The Neon Museum, known as one of Las Vegas’ most iconic and visually stunning museums telling the story of the city through historic neon signs, launched its inaugural Duck Duck Shed: Celebrating Las Vegas Architecture, Design, and Culture event to an international audience.

The four-day event offered 31 individual offerings that celebrate Las Vegas’ distinctive architecture from past to the present through walking tours, aerial tours, panel discussions with industry experts, and once-in-a-lifetime tours of Jungle Palace, the historic estate of Siegfried & Roy, a private home that has never been granted public access. A new tour that highlights the architectural history of the buildings associated with the iconic signs in the Neon Boneyard was also debuted.

Seventeen of the 30 programs (57%) offered reached capacity, which exceeded the expectations for the first year, as did the draw from audiences worldwide. Over 50 percent of our ticketholders were from outside Southern Nevada. We welcomed over 3,400 attendees including those from The Netherlands, England, Canada, and Australia, as well as 27 states in the US. This remarkable response answers the question if there is an appetite for learning more about Las Vegas’ incomparable, ever-evolving skyline as well as its efforts towards historic preservation.

31 Individual Programs | 57% Sold Out | 97% Surveyed Will Attend Again


Wayward Eye Exhibition

This solo exhibition featured the photographs of Denise Scott Brown taken between 1956 – 1966. Wayward Eye delves into Scott Brown’s exploration into urbanism, Pop Art, and the emerging architectural language of roadside America. The exhibition was on loan from The University of Nevada, Las Vegas.


The View from Flamingo Road: How Las Vegas Mastered Modernism

Alan Hess

For all its reputation as a glittering desert playground, Las Vegas is also a bellwether shaping modern American architecture. If other cities looked to Europe, Las Vegas grew from the native soil of the southwestern desert, the modern miracle of the automobile, a lively tourist economy, and a creative freedom that turned it into a city both singularly unique and typical of all others. Architect and author Alan Hess will outline why Nevadans can take pride in nurturing this influential urban laboratory.

Alan Hess Bio


The Gilded Cage: The Psychology of a Casino

Jon Sparer, FAIA, Retired Principal, YWS Architects – Mitchel Trageton, AIA, Senior VP of Architecture, Marnell Companies, – Brian Fink, AIA, Principal of Klai Juba Architecture + Interiors,

The Gilded Cage: The Psychology of a Casino explored the evolution of casino resort architecture from clock-less, dark rooms and 99-cent shrimp cocktails to magnificent views, perfectly appointed luxury cabanas, and Michelin-star restaurants. Attendees heard from the architects who designed today’s destination properties and how they looked to the past to create buildings that capture the visitor’s five senses.

Jonathan Sparer Bio  |   Mitchell Trageton Bio  |  Brian Fink Bio  |  Robert Boughner Bio


Two Perspective on Paul Revere Williams

Janna Ireland, Photographer, artist Carmen Beals, Associate Curator and Outreach Director | Las Vegas, Nevada Museum of Art Melvyn Green, Structural Engineer, Melvyn Green & Associates.  Presented by the Nevada Preservation Foundation.

This special program provided the aesthetic and structural perspectives of the architecture of iconic, pioneer architect Paul Revere Williams. Williams’ prolific portfolio includes approximately 2,500 structures around the world. Breaking barriers, Williams was the first Black architect accepted into the AIA in 1923, and in 1957, was inducted as the AIA’s first Black fellow, ultimately earning the moniker: Architect to the Stars. Acclaimed photographer Janna Ireland and Curator Carmen Beals, presented Williams’ work aesthetically by featuring pieces from the Nevada Museum of Art’s exhibition. Structural Engineer Melvyn Green talked through moving Williams’ iconic La Concha motel lobby from the Strip to its present home at The Neon Museum.

Janna Ireland Bio Carmen Beals Bio Melvyn Green Bio


The Local Lore of Downtown: A Walking Tour of Iconic Casinos

For all its publicity and global attention, Las Vegas is still full of surprises and secrets. A small group joined the Downtown walking tour of legendary casinos and glittering neon signs that have uniquely placed Las Vegas in the public imagination. Behind the sumptuous electric facades, hotel lobbies and cozy gambling parlors, our curated tour explored some hidden overlooked places and some obscure objects and curious artifacts, old and new, that have contributed to the storied past of this city for the past 100 years.


Vegas Vickie “Kickoff” Reception

Attendees met up with fellow DDS attendees at the bar with a fabulous view! The iconic Vegas Vickie sign was saved from destruction and is now the centerpiece to Circa – downtown Las Vegas’s newest property. Brief remarks were made by Jeff Victor, COO of Circa, who explained saving Vegas Vickie and how the property came to be built around her.


Denise Scott Brown: Reflections

Eric Strain, Architect and Associate Professor Architecture, University of Las Vegas – Jose Gáméz, Associate Professor and Associate Director of Architecture, University of North Carolina, Charlotte

On the 50th anniversary of the seminal book, Learning From Las Vegas, the surviving author, Ms. Scott Brown explored the concepts of the “duck” and the “decorated shed” while reflecting on her decades spent examining the unique architecture of Las Vegas. Our insightful panel discussed what one can learn from Las Vegas, the book’s longevity, and why it is still a critical read for architecture enthusiasts today.

Jose Gáméz Bio  |  Eric Strain Bio


Jungle Palace Home Tour

Tour attendees walked through the home of iconic magicians, entertainers, and animal activists, Siegfried & Roy narrated by members of the S&R company – the people who knew them best.  The insights included first-hand stories about the work of the highest paid entertainers on the Strip at their time in the location where they cared for, played with, and entertained their cats.


Additional Offerings

The Neon Museum Double The Glow Experience

The Neon Museum Double The Glow Experience combines both our very popular 45-minute guided, group tour of the Main Boneyard and the newly expanded 45-minute Brilliant! Jackpot show in the North Gallery for an all-encompassing tour of the Museum’s on campus collection.

Neon Night Flight Spectacular

Discover the neon lights of Las Vegas from above and below. The evening starts with a fabulous helicopter flight followed by The Neon Museum experience with a guided tour through the Neon Boneyard, showcasing more than 250 vintage Las Vegas signs with nearly two dozen re-illuminated and others dramatically lit from the ground. You’ll conclude your visit with our highly acclaimed show Brilliant! Jackpot!

History By Helicopter

Experience Las Vegas history from above. See the sites of the Stardust, Rivera, Dunes, and Desert Inn, from a vantage point like no other! Your history host will greet you at the terminal with a drink in hand and provide a brief overview of what was and what is today. The price also includes a souvenir photo.

Architecture Tour at the Neon Boneyard

Presented during the “Golden Hour,” this special tour provided visitors to The Neon Museum with architecturally-specific insights into the properties highlighted on the tour.