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I spent Thanksgiving in Las Vegas. I got to party, eat the best holiday meal of my life, and see friends.

rebecca and chris posing for a selfie on the las vegas strip
My friend Chris came up with the plan to go to Las Vegas for the holiday. Rebecca Radillo
  • I went to Las Vegas with a friend instead of going home for Thanksgiving.

  • We explored some tourist hot spots and checked out the local restaurant scene.

  • I had the best Thanksgiving meal of my life at STK Steakhouse, and the trip was totally worth it.

When my best friend Chris suggested we spend Thanksgiving in Las Vegas, I immediately said yes.

It can be hard to justify flying home so close to Christmas — both financially and time-wise as a teacher. But I figured Vegas would offer an alternative to spending the week alone eating at my university's buffet.

Our friend from college, who's a Vegas native, wanted to show us the sites on and off the Strip, so we set off for four days of excitement.

Before the holiday, we checked a bunch of activities off our to-do list

chris and rebecca posing in front of the entrance to omega mart in area 15 in las vegas
Omega Mart in Area 15 was worth the hype. Rebecca Radillo

I flew directly from Boston to Las Vegas on Monday evening, and Chris landed shortly after I did.

We made sure to set aside our Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons for The Hunger Games: The Exhibition at the MGM Grand and Meow Wolf's Omega Mart at Area 15, respectively.

The "Hunger Games" exhibit wasn't too busy, which gave us ample time to enjoy the costumes and set replicas. Even when we went into the exhibit's archery range, there was only one other group of four or five people with us.

Omega Mart more than lived up to its social-media hype — you could feasibly spend an entire day there. It totally wowed me with its creative storytelling and surrealist art installations.

chris and rebecca posing for a selfie inside the sphere in las vegas
We watched "Postcard From Earth" at the Sphere. Rebecca Radillo

We also knew we had to check out the Sphere, even if U2 wasn't in town for their residency.

Chris and I were blown away by the nature-oriented show "Postcard From Earth." The only word I can use to describe the film is spectacle.

The Sphere's maximalist technology and wraparound screens left us in awe.

I was happy to explore the Arts District for quieter meals off the beaten path

Our friend coaxed us off the Strip for dinner and drinks at her favorite local spots in the Arts District — Mezcla, Tacotarian, and Velveteen Rabbit.

Catching up with a dear friend I hadn't seen since March 2020 in her hometown gave me the same warm feeling as going home for Thanksgiving.

chips and guac on a table with drinks from tacotarian in las vegas
The chips and guac at Tacotarian were great. Rebecca Radillo

Between Mezcla's ceviche and Tacotarian's guac, the Arts District easily has some of Vegas' best food. But you'd never know if you only stayed on the Strip.

We planned one big night out to do Vegas right

I'm a big fan of "Coyote Ugly" (2000), so the saloon in New York, New York Bar was on my list for our big night on the Strip.

We were encouraged to play drinking games in exchange for free shots, tear up the dance floor, and let loose.

We had so much fun that we came back.

chris and rebecca posing with a neon thunder from down under sign at the club in vegas
Thunder From Down Under was a great time.Rebecca Radillo

But Thunder From Down Under was the highlight of the trip.

Being surrounded by bachelorette parties and birthday groups cheering for the all-Aussie cast of male dancers made for a rowdy yet invigorating night — and I say that as a lesbian.

Being pulled on stage for one of the routines indulged my desire to be the center of attention, if only for the three minutes and four seconds "Apologize" by OneRepublic offers.

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, so I couldn't ignore it completely

thanksgiving platter from stk in las vegas
I ordered my own Thanksgiving feast at STK.Rebecca Radillo

Because Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, I was on the hunt for the best meal in Vegas.

Reservations were a little hard to come by, but STK Steakhouse at the Cosmopolitan pulled through with the best-tasting turkey platter I've had in my life (sorry, Mom).

Even though I would've loved a home-cooked meal for Thanksgiving, STK delivered and gave me a dinner worth remembering with my dearest friend.

Spending the holiday in Las Vegas was totally worth it

Rebecca and hr friends posing for a photo with their drinks from velveteen rabbit in las vegas
I'm glad I flew to Las Vegas instead of spending Thanksgiving by myself. Rebecca Radillo

On my flight back to Boston Friday morning, I couldn't stop thinking about how blessed I was to have this trip.

I got to party the night away, eat the best Thanksgiving meal I've ever had, and see some people I love.

I'm already thinking about what I want to do, and who I want to see, on my next trip to Sin City.

Read the original article on Business Insider