The Neon Boneyard in Las Vegas

Posted on May 3, 2013 by Allison Lee in Vintage Design

An inspiration to artists, designers and historians, the Neon Boneyard in Las Vegas is my all-time favorite location to get ideas for shapes, fonts, color combinations and logos. Housing torn-down neon marquees from the last 100 years, you can find world-famous vintage signs from Caesars Palace, Binions Horseshoe, the Golden Nugget and the Stardust. I love getting ideas for art from these historic, vintage signs. For example, on the abandoned Route 66 highway in Southern California, there is a beautiful relic of an old mid-century sign for a rest stop called the Road Runner Cafe. This sign is in excellent condition for being 50+ years old and surviving the oppressive desert heat each summer. I was inspired by the shape of the Road Runner sign when creating the original logo for Shenanigans Family Entertainment Center in La Crosse, Wisconsin.

The Neon Boneyard in Las Vegas is filled with hundreds of perfectly preserved vintage signs. The signs range from the early 1900's when Las Vegas was a dusty stop on the Union Pacific Railroad, to signs like the Sahara which recently closed to makeway for the glamorous SLS Hotel and Casino. A fun note - the Sahara font seen in the historic Sahara Marquee was designed by the same artist who created the famous Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas sign on the strip, Betty Willis. She is an incredible graphic artist responsible for so much art in Las Vegas, but I'll save her for another blog post!

For more information on the Neon Boneyard or to book a tour on your next trip, visit the neon museum website.