Las Vegas toasts Repeal Day with booze, jazz and more booze

Tomorrow, December 5, marks the 80th anniversary of Repeal Day. What better way to mark the end of Prohibition than to enjoy a toast with a legal drink of alcohol. Across Las Vegas, bars and attractions will be raising a glass on this historic day.

Ground zero of the celebrations will be at The Mob Museum. Officially known as The National Museum of Organized Crime and Law Enforcement, The Mob Museum contains numerous exhibits that chronicle the rise of organized crime during Prohibition, so it is fitting that the museum host the largest celebrations.  The festivities include:

Toast the End of Prohibition
Time: 5:30 p.m. Dec. 5
Cost: Free

Former Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman leads this free toast, which includes a souvenir shot glass to remember the event.

VIP Speakeasy Party
Time: 6 – 7 p.m. Dec. 5
Cost: $65 per person

Roll down your stockings and grab your fedora, for this VIP party. Guests come dressed in 1920s clothing to enjoy the evening and to possibly participate in the costume contest later (see below). There will be live entertainment by 1920s-style cabaret dancers, a performance by The Broadway Rat Pack, unlimited samples of Prohibition-era cocktails, free draft beer all evening, hors d’oeuvres and free cocktails from 6 – 7 p.m. Plus you’ll have access to the museum and entry into the Backyard Bootlegger. You must be 21 or older to attend.

Bootlegger & Museum Admission
Time: 6 – 11 p.m. Dec. 5
Cost: $35 per person

Enjoy admission to the museum and the main party taking place in the restored courtroom. Guests will enjoy live entertainment by 1920s-style cabaret dancers, a performance by The Broadway Rat Pack and unlimited samples of Prohibition-era cocktail entries in the “Boss of the Bars” competition and free draft beer all evening. Guests in ’20s dress are encouraged to enter the costume contest. Guests must be 21 years and older.

“Boss of the Bars” Competition
Time: 8 p.m. Dec. 5

Cocktail masters from downtown Las Vegas nightlife scene will compete to be named “Boss of the Bars” and take home The Mob Museum’s official Repeal Day Cup award. Entrants will concoct Prohibition era cocktails that will be served to the judges and guests at the party.

Roaring ’20s Costume Contest
Time: 9 p.m. Dec. 5

Guests sporting Great Gatsby era fashion can enter the costume contest with prizes that include a 2-night stay at the Monte Carlo Resort and Casino.

Just a few steps across the street from the front door of The Mob Museum lies the Mob Bar, housed inside the Downtown Grand. The décor is reminiscent of a 1920s supper club, and here the staff re-creates the traditions of the Prohibition Era year round. The Mob Bar’s cocktail menu is certainly mob-worthy. In fact, two great picks for your Repeal Day festivities are the Sicilian Kiss and Bloody Italian.

The Last Word cocktail at Commonwealth.

The Commonwealth bar in downtown’s Fremont East Entertainment District is hosting “Throwback Thursday” on Dec. 5. The fun begins at 10 p.m., when the bar will be offering cocktails inspired by the Prohibition Era. Sip on such delights as the Last Word, Vieux Carré, Americano and Planter’s Punch. There will also be performances by The Moonshiners and professional swing dancers. So put on your best bootlegger or flapper getup, and come jump, jive an’ wail the night away.

At Echo & Rig Butcher and Steakhouse, located at Tivoli Village in northwest Las Vegas, Chef Sam Marvin and his crew will be celebrating from open ’til close (9 a.m. – 11 p.m.) on Dec. 5. Among the $3 Prohibition Era-inspired cocktails you can imbibe are The Real McCoy, The 18th Dies, The Somerset, Wet Under the Umbrella and The Blind Pig. You can also take advantage of a $1 beer featured on “Abner’s List.” For those who get hungry, the eatery will be offering several secret Repeal Day food deals as well – just whisper to your server that you want to know more about the “Speakeasy Specials.”

Party like it’s 1933 at Rx Boiler Room inside The Shoppes at Mandalay Place on Dec. 5 from 5 – 7:30 p.m. The restaurant is teaming up with Belvedere Vodka for a Prohibition Era-themed cocktail hour. In the bar and lounge areas, you can sip on complimentary Moscow Mules (one per person) and $5 vintage cocktails (while supplies last) created by lead barman Eric Smith. To take advantage of these special offers, however, you must whisper a top-secret word upon ordering (note: it can be found on Rx Boiler Room’s Facebook page). Guests are also encouraged to don Roaring ’20s attire.

The logo for Golden Gate's soon-to-be-renamed casino bar.

Finally, there’s no better place to celebrate the end of the booze-prohibiting 18th amendment than one of Las Vegas’ most historic hotels: the Golden Gate Hotel & Casino. Opened as the Hotel Nevada in 1906, this property actually endured the dark days of the Prohibition Era, which stretched from 1920 to 1933.  As a tribute to its past, the Golden Gate is planning to rename its original casino bar on Dec. 5. Come raise a glass – or rather a discreet coffee mug – to its new moniker, Bar Prohibition! All of the classic concoctions on the resort’s Prohibition Cocktail Menu (like the Flaming Side Car, The Prohibition or the Italian Kiss) are served this way because coffee mugs had been used by Prohibition drinkers to elude lawmakers. History buffs will also want to check out the glass liquor bottles in a collection of memorabilia displayed in the Golden Gate’s lobby. Dating back to the early 1900s, these bottles were found tucked into the hotel’s walls during a renovation. Who knows…they may have been part of a secret stash hidden by bootleggers!


I'm one of a rare breed of folks, a native Las Vegan. That's Las Vegan, not Vegan. Being born in Las Vegas has endowed me with crazy Vegas skills - must be all the exposure to neon. I'm a human casino GPS, celebrity locator (You never know who you'll meet in a casino elevator, right Richard Branson?) and tip calculator. My mom taught me probability and statistics with decommissioned casino dice. When I walk through a hotel, tourists think I work there. Maybe it's my smile, my purposeful walk or my friendly answers. Maybe it's just the black suit. But whatever the reason, gives me the chance to exercise my Vegas super powers every day. Now if I could just predict when Megabucks would hit... You can find me on Google+ and Twitter.