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Stateside Adventures in Vegas

Vegas Strong!  Our trip to the big city of lights that never sleeps…

Writing in my blog while I was in Europe proved to be a much more daunting task than imagined.  We crammed so much into each day that it was difficult to keep up on all fronts.  I wrote a lot about our adventures, and as the photos and editing is completed over the next few weeks the stories will be published on here too.

In the meantime, today’s adventure finds us in Las Vegas for the Boise State Football game.  As usual I have to maximize each opportunity and this has been no exception.

Harmon Travel is the travel agency for the Broncos and we just joined this trip – largely because of the charter flight options and the transportation to and from events, etc  In the long run it’s not much more expensive than a doing it yourself trip and a lot more fun to be with a few hundred other crazy Boise State fans.  We are staying at the Hard Rock Hotel in Vegas.

Our flight was short since it was direct.  Once arrived and luggage claimed the flight was boarded onto four busses to the hotel.  Since they were slightly staggered, and the hotel was ready for us, the check in process went relatively smoothly.  Our room was ready a little early so we went directly there.  Lunch was next.

Only in Vegas would you find Pink Tacos and a Zebra with a sombrero!

Pink Tacos was just too curious a name not to stop in.  Since dinner plans were early, there’s nothing better than some chips and salsa and maybe a taco and margarita to tide us over for the afternoon.  Pink Tacos did not disappoint.  The service was great and the food was excellent.  A little pricey for tacos I will admit, but hey – it’s the Hard Rock in Vegas and nothing is inexpensive!  The pink tacos are uniquely prepared in that the meat and cheese is fried in the taco shell, then the rest of the ingredients added once it is prepared, including avocado, pico de gallo, and pickled red onion (hence “pink” tacos).  They are uniquely theirs and quite delicious.  Their bar sports many varieties of tequila and many flavors of margaritas.  We just had the originals and they were a little sweet for my personal taste, but totally appropriate.  The decor was interesting starting at the entrance with the Mexican zebra!

Exploring the hotel was next.  Hard Rock as usual did not disappoint.  With cases and guitars and tons of memorabilia throughout every nook and cranny we wandered as long as we could.  From Michael Jackson, to Johnny Cash – from Prince to Madonna, there’s was something for everyone.  What a concept that they came up with to collect and preserve all those great things!  Since so many concerts and performances have happened right here in Vegas, they are never for want of things to display and that they do.

The casino was lively most of the day with plenty of spots to gamble if that’s what you are interested in.  There is a spa and pool and all the usual amenities of a big Vegas property.  We however decided on the path least traveled.  We boarded the bus at 4:30 to head to Freemont Street where the pep rally was going to happen.

The D Hotel from Freemont Street Experience

In the meantime, we bought tickets to “Marriage can be Murder” at the D Hotel on Freemont Street.  So instead of the pep rally, we headed to the dinner show.  While the advertised start time was 6:30 – we were told to be in line by 5:45.  I’m not sure that was truly necessary, but that’s what we did.  We were joined by Van’s brother and wife for some fun adult entertainment for the night.

The performance was an interactive “who done it” murder mystery.  I’m not really sure what it had to do with Marriage, but it was a fun night and the title got us into the door.  There were gunshots, poisonings, and other similarly catastrophic events narrated by the funny and talented Mimi and investigated by the equally ridiculous cop in short shorts.  We laughed a lot, failed miserably at figuring out who committed the crimes, and overall had a good time.  The food was decent and the time spent with family priceless.  Turns out there were five actors who played a part in the production some of which seemed to be audience members.  They change the production every three months, so you can always return for a new mystery too!  It’s one of the longest running murder mystery productions around, touting being in Vegas for 24 years now.


Today is game day, so despite my early awakening, we have a full Boise State day ahead.  Pregame activities, game, and then dinner tonight with the whole family including the kids this time.  No special plans, we will just spend some quality time together.

Vegas is a crazy town we all agree.  There are so many lights that even at Christmas it just looks like everyday here.  Freemont Street sports a very tall Christmas tree in the center of the Freemont Experience, but otherwise, the glitz and glamour looks mostly the same as it does at everyday of the year.  Entertainers flock here regularly, more than 30 weddings happen here daily, and endless parties and events are celebrated. Las Vegas is uniquely Las Vegas.


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