Thursday was a day for gold and gambling!
We took a tour of the Phoenix Mine, near Idaho Springs. I found the tour very interesting, and I was impressed by how far into the mine they allowed us to go. After the tour, they gave us a brief gold panning lesson, and then they set us loose to try our hand at panning in their stream. We had a lovely time by the creek, but we didn't find any treasures. I'm convinced Mom could have stayed there all day long!
But, we had more treasure seeking ahead of us, so we had to continue on with the day. We arrived in Central City and headed to the casino which promised a free buffet to new players (assuming you racked up enough credits...). Dale hit the blackjack table and Mom and I settled in at some penny slots. We were perfectly content risking just a few cents at a time. After a while, she and I took a break from the gambling and walked around the town. It is amazing how long some of those buildings have been there. It was fun to look into the storefronts and read the historical markers in town. Central City was a booming town during the gold rush. It's amazing to see how the houses are built right into the slope of the hills. It was really enjoyable to wander around and take in the feel of the town.
Mom and I returned to the casino to find Dale. Our penny slots had paid off some. By dinnertime, she and I both tripled the money we put in. We were nowhere close to earning the free buffet credits, though. Dale did win his dinner, though! We ate, and ate, and ate some more. Let's just say we definitely got our money's worth out of that buffet. Mom and I put a little more money into the penny slots, and still ended the day ahead.
While the day paid off only meager monetary earnings, our time seeking gold and casino winnings was well worth it in terms of entertainment and enjoyment.