Access Vegas Insider Vibe – August 02, 2006

In This Issue: Sopranos Last Supper Review, Top 100 Strip Restaurants, Coming Concerts, $199,195 Elvis Slot Winner, Mandalay Bay Expansion, Comedy Pet Theater, Price Is Right Slots, Flamingo Photos, more…

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Newkirk’s Notes – comments on Las Vegas from AccessVegas.Com publisher Ted Newkirk:

Hello From Las Vegas! One more month of summer left, but we are in the middle of a weird “cold” snap with highs barely reaching 100 F with the same for the next 7 days. We hope those of you in “warmer climates” dealing with the record U.S. heat wave are keeping cool.

Fall and football are just around the corner, and while it may be hot where many of you live right now, cool fall temperatures will soon come. October is a great month to be in Las Vegas. Temperatures are moderate (under 90 F), pools are still open, sports and sports betting are in full swing, and the weather is perfect for outdoor dining. Visit our friends at Las Vegas Hotel Deals and check out their discount rates for your fall Vegas getaway. Remember, prices only go up as rooms fill up, so booking early is the way to go!

Had an long, interesting talk with a local cab driver which I’ll go into in our next podcast. Changes are in the air as Vegas cab drivers realize how bad of a reputation they are getting. More and more people are taking shuttles or limos around town just to avoid being ripped off. Don’t take our word for it. Check out this very recent article from our local paper: Old Vegas lives on in shady cab acts.

The cab driver I talked to (and many others) are starting to get fed up with their colleagues who are screwing people over by taking them the long way. Perhaps we’ll see positive changes in the future.

We have a jam-packed newsletter so I’ll get out of the way and let you…

Enjoy This Issue!

See the Grand Canyon in a Jet Helicopter! For years Maverick Helicopters has been providing a true VIP Helicopter experience of the Grand Canyon. We do things a little different than any other helicopter Company. We give you an adventure of a lifetime and not just another tour of the Grand Canyon. Las Vegas Strip tours plus Helicopter Weddings also available!

Show Review: Sopranos Last Supper Dinner Show

After being ushered into the “club” by a thick New York accented, rough around the edges, probably seen a little too much family business girl, it’s obvious; we’ve left Las Vegas and entered the old neighborhood. This is no average show, you can fugghedabout dat. Krave, inside the Aladdin, is letting America’s favorite Mafiosa family, the Baritones AKA Sopranos, hideout and eh, just take care of a few things. Everyone is there, Tony, Bobby Bacala, Christopher, Pauly Walnuts, Johnny Sack, and Uncle Junior. Click to Read The Full Review …

Top 100 Strip Restaurants – It was just 1992 when Wolfgang Puck opened his first restaurant in Las Vegas, and Las Vegas has not been the same since. It has become one of the top cities in the world for restaurants. It has been the celebrity chefs, starting with Wolfgang Puck, that has set Las Vegas apart. Click To Read The Full Story…

Jazz Under the Stars – Smooth Jazz 105.7, The Oasis welcomes the last outdoor “Jazz Under the Stars” of 2006. Join us at Spring Mt. State Park on Sunday, September 3rd at 7.30 PM with multi-award winning trumpeter Rick Braun and the mystical jazz sounds of Hiroshima. Tickets are available now at all four Mr. Bills Pipe and Tobacco Stores, the UNLV Performing Arts Center Box-office or charge by phone at 1-800- 969-VEGAS. Low back chairs and picnic baskets are welcome and kids 12 and under are free! For additional information and directions visit

July Fourth Holiday Visitor Hits Elvis« MegaJackpots at Imperial Palace – Los Angeles-Area Woman is $199,195 Instant Winner – Liana Hovhannisyan of Eagle Rock, Calif., was never much of an Elvis fan — but she is now. She won $199,195.99 on an Elvis MegaJackpots Instant Winners quarter slot machine at the Imperial Palace Hotel & Casino. Click to Read The Full Story …

TI Creates Intimate New Poker RoomTreasure Island welcomes the newest addition to the contemporary resort, an intimate poker room with a comfortable and relaxed atmosphere for both amateur and professional poker players. The non-smoking poker room is located steps away from the TI parking garage and features eight tables of non-stop poker action. Eight LCD plasma screens line the room showing the latest sporting events while upbeat music plays throughout the room creating a sense of energy. The poker room also provides 24-hour complimentary beverage service. The non-traditional table felts feature images of Tangerine, the burlesque nightspot and the tempting Sirens of TI.

Mandalay Bay Expansion Could Include Condo Tower – When it comes to real estate, you can’t find better land than on the Las Vegas Strip and even if you’ve built the most popular hotel or casino, there’s always a way to top yourself. We’ve got your first look at another tower, this one part of an expansion at Mandalay Bay. The tower would sit adjacent to the existing Luxor and Mandalay Bay resorts and include more than 1,300 condos for sale. Click to Read The Full Story …

The World Famous Popovich Comedy Pet Theater Brings Family Entertainment To The Las Vegas Strip – 23 Amazing Pets Rescued From Animal Shelters Flaunt Their Comedic Chops At The V Theater – The World Famous Popovich Comedy Pet Theater (Pet Theater) is the most unique and hilarious show this summer featuring 15 talented cats and eight amazing dogs. The ringleader, Gregory Popovich, leads an extravaganza of juggling and European-style comedy with furry friends performing astounding tricks. It’s a family friendly show that both adults and kids of all ages will enjoy. Click to Read The Full Story …

Elvis Has Returned To The Hilton – The Elvis Presley statue, dedicated at the Las Vegas Hilton on Friday, September 8, 1978, then temporarily removed from the lobby in late 2005 when the property was undergoing renovation, has been returned to a place of honor in the courtyard at the front of the property. Los Angeles sculptor Carl Romanelli created the bronze statue, which was initially on display outside the showroom in a glass case before being moved to the lobby. Elvis debuted at the Las Vegas Hilton (then called the International) on July 31, 1969. He performed 837 consecutive sold-out shows, performing before 2.5 million people. His final show was December 12, 1976.

Talented Friends Perform In Tropicana’s Celebration Lounge – Talented lounge group, Friends, takes the stage every Tuesday through Saturday in the Celebration Lounge at the Tropicana Resort & Casino. Friends consist of six gifted musicians and singers that enjoy working and playing together. Lead vocalist Susan McDonald possesses not only considerable vocals, but also the ability to engage and entertain audiences. Click to Read The Full Story …

Amplify!! Music Comp-Fest – AMPLIFY!! 2006 will be set on Fremont Street in Downtown Las Vegas featuring over 100 showcasing acts in over two days. A unique twist on the music conference atmosphere sets this festival apart by the selection of 4 artists who will receive their portion of $25,000 in cash and gear due to their standout performances during the first two nights of the festival. Select music industry reps will be present at each venue reviewing all performances.á A panel of industry professionals will issue the prizes based on the performances that evening. In addition, industry panels, late-night parties and a Music Biz Poker Tournament will all take place during the festival. Click to Read The Full Story …

Hot Trend Helps Guests Savor the Taste of Summer – Move over vanilla, chefs and ice cream creators across the nation are scooping up innovative flavors. These soothing creamy creations pack a zesty punch of flavor, adding a new dimension to a traditional sweet treat.

  • Rick Moonen’s rm seafood – Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas Can’t decide on just one flavor? At Rick Moonen’s rm seafood, celebrated chef Rick Moonen offers 16 different scoops of savory iced concoctions. The assorted “Ice-Cream Tasting” serves up the following flavors (one scoop of each) for $18: basil, foie gras, nori, uni, black truffle, white truffle, rhubarb, corn, pumpkin or squash, black pepper, tomato, spicy carrot, jalape±o, salsa cruda, wasabi tobiko, and lobster roe.
  • Sensi – Bellagio, Las Vegas At Sensi, Chef Martin Heierling turns to the pandan leaf to add a Southeast Asian flair to his savory pandan ice cream. Chef Heierling pairs this exotic and creamy delight with Sensi’s Chocolate Temptation – a Java coffee and Valrhona chocolate tart served with spiced roasted cashews. Sweet and savory never tasted so good!

Fire-Knife Dancer Stops Show at IP Luau – Intense Training, Samoan Cultural Pride Make It Look Easy – Fo’i Tuitama plays with fire. And knives. And his parents are as proud as they can be. Three nights every week, the 41-year-old Samoan performs the showstopping fire-knife dance in the Polynesian revue during the Imperial Hawaiian Luau at the Imperial Palace Hotel & Casino. Click to Read The Full Story …

Razzle Dazzle Las Vegas with a Whole New Look – Whether you’re dolling up for one special Las Vegas night on the town or looking to take a fabulous new look home, fake eye lashes offer a finished look to any make-up application or hairstyle. Batting eyes at fans and cameras alike, trendsetters such as Paris Hilton and Jennifer Lopez have incorporated fake lashes into their red-carpet wardrobe, turning super glamorous eyes into a hot new trend.

Fake lashes are applied by a certified technician using one of two separate techniques, both of which can be found in the salons of MGM MIRAGE including Cristophe Salon at MGM Grand, A Robert Cromeans Salon at Mandalay Bay and Salon Bellagio. They come in fun colors, rhinestones, lengths and textures with price ranges for every beauty budget from $20 to $250.

Tom Jones Computer Wallpaper – Hello Ladies … Tom Jones is coming to the MGM Grand this month for an extended run. Click for Tom Jones Tickets! To commemorate the event, we have this Tom Jones computer wallpaper you can put on your computer for free! Tom Jones fans are welcome to click and download Tom Jones Computer Wallpaper

Gambling Talk: Video Slots – The Price is Right – with Victor H. Royer. This is a progressive video slot machine. The Price is Right machines are based on the IGT Megajackpots system. There are two versions of this game, one with the Cliff Hanger Bonus and the other with the Plinko Bonus. Both games also feature the Showcase Showdown Bonus as well. The base game is the 9-line video slot machine based on the Price if Right theme which has already been established. Click to Read Complete Article

Vegas Photo Set Of The Week: Flamingo Las Vegas – From the moment you arrive . . . Let The Flamingo pamper you with warm greetings and friendly service that will bring you back again and again and again. With over 3,600 luxurious rooms and suites, the Flamingo lets you relax and float your cares away. Whether your trip is for business or pure pleasure, you’ll find Flamingo has the accommodations, privacy and service that will make your visit memorable.

Vegas Streaming Video Of The Week – Part 2: Siegfried and Roy Highlights 1996. The new Cirque du Soleil “Love” Show now occupies the amazing theatre at The Mirage that was home to Siegfried and Roy for so many years. As Love opens, let’s look back in time 11 years to what was Las Vegas’ premiere show. Siegfried and Roy Highlights 1996: Broadband (only)

Members Mania – We Love Our Readers!

Readers Write

Hello Ted,

I’m a long time subscriber and enjoy receiving your newsletters as I visit Vegas 3 times a year. I work for Creation Entertainment and they’re hosting the 40th Anniversary of Star Trek Convention at the Hilton 8/17-20/06. They’re bringing in about 40 Star Trek celebrities.

We’re expecting about 5,000 attendees a day at this event and people can find out more at Also, we have a site

Thank you,


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  • Labor Day September 1-4 (3 day weekend)
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  • Veterans Day November 10-12 (3 day weekend – Friday off)
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August 2, 2006 ISSN: 1529-2770 About Us

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Access Vegas Insider Vibe – April 26, 2000

Welcome to Access Vegas News and Reviews! This is the newsletter that talks about the Las Vegas attractions, dining, and shows that YOU really care about. This is not spam. If you receive this by mistake, unsubscribe information is at the bottom. Please forward this to friends who may enjoy it, but only in it’s entirety.

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This Issue: EFX

Curious about a restaurant, event, or other Las Vegas attraction that looks fun? Let us review it for you first! Suggestions are always welcome at:


LAS VEGAS NEWS – of interest to tourists:WYNN BUYS DESERT INN – If you use as your “start page”, you already know that former Mirage Resorts founder Steve Wynn has purchased the Desert Inn. He apparently is to buy it “out of pocket” from the money he’s making in the sale of Mirage Resorts to MGM, having complete ownership. We have an ongoing poll asking if you have been to the Desert Inn and are you going to go (or return) now that Steve Wynn owns it at at Breaking story at Also, we are giving away a Desert Inn 50’th birthday section from the local paper in our contests section.

NELLIS AIR SHOW – from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 6, will feature the Air Force’s aerial demonstration team from Nellis, the Thunderbirds; a Canadian parachute team, the Skyhawks; and Air Combat Command’s A-10 Warthog demonstration team. Full story at

STREET SMARTS – The syndicated game show set to hit the air has been filming in and around Las Vegas. Contestants in a Southern California studio will try to guess what “everyday Las Vegans” (actually mostly hotel employees) will say. Story at

SPORTS BETTING – We are following and feel strongly about the attempts to ban betting. Dan Woolford of the Toledo Blade wrote an interesting piece on the issue at A related story about how much illegal bookmakers are looking forward to passage of this legislation at

NASCAR CAFE – The Review Journal just did a story on it with an in-depth listing of the food offerings at and you can read our opening weekend review of the restaurant and Cyber Speedway at

VEGAS ON TV – This Saturday evening, TLC (The Learning Channel) will feature 3 straight hours of Las Vegas specials: King of the Strip, Las Vegas Uncovered, and The Secret World of Las Vegas. Check local listings for time and cable channel.

GOT A WEBSITE? – How about a link to so you can help spread the word and access the archives easier. While at it, don’t forget to link to our sister site – your first stop for the latest Las Vegas info!

WINNERS – Barb Hill of Musegon, MI won the entertainer press photos.

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Quick Concert and Show Notes:

See which shows are playing during your stay and book reservations EVEN if the tickets aren’t on sale yet. Let ShowVegas takes care of all your needs directly online! Search by dates at

MGM – Carrot Top June 22 – July 5, NHL Frozen Fury IV pits the Los Angeles Kings vs. Colorado Avalanche on Sept. 30, and the U.S. Open of Supercross is scheduled for October 14 and 15. Tickets at (702) 474-4000 and MGM discount rooms are available at (MGM link).


Note: Rick Springfield now stars in EFXFEATURE STORY: EFX

efx-02.jpg (24808 bytes)EFX is a true “modern day” Las Vegas show, combining elements of film, Broadway, and rock concerts to bring to life a spectacle that tingles almost every physical sense. This $45 million dollar production has 6000 lights and 85,000 watts of sound. Lasers, dragons, magic, and a floor that rumbles under you are just some of what you see and feel.

But, all this would be nothing without a great theme and great performers and EFX delivers on all counts. Broadway legend Tommy Tune was brought in to replace outgoing David Cassidy (now in his own show with Sheena Easton at the Rio) and he brings an unbelievable amount of poise, energy, and showmanship to this event. And an event it is …

Get there early. Drinks are served (not included), funny and physical stand up comedy by one of the “stagehands” keeps the crown entertained, and roving photographers let you capture the moment. I noticed it was a little warm until … the lights went down and a chill fell over the showroom. We were greeted with a stunning filmed sequence by James Earl Jones (“This is CNN”) who’s head was brought to life in 3D as he gave a booming overview of the show and storyline.

The live cast then entered. Not just onstage but from both sides high above the showroom. This is a truly encompassing experience. While much of the action is onstage, you never know from left to right or high above you where events and characters will appear.

efx-01.jpg (7085 bytes)Mr. Tune made his entrance, tophat and tails, as he was elevated to the stage for his first number “In Dreams”. His appearance is striking. At 6’6″, he almost appears to be on stilts because of his unusually long legs (the illusion aided I’m sure by good costume design). What is more amazing is the energy he has, considering his age of 61 years (Source: E! Online). It was a non-factor as he belted out strong vocals and a number specifically showcasing his mesmerizing tap dance skills.

The general theme revolved around Tommy as a child and a child’s dreams. We were treated to Merlin and King Arthur in a fiery sequence pitting humans and dragons against each other in a blaze of fire and lasers and pyro. The Circus sequence was an ode to P.T. Barnum which featured some spectacular aerial stunts by The Flying Kaganovitch.

Things were slowed down for a few minutes as Tommy did a solo question and answer segment with the audience which tonight lengthened the show by about 10 minutes as something very unusual happened (it didn’t at all seem staged).

The only thing we didn’t really like was a stages question and answer segment where a women claiming to be a former student of Tommy’s had a “heartfelt reunion.” We found out that this happens every single show. It’s an otherwise great show that doesn’t need this bit. If you have to use the restroom, the Q & A is a perfect time.

The show then was underway again with a tribute to Houdini and recreations of two of his more famous attempted escapes. Perhaps the most fun segment followed with “A Dream In Time: H.G. Wells” which featured a wide screen 3D segment (glasses and all) which segued us back in time to the caveman days and a battle for a fair maiden. Dark in the mystical woods and hills, a battle featured stunts and fireworks which had the crowd on the edge of it’s seat. Following was a traditional Las Vegas ending featuring the entire cast.

EFX clocks in at 90 minutes. Children 5 and up are welcome. This is not only an all ages show in the lack of offensive language and nudity, but has a Disney-like quality to it that all ages will enjoy.

EFX plays nightly Tuesday – Saturday at 7:30 and 10:30 PM in the at the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino. Tickets are $75.00 for preferred seating (booth style), $55 regular, and $40.00 for children 5-12. Discount MGM rooms are available at (MGM link) and you can book EFX tickets online before you even leave for Las Vegas for a small service fee at

Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam, Scenic Southwest Tours – by plane, bus, or even helicopter! You’ve seen the glossy ads in the tourist brochures. You’ve thought about it. You come all the way to Las Vegas — why not see one of the some of the most famous landmarks in the world! Don’t by tricked by web sites & magazines that offer discount tours. Taxes, park fees, permits can almost double the price. Our prices are inclusive – no hidden charges! Best Las Vegas Tours

Lots of helpful responses to last week’s questions — thanks to all who wrote!LETTERS TO THE EDITOR:

Judy Brooks of Baltimore MD wrote:

>I just returned from two weeks in Vegas and stayed at the Four queens.
>I can only warn you, if you have another choice DON”T stay at the
>Queens.á The rooms were “ok” but the service was absolutely horrible.
>I have been to Vegas many times and was so shocked that in a town
>where exceptional service is standard, this place falls far short.
>Room service people were rude, restaurant people acted like you were
>invisible, waiting for drinks, well just forget the drinks because we
>never did get one.á When we booked we were told that we got what we
>got no choice of smoking or non and one bed or two.á The only positive
>thing was we enjoyed staying on Fremont street.

Janice wrote:

>To Ray asking about Golden Nugget – there is NO comparison downtown;
>it is a great place to stay – the rooms are very nice (ask for the
>North Tower as it’s closer to the casino and restaurants), the staff
>is friendly, and the food is great in the buffet, Stefano’s(Italian
>with singing waiters), and their coffee shop.á Never had a bad meal in
>any of these places.á We always did very well with comps and found the
>slot hosts to be very accommodating.á Only tables we ever play are
>roulette, so really can’t comment on BJ or otherwise.á We find it hard
>to stay anywhere’s else when we visit.

Dannie Kemp wrote:

>Motel 6 and the Best Western chain generally accept pets.á There are
>restrictions and some of the individual sites are “pet free”, so it is
>a good idea to check before hand.á Las Vegas has kennels if you run
>out of other options.

Steve Fadden wrote:

>Here’s where we’ve played in the past:
>EXCALIBUR: We’ve had great times playing $2-$6 spread limit hold’em
>here.á The dealers and hosts are great people, the players are nice,
>there’s lots of room to walk around and stretch, and the poker rates
>are reasonable for the strip.á Whenever we come to LV, we make the
>Excalibur our home base.á Decent rooms, great rates, and good
>location.á (Yes, there are kids to navigate around, but they’re not in
>the poker room.á 🙂
>MIRAGE: Great atmosphere, good service, and loose play.
>VENETIAN: They have a crazy 1-4-8-8 hold’em game here.á Not the best
>place to play if you’re a serious player, but the poker area is
>mid-casino, with a great view of much of the floor.á Great place to
>take a break from other gaming while still being in the middle of it
>ORLEANS: Local rock garden.á I’ve been told that this place loosens up
>at times, but have never seen it.
>MONTE CARLO: Good 1-4-8-8 game.á The poker room is well-appointed, and
>the dealers are good.á However, it gets cramped when the games are
>BINION’S: Classic poker room, great dealers, and good (but craggy,
>sometimes scary) players.á Got to play here at least once, just to say
>you did it.á Good 4-8 hold’em games.

Tom wrote:

>Lots of great poker rooms.á I travel to play quite often and have
>become especially fond of the games at the Texas Station.á Small room,
>friendly staff.á Good competition to test your skills.á More
>profitable for better players at low limits is the Bellagio.á Better
>mix of tourists to locals.á Somewhat looser play here.á Orleans has
>the best low buy in poker tournaments.á I’ve done well here a couple
>of times.

R Buss wrote:

>My wife and I are taking our second trip to Las Vegas and wondered
>what the best and least expensive means of transportation would be
>from McCarran to the Excalibur?á we’re on a limited budget and don’t
>want to overdo it on transportation costs.á We’ll have suitcases etc.
>Also, is there any truth to the rumor that the Frontier is slated for
>demolition.á We stayed there last trip, and were planning to do that
>again until we heard that the hotel might be gone before we got there.
>We realize that it’s not the classiest place but liked the fact that
>the trolley, which we relied on, stopped next door at the Fashion Show
>Mall going north and south.

The date for the implosion of the Frontier isn’t set yet, but should be set far enough in advance that they won’t be taking reservations for after that point.

If cost is an issue, just catch one of the Bell Trans shuttles. Last I heard, it was about $4 a person from the airport to any Strip hotel. Even though Excalibur is close to the airport, with a shuttle you don’t have to worry about traffic and the meter running.

Don from Winnipeg, Canada wrote:

>I read with disappointment that the Green Shack, a true Las Vegas
>original restaurant is now closed.á Do you have suggestions for a good
>fried chicken dinner similar to the great spread put on at the Green
>Shack?á Thanks.

It was a shame. That place was a classic. I don’t know of any truly outstanding fried chicken dinners. Readers, have you had a really great fried chicken dinner here in town? Let us know at

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Your input is welcome. Write us a “letter to the editor” at Please include your name if you wish to have it published (stating your city is optional). Also, guest article submissions are welcome with full credit to you, your website, etc. if accepted.

Rental Cars – Don’t pay top dollar! Enter the dates of your visit and compare prices from virtually every major rental car agency (most US cities). Book the lowest price company or your regular agency. Save the hassle and some money – Car Rental Savings Search. Few regret renting a car. Free shuttles and city bus rides can be slow and smelly. Taxis can cost what a rental car costs. Your vacation time is valuable — make the most out of it!

ONLINE POLL – “Have you been to the Desert Inn and are you going to go (or return) now that Steve Wynn owns it?” Let’s hear your opinions at — results will be published in two weeks!Results from last poll: ” Would you plan an additional trip to Las Vegas each year to watch spring training games?”

I don’t like baseball to begin with 38%
No, but I might take in a game if they play while I am there. 27%
I won’t make an extra trip, but I’ll adjust one of my regular visits. 13%
I’m requesting the vacation time the minute Las Vegas gets it! 23%


Note: You may enter every contest, but only one entry to each. Please note the expiration date and only enter if you will be in town and can use them. The 20’th entry in each contest will be the winner (unless otherwise noted or link to outside contest). Just sent a blank email to the specified email address — we’ll get your mailing address from you only if you win. Also, please do not enter if you have won within the past month.

EFX show programs — We have two programs, one each to the 20’th and 21’st entries at (contest closed)

Desert Inn Resort — 50’th anniversary special section in the Review-Journal. Enter at (contest closed)

Las Vegas T-Shirt — one size fits all. Enter at (contest closed)

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Have a request for a review? Boggled when you come to town and see the hundreds of dining, attraction, and show opportunities? Let us know what you’d like to hear about! Unlike the tourist magazines where all of the “articles” are really paid ads, we give you the honest scoop. If you appreciate this service, please consider booking your rooms and rental cars for ALL destinations with us at You get secure ordering with the convenience and savings of booking online!

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All contents copyright MM Ted Newkirk. All Rights Reserved.
April 26, 2000