BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW
BY: Jackie Brett
NEW ATTRACTION WILL BE ‘FEAR THE WALKING DEAD: SURVIVAL’
Las Vegas leaves no stone unturned. The new planned attraction for the Fremont Street Experience inspired by the hit AMC series is “Fear the Walking Dead: Survival” scheduled to open this summer and to appeal to thrill seekers and zombie followers. It’s purported the multisensory experience will combine a thrill ride, escape room, maze, and interactive gaming, set against the horrors of a zombie apocalypse. There will be elaborate sets, all-encompassing audio and video, and high-tech motion simulator technology.
Guests will be greeted with entry into the setting of a temporary military facility set inside a junior college amidst rumors of a zombie outbreak. Visitors will use their survival skills to fight off never-ending zombies. The attraction is in partnership with Canadian company Triotech, a leader in creating high profile, technologically advanced interactive media-based award-winning attractions.
DOWNTOWN GRAND LAUNCHES ‘THIRD THURSDAY ON 3rd’
The Downtown Grand is going to start “Third Thursday on 3rd” street festival between Ogden and Stewart on July 20 from 7–10 p.m. The road side affair will feature five gourmet food trucks — Truk-N-Yaki, Stripchezze, The Cookie Bar, Cousins Maine Lobster and Waffle Love, a live street art battle from Secret Walls plus games, give-a-ways, a DJ and more. Secret Walls will make their debut performance at the Downtown Grand with a street battle resulting in each artist’s work being installed on the property’s 3rd Street entrance. The evening’s main attraction will be a 90-minute creative clash under the street lights between two Secret Walls artists vying for expressive domination.
MAGICIAN MAT FRANCO HAS LINQ SHOWROOM NAMED AFTER HIM
Nearing the second anniversary of his first headlining production, magician Mat Franco has been honored at The LINQ Hotel with his namesake marquee, Mat Franco Theater. Franco opened at the resort after his triumphant win on “America’s Got Talent” and his follow up primetime special, “Mat Franco’s Got Magic” on NBC in 2015. His success earned him this recognition.
PING PANG PONG EXPANDS AND DEBUTS NEW SPACE AT GOLD COAST
Chinese restaurant Ping Pang Pong at the Gold Coast, which debuted in 2001, revealed its redesigned and 50-percent larger expanded space where the showroom once resided with a ribbon cutting and exhilarating Lion Dance. The new space can seat 300 and a private banquet room can accommodate nearly 100 guests. The entry portal is flanked by two authentic foo dog sculptures acquired direct from China. The reception area has a host station designed to resemble a Chinese apothecary cabinet and overhead are silk lanterns festooned with red tassels. The menu and dining experience remains unchanged. Dim sum service is available from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily, with pushcarts offering a selection of more than 80 authentic dishes from provinces throughout China.
DOWNTOWN OFFERS FREE LOOP SHUTTLE SERVICE
The city of Las Vegas started a free six-month pilot shuttle service program, dubbed the Downtown Loop, running daily and stopping at seven downtown spots: Bonneville Transit Center; The Arts District; Pawn Plaza; Fremont East Entertainment District; Mob Museum; Fremont Street Experience; and Las Vegas North Premium Outlets. The Loop runs 11:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 3 p.m. to midnight, Friday and Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday.
COMEDY-MAGICIAN ADAM LONDON INTRODUCES PRESTO MAGIC TICKET
After almost five years headlining at the D downtown, whimsical magician Adam London will now teach magic tricks to audience members opting for a new ticketing option…Presto Magic. This deal allows magic-lovers the opportunity to arrive at the theatre an hour early to learn up to three beginner-level tricks and to participate in a Q&A with London. Presto Magic tickets are $49.95++ and include a rubber duck, a commemorative photo and first seating at “Adam London’s Laughternoon” show. In addition, London partners with Anderson Dairy every summer to give a complimentary scoop of ice cream to all audience members through Labor Day to celebrate National Ice Cream Month, which is July.
LIP SMACKING FOODIE TOURS ADDS VENETIAN|PALAZZO EXPERIENCES
Lip Smacking Foodie Tours has announced two new tours to “Taste the Town” —Vegas Sights Worldly Bites and Bright Lights and Lip Smacking Bites. Vegas Sights Worldly Bites offers a stroll of eating and exploring around The Venetian|Palazzo. The two-and-a-half hour experience leads guests on a tour past dramatic fountains, glitzy venues and pedestrian shopping promenades and to partake of signature menu items at the following resort restaurants: SUGARCANE raw bar grill; Chica; SUSHISAMBA; and Bouchon. The other new tour is Bright Lights & Lip Smacking Bites, which is a partnership with Pink Jeep Tours. The five-hour experience starts with the full, four-stop dining experience of The Venetian|Palazzo and combines a tour of the city’s popular sights aboard a signature open-air Pink Jeep Wrangler. The two new experiences join Lip Smacking Foodie Tours’ five signature tours: Afternoon Culinary Adventures; Savors of The Strip; Downtown Lip Smacking Tour; Savory Bites & Neon Lights; and Lip Smacking Boozy Brunch.
DJ KRISTIAN NAIRN WILL TAKE OVER THE POOL AT THE LINQ
Best known for his acting role as Hodor on the hit series, “Game of Thrones,” Kristian Nairn will make his Las Vegas pool party DJ debut at The Pool at The LINQ on Sunday, July 23. Not well known is Nairn has been DJ’ing and making music for more than 20 years, performing alongside artists such as Scissor Sisters, Calvin Harris, Mylo, and Alphabeat. As a DJ and electronic music producer, he held down a residency for 11 years in Kremlin, one of Ireland’s most popular and enduring venues. Nairn will be in the house from 1 to 3 p.m. with a set performance at the center stage.
‘THE DREAM AWARDS’ WILL HONOR VEGAS ENTERTAINMENT LEGENDS
Got a really pleasant surprise when I learned one of my favorite entertainers, Loretta Holloway, who moved away from Las Vegas years ago, would be among a fabulous lineup of performers for The Dream Awards honoring talent who helped make Las Vegas the “Entertainment Capital of the World.” The event will be held on Sunday, Oct. 22 in the Suncoast Showroom at 7 p.m. Tickets range from $29-$50 and are available now at Ticketmaster. It will be good to hear her sing again. Other noteworthy artists being recognized on Oct. 22 include: Earl Turner, Darcus, Sonny Turner, Janis Carter, Sonny Charles (The Checkmates), Dondino, Freddie Empire, Jeneane Marie, Gregg Austin & Second Wind, Next Movement, Copeland Davis. In addition, the Visionary Award will go to Las Vegas entertainment director Kathie Spehar and Lifetime Achievement Award to Lamonte McLemore (The 5th Dimension).
Every week celebrities are in town for any number of reasons. Most recently comedian-actor Kevin Hart made a special appearance at the Hard Rock Hotel for his weekend birthday celebration at Vanity Nightclub and at the Rehab Beach Club where rapper and hip hop artist, Fabolous, also partied. Hart hosted a book signing for his new memoir, “I Can’t Make This Up: Life Lessons,” before his nightclub appearance. Multi-faceted and talented Nick Cannon, host of “Wild ‘N Out,” made a recent appearance at Sugar Factory American Brasserie at the Fashion Show mall to promote an upcoming collaboration on Theatre Box®, opening in San Diego in spring 2018. Interesting that the announcement was made in Las Vegas for San Diego’s first IMAX theatre, a 70,000-square-foot entertainment complex with eight luxury theatres and 700 seats combined located in the Gaslamp District. This month pint-size actor and dancer Miles “Baby Boogaloo” Brown, widely known for his role as “Jack Johnson” on ABC’s “Black-ish,” attended magician Mat Franco’s show at The LINQ and was called onstage to assist with one of Franco’s signature tricks.
ABOUT TOWN QUICK CLIPS
In Las Vegas we usually think about resorts being bought and sold, but this time global juggernaut Cirque du Soleil bought the famous non-verbal Blue Man Group. The aim will be to expand Blue Man’s reach beyond its five permanent shows in the United States with a world tour and one permanent international show. The upcoming lineup for the South Point Showroom will include: Tony Orlando “knocking three times” July 21-23; comedian Dat Phan on Friday, July 28 at 7:30 p.m.; and the Mrs. Vietnam World Pageant July 29-30 at 4 p.m. For the pageant, tickets start at $20 on Saturday and $50 on Sunday. Columbia Records recording artist Bryshere Gray (aka Yazz “The Greatest”), who stars as Hakeem Lyon in the FOX television show “Empire” will appear at the Flamingo Go Pool’s Daybeats on Saturday, July 29. Now in its fourth year, the RiSE Lantern Festival is a two-day festival taking place at the Moapa River Reservation, 35 miles outside of Las Vegas, scheduled in October. Already day two is sold out and a limited number of tickets remain for Friday, Oct. 6… adults $109-$129; children 3-10, $69. Shake Shack opened its fourth Southern Nevada location in Henderson at The District at Green Valley Ranch. Upcoming comedians at Bonkerz Comedy in the Addison’s Lounge at the Rampart Casino at JW Marriott include Tobe Hixx on Thursday, July 20 followed on July 27 by Bobby Wayne Stauts. Shows start at 7 p.m. and entrance is free. Las Vegas Soccer LLC is on the City Council Meeting agenda for Wednesday, July 19 to bring a professional soccer team to Las Vegas. Next week, the Las Vegas City Council will vote to approve a stadium lease agreement for a United Soccer League (USL) expansion team to begin play during the 2018 season at Cashman Field. Move over Denver, Las Vegas is now all about the cannabis. The Vegas Cannabis Summit will be held downtown on Friday-Saturday, July 28-29. Conference speakers will be presenting at 601 Fremont Street. Tickets are $149 in advance, $169 day of show; must be 21. Dress for Success Southern Nevada will host its annual fundraising Power Walk at Miracle Miles Shops inside Planet Hollywood featuring the theme “One Mile in Style,” on Saturday, July 29 at 8 a.m. Stores open at 10 a.m. and many will offer special discounts to participants. Registration online is $28 adult, $20 student with valid ID, and $10 child. The Springs Preserve, which is turning 10 this year, is holding a photo contest split into two divisions, adult age 18+ and youth 11-17, through Sept. 8. The contest theme is focusing your lens on the number 10. For example, life through the eyes of a 10-year old, items in groupings of 10, etc. Cash prizes will be awarded for each division and winners’ images will be on display in the Big Springs Gallery Oct. 19-Jan. 7, 2018. The entry fee is $5 per photograph. MTV “Teen Mom” reality star and entrepreneur, Farrah Abraham, will celebrate the party launch of gentlemen’s club Crazy Horse III’s VIP Back Door Key Membership on Friday, Aug. 4.
ENJOY A DAY ON LAKE MEAD WITH A PATIO PONTOON PACKAGE
A perfect getaway from the Strip can be a full-day visit on Lake Mead with a Patio Pontoon Package. The experience departs from Callville Bay Resort and Marina and includes: a full day on the lake aboard the pontoon boat — think of it as a private, floating cabana, roundtrip transfers from the Las Vegas Strip for up to 12 passengers, fuel, ice, lunch and bottled water for $1,414.
Each patio pontoon comes equipped with a wet bar, a 360-foot top-level sundeck and waterslide, barbecue grill and wet bar, and bathroom. Guests receive orientation at the marina on how to pilot the boats then staff helps them navigate out of the marina and onto the open lake.
GRAND CANYON SCENIC AIRLINES LAUNCHES NEW ARIZONA TOUR
On Aug. 1, Grand Canyon Scenic Airlines (GCSA), which is celebrating its 90th anniversary in 2017, will launch a new Antelope Canyon Expedition year-round tour featuring views of Las Vegas and Page, Ariz. GCSA will become the only flightseeing operator to serve Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend from Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon. The approximately 11-hour tour begins by checking into the Grand Canyon Scenic Airlines Terminal in Boulder City. The price is $3,500 for the Cessna Caravan seating up to nine passengers. The Twin Otter/Vistaliner, which seats up to 16 passengers, is $6,000.
Emeril’s New Orleans Fish House in the MGM Grand has launched a new four-course summer tasting menu for $48 showcasing the restaurant’s signature and new dishes featuring seasonal ingredients. This menu is available during dinner service from 4-10 p.m. with wine pairings starting at $30. For the fourth consecutive year, Tuscany Gardens inside Tuscany Suites along with 27 other restaurants in Las Vegas has been awarded the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence for having “one of the most outstanding restaurant wine lists in the world.” The recognition praises wine lists offering at least 90 selections. Therapy, the American, gastro-style pub on Fremont Street, has added several new menu items for lunch and dinner including: heirloom tomato and burrata salad; grilled octopus with crispy chorizo, chickpea and lemon; roasted 10 oz. chicken breast; Korean BBQ pork belly; and sliced chimichurri steak. Bazaar Meat by José Andrés at SLS has introduced several new summer cocktails to the menu, with a whimsical twist on summer favorites like spiked punches and lemonades.
RESTAURANTS HONORING NATIONAL DAYS
While National Ice Cream Day was July 15, National Ice Cream Month is being observed at Max’s Restaurant, Cuisine of the Philippines on East Flamingo with a traditional Filipino favorite, Halo-Halo (translation “mix-mix”) offer through July 31. Available for dine-in or to go, customers can purchase two Halo-Halos at $5.99 each and get one free. The treat combines ube (purple yam) ice cream, caramel flan, preserved tropical fruits, toasted rice flakes in shaved ice and milk. National Hot Dog Day is July 19 but at B&B Burger & Beer at The Venetian, they are celebrating the entire month with the Allen Brothers Certified Angus Beef Hot Dog for $12. For National Sandwich Month in August, The Turkey Club sandwich is $14. Cabo Wabo Cantina the week of Monday, July 24 to Friday, July 28, will recognize National Tequila Day with a week of 50 percent off of select Blanco tequila shots, including Cabo Wabo, Espolon, Herradura and Exotico. SLS will acknowledge National Tequila Day on Monday, July 24 from 5-10 p.m. with a $25 “cocktail passport” redeemable for three signature tequila drinks available at Monkey Bar, Katsuya and Umami Burger, Beer Garden & Sports Book. Passport holders may also have a 25 percent dining discount at Umami Burger, Katsuya or Northside Café & Chinese Kitchen at the same time frame. On Wednesday, July 26, BRAVO! Cucina Italiana will honor National Lasagna Day with 50 percent off the Mama’s Lasagna Bolognese. Sister eateries BRIO Tuscan Grille at Tivoli Village and Town Square will celebrate National Lasagna Day on Thursday, July 27 with 50 percent off of Mama’s Lasagna Bolognese. Honoring National Lasagna Day on Saturday, July 29, The Bootlegger Italian Bistro’s special will be a free dessert while experiencing Mama Maria’s classic baked lasagna, a 65-year-old recipe made by the owner’s mother, or vegetarian lasagna with Alfredo sauce.