The Players: Myself and my Lady, J & M, R & D, B (Jâ€™s dad) & K, Mel & L, and K2. The Flight: We booked flights in April, SWA, $265 each total. We have a stop in Sacramento on the way down, but the flight times were better. The Room: We usually stay Sun-Thur, but this time we are looking for a little more relaxing so now itâ€™s Sun-Fri. We started looking for hotels in April as summer promos were coming out. J & M like the big rooms at the Rio and it is less expensive than the Strip, so we decided on the Rio. Me and Lady usually get better offers than J &M, although they have more points on their cards. Go figure. Our website offers were a couple nights at HET places, discounts at MGMs, and discounts at P/V. So I called the Rio. Bingo! Five free nights. Lady called a couple days later and Bingo! Five free nights. So we are giving her room to J & M. R & D and B & K got $45 a night. They are only staying until Wednesday. Just for kicks, I called Palazzo, my favorite hotel. Bingo! Five free nights. So Lady called her best friend and offered the Palazzo room to Mel and her fiancÃ© L. Mel was diagnosed with cancer in October, it got worse, and we wanted to help her live with it. You know, anything we can do to help to make her world a little better. Then she invited another friend, K2. We may not see Mel, L, and K2 much during the trip but will catch up for dinner once or twice. The Plan: I jumped on the Summer of Cirque special and grabbed LOVE tickets. At the time, there were only six of us going, but at that price I got the maximum eight. I figured even if no one else went, I could sell them for $110 no problem. Then B & K booked so weâ€™re all good for a show. Weâ€™ll probably find another discounted show while weâ€™re down there. Iâ€™d like to check out Gordie Brown. We are also considering Tony nâ€™ Tinaâ€™s Wedding, considering we have a group of us. I also picked up two $25 McFaddenâ€™s coupons from Restaurant.com for three bucks and one $50 for BB Kingâ€™s Blues Club for six. Iâ€™m excited for BB Kingâ€™s. I saw it when I was in Nashville a couple months ago but the fellas overruled me for Joeâ€™s Crab Shack (still a win). We are also considering the Bellagio Buffet. The only high priced buffet I have been to is the Seafood Market and am looking forward to trying Bellagio or Wynn. I figure one or two nice dining restaurants, but mostly just some good grub like Gold Coast, Canterâ€™s Deli, and Gran Lux. Top-notch meals can really take dollars out of my gambling stash so I have to be disciplined not to blow it on food so I can blow it at the tables. The Score: Iâ€™m not a high roller. I am continually amazed at the offers I get based on my relatively low play. My win/loss at HET was about -$69 for 2009/10 and -$600 for 2008. For P/V it is -55 for 2010 and +222 for 2008. I usually slow play for the first few days so I can really play on the last night and day. I donâ€™t really go to Vegas to gamble, I can do that at the tribe casinos out here. I like the fact that I can get a resort in the sun for under a hundred a night. So Iâ€™ll take the rooms, thank you very much. I usually play nickel blackjack and craps, and penny slots. Iâ€™m looking forward to a good fire bet. Iâ€™m also planning to play craps at Casino Royale with $2 pass and $15 odds instead of the usual $5+10. I figure just a couple bucks more would pay out much better in a good roll. J and I found we like the fifty-play poker machines for the slow burn and, with a good waitress, the ridiculous head rush when we stand up after an hour or so. Speaking ofâ€¦ The Spirits: J and I are Crown & Coke guys. The caffeine and sugar help us with the marathon nights down there. My Lady and M are into vodka tonics lately and have made D, who is not a big drinker, promise that she will keep up with them. R is a vodka guy. I donâ€™t know about the others. I am going to ask every casino if the hotel has a signature drink. It could be a lot of fun, it could be disaster mixing alcohols. Speaking ofâ€¦ The Duke: The back-story is from an episode of Dharma And Greg. Dharma and her friend had a statue of a duck for whoever did it in the most exciting place. The punch line at the end was when Greg asked â€œWhy a duck? Why not a plaque or a trophy?â€. The answer was â€œBecause â€˜trophyâ€™ doesnâ€™t rhyme!â€. So we have a pin of John Wayne for whoever canâ€™t hold their liquor. Hence, The Duke. Two of us have acquired The Duke in Vegas. I got him after a fun run at the Casino Royale craps table. I was That Guy staggering down the Strip at night. Youâ€™ve all seen it. You give your friend an elbow, point, and say â€œHey look at that guyâ€. Yeah, that was me. From the Flamingo to Palazzo, I was That Guy. And after Lady and J & M got to the room, I got The Duke. But it was a great night and totally worth it. Lady got it the year before at Caesars right before getting on the shuttle to Rio. The driver was not happy. But it was a great night and totally worth it. The Updates: Iâ€™ve never done a live trip report before. Weâ€™ll have the laptop, but frankly I donâ€™t know if Iâ€™ll have the desire to stop and pop in the wins and losses of the day. No promises, but Iâ€™ll try. Wish me luck!