The lights.  The screams of joy winning $500 playing Craps, and the moans of drinking way too much as your friends drag you on the strip.  Yep, that’s Vegas.  I love this town- its like a second home to me.  For 3 generations my family has come here to party and to get together.  I believe one of my very first words was “Stardust” (the casino).  Its tradition that when someone turns 21 that you must come and celebrate it in Vegas.  I have such fond memories here in Vegas- meeting Leonardo Di Caprio and partying it up with a bunch of celebs in celebration for his birthday, having my dad out-party everyone for my 21st birthday, building a friendship with a bartender at Carnival that has lasted over 8 years, and meeting a guy at Venom in Vegas that actually turned into a relationship.  Now upon these memories I can add going to Vegas for professional reasons- a scientific conference.

When a friend told me she was thinking of going to a paleontology conference in Vegas I immediately said I would be her tour guide.  I never turn down a chance to go to Vegas!  Next thing you know a group of UCLA paleontology students jumped on the band wagon once they heard I was going and could crash with me.  It turned out to be a great weekend of meeting big wig scientists, meeting people outside my field of interest, and of course taking everyone to my favorite spots in Vegas.    

First stop- Studio 54.  Bachelor party of Elvis impersonators and watching the courting game of single men and women (I would think but its Vegas so who knows!).  One thing I love about Vegas is people watching.  Although I’m dancing my heart out on the dance floor, I love observing what’s going around me, such as a girl throwing herself on a guy to get invited to his table area.  Obviously her fake boobs didn’t work this time.

Second day- I of course had to go to Carnival to meet with my bartender friend Flippy.  If you go to Vegas you have to go to Carnival!!!!  Such a great vibe, and the bartenders are awesome!  They are those bartenders that do all the crazy tricks, and Flippy is such a character he makes the experience 10 times better!  It is by far my favorite place to go to in Vegas!  And after Carnival, you can stop in Harrah’s Dueling Piano bar- once again, by far one of the best places to go, and the best Dueling Piano bar in all of Vegas!

So amongst all this partying, I learned much talking with the scientists and poking my head into the talks.  Who says science can’t be fun?  

And my plug in until Dec 15th- don’t forget to go to the SciFund CHallenge on rockethub and donate: