Trevor Dayne, a 24-year-old from the suburbs of Chicago, took notice of the lights of the Vegas Strip in the summer of 2001 and became obsessed with trying to go to Las Vegas.
“When I was first planning my first trip, I had a full-time job with a trade school and the company would allow me to take off two weeks before vacation and I planned on that particular week,” Mr. Dayne said.
“I’d just quit and it was a nice summer day, and I had a full gas tank and that was it — I packed up and took off.”
The objective, he said, was to walk downtown on any given weekday, “just feel the streets and then visualize what downtown Las Vegas would look like at night.” The result was a five-hour binge of walking and listening to “trashy” rock at the Chippendales show and seeing the Flamingo, Planet Hollywood and more.
It was a memorable start for Mr. Dayne, who developed a lifelong affinity for Sin City.
“I’m a huge fan of Vegas, but that was way before it became a self-proclaimed boom town,” he said. “It was just one long party in the middle of what was nothing more than just a highway and bunch of prostitution.”
Once again, Mr. Dayne was on the Strip at the weekend this month as a full-time employee with a job package that included hotel accommodations and airfare — not without a challenge.
“With more tourism dollars, more spending, there’s more going to the bars,” he said. “That’s one of the things that makes me nervous.”
Not that he is quaking in his boots.
“Honestly, Las Vegas remains the entertainment capital of the world and the most desirable place to visit. Vegas will always be the same way,” he said. “Whether you plan on going by yourself, or whether you’re with a group, there’s always something to see and do.”