Tips from a Townie
It turns out that there are good things and not so good things to do in Las Vegas. I’ve done a few that should be kept on the down-low, like New Year’s Eve on the Strip or walking from the Stratosphere to Mandalay Bay (Trust me, get a cab!). With these follies in mind, I’ll share some “Things to Do” recommendations while at EXHIBITORLIVE.
The High Roller baby! It isn’t your average Ferris wheel. In fact, some Las Vegans get downright testy when you call it that. The High Roller is an observation wheel — the biggest in the world as a matter of fact. It stands at a whopping 550-feet-tall. That’s nine feet taller than the Singapore Flyer (who knew) and 107 feet taller than the London Eye (Take that you Lymies!). The High Roller is located in the heart of the Strip and is the focal point of the LINQ promenade. Once aboard the 40-passenger pod you will have 30 minutes to enjoy a cocktail and the view. Whether you choose to ride day or night, you will have spectacular views of the Strip, the valley and the mountains (see if you can spy some Red Rock’s to the west).
The Auto Collection is still there at the LINQ with over 350 classic cars that span more than a century. It’s an auto enthusiast’s dream! And if you’ve never been or maybe it’s been awhile (15 years is really more than awhile. But who’s counting right?), it’s certainly worth a gander. And did you know that every single car is available for purchase? Even if you don’t have thousands of dollars to spare, you can stand by these beauties and snap as many pictures as you want, for FREE!
Speaking of FREE… Here are some great attractions that are just that… FREE!
1. The Aquarium at the Silverton – Located at the Silverton Hotel, South of Mandalay Bay on Blue Diamond Road and I-15, is an 117,000-gallon saltwater aquarium complete with Mermaids. While you’re there, take a stroll through Bass Pro Shop to round out the aquatic-themed adventure!
2. P3 Studio at The Cosmopolitan – I LOVE The Cosmopolitan! And located on the third floor of The Cosmopolitan is a glass-walled artist studio featuring contemporary artists from around the world who create interactive artwork as part of a residency program. You can watch the artists from outside the studio or go inside, interact with the artist… maybe even help create a masterpiece. You can see P3 Studio’s artist-in-residence in action Wednesdays through Sundays, 6 p.m.-11 p.m.
3. The ‘Welcome to Las Vegas’ Sign – After hanging with mermaids and artists, you must stop at this 50-year-old iconic sign for a memorable photo op. I’m not going to lie, I was very relieved when they actually made a parking area for tourists to park and snap their pictures. Sure beats the heck out playing Frogger with the tourists trying to cross the boulevard. Stop, snap some selfies, and if a ‘GOOD’ Elvis is there, tip him $5 bucks to take your pic with him.
4. Ethel M Chocolate Factory & Botanical Cactus Garden – Last but certainly not least is this sweet factory located about a 15-minute drive east on Tropicana from the Strip. Forrest Mars Sr. (of M&Ms fame) opened this factory in 1981 and named it after his mother Ethel. There is a short tour that lets you see chocolate in the making through the factory’s windows. The factory store at the end allows you to sample and purchase these sweet confections. While you may think you can skip the Botanical Cactus Garden… DON’T! Featuring more than 300 types of cactus it also has a soft spot for me in that the first roadrunner I ever saw in the desert was in that cactus garden. Keep you’re eyes peeled! Wile E. Coyote must not be too far behind right?
In past years during EXHIBITOR you may have been in Vegas on Valentine’s Day and St. Patty’s Day. This year the first day of EXHIBITORLIVE will fall on March 2 – ‘Old Stuff Day.’ This is not a day to do the “same old” stuff however. This is for doing just the opposite. These suggestions may require a rental car, but I promise they will not leave you thinking you just did the “same old” stuff in Vegas.
NOT the Same Old Stuff in Las Vegas
1. Springs Preserve – This 180-acre cultural and historic attraction sits on the site of former natural springs that contributed to “Las Vegas” – the meadows in Spanish. It features many exhibits, a Botanical Gardens, trails and The Springs Café.
2. National Atomic Testing Museum – It captures all of the history, propaganda, and controversy of the nuclear tests that once took place only an hour away from Las Vegas. See 10,000 sq. feet of interactive displays, short films, timelines and much more. You can even test your own radioactivity!
3. Pinball Hall of Fame – Featuring a total of 141 pinball machines from the 1950s through the 1990s, including retro arcade games like Super Mario Brothers. The best thing of all? You can play every single one of them. Just remember to bring a pocketful of quarters.
I’m sure there are things that I’ve missed or left off on purpose because you guys will be asking me these questions again in November 2015 for EDPA Access. Please don’t be shy, share your ideas or favorites for either list!
I’m really looking forward to seeing everyone at this year’s show. Remember: registration for ExhibitorLIVE is now OPEN! Click here to access registration and receive an Exhibits Only pass courtesy of Classic Exhibits.
And in case you missed it, here’s my Where to Eat in Las Vegas during EXHIBITOR blog post.
Western Regional Manager (and Vegas Local)
Based in Portland, Oregon, Classic Exhibits Inc. designs and manufacturers portable, modular, and custom-hybrid exhibit solutions. Classic Exhibits products are represented by an extensive distributor network in North America and in select International markets. For more information, contact us at 866-652-2100 or www.classicexhibits.com.
Tags: Classic Exhibits, Ethel M. Chocolates, Exhibitor, ExhibitorLIVE, Las Vegas, LINQ, National Atomic Testing Museum, P3 at the Cosmopolitan, Pinball Hall of Fame, Springs Preserve, The Aquarium at Silverton, The High Roller