I moved to Las Vegas at the age of 26.  I packed up my B210 Datsun, 5 year old son and 9 year old daughter on Dec. 5 1977 and headed west.  It was in the middle of a snow storm in Wisconsin.   It took me 5 days to get to Las Vegas.  I had friends who owned a 7-11 that invited me to Vegas with the promise of a job and a place to stay.  My family had a fit that I was leaving on my own with two little kids and made bets on how long I’d actually stay.  My grandma gave me the longest; she gave me six weeks.  That was over 30 years ago and I am still here.

Las Vegas has been good to me, and I don’t know where else I would live if I chose to move.  I met my husband of 32 years here and now have my two kids and his.   We are blessed with four grandkids and they all live here.  The 7-11 that I worked at when I first moved here is now the entrance ramp from Jones to 95-North.  I spent a lot of time on Clarice Street, where the store was located.   I worked at the 7-11, then moved onto Rainbow Tax Service that was in the same plaza.  I hung out at the Trap House at the other end of the plaza.  Now they are all under the on ramp.

I have been a small business co-owner since 1988, with my husband.  I also started another business with a different partner in 2011.  That is what I love about Vegas.  I love the mindset of risk taking and entrepreneurship, along with the support of other business owners.  There is always a new venture, a new idea, a new community service in which to participate.

I have sat on different boards in the community and now sit on the Board of NAWIC – National Association of Women in Construction.  It has been a wild ride in the construction industry.   The strong and the smart have survived the ups and downs of this industry.  Construction and gaming were the two largest industries when I moved here.

Most “out of towners” think of Vegas as just the Strip, not realizing that it is like any other town in the U.S.   It just stays open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and has slot machines in almost every venue.  I have also heard “newbies” say that Vegas is not a friendly place.   I disagree.  The people in Vegas are as friendly to you as you are to them.

I love Vegas.  I started a Wild Ride in 1977 as a single mom of two and am now a wife of 32 years, a grandma, a community service participant, and co-owner in two businesses.  What else can you ask for!