Las Vegas

Snaps from the Neon Museum in Las Vegas

Sharing some snaps today from a recent visit to the Neon Museum in Las Vegas, which collects, preserves and exhibits iconic signs that were part of the city’s history.

If you’re planning a trip to Las Vegas or must go there for a meeting or convention, this is a great stop.

Of course, it’s best to go at night when you can get a tour, see many of the signs lit up and enjoy Brilliant!,  artist Craig Winslow’s neon installation that takes you back into the history of Sin City through sight and sound.


Las Vegas Neon Museum


Fresh art for the Las Vegas Airport

Between the slot machines, the flashy advertising signs and just the plain excitement of being in Las Vegas, there’s plenty to distract you when you arrive at McCarran International Airport.

But be sure to look down at the new mosaic artwork in the Terrazzo flooring in Terminal 1’s Baggage Claim.

Created by Nevadan Randy Heil, the artwork is laid-out as a 40-foot-diameter circle with a border reminiscent of a poker chip and contains images inspired by iconic landmarks in the Las Vegas skyline – past and present.

A mosaic mural depicting past and present Las Vegas landmarks is unveiled in the Teminal 1 Baggage Claim at McCarran International Airport on Thursday, Sept. 8, 2016. CREDIT: Mark Damon/Las Vegas News Bureau

A mosaic mural depicting past and present Las Vegas landmarks is unveiled in the Teminal 1 Baggage Claim at McCarran International Airport on Thursday, Sept. 8, 2016. CREDIT: Mark Damon/Las Vegas News Bureau

On one side of the ‘chip,’ look for The Dunes, Landmark, Plaza and Desert Inn hotels, and references to Evel Knievel, jumping the fountains at Caesars Palace, and a mushroom cloud representative of atomic testing that took near town.

A mosaic mural depicting past and present Las Vegas landmarks is unveiled in the Teminal 1 Baggage Claim at McCarran International Airport on Thursday, Sept. 8, 2016. CREDIT: Mark Damon/Las Vegas News Bureau

A mosaic mural depicting past and present Las Vegas landmarks is unveiled in the Teminal 1 Baggage Claim at McCarran International Airport on Thursday, Sept. 8, 2016. CREDIT: Mark Damon/Las Vegas News Bureau

Heil, who was paralyzed from his shoulders down in an auto accident, now creates his artwork using his mouth.

The modern skyline half of the poker chip art has references to structures and images you’ll see on the The Strip, including the Luxor Las Vegas pyramid, the Paris Las Vegas Eiffel Tower, the volcano at The Mirage, the Stratosphere Tower, the Wynn Las Vegas, the High Roller observation wheel and the Las Vegas Monorail.

The artwork is part of a $30 million renovation of Terminal 1.

The Beatles at McCarran Int’l Airport in Las Vegas

Beatles fans are celebrating the 50th anniversary of the U.S. concert tour the Fab Four kicked off in San Francisco on August 19, 1964.

Beatles in Las Vegas

The Beatles arrived in Las Vegas early on the morning of August 20, 1964 and performed two 30-minute concerts at the Las Vegas Convention Center later that evening.

To mark the 50th anniversary of that day, on Thursday cast members from the The Beatles LOVE by Cirque du Soleil gave a special live performance at McCarran International Airport.

Leave it in Las Vegas: airport clinic helps with hangovers

Las Vegas purse

Worried about flying home with a hangover after a weekend of partying in Las Vegas? A new airport clinic at McCarran International Airport might have an answer.

Here’s a story I wrote about the clinic – and alcohol sales to passengers – for CNBC Road Warrior:

The first U.S.airport to open a let’s-get-the-party-started liquor store in the baggage claim area now has an on-site clinic that can help travelers recover from too much drinking.

The new McCarran Medical Clinic and Pharmacy at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas is staffed daily by a doctor and a physician’s assistant and has a full-service  pharmacy and a drugstore stocked with travel-sized health and convenience items.

“We’re an urgent care center in the airport,” David Inman, the clinic’s owner and co-manager told CNBC. “If you’re feeling bad, we can make you feel better.”

Located pre-security in Terminal 1, the clinic’s target market includes the airport’s 15,000 employees and the 42 million national and international travelers who pass through McCarran—the country’s ninth busiest airport—each year.

Some travelers arrive at the airport feeling under the weather after a long flight, said Inman. Others may need a flu shot, a travel immunization or a replacement for a prescription left at home. And, since this IS Las Vegas, there may likely be a fair number of travelers feeling a little woozy as they head home following a night of partying.

“We have a remedy to help people with hangovers,” said McCarran Medical Clinic co-manager Stan Wasserkrug. “We can give you oxygen and an IV that includes some Vitamin B product, along with anti-nausea medication.”

For those who have been indulging in excessive drinking, “there’s only so much we can do,” said Wasserkrug, “We’re urgent care, not a miracle cure. But we can help.”

There are health centers at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport and in terminals at the San Francisco and Nashville airports, but the McCarran airport clinic claims to be the only one offering medical, pharmacy and over-the-counter services inside an airport.

And while an IV filled with hangover relief isn’t the main treatment offered by McCarran’s clinic, it may turn out to be one of the more popular procedures. Beyond the heavy drinking that accompanies many “What happens here, stays here” Vegas visits, a recent study found that more alcohol is sold to passengers flying into to Sin City than to any other city in the continental U.S.

Toronto-based GuestLogix, which supplies airlines with technology for in-flight payment systems, looked at in-flight sales figures for beverage, food and comfort items (such as pillows and in-flight entertainment) on five major U.S. airlines from November 2013 through February 2014.

During that time, beverage sales (liquor, beer and wine) made up about 58 percent, or about $43.6 million, of all in-flight sales, with flights to Las Vegas bringing in close to $2.7 million, or about $93 per flight. Elsewhere in the continental U.S., the average for on-board sales of alcoholic beverages was $58 per flight during the period studied, according to Ilia Kostov, executive vice president, Global Sales & Product Strategy for GuestLogix.

Long-haul flights to destinations such as Hawaii and the resort areas of Mexico and the Caribbean have higher sales per flight, in part because the planes are larger and the flights longer, said Kostov. “But a lot of people go to Las Vegas for leisure and there’s a lot of consumption on those flights.”

GuestLogix reviews in-flight sales numbers every six months and found that, year over year, the sale of alcoholic beverages has gone up 5 percent, Kostov said.

That may be good for the airlines’ bottom lines, but worrisome for those concerned about the increased number of flight disruptions caused by unruly passengers.

In 2012, members of the International Air Transport Association, the trade group for most of the world’s airlines, voluntary reported more than 5,200 incidents of unruly behavior by passengers. In 2013 that number exceeded 8,000.

“Intoxication, often resulting from alcohol already consumed before boarding, ranks high among factors linked to these incidents,” IATA said in a statement issued this week at the organization’s annual general meeting in Doha, Qatar, where the group unanimously passed a resolution calling on governments and industry to work together to “effectively deter and manage the significant problem of unruly air passenger behavior.”

More stuff spotted at the Travel Goods Show in Las Vegas


I spent two full days this week walking up and down the aisles of the giant Travel Goods Show in Las Vegas.

A few of the fun items soon to be in stores and gift shops – including 3-D rolling bags featuring SpongeBob Squarepants and friends – were posted yesterday here on

Here are a few more:

Among the many new designs from Heys USA is this set of pieces called Divas


And this one called Travel :


The folks at Visionair have several pieces of luggage featuring Felix the Cat:


And these retro tags from Retro Tags are so… retro:

Retro Tags

And, because no trip to Las Vegas is successful without an Elvis sighting, here’s “Zebra Elvis” – spotted while I was in the van on the way to the airport.