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TR - The Rhinoman Anniversary Report -- Aug. 4th-9th

Kenosha, WI
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TR – The Rhinoman Anniversary Report -- Aug. 4th-9th

Even though I am not completely finished typing up my report, I will post what I have so far. I hope to have it finished by later today, or the latest tomorrow morning.

Will post as replies.

Thanks to all who answered my questions in preparing this trip. And thanks to those who post their TRs on here which have given me many ideas and inspirations for my trips. I only hope that I can return the favor in some small way!

Kenosha, WI
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1. Re: TR – The Rhinoman Anniversary Report -- Aug. 4th-9th

Background:

We are a young couple in our early to mid-40s. This is my 7th trip to Vegas, my wife’s 6th trip. We usually go for 3 or 4 days, but this trip was for 6 days and turned out to be the perfect number of days. The main purpose of this trip was to celebrate our 24th Anniversary.

We flew Delta for the first time, and this was also the first time the flight was not non-stop. There were some weather issues between MKE and MSP that delayed our flights both ways, but we managed to make our connecting flights both ways, and we were successfully reunited with our luggage on both ends of the trip. WHEW!!!

I had reserved both a convertible and a full-size car through Alamo, but based on the weather forecast for the week, I decided to cancel the convertible and keep the full-size. Good choice, since the only time the temps were under 100 were between the hours of 2am and 7am!!! I reserved both using the Cosco discount and coupon found in this forum, and even though I was not able to check-in for the car online before the trip, I was able to use the kiosk without any issues. WHEW!!!

We had an early flight into Vegas on Saturday, August 4th, and an early departure from Vegas on Thursday, August 9th. We stayed all 5 nights at the Rio, fully comped. This was my 4th stay at the Rio, and my wife’s 2nd stay.

We did a lot of new and different things on this trip, compared to past trips. As usual, my well laid out plans got changed up quite a bit as the trip went on, but that is OK. We had a blast!!!

Writing a TR is good therapy for post-Vegas syndrome, especially since I am not sure when I will be able to get back to Vegas again!!!

This report is going to be rather long, so you can’t say I didn’t warn you. If you don’t like to read long TRs, then please proceed to the Tipping and Children in Vegas threads immediately.

Well, without further ado, here is my report…….

Kenosha, WI
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2. Re: TR – The Rhinoman Anniversary Report -- Aug. 4th-9th

Pre-trip – Friday, August 3rd

Normally I wouldn’t include something like this, but it had the potential of really ruining our trip!

As lunchtime approached, I could feel the familiar scratchiness in my throat, and it just kept getting worse. This could only mean that I am in for a few days of a sore throat and several days of hacking and coughing. Not the ideal situation when I am less than 24 hours from leaving for Vegas!!! Normally when this happens, I will ride it out for a few days and see how it goes before finally giving in and going to the doctor, but not this time! I call my doctor only to find out that he is completely booked for the day! I give it another couple hours, but I can feel it getting worse! I finally decide to leave work early and go to the walk-in clinic. I arrive only to find out that there is an hour wait!!! As I sit in the waiting room I suddenly realize that I am surrounded by more sick people, and that this could potentially make things worse for me!!! But at that point, I didn’t really have much of a choice.

It’s finally my turn to see the doctor, and after jamming some long q-tips down my throat, they ruled out strep and told me that it was viral, and that there was no need for an anti-biotic. They suggested gargling with warm salt water (yuch!!!) and taking Tylenol or ibuprophin for the pain. Normally I am glad to hear that I don’t need any medication, but this time I was hoping for something that would help kick it out real quick!

I went home to finish packing and took an Aleve (the only pain reliever we had in the house), and went to bed early hoping for the best!

As it turns out, I ended up taking one Aleve each day for the first 3 days, and each day my throat got better, and it ended up not even being a factor! WHEW!

Now, on with the REAL report………..

Kenosha, WI
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3. Re: TR – The Rhinoman Anniversary Report -- Aug. 4th-9th

Day 1 – Saturday, August 4th

After a somewhat decent flight, we arrived in Las Vegas on-time at 10:45am. Made the long trek to the baggage claim and our luggage was already on the carousel. Sweet!!! Made our way out to the blast furnace to catch the rental car shuttle. We were one of the last ones to board, so we were on our way in no time. As usual, I was so glad to be in Vegas I forgot to tell the shuttle driver “no tunnel, please”, and you know what? We got tunneled! I got a little upset, but my wife told me to just take a few deep breaths, and then I felt a little better. I decided I was not going to let this ruin our vacation! As it turns out, we made it to the rental car center in only 6 minutes instead of the standard 7 minutes, so all’s well that ends well. I tipped the driver for unloading our luggage and told him “Good job!”. He gave me a funny look, but took the money anyway. I turned around only to be stopped by a large family with a lot of luggage that seemed to be lost. They just stood there looking around, not realizing they were totally in the way! Finally made our way around them and headed inside. My wife was not happy to see the long line at the Alamo counter, but I told her not to worry. I went straight to a kiosk, and 2 minutes later, we are heading out to the lot to pick out our car. There was a nice selection in the Full Size section, and we settled on a white Dodge Charger. Great car!

This was our first time arriving in Vegas during the day since our first trip in 2008, so it was a somewhat different experience. It would be many hours before we would be able to see the lights of the strip! Since we were going to be staying longer than normal this trip, we decided to stop at Wal-Mart to stock up. The Wal-Mart is no different in Vegas than it is here back home….very scary! LOL! We picked up a small case of bottled water, some regular and diet Pepsi, and some snacks for the room. Thinking we were done, I was ready to get out of there! However, my wife wanted to do some looking around while we were there. After wandering around the store for about 20 minutes, I was starting to feel a little dehydrated, so I went up to the coolers near the registers and grabbed a bottle of water. I drank half of it and started feeling a little better. Finally, we were ready to get out of this place! (In case you were wondering, I did pay for the water.)

Finally arrive at the Rio, and we valet the car and ask for help with our luggage. Since it is so busy, it takes about 15 minutes before a bellman is available to get our luggage. While waiting, my wife goes inside to get in line to check-in. Once our luggage has been picked up, I head inside to find that there are now only a few people ahead of my wife in line. Sweet! Once at the check-in counter, I ask if the Penthouse Suite is available. He just giggles, and offers me a Premium Suite on a high floor with a strip view for $20 per night. I decline, and we are given a regular suite in the Ipanema Tower on the 3rd floor facing the Palms. Being on the 3rd floor meant never having to wait long for the elevator. Great deal!!!

Seeing that the line at the ticket counter was short, we decided to go ahead and pick up our Penn & Teller tickets for tonight’s show. One less thing to worry about later. Now, finally up to our room!

Entering our room, I immediately see that the carpeting is somewhat frayed where it meets the tiled floor. I throw my hands up in the air and say to my wife, “Can you believe they gave us this room? I am so tired of crappy carpeting!!!” She tells me to take a few deep breaths, and I begin to settle down. Sometimes you really do get what you pay for! We open the curtains to see the glorious view of the Palms, and all is well in Rhinoland.

I called down for our luggage, and 10 minutes later, it arrives at our door. Sweet! Since it is now almost 1pm (3pm our time) and we haven’t eaten anything since breakfast, we decide to wait until after lunch to unpack and settle in. We head downstairs to the All-American Bar & Grille and order a couple burgers. Mine was a regular cheeseburger, and my wife had a swiss cheese mushroom burger. I got mine with the waffle fries, and my wife got the potato salad. The burgers were excellent! They tasted like they just came off the grill in our own backyard. Wife also ordered the Cheese Ale Soup, which she said was very good. Total bill with tip was around $40. Since we had a little over $100 in RCs to use, we charged it to the room.

Back up to the room to unpack. First we load the fridge with drinks so they can start chilling, and then I put all of our “valuables” in the safe. Once we are all unpacked, we take a nap to get ready for the evening. By now we had been awake since 3:30am our time, and we were in desperate need of some sleep!!!

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4. Re: TR – The Rhinoman Anniversary Report -- Aug. 4th-9th

Day 1 (Continued) Penn & Teller

We finally woke up and got downstairs just in time for the 6pm Show in the Sky. We have always missed this show on previous trips, but decided we were going to finally see it since we were actually going to be there when it was showing! I can now check this off my To Do list. Not much else to say about it. I would never go out of my way to see it.

The plan was to eat dinner before the Penn & Teller show, but since we had a late lunch, we weren’t hungry yet. Instead, we hopped around and played some slots. I played Invaders from the Planet Moolah and some Lucky Penny Bright Diamonds, but not much luck. My wife played Planet Moolah and Golden Goddess with about the same luck. I also gave the Grease slot a try, and even though I hit one of the bonus rounds, I still played through my $20 pretty quick. Along the way, I noticed the Epic Monopoly machine which looked interesting. I made a mental note of where it was located with plans to return to it later.

It was getting closer to 8pm, so we headed towards the P&T Theater. Since the doors don’t open until 8:10pm, we still had some time to kill. We noticed there were some nice couches in the Starbucks right outside the theater, so we headed in there to relax for a while. Ended up meeting a guy who was there with his family (wife and 5 kids). As we talked, the rest of his family started showing up one by one. This was his family’s first time to Vegas. We had a nice conversation, and it was nice to meet each one of his family.

The doors were finally opened, and we headed into the theater. We had first row seats in the Mezzanine section which we got through the Travelzoo deal. While sitting closer to the stage is the best for this show, these really were pretty good seats. We had no trouble seeing everything that was happening during the show. This was our second time seeing this show, and they had added a lot of new material since seeing it in 2009, so we thoroughly enjoyed the show, and laughed a lot throughout. As always, they leave you in awe with some of the tricks they do. I highly recommend this show if you like magic and like to laugh at the same time.

After the show, both Penn and Teller hang out in the lobby to sign autographs and take pictures. At no extra charge!!! We got our pictures taken with both of them. Sweet!

We were getting a little hungry, but nothing sounded really good to us, and we didn’t feel like leaving the property, so we just headed back to the room to have some snacks. After eating and relaxing for a while, my wife was ready to call it a night, so I tucked her in and headed downstairs to finally play some blackjack. I think this is the longest I have been in Vegas without playing any blackjack!!!!

I hopped around a few different tables without much luck. I ended up losing $100 altogether, and then another $100 on LIR. Not the way to start a long trip!!!! I had plans of playing a little more aggressively this trip, but unfortunately, my gambling budget took a big hit before the trip started. I had originally planned on bringing $2K, but after our A/C broke down, along with a couple other emergencies, I was left with $600. Losing $200 of that on the first night was not the way to start!!! I resisted the urge to hit the ATM already, and told myself that I would get it back the next day! Before heading back upstairs, I just had to give the Epic Monopoly a try. I think I found a new favorite slot! I was able to play for quite a while on my $20, and I ended up breaking even. There are some cool bonus rounds and extras along the way. Very cool!!! I finally dragged myself back to the room around 3:30am. I think I finally fell asleep at 4am.

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5. Re: TR – The Rhinoman Anniversary Report -- Aug. 4th-9th

Day 2 – Sunday, August 5th

Well, wouldn’t you know it. 6am and I am wide awake!!! I slowly get up and start to get ready for the day, trying not to wake up my wife too early. I head down to get our car out of valet and self-park it, just in case it gets real busy when we are finally ready to leave. I resist the urge to stop and play as I head back to the room. It was a good thing, too, because I got back to the room to find that my wife was already up and getting ready. Sweet! Today would be our annual South Strip WIN Card Marathon!!! We have always done very well with this in the past, and was looking forward to more of the same!!!

Finally ready to head out, we drive over to the Luxor. Normally, we self-park here since the walk isn’t too bad into the casino. However, since the parking lot is uncovered, and it was looking to be an extremely hot day, we decided to valet instead. As a matter of fact, we ended up valet parking almost everywhere we went because of the heat!

Head inside and stop at the mLife desk to get my wife’s Pearl card. I had finally hit Pearl on my last trip in October, but she wasn’t with to get her card. Next is the Pyramid Café for breakfast. We get seated right away, but we had to wait almost 10 minutes before we finally got a server. I was all ready to get up and complain when a party that got seated well after us almost got waited on before us. My wife told me to take a few deep breaths, and wouldn’t you know it, we finally get waited on. The rest of our time there was very nice. We both ordered the basic All-American breakfast, and they were both delicious as always. With a 10% off coupon, our total with tip came to $35. I had about $12 in Express Comps that I chose to save for another meal, but as it turned out, this was the only meal we had at an mLife property. Bummer!!!!

Now, to the cashier to get our WIN cards. However, we were denied!!!! I guess their rule has always been that each person can get the WIN Cards only once, but they never did a good job of keeping track. This would have been our 4th time getting them, but it wasn’t meant to be. My wife was upset, because she wanted to play blackjack with me, and she will only play if she can use the WIN chips. For some reason, these don’t feel like real money to her, so she doesn’t mind gambling with them. I convinced her to play anyway, and to use the $40 that we were going to buy the WIN Cards with. She agreed, and we found a $10 table. She bought in for the $40, and I bought in for $60. We lost that money so fast!!! This is the first time in all my trips that I have had a losing session at the Luxor!!! Now my wife was really upset! She hates losing, and when it happens that fast, she gets real mad! In an attempt to calm her down, I asked her if she had played with the $60 in WIN Chips instead of the $40 in real chips, and if she had lost the WIN chips if she would have felt the same way. Her response was “No, because those aren’t real money.” I then tried explaining that she would have lost the exact same amount either way, so there really isn’t a difference. She didn’t agree with me. I then told her to just take a few deep breaths, and if looks could kill, I would not be writing this TR right now! Time for the walk of shame through the Mandalay Bay Place shops to get the WIN Cards at Mandalay Bay. We would not be denied there, since they allow you to get them once every 6 months.

Unfortunately, because of my luck at blackjack so far, I stopped keeping track of my play. I have been tracking my play on every trip since my second trip in 2009, but I just lost the desire to keep track on this trip. Because of that, I won’t be able to accurately give you my results for this trip, but I will do my best to remember for this report.

We finally arrive at Mandalay Bay and head straight for the mLife desk. No problem getting the WIN Card vouchers, which we promptly take to the cashier. $40 later, my wife is armed with $60 in WIN chips. However, she gets distracted by some DaVinci Diamonds slots which are near the cashier. We sit down to play, and each put in $20. She gets down to $10 pretty quickly and cashes out. She ended up finding a Super Jackpot Block Party on the other side and played that instead. I finally played through my $20 with no bonus rounds and went to join my wife on the other side. She was doing much better over there, and after a couple bonus rounds, ended up cashing out at $40. We broke even on those machines!

Back to the real reason we are here….Blackjack! Quickly found a $10 table and sat down to play, me with my $60 buy-in, and my wife with her $60 in WIN chips. We played for about 45 minutes, and I believe that we left the table with an extra $120 between the both of us. Made up for the loss at Luxor!!! We cashed in our chips and walked back to the Luxor. The plan was to eat lunch at Nathan’s, but we just weren’t hungry yet. We stopped at the box office to pick up all of our show tickets for the rest of the trip. It was nice being able to do this all at the same place. We had tickets for Spirit of the Dance at NYNY for tonight, Carrot Top tomorrow, and KA on Wednesday.

Time to leave the Luxor! We head outside only to see that there are lots of people waiting for their cars!!! We scan our valet ticket and begin the long wait. It was still before noon, and it felt like it was already 100 degrees!!! Plus there were lots of kids hanging around here as well. As a matter of fact, we saw lots of kids almost everywhere we went this week! I think the only place we went where we didn’t see any kids was the Hard Rock. About 15 minutes later, our car arrives. We zip across the street to the Tropicana. Had it not been for the extreme heat, we probably would have just walked across the street, but forget that!!!!

We self-park at the Tropicana and head inside. Passing by the gelato counter, we decide that it is time for our first gelato of the trip. We figured this would tide us over until later when we would have an early dinner. The guy tried telling us that the frozen yogurt was less expensive, but I just said, “Yeah, but it’s not gelato!” I LOVE ice cream, and since there is no place that I know of to get gelato where we live, I look forward to getting gelato when we are in Vegas. I got the mint chocolate chip, and my wife got the cookies and crème. We sat down and shared both of them. They helped to cool us down real nicely!

Time to head to Club Trop to get our WIN cards and redeem our coupons from slotplayers.com. For $25 each, we were able to get $40 in slot play! Great deal!!! We got to the counter, and the woman didn’t seem to know what we were talking about when we asked for the WIN Cards. Once we said WIN Chips, then she knew what we meant. Whatever, as long as they still have them! I handed her our slotplay coupons, and she took a real long time trying to figure them out and get our slot play loaded onto our cards. We then had to remind her we also wanted the WIN Chips. We were at the counter for a long time, but we got what we came for!!! She then told us we needed to go to the cashier to get the actual WIN chips (which we already knew), and we would have to swipe our players cards at the promotional kiosk to activate our slot play. As it turned out, she loaded $50 onto my card instead of $40. Not sure why, but who am I to complain!!!

We hopped around to various machines and did very well! If I remember correctly, we ended up cashing out a total of $80 or $90 from the original $50 it cost for the slotplay coupons. Not a bad deal!

My wife didn’t feel like playing blackjack, so I ended up using the $30 in WIN chips at a $10 table. Sat at first base and played for a long time. The rest of the guys at the table were there for a bachelor trip and were having a great time. Made the table a lot of fun! The guy at third base started betting large amounts saying it was going to be his last bet, but he ended up winning most of the hands, so he kept going. Then at one point, he put out his last $300 for one more hand. He was dealt an 11, with the dealer showing a face card. He hesitantly pulled out three $100 bills and laid them out to double down. He actually walked away from the table because he couldn’t bear to watch what was happening. By this time, some of the other guys had quit playing, and the guy in the third position was not with them. He was dealt a 9, so he took a hit. He got a 6, which left him with 15. Of course, the “right” thing to do would be to take another hit, but the dealer explained it to him this way, “Look, you have $10 on the table, and this guy has $600. I am not telling you what to do, but you had better not take his 10!” He finally decided to stay, and then the dealer dealt the last guy his card face down. I can’t remember exactly what the dealer had, but she did end up busting. It was a good thing, because the face down card for the last guy was a 4. Very intense, even though I wasn’t the guy making the huge bet!!!

At one point, I finally bought in for another $60, and lost that as well. By now, I am the only one at the table, and my wife and the dealer are having a really deep conversation. So, I just sit there and wait for them to finish talking. In the meantime, the pit boss changes the table to $5, and I decide “what the heck” and buy in for another $40. I finally played it back up to $120 to break even and I cashed out. Time to head back to the room to chill for a while and get ready for the evening.

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6. Re: TR – The Rhinoman Anniversary Report -- Aug. 4th-9th

Day 2 (Continued) Spirit of the Dance

After chilling the room for a little while, we decide to head to NYNY for our show of the evening. By the time we arrived, we were starting to get hungry, so we ate at Nathan’s in the food court. Very good!!! Still having some time to kill before the show, we wander around and see that they have some $5 blackjack tables. May have to check these out after the show! We play a few random slots until the doors open for the show.

Entering into the Broadway Theater you can tell that it used to be a night club. The floor was flat, and there were connecting chairs like you would see in a church. There is a bar right there in the theater, so I guess that is convenient. We had front row center, so the view was fine. If you are a bit shorter and get stuck behind someone who is taller, you might have a hard time seeing the show from further back. The only reason I bought tickets to this show is because my wife really loves Irish dancing, so I knew she would love the show (and she did!). I thought I would be bored out of my mind, but it turned out to be a rather entertaining show.

After the show, we head for the $5 blackjack tables. Bought in for $40, and played for about an hour. A lot of interesting people came and went from the table, and we had a great time. Ended up losing the $40 in the end, but had a great time in the process! We played some more random slots on the way out and won my $40 back.

Since we were getting rather tired, we decided to head back to the Rio for the night. After getting my wife tucked in for the night, I headed downstairs to give the blackjack tables another go. I had much better luck this time! I think I came out about $100 ahead before finally heading back to bed at around 2:00am.

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7. Re: TR – The Rhinoman Anniversary Report -- Aug. 4th-9th

Day 3 – August 6th – Anniversary Day!!!!!

Well, it has finally arrived. Our 24th Anniversary! We wake up rather early and are ready to get our day started. First stop is breakfast at the Grand Lux Café in the Venetian. We self-park here, and head down to the restaurant. Since it was still rather early, we were seated right away. My wife decided to get the buffet, but I chose to get the regular all-american breakfast from the menu. Everything was good with my breakfast, except the hash browns. Fortunately for my wife, the hash browns from the buffet were much better. She wanted to get an omlet, but I guess the line was too long, so she decided against it. We both had our fill, and the total bill with tip was $38. On our way our we noticed that the line to get in was really long! Funny thing is that this kept happening our whole trip…we would get somewhere right before the lines started getting long!

Next we headed to the Grazie desk to see if we can get the Carnivale coupon book, and we each got one. We were able to use coupons for the Da Vinci exhibit, the Gondola ride, and gelato in St. Marks Square. Good deal!!!

As we were walking to the Da Vinci exhibit, we noticed a lot of construction going on. Not sure what they are doing, but I am sure it will be very nice when they are done.

Before heading into the Da Vinci exhibit, they take your pictures in front of a green screen. We thought about getting a picture, but there was just something wrong seeing our goofy faces superimposed over some of the greatest pieces of art known to man! Anyway, it took about an hour to walk through this exhibit and it was amazing!!! I always knew that Da Vinci was a painter, but this guy truly was a genius!!! The stuff that he wrote about and created is just incredible. And to actually see some of his ideas taken and built in real life was very cool! We also learned more about the Mona Lisa than we ever thought we needed to know! LOL! I would highly recommend this exhibit if you can catch it before it leaves. I am assuming that it will be traveling around the country at some point, and if it gets anywhere near where we live, I plan on taking the whole family to see it. It was that good!!!

Next is more gelato in St. Mark’s Square! There is a performance that is just ending as we get to the gelato counter, so we will have to wait a while for the next performance. My wife gets a scoop of coconut and a scoop of pistachio, and I get a scoop of mint chocolate chip and a scoop of cookies and cream. Best. Gelato. Ever! We find a nice bench and watch the Living Statue as we eat our gelato. Before we know it, it is already time for the next performance. There was a singing dutchess, a tumbling court jester, and another guy on stilts. After a couple songs, the dutchess went around the square shaking hands with everyone. As she was getting closer to us, my wife dared me to fist bump her instead of shaking her hand. So, when the dutchess got to me and held out her hand, I held out my fist. She let out a high-pitched “Ooh”, and fist bumped me. My wife couldn’t believe that I would actually do it! She was just kidding! After the show was over, my wife wanted to get a picture of me and the dutchess fist bumping each other, and she was more than happy to oblige. LOL!!!

After some window shopping in the Grand Canal Shoppes, we decide to head back to our room to get some rest and get ready for the evening!

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8. Re: TR – The Rhinoman Anniversary Report -- Aug. 4th-9th

Day 3 – (Continued) – Anniversary Evening!

Time for our Anniversary dinner at N9NE Steakhouse!!! We tried this place for the first time last year after reading about it in this forum (Thanks, Nash!!!!), and LOVED IT!!! We had reservations at 5:30pm, and arrived about 10 minutes early. Our waiter last year was Nate, and he was excellent! We were told that we would have him as a waiter again this year, but when we checked in for our reservation, they informed us that he didn’t start until 7:00pm this evening. Bummer! As it turns out, we ended up with Jeff as a waiter, and he was just as accommodating as Nate was.

We basically ordered the same thing we had last year: 8 oz. Filet, baked potato with the works to share, and a side of asparagus for the wife. Before the meal, we were given a bread basket with some great bread, along with butter. And “with complements of the chef”, we were given a sampler of Philly Cheesesteak Eggrolls with Jalapeno Ketchup. Not a fan for ketchup, but these were really good!!! I don’t see them on the menu, so I am not sure if this is something he is trying out. We were never asked what we thought of them, so not sure what that was all about.

Anyway, on with the meal. Believe it or not, everything tasted better this time than the last time!!! I didn’t think it was possible! Usually when you visit a place for the first time and you are blown away by the food, it is somewhat disappointing on the next visit. Not this time!!! The steaks were perfectly cooked and seasoned again!!! Even the baked potato was the best I have ever tasted! My wife said the asparagus were incredible as well. Everything just melted in our mouths and was extremely delicious!!! A perfect meal for a perfect evening!

Next comes the dessert menu. We already knew we were getting the Campfire S’Mores again, but Jeff handed us the dessert menu and walked away before I could stop him. So what do I do? I start reading the menu. BIG MISTAKE!!! The first thing on the menu is the Campfire S’Mores, but the second thing on the menu is what had me starting to doubt. It was Milk Chocolate Cheesecake. But that wasn’t what got my attention. It was the scoop of Orange Dreamcicle Ice Cream that is served with it!!!! I was real tempted to get both desserts, or at least ask for a scoop of the ice cream on the side, but I knew that would be just too much, since I was already feeling pretty full. I finally decided against the ice cream and just ordered the Campfire S’Mores. (Besides that, I didn’t think the two tastes would go very well together anyway. How’s that for rationalization!)

The dessert arrives, and not only has the chef written “Happy Anniversary” in chocolate along the edge of the plate, there are 6 graham crackers instead of 5! (I can never figure out why some appetizers and desserts are served with an odd number of whatever when it is obvious it is going to be shared by 2 people!!!) We were only given 5 graham crackers last time. I know, big deal, right? Well, to us it was a nice touch. (Or maybe they just serve it with 6 now anyway!) Whatever the case, we were happy! We begin roasting our marshmallows and digging into the dessert to find that even this tastes better than it did last year!!! We finally finish up, and are very full and satisfied!!! Time to move along! Total bill with tip was $175. Money well spent, in my opinion!!!

Since we still had a little time before we had to head to the Luxor for Carrot Top, we decided to cash in our slotplay coupons and play some slots. My wife was able to get $50, since she is a new member here, and I got $40. We get our slot play loaded onto our cards, and go straight to the Epic Monopoly slots. Did I mention this may be my new favorite slot? The way we played out slot play was we would load on $5 at a time, and anytime we would hit anything significant, we would cash out and continue playing with whatever was left. My wife didn’t do too well with Monopoly, so she went in search of some of her favorites. In the end, after hopping around to various slots (and a little VP) for about 45 minutes, we cashed out with about $120, and I still had $15 left on my card. We decided we would come back later to finish that up, since it was time to leave.

Drive over to the Luxor and valet park again, and head straight to the theater just as they were about to open the doors. Got to our seats (Row A, Seats 9 & 10, Front Row Center!!), and watched the crazy videos they play before the show. There were a lot of new ones since we were last here, so that was cool. The replaced some of the animal humping videos for some projectile vomiting babies. Thank goodness I didn’t go ahead with that Orange Dreamcicle Ice Cream!! I might have lost it right there!!!!! (At least it would have matched Carrot Tops hair!)

The open act was Rob Sherwood, and he was definitely better than some of the opening acts we have seen in the past. (This was our 4th time seeing Carrot Top) Since I happened to be sitting directly in front of him, he asked me a lot of questions and included me in quite a bit of his act. It was rather fun!

Anyway, he finally finishes up, and it is time for Carrot Top!!!! And he did not disappoint! There was a lot of new material since we last saw his show, and we laughed almost the entire time!!! He spoofed Criss Angel quite a bit, which was hilarious!!! This is still by far my favorite show in Vegas!!!

After the show, I make my first mistake of the day. Instead of leaving the Luxor, I decide that my losing blackjack session the day before was just a fluke, so we head down to the casino. Find a $10 table with only one other player, and buy in for $60. Played for a while, but eventually bought in for another $20. Quickly lost that, and decided to try my luck at the next table where they seemed to be having a great time! There was only one spot open, so I jumped in and bought in for $40. I lasted for quite a while, but couldn’t seem to get a decent run going. It was a fun table, but in the end, my $40 was gone. Down another $120 total, I figured it was time to get out of Egypt and head to Paris where we should have been already!

Got our car back fairly quickly, and head over to Paris, where we valet the car. Head straight for the ticket sales for the Eiffel Tower ride, only to find that it will be about a 30 minute wait to get up to the top. It was already 11:30pm by this point, and the last fountain show was at 11:45pm, so we decided to just come back the next night and try again. I was kicking myself for playing more blackjack instead of just heading straight for the Eiffel Tower!!! Not wanting to leave Paris just yet, I found a single deck $10 blackjack table and tried to get my money back. My wife went in search of some slots, and found the Double Da Vinci Diamonds machine by the front desk, but not much luck for her. This would be the only Double Da Vinci Diamonds machine we found the whole trip!!! Anyway, I ended up playing at this table for almost an hour, and I finally cashed out up $100. Time to head back “home”.

We arrive back at the Rio, fully exhausted yet satisfied that it was an awesome Anniversary Day! Got back to the room, and I just couldn’t bring myself to play anymore tonight, so I stayed in the room and fell asleep with the woman of my dreams!

Olmsted Falls
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9. Re: TR – The Rhinoman Anniversary Report -- Aug. 4th-9th

I was wondering if you were going to post a trip report, enjoying it very much! What are WIN cards?

Dallas, Texas
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10. Re: TR – The Rhinoman Anniversary Report -- Aug. 4th-9th

did Carrot Top give you any shots?