This is old news because we actually were in Vegas over Conference Weekend. The problem is that we then left our camera at my parents house and I was just barely able to upload our pictures to our computer. Everybody ready for a travel log?
We went down to Vegas because I had fall break at school and we were looking for the chance to "get out of town". Lucky for us, my sister Alysia lives in Vegas with her husband and two kids. We drove down on Friday afternoon, and the drive took quite a bit longer than usual because of the crowds on the roads. The St. George marathon was the next morning, so once we got through St. George, the roads cleared up quite a bit.
Our first day in Vegas, Saturday, we went to Bonnie Springs, where there is a little train ride, a petting zoo and an "old town" re-creation. Ada seemed to really enjoy herself in the petting zoo. Here are a couple of pictures of her checking out some roosters and ducks.
Here's a cute picture of Ellie, Ada and Reese sitting in the log saddles. Obviously, Reese is enjoying herself more than anybody else.
Saturday night (after Priesthood Session), we went to downtown Vegas (Fremont Street) and witnessed the true nastiness of Vegas. I wonder how many people, immediately after listening to the prophet speak left to spend time with the go-go girls, the Chippendales and skanky strippers...
The Fremont Street Experience was pretty cool because they have a huge overhead light show that they play at night. The screens are 90 feet above the street and run for 5 blocks, creating the world's largest video screen. It was pretty cool to see, but not something that you need to see more than once.
On Sunday between conference sessions we went on a leisurely drive through Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area. It was a good chance for us to use our National Parks Pass that we purchased on our summer trip in July. It was a bit of a letdown, but it was still nice to have a picnic out in nature. If you look really closely in the picture below, you can see Indian hand prints on the rock (look directly above the white sign, slightly above and to the left of Alison's right shoulder).
For the climax of the trip, Alison and I left Ada with Kevin and Alysia and we spent the night at the MGM Grand. We upgraded to the deluxe room in the new west wing. The hotel (which is the world's largest with 6,852 rooms) was huge. We wandered the Casino and then walked along the strip. We ate dinner at PF Chang's in the Planet Hollywood Casino and did a little shopping both there and at Caesar's Palace.
Every time that I spend time on the strip, I realize how little there is for people like us to do. We aren't exactly out looking for a nightlife experience, we don't gamble (not even a cent on this whole trip), and we avoid most of the people and the shows. We did enjoy watching a little baseball and Monday Night Football in the sports betting areas. We just don't fit in well - but it was nice to have a night without Ada.