Las Vegas constantly re-shapes its image. While it has a more adult-centered image today, Vegas is still the “Entertainment Capital of the World” with its gambling casinos, lavishly decorated hotels and high-end entertainment for spectators of every age. As one of the top three leading destinations and wealthiest cities in the world, you can have a blowout time with the whole family when you book a charter jet to Las Vegas for a fabulous Labor Day weekend.
Family-Friendly Activities in Las Vegas
- Adventuredome: As the country’s largest indoor theme park, Circus Circus’ Adventurdome is 5.5 acres of games, carnival food and thrilling roller coasters. If you have a strong stomach, try the new El Loco, a ride that gives you a negative G-force experience. Be sure to get day pass for each person for unlimited thrills.
- Insanity: If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to spin with the force of 3-Gs while dangling 906 feet above the ground at 70 degrees, the Stratosphere’s Insanity ride has your fix. The ride gives you control over the thrills, so you can make it as tame or wild as you please.
- Big Apple: For something that’s easier on the stomach, New York-New York’s Big Apple coaster has trains that look like taxicabs that zoom you through stunning views of the Strip. Its steep hills and twists are more like a classic coaster than a thrill ride, but it will still get the adrenaline pumping.
The Best Attractions
- Animals: Open 24 hours a day, the aquarium at the Silverton Hotel and Casino (about 5 miles from the Strip) is home to about 5,000 exotic fish and mermaids (talented professional swimmers) who interact with them. For something a little feistier, stroll through the Shark Reef at the Mandalay Bay. Then enjoy the beautiful settings of the Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat at the Mirage to see lions, distinctive white tigers, and dolphin in their posh habitats complete with waterfalls. Book a Trainer for a Day session to give your family the opportunity swim with the dolphins.
- Grand Canyon tour: There’s no better way to see the Grand Canyon than from the sky. When looking into private plane rentals for your trip, be sure to book a helicopter ride over the canyon and Colorado River. Ask your hotel to pack a picnic for the family for when you land and take in the views.
The Best Shows
- Blue Man Group: The Blue Man Group at the Monte Carlo sprinkles its shows with quick-change illusions and family-friendly variety acts as they play their signature music using invented instruments. Lighting, special effects, bright colors, interactive features, humor and percussive tones will give your family a new appreciation for art. To get the most out of the experience, reserve the exclusive “Poncho” seats.
- Magic shows: It’s good to have your mind boggled once in a while. Family-friendly Las Vegas favorites include:
- Concerts: 2015 Labor Day weekend headliners include:
- 9/1-9/12: Olivia Newton-John at the Flamingo
- 9/1-9/27: For the Record: Baz at the Mandalay Bay
- 9/2-9/12: Celine Dion at Caesars Palace
- 9/2-9/9: Britney Spears at Planet Hollywood
- 9/4: Grand Funk Railroad at the Golden Nugget
- 9/4: Primus and the Chocolate Factory with the Fungi Ensemble at the Hard Rock Hotel ()
- 9/4-9/:6 Air Supply at the Orleans
- 9/4-9/6: Boyz II Men at the Mirage
The best way to do a family-friendly Vegas trip is to plan ahead. Keep in mind that kids and teens are not allowed on casino floors, so that awesome arcade at the back of the casino may be off limits. With the adult industry being mainstream, private car rentals to different attractions may be better for innocent eyes than walking down the Strip. Keep in mind that minors under 18 can’t be on the Strip without an adult after 9:00 p.m. on weekends and holidays. Since the pool clubs are likely to be packed over the Labor Day weekend, book a suite with a private pool at a Las Vegas casino resort.