Everything You Need to Know About First Fridays of the Month at Fremont Street Experience

July 2, 2014

Things get interesting in downtown Las Vegas on the first Friday of each month. That’s because of a wildly popular downtown event called, wait for it, First Friday.

Read more about the official First Friday.

The crowds that result from First Friday mean additional visitors to Fremont Street Experience as well. We love that, of course, but a big influx of guests means special measures are needed to ensure everyone has a safe time on Fremont Street.

FSE

First Fridays of the month are sort of like this at Fremont Street Experience. Rebecca Black, it turns out, knew what she was talking about.

Throughout the summer, first Fridays of the month are considered special events at Fremont Street Experience.

These first Friday of the month dates have special rules, and guests younger than 21 aren’t permitted on the Fremont Street Experience mall beginning at 10:00 p.m. Access restrictions typically end at 4:00 a.m. (early Saturday morning).

First Friday sweep

Between 5:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m., the Fremont Street Experience mall is closed to all pedestrians for a security sweep. It’s freaky.

On first Fridays of the month, special access gates are set up along Fremont Street Experience, and those wishing to enter need to present a valid I.D.

Once an I.D. checks out, a wristband is issued, and guests are good to enter one of the world’s biggest block parties. Casino customers also get wristbands as they exit casinos onto the Fremont Street Experience mall.

Here’s a map of the access points on first Fridays of the month.

FSE first Fridays map

First Fridays of the month special access points are represented by bunnies. Because, well, bunnies.

Other restrictions worth noting are also in place on first Fridays of the month:

  • No strollers
  • No package beverages (this is now true all the time on Fremont Street)
  • No coolers
  • No chairs
  • No backpacks or luggage
  • No masks
  • No glass, aluminum or bottles
  • No weapons

All bags are subject to search during these special events, and don’t be surprised if you get metal detector wanded. It’s a great way to meet new and interesting people in the field of law enforcement and private security.

During the restricted access period, if a minor (even accompanied by a parent or guardian) needs to cross the Fremont Street Experience, they must be escorted the entire distance by either hotel security or Fremont Street Experience security. Unescorted minors will be taken off the mall by Metro.

Also, it’s important to remember the SlotZilla zip line will be restricted to patrons age 21 and older, since they will be landing within the age-restricted zone.

While that seems like a pretty long list of things you can’t have or do, it’s pretty much what you’d expect to see at any popular entertainment venue, anywhere in the country.

Despite what you may have heard, you can still have liquor on Fremont Street, it just has to be in a plastic cup, rather than an original container like a bottle or aluminum can.

Plastic cups

Plastic cups. Not such a bad thing after all.

We hope these special event restrictions don’t cause too much inconvenience, but we want everyone to have an amazing, safe time at Fremont Street Experience, every single time.

Got questions? Post them in the comments section and we’ll do our best to answer them.

 

  • Brian

    Can I bring a plastic thermos with beer in it into the free concert?

    • sroeben

      Interesting question! It’s not technically an original container, bottle or can. The bottom line, though, is the checkpoints are manned by Metro and private security. If a thermos looks like it could be used as a weapon, it won’t be allowed in. The fact it has liquor in it makes it an “open container,” and as far as we know, you can’t consume from an open container due to existing ordinances. Dude. The casinos on Fremont Street pay for these concerts, so skip trying to save $5. Just pony up and buy a beer! (This is our personal opinion, and not necessarily those of Fremont Street Experience.)

    • Debra

      Beer in a closed Thermos is a Bomb.

  • Rebecca

    My son will be 18 in one month and 4 days. We drove him here from Louisiana for the fire works and this concert as one of his early birthday presents. Is there no way at all that he will be able to go with us being that he will be 18 in 4 weeks?

    • sroeben

      Sorry to hear that, Rebecca. We try to get the word out, but this year, July 4 fell on a first Friday of the month, and age restrictions are needed. Typically, the age limit is 21, so we tried to loosen the rules a bit, but that probably didn’t help in the case of your son. We hope you’ll be back, anyway!

    • James

      Why can’t they male an exception for your son for that one night? What’s the difference if theu did it for him or not?

      • Jen

        The Law

        • Jen

          Happy Friday!! Let’s get it Started aha!!

      • Scott

        The difference is clear. No acceptions. What is special about this one person?

  • Melvin H.

    When I was out there two years ago, I purchased a Sprite that was in an aluminum bottle (12-oz.) from in front of Binion’s, I think; it was outside on the Experience itself, not in the casino. Is that still allowed or is it limited to the plastic cups?

    • sroeben

      It’s no cans or bottles, no matter what’s in it. (Plastic water containers are OK.)

      • Bill Williams

        Unless there is a sponsor that is giving away stuff. I was there during NASCAR Champions week and Coke was allowed to give away cans of Coke. I asked a Metro officer.. ha ha He said rules are only for the masses, not the sponsors.

        • sroeben

          Yep, special permission is required to distribute food or liquid.

      • Laurie M.

        Would Plastic Water Bottles with lids be okay? Not name brand but one we would pick up from Walgreens or a store such as that. If that is not allowed do the Plastic cups have to be clear or would red solo cups be fine?

        • sroeben

          Plastic bottles of water are fine. Plastic cups can be clear or Solo.

  • Jessieca

    It is inconvenience for tour group from oversea miss the light n sound show due to this event as some of them only have 1 night Las Vegas. I would like to suggest to the authority to open one section for tourist below 21years so they can enjoy the beautiful light n sound show.

    • sroeben

      We appreciate your feedback. Unfortunately, we don’t have a lot of flexibility on those evenings. We’ll definitely communicate your concern to our event team!

    • Robin

      The light show is on the hour, and the are restriction doesn’t start until 9, so you can see the 8pm show.

  • Richard Carnes

    Why not just say the truth, that only alcohol bought in casinos is legal on Fremont Street? Instead of a bunch of beating around the bush!

    • sroeben

      Untrue. Liquor can be legally purchased at any number of establishments on Fremont Street and downtown. City leaders have, however, made it illegal to consume liquor from a package liquor store within 1,000 feet of that store. That’s because package liquor stores are highly regulated in communities across the country, and for good reasons. Various forms of bad behavior are associated with the irresponsible sale and consumption of package liquor. Enforcing existing laws has made a dramatic improvement downtown. Come check it out.

  • Gordon

    BUNNIES!!! Awesome. Love the FX, I make a point to get there every visit.

    • sroeben

      Thanks, Gordon. We love bunnies.

  • Gary

    Gee what’s happening to Las Vegas? all of the new rules! it’s starting to sound like a police state. Maybe they need to change the slogan “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” to “Trust me it isn’t going to happen in Vegas because we’ve got more rules then Kanab Utah” Sure the casinos pay for concerts but since most of the money they make comes from gambling why not require everyone to drop $10 into a slot machine? So how long before these new 1st Friday rules become the norm? and how long before they fence the whole place off and have cops at every entrance? We have gone to Fremont a lot over the years and sometimes I’d bring a few beers, or I’ll but them in a casino or buy them from one of the stores down there, but now I think we’ll just find a new place to hang out or just stay home and party in the backyard or garage.

    • sroeben

      We appreciate hearing your thoughts, Gary. “Police state”? Really? First Friday happens once a month, during the summer months. There is a huge influx of guests on Fridays due to First Friday, and we want everyone to be safe and have the time of their lives. If asking people not to drink from bottles and cans (potential projectiles), and not to bring weapons onto the Fremont Street Experience mall, seems too much to ask, sorry about that. While we ponder these important questions, perhaps it’s a good time to look at a list of actual police states: http://www.businessinsider.com/police-force-per-capita-2011-5?op=1

    • Mark

      The beginning of the end……BYE BYE Fremont. Middle class work all year to blow off steam. Work 4 the rich, support the lazys,& then some yuppie installs rules @ an adult playground. I took my daughter there years ago to see the real world. Guess I should have taken her 2 Disney World. I agree w/ the weapons BUT this is America the land of the FREE

  • Katrina

    Hey,
    Does the First Friday run in November?
    Thanks!

    • sroeben

      We don’t expect it to, but please keep an eye out for updates should it happen.

      • Connie

        We will be there for First Friday in November.

  • Brad

    Sounds like a lot of rules, but so what. I am jacked since I will be staying Downtown that weekend beginning 1st Friday.

  • Colleeh

    do they also do the first friday thing in Oct

    • sroeben

      Yes, Oct. 3 should be the last special access first Friday of the month for the year, though.

  • Janice

    what do you have going on for Nov 8th 2014? Any concerts? It’s Veterans weekend? If you do have concerts? Is there a place we can get tickets for concert/ or will this be first come first serve? Thanks

  • Katrina O

    I rarely get to do a First Friday because I don’t get weekends off. I really look forward to the one’s I can make. I love the new rules because quite frankly I think that people were really getting out of hand. I know Vegas is a party city but it is our home and should be respected.

    • sroeben

      Thanks, Katrina. Nobody loves having more rules, but these are fairly easy to abide by, and it keeps people safe and they’re better able to enjoy their visit.

  • mike the mayor

    Are you having a summer concert series this year, if so where can I find the list?

    • sroeben

      We are, but only one of the concerts has been confirmed so far. We’ll be announcing the full schedule soon. Some people check this site to see the acts before they’re officially announced. http://www.pollstar.com/resultsVenue.aspx?ID=36354

  • So will there be a big old line now trying to get onto Fremont as are IDing and doing wristband?

    • sroeben

      Yes!

  • leslie

    I think it is great! It is only 1 friday once a month. We all know how crazy it gets with drunk people roaming around. And just my opinion, I don’t think kids should be down there after dark anyway. Granted, it does suck if it is the only time you will be there, but really who can enjoy Vegas in just 1 day? With the world going crazy I’m happy with the added security!!!

    • sroeben

      We appreciate hearing from you.

  • Lorrie

    What is going on the week of the 4th? What bands? I booked my trip in February and cant plan anything till I know what’s going on where Thanks our 5th trip always stay downtown LOVE IT!

    • sroeben

      Nothing official yet, but always!

  • Lorrie

    Plus we are staying downtown! will it be hard to get in and out of hotel/casino?

    • sroeben

      The casinos make it easy. Just show an ID and you get a wristband.

  • will

    I went to my first,1st Friday and it will be my last. I thought I was in Russia. I love Fremont st and have been coming down town for decades. I really like to know,was there some riot I didn’t hear about or a mass shooting in the past 6 months. All these new rules are ridiculous. Were talking about VEGAS not Disneyland.I like to stroll around from Casino to Casino with a beer without having to explain “Where did you get that beer” Where did you buy it” Where is it GOING” Are you thinking of using it as a WEAPON”. NO TO ALL OF THESE!!! I just want to have a beer or drink in PEACE and move about as I wish.Once again I have done nothing wrong in Vegas in all the years I have been going there. Don’t punish happy people like me for a couple bad apples because even with all the security and all the rules there are still going be a couple BUTTHEADS who will cause trouble. Thank you for 3 decades of fun and relaxation.Focus on the bad apples and leave us regular folks alone.

    • Mark

      Mine too Eventually the lawmakers will wreak the whole place & they will have 2 move back East & get a real job

  • Candice

    Will there be a First Friday on June 5th this year?

    • sroeben

      Likely. You might want to check out Facebook page as the date approaches.

  • Charlene

    I was not aware of 1st Friday block parties in Vegas. A couple of weeks ago was only my 2nd time there. My husband and I are 62 and handicapped and do not drink. We stayed at the D and just finished an early dinner. Can you imagine our stress when were were stopped at security gates just because we wanted to enjoy a stroll down Fremont? We had a schedule to stick to, but had to delay our plans because of the stupid restrictions. Then when we were were finally let out with wristbands, I wanted to enjoy for the first time in my life a zipline ride that I knew did not involve any hiking for which my husband could capture on videotape from below. Little did we know that Security would be so tight that he was cleared way after my zipline experience ended (he was told that he could go through an “express line” to get back in – there was no such thing!). Also, he was carrying a dufflebag that contained his blood sugar test supplies – that delayed him and went through several different security clearances (they still insisted that they confiscate his bag). Imagine, my 62-year old husband with his medical supplies and my walker-rollater being screened – security was tighter than at the airport!!! We don’t even drink !!! All we wanted to do was enjoy my one and only zipline experience and a stroll back to the D!!!!!!! I mean, we appreciate the security, but really, handicapped senior citizens with medical issues ????!!!! Come on !!!!

    • sroeben

      Hi, Charlene, and sorry to hear about your disappointing experience. We appreciate your taking the time to share your story, and we’ll do what we can to avoid a similar situation in the future. Our first Friday of the month procedures are in place to ensure everyone has a safe time downtown. The procedures do involve additional steps and restrictions, but most of the time they’re minor inconveniences. We try to make accommodations for special situations, but it’s a busy, busy time on Fremont Street, as you witnessed. We’re always trying to do better, so thanks again.

  • will

    just ignore my first post and hope no one notices.I won’t post anymore. Good luck

  • mike

    Why don’t you allow backpacks of the first Fridays and you allow women to bring in purses?If you do not allow backpacks you should not allow purses.Some women purses are as big as backpacks.If a man bring in a purse would you allow it?You should allow in backpacks.If you want to search it you can.

    • sroeben

      That is a great question for which we have no good answer.

      • Thats a good question. If a guy had a purse would you make him leave it?

        • sroeben

          Thanks for asking! There’s nothing about purses being prohibited or surrendered in the policy, actually. Handbags are subject to search no matter who’s carrying them. 🙂

  • Clay

    Will the plastic souvenir cups be allowed?

    • sroeben

      Plastic cups are fine on the mall.

  • We’ll be staying DT on the first friday in August. Will this still be ongoing then?

  • Nikki

    Does the light show go on, on the first Friday of the month?

    • sroeben

      Yes, every night of the year!

  • Lorrie

    ugh you guys are killing me who’s playing first Friday july 3rd?? shows nothing anywhere ugh!!! still love old vegas!!!

    • sroeben

      Sorry about that. We’ve got our usual line-up, plus a patriotic rock band scheduled for July 3 and 4, Madison Rising. Hope that helps!

  • James

    What makes First Fridays different from other nights?

    • sroeben

      Sometimes, there are special access rules, including the evening being 21+. It doesn’t happen every first Friday of the month, but often during the summer. It’s due to the large crowds generated by the official First Friday event downtown. Hope that helps.

  • Sonja

    Any suggestions on where to take a 17 year old while we are in Vegas on the 4th to see the fire works and other events since Fremont street is off limits?

    • sroeben

      We aren’t entirely sure July 3 will be a restricted access Friday, so keep an eye on our Facebook page. There’s still a lot to do in Las Vegas for kids and teens!

  • Jimmyvegas

    Um, how about telling us about the event? What exactly is it?

    • sroeben

      Great question! Fremont Street Experience isn’t affiliated with the actual First Friday, but you can find out more at their Web site: http://fflv.net/menu Hope that helps!

  • JB

    Hello,
    We are visiting with our kids and wanted to see if there were any age restrictions outside of first friday?
    Thanks!

    • sroeben

      Not when accompanied by an adult. There’s a curfew for unaccompanied children under the age of 18, as follows: Friday and Saturday, 9:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. Sunday through Thursday, 10:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. Hope that helps.

      • JB

        Thanks so much!

  • Bryan

    Can kids under 21 attend if accompanied by an adult?

    • sroeben

      Nope, sorry. The 21+ rule for that evening means no children on the mall.

  • medsec

    I have never been to first friday but have been to freemont street on previous vacations. Is what i would see there especially more shocking or is it just more nudity. Also, does it go on most of the night? The friday i will be there I have a show booked so wouldnt make it down till 11 or so. Is it still worth attending?

  • Emma

    Hi,
    I am a teacher bringing a group of 48 school children from the UK to America this summer (with 6 staff). We will be in Vegas on a Sunday and Monday. Are there restrictions on my group? I would like them to see the light show when it is dark so don’t want to be kicked out early due to their age.

    • sroeben

      Nope, you’re good. Fridays are the days when there’s restricted access.

  • Robin

    Not real happy with all the new rules, but do understand why they are coming to be. For my next trip it will just be maybe a minor change or two. Had planned to bring my 20 year old grandson. So will either delay his trip by a year, or just head for the strip that Friday night and let him enjoy the music on Saturday night. Unless that’s changed too, there has aways something going on all week-end.

  • mike

    hey, can my 19 & 14 year old kids hang outside the gates and check things out on july 1st 2016.

    • sroeben

      That evening is likely to have special restrictions, including 21+ after 9:00 p.m.

  • Jme

    So is access free for 21 and up? cant pre-buy tickets for slotzilla till i get access to the first Friday and i do not land in Vegas till 5th at 8:30. hope they are sold out by time i get there… didn’t know about first Friday and have booked tickets and planned on staying at 4 queens although i haven’t quite booked the room yet…

    • sroeben

      Access to Fremont Street Experience is free, so yes, even on first Fridays of the month. Because SlotZilla lands inside the restricted footprint, only those 21+ can fly after 9:00 p.m.

  • Wait, so First Friday needs additional security because of the large amount of attendees??…How many more than the usual huge crowd does it take to make it need “additional” security? Is the crowd less likely to get out of hand on Sat or Sunday? This is clearly an excuse to generate more money because of sponsors, not for security reason. If security is an issue, then everyday should have the same rules; you cannot decide what day or how many people are required to implement more measures. Because you are basically saying “we will be more troublemakers-friendly” on other 29 other days of the week, or “having 8,000 instead of 10,000 people is less of a concern”… We all appreciate your safety concerns and attempts to provide more security, but having it on ONE day is laughable, with all due respect…

    • sroeben

      We appreciate hearing your thoughts about this, and you’re right that the crowd size isn’t the entire reason first Fridays of the month require additional security measures. We work closely with law enforcement to determine when such steps are needed. Nobody enjoys having to do this, and it actually tends to hurt revenue of businesses on Fremont Street (there’s no sponsorship involved, you might be thinking of the official First Friday). Despite it being sort of a pain to execute, we mean it when we say safety is of paramount concern, and that’s why we have the special restrictions in place once a month.

  • jamie

    Is their any opportunities to rent space for food carts on the Fridays

  • arlene

    I am happy about your added security measures. The older you get, the less you want to be around complete idiots with no regard for their fellow human beings.’
    Thank you and am very excited about our next trip to Fremont St. from Tampa Bay!!

  • Laurel

    Thank you SO much for instituting this policy. Even if the line delays are a pain, it’s absolutely lovely to enjoy Fremont without children running around everywhere! I came across it by accident on a visit in 2015 and plan my visits specifically to take advantage of it.

  • Vurda Lines

    Can I use a mobility walker on first Friday ????

  • Nolden Roxanne

    So this is a block party? What happens there