Weird Things Only In Vegas (Mostly!)

Just a few of the weird things here in Las Vegas!

Cell phone towers "disguised" to look like palm trees!
Cell phone towers "disguised" to look like palm trees! | Source
Cell phone tower disguised to look like a pine tree!
Cell phone tower disguised to look like a pine tree! | Source
Young man climbing a palm tree!
Young man climbing a palm tree! | Source
Slot machines at the McCarran Airport, Las Vegas!
Slot machines at the McCarran Airport, Las Vegas! | Source
More slot machines at the airport here!
More slot machines at the airport here! | Source
Slot machines located inside a local grocery store here in Las Vegas!
Slot machines located inside a local grocery store here in Las Vegas! | Source
Kiosk available in many places that you can use to renew your auto tags and do other DMV transactions, my husband used one of these at a AAA office.
Kiosk available in many places that you can use to renew your auto tags and do other DMV transactions, my husband used one of these at a AAA office. | Source
The Guardian Angel Cathedral in Las Vegas, home of the 'chip monk!"
The Guardian Angel Cathedral in Las Vegas, home of the 'chip monk!" | Source
Arthur Nelson, also referred to as the "chip monk"... this is regarded by snopes to be not true, but only because Arthur who has been doing this for over 40 years, is not a "monk" ~ that's simply his nickname!
Arthur Nelson, also referred to as the "chip monk"... this is regarded by snopes to be not true, but only because Arthur who has been doing this for over 40 years, is not a "monk" ~ that's simply his nickname! | Source

I knew living in Las Vegas would be interesting!

It's been an interesting adventure so far living in Las Vegas, I've been here about five months now and I'm learning new things every day! Now there are some things here that must be "only in Vegas" and some that are in the Southwest U.S. in general

Driving around, I've found that one of the most interesting "oddities" are the cell phone towers. A lot of them are "disguised" so they look like either palm trees or pine trees! I thought this was so neat, I actually took pictures of them when I would come here to visit! My husband has been here longer than I have, I was in Wisconsin trying to sell our home there and downsize. When I visited him, I took strange pictures of things like cell phone towers! People must have thought that granny is "off her rocker" for doing that!

I found these things interesting though, and friends that I've showed the photo's to have also. We did go to Los Angeles a couple months ago, and we DID see the cell phone towers that look like pine trees there, as well as here in Las Vegas. So, it must be a Southwest U.S. thing (as far as I know!)

My guess is that they are disguised as palm trees and pine trees so that they will be aesthetically pleasing to the eye. When you're looking at the landscape, who wants to see an ugly white or green metal cell phone tower in the middle of pretty scenery? I thought that was one of the neat, "quirky" things that we've found while living here.

Another neat thing is that in the springtime, you will see people "shimmying" or climbing up the palm trees to trim off the old, brown fronds that have drooped down the side of the tree. I found that watching these guys go UP the palm trees was fascinating! Now me, with somewhat of a fear of heights, I have to admire these guys who do it on a daily basis (in the Spring anyway) and make it look so effortless! My hat's off to them!

I still remember my first time visiting Las Vegas, and being fascinated by the slot machines in the airport that people can play, I thought this was very unusual, and I personally don't know of anywhere else where you can play slot machines in the airport! So, this goes down as one of the "weird" things that seem to be unique to Las Vegas. Now what I wonder is, does anyone WIN anything at the airport slot machines?

And while we're on the subject of slot machines, did you know that here in Las Vegas, you can go to the grocery store for a half gallon of milk,some bread, and you can try your hand at the slot machines available in just about every grocery store here in Las Vegas? Yes, you read that right, there ARE slot machines in grocery stores here! I'm not sure WHY that surprised me, but it did, and I found it humorous in a way. Uhhh, honey? I need to go to the grocery store for a couple things..... six hours later... "where's Mom?"

One of the funniest things we've found are the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) kiosks that are available in many places here, not just at the DMV office. Now this wouldn't be funny at all, and I'm guessing that other states have these kiosk's as well, where you can renew your yearly tags, and process other transactions as well. BUT, did you know that at the DMV kiosk's here in Las Vegas, when you are finished processing your transaction the machine will talk to you? Yep, you will hear the voice of ELVIS saying "thank you, thank you very much." I cracked up when my husband told me about it. I want to go renew my tags now! Oh wait, they're not due for renewal until next July... but I just want to hear the machine say 'thank you, thank you very much." Ok, so I am easily amused I guess!

Another strange thing that I have heard about, but I haven't been there to check it out yet, is a Catholic Church close to the Las Vegas strip that has services on Saturday afternoon's for tourists. Now this wouldn't be strange at all, except for the fact that tourists CAN put casino chips into the offering plate at this church. Then there is what they refer to as a "chip monk" that goes around to casino's and cashes them in.

Now, the website snopes has said that the story of the "chip monk" is false, but try telling that to Arthur Nelson who has been doing this for over 40 years! He takes the casino chips collected during services at the "Guardian Angel Cathedral" around to the casino's and cashes them in. Now the reason "snopes" says it's not true that he is NOT really a "monk."  And he isn't. He was the organist for the church for years, and is still there. The title "chip monk" was an affectionate nickname given to him by casino workers from when he would come there to cash in the chips.

The church is called the "Guardian Angel Cathedral" and they are located at 302 Cathedral Way here in Las Vegas. In a way it makes sense that they do this, tourists may have casino chips on them rather than cash, and decide to use them to help out the church. And while they are at it, they say a little prayer for good luck, it's a win-win!


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Comments 8 comments

sweetoneangel profile image

sweetoneangel 5 years ago from New Jersey

Great hub I live in New Jersey and here the cell phone towers look like pine trees.


DexisView profile image

DexisView 5 years ago from New England

Love to travel on hub pages! Daughter just got back from Vegas and loved it...she had lots of cool photos.


KathyH profile image

KathyH 5 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

Wow, sweetoneangel! I did NOT know that!! I've been to New Jersey (Atlantic City) but don't remember seeing those, I bet I wasn't as observant back then as I am now! :) Thanks for your thoughtful comment! :) I appreciate it!


KathyH profile image

KathyH 5 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

Thanks, DexisView! Glad you like it! :) Vegas is a fascinating, interesting place with lots of history, I really like it here so far! Thanks for your thoughtful comment! :)


shuck72 profile image

shuck72 5 years ago from Seattle

Interesting story about the chip monk, thanks


KathyH profile image

KathyH 5 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

You're welcome, shuck72, glad you liked it! :)


SusieQ42 5 years ago

I don't see disguised cell phone towers here in Florida. I'm not so sure about the chips being put on an offering plate in a church, do you???


KathyH profile image

KathyH 5 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

Hi SusieQ42, I didn't see cell phone towers in Florida either that looked like palm trees, so maybe it is mostly out west?

I guess people still can put chips in the church offering plate, then later they are traded in for money.But the guy that trades them in is not a "monk." I read somewhere that sometimes the church gets a bigger offering amount by accepting them. It kind of makes sense, since this church's Saturday afternoon services are geared towards tourists to Las Vegas. :) If those tourists been to the casino's they probably have some chips with them! ;)

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