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Neon Museum Expansion Features Thirty New Signs

AP Photo/Julie Jacobson, File

In this May 24, 2013 file photo, a tourist takes a photo at the Neon Museum in Las Vegas. The Neon Museum in its first full year of operations drew in more than 60,000 visitors at the outdoor space full of retired casino signs.

The boulevard is about to get a little brighter. 

The Neon Museum is expanding for the first time since it opened five years ago, bringing 30 signs out of storage and into public view.

The signs include the Riviera, some of the Stardust, and Boyd property signs. Some of the Stardust stars may be lit up, said CEO Rob McCoy.

“We’re actually talking about lighting some of the Stardust stars, which we have not done in the past,” McCoy told KNPR's State of Nevada. He said the sign will be a "beacon to the boneyard."

At one time, the Stardust sign was the largest free standing sign on the Las Vegas Strip. After the resort was closed, Bill Boyd helped with the cost of taking the sign down and transferring it to the boneyard. 

McCoy said the Stardust sign will be in a new outdoor section of the museum. 

“That particular part of the boneyard will be curated and those signs will be put in a position that they tell a story,” he said.

There are about 600 pieces in the museum's collection and about 500 of them are on display in some manner. Not every sign in the collection has been restored. McCoy said they have to be selective.

“First of all, they have to have a unique history. And most of the signs in Las Vegas, if they’ve been here any length of time, have a pretty unique history.” he said, "That’s basically what our visitors want to see. They want to see the architecture of the sign but they also want to see the art that is involved and neon is an art.”

The display is expected to be open to the public by mid to late summer, McCoy said. He also said visitors should look forward to new signs they'll be getting when remodeling of Palace Station is complete. He said Station Casinos has promised the museum the iconic train signage from the off-Strip property. 

Rob McCoy, CEO, Neon Museum

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Kristy Totten is a producer at KNPR's State of Nevada. Previously she was a staff writer at Las Vegas Weekly, and has covered technology, education and economic development for the Las Vegas Review-Journal. She's a graduate of the Missouri School of Journalism.