Las Vegas’ population grew by 97.6% between the mid-1980s and the mid-1990s and again by 41.8% between 2000 and 2010 bringing the population to just over 583,000. The effects of this population explosion, and the subsequent economic downturn, are felt throughout the city. Known for its booming hotel and casino industry, the “Entertainment Capital of the World” continues to attract thirty-seven million tourists annually. In addition to fine dining, casinos, and shopping, the rich history of the city and region are also a draw; Las Vegas is home to the National Atomic Energy Testing Museum, a joint venture with the Smithsonian Institution.
The interfaith infrastructure in Las Vegas is diligent in keeping pace with the ever-growing religious diversity of Las Vegas, taking as their rallying point the dual challenges of promoting economic recovery and infusing a deeper sense of community throughout the city. This is a sizable undertaking for a city with only four interfaith organizations; yet, these organizations offer an impressive array of services to meet the needs of the greater Las Vegas community. Family Promise of Las Vegas, one of 177 chapters of the national Family Promise organization, engages an interfaith network of twenty-three congregations who host emergency shelters in their churches, mosques, and synagogues. The Interfaith Council of Southern Nevada brings together over 900 people for the annual Mayors Prayer Breakfast, the proceeds from which benefit Camp Anytown, a program that teaches conflict resolution skills to young people.