywood, the Stratosphere, Treasure Island and the Venetian.

The fireworks show will last about eight minutes, Cooper said.

Accompanying the display will showcase Bruce Springsteen’s rendition of “Auld Lang Syne,” followed by The Honeydrippers’ “Good Rockin’ at Midnight.” The show, billed as “Midnight in Vegas,” will continue with cuts from “Living After Midnight” by Judas Priest, “Midnight Special” by Little Richard, “Midnight Confessions” by the Grass Roots and “After Midnight” by Eric Clapton. The show will conclude with “In the Midnight Hour” by the Commitments.

The mobile Fireworks by Grucci app will provides the synchronized soundtrack in real time, and it will also be played on local radio station 92.3-FM and 97.1-FM

“This soundtrack is going to make people want to party,” Cooper said.

Off the Strip, downtown Las Vegas will also be hosting a New Year’s Eve celebration at the Fremont Street Experience. The downtown party will include live performances by local bands and music on the Viva Vision canopy.