“BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW” by Jackie Brett
LAS VEGAS ARENA GETS NEW NAME T-MOBILE ARENA: The Las Vegas Arena’s partners AEG and MGM Resorts Worldwide announced the new official name for the 20,000-seat sports and entertainment venue under construction will be T-Mobile Arena. Some already confirmed event dates include: opening night starring The Killers on April 6; UFC 200 in July; Harlem Globetrotters; George Strait; Garth Brooks; Dixie Chicks; Janet Jackson; UNLV/Duke college basketball; and the 2016 PBR World Finals.
NEW COMEDY ‘PUPPET UP! – UNCENSORED’ WILL OPEN AT VENETIAN: After performing around the country the original and unruly comedy production “Puppet Up! – Uncensored” will debut this spring at the Sands Showroom inside The Venetian®. The show is created by award-winning director, producer and writer Brian Henson, and actor, director and improvisational guru Patrick Bristow with credits such as “Ellen,” “Seinfeld” and “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” Six puppeteers will work more than 60 different puppets to bring to life twisted scenes. “Puppet Up! – Uncensored” was developed by Henson Alternative Productions, an arm of the Jim Henson Company that creates content exclusively for adult audiences.
HARVEST BY ROY ELLAMAR IS OPEN NOW AT BELLAGIO: Harvest by Roy Ellamar open nightly from 5 to 10 p.m. has made its debut in Bellagio’s Spa Tower showcasing New American cuisine and seasonal menus inspired by regional farms. For his first restaurant concept, Las Vegas’ own Chef Ellamar crafts creative market-driven dishes that celebrate regional produce. He focuses on sustainable, inventive dishes; farm-fresh cocktails; and rare craft beer and wine.
‘THE VOICE’ FINALIST BARRETT BABER WILL OPEN FOR RASCAL FLATTS: The season nine finalist of NBC’s “The Voice” Barrett Baber will join Rascal Flatts for their nine-show Rhythm & Roots residency at The Joint at Hard Rock from Feb. 17-March 5. Arkansas native Baber’s musical career eventually led him to winning CBS’s Grammy Gig of a Lifetime award in 2014. One year later, he auditioned for “The Voice” and landed on Blake Shelton’s team. Tickets start at $39.95.
PLAZA OPENS TWO NEW EXHIBITS INSIDE LAS VEGAS CLUB GALLERY: Late last year, the Plaza downtown opened a special gallery featuring sports themed items that once decorated the former Las Vegas Club. The Plaza is welcoming two new displays inside the Las Vegas Club Gallery. On Jan. 15, famed local artist Jerry Misko opened an exhibit of his edition prints and one-of-a-kind paintings of nostalgic Las Vegas neon signs. The native Las Vegan’s acclaimed, retro-meets-modern interpretations of classic Las Vegas icons are for sale. On Thursday, Feb. 4, the Museum of Gaming History (MOGH), a nonprofit, educational project of The Casino Chip & Gaming Token Collectors Club, Inc., will open its “Union Plaza Then and Now” free public exhibit with artifacts from when the hotel/casino first opened through the last five decades. The exhibit will have about 150-200 memorabilia items, a light box display of a rare slot glass collection, a wall of photographs spanning the Plaza’s history, and a 30-minute video.
STONED N BAKED IS NEW DINING CONCEPT AT CONTAINER PARK: Stoned n Baked has opened in Container Park on the second floor. The newest dining destination opens daily at 11 a.m. and serves handmade artisan pizzas including vegan and gluten-free options and a selection of baked goods. Stoned n Baked is presented by SasaSweets, the parent company of ChillSpot also located in Container Park. SasaSweets manufactures desserts for some of the city’s top restaurants, casinos and resorts.
LEPRE-CON 2016 WILL AIM FOR A GUINNESS WORLD RECORD: The St. Baldrick’s Foundation, the largest private funder of childhood cancer research grants, will hold the inaugural St. Baldrick’s Lepre-Con 2016 with the largest number of leprechauns in one place on Saturday, Feb. 13 at Town Square. The event presented by national hair care franchise Sport Clips Haircuts will try to set a record for the Guinness Book of World Records. The current record for the largest gathering of Leprechauns was set in Ireland in 2012 with 1,263 participants. All registered entrants who can run, walk or just take part of the leprechaun gathering will receive a leprechaun costume, including a hat, beard and t-shirt that they must wear to comply with the rules. The event will also include a 5k run/walk, a kid’s activity corner, live music and beer garden. This event will start the countdown to the numerous St. Baldrick’s head-shaving events that will take place locally in March. For information, visit Lepre-Con.org.
NEW TRAMPOLINE PARK WILL OPEN IN FEBRUARY: Rockin’ Jump Las Vegas, a jump experience that began with locations in California more than six years ago, will open its first franchise in Las Vegas at 7200 Montessouri Street in early February. This month the company is hiring employees. Founded in 2010, Rockin’ Jump is a family-owned company with 15 franchises. Locations feature a range of innovative trampoline equipment.
FUKU BURGER OPENS RESTAURANT IN CHINATOWN: Fuku Burger pronounced “foo-koo” is partnering with the owners of the Great American Foodie Fest and opening a new brick and mortar restaurant in Chinatown where their food truck was first established. The name is a combination of owner Colin Fukunaga’s last name and the word “Fuku” meaning “lucky” in Japanese. Opening daily at 11:30 a.m. Fuku Burger will offer six burgers with a Japanese twist along with other items such as the Naga Dog, the FukuMoco, Jazz Fries, Tagarashi Garlic Fries as well as beer and sake.
M83 WILL MAKE TOUR STOP AT BROOKLYN BOWL: M83, aka Anthony Gonzalez, on his North American tour will stop at Brooklyn Bowl at The Linq on Saturday, April 16 at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $35. His tour will include special performances at the Coachella festival in Indio, Calif., and The Governor’s Ball in New York. Following the success of his critically acclaimed album “Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming,” featuring platinum-selling single “Midnight City,” M83, who hails from Antibes, France, is on the verge of another epic full-length release..
THE COLOR RUN® WILL BRIGHTEN DOWNTOWN LAS VEGAS: The Color Run with its Tropicolor theme will take place downtown on Saturday, Feb, 27 at 8 a.m., with a portion of the proceeds benefiting Three Square Food Bank. Now in its fifth year, the “Happiest 5k on the Planet” continues to grow with the worldwide movement of the paint race genre. Runners, walkers or sprinters of all ages and athletic abilities will be bathed in a tropical array of colors and island scents. Upon finishing, runners will be able to let loose island-style during the Finish Festival featuring a massive color throw celebration, music, dancing and photo opportunities. A new participation kit offers island-inspired items such as a lei, snapback hat and sunglasses, t-shirt, headband, temporary tattoos and a medal. Runners can register on The Color Run’s website and purchase classic, classic plus or deluxe entries starting at $34.99 with options for little color runners.
ANNUAL LAPS FOR CHARITY FUNDRAISER MEANS DRIVING LVMS TRACK: The sixth annual Laps for Charity fundraising event to benefit the Las Vegas Chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities will take place at Las Vegas Motor Speedway (LVMS) on Sunday, Jan. 31 from 11 a.m.-7 p.m. For the second year in a row, participants will have the opportunity to drive the track under the superspeedway’s lights from 5-7 p.m. NASCAR fans and car enthusiasts will have the opportunity to drive their personal vehicles – car, truck or motorcycle – around the 1.5-mile superspeedway behind a pace car at speeds up to 75 miles per hour. This is the same track the superstars of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will race on in the Kobalt 400 on March 6. Laps for Charity is open to all licensed drivers 18 years of age and older. Entry fee is $35 per vehicle for three laps and three more laps are an additional $25. Driving under the lights is $45 for four laps and an additional $30 for more four laps. The event is first-come, first-served rain or shine. For information, call Paulette Anderson at 702-917-6493.
VEGAS MUSIC SUMMIT RETURNS DOWNTOWN FEB. 4 AND 5: The 2016 Vegas Music Summit (VMS) will be held Downtown on Thursday and Friday, Feb. 4 and 5. The annual music and media conference plus festival showcases prominent and emerging artists and provides a forum for major industry experts to share insights on a diverse range of topics in the music industry. The VMS industry panels on Feb. 4 and 5 will be held at the Downtown Grand.The conference features a live music showcase featuring GoldBoot, Brumby and Irontom at 8 p.m. on Feb. 4 at Backstage Bar & Billiards, 601 Fremont Street. This 21-plus event is free. Additional showcase information will be announced via social media and the website. Conference badges are $99, which includes access to conference panels, showcases and after parties, visit www.vegasmusicsummit.com. Discounted student/Industry badges are also available.
CHAZZ PALMINTERI WILL OPEN THE NIGHTCLUB & BAR SHOW: Chazz Palminteri, Academy Award nominated actor, screenwriter, producer and partner of BiVi Vodka will officially open the expo hall at the 2016 Nightclub & Bar Convention and Trade Show with a ribbon cutting on Tuesday, March 8 at noon. The convention returns for its 31st year March 7-9 at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Palminteri has launched one of the newest handcrafted vodka brands, BiVi Vodka. The name, BiVi, means “to drink” in Sicilian and will be the first vodka ever produced in Sicily and brought to America.
SOME QUICK NOTES: Internationally renowned restaurant, Mr. Chow, is open at Caesars Palace. The Las Vegas location makes the seventh for the luxurious Beijing cuisine eatery that originated in London. From Jan. 19 through March 27, BRIO Tuscan Grille (BRIO) at Town Square and Tivoli Village will offer two risotto dishes through its “Tale of Two Risottos” promotion. Both dishes, Lobster and Shrimp Risotto and Sea Scallops with Risotto, are available at lunch and dinner for $19.95. Superstars Luke Bryan and Dierks Bentley will co-host the 51st Academy Of Country Music Awards® that will return to Las Vegas and the MGM Grand Garden Arena with a live broadcast on Sunday, April 3 at 8 p.m. ET/delayed PT on the CBS Television Network. The show will mark reigning ACM Entertainer of the Year Luke Bryan’s fourth consecutive turn hosting and Bentley’s first time. Last week, local band JAMM began presenting an Old School Show on Friday nights in the Ravello Lounge at the M Resort. Doors open at 9 p.m. with DJ Arty on the turn tables and JAMM going on stage at 9:45 p.m. There is no cover charge with a two-drink minimum purchase. Reminder, “Rock of Ages” will be opening in its new home at the Rio on Monday, Jan. 25 at 7:30 p.m. The Artisan Craft Festival of Summerlin will be held in the Grand Ballroom at the Suncoast on Saturday, Jan. 31 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The event is free to attend. Former all-star athlete and media personality, Shaquille O’Neal, was recently spotted with a hard hat touring the construction grounds of the highly-anticipated Beer Park by Budweiser at Paris that will open later this month directly above HEXX kitchen | bar | chocolate. Last year, Blancpain debuted the Ocean Commitment Exhibition. Now, for the first time in North America, the exhibit will be open to the public in front of the Blancpain boutique at The Forum Shops at Caesars Palace from Jan. 26 until Feb. 8. Noted footwear designer Sam Edelman opened his fifth location at The Forum Shops at Caesars on the second level near the spiral escalator. It is his first and only namesake boutique to open in Las Vegas. The Vegas Shoot National Field Archery will return to the South Point Arena Jan. 29-31. Attracting novice to Olympic archers for the first leg of the 16th annual three-star tour, The Vegas Shoot is the most prestigious indoor archery tournament in the world. The competition includes the traditional 3-spot-20-yard “Vegas Round” and is expected to have more than 3,000 archers compete for $350,000 in cash and prizes. This event is free and open to the public.
NEON MUSEUM HOSTS TIMES OF THE SIGNS SCHOLAR STEFAN AL: On Tuesday, Feb. 2 at 7 p.m., the Neon Museum will welcome Time of the Signs Scholar-in-Residence Stefan Al, an internationally known Dutch architect, author and academic specializing in contemporary urbanization. His presentation entitled, “Bigger, Better and Brighter: The Evolution of Las Vegas Signs,” will be held at the Marjorie Barrick Museum Auditorium at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Admission is free with open seating.
DLVEC CONTINUES ALL-STAR EDM POP-UP PARTY SERIES WITH DJs: Downtown Las Vegas Events Center (DLVEC) is hosting EDM – Electronic Dance Music events as part of its anticipated “Winter Wonderland” Pop-Up Series. Upcoming acts include DJs Paris Blohm on Friday, Jan. 22 followed by Pauly D who is signed to music label G-Note owned by rap mogul 50 Cent on Saturday, Jan. 23. Tickets are $20.
SAPPHIRE’S FEATURES WEEKLY COMEDY SHOWS: AVN adult entertainment and Sapphire Comedy Hour will present Rebecca Bardoux’s “Carnal Comedy” on Jan. 21at Sapphire’s Gentlemen’s Club as an Official AVN 2016 Party. The super sexy comedy show featuring many of today’s top adult film star Hall of Famers and comedians will begin with a hosted open bar from 7:30 to 8 p.m. Sapphire Comedy Hour dedicates every Saturday night to featuring some of the country’s rising comedic stars and national touring and major headline comedians.