Have you heard about the infestation of grasshoppers in downtown Las Vegas?

It started about two weeks ago and it’s not supposed to end for about another two weeks.

If you are thinking of visiting downtown or The Strip soon, you’d better wait. The national news has carried video about the invasion of Las Vegas by Mexican grasshoppers.

We haven’t seen anything out of the ordinary where we live in the southwest part of town. But those parts of town where all of the tourists go are plagued by literally thousands of grasshoppers. The problem occurs periodically. The local newspaper reported it has happened four times in the last 20 years. A warm winter and mild spring have been blamed.

One enterprising business person has taken advantage of the situation by offering grasshopper pizza. The establishment is called Evel Pizza, (as in Evel Kneivel), located on Fremont Street, which happens to be one of the areas most affected by the harmless, yet annoying, creatures when they fly in and out of the storefronts by the thousands.

The cost of a slice of grasshopper pizza is $5.50. The ingredients are goat cheese, chorizo, arugula and, of course, fried and seasoned grasshoppers. The Las Vegas newspaper recently ran a front page story and five-column photo of the pizza.

How was that for free publicity?

Not to be outdone, the owner of The Smashed Pig, a bar across the street from Evel Pizza, has added a new item for his “hoppy hour.” Actually they recreated a once popular drink called, the Grasshopper. It is a blend of creme de cacao, creme de menthe and half and half.

Both businesses said they would run the specials until the grasshoppers are gone.

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Any of you who make frequent trips between Phoenix and Las Vegas, as we do, will be glad to know some progress is finally being made on what will be Interstate 11. It now runs from the Henderson Spaghetti Bowl to the O’Callaghan-Tillman Memorial Bridge near Hoover Dam. It was a joint effort between the Nevada Department of Transportation and the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada.

Arizona officials are studying three possible routes for a 280-mile highway that would run from Nogales, Arizona near the Mexico border up to Wickenburg. From there, it would link up with Highway 93. It would be the first section of a much larger interstate plan that could potentially open a north-south trade route. It would be a vital and quicker link between Las Vegas and Phoenix, the two largest cities in the U.S. not currently connected by an interstate.

Plans for Arizona’s participation in the major project are still tentative. The possible cost has yet to be determined.

Meanwhile, the cities of Las Vegas and Henderson are booming.

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Well, Diane and I will be busy the next three weeks. We have the four New Jersey grandkids visiting us. Our agenda is filled with playing board and card games, video games and plenty of time at the big community pool and water park.

It’s all our Las Vegas grandson, Camden, has talked about for the last month. “My cousins are coming,” he has told me every day when we picked him up from preschool.

I hope he’s as enthusiastic about their visit at the end of the three weeks.