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Desert Companion

Give the gift of culture

Keeps on giving

Gift of culture

Some of the best gifts can’t be wrapped

We’ve all had the joy of shopping for a kvetcher moaning about the wasteful nature of human beings, the coming apocalypse courtesy of peak oil and the moral outrage of importing plastic goods from China. As for that purist who eschews the notion of all material goods, consider the gift not of a thing, but of an experience.

Insurgo Theater (www.insurgotheater.org): There’s something incredibly Vegas about watching “Waiting for Godot” in the midst of The Plaza Hotel, and Insurgo is where it all happens. Complement your tickets with some vintage duds from The Gypsy Den (www.thegypsyden.tumblr.com) and dinner at Bar+Bistro (www.barbistroaf.com).

Modern Council: A piddling $250 ($400 for couples) annual membership is the price of admission to exclusive monthly events run by The Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art. Hang with the artistically educated — and feel good about it, because 20 percent of your membership fee goes toward economically disadvantaged schools. Email '; // --> for more information.

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The Erotic Heritage Museum (www.eroticheritagemuseumlasvegas.com): The provocateur needs a place to call home, and where else but one adorned with a five-foot guess-what. Attendees are encouraged to leave their “mark” in the bathroom — think artistic. Memberships start at $50.

Dig This (www.digthis.info): For the ultimate testosterone high, you need seriously heavy equipment, and at Dig This, anyone can master their own life-size Tonka trucks, driving real Caterpillar bulldozers and excavators. Dig ditches, lift and crush boulders, and bury … well, we’ll leave that to your imagination. The “Dig & Destroy” package lets you combine the awesomeness of excavation with the Rambo-ness of shooting fully automatic submachine and machine guns. Prices for bulldozing and excavating start at $210 for 90 minutes.

Theater 7 (www.theatre7lv.com): Step into the underground world of film at Theater 7. Kinky, visceral and even a little grind (house, that is), Theater 7 serves up film festivals at wallet-friendly prices that challenge the cerebrum.

Bricks 4 Kidz (www.bricks4kidz.com): Parents raising the next generation of mad scientists poised to take over the world via a robotics revolution should take note of Bricks 4 Kidz’s Advanced LEGO classes. Doubles as a perfect way to bring that gamer out of his or her command center.

Or how about changing the world? At www.kiva.org, a gift is not a gift, but a microloan that will fund an entrepreneur in a developing nation. Once the loan has been repaid, the original capital is upcycled into another venture of your own choosing. Now there’s a gift that keeps on giving.

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