Hello From Las Vegas! – June has been generally kind when it comes to the weather. With a couple of exceptions, we’ve been around 100F the entire month. We jump to 110F briefly later this week before getting back down to a seasonal 104F. For all the talk of people how Las Vegas is 115F everyday in the summer, the reality is that both July and August average just over 100F. That according to readings taken at the airport, which (as most of you know) is very close to The Strip!
Stay Hydrated, My Friends – The Dos Equis guy may have made famous the phrase “Stay Thirsty, My Friends”. However, that is the last thing you want to happen in Las Vegas. Especially on The Strip where the distances are so great. (Downtown on Fremont Street, you are never more than a few minutes from any casino to a sundry store where cheap water is plentiful).
Obviously, if you plan carefully, you can grab water at the pharmacies on The Strip, or from the street vendors selling bottled water. However, if you are in the middle of one of the huge Strip casinos, your options get a bit more thin. You can hunt down the gift shop, where it still isn’t going to be super-cheap. You can buy water from a bar, where they will sell you a tiny bottle for many dollars. You may even take an empty glass and stick it under the warm/hot water that comes from the restroom faucets.
Every year we remind members of a better option. And, because hydration is so important and we don’t want anyone getting ill, we’re suggesting another option:
Go up to a bar with $1 in your hand, and as you place it on the other side of the bar (like you do when you tip), say “Can I please get an ice water in a pint glass, filled halfway with ice?” They get $1 for doing 10 seconds worth of work, and you don’t die of thirst!
Also, if you are asking for a drink while playing, it is perfectly acceptable to ask for a bottle of water at the same time. Just remember to tip an extra $1. Most don’t realize that!
Go Knights Go! – I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the incredible season that the Vegas Golden Knights had. Many of you who love Las Vegas and had never paid any attention to hockey adopted the team as your own. Merchandise sales blew away every other team as the Golden Knights apparel because a way to show your love of Las Vegas no matter where you live around the world. Kind of like a secret handshake. And yes, t-shirts and such have literally been spotted around the world.
If you didn’t follow or know anything about hockey a year ago, you aren’t alone. Most of us in Las Vegas didn’t either! After game one of the finals, local media was out live interviewing fans. Many of whom stated that they were not hockey fans before, but they are now.
The future for the team looks pretty bright. Rumors are that around the NHL, top players are talking to their agents regarding whether there is any chance of playing for the Golden Knights. One can understand the draw:
1. It now appears that the team is very competitive
2. Spending your winter in mild, sunny Las Vegas sure beats spending it in many other NHL cities where winter means snow and cold.
3. No state income tax. When you are making millions, the savings can be in the six figures yearly.
4. You get to play in arguably the most amazing atmosphere in the league. The arena is brand new, national broadcasters have suggested our fans are the loudest in the league, and you are literally playing on the world famous Las Vegas Strip.
Bonus: The state-of-the-art practice facility is literally (in it’s own right) a small arena and fans flock to even watch the practices in good numbers. Granted, it doesn’t help that the practice arena is in a very nice part of town, and has a bar and grill overlooking the ice which everyone really enjoys.
So, we welcome all of the worldwide fans, and hope you are rocking your Knights apparel as your personal salute to your love of Las Vegas!
Regardless of what the future holds, Las Vegas residents and visitors will never forget how the team brought everyone together after the tragic events of Oct. 1, 2017 and gave us something to rally our pain around. I know that to this day, I can’t look at Mandalay Bay without feeling a pit in my stomach.
The Strip Better Watch Out – Downtown Las Vegas is on the rise. In 2-3 years, Derek Stevens’ new 777 room hotel will open where the Las Vegas Club used to sit. It is slated to be Strip-quality, have an amazing pool, and amazing views as it towers over other downtown hotels. He’s also snapped up yet another parcel behind his property, The D. He also owns the entire block behind the Four Queens.
Couple that with another project which is picking up steam: The plans to build light rail from the airport to downtown and beyond to the Smith Center and North Premium Outlets. Before you get too puffed up, this isn’t being built specifically for visitors. The reality is that the Maryland Parkway corridor (which is a main route between the airport and downtown) is packed with everything from UNLV to medical centers and hospitals to a major shopping mall and tons of high-density (apartment) housing. The fact that it will whisk you from McCarran to Fremont Street will simply be an added bonus.
No More Rio Seafood Buffet – A few months ago, The Rio stopped their free shuttle to The Strip. The walk from The Rio to Bellagio is about the same as from New York, New York to Bellagio (without all of the great Strip scenery). Many people are either Ubering while the more frugal go over and wait for the Gold Coast Shuttle.
Hot on the heels of that is Rio’s decision to remove the (pay more for) seafood option at their Carnival World Buffet. Long-time visitors remember that The Rio used to have a separate seafood buffet where KISS Mini-Golf now exists. They dovetailed it into their regular buffet for the extra fee. Now, that option is simply gone. While they are not specifically seafood buffets, hit Aria or Wynn for a decent selection. Or Caesars if you really want to pay way too much.
Hope you are enjoying this issue!
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Ted Newkirk, Publisher
Editor, News Researcher, Concerts and Headliners: Amy Rayner-Cooley
Distributor, Member Services: Rick “VegasZiggy” Ziegler
Stevie Wonder is bringing his song party to the Strip. He has even named it such. The legendary singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist is playing five shows at The Park Theater on Aug. 3, 4, 8, 10 and 11.
- Killer Views Of Las Vegas Await At This New Boutique Nightclub – Members: Read Ted’s Take on this story, and add your own comment or question for us
- The 17 Hottest Concerts Hitting Las Vegas This Summer – Click for Tickets
- Fanilows Quickly Snap Up Tickets To Barry Manilow Las Vegas Residency – Click for Tickets
- Coming Soon To Las Vegas: Stevie Wonder To Play Park MGM And Van Morrison To Play Caesars – Click for Tickets
When you think of sharks and Las Vegas, you probably think of card games and people — not the animal. But with the arrival of Palms Casino Resort’s new bar, that association might change. As part of its $620-million renovation, the hotel recently unveiled a massive art collection with works loaned by owners Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta. In addition to new pieces from contemporary artists, visitors can see works from heavyweights like Jean-Michel Basquiat, Andy Worhol and Takashi Murakami.
On Saturday, May 5, one Lawrenceburg, Ind. resident won big during the fifth annual Marquee Millionaire Slot Tournament at M Resort Spa Casino. After three rounds of tournament play, the lucky Marquee Rewards member, Richard Ideker, ended up with the highest cumulative score to become the winner of $1 million.
It’s easy to take museums for granted. Or, worse, to think of them just as warehouses for stuff from the past. But the best museums do more than display objects. They use exhibits, artifacts and interactive displays to tell a story, whether that story is about mobsters, prehistoric monsters or, even, spooky spirits.
- Beyond The Vegas Strip: 3 Awesome Nevada Spots To Visit – Members: Read Ted’s Take on this story, and add your own comment or question for us
- 8 Things To Do In Las Vegas That Aren’t Total Tourist Traps – Members: Read Ted’s Take on this story, and add your own comment or question for us
- Grab Your Cameras: New Sign Coming To Downtown Las Vegas – Members: Read Ted’s Take on this story, and add your own comment or question for us
- Five Little Known Facts About The Wildlife Habitat At Flamingo Las Vegas
- High-Tech, Sphere-Shaped Arena Coming To Las Vegas Strip
We’re thinking of taking a trip from Las Vegas to Laughlin? What’s the best way to get there?
First of all, let’s note that Laughlin isn’t for everyone. It is a little bit of an older crowd, the pace is a bit slower, things are generally much less expensive (especially than The Strip), and it isn’t the place to look for celeb chefs, high-end shopping, thumping nightclubs and the like. Which suits many folks just fine.
Second, Laughlin is upwards of 10 degrees hotter than Las Vegas. I’d suggest not visiting May – September.
Laughlin is a collection of 10 high-rise (think downtown Las Vegas, not The Strip) hotel casinos. All but one back the Colorado River, and some of them are connected via a riverwalk. An actual river taxi service will also get you from property to property.
The drive isn’t overly difficult. Laughlin is 100 miles from Center Strip, and freeway or four-lane highway for (basically) the entire drive. However, a couple of HUGE words of caution:
1. The only real town along the way is Searchlight (roughly 1/2 way there). If that name rings a bell, it is the hometown of former U.S. Senate leader Harry Reid. It is also home to one of the most notorious speed traps in the State of Nevada.
As you get into town, the speed limit goes from “rural Nevada, just keep it under 80” (IE, a limit of 70 or 75, I don’t recall the exact number) down to 35 and then literally about a block later, down to 25. When you’ve been doing 75, 25 feels like you could walk faster. And, many don’t pay sharp attention to their speedometer and think they are doing 25 when they are 35 or higher. Which will get you a 10+ mph over ticket. Don’t be that guy.
2. One minute, you are whizzing down the freeway in Henderson, Nevada surrounded by housing suburbs and strip malls and such. 5 minutes later, you are in the middle of nothing and the next stop for food, water, restrooms, and (most importantly) GAS is Searchlight. After that, there is only one gas station between Searchlight and Laughlin.
Running out of gas, or not having plenty of water in case you break down, is not recommended. Even if it isn’t summer, you are dealing with pounding sunshine during the day, and COLD desert nights during the winter. Just because it is a well-traveled road doesn’t mean you won’t be waiting for help if needed.
Over the years, various tour companies have done one-day tours. You pay a modest sum, often get a free buffet or coupon book, and they do all of the driving. Because these tours tend to come-and-go (based on time of year, demand, what particular tour companies are doing with their resources), we do not recommend one in particular. Our advice is to poke around on your favorite search engine.
Depending on how much time you have, I highly recommend a couple of side trips. (Don’t try to do them both on a day-trip). The historic Route 66 western mining town of Oatman, Arizona is about 45 minutes one way, and well worth going up and enjoying. This is by no means a ghost town. They have a general store, restaurants, saloons, a number of quirky gift shops, and an hold (operating) hotel.
This is not a Disneyland recreation. This is the real deal. A few hundred people actually still live up there. It is a great place for eccentrics and those who just want some elbow room and not to be bothered by “the man”. (Don’t get me wrong. There is law and order, and it is safe).
The other is the town of Nelson, NV. Nelson is only 15 minutes off of the main road from Las Vegas to Searchlight, Nelson bills itself as a ghost town, although there is electricity and a store. They have mine tours, and plenty of history in buildings, mine works, and old cars and trucks. It is a true spot of Nevada’s western history. It is also only 45 minutes from Las Vegas if you wish to make a day trip out of it.
My suggestion? Make a two-day trek out of it for maximum enjoyment, history, and limited stress. I’d leave Las Vegas in the morning, and have breakfast at the Southwest Diner in the historic part of Boulder City. They open at 6 AM and have all of your typical diner breakfast faves. As always, check your gas tank!
From there, head south to the Route 66 railroad town of Kingman. As I’ve only used Kingman as a pit stop, I’ll leave it up to you and your favorite search engine to see if there is anything you want to stop and check out.
So, why are we taking this route to Laughlin? The old path of Route 66 from Kingman to Oatman — over Sitgraves Pass — is one of the most famous on the old “Mother Road”. From the time you leave Cool Springs Station (now a tourist stop, once the last service station for a long, long ways on the route), you’ll spend the next 10 miles on some of the most windy, curving, scenic road you are going to see. No worries as it is two lanes the entire way and paved. That should put you in Oatman around time for lunch.
Enjoy Oatman until you’ve had your fill, and then it is down the hill towards Laughlin. This will allow you a number of hours at your hotel to see Laughlin, drink, gamble, enjoy dinner, and a good nights sleep along the river. Hit Nelson on your way back to Las Vegas the next day, and you’ve seen and done history that many only dream and read about. All while getting back to Las Vegas in plenty of time to catch a nap and be back in Vegas mode for the evening!
Hope this helps!
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Every NBA team is headed to Las Vegas this summer. The league announced Tuesday that for the first time, all 30 teams will play in Las Vegas at NBA Summer League. The NBA is also adding an extra day to the schedule for the event, which this year will run from July 6-17 at UNLV.
- Virgin Atlantic Is Adding Nonstop Service Between Las Vegas And Heathrow – Members: Read Ted’s Take on this story, and add your own comment or question for us
- 5 Steps To A Perfectly Packed Suitcase – Members: Read Ted’s Take on this story, and add your own comment or question for us
- $4.5M Queensridge Penthouse Was Owned By Rich Little — Video – Members: Read Ted’s Take on this story, and add your own comment or question for us
- Map Of Where To Go If You Are Injured In Las Vegas
Vegas Videos You’ll Enjoy
So you want to take a one day tour to the Grand Canyon. Do you go to the West Rim or do you go to the South Rim? What’s the difference?
(Producers Notes Take a tour of Mandalay Bay with us…we got spotted by a pit boss and dealer…they called us out! We got a kick out of it!
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