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Garth Trip - Oct 1-5

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by Aero22, Oct 16, 2010.

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  1. Aero22

    Aero22 Low-Roller

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    My Trip Report

    So a few months ago, Garth tickets went on sale for Sept, Oct, and Nov., and, even though we had been in Vegas in Feb., decided to make the trip to celebrate my wife’s birthday (J) – 49ish. We have been to Vegas about 7 or 8 times, usually going in Sept , J having been twice more than me.

    Can’t say I remember the hour by hour details, but I will try to hit the highlights. Left from Toronto Friday evening . . .8:50 flight Westjet direct. We usually go in the morning in order to maximize time in Vegas, but flights were a lot cheaper at night by the time we booked, and decided it would work better for kids at home and work etc. We were booked at NYNY - - usually try to stay at a new place each time, and offer was right and we like that location down there.

    Cab lineup at the airport looked to be outlandishly long with hardly any cabs showing up, so we hightailed it over to the shuttle - - NYNY was first stop and price was 6:50 each. . . I’m starting to think shuttle beats cab from Airport when we don’t rent a car. Checkin at NYNY fast and off to the 19th floor. Room was close to the elevator with strip view. . . .Personally I don’t understand this whole view thing. . ..We looked out the window maybe twice and that was to see what the weather was like ! Anyway, off to Monte Carlo NYNY and Excalibur to check things out, grab a sub at Monte Carlo then back to bed. . .. time change, long day etc etc. We stayed at Monte Carlo about 8 years ago and loved it. I can still conjure the smell of the casino from that time. I don’t know why they have messed with the formula, but it sure isn’t like it used to be. Sickly sweet and not pleasant at all.

    Saturday morning up and heading north to Hash-House a Go-Go - -first time. Massive plates of pretty good food. . .. . . but with tax tip and coffee totaled 41$ - - for breakfast?? Oh well. Now that we were full, carried on up the strip. . .few cocktails here and there, and a bit of slot play found us at the Wynn., across the street to Fashion Show Mall - - -not open yet.. . .. so head back down south on the East side of the Strip. . .. . Slot play and cocktails down to Mandalay Bay - - - I love to walk, . . . . . . but I had every intention of getting a 3 day bus pass, but as time went on, my intentions turned into getting a 24 hour bus pass, and kept putting if off and off for some reason. We had $25 gift cert. for Gameworks which I bought from Restaurant.com for $2, so slid in there for a meal . . . pretty darn good. . .. J had Chicken & Pasta and I had something similar, along with some beer and fries. Etc. We were heading to see Barry Manilow tonight at Paris (American Express discount tickets) Barry was at 7:30 so we were trying to decide if we would be able to make Jay Leno at Mirage at 10 p.m. or should we stick with our plan of Shelley Berman at the Improv at 10:30. Not knowing how long BM was, and thinking it would be tight, we went with the Improv…..so up to Tix4Tonite at Bills to buy Improv tix half price, then up to Harrahs to redeem voucher for the tickets, then back to Paris for Barry Manilow at 7:30. Great seats about half way back dead centre. Neither of us are huge BM fans, and we went basically because we had heard his Vegas show was quite good. I had fears of falling asleep simply because BM is basically a ballad singer, but I will say that it was a very very good show. Exceeded all expectations and I would recommend it to anyone who was considering going. So, after BM we headed north once again to Harrahs to the Improv. Upon arriving we found out Shelley Berman had cancelled and was replaced with another comedian. He’s only about 100 years old, so I can’t blame him, and as it turned out, his replacement was very good. First time at the Improv, and it too was great. Opener, Johnathon Bell was very good, featured performer was Jackie Kashian, also excellent, and the headliner, whose name I don’t know, was great too. Out of the Improv around midnight, and walked back to NYNY to call it a night. Just to recap the walking: Left NYNY in the morning, up to Wynn, across to FSM, down to Mandalay, up to Bills, Up to Harrahs, down to Paris, up to Harrahs, down to NYNY. I might point out that in Feb I ended up with bad blisters from too much walking in bad shoes, which I dumped in Vegas and replaced with Walmart shoes picked up on the trip. ..I think I recall swearing that I would never do that again.. . .how soon we forget.

    Sunday morning. .. .breakfast at MacDonalds. I go in a MacDonalds about 4 times a year, and those are the four mornings I am in Vegas. That is one of our Vegas treats - - - - dollar menu breakfast from MacDonalds. Then, worked our way up to Wynn to get our Garth tickets, Wrist bands, ultra-violet handstamps, and whatever other security measures Steve & Garth have devised to thwart scalpers. After that, we decided to get the bus pass and head to the factory outlet mall. We went to the north one via the Gold Line. Plenty of good deals on Nike shoes, Van Heusen clothes etc etc. Bus back to drop off the loot at NYNY then up to Mirage to eat at BB Kings. (via 25$ gift cert purchased from Restaurant.com for $2 !!!). first time there and a pretty good meal. .. . service below average, food above average. Then off to Wynn for Garth.

    I’m 51 years old. I’ve seen a lot of concerts in my life. . . A lot. That’s what I do for entertainment. Garth Brooks alone at Wynn was likely the best concert I have seen in my life. I may have known 3 GB songs – I’m not particularly a fan. If you have the opportunity, go to see this show. There are lots of reviews and threads about the Show, . . I will not repeat the details here but will say that it was the concert of a lifetime.

    Monday morning, walked down to the sign to get some photos with some friends who were staying at the Luxor. Met up with them in Mandalay Bay then walked over to the sign. There was some girl there trying to be in charge and taking pictures in exchange for a tip. I don’t think she was in any official capacity, just someone trying to make a buck. Then walked back to Luxor with our friends, and made arrangements to meet later at Big Elvis. We got back on the bus, . .this time to the South end Outlet Malls. (Being Canadian, we just can’t pass up these deals). Couple of hours there, then bus back to NYNY, then up to Bills for Big Elvis. This was about our 7th time seeing Big Elvis. I have a T-Shirt that we had printed up a few years ago with a photo of Pete along with my wife and I. Each time we go to see him, I wear the shirt and get him to autograph it. One of the above-mentioned friends shared a birthday with my wife, so I had secretly arranged the previous Friday with Pete to have him call them up to perform as Elvettes during the show. My wife had been an Elvette a few times in the past, but it was the first time our other friends had seen Big Elvis, so it was a nice surprise. I think Big Elvis has now lost over 565 pounds. An amazing performer, and probably one of the nicest most genuine guys performing on the strip. A table of 99 cent Margaritas made the afternoon most pleasant also.

    We had purchased Zumanity via Summer of Cirque. We are not fans of CDS shows., although we did quite like Love, due to the Beatles music. Anyway, we thought that Zumanity might be interesting, so decided to give it a try. Zumanity was nothing spectacular, but I will say that it was interesting and I did not find my mind wandering. I could nit-pick about some of the ‘skits’ being a little amateurish etc, but overall it was enjoyable and we are glad we went, but I don’t think I could recommend it at full price. Given the ‘prudishness’ and ‘uptightness’ about matters sensual and sexual generally prevalent in the US, I was not expecting anything very extreme and Zumanity delivered exactly that. The Disneyland version of adult entertainment. I was a little surprised because I thought I had read somewhere that Zumanity featured a fair amount of same-sex interaction, but there was none other than the girls in the fishbowl, and I also thought that the little person in the cast was featured a little more prominently, but he was hardly noticeable in the show. . .I think he came down a rope once and that was the extent of his participation. Have they changed the show in the last few years???

    Check out Tuesday morning, cab to the airport, and safe flight home. Our cab driver was Tony someone from Boston who was on America's Got Talent a few years ago - - - How do I know that????? Because he had it on his Iphone and showed it to us while we went to the airport, along with entertaining us with some of his routine. We had a lively discussion about the construction of jokes and sets.....A great cab ride - -- Where-ever you are Tony, keep them laughing.

    Parting thoughts:

    Get a bus pass - - With the Gold Line/Deuce duopoly, the bus is a fantastic way to get up and down the strip and to downtown etc.

    Check out Restaurant.com We also had $25 cert for House of Blues which we bought for $2. . . . so we had $75 of food vouchers for $6. I ended up giving the House of Blues cert away to someone I met on the strip. A nice lady and her daughter in Vegas for the first time and looking for a nice place to eat. I figured I could afford the $2 and they would enjoy it.

    When we were in Vegas in Feb, we discovered Sex in the City machine and loved it. We played a bit this time, but it is expensive at $2 a pull . We played some of that big Screen fish machine at bills and did quite well, but overall did little gambling. . .. . For some reason, we often looked at each other and said - - - “We could go through $80 on these machines pretty quick just to get a free cocktail or we could just buy a cocktail” Other than some football bets, and a bit of machine here and there, we did not do a lot of betting………we were about breakeven or a bit ahead, and happy with that.

    Interesting that 2 years ago, you couldn’t turn around without seeing those Big Ebay machines, then in Feb, they were nowhere to be found, and those big fishing machines were everywhere - - Everywhere,. This time, the only big Fishing Machine I saw was at Bills.

    A lot of people complain about the ‘New Vegas’ . . . . . the party pits, the dancers on top of the machines, the loud dance music everywhere etc. . Personally I like it. . . .and so does J. . .. .. We like watching semi-strippers on top of the machines and listening to loud party music.

    I wish the CDS shows would just go away.

    I'll always fit in the Improv in the future.

    We were saying that we likely don’t need to go back to Vegas for a while since we have seen most of the shows that we have any interest in. BUT, if we get a chance to see the Garth show at Wynn again, we will be there.

    We collect Chips from each Casino. We only need about 4 more and our set is complete. We don't have Aria yet; Notwithstanding the fact that we went past City Centre more than a few times, and rode the tram through it, we had no thoughts of going in the casino, even to just get our chip. it just seems so hard to make the effort to get into Aria. . . . MGM seems to have purposely made it very very hard to get to from the Strip. As a current MGM shareholder, that concerns me a bit.


    Cheers
     
  2. IowaRyan

    IowaRyan Low-Roller

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    Nice report, just out of curiosity what was the demographic like for the Manilow show?
     
  3. Aero22

    Aero22 Low-Roller

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    I would guess the demographic would be about what you would expect for a 70's/80's performer - ---35 to 55??? Hard to say., but the show featured some cool set changes, pretty good band, nice and loud, good audience interaction etc. . . . .overall I'd give it a pretty good mark considering I am nowhere near a Fanilow and a little embarrased to even say I went.
     
  4. Nancyb54

    Nancyb54 Low-Roller

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    Nice report! I'm not a big Garth fan either, but from what I've read, he's got a great show so we'd like to go see it. When his tickets went on sale, how did you find out? It seems it's very hard to get tickets for his show. I signed up for notification on the Wynn site last spring already but never got anything. I did look several times and by the time I saw his October dates (of which we will be in Vegas), there were no tickets available anymore. :(
     
  5. VegasDiva

    VegasDiva VIP Whale

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    Great review

    lol @ admitting you went to Barry.....I saw him 5 yrs ago at the Hilton and loved it ....

    Love Big Elvis too

    I'd go see Garth if I got a chance , also .... doesn't show January dates as yet however
     
  6. bighead1970

    bighead1970 High-Roller

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    How did you get a $25 coupon for bb kings for $2? I see them listed for $10. Am I missing something? Thanks
     
  7. Aero22

    Aero22 Low-Roller

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    the $25 certs are usually $10, but there is always a code for discounts.....we had a 80% off code so ended up paying $2 each. until the end of the 17th (today) the code is 'sweet' and it is for 70% off so you can get the $25 cert for 3$. There is a little banner ad when you first go to vegasmessageboard.com and it shows the current code......OR I think someone posts the codes usually somewhere on this board. It is a very good deal, and they have no expiry date.

    While I am here, I had posted in my report that we had a table of 99 cent margaritas at Bills, but my wife just informed me that she thinks it is 99 cents daiquiris that you get at Bills. Can anyone settle this bet for us?

    Oh - - and Garth tickets. i happened to see on the news wires that they were going on sale on an upcoming Saturday simply because, at the time i was a Wynn shareholder and was following the wires. Now that the tickets are sold via ticketmaster, you can sign up at Ticketmaster to be notified of individual artists, venues etc etc so shoudl be easy to find out when the Jan - Feb- mar batch go on sale.
     
  8. breanna61

    breanna61 Super Moderator

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    I enjoyed your TR.......we always have 99 cent Margaritas (but they may have daquaris too, not sure) at Bills. I hope one of my upcoming trips will match up with a Garth concert; I'd love to see him.
     
  9. jgates8

    jgates8 VIP Whale

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    Approximately what do Garth Tickets run? I was thinking I had heard around $150 - is that somewhere close?
     
  10. evoni

    evoni High-Roller

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    Enjoyed your trip report. Garth is on my list of shows just because every single trip report that mentions him says the show is fantastic.

    I'm going to have to catch Barry's show one of these trips too but it will likely have to be with girlfriends as my husband as really dug his feet in about not going to see Manilow.

    We did see Zumanity on a trip a couple years ago and our opinion was the same as yours.
     
  11. weluvvegas

    weluvvegas Vegas Slot Junkie

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    Loved the TR! We'll have to try the Sex in the City machine....sounds fun!
     
    40th Birthday Bash!
  12. Blonde_4_ever

    Blonde_4_ever "The Welfare Queen of Windsor"

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    Ditto what Evoni said.
    Even people who don't love country music love Garth's show.

    Thanks for the report.
     
  13. bubbamsu

    bubbamsu Low-Roller

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    I WAS not a Garth Brooks fan before my wife and I saw his show last year, but I AM now. I too have seen tons of shows in my life, but his show was AWESOME!!!!!! Well worth every penny, it has been awhile so I am not exactly sure of the cost maybe $150/ticket. I would see him again in Vegas, because the usher said every show is different and no one knows what he will play, except for his 3-5 songs that everyone seems to know.

    Great trip report!!
     
  14. luckylarry

    luckylarry Tourist

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    saw Garth when he was in Winnipeg in the early 90's ...on tour with Alan Jackson...very good concert...would love to see him in a more intimate venue than a 40,000 seat arena...I agree with the Zumanity comments as well...tics were $30.00 and were worth that, but not much more...although sexy none the less...Bill's has a big sign out front "home of the 99 cent margarita" when we were there so I'm with you on the bet...we had several passing through...small plastic cups with a straw about 8 ounces or so...thanks for the trip report..we enjoyed it.
     
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