Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Another Las Vegas Weekend

After the GREAT food stop at Emma Jean's Holland Burger Cafe in Victorville, CA, for breakfast, we continued our trek to North Las Vegas.

Upon arriving, we proceeded to unwind by sitting at Andy and Jenn's HD Big Screen Vizio TV to watch American football starting with the Connecticut vs. Buffalo International Bowl (UConn 38-20) and the NFL's NFC Wild Card game between Arizona and Atlanta (Cardinals 30-24).

Although we noshed throughout the broadcast, it was time to go out to dinner and experience a little bit of Las Vegas' allure.

First stop...

The Hofbrauhaus

This German Beer Garden is owned by the same people who own the famous Beer Hall of the same name in Munich, Germany.  It is a fun place to start your evening.

Brandon Bennett... This One's for You!

Andy and I enjoying a liter of Lager and NO, those are NOT horns coming out of my head.

Brauts, Sauerkraut, Hot Mustard, Mashed Potatoes and Beer!

This was a way to help get me excited about going to Europe again as Germany, along with Spain, are the two countries that I really want to explore.

Mike Contreras and Ryan Brucker

As it turns out, they are beer drinking veterans.  Who would have guessed it?

Anyone for a Putsch?

Getting into the Bavarian spirit with our hosts Jenn and Andy on the left.

Cool Bavarian Hat

This snappy lid was on sale in the Hofbrauhaus' Alpine oriented Gift Shop, and, YES, those ARE horns.

With stylish hats like this all the rage, no wonder Jason and Matt opted for Austria. 

The Las Vegas Strip

After Dinner Football

We left the Hofbrauhaus to enjoy the NFL's AFC Wild Card game that saw San Diego hosting Indianapolis (Chargers 23-17 in overtime).  What better place to watch this exciting game than the New York, New York's ESPN/Sports Book viewing area.

"What Happens in Vegas, Stays in Vegas!"

Sunday started with, what else...

The Draft House is owned by a former University of Wisconsin Badger and has a ton of great Badger and Green Bay Packers football memorabilia.  The owner has been a big part of the equation that has seen Wisconsin play UNLV several times in the past decade.  Brauts for breakfast, just when you thought life couldn't get ANY better!

Elroy "Crazylegs" Hirsch
The picture hung proudly near our table.

A great Hall-of-Fame wide receiver for both Wisconsin and the Los Angeles Rams.  He would eventually become the Athletic Director at Wisconsin.  In 1958 he did a one-day kids sports clinic in connection with the Union 76 Oil Company's Community Outreach Program at San Marino High School.  I attended and got to shake his hand that day.

It was my first brush with greatness and it was VERY COOL!

In Henderson's Green Valley Casino Complex

Pulled Pork Sandwich, enough said!

Another great football afternoon that saw two more NFL Wild Card games being contested.

In the AFC, the Baltimore Ravens beat the Miami Dolphins 27-9 while the Philadelphia Eagles outlasted the Minnesota Vikings 26-14 in the NFC nightcap.

"Its a Major Award!"

The EXCELLENT Italian-inspired decor in Lucille's.

Food, Friendship and Football were not the only activities in which we interacted...

Whiffle Ball

The batter, Ryan Brucker, was the starting center fielder for the San Jose State baseball team that played in the NCAA's 2000 College World Series.  Here he is seen about two pitches before Andy threw him some chin music!

Greco-Roman Wrestling

Mike and Andy were inspired by the antics of Andy and Jenn's two bulldogs, Blitz and Dooley.

Loren and Ryan Brucker

Often mistaken for brothers, this father and son duo felt relieved to escape with their lives after a weekend with the Contreras boys!

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