Monday, November 17, 2014

Getting Ready to Rock in Las Vegas!

Time to get that last Western state - the state of Nevada!

There's a huge Rock 'n Roll Marathon/Half Marathon held every year in Las Vegas NV. It's the largest of their races held nationwide.  I registered for the race as soon as they opened sign-up, taking advantage of a short discount window.  This is one of the most expensive races in the country, but registering early helped significantly with the cost.  Still pricey, though.  Then I booked a room at the Signature at MGM Grand Hotel and got a very good AARP rate, better than the special housing rate through Rock 'n Roll.  6 months later I booked airfare and got an excellent price on a first-class ticket.  I was ready; just needed to stay healthy and uninjured through the next several months and dozen or more half marathons.


Now it's mid-November and race time. My 1:00 CST PM flight went without a hitch and  I was at the Signature Hotel by 3:30 PM PST, checked into my hotel room and heading for the Monorail station for a short and easy ride north to the Las Vegas Convention Center and packet pickup.

Packet pick-up at the race expo

Las Vegas Convention Center 

I've only run one other Rock 'n Roll race and the expo for that race was big and glitzy.  Las Vegas expo was big and glitzy x 10!  It was huge but well-organized and not too crowded so I was able to take my time, not feel rushed or jostled as I shopped the official logo wear booth.  I spent more than just a few dollars but picked up three really nice tops, two of them RnR logo running tops - all Brooks Running brand - and an adorable long-sleeve non-logo top that I can wear anytime, not just for running.  Afterward I had dinner at the sushi restaurant at MGM Grand then headed for my room.

Next morning I took advantage of the Starbucks in the lobby and ventured back out onto the Strip to explore.  But before leaving the MGM Grand, I bought a ticket to see KA for the evening performance and then took the monorail to Harrah's to pick up my will-call ticket for The Million Dollar Quartet for Monday evening.

I exited Harrah's and headed for Bellagio but got totally turned around as I tried to navigate the cross-over bridges and found myself diagonally across from where I need to be.  Comfortable walking shoes are a must when negotiating this city!!  Finally, I made my way to Bellagio where I enjoyed The Conservatory with it's Fall-related displays and then had lunch at Cafe at Bellagio.

Beautiful displays at the Conservatory at Bellagio

Bellagio is a gorgeous hotel, but huge!  All of the hotels/casinos here are like rat mazes, difficult to find your way and lots and lots of walking!  Once again, I got totally turned around and ended up exiting through an adjacent hotel/casino and had no idea where I was relative to where I needed to be. I found myself on a side street and my smartphone GPS was unable to pinpoint my location, the little blue dot bouncing from point to point in the general vicinity but never landing anywhere specific.  So what's a girl - whose feet are tired - to do?  Grab a cab!  $5 and two blocks and I was back at The MGM Grand hotel.   What a day!

The Cirque Du Soleil KA performance was unique, not typical for Cirque du Soleil, but a very entertaining and enjoyable way to spend the evening.  Afterward I made my way to the Buffet restaurant and had a late dinner then called it a night.

Tomorrow:  Race day and a long few hours before it will be time to walk to the start line for a late afternoon sunset start to the Rock 'N Roll Marathon/Half Marathon.

1 comment:

  1. So much activity in one post.

    We've only been to Vegas once, but it was enlightening. So much walking. The smell of the deodorizers at the casinos is what got to us.

    Good luck with the race!! You'll ace it, as always.