This would be the fourth trip I have taken with my dad to Vegas with three of them via car. We left San Antonio on the 10/9 in the afternoon stopping in Ft. Stockton for the night. We wanted to get to Albuquerque early so we could attend the annual Balloon Festival. I was pretty impressed at the event and next year we might add another day to see the mass ascent. We did stop at the Sandia casino for an early dinner before going to the event. I did win $400 playing nickle Build a Wheel Poker when I was dealt 4 aces on three play DDB picking up the kicker on the middle hand and winning 4000 nickles on the spin. That was the end of my play there. We arrived into Vegas around 2:30 stopping at Sam's Town so my dad could get his favorite ice cream cone and I hoped to catch the end on the Charlotte Race. I noticed the silver strike machine had a bunch of red and blue caps in it so I ran $100 bucks through winning 8 strikes but non of the coveted ones. My dad sat down at a Quik Hits machine to the right of me and quickly hit 8 quik hits for a smooth $750 win on a 75 cent bet. I ended up winning the hundred I spent chasing strikes on a Sphinx 3d machine when I hit the bonus and upon picking the scarab bonus winning $220 bucks. We headed to get checked in at Planet Hollywood getting a room on the 22nd floor of the south tower. The room was nice but I don't remember the theme. First stop after hitting the casino floor was Build a Wheel poker. After building the first wheel I was rewarded with the top prize of a little over 13000 nickles. After bouncing around the VP machines my dad found me and said he was starving so we headed into the mall deciding on Panda Express. The is where the trip almost took a turn for the worse. While waiting to order my dad couldn't find his wallet. He thought he might have left it at the Total Rewards desk so we rushed over there. They did not have it but called security and it had been turned into Lost and Found. We retrieved it from lost and found intact. I said a thank you to whoever found it and turned it in. The rest of the night was spent at Pho with no big wins. Monday morning I was woke up with a call to my cell from my dad asking if I was going to sleep all day. It was only 7 but he was already downstairs and ready for breakfast. After getting ready I met him downstairs and he wanted to have breakfast at a mexican place that had a 4.99 breakfast special. It was pretty good and even the 99 cent bloody mary was OK but a little small. The plan was to play at PHO until noon and then head downtown. Next year I think we will spend at least one night downtown. We checked out the Plaza which I didn't notice and over powering smells. I then headed to the QQQQ's to try and win the Shelby to add to my stable. No luck but wondering around the casino I spotted the silver strike machines and ended up winning 14 strikes on 100 bucks. While playing I stuck up a conversation with a lady who mentioned that the El Cortez was the only other casino downtown that had strikes. I headed down to the Cortez and was surprised by what the casino was like. I had never been there and in my mind pictured it very different from what I had read. I found the strike machine and won 6 strikes on 80 bucks. My dad called saying he was hungry so I walked down to the Fremont to meet him. We thought about going to MSS but remembered that Magnola's had a prime rib special. Since the special was with players card we went to get a card and since my birthday was 4 days earlier I received a BOGO for Magnola's as well as a deck of cards and an ace for BJ. The prime rib was wonderful and after eating my dad was ready to head back to the strip. Tuesday we planned on having lunch at the Aria buffet. My dad mentioned in the planning stage of our trip that he wanted to go to one of the better buffets and mentioned the Rio buffet. I talked him into either the Aria or Bellagio. The buffet was very good. After lunch we played at Aria and I lost lost lost. I couldn't win anything. I ended up dropping 500 bucks in no time. I found my dad and he wanted to go back out to Sam's Town for another ice cream. No big wins at Sam's so we headed back to PHO. They were having a promotion that if you earned 50 points in one day you would earn a free buffet at Spice Market. I had found this out by accident when at the Total Rewards desk I noticed they had put in some promotion kiosks and swiped my card the day before and it awarded me a free buffet. The dinner buffet was pretty good the highlight being the platter of warm crab legs they brought to the table. After dinner I swiped my card and earned another buffet so the plan was to have breakfast at the buffet before leaving for the trip back home. My plan that night was to grind out some points playing 100 play Bonus poker. The only problem was that all the 50 and 100 play machines were occupied. I sat at the same Build a Wheel that gave me the top prize our first day and went on a tear. I never got the top prize on the spin but was building the wheels quickly with dealt full houses and four of a kinds. The highlight was being again being dealt 4 aces this time on 5 play DDB and hitting the kicker on two of the hands. On the hundred dollar buyin I ended cashing out a little under 900 bucks. All my losses from earlier erased. I finished up playing 100 play BPD getting my points and cashing out double. Wednesday was the day we head back to Texas. The last two trips we ended up driving straight through not stopping for the night. This trip I promised my dad we would stop for the night and split the drive back into two days. Breakfast at the buffet hit the spot. Unfortunately my dad went down early that morning to get 50 points for the free buffet not knowing that the day at CET doesn't end until 6:59am. Back up to the room around 8 we called the Bell desk to for luggage pickup but after 30 minutes waiting my dad said screw it and we hauled our stuff to the valet. The drive back was smooth stopping in Deming New Mexico for the night. My dad wanted to eat at a place called the Adobe Deli but we could not find it. We ended up at a Wendy's where my dad informed me that it was a steakhouse and not a sandwich shop. I ended up accruing almost 6000 tier credit which left me about 1100 short of diamond so I guess a trip to Bossier City is in my future. The morning we left we stopped at the weirdest gas station. It was a AM/PM that had no way to pay at the pump. You had to guess how much gas you needed and come back in for a refund if you guessed wrong. We ended up using 98 gallons of gas for the whole trip paying anywhere from 1.99 to 3.05 a gallon. Not bad for a Mitsubishi Outlander ES. Final win of the trip was we have been have some wicked weather here and the day after returning my dad parked his car in the garage and noticed a spot of oil on the floor. He took it to the dealer and it seemed when he had the oil changed before our trip they didn't get the drain plug completely tight. It was only about a half quart low so they apologized and changed his oil for free. I didn't take very many pictures this trip except at the balloon festival but did find a picture of a slot win on a Herd of Wins slot of 100 bucks on a 90 cent bet that I don't remember. It was another great trip with my dad that I hope to continue for many years. Thanks for reading. Mark Follow up Last weekend we took a Sunday/Monday trip to the Horseshoe with my wife and my mom. I ended up getting the needed tier credits to make diamond for the first time. The highlight of the trip besides getting to spend some quality time with my wife and parents was I won $1600 on a Double Diamond using free play.