When most people think of Nevada they think of Las Vegas and gambling. This is certainly a hot spot of the state, but there is also a lot of beautiful land and interesting history.
Most people think of California as being the state with the most gold, but it is actually Nevada. And it was the discovery of silver in 1859 that caused a rush to the state and started growing the population.
The word Nevada means snow capped in Spanish and while most of the state is very dry and desert like there is a mountain range called the Sierra Nevada which does get some snow during about half of the year.
Nevada is the only state that has legalized prostitution in the United States. For it to be legal however, it has to take place in regulated brothels and be in cities with a population under 400,000. So while there is a ton of prostitution taking place in Las Vegas and Reno, it is actually illegal in those circumstances.
The state is much more relaxed about drinking alcohol than any other state as well. The state allows for the 24 hour selling and purchasing of alcohol, and it also prohibits any laws from making public intoxication an offense. People who have been to Las Vegas might notice that it is perfectly allowed to walk around with an alcoholic drink, where as everywhere else you have to be in designated areas.
The first casino was opened in Nevada in 1906, and today the town has more hotel rooms than any other town on earth. In 1999 the town has one slot machine for every ten residents, which means that there are a ton of slot machines.
Nevada is actually the driest state in the country, getting less than ten inches of rain each year. Most of that open desert land in Nevada is owned by the government, in fact 86 percent of it is. Many nuclear tests are done in that open land.
The Hoover Dam is an interesting attraction in the state, where it is located on the border of Nevada and Arizona. The idea for the dam came about in the year 1900 but it didn’t get authorized until 1928. They started building the dam in 1931 and completed in 1935. Hoover Dam was not its original name however, the dam was first called the Boulder Dam and was changed to Hoover after president Herbert Hoover in 1937.
The popular slogan of Las Vegas “what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” has been used in a few different formats over the years. The first time it was used was in ad campaigns for the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority in December 2002. They originally bought the trademark to the slogan for only $1, and it seems to be doing pretty good for the state.
Another fun fact about Las Vegas is that the city eats more shrimp than anywhere else in the country combined, more than 60,000 pounds. Must be all those tempting all you can eat buffets.