Sunday, November 14, 2010

Las Vegas – Mississippi Style

As we continued our journey towards Texas, we decided to make a detour and visit the Robinsonville/Tunica Mississippi area, an area we haven’t visited, and one Casino Montage Brenda especially was eager to visit.  It’s not like we envisioned; instead of one area of casinos, they’re arranged in clusters, or in some cases, by themselves, in an area of flat cotton fields along the Mississippi River.  Most of the casinos are owned by the same big names that you’d see in Las Vegas, and we decided to stay at the Sam’s Town RV Casino RV Park (you can click on our review on the left), which turned out to be a very nice park for a reasonable price.  Once we were set up, it was time for Brenda to work her magic on the slot machines while I thumbed through catalogs for custom-built Marathon Motor Coaches, anticipating her call to bring the car and help load up all of the money she’d won.  Alas, the call never came. 
Although we didn’t win at the casinos, we did manage to score a lot of free meals.  Between “senior day” coupons, player points, and Brenda’s call to Harrah’s, we grazed for hours at the variety of buffets offered by each casino.  Our favorite by far was Paula Deen’s seafood buffet at Harrah’s.  Brenda managed to score us a two-for-one coupon, which made the price a bargain.  Although I’m not a fan of Paula’s (how many times can you stand the word “Y’all” in one sentence?), many of her famous recipes were available, and we tried to sample them all.  For me, I had trouble getting past the “Uncle Bubba’s” seafood bar with all of the oysters, shrimp, and crab, but managed to sample other items and still leave room for the dessert bar and the best blueberry pie I’ve ever had.  Strangely, there was an area called the “salad bar” with beautifully stacked healthy stuff – untouched and without anyone coming within 10 feet.  Who’d want salad with all of this butter-drenched, fried good stuff available?  Not us, for sure.
All in all, the casinos were interesting.  Much like the ones in Las Vegas, but a bit smaller, and because of the time of year and economy, much less crowded.  The Harrah’s complex is particularly impressive, with it’s extensive facilities that include a convention center, event center, RV park, golf course, pools, children’s arcade, and more.  But aside from the casinos, this is a largely rural area, and the nearest shopping is over 30 miles away in the Memphis suburbs.
MS River Museum1 We did manage a bit of culture on our visit when we stopped at the Tunica Riverpark and Mississippi River Museum.   MS River Museum We expected the usual small-town type of museum, and were surprised by the beauty of the buildings and the extensive museum collection.  Besides the exhibits, there were aquariums, videos, and exceptional art work to view, and we even watched a riverboat make it’s  MS Riverboatway upstream.  This was a place where not only the exhibits, but the facility itself were enjoyable to tour.  If you’re in the area, do yourself a favor and drop by.

Leaving Mississippi, we traveled to Little Rock AFB, Arkansas to spend a day stocking up at the base commissary and to visit friends that we hadn’t seen since 1978.  We had a great time reminiscing about our time together at England AFB, LA and catching up on each other’s lives since.  From there, we headed toward Texarkana intending to stay at a state park just inside Texas.  Unfortunately, as we approached Texarkana, red lights and alarms in the coach indicated a severe engine overheat condition, and since we were near Motorhome being towed an exit with an RV Park, we pulled in for the night.  The next day we watched as our “home” was towed off to the local Freightliner service facility where after three days of labor and a new fan hub, we were able to hit the road again.  I sensed that the cost was going to be bad when, while standing at the service counter, the cashier looked at my bill, opened up the AED (Automated External Defibrillator), and began reviewing the cardiac arrest procedures.  It’s a good thing he did, and the good news is that the burn marks on my chest are healing nicely.

Hey, we’re back in Texas and have plans to visit some interesting places, so in the words of Paula Deen, “Y’all come back so Y’all can see where we’ve been without Y’all, OK Y’all?”


  1. Oh, I feel your pain. A few weeks ago our fan hub went out and the BIG wrecker had to tow us 50 miles to Freightliner in Orlando. It is such a sick feeling following behind your coach being towed. Glad you are back on the road again.

  2. Your picture give me chills. Seems you have handled all, and will continue on. Really enjoy you posts. I thank you, please continue to share. Marie and the famous Chief

  3. Great post! Glad your RV troubles are fixed and not to bad. (?).
    We hope to visit Tunica soon so thanks for the pics and info, ya'll.

  4. We've been to Tunica several times and have really enjoyed it. The Paula Deen buffet is almost like sitting in someone's southern home having a home cooked meal. It is by far, the best buffet I've ever had. Also, as I remember, Harrah's has an RV park with shuttle service to the casino. Tunica is only about 20 miles south of Memphis for touring Graceland and the Beale Street blues area.