Preservation Spotlight: Help Save Davy's Locker Neon Sign

The whimsical neon fish that has long advertised Davy's Locker bar on Desert Inn near Maryland Parkway is endanger of going dark forever and possibly being replaced by generic strip mall sign. 

Erin Ryan writes in Las Vegas Weekly that the concern is more than just preservationists and lovers of neon fish being hyperbolic. Ryan writes of the concerted effort by Cindy Slight and others to keep the whimsical  neon fish going.

“It’s so sad. It’s sad for me as a native; I mean my grandfather went to that bar. And it’s sad for me as the bar owner, because we don’t even look open at night,” says Cindy Slight, who started managing Davy’s in 2006 and worked her way into partnership and finally ownership. But she doesn’t own the property or the sign, a relic she says draws all kinds of people to stop and snap photos. At night, though, when bars make most of their money, the almost entirely burned-out banner has the opposite effect. “The sign kind of went the way of the economy at the time,” Slight says, “and so it’s just been an uphill battle ever since.”

There was a victory in that uphill battle, albeit brief. “Davy” has gone dark before, and in 2011 the neon was restored with the help of a generous bar patron. But when the lights started flickering again about five months later, Slight discovered that the $3,100 they’d paid didn’t cover any kind of maintenance. Davy’s Locker is ’60s-era, complete with Rat Pack lore, but Slight says the property owners aren’t local and favor replacing the classic sign with something generic. “So much of old Vegas is gone. You have to really look hard to find the little pieces that aren’t. That’s one of the things I love about Davy, and to see that go …”

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