Tuesday Evening Las Vegas Links: Feb. 20 Edition

We get a lot of information from the Las Vegas Review Journal, but I think it’s time for someone over there to start listening to Five Hundy by Midnight. Today’s paper includes news of GM closing The Drive—the test track behind Sahara where people too dumb to go to a GM dealership to test drive a car for free could pay for the opportunity. GM closed The Drive three months ago, and we reported on it in show #96.

Speaking of closings, let’s hope the Las Vegas Sun’s speculation about MTR Gaming shuttering Binion’s proves false. Someone needs to step in to save the legendary old joint.

If Wayne Newton’s horrible pre-game lipsyncing, post-game shootings and gridlocked Las Vegas Strip traffic aren’t enough to make you glad you didn’t attend the NBA All-Star Game last weekend, surely reports of the mess at McCarran International Airport will make you thankful you stayed home. If you feel like you missed something, read Sports Guy’s extensive wrap-up.


10 thoughts on “Tuesday Evening Las Vegas Links: Feb. 20 Edition

  1. Great links, Tim! I hadn’t had much of a chance to read up on the events and aftermath surrounding the All-Star Game, including the shootings and, evidently, the general aura of unpleasantness surrounding the game, so these are definitely timely links.

    Let me preface my upcoming question by saying that it’s half rhetorical, but half serious. At what point did sports articles about major sporting events become less about the event itself and more about the author’s invitations to exclusive parties, restaurants, hotels, and so on? Maybe it’s just me, but it seems like many sports writers (not just Bill Simmons) as of late have started using their columns as a platform for casually bragging about their special privelages and entitlements while covering a major event. Trekking back to Wynn to change…a reserved table at Pure…a reception at Bellagio. Allright, Bill, we get the idea that your privelages exceeded those of the average fan in town for the game. Mind you, I absoluetely love reading through Las Vegas trip reports and reading or hearing about others’ thoughts about Las Vegas (especially through FHBM!), but for some reason, these types of sports articles seem to rub me the wrong way.

    On the other hand, I really enjoyed reading VegasRex’s obervations from All-Star weekend. It’s interesting to read about the event from the perspective of a local, and I think VegasRex did a great job of setting the scene in his blog. I would highly recommend reading through his “More 2007 NBA All-Star Weekend…” blog entry from February 18th for a great account of some of the cultured, refined individuals who were in town for the game…very funny stuff!

  2. I haven’t seen it (anyone got a link?) but could Wayne Newton lipsyncing be any worse than if he’d actually tried to sing live on TV? Saw his holiday show in December. I’m not a Wayniac, it’s just a Vegas thing I felt I had to do one time, and time is running out… his voice is pretty much shot.

    Binions can’t go anywhere! It’s probably the casino where I spend the most time, thanks to a combination of good poker tournaments, positive payback video poker and fantastic pastrami sandwiches. The cardroom pays out in chips so there’s no W2 form when you win, and the video poker machines pay out in coins, just as God intended. The Binion Dollar Babes and their Shania Twain CD are an added bonus now, of course.

    I was in town when it was shut last time and it was so sad seeing the doors locked, lights off and all the machines emptied, with their lids flipped up.

    The Speedway on the other hand probably won’t be missed. Although, it is the only casino I know of with a truck wash…

  3. Tim,

    Stop with the ragging on ‘The Drive’! I don’t think anyone can roll up to a Chevy dealer and take a new ‘vette on a closed track and give it some beans. Nor would they let you take an H2 offroad! I thought it was a great deal for $10 and sad to see it go.

  4. Forgive me, but how can I not rip on something referred to by the operators as “autotainment”?

  5. I heard that “The Drive” will be replaced with something called “The Flight” sponsored by JetBlue Airlines. For $300 you get on board an airplane that doesn’t go anywhere for 8 hours and then you get off with a complimentary bag of peanuts. Gotta love those marketing folks. They’re geniuses. I guess that would be called “Planetainment?”

  6. “Although, it is the only casino I know of with a truck wash…”

    Don’t forget about Wild Wild West which has a truck plaza and, according to their website, offers diesel and unleaded fuel, truck wash, weigh station, convenience store, AND (here’s the best part) trucker showers!

    Funny thing is that even the lowly Wild Wild West had the sense to keep the word “hotel” in their full name, “Wild Wild West Gambling Hall & Hotel”, which is more than can be said for other properties (which shall remain nameless) that have decided to go the “Gambling Hall & Saloon” route.

  7. I was at Binion’s a few weeks ago, they have really done a nice job making the casino much nicer. Especially the area near the poker room w/new carpet, hardwood floors, etc… I’ve noticed that Binion’s is really a kind of place that (to me) looks like it gets pretty good action on the weekdays, but whenever I go there on a weekend, it really is popping.

  8. Put me down as a fan of “The Drive”.

    I drove a Pontiac Solstice, Chevy Corvette, and Hummer H2 and H3 for $16 (I had a coupon). That’s comparable to the price of some of the roller coasters on the strip, isn’t it?

    Autotainment… would “Headlights and Tailpipes” fit in that category as well?

  9. Yay for the chat room! Yay for drunk dialing and drunk chatting! Yay for bacon! Yay for Five Hundy By Midnight! Seriously, thanks for a fun Saturday night chat.

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