So I got an offer for $99 for 3nites and slot tourney entry at the Stardust. enlisted a co-worker to come on down, we added and extra nite at $75 (the holiday sunday) and off we went. we flew NWA out of Flint MI which is a great little airport. we connected in Detroit on the way down and Minneapolis on the way back. The trip back was great with about 2.5hrs to MIN then 1.5hrs to Flint, great way to break it up. Rented a car with dollar upgraded to a Taurus with coupon. My friend had invited 2 buddies to come down so the car was plenty big enough. I'm 41 but quite fit (aspiring triathlete) my 3 travel companions were all 27, 2 were out of shape and my co-worker is pretty fit. I could not believe how little the other two guys liked to walk and when they did they were slow as slow can be. I really wanted to play lots of low limit Texas hold-em, a few Tourneys and see the a couple of cheap shows. My travel companions wanted to go to clubs and shop!

SUNDAY after picking up the car checked out the Klondike and took a pic at the Welcome to Las Vegas sign. Made our way down the strip for a while but decided traffic was to heavy, detoured to pick up room essentials then checked in. No problem, West Tower rooms are more than adequate. The two lazy guys had a room on the 12th floor that was kinda beat up, ours on the 25th was OK. Since it was getting late we ate at the Stardust using the $3 off coupon. I had the Prime Rib-too salty one guy had steak and shrimp other had chicken. all were affordable but i guess you get what you pay for. Drove over to the Rio for the guys to check out the eye candy then back to the Stardust. I walked over to the Riviera and played $2-4 limit poker. played about 2.5hrs had few beers few bloody marys and cashed out about $40 in the good.

MONDAY headed early to Mandalay Bay $35 10am tourney, signed up then had a quick McD's breakfast. Tourney ended up being limit for the first hour then No-limit. Made it to no-limit with very few chips left and tried all in with 10-Q suited, no luck and i'm out. Checked out some more casinos bought $1 chips at the ones I thought were cool. Back to the Stardust for some pool time. Ellis Island for dinner steak special, for $5 and $1 beer you can't go wrong. Over to the Tropicana after dinner for the Comedy show, good value for the money. I have had good luck all three times i went to this club. Back to the Stardust, my roomie was beat so he retired the other two guys saw WYNN and i played more $2-4 limit at the Riviera. Played about 4hrs until i was cross-eyed (more beers and bloody mary's-The Riviera makes a good Bloody Mary-does anyone else eat the Olives in Bloody Mary's?) got a breakfast buffet comp for the next morning and headed for bed about 3:30.

TUESDAY up early had to register for slot tourney. it was two sessions mine were 10:30 and 12:45. had a cold machine in the morning. Went to the Elvis-O-Rama museum to pick up my daughter some souveniers. drove around a little in the dumpy areas and back for session #2. needed all kinds of sevens to get in the money. hit twice in the first couple of minutes then it cooled out again. ended up not getting any money so the final room bill was $183 for 4 nites split two ways. I'm Canadian and up here a nite in a quality inn costs $125 so I was still happy. met up poolside again for the afternoon. Tried hitting some jackpots on the WOF just like my last trip, but only donated this time. We headed off to The Bellagio/Monte Carlo and Ceasars that nite. Our timing was great with the Bellagio, we headed to the Fontana lounge just at dusk, saw a little of the bands set and two fountain shows. Luck be a Lady (my fave) and Viva Las Vegas (my second fave) i don't think my young travel companions appreciated it as much as I did. Headed to Freemont street about 11pm, the one young guy with us did not gamble much and as soon as we hit Freemont St he hit Glitter Gulch. No Cover $10 beers and $20 lap dances, he dropped $60 in 15 minutes LOL. Got some more $1 chips then had the Binions $5 steak special. This is a lot of food at midnite!! great steak though. Headed back to the Stardust and over to the Riviera for more $2-4 limit hold-em. I was buying in for $60 nitely and had not been busted yet! this nite was very entertaining sat at a table with a dealer from the Excalibur who was dressed all in pink and was giving money away for some reason. only problem was i couldn't catch a good hand. This guy got the nickname PINK/ELTON and ELVIS by this other guy at the end of the table who had a glass eye and the other one stared off in the distance and never shut up!. He figured he was a great poker player who never hand more than $20 in front of him but as PINK said he was like a wart, just wouldn't go away. very entertaining nite at the poker table. i lost about $20 but had numerous Bloody Marys and a few beers and another $5 buffet comp. got to bed about 4:30am. My one travel companion who checked out Glitter Gulch decided while we play poker he was going to a strip joint behind the Stardust, he dropped about $150 here and tried getting a "girl" from the lobby to his room. couldn't talk her into less than $250 so he dropped the subject. Poker costs alot less!!!!!

WEDNESDAY went off strip to the NEVADA PALACE for another tourney, we got up about 8-8:30 and drove out there. It is a small locals casino, they had 21 entries, us 3 and 18 locals who play every morning, 7 days a week, 365 days a year!!! 15 /18 were smokers and they allow smoking at the table. everyone was very nice and wanted to know all about us. The tourney was limit again for the first hour and then no-limit. 45 mins in i got dealt A-Q flop comes Q-?-? then the turn is Q. coming to the river I had raised a couple of times till there was just mysely and another, the river was a J no flush draw. he bets i raise that puts me all-in. I have a set of Q's with A kicker, he thows down a pocket pair of J's for J's over Q's and i'm done again. i considered it a bad beat, never would have happened in No-Limit (atleast thats my story) stopped on the way home at Payless shoes and Target for the boys to get some duds for clubbing, i went for lunch at the THAI PLACE next door. WHAT GREAT FOOD!!!! back to poolside for a while then returned the rental much to the chagrin of my out-of-shape travel companions. I bought tickets to The Rat Pack Trubute show at the Half Price booth and the boys headed off to Casinos they had not hit yet (they were Vegas virgins this was my 5th trip so I bypassed some of there adventures) I thought the show was good, funny thing was the Elvis at the Elvis-O-Rama museum played Dean Martin. The show was at the Greek Isles. Played some VP at the bar while waiting. Had 3 bloody marys and cashed for $15 playing Nickels!!! after the show came back to my room and had a message from the boys that they were way up the strip checking out Studio 54 and Coyote Ugly. I headed over to the familiar haunts of the Riviera poker area. Bought in for $60 again, there was a couple of guys who wanted to make a 1-2 no limt game. There was 6 English guys who had just arrived in Vegas that afternoon, they came to play low limit poker but were cautious of playing No-Limit first day there, I was leery because I figured I needed to buy in for atleast $110-$140 to be competetive. Finally everyone agreed to play with no higher buy in than $100. I broke out another $20 and with the chips I had it brought me to $75. Off we go in my first No Limit cash game. I find out the guy to my left had been down to Vegas in May to play in some of the Hi-Low Omaha events of the WSOP. The guy to my right said he played in a couple of Limit events this year also, S**T i was a little intimidated! anyways had my stack ran up to close to a hundred, it was getting close to 3:30am and just before my BB turn i caught some cards that I played, lost a good pot on the River, now i'm down to ~$45 bucks. Sit through my blinds and then get dealt A-J suited. I call the Big Blind, when the betting gets to BB guy he raises $10, I put him on pocket 8's 9's or maybe even lower. decide to raise all-in, everyone folds except BB who calls me and shows A-Q. S**T flop comes A-A-? turn is useless as is river. i get beat by his kicker can't even get close to my flush and i'm done. get back to room down $75.
I got to play lots of Texas Hold-em and probably lost $125-$150 so for the money lost/hrs played ratio it was good entertainment.

THURSDAY got up early played some VP cashed out up $10 then gave it plus another $10 trying to hit the big one on some progressive .25 slots. took the 10am shuttle to the airport and said goodbye till next time

SUMMARY i stayed at the Stardust a year ago May then this May was at the RIVIERA, i think the Riviera was just as good. BR in the Monaco tower was smaller but pool and buffet were better at the RIV. The Fontana room and fountain shows still are cool no matter how many times I go. Missed playin SIGMA at the Frontier, also missed my Mexican meal at the Frontier. Steak at BINIONS better than EI but 11pm is late for a big meal. Westward Ho has real nice .50 chips. .99 menu at the Riviera has some good pizza slices. .99 Heinekens are served really slow this time.