Las Vegas with Teens?

Dec 12th, 2007, 04:13 PM
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 371
As long as you are comfortable discussing gambling,drinking and prositution

You have to be honest with teens. tell them the truth about what they are seeing.

dandj is offline  
Dec 12th, 2007, 05:19 PM
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The folks handing out literature about massage parlors, etc. are an infinitesimal part of the Las Vegas experience.
happytrailstoyou is offline  
Dec 12th, 2007, 05:20 PM
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Heavens yes - they've seen plenty when we've been to NYC or Boston - everything becomes a platform for discussion. Glad to hear Las Vegas is trying to clean some of that up though.
marcommom is offline  
Dec 13th, 2007, 03:55 AM
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LV must have cleaned up pretty quickly because when we were there at the end of October they were handing out the cards. We went walking on the strip early one morning and the cards were littered all over the sidewalks.
Birdie is offline  
Dec 13th, 2007, 06:47 AM
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We did the Las Vegas/Hoover Dam/Grand Canyon/Zion/Las Vegas trip three years ago when daughter was 15 and son was 11. Now the son at 14 realizes what he was really too young to notice and wants to go to Vegas again! Kids see it all, and like someone said, talk honestly about things (even every day at home). We stayed at Treasaure Island and the Flamingo. It was a wonderful trip. We also did Red Rocks one day. We had a great time and are looking forward to going back in a year or two. There are just so many places to visit and now with an 8th grader and a college student, vacation time is tough to find. We are lucky enough to spend most of our summer at a camp on a lake that's local to where we live. We were in LV in April and it was barely pool weather. Great for walking around, though. Oh, we didn't gamble very much - we're not really interested in that.
hockeymom is offline  
Dec 13th, 2007, 04:47 PM
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We call them "porn flickers" because they snap the cards against their hands to draw your attention and then shove them into your unsuspecting (or maybe completely suspecting!) hands. They make for super free souvenirs!

Depending on how long you'll be in Vegas and if you'll have a car, there are tons of "off-strip" options, both near and far.

Spiro gave you a good list, but I feel the need to expand on it. Red Rock canyon is definitely worth the drive. From any hotel on the strip, it's realistically a 30-45 minute drive, depending on traffic. There is a 15-mile, one-way scenic loop to drive with marked trails all along the way.

Valley of Fire is a little further, with not as many trails, but a great scenic drive, especially if you loop down past Lake Mead.

Zion is 2.5-3 hours, a fairly scenic drive, and totally worth the trip, even just to drive through the park. If you don't want to go that far, St. George Utah has some great canyons and state parks.

Two hours away is the China Ranch date farm - a true desert oasis.

Death Valley is about 2 hours away. Interesting history (Borax mining, pioneer route, etc.).

Any of these are a 1-day trip if you don't mind spending most of the day in the car!

Finally, I wouldn't recommend the Excalibur if you don't want too much kitsch. It's pretty gross. Luxor has a huge arcade and would be a more agreeable option for both teens and adults. TI (Treasure Island) is also a little more appealing for the younger set, as well as Caesar's.

And of course, if you want to do an overnighter - the Grand Canyon is about 4 hours.
ceb1222 is offline  
Dec 13th, 2007, 05:03 PM
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The question you need to ask yourself is this: what message am I sending to my teenage boys if I organize a trip to Las Vegas to go to Las Vegas? The posts on this thread are indicative of the kind of topics that arise when Las Vegas is mentioned. We have so few years when our children are with us that I feel it is imperative to fill those years with wholesome memories and a great sense of adventure when it comes to travel.

In your post you yourself wrote that "it is not the kind of trip we normally take as a family." My thought is this~ if you want to take your teenage boys on the trip, fly to Las Vegas, rent a car and hightail it out of there ASAP to our national parks. Research Zion, Bryce and the Grand Canyon. Go to one or two or all three, depending on how much time you have. Make sure if you go to the Grand Canyon that you have a minimum of two nights of accommodation all set INSIDE the park. If you go, no matter which park or parks you go to, work into your itinerary time for your boys to do day hikes in the parks. Your teenagers will have an unforgettable time seeing these extraordinary parks, and you'll have a great time experiencing some of the best of what our country has to offer.

canyonjane is offline  
Dec 13th, 2007, 08:03 PM
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I think the problem with defining it as "unconsented-to touching" is that that is so incomplete a definition that I envision the child telling an adult a rape was committed when it was "only" touching of private parts. I'm certainly in no way condoning the latter, but the incompleteness of the definition could cause a problem later.

what message am I sending to my teenage boys if I organize a trip to Las Vegas to go to Las Vegas? The posts on this thread are indicative of the kind of topics that arise when Las Vegas is mentioned. We have so few years when our children are with us that I feel it is imperative to fill those years with wholesome memories and a great sense of adventure when it comes to travel.

The message I want to send to my children when we travel is that we love to travel with them, and to be with them, and we want them to experience things the way they really are. The national parks are great, but they're certainly not all that area has to offer. I see nothing wrong with my kids seeing "real life" whether it's on the streets of Las Vegas or New York or San Francisco.

Dec 13th, 2007, 08:19 PM
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 36,768
dmlove, you have a point, but I'm really struggling to find any possible negative outcome of a 10 year old child coming to an adult and saying she (or he) was "raped" because Uncle Bob touched her private parts without permission. Surely some talk will follow, and between them they will discover the exact nature of the assault. But frankly I'd much rather have instilled the message and have the child come back to report it than to have said, "go ask your mother", which she never did, and now ignores reporting what happened at all. There had to be some reason the child asked what rape meant to begin with.

As I've said all along, it depends on the child -- and if you think the child is capable and ready for a full fledged discussion of the difference between total penetration and "only" being fondled, then more power to you -- fire away with the full definition, perhaps with a blackboard, books, and well executed illustrations -- maybe even a film. But I'll still maintain, for most 10 year olds who asked to begin with, the basic "incomplete" definition is probably enough for right then.
NeoPatrick is offline  
Dec 14th, 2007, 05:44 AM
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I take my kids everywhere & they are younger than yours, and that includes, Key West & New Orleans. However, I would not take them to Vegas proper as there are certain unsavory elements that just can't be avoided. That being said, I was quite unsettled by all the kids that were present last time I was there...If you have to go - I'd head out to the Dam, the Red Rocks area, etc. be cheaper also.
Dec 14th, 2007, 06:14 AM
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dmlove, Thanks for sharing your clear thinking with us. HTTY
happytrailstoyou is offline  
Dec 14th, 2007, 07:19 AM
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A few year ago we took our teens to Las Vegas to meet some friends. I wish we had never gone. There a lot of places to see the outdoors, take in roller coaster, etc. I had read how, LV had cleanup etc but you are still taking your teens to a place meant to gamble. Even if you have no intention partaking in it you have to walk through the casino to get anywhere. That is what they want you to do, gamble not sit by the pool. It is a personal choice. Your post sounded like I could have written it before I went.
I would recommend flying into Phoenix, spend some time by a pool there and make your trips from there.
ceg is offline  
Dec 14th, 2007, 07:47 AM
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I've never taken a child to Las Vegas (ours was 4 the last time we went and it just did not seem like a good idea on any number of levels), but we frequently take our now 12-year-old on casino trips, mostly to Atlantic City, and notably to the Gulf Coast pre-Katrina, and have usually felt it was successful. Now, the places we frequent are both cleaner and with less kid appeal than LV, but it depends on both your comfort level and what kind of kid you have. Ours is obsessed with both dining and architectural details, and is not yet interested in pictures of girls in thongs. I would say that you need to be comfortable with your children witnessing adult behavior, and I'm not sure I would think it a really good idea to have teen-agers walking around without an adult (and I believe there is a curfew on the strip). There is a lot of interesting stuff, and a kid who was interested in technical stuff might really enjoy both the Bellagio fountains and the Stratosphere, as well as the Hoover Dam. By the way, while we love casino trips, we're not really gamblers either, which has become something of a running family joke.
persimmondeb is offline  
Dec 16th, 2007, 11:32 AM
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Thanks so much for all your frank responses. I think we are going to cross LV off the list for this trip - it's not a clear cut enough destination for who we are - we'd rather stay near our family visit destination or just go straight to a national park. Your responses really helped us realize that Las Vegas is a bit of a stretch for us, and we really appreciate it. Going to miss the Hoover Dam, tho, we all would have loved that - but not a reason to walk by a gazillion casinos!
Happy trails to all!
marcommom is offline  
Dec 17th, 2007, 10:19 AM
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"Brutforce" is very wise.
dandj is offline  
Dec 17th, 2007, 10:40 AM
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"Wise" would certainly be a stretch, informed may be more accurate.
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