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Ever since Elvis Presley released his single “Viva Las Vegas” from his film of the same name, Sin City has embraced him as their “King.” Following his 1968 Comeback Special, Elvis maintained a concert residency in Vegas, where he performed over 700 sold-out shows.
Following Elvis death, his legacy has lived on in Vegas through the countless number of impersonators in the city. Some of these impersonators put on a full-out concert like Presley did, while others dress up like him and ask some of the thousands of couples that tie the knot in the city each year if they’ll take each other as man and wife.
There’s no denying the mark that Elvis left on Vegas, but as a new report reveals, his influence in the city is starting to fade away.
Mark Rumpler, who has spent the past seven years conducting weddings as Elvis, says there has been a drastic decrease in the amount of Elvis-themed weddings they’ve done since last year.
“We have about 15 percent of our weddings as Elvis, whereas a year ago, we were doing 40 percent,” Rumpler told CBS This Morning.
In addition to the decrease in Elvis-officiated weddings, there are currently only two Elvis-themed shows still operating on the Strip, and an Elvis exhibit was closed last month because of low turnout.
So why is it that “The King’s” reign in Vegas seems to be coming to an end? Sean McBurney, one of the general managers at Caesars Palace, believes it’s because a new generation is flocking to Vegas for new reasons:
“With the nightclubs and the day clubs that we have in this market, I think you’re seeing a younger crowd be attracted to Las Vegas because of these amenities. The notion that you see Elvis impersonators walking up and down the strip is cliched and inaccurate.”
Even though Elvis’ presence in Vegas may be fading in some respects, his influence still remains through the residencies that today’s biggest stars maintain in the city. Although it isn’t an uncommon thing now for singers to have a Vegas residency, McBurney said that Elvis was truly the first.
“We have so many artists that have followed his way, but make no mistake, it started with Elvis,” he said.
You can listen to the song that led to Elvis’ close association with Vegas below.
What do you think about the new report on Elvis’ fading influence in Vegas?
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