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Off-Track: Fremont Street

Watch the Light shows, not your wallet

Here’s another idea for entertainment in your off-hours at the upcoming NAB Show.

Talk about making lemons into lemonade. It used to be that visitors to Las Vegas avoided the old downtown area unless they were looking for $5 craps tables and some trouble. But these days the area, rechristened the Fremont Street Experience, is a veritable playground for both adults and kids alike, and a refreshing change of pace from waterfalls, pirate ships and rainforests.

The five-block pedestrian covered mall features live music, shopping, street performers, dining and a nightly light and sound show. The fun-loving crowds and bead throwers make it feel a bit like New Orleans during Mardi Gras.Don’t think twice about booking a room on Fremont; lodging is one of its best features, as many of the hotels and casinos are touting renovations such as new rooms at The Golden Nugget; and The Fitz, which recently opened a “trend-setting” restaurant called The Courtyard Grill and Buffet.

One caveat: Because the Fremont Street Experience is literally (and figuratively) a departure from the Strip, it can translate to a semi-pricey cab ride depending on where you’re coming from (but no more than $20-25). But with the good deals to be had on Fremont, the cab will likely be the most expensive part of your evening.

425 Fremont Street;