Republic Services Changing

Las Vegas your only garbage company is planning on making recycling easier. I don’t know if you noticed, but nowadays, garbage people don’t care if you separate your recycling into those pesky little bins. That’s because they have begun separating the recycling at the plant so it is no longer your responsibility. Republic has also already started a pilot program in a few Las Vegas neighborhoods and they are more than satisfied with the results. They have plans to eventually convert all customers over to this new system. Here’s how it will work, Republic will provide customers with new trash bins at no extra charge. Both bins will look the same, except one has a blue lid indicating that is where you have thrown all your recycle products. Republic hopes this “new way” of recycling may entice more people to become involved since you throw everything in one container.

Right now existing service is twice a week garbage pick up and every other week recycling service. When this program is implemented garbage and recycling will be picked up once a week on the same day. This type of recycling also allows more types of products to be recycled like, all those cereal boxes. Another great change with this program is it will help keep neighborhoods cleaned up on those windy days in the valley. Republic representatives have also said that rates should stay the same. We here at beyond the strip already like the sound of this new program. What are your thoughts? Your feedback is appreciated.

If you would like to find out more about the pilot program and the changes please visit the website at


5 Weekend Vegas Activities

Sometimes figuring out what do on the weekend can be tedious. No worries we are here for you. These are five events and activities going on this weekend in Las Vegas that you may want to check out.

You can start the weekend off with a great night out at First Friday which takes place in the Arts District. The hub is at Casino Center Blvd in between Colorado St and California St. The cost to get in is free. There will be live music, art vendors, food, and drinks. All ages are welcome to this event which starts at 6PM and ends at 11pm.

Need a way to keep cool this weekend? Clark County swimming pools are open, some for the season and others just for the weekend. The scorching desert temps this weekend will be in the triple digits. If you prefer to swim in style check out the Aliante Station pool. They have a beautiful pool area with luxurious cabanas to rent. Of course being at a casino you also have many other amenities as well. Either way keep cool this weekend.

The 3rd annual Blues and Brews fest is happening this Saturday from 4pm to 8pm at the Springs Preserve. There will be live music and plenty of brews. They have beers from all over the world and some from right here in Las Vegas from local breweries. The fee is $40 and if you buy your tickets in advance you can come an hour early. This event is 21 and older only. The party also benefits, “keep memory alive”, which supports the mission of the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health in downtown Las Vegas.

The Fremont street experience is always a good time especially with live free entertainment. Every weekend there is music, dancing, and artists performing downtown. This Summers’ entertainment theme is “Rock of the Ages”. There are many restuarants and vendors to check out and the recently popular Zip Line if you’re brave enough.

Always my favorite is the Fresh52 Farmers Markets that go on every weekend rain or shine. They have markets on Saturday located at the Tivoli Village from 8am to 1pm and Sunday at Sansone Park Place from 8:30am to 1pm. This is a great time for the whole family to find things they really like and help out local small business vendors. There are delicious food vendors and fresh produce from local or regional farmers. You’ll  also have a chance to check out some unique items from specialty vendors. Remember to bring your own bag so you can be environmentally friendly but if you forget, that’s okay they’ll have some for you.

Hope everyone has a great weekend and remember to drink lots of water and stay cool.

President Obama is Coming to Vegas

President Obama has made plans to come to Las Vegas on June 7th. According to the Las Vegas Review Journal he will be speaking at UNLV. This is his 8th trip to Vegas since he has been president. Read the full story at

Electric Daisy Carnival Comes Back to Vegas

EDC, an acronym for Electric Daisy Carnival is coming to Vegas again. The show takes place at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway June 8th – 10th. According to the EDC facebook page this event is “the world’s most renowned dance music talent with leading-edge production to create an unparalleled experience of sight and sound.” It also has been referred to as the world’s largest “RAVE”.  The show was sold out quickly after tickets went on sale months ago.

Sometimes events like this can leave a bad mark but last year’s event went on without a hitch and Las Vegas welcomes it back with open arms. The show is a 3 day event that begins in the early evening and doesn’t end until dawn. Carnival goers are required to leave the speedway until it re opens the following evening.  Last Year, it is estimated that EDC hosted for 230k people and  is expected to exceed 345k this year. Now that’s a big party.

It’s not all about the party though. Last year EDC made a positive impact to Las Vegas economy by bringing in an estimated $136 million. The appreciation didn’t end there, Insomniac organizers of EDC also presented $25k checks to 3 charities which included Clark County School District, Smith Center for Performing Arts, and the Injured Police Fund bringing the total up another 75k for Clark County. Since ticket sales indicate a larger group this year that means more money for Las Vegas through tourist spending.

Good news Vegas, EDC has already promised to come back in 2013 so if you couldn’t go this year you can try again. I would like to personally give a big thanks to the organizers at Insomniac for bringing such a special event to our city. If you would like more information on EDC or Insomniac their website is

Trader Joes vs Everyone Else

As a vegan, it is hard to find “extras” that do not include some sort of dairy so it is impossible not to shop at the specialty grocery stores. Even though it is more expensive, the quality can’t be beat, especially the fresh items.I pick and chose what to buy at the specialty stores and then I go to the “cheapo” stores for any rubbish type of food the family wants. The three contenders in Las Vegas are Trader Joes, Sunflower Market, and Wholefoods Market. All of them have great options for specialty items but what makes Trader Joes my store of choice? Let’s start with number three.

3. Trader Joes is small and that makes it convenient to run in and out quickly.

2. Trader Joes has a brand that offers significant discounts to buyers.

1. Best of all they have the most friendly staff in town. No matter what mood I’m in the cashier checking me out always has a smile that makes me want to come back. Thanks Trader Joes

Farming in Las Vegas

Farming in the desert my sound impossible for some but others know it is not. There has been an increased farming trend here in Vegas and it is continuing to grow. There are different strategies to farming in the desert soil that takes a bit of practice.  A majority of the vendors you will see at the local farmers market are from California and rightly so since that is a great place to farm. I’m excited to say that recently there have been several vendors pop up who grow right here in the valley.

This is a great opportunity for others who are interested in farming to try it. The university cooperative extension teaches classes on how to get started for a small fee.  There are several options for growing here in the desert. One way is called “hydroponics” which allows you to grow inside using light bulbs. This also allows you to control the “weather” so you can yield more harvest consistently without mother nature getting in the way. The downfall to this is the amount of electricity it uses which can be costly. You also must have the indoor space to achieve this.

Growing in raised beds has become popular because it gives your garden an organized modern look and can be convienent for those who have problems crouching down to tend the garden. You achieve this by constructing wooden containers and buy garden soil to empty into it. Then you are ready to plant. Beds do eventually break down and have to be replaced.

One other way to grow here is as it’s always been done by popping some seeds in the ground and tending to them as they grow. I may have made this sound easy but it can be difficult because you have to prepare the soil for plants to thrive in. As you probably know desert soil is extremely hard and sandy so the first year will be a bit of a challenge. An expert horticulturist Robert Morris believes mending the soil is the best way to go and has created his own strategy to achieve this. The upside to this is, although it may be a bit costly the first year, once you get it done you will never have to do it again. After 3 years you should have a great yield of your harvest with more to come.

So there you have it Vegas. Amazingly people have made the impossible possible by making the dry desert a place to practice sustainable living by growing their food. The next time you go to a farmers market check to see if it is a local farm.

If you would like info on how to grow in the desert friendly horticulturist Robert Morris has a blog at

Please comment or email me directly at I would love to hear ideas and ways you are improving the quality of life.

Dance Theater Spring Concert Tonight

Las Vegas Contemporary Dance theater performs tonight at the Smith Center celebrating the five year anniversary of LVCDT. There will be five performances tonight that features Ulysses Dove’s “Vespers”, “Lifted” by Rennie Harris, “Variations” by Milton Myers, the return of Krislyn World-Hiel’s “Read Matthew 11:28”, and “Metamorphoses II” & “Opulence” directed by  Bernard H. Gaddis. Tickets range between $27 – $65 and can still be purchased at

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