Late TR – Family Trip – August 2013

Long time lurker here, but seldom post. When I went to post this report, I had to open a new account, if that tells you anything. So, in effect, this will be my ‘first’ post ever!

My husband and I go to Las Vegas fairly regular; however, we hadn’t been since 2009, as we’ve had a daughter’s wedding and grandchildren since then and had a trip to the beach and some other smaller trips in between! This year, he mentioned that we should plan a trip and go with my parents for the Barrett Jackson Auto Auction, as my dad is an avid car builder. My parents’ last trip was in 1988, right after the birth of our oldest daughter. I asked if they thought the next time they went to Vegas would be with her 25 years later???

Upon checking flights, it was pretty costly during that time, so we figured we’d go in August instead and he could just watch the auction on TV!

As plans were made, we included our daughters (22 and 25) and their spouse/significant other. So now we’re up to 8!

Flew Allegiant Air out of Springfield, MO for five nights. Landed and headed to the luggage carousel where we were met by Presidential Limo! OMG! We had ordered a super stretch and they had sent us a super stretch ESCALADE! Starting off right!

We arrived at the Four Queens and learned only my husband and I had reservations! What?!?!?!? I started digging out paperwork for the other three rooms, when I was told it wasn’t necessary. They would put the others in suites for the night! Threw bags in room(s) and then out to watch the light show!

We had a light snack at Magnolia’s and did a walk around Fremont Street.

We got to bed around 4:00 a.m. Parents called at 8:00 a.m. and were dressed and ready to go! The next morning, they called at 7:00 a.m. By the following day, I told my husband, “Let’s beat them at their own game!”

From here on, I’ll break into sections.

Golden Nugget breakfast buffet (buy 1/get 1 free – ACG)
Fremont breakfast buffet
Hennessey’s for breakfast (buy 1/get 1 free on Tuesday’s)
Dunkin’ Donuts
Heart Attack Grill (not impressed, but the boys were)
Magnolia’s (a couple of meals)
Circus Circus dinner buffet (pleasantly surprised) – we all had free from MyVegas (more on that later)
Jean Philippe Patisserie (Aria) – again, all free from MyVegas
Tony Roma’s (steak and lobster special)


We’re pretty entertaining ourselves, but we did casino hop (bought bus tickets for 3 days) quite a bit. As my parents hadn’t been since 1988 and our kids had never been, I tried to cram all the first-timer stuff into 5 days, as well as combine some of the old with the new. We rented a wheel chair for my mom (thanks Las Vegas Wheelchairs!) I darn near killed my son-in-law with all the running! We saw the Fountains at Bellagio, volcano at Mirage, had our picture taken with $1,000,000 at Binions (the girls got carded here!), visited the pyramid and Excalibur, went to the Coke store and M&M World.

We used our free comedy club tickets at the Riviera (American Casino Guide) and left before it was half over. Not very funny and it was COLD in there!

We walked (did I mention it was AUGUST?) to the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop, very little line and the ‘misters’ were very much appreciated! I knew it would be small from reading reports here, but WOW! Didn’t realize how small. Oh well, the kids enjoyed it. As we were on the bus the next day, we realized we could have ridden the bus and gotten off at the Bonneville Transit Center and been RIGHT THERE! Ugh…

We left my parents downtown one day and ventured over to the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino with the kids. Mercy, that’s a small trek in itself to get to the pick up spot at Fashion Show Mall! We all liked it, but the shuttle guy kept telling us he might not be able to bring us back if he had hotel guests. OK, heard you the first six times. After that, the girls shopped at the Forum Shops with hubby and I people watched (saw a dude wash his hair in the fountain).

We all visited Madame Tussauds, and were disappointed that a lot of the exhibits were gone. No one but us knew the difference, as the kids and parents hadn’t been before, but still…

We went through the Auto Collections Museum at the Quad. Pleasantly surprised with their renovations. We saw some cars that were scheduled to be in the Barrett Jackson auction, so that smoothed over not being there for the actual auction. Nice way to kill a bit of time, especially when you are with ‘car people’.

Did a walk-through of New York New York. Youngest daughter and I were going to ride the roller coaster but we chickened out. Tried to find Dad a piece of cheesecake in there and came up empty handed!

We visited the “World’s Largest Gift Shop”. Learned they have no bathroom there…visited the one at the gas station behind it. Discovered they had 99 cent beers. I thought we would put them on ice in a trash can in the room. Husband thought bathroom sink was fine. It was…UNTIL someone has to use the bathroom and use the tub to wash their hands!

Saw work being done at the old Sahara. Kind of sad to see it being gutted, but maybe it will be nice. I didn’t like seeing all the skeletons and empty lots on the strip. While I’m not opposed to new, I still like some of the old thrown in too. That’s what makes Vegas fun for me, kind of like visiting old friends and making new. I think I may just be sentimental.

About the only gambling we did was in the middle of the night or while we were waiting on someone to come down to the casino in the mornings. One afternoon, spouse and I went off to El Cortez for a while, just to play slots. My Dad won each of the girls about $50 shooting craps. He kept wanting me to play and I’d watch him and watch him and STILL NOT GET IT. Bless his heart, he’d explain over and over and I STILL DIDN’T GET IT! There’s a reason I play slots…put in money, hit spin, say goodbye…no thought processes involved!

We visited all the down town casinos except the Plaza and wished we would have made it in there! I didn’t make it in The D, but Mom and oldest daughter did one morning for a McD run.

About Circus Circus…my parents took me there when I was 17 and while I’ve been back a few times and considered it to be somewhat of a toilet (and that’s OK, I sometimes like toilets), I wanted all of them to have the ‘experience’. We were pretty impressed. I don’t know if we just hit it on a good night or what, but no one had any complaints…and it was free. On the way to Circus Circus, we walked through Slots of Fun. Have they cleaned that up a bit? I didn’t stick to the carpet!

There’s just never enough Vegas time. At the beginning of the week, I’d think, “Oh we have all week to do…” Then it was just gone! My Vegas motto is “There’s no time for sleeping in Vegas…do it on the plane, coming or going, but not there!” Our kids now know why we never took them with us until now. Had to be at the airport super early and slept all the way home. My husband kept waking me up to tell me I was snoring. Oh well, most of the plane was asleep and snoring right along with me, who cares??

Sorry for the length of the report and for taking so long to write it. I debated over it for a couple of months, then decided I should, just so I could relive it again!

It was a wonderful trip and I was looking over my notes the other day and realized all the things we DIDN’T get to do. But that’s OK, Mom and Dad had such a good time, we are going back next summer with my brother and his wife! I will consider myself a lucky girl by having two trips of a lifetime with my folks, one with my kids, and one with my brother and his wife! Let the planning begin!