By Amanda Youngblood
Sparkill, NY – People from across the country have different ways of celebrating their birthdays. When it comes to their 21st birthday, many people plan to have a big party. For John Capozzi, a student at St. Thomas Aquinas College, he decided to go to Las Vegas, Nevada for his 21st birthday this past August for a week. He knew this place had all the elements he was looking for – a crazy night life, public drinking, and free taxi rides to the hotel if he was too intoxicated and did not have enough money.
Capozzi decided to bring three of his closest friends from back home, Phil, Brett, and Andrew to Las Vegas. He was able to pay for the trip with the help of his parents and the money he saved into his vacation fund. However, before the partying could ensue, Capozzi and his friends had to sit on a Delta plane for two hours in New York. After the wait, the men were in Minnesota waiting for their connecting. Unfortunately, the flight was postpones due to poor weather. As a result, the four friends were given cots by the employees and had to sleep on the floor in an airport in Minnesota. By seven in the morning, a plane was ready to take them to their destination and within three hours they were in the “City of Lost Wages.”
The men stayed at the New York New York hotel because Capozzi “didn’t want to be too far from home,” he said, “plus, they [had] a rollercoaster and a coyote ugly bar.” After checking in, they prepared for their first night in Vegas. Wanting to look like VIPs, they went to the clubs dressed in suits. Capozzi said he and his friends spent up to $300 each on alcohol for themselves and other club goers. The next morning, he woke up still in his suit, but in another person’s room. When asked if he knew the people from last night, Capozzi laughed and said, “No, I just woke up and told the people I would see them later.”
After meeting up with his friends in the room he paid for, they decided to utilize two things that Vegas is known for, alcohol and gambling. Before the group of friends left their hotel room, they decided to have a few drinks. When they arrived at the casino, they sat at a Black Jack table where Capozzi taunted the dealer throughout a couple of games. Fortunately, the dealer did not feel the need to remove him from the table, unlike a manager who Capozzi later entered on his trip. “We were drinking the whole day before we went to an all-you-can-eat buffet for dinner,” Capozzi recaps. When they arrived for dinner, one of his friends dropped a plate of food, which upset an employee. When the manager was informed, he told the group of men to leave the restaurant because he said they were drunk and disorderly.
Nights of clubbing and gambling continued until the last day. Before the plane ride home, Capozzi and his friends decided to go sight-seeing. They thought it would be a good idea to take in the sights of Las Vegas during the day while not under the influence. Capozzi told the paper that the flight back home to New York on American Airlines was better than the flight to Nevada. No bad weather provided them from catching their connecting flight. When asked if there was something special he took back home with him, Capozzi said, “I invented a new drink, but I don’t want to tell anyone about it yet until I get it patented.”
Capozzi is looking forward to his next trip back to Las Vegas for another week of intense partying and a memorable time with his friends celebrating their birthdays.