It was a busy weekend here in Las Vegas. The marathon ran on Sunday, and I didn’t realize that this year they ran it at night – the start time was 5pm. Starting at Mandalay Bay on the south end of the Strip, runners proceeded up Las Vegas Boulevard north to downtown, running on Freemont Street and back. The half marathon returned to Mandalay while the full marathon turned west and wandered around a bit to get to the full 26 mile mark. This was put on as a Rock N’ Roll Marathon, with live bands playing every mile or so. It must have been a nice run, between the casinos and all the lights to the Freemont canopy with music along the way. It was cold though, at the start the temperatures were in the low 50’s (around 12c) and cooled off from there. But moving the run to the evening hours did spark attendance – over 44,000 runners, the third largest marathon in the US.
The timing required that Las Vegas Boulevard be closed for most of the day, which caused a lot of problems with our other big event: the National Finals Rodeo. The Rodeo itself is taking place at the University center, which is a few miles east of the Strip down Tropicana. When it let out at 3 there were thousands of people that had to get back to their hotel rooms, which was a challenging task with the Strip closed and traffic not being able to cross except at limited points. But the rodeo went well. We walked the south end of the Strip on Saturday night, and cowboy hats and very short skirts were much in evidence. The hats come and go, but the skirts are around most nights, no matter how cold it is. We also walked through the Monte Carlo and New York New York casinos and noticed the new trend in the big places of putting scantily clad dancers up on a bar right on the casino floor. (one in Monte Carlo did have on a cowboy hat, which probably covered more skin than the rest of her outfit). I was distracted walking past, I wonder how the players like it. It must work at attracting and keeping gamblers putting out their money or the casinos wouldn’t do it.
In keeping with the Strip theme, here are a few shots taken at the Crystals shopping center at City Center: first, I liked the birds on this store’s windows
From the upper level the center shows it’s interesting interior shapes
Down at the bottom is this sculpture, where the plastic sculptures keep changing colors