GayDays are here again.
Through Sunday, GayDays Las Vegas is in the city to play by the pool and reach out to the LGBT demographic. In the United States, that’s an estimated 18.25 million people.
About 35,000 people are expected to attend this week’s fete, which includes pool parties, a business expo, brunch, a slot tournament and nighttime events at the Luxor, Tropicana, Rumor, Hard Rock Hotel and the Hard Rock Café on the Strip.
Most of the events are free to locals with ID until start time, then there’s a fee of $10 for some of the parties. Expo attendance is free and open to the public, but attendees must be at least 18.
The expo runs today, Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the Luxor and is sponsored by the Las Vegas-based QVegas Business Alliance. Macy’s and Jean Paul Gaultier are among 38 vendors taking up 10,000 square feet of space.
GayDays President Chris Alexander-Manley said the inaugural GayDays last year was “fantastic.”
“We’re looking forward to making this an annual event,” he said.
For 23 years, an annual GayDays celebration has been held in Orlando, Fla., and attracts upward of 170,000 people.
Manley said he thinks the Las Vegas outpost could be that large within five years because of the entertainment Las Vegas can offer attendees.
“The weather’s beautiful, and we’ve added more events around town. I think that’s going to increase the numbers,” he said.
Of this week’s attendance, 60 percent hail from the West Coast, 35 percent come from the East, and 5 percent are international visitors.
New this year is a nighttime event at Rumor — the Glow Pop Pool Party, featuring DJ Chi Chi LaRue — two dance events at Hard Rock Live and a party for dogs and owners Sunday at Rumor.
“We want to build a pet aspect here. People love their pets,” Manley said.
Next year, he said, he wants to add a tasting event that will mirror Orlando’s Taste of GayDays and will benefit Three Square.
“Even though we’re based in Orlando, we’re proud of the support we give both communities,” he said.
Lat year, GayDays Las Vegas generated $22,000 that was donated to The Center and to Las Vegas Pride.
For more information on GayDays events, visit GayDays.com.
GayDays Las Vegas will return to the city next September.
Contact reporter Laura Carroll at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-380-4588. Follow @lscvegas on Twitter.