Vegas, Baby (Day 3 of 3)

Alright — here’s the final post from this trip.

The Normandie Motel was demolished more than 10 years ago.  This sign was saved and restored by The Sign Museum.  Here’s a shot of the sign at the “Boneyard” before they restored it:

The sign is now in the median north of the Fremont Experience — as part of the National Scenic Byways Program:



This guy is on Fremont St. at the Downtown Container Park.  He’s pretty impressive at night which I didn’t get to see.  He throws flames from his antennae:

This mantis is 35 feet long and is installed on the roof of a car.  It came from the Burning Man Festival:



Two great signs from the Western Hotel:




Sad but magnificent:



The Peter Pan Motel is long closed but the sign was restored a few years ago.  There was a sign there this weekend saying that the motel is being converted into senior apartments:




This sign is reportedly 123 feet tall:


Mesmerizing at night:



One of my fave signs in town:



Last photo for this post.  The Ambassador Motel is long gone and this sign was pretty skanky and endangered.  Luckily, it was restored & adapted for the Life is Beautiful festival last year:



The dogs and I will be back on the road real soon.  June 7 – 22.  Two weeks!  We’ll be heading to Utah.  If things go well, we’ll be making some stops in Idaho as well.  I’m not sure how much I’ll be blogging & Flickring during the trip.  Maybe I’ll hang on to everything until I get back & fire off daily posts & Flickr uploads like I did for this trip.

Don’t forget — lots of photos from this trip over at Flickr where I post the “purty-er” stuff:



19 thoughts on “Vegas, Baby (Day 3 of 3)

  1. you done good as usual,thanks,as I travel around the states through you ,sparkle and the dogs

    • Yes. I’m conflicted about seeing signs like the Bow & Arrow all spruced up to where they almost look brand new. It’s nice to have the neon all working — but I think I prefer seeing the wear and tear and faded paint during the day. Although they did a really great job with the Ambassador and Bow & Arrow Motel signs.

      • Much of the time the trouble is a sloppy restoration…one would often prefer it stayed in its worn state . However it’s good to know some signs are restored nicely !

  2. Lots of great stuff! The blue skies make them all the better. I really like the Western Hotel and the Alicia Motel signs. Maybe someday the Alicia will be beautifully restored.

    • Yes, I was there when it was simply the Boneyard — and I was there on this trip. I put a couple photos from the tour at Flickr during this trip:
      The Neon Museum
      The Neon Museum

      — and I’ll be adding all the photos I took there to my website ( in the next couple of months.

      Glad you are enjoying my blog & website.


  3. Great great stuff as usual. I’ve been to Vegas a few times but don’t recall a lot of these so it’s great to see them. I was lucky enough to stay at the Stardust before it was torn down and I just stood and watched that magnificent sign at night. I had a lousy camera at the time so no good pics. Curses! Thanks for sharing all your great pics and looking forward to your next trip!

    • Thanks — glad you are enjoying my blog. I try to include stuff at the blog & Flickr that are a mix of known & obscure subjects. There are remains of the Stardust Hotel sign at the Sign Museum.

  4. I think the saddest thing is that because of the planned revitalization (or Zappo’s-ification?) of Fremont is that pretty much ALL of the motels are now boarded up and fenced off. I fear for what may happen to them all.

    • Zappo’s or not, I think what’s happening to Fremont St. is inevitable after what’s become of The Strip and the whole Fremont Experience stuff. At least the City has come to realize that the old signs are touristy and is making accommodations for them.

      Back in 2011, when I was writing an article about the Blue Angel Motel and the supposed saving of the statue:

      — I was alarmed to find out that the statue & signs’ outcome was entirely up to the developer. After talking with the sign shop connected with the possible new “Gateway” location for the statue, it sounded like the plans had fallen through. Just as alarming — I spoke with the Neon Museum about it and found out that they have very little funding for rescuing signs. Just moving signs like that to storage costs quite a lot. So, they said they could only save it if the developer was willing to take it down & deliver it to them.

      As for the buildings — I think tourists want to either stay at the glitzy places on The Strip or cheaper places like the Motel 6s. Mom & Pop places are pretty much doomed to eek by as low income flophouses or more rarely, by some miracle, fixed up as condos. Yes, all of it is very sad indeed.

  5. I can see that I really do need to check out the sign museum in Vegas some day. Your comment about Utah caught my eye as I’ll be there at somewhat the same time. My target is this year’s Lincoln Highway Association conference in Tooele, June 17-21.

    • The Neon Sign Museum is definitely worth checking out. Best to make reservations. They have night time hours there, too.

      Our time in Tooele/SLC might overlap. Shoot me an email ( a few days ahead and I’ll have a better idea.

    • I’ve been to Vegas a few times. I’m busy adding photos to my website ( right now from there. What I post to the blog and Flickr is just a tiny sampling of what you’ll eventually find there.

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