Glorifying Gangsters, Vegas-Style - Page 2
Las Vegas, one-time gambling (er, excuse me, “gaming”) capital, is now a high-class theme park offering all types of entertainment opportunities, but it hasn’t forgotten its roots. This week, the creators of The Las Vegas Mob Experience (not the actual experience, but an interactive museum), family members of well-known gangsters, and celebrities were on hand for the opening of The Las Vegas Mob Experience. Joining them were famous pretend-mobsters James Caan, Tony Sirico, and Frank Vincent, as well as mob-fans Pamela Anderson, Peter Greene, and Rick Harrison (of Pawn Stars, there—no doubt—to authenticate the furnishings).
Putting aside any moral reservations we may have, The Las Vegas Mob Experience can be viewed as a valuable historic display (wait a sec…my tongue is stuck in my cheek). Visitors are “educated” through both videos and holograms “on the mob and how Vegas worked back in the day.” The experience is “Anchored by the largest collection of authentic artifacts, memorabilia, photos and videos of organized crime ever assembled” (we’ll have to ask Geraldo about that), and explores Vegas history, and what role organized crime (not all Italian or Italian-American) played in its transformation from desert town to tourist destination.
Located in the Tropicana Hotel (where else?), The Las Vegas Mob Experience is open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day. Annual passes are available to those who would like to visit often, and—for those of us who couldn’t make the Grand Opening (March 29, 2011)—an on-line store offers bullet-riddled t-shirts and “hot shorts” with “An offer you can’t refuse…” emblazoned across the butt, among its mob-inspired wearing apparel (not recommended attire for your mob initiation ceremony) and souvenirs. Perhaps, though, the offer you can’t refuse is to text your name to 25155 “to get a call from a made guy.”