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The Ghosts Of Las Vegas Christmases Past

Updated on February 23, 2013

Christmas In Las Vegas ~ A Place Like No Other

Christmas in Las Vegas ~ this is a place like no other. Decorating is done on a grand scale. This is the view from the Venetian Hotel.
Christmas in Las Vegas ~ this is a place like no other. Decorating is done on a grand scale. This is the view from the Venetian Hotel. | Source
Some of the Christmas decorations at the Bellagio Hotel in the Conservatory there. It is just stunning, year after year.
Some of the Christmas decorations at the Bellagio Hotel in the Conservatory there. It is just stunning, year after year. | Source

My Submission To A Writing Contest

I had a lot of fun recently by taking a challenge that was put out to writers all over the Las Vegas area. It was a contest to write a creative writing short-story piece. There were a couple of catches though. First of all, you had to write your Yuletide or Christmas story with a Las Vegas twist. The second catch was that it had to be only 300 words or less. Then you had to include the following words someplace within your text:


Humbug

Dickens

Reindeer

Wise Men

Jolly

Partridge

Tinsel

Star

Bell

Mistletoe

Stockings

Inn

I undertook the challenge in the spirit of fun and wrote a whimsical story (maybe a little on the macabre side with its reference to Bugsy Siegel)... but hey, he IS a part of the fascinating history of Las Vegas. In my opinion, he is one of the most unique characters who made Las Vegas the interesting place it is today.

For those who don't know, the other people listed in this story are Sammy, Dean, Joey and Frank, who were known back in the day as "The Rat Pack." Liberace was of course the very flamboyant entertainer with a unique piano playing style and entertainment style. He sure knew how to dress up, too, from what I remember.

Here is my story ~


The Las Vegas Ghosts Of Christmases Past

Strolling into town on a cool Christmas Eve, I ambled my way into the nearest watering hole. I was amazed by the humbug attitude I encountered. “This doesn’t even feel like Christmas” I said. I pulled up a seat next to a jolly looking fellow named Bugsy and ordered a cold one, Coca-Cola of course. I had to have a sword and a cherry in it for a dickens of a good laugh. “You’ll put your eye out with that” said Bugsy, and he oughtta know about eyes bein’ put out.

Know where I can find some Christmas cheer Bugsy? “Sure do, just follow me out to my crazy holiday pimped ride and we’ll fly all the way to the inn.” “What on earth is pulling this thing, Bugsy?” “Reindeer!” he replied. “Hop in! Go Frankie, dance Sammy, sing Dean and quit joking around, Joey! You too, Liberace, and quit tinkling on those keys!” Craziest bunch of reindeer you ever did see, but somehow they all fit in just right in this town.

The inn was a jolly place with dancers wearing partridge feathers on huge headdresses and skimpy outfits decorated with tinsel. Each long-legged beauty was wearing her very best Christmas stockings. Since the Inn was so stylishly decorated with a shiny silver bell and mistletoe, I had to stop and give a kiss to the prettiest showgirl.

Bugsy caught the eye of the star that night, Elvis, up there on that stage and asked him “Elvis, where can I find some wise men?” “Don’t you mean a wise guy there Bugsy? Follow me! “ As they both left to find Bugsy’s wise guy, I heard the announcer’s voice as they exited saying “Elvis has left the building.” But don’t worry, he’ll be back - they all come back.

Bugsy Siegel, notorious and a fascinating part of the history of Las Vegas.
Bugsy Siegel, notorious and a fascinating part of the history of Las Vegas. | Source

Bugsy Is A Famous ~ Or Rather Infamous~ Character

For those not familiar with the story of Bugsy Siegel, he was one of the main people involved in bringing the famous Flamingo Hotel to Las Vegas. He was sent here to oversee the construction of the hotel. In the process, a lot of money "went missing" ~ money that was meant to cover costs of the construction.

There were tales of contractors hired to build the hotel who would drive onto the property, load up their trucks with construction materials and drive away... a pretty blatant example of stealing. Now since the hotel was being funded in part by the Mafia, they were incensed to find out that theft was going on. One of the worst offenders as far as theft was concerned was thought to be Bugsy Siegel himself.

It was reported that his girlfriend at the time, Hollywood actress Virginia Hill, was making large deposits into overseas bank accounts. This took place coincidentally at the time some of the theft was taking place. Bugsy was extremely paranoid, and it seems he had very good reason for that paranoia.

He was at his girlfriends apartment in June of 1947, she was not there... when suddenly a shot rang out in the night. Bullets came in through the window of the apartment and hit Bugsy Siegel several times in the head... one of those shots was reported to have "put his eye out." The press put out a pretty graphic description of the crime, but this was the way the Mafia handled situations when they thought someone was stealing from them.

And I Heard Him Exclaim As He Drove Out Of Sight ~


MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL,

AND TO ALL A GOOD NIGHT!

Comments

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    • KathyH profile image
      Author

      KathyH 5 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada

      Thanks, Beckie! I always appreciate your wonderful support! :)

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 5 years ago from Upstate, New York

      Very creative imagination and I enjoyed a great deal of fun with this!

    • KathyH profile image
      Author

      KathyH 5 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada

      You're welcome, Graham! I'm so glad you enjoyed this! Thank you for reading and commenting! :)

      Thank you, too, Gypsy! Thank you for passing it on, I appreciate that so much! :)

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 5 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      A great and imaginative story. Thanks for the background info. Much enjoyed and passing this on.

    • old albion profile image

      Graham Lee 5 years ago from Lancashire. England.

      A really good hub, a good story and background information as well. I really enjoyed it, thank you.

      Graham.

    • KathyH profile image
      Author

      KathyH 5 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada

      Thanks, Kaili! I appreciate that! :) We saw a tribute show to the Rat Pack at the Rio hotel here in Las Vegas, and it was so much fun! I imagine it was just like the types of shows done by the real "Rat Pack." I've always been fascinated by the entertainers of that generation. Thanks so much for your nice comment! :)

    • KathyH profile image
      Author

      KathyH 5 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada

      Thanks, Pamela! I didn't win, but I did have a great time writing it, thanks so much for reading and commenting! :) I appreciate that!

    • Kaili Bisson profile image

      Kaili Bisson 5 years ago from Canada

      Hi I hope you win! Great story and you worked all of the required words in beautifully. I especially like the reference to the boys in the Rat Pack.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 5 years ago from United States

      I think you did a wonderful job of writing this story using all the required names and it was fun to read. I hope you win the contest. Voted up!

    • KathyH profile image
      Author

      KathyH 5 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada

      Thanks, Cyndi10! No, I sure didn't, that's why I went ahead and published it here. I did have fun writing it though, thanks so much for reading and commenting! :) I appreciate that!

    • Cyndi10 profile image

      Cynthia B Turner 5 years ago from Georgia

      Enjoyed the story. Did you win the contest? You should have. Happy holidays.

    • KathyH profile image
      Author

      KathyH 5 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada

      Thank you, travmaj! :) Happy Holidays to you, too! All the best in the New Year, too! :)

    • KathyH profile image
      Author

      KathyH 5 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada

      Thanks so much, Hawaiian! I appreciate the encouragement! :) Happy Holidays to all of you as well, thanks so much! :)

    • travmaj profile image

      travmaj 5 years ago from australia

      Very creative, fun and informative also. Well done. It seemed quite a task to incorporate all those words into such a short piece. And you have done it with style.. Hasppy Holidays -

    • hawaiianodysseus profile image

      Hawaiian Odysseus 5 years ago from Southeast Washington state

      Extremely clever! I love these writing challenges where you're simultaneously bound to include certain criteria yet can simply go all out with your rampant creativity...and you, my friend, certainly are not lacking in the imagination compartment of your beautiful mind. Thank you for sharing! Happy Holidays to you and yours!

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