Last Updated on May 14, 2022
Las Vegas is a land known for its entertainment industry. All of the major hotels & resorts offer a long list of shows that attract crowds daily, from the Cirque du Soleil lineup to magic shows, mind-reading, concerts, and more. Still, there’s another side to Las Vegas events, and that’s the many festivals and carnivals that Sin City is known for.
All throughout the year, there’s a non-stop lineup of Las Vegas events to fill your calendar and elevate your Las Vegas, NV experience. No matter when you’re planning your trip to Las Vegas, there’s always something going on. Here’s a taste of the largest and most well-known events in Las Vegas.
WSOP Las Vegas – Spring to Summer
The World Series of Poker, or more affectionately called WSOP, is an annual Las Vegas tradition. With all the casinos and gaming climate in Las Vegas, it makes perfect sense that this is the location of the king of poker tournaments.
- WSOP Las Vegas – Spring to Summer
- Las Vegas Foodie Festival – Spring
- San Genarro Feast Las Vegas – March/Varies
- Viva Las Vegas – April/Spring
- Las Vegas Beer Festival – April
- Las Vegas Epicurean Affair – May
- Electric Daisy Carnival Las Vegas – May
- Life Is Beautiful Las Vegas – September
- Las Vegas Bike Week – September/Fall
- Rise Lantern Festival – October
- Las Vegas Pride Parade & Festival – October
- iHeartRadio Music Festival – October/Fall
- Helldorado Days – Fall
- Motor Trend Auto Show Las Vegas – Date Varies
- Tips for Attending an Event In Las Vegas
- Location, Location, Location
- Plan for Time Away From the Festival or Event
- Know the Rules
- Plan Smartly
WSOP has been a tradition since the 1970s. With the best poker players in the world and a fan base that only keeps growing, WSOP always brings lots of crowds to the city. The WSOP tournament spans a couple of months as the players get whittled down to the very finest.
Anyone can participate in WSOP, providing they are of legal gambling age and can afford the substantial price tag of the buy-in. There are other WSOP events with buy-ins that don’t reach into the five-figure range. Plus, it’s free to watch the World Series of Poker, which is a fun activity for poker fans looking to pick up on a few skills.
Traditionally, WSOP has been held at the RIO hotel. In 2022 that all changes. For the first time, WSOP moves to the Las Vegas Strip, taking place in the Paris Hotel. In 2021 the event was held in the fall, but now it returns to its previous time slot, starting the late spring (usually May) and going until mid-summer.
Las Vegas Foodie Festival – Spring
While others are spending their day at the casino or wandering the Las Vegas Strip in search of some entertainment, you can be enjoying one of the largest food-centered festivals in the western United States. This festival, devoted entirely to foodies, has won awards for being among the very best in food festivals among all culinary events.
You’ll find a collection of specialty food vendors who are proud to create and offer their unique culinary masterpieces. There are also celebrity food trucks where you can taste and see first-hand the top-level skills of some of the most well-known celebrity chefs.
Of course, there’s a beer garden to help quench your thirst and cool down after a day in the hot Vegas sun, along with carnival games & rides and food contests for the truly adventurous.
San Genarro Feast Las Vegas – March/Varies
Sure spending the evening at the casino then heading off to enjoy one of the famous Las Vegas shows sounds like a great time. That is until you mention the San Genarro Feast. Then suddenly, a change of plans seems like a very delicious idea.
The San Gennaro Feast is a celebration of authentic Italian Food. The days-long celebration includes so many delicious eats, along with carnival attractions, concerts, kid-friendly activities, and lots of local talent that makes this one of the great Las Vegas events.
Viva Las Vegas – April/Spring
Viva Las Vegas is the ultimate rockabilly festival that happens every year in Las Vegas, NV. In 2022, Viva Las Vegas celebrates its 25th year of pure entertainment, and we promise this is the year that you’ll want to attend.
When spending the day at Viva Las Vegas, you can stop and listen to a live band, head on over to the tattoo room, join the pool party, tour the car show, check out some burlesque events, and maybe place your vote for the best girl in the rockabilly pin-up contents.
You visit Las Vegas to play, and Viva Las Vegas is where you’re going to have your desires heard, share a laugh or two, enjoy a beer, and more at this favorite of Las Vegas events.
Las Vegas Beer Festival – April
The Beer Festival can actually be considered two Las Vegas events. The main event is the Great Vegas Festival – Beer, Spirits, Food & Vibes. The sister even is the Downtown Brew Festival. Both events are located in Downtown Las Vegas, so they’re removed from the Las Vegas Strip (for those of you who prefer a more artistic, unique vibe when sipping on your brews).
Las Vegas is one of the food and beverage capitals of the world, so it doesn’t really surprise us that they know how to throw down at the Great Vegas Festival. Think along the lines of the best craft beers, expert mixologists, and culinary artists that are all just waiting to bring your tastebuds and love for a great brew to life.
The sister event, the Downtown Brew Festival, is produced by Motley Brews and offers a selection of hundreds of craft brews by more than sixty craft breweries. There are also local culinary artists at the festival to help fill your belly with something other than beer. Plus, there are live music concerts and entertaining events throughout the festival.
Las Vegas Epicurean Affair – May
Are you a lover of fine cuisine? If the answer is yes, then the Epicurean Affair should be at the top of your list of Las Vegas events. The Las Vegas Epicurean Affair brings together some of the finest culinary talents for a display that will have your mouth watering.
Located at the Red Rock Resort in Las Vegas, the Epicurean Affair gathers experts from the finest restaurants and the most popular bars and nightclubs, along with other major influencers in the Las Vegas culinary scene. You won’t regret passing up a reservation for your favorite restaurant and enjoying the night at this Las Vegas event instead.
The event is set poolside, so plan on a night of pure pleasure, gluttony, and indulgence. There are VIP tickets available that grant you early access to the event. Proceeds help to support the Nevada Restaurant Association and its educational and scholarship programs.
Electric Daisy Carnival Las Vegas – May
The Electric Daisy Carnival Las Vegas is a three-day non-stop party celebrating electronic dance music and everyone who loves the idea of dancing underneath an electric sky. The Carnival takes place in May every year at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The carnival is so amazing that it’s challenging to find an attendee that is emotionally left unchanged from the experience.
More than just concerts that go late into the night, the EDC creates a community among those that love EDM. In addition to the main stage performers, there are several smaller stages and even a Kinetic Stage where the vibe mellows as the crowd says goodbye to the performers in a very relaxed, chill ambiance. Food, merchandise, and other experiences can be found throughout the festival grounds.
You can check into any of the Las Vegas hotels while attending the EDC, but they also offer camping on-site. There are also several options for tickets, some offering an incredible, over-the-top VIP experience for the three-day event.
Life Is Beautiful Las Vegas – September
Life Is Beautiful Las Vegas is a three-day celebration that’s part hot music concerts, part comedy club, part art display, and a full-blown festival celebration of culture. Since 2013, the Life Is Beautiful Event has been one worthy of marking on your calendar.
The Life Is Beautiful event celebrates everything positive in life, offers a healthy dose of optimism, pushes you to step outside your comfort zone, and helps lift the Downtown Las Vega area while also paying tribute to everything that makes the downtown district great.
Artists who have graced the stage and performed hits in the past at Life Is Beautiful include Billie Eilish, Green Day, Young Thug, Ludacris, and Modest Mouse. Comedy shows that have been on the stage include Trevor Wallace, Sarah Cooper, Sam Jay, and Bob the Drag Queen.
There’s also lots of yummy food that you don’t want to miss. There’s cuisine from all over the world that’s provided by local Las Vegas restaurants. There are also cocktails, so you don’t have to worry about getting thirsty! Regular and VIP tickets are available. Mark your calendar, so you don’t miss this event!
Las Vegas Bike Week – September/Fall
Las Vegas Bike Week, also called Bikefest, is one of the longest-standing Las Vegas events. Bikers and motorcycle enthusiasts from around the country and around the world gather in Las Vegas to show off their choppers, lust after others and share in the camaraderie of the biker community.
Las Vegas Bike Week began more than twenty years ago and remains one of the most unforgettable festival experiences in Las Vegas. There’s never a dull moment, with events that include live band concerts, streets lined with a collection of the hottest choppers, bikini contests, and a kick-off party at Hogs & Heifers Saloon. Mark this event on your calendar and plan early. This is one of those Las Vegas events that quickly fills up hotels around the city.
Rise Lantern Festival – October
The Rise Lantern Festival is one of the most memorable Las Vegas events. Every year in October, thousands of people gather in the middle of the desert to release beautiful lanterns into the sky. They’re completely biodegradable, and a special crew comes along after to clean the fallen lanterns from the desert landscape.
The release of the lanterns into the sky beats out any of the Las Vegas shows or even the lights along Las Vegas Blvd. All attendees are provided with a lantern and are encouraged to write something that’s meaningful to themselves on it. Some people simply sign their name and the date. Others pay tribute to loved ones who are gone, create poetry, share dreams or promises to themselves, or maybe even write something that will make someone smile or laugh,
Then right before sunset, the crowd is gathered and instructed on how to release their lanterns. The lanterns are then sent into the sky, all in unison, in a beautiful, soul-satisfying display over the Nevada desert.
Las Vegas Pride Parade & Festival – October
The Pride Parade & Festival are among the biggest Las Vegas events that the city sees each year. Las Vegas Pride is a weekend devoted to the LGBTQ+ community, along with celebrating love, acceptance, inclusion, and diversity.
The weekend starts with the Pride Parade, which takes place near the Fremont Street Experience in Downtown Las Vegas. You can check their website for the exact route that the parade follows. Come early and find your spot so that you’re not waiting behind the crowd, hoping to catch a glimpse at the amazing collection of floats. After the parade, the downtown area turns into a party that lasts until the early hours of the morning.
The following day is the Pride Festival. During the event, you can catch shows on one of the main stages, visit booths, learn about the community, share your personal experiences, and connect while celebrating your true self.
The Pride Parade & Festival are family-friendly Las Vegas Events (although Fremont Street isn’t exactly family-friendly after dark). The Pride parade is free for everyone to attend.
iHeartRadio Music Festival – October/Fall
The iHeartRadio Music Festival is one of the premier Las Vegas events for music lovers. With a lineup of some of the hottest musical artists from across all genres of music, this festival is a collection of Las Vegas shows you don’t want to miss.
Held at the T-Mobile Arena, which is centrally located right on the Las Vegas Strip, the festival is typically held on a Sat & Sun in October or at another select date in the fall. Previous lineups for the concerts have included Billie Eilish, Coldplay, Dua Lipa, Darius Rucker, Nelly, Weezer, Gabby Barret, and many more. This event is a fabulous collection of top musical artists, plus the hottest emerging talent in the music industry.
There’s also the fact that the T-Mobile Arean in Las Vegas is just a spectacular place to catch live band concerts or other types of Las Vegas shows. This festival is said to be one of the largest multi-genre music festivals in the world.
Helldorado Days – Fall
Helldorado Days, also called Las Vegas Days, is a celebration of the western spirit of Las Vegas. Typically held in Downtown Las Vegas, this festival includes rodeos, a parade, a wild west gunfight reenactment, fashion shows, and more.
Of course, the rodeo and parade are the highlights you don’t want to miss. In the past, the Helldorado parade has done a bit of a reverse on the typical parade. Instead of the floats passing through the street, they were stationary at the sides of the road, and parade-goers walked through, choosing their favorites. No matter how the parade goes down, you can bet that they create something unique and unusual each year.
Helldorado Days typically take place in the Fall. Plan ahead to attend and show how proud you are of your Las Vegas spirit and the city’s journey from small-town to hospitality and entertainment center of the world.
Motor Trend Auto Show Las Vegas – Date Varies
Motor Trend puts on the best auto shows, no matter where the destination is. Still, we’re partial to the Motor Trend Las Vegas Events. It’s here that automobile lovers can enter a dream world featuring the newest, hottest cars showcasing a collection of automotive design and inspiration.
Attendees will get the chance to experience an up-close view of the newest models, visit booths, participate in events, and more. Make sure you mark your calendar for one of the best shows in the world of automotive innovation.
Tips for Attending an Event In Las Vegas
Las Vegas is a huge city, which means there’s usually some extra planning that goes into attending an event there, regardless of whether it’s a concert at the T-mobile Arena or an open-air festival in one of the parks. Here are a few tips and tricks for attending events in Las Vegas.
Location, Location, Location
It’s always important to know the location of the event, but even more so if you’re not that familiar with Las Vegas. Traffic can be a bear in some areas, especially along Las Vegas Blvd, so you want a good idea of where your event is and how to get there.
For events that are held on or near Las Vegas Blvd, you can sometimes easily walk, but there’s also a tram system that is great for traveling from one end of the Strip to the other. If your event is located on Las Vegas Blvd, it’s best to stay in a hotel right on the Strip so that transportation is less of an issue.
The downtown area of Las Vegas is also popular for events. Fortunately, Downtown Las Vegas also offers lots of hotels to choose from. Many offer the same amenities as hotels on the Strip, including a casino, pools, spa, etc.
Plan for Time Away From the Festival or Event
Some festivals, like the Electric Daisy Carnival, are more immersive, making it easy to spend your entire time in Las Vegas at the festival grounds. They offer camping on-site and a place to park your RV, making it very tempting not even to try to leave. For other events, you might be interested in exploring more of what Las Vegas offers.
If you’re interested in some of the more popular events and venues in Las Vegas, you might prefer staying at a hotel on Las Vegas Blvd. This is where the major, well-known resorts are located. Think along the lines of the Bellagio, Cosmopolitan, Caesars Palace, and the Mirage Las Vegas.
At the hotels along the Strip, you’ll be able to get tickets to popular shows like Cirque du Soleil, hypnosis shows like the Mentalist, magic shows, dinner theaters, and more. Of course, you don’t have to actually be staying at the hotel where these events take place, but it definitely makes life easier if you are.
The downtown area also offers lots to do and see in Las Vegas. From the Fremont Street Experience to art installations, vibrant casino scene, cultural attractions, and more. Many festivals, events, and parades are also held downtown, so there’s plenty to do and see if you book your stay in a downtown Las Vegas location.
Know the Rules
Because events in Las Vegas draw such a crowd, there’s often a long list of rules that you should familiarize yourself with before attending the event. Check the website event to find out details about what’s included with your tickets, if there’s anything you need to sign or a form that needs to be completed, age restrictions, and what you can or can’t bring into the event.
Finally, keep in mind that events in Las Vegas can be different from events elsewhere, and therefore you should plan accordingly. For example, outside events mean you’re going to spend some time out in the hot sun. Make sure to layer on the sunscreen and see if you’re able to bring sunscreen and hydration with you, or if those things can be purchased at the festival grounds.
Availability of rooms is another issue. Hotels and resorts fill up fast during festivals and events, and also prices can skyrocket when a major event is in town. The earlier you can book your reservations, the better, and you might get a better deal if you check in on a Wed or Thur instead of waiting for the weekend. Also, remember to get your tickets as early as you can, because those often sell out too.
Have the Time of Your Life at the Best Las Vegas Events
The calendar of Las Vegas events is one of the best in the world. There’s something for everyone in this very welcoming city. The next time you’re looking for a getaway that’s filled with fun and adventure, make Las Vegas, NV, your vacation destination.