Bonnie Springs Closes
In my book, Things To Do in Las Vegas Off the Strip, Away from the Neon Lights, I wrote about this place, and included it as one of my favorite things to do off the Strip. However, Bonnie Springs Ranch is now closed. I took my child here several times after I arrived in Las Vegas back in 2003. On the weekends, they usually had a small train that took guests to and from the parking lot. Kids, including mine, enjoyed the train.
There was an old western town that was usually a visitor’s first stop. This part of Bonnie Springs was reminiscent of the Knott’s Berry Farm Ghost Town, although one with a lower budget. There were a few shows performed here. There were gunfights and a hanging.
But I think what my child liked best was the petting zoo. It was large, and there were many animals. Since it was part petting zoo and part zoo, many of the animals could only be looked at but not touched.
There are a few other things you could do here. They had a riding stable and offered pony rides for children and guided trail rides on horseback. They even had a motel if you wanted to stay the night.
This place was far west, as far as you could go here in Las Vegas without leaving the valley. The elevation is a little higher than the Strip, so it tends to be a few degrees cooler. This made it nicer in the summer months.
But all that is gone now. The land was sold to a developer. They found new homes for the animals and planned to demolish everything. I’m not sure what is being built here, but I get the feeling it won’t be open to the public. It is a strange place to build anything because it is only a small plot of land that is surrounded by large federal lands.
Whatever the future holds, Bonnie Springs will be missed.