For the first time in two years, it really feels like the holiday season here in Las Vegas, New Mexico. Residents showed up in large numbers Saturday night to watch the tree lighting ceremony and electric light parade, and they were not disappointed. 

The entire event felt more like a celebration of the return to normalcy in the downtown district of Las Vegas. Not only did these annual events return after a notable absence in 2020, but it also marked the first event to be held on the newly paved Bridge Street, completed last week. There were plenty of reasons to celebrate. 

We would like to thank the city for putting on such a great event, and we would also like to thank everyone who took part in the parade, providing a great experience for people of all ages in the city. 

The event really felt like the first true kickoff to a holiday season in two years, and we hope everyone takes advantage of the opportunity to shop local this month. There are plenty of great gifts available all over the city, and especially on Bridge Street and in the Plaza area. This city has all kinds of unique gifts that you wouldn’t be able to find at any of the big box stores in Santa Fe or Albuquerque, which may be seen as the more traditional holiday shopping spots. 

It’s more important to shop local this year than perhaps any other year. Our local stores have been hit hard, first by the COVID-19 pandemic, which so negatively impacted all of us, and then by the extensive Bridge Street construction project, which made it difficult for our local stores to attract customers from July until now, with the paving finally complete. These stores are all looking for ways to boost revenue again and make up for a lot of lost time. And the timing could not be more perfect, with holiday shopping well underway. Shopping local could help you check a lot of items off your list this year, and could help make the holiday season a joyous time for our local business owners. 

There is no doubt that the past two years have been incredibly difficult on everyone. Nothing has been the way it should be, as every part of life has been turned upside down. That’s why we really need to embrace the holiday season this year, and enjoy every moment. Now more than ever, we realize how much can be taken away from us, and how much that can impact the holidays. 

There are a lot of holiday events happening in Las Vegas this month. We encourage everyone to head out on the town, support local organizations and groups, and get in the holiday spirit. We didn’t get to enjoy the season the way we wanted to last year, so let’s take full advantage now. This weekend was a great kickoff to the season, but there is plenty more excitement to come. 

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