Nevada, Las Vegas prepare for millennium bash

LAS VEGAS -- Barbra Streisand will be there. So will Elton John and Tina Turner.

And so will another 750,000 or so visitors who are expected to jam the Strip here on New Year's Eve.

In typical fashion, Las Vegas and the entire state of Nevada have big plans not only for that evening but also for longer-running millennium celebrations.

Nevada's celebration will last for more than a year. It is believed to be the longest running of any state in the U.S. ASTA declared Las Vegas its most-requested destination booking for the millennium celebration. And the city has geared up for the event. It should have 122,000 hotel and motel rooms by the time the celebration begins.

Agents who want information about Las Vegas hotels that are taking reservations for millennium stays can click on www.lasvegas24hours.com to get a list of toll-free numbers. The site, sponsored by the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, does not provide specific details such as prices, however.

Usage of the Las Vegas Web site is increasing as the countdown continues. In 1998, an average of 4,331 users visited the site daily, compared with 7,263 users per day this year.

Nevada state tourism officials recently outlined the 15-month Making Millennium Magic campaign that will begin on Nevada Day Weekend, Oct. 30, and conclude on Jan. 15, 2001, the birthday of Martin Luther King. "We will help make the millennium extra special by giving people 15 months of events and activities that offer something to suit every taste," said Nevada Lt. Gov. Lorraine Hunt.

Nevada's new official Web site for the millennium can be found at www.2000nevada.com and is also accessible through its regular Web site, www.travelnevada.com. The Web site offers a searchable database of statewide events, millennium-related travel packages, a virtual millennium gift shop with official merchandise, a logo and other information.

Quick information about the state's millennium celebration is available by calling (877) 2000-NEV. International inquiries can be made at (775) 687-4322. Callers can request a 15-month Millennium Countdown Calendar.

New Nevada events during the millennium include the nation's longest off-road race, Nevada 2000, running July 8 to 15.

It will involve a 2,000-mile loop around the state, beginning and ending in Las Vegas. Returning old favorites include the Cowboy Poetry Gathering next January in Elko.

In Las Vegas, Barbra Streisand is appearing New Year's Eve at the 13,000-seat MGM Grand Garden in an engagement that her manager, Martin Erlichman, said could be her final public performance. It will be her first public performance since the conclusion of her 1994 six-city tour. Ticket prices range from $500 to $1,500, with Golden Circle tickets at $2,500.

Elton John and Tina Turner will perform on Dec. 30 in the newly remodeled Thomas & Mack Center on the UNLV campus. Tickets are priced at $101.50, $201.50, $401.50 and $601.50, including parking and taxes, but not including a $3 ticket handling fee.

Nevada Commission on Tourism
Phone: (800 237-0774
Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority
Phone: (702) 892-0711
MGM Grand
Phone: (800) 929-1111
Thomas & Mack Center
Phone: (702)895-3900

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