LAS VEGAS - After seven years of living on the West Coast, I finally had the opportunity to visit Las Vegas on a one-day field trip, eager to discover what teens are able to do in "Sin City."I have often heard teachers questioning underage students whenever they would say that they followed their parents to Las Vegas during summer vacation. "What could you possibly do in Vegas?" teachers would ask. "There's nothing for kids to do but stay at the hotel." Much to my surprise, the 11 hours that we spent in Las Vegas included educational and entertaining motives that didn't involve gambling, smoking or drinking. In fact, our group stayed out of trouble for the entire trip. Although it was inevitable to walk past slot machines and bars within the hotels, we were much more interested in our two main attractions: the Bodies exhibition at the Luxor and the Blue Man Group show at the Venetian. With over 200 preserved bodies and specimens on display, the Bodies exhibition explored every aspect of the human body with a depth that can't be found in an anatomy textbook. Although some of us were worried that we would have bad reactions immediately after eating, we were too fascinated by the specimens to worry once we entered the exhibition. Peering into the complex layers of skin, veins, and muscles within the specimens, I gained an appreciation for how the human body functions. We all look different on the outside, yet there are so many common traits on the inside. According to one of the experts, humans spend a half-hour as a single cell after conception. From there, we develop into the unique individuals that we are today. We ended our field trip with a highly-anticipated Blue Man Group show with seats in the front section. Ponchos were given to us so we would be protected from any paint, gumballs or other substances that might fly into the audience. Even before the show began, scrolling marquees got everyone pumped up with interactive prompts, which included recognizing audience members for a birthday and an Olympic medal. The actual show lasted for nearly two hours, and the Blue Man Group presented a spectacular performance that captivated the audience with lively percussion and bright lights. Overall, my first experience in Las Vegas was much more enjoyable than I initially thought it would be. There's definitely something for teens to do.
********** Published: June 16, 2011 - Volume 10 - Issue 9