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Vegas Vic

Historic Sites, Monuments, Landmarks, and Public Art (State Historical Landmark)

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Although the sign was never officially named, Vegas Vic is the most widely used name given to the neon sign in Las Vegas on what was once The Pioneer Club casino. The sign was erected in 1951 and was revolutionary because of its moving arm and cigarette, as well as its ability to play its friendly sound bit of “Howdy Podner!” every fifteen minutes. The Pioneer Club is no longer a casino, but the Vegas Vic sign is still located in the same place as it was in 1951.

Vegas Vic after his restoration in 1998.

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The Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce elected to hire a firm in 1947 in order to attract more business to the city of Las Vegas. The company hired created the concept of Vegas Vic, as well as his “Howdy Podner” greeting, and first made it into a postcard. Vegas Vic’s character quickly became popular, though, and as a result, the owners of the Pioneer Club hired Young Electric Sign Company to create a neon sign version of Vegas Vic for the casino. As the city was moving towards the new, flashy neon design, the Pioneer Club casino opted to move away from its current sign, which merely sported a horse and the words “Pioneer Club.”

Vegas Vic was completed in 1951, sporting moving arms, a moving cigarette, and a voice box that would blare out his “Howdy Podner!” greeting every fifteen minutes. The sign was massively popular, and became an iconic piece of the Las Vegas experience. However, in 1966, Vegas Vic’s greeting was silenced because director Lee Marvin, who was filming The Professionals at the time, complained that the greeting was far too loud. Vic remained silent for years, but was given its voice back in the 1980s. Vic remained well-maintained until The Pioneer Club closed down in 1995, and Vegas Vic quickly fell into disrepair. However, the Neon Museum at the Fremont Street Experience opted to restore the sign as long as the current owner of the sign and building, Schiff Enterprises, would pay for the electricity required to keep it going. Since then, the sign has been maintained and continues to be a Las Vegas icon.

Sources

http://lasvegassun.com/news/2000/jun/25/vegas-vic-lives/ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vegas_Vic

Address
25 E Fremont Street
Las Vegas, NV 89101
Tags
  • Architecture and Historical Buildings
This location was created on 2015-07-14 by Zack Rakes .

This entry has been viewed 218 times within the past year

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