The Jeff Does Vegas Podcast

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EP#43: KABOOM! The National Atomic Testing Museum

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It's a little-known fact that just over 60 miles away from the glitz & glamour of the Las Vegas Strip, the US government used to test Atomic Weapons!

Just as the Cold War was starting to heat up, the US Department of Energy began the testing of Nuclear Bombs in the Nevada desert.  The blasts would light up the early morning sky and the mushroom clouds could be seen from miles away on the rooftops of the downtown hotels.

Helping to keep this history alive is one of my favourite attractions, The National Atomic Testing Museum.

My guest on this episode is Michael Hall, the museum's Executive Director.  Michael and I discussed the United States' Atomic Testing program, the effects it had on Las Vegas as well as the incredible exhibits on display at the museum.

For tickets and information on The National Atomic Testing Museum visit their website & be sure to check them out on Twitter and Instagram.

Also in this episode, Vegas News You Can Use:

- Two big restaurants shut down in Mandalay Bay & The Mirage

- What might be missing from the new Virgin Hotel Las Vegas?

- And Gordon Ramsay gets set to open ANOTHER restaurant on The Strip

And don't forget: I want your feedback...be sure to fill out the Audience Survey!

EP#41: Viva Scare Vegas - Las Vegas Ghost Tours

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I have a very simple question for you:  Do you believe in ghosts?

If your answer is "Yes", then you're going to love this episode.  Honestly, even if your answer is "No" you're STILL going to love this episode!

With Las Vegas's shady past, it should come as no surprise that Sin City is blessed with its own share of spookiness.  A quick Google search reveals multiple spots both on and off the famous strip that are believed to be haunted by the famous, the infamous and the not-so-famous.

Just in time for Halloween, I'm joined by Josef Kruger of Las Vegas Ghost Tours who's here to share some of the creepiest tales of Las Vegas spooks & spectres.

For example...Which hotel was ravaged by a fire that killed 85 of its guests, some of whom haven't quite "checked out"?  What resort is haunted by its infamous mobster former owner?  And where can you go in Las Vegas to hang out with the ghost of a murdered rap superstar?

For the answers to these - and other - terrifying questions start listening now!

And for tickets to join Las Vegas Ghost Tours, visit their website or start following them on Facebook.

Also in this episode, Vegas News You Can Use:

- Legendary prop-comic Carrot Top signs a contract extension

- Two big shows on the Strip hit major milestones

- And The Mob Museum celebrates a piece of Vegas history with free admissions.

Also, don't forget to take part in the Audience Survey where you can share your feedback on the podcast!

 

 

EP#40: Bright Lights, Big City - The Neon Museum Las Vegas

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One of the things Las Vegas is perhaps most famous for are the bright neon lights of the World Famous Vegas Strip.  But as resorts close down or signs are replaced with massive HD LED video screens, what happens to those iconic neon signs?

Amanda Riley of the Neon Museum Las Vegas joins me on this episode to answer that question!

We talked about museum's mission to preserve Las Vegas' history, some of the unique & interesting signs in the museum's collection, their plans for future expansion and a very special exhibit/collaboration involving a major Hollywood director.

For tickets and information on the Neon Museum Las Vegas you can visit their website.  Also, be sure to follow the Neon Museum on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Also in this episode, Vegas News You Can Use:

- Huge news involving the sale of TWO major Las Vegas Strip resorts

- High-speed rail between Vegas & LA is one step closer to reality

- And there's a delay on a major project to help people get around Las Vegas more safely

And don't forget to take part in the Audience Survey to share your thoughts & opinions on the podcast! 

EP#38: Going To The Chapel

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There's no question that Las Vegas is the wedding capital of the world.  Every day, an average of 330 couples tie the not - which equals out to approximately 120,000 weddings every year!

But why?  How is it that a city known as "Sin City" is also the most popular place on the planet to get hitched?

To answer that question - and many more - I'm joined by a Las Vegas legend:  Charolette Richards, the owner of A Little White Wedding Chapel.

There are literally dozens of wedding chapels up and down the Vegas strip but A Little White Wedding Chapel is easily one of the most famous and recognizable.  In the almost-60 years that Charolette has been running the place, hundreds of thousands of couples have pledged their love for each other with Charolette herself personally officiating tens of thousands of weddings.

Charolette shared the story of how she ended up in Las Vegas & how she ended up working in the Las Vegas wedding world as well as her tips & tricks to a long and happy marriage.

If you want to plan your own Las Vegas wedding & you've got questions, check out this handy link full of info from the folks at Vegas.com - and when you're ready to tie the knot, get ahold of Charolette and the folks at A Little White Wedding Chapel.

Also in this episode, Vegas News You Can Use:

- Taxi cabs are going to start using a flat rate structure for trips between the airport & the strip

- Magic Mike Live is officially making the move up the strip to the all-new Sahara Las Vegas

- And another shot has been fired in the battle against Resort Fees

Also, don't forget to hit the Audience Survey link and tell me what you think of the podcast!

 

EP#29: Kids In Las Vegas 2 - The Sequel

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My guest for this episode of the show is my very good friend & fellow frequent Vegas visitor, Adam West.  Adam is the Midday Host & Program Director for Hot 100.5 FM in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.  Adam & I have been friends for over 20 years now; we worked together - and against each other - in the world of radio, we were temporary roommates at one time and we've even travelled to Las Vegas together.

Adam also has the distinct honour of being the first "repeat guest" on the podcast; he was one of the people I talked to back on Episode #8 of the show where we discussed the topic of bringing kids to Vegas.

Since appearing on the podcast, Adam and his wife took their kids to Las Vegas and I asked him to share the experience with me.  We talked about the decision to do Las Vegas as a family vacation, the planning process involved in organizing the trip and he shared some great tips & tricks for attractions, accommodations and budget-friendly meals. 

Also in this episode, Vegas News You Can Use:

- Treasure Island is joining the Radisson Family of hotels

- Legendary rockers Journey have extended their stay in Vegas

- Ruth's Chris Steakhouse in Harrah's is closed for upgrades

EP#26: The Truth Is Out There - Las Vegas & Area 51

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Area 51...

We've all heard the stories and seen it depicted in movies & television.  If pop culture & rumours are to be believed, it's a top secret installation in the Nevada desert where the United States military conducts classified activities - including research on alien spacecraft & technology as well as extraterrestrial beings.

What's the Las Vegas connection to Area 51?  It's two-fold:

First, it's well known that many Las Vegas residents work at Area 51, making the commute via Janet Airlines (they're the non-descript white planes with a red stripe that you've probably seen taking off & landing at McCarran International Airport).

Secondly, due to Area 51's proximity to Las Vegas (it's only a 2-3 hour drive away), thousands of people each year make the drive out to see the gates and maybe get a glimpse of something...bizarre.

Friend of the show & fellow Vegas Podcaster, Chris Kim, the host of Faces and Aces Las Vegas had the opportunity to talk to Braden & Dan who are the hosts of the Alien Theorists Theorizing Podcast about their journey to Area 51...as well as some of the "weirdness" they experienced on their trek to the gates.

Chris was gracious enough to allow me to share the interview on my podcast...enjoy!

Be sure to follow Alien Theorists Theorizing on Twitter & Instagram and take a listen to their show.

For even more Vegas-related content, follow Faces And Aces Las Vegas on Twitter & Instagram and be sure to listen to the podcast.

If you want to plan your own trek out to the fabled Area 51, check out this great article that outlines the best way to get to & from the back gate...and what to see along the way.

Also, in this episode's Vegas News You Can Use:

- A long-time Vegas hotspot has shut down

- If you're in the mood for a cupcake, you'll have to go hunting somewhere other than the Linq Promenade

- And more potential changes to the Las Vegas Strip as a piece of prime real estate gets sold

EP#22: Mob Rules

It's no secret that Las Vegas has a somewhat shady past...and that can pretty much 100% be attributed to the Mob's history in Las Vegas.

There are a lot of myths & legends surrounding Vegas' association with the world of organized crime and I wanted to get to the bottom of it all, so I turned to the experts.

The Mob Museum is one of my favorite Las Vegas attractions.  It's the definitive authority on Mob history, not just in Las Vegas but all across the US & around the world.  The Mob Museum is always on my to-do list when I'm in town and it's always one of my top recommendations for people travelling to Las Vegas.

My guest on this episode of the podcast is Geoff Schumacher, the Senior Director of Content for The Mob Museum.  We talked about Las Vegas' humble history as a stop on the railway line, the growth of gambling & the connection to organized crime and Geoff helped to separate fact from fiction when it comes to some of those legendary stories of the mob's involvement in the building of Las Vegas.

Keep up with the Mob Museum by following them on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram.  Get your tickets to visit the Mob Museum here.

Vegas News You Can Use:

- An update about the Pinball Hall Fame & their application to build a new facility

- "Dynamic Pricing" is coming to MGM Resorts in Las Vegas

- And The Cosmopolitan has announced this summer's line-up for Dive Inn Movies

 

EP#12: Vegas’ Most Overrated & Underrated

Las Vegas is the official city of HYPE!  Everything in Sin City is EXCITING AND AMAZING...or is it?

There's nothing worse than being amped up for an experience only to end up being horribly disappointed.  But at the same time, it's always fun to come across those "hidden gems" that nobody else knows about.

That's what this episode is all about - Vegas' Most Overrated and Underrated!  

Are those celebrity chef restaurants worth the hype?  Should you stay at one of the big-name mega-resorts...or pick a smaller off-strip spot?  How many Cirque shows is TOO MANY Cirque Shows?  This episode will answer those questions - and more!

Thanks to this week's guest contributors:

 - Sam Novak from "Vegas Unfiltered", the Las Vegas blog that's just that - unfiltered!  Sam is never afraid to speak his mind on the goings-on in Sin City...and he gives us his picks for Vegas' Most Overrated & Underrated.  Be sure to follow Sam on Facebook and Twitter.

 - Jenna Nye from "Off The Strip", where the motto is "There's More To Vegas".  Jenna joins us live from Las Vegas and shares some of her favourite underrated hidden gems away from the insanity of the Vegas strip.  Find Off The Strip on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Also included in this week's episode:

- Updates on several Vegas residencies including announcements from Christina Aguilera, Def Leppard and Janet Jackson

 - Info on a new show coming to Vegas in the Fall of 2019, a current show moving down the strip and rave review for a brand new brunch/show

 - And Chef Gordon Ramsay with an announcement about Hell's Kitchen

 

EP#11: The Solo Trip

The inspiration for this episode came from a post on one of my favourite Vegas-related Facebook pages, "Talk Las Vegas", where a gentleman named Michael was asking about whether or not he should do a solo trip to Las Vegas after his travel partner cancelled on him.

I myself have done numerous solo trips and have a blast every single time.  So, I thought I'd share my thoughts on travelling alone to Vegas as well as a few tips & tricks on things to do, where to eat and - most importantly - how to stay safe when travelling solo!

If you're planning on a solo trip to Vegas, check out these links:

- The Vegas Solo...The definitive website for solo travellers headed to Vegas

- Vegas Bright's guide for female solo travellers headed to Vegas - including some great safety tips

- Frontdesk Tip's complete guide to visiting Vegas as a solo traveller

 

EP#8: Bringing Kids To Vegas

This week's episode is about a topic that always manages to get people going online - whether it's on Facebook, TripAdvisor or any of the thousands of other Vegas-related blogs or websites out there:

BRINGING KIDS TO VEGAS 

Big thanks to my guests who joined me to talk about this very polarizing topic:

  • Jessica aka "Vegas Princess Bella" - She's a long-time Las Vegas visitor who runs Las Vegas Pics and Tricks on Facebook and a mom, who recently took her 8 & 10 year-old children to Vegas.

 

 

  • And Maria-Leena Kerr - She's the owner of DanishTourGuide.com, an online concierge platform and sightseeing company.  Maria also provides tour services in Las Vegas and helps families organize their trips to Vegas.  Reach out to her on Twitter and Instagram.

 

Listen in for great insight on bringing children to Las Vegas.

And don't forget: I'm coming to Vegas from February 3rd to 6th/2019!  I'll be at the SOLD-OUT Mondays Dark on February 4th and I'll be bouncing around town throughout those days.  If you're in town and want to connect, please feel free to reach out via Twitter or Facebook!