BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW
Contributed by: Jackie Brett
DOWNTOWN GRAND REACHES MILESTONE WITH THIRD TOWER: The Downtown Grand Hotel & Casino 13 months after breaking ground has topped out on its expansive, third hotel tower. The announcement comes in conjunction with newly released room renderings highlighting the design of the studio king and one-bedroom suite offerings. The new seven-floor tower is on track to begin booking the new 495 rooms this spring for stays starting in September 2020. The resort’s existing inventory is 629 rooms. To accommodate the additional rooms, the property has also begun work on expanding the footprint of its current fitness center in the existing casino tower to more than 1,500 square feet. The third tower will redefine the intersection of 4th and Ogden with clean-lines, contemporary architecture and modern suites.
MORRISSEY SCHEDULES FIVE-NIGHT RESIDENCY AT CAESARS PALACE: Morrissey will headline “Morrissey: Viva Moz Vegas” at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace for five nights with 8:30 p.m. shows this summer: June 26-27 and July 1, 3-4. General tickets begin at $59. Morrissey’s Vegas dates, his latest stateside shows after a string of acclaimed tour dates with alt-rock icons Interpol last fall, comes on the heels of the announcement of his 13th solo album and third studio album for BMG, defiantly titled “I Am Not A Dog on a Chain,” set to be released March 20. Morrissey’s headlining gig at Caesars will serve as an intimate, invigorating dive into his expansive career from his early days to the new album.
JABBAWOCKEEZ ‘TIMELESS’ PRODUCTION PREMIERES AT MGM GRAND: Jabbawockeez, “America’s Best Dance Crew,” will debut their newest Las Vegas engagement “Timeless” on Friday, March 6 in the refreshed Jabbawockeez Theater at MGM Grand. The world-famous dance crew will step into the new decade with a show focusing on original and innovative choreography and synchronized dance moves set to heart-pounding music. Performances will be Thursday-Monday at 7 p.m. and 9:30 Thursday-Saturday. Beginning Wednesday, April 1, “Timeless” will be performed nightly. Tickets start at $49.99. This year marks Jabbawockeez’s 10th anniversary of their latest Las Vegas residency and a decade of creative performances and collaborations. The debut of “Timeless,” the group’s fourth stage production, commemorates a relationship with MGM Resorts which began in 2010 with “MÜS. I.C.” at MGM Grand and Monte Carlo, followed by “Prism” at Luxor, and “Jreamz” at MGM Grand. Jabbawockeez’s first national television appearance was on “America’s Got Talent” in 2006 and they won on MTV’s “Randy Jackson Presents America’s Best Dance Crew” in March 2008, The troupe has stayed on the pulse of pop culture including a recent appearance on NBC’s “Saturday Night Live.”
‘FRIENDS! THE MUSICAL PARODY’ MOVES TO PARIS: The hit show “FRIENDS! The Musical Parody” moves to the Strip opening at Paris on Monday, March 9 with performances Friday-Wednesday in the Anthony Cools Showroom at 7 p.m. with added matinees at 3 p.m. on March 14, 21 and 28, April 4 and 11. Tickets start at $52.27 and for matinees $46.82. After a successful run Downtown, “FRIENDS!” was one of the shows displaced by a remodel which included closing the showroom at the D resort. The show is a musical which lovingly lampoons TV’s Friends celebrating and poking fun at the misadventures of a group of 20-something pals as they navigate the pitfalls of work, life and love in 1990s Manhattan. No question the Friends fan base continues to be enthusiastic and loyal.
MINUS5º ICE EXPERIENCE AT VENETIAN UNDERGOES COMPLETE REMODEL: Ice renovation of the Minus5° Ice Experience, made entirely of ice at Grand Canal Shoppes at The Venetian Resort, has begun a complete redesign which will be completed on March 6. When nearly 100 tons of ice shipped from Canada and Minnesota arrive, 12 professional ice carvers will work around-the-clock to construct the ice bar and create stunning sculptures to fill the 1,000-square-foot space. New highlights will include a Venetian architecture-inspired bar with large ice columns, a magical ice forest, and poolside daybed cabana. Fun facts…each ice block weighs 250 pounds, requiring four men to lift and hoist them into place. Prior to arriving in Las Vegas, the ice is created by utilizing a special process that removes all air bubbles, resulting in the clearest ice possible. Hours when Minus5° Ice Experience reopens will be daily from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.
PLAZA LAUNCHES PODCAST, ‘ON THE CORNER OF MAIN STREET’: The Plaza Hotel & Casino downtown on Feb. 19 launched “On the Corner of Main Street,” a new weekly podcast offering listeners an inside scoop on events, gaming developments, and people making downtown Las Vegas an amazing fast-growing destination. The initial 12-episode series is available on the Plaza’s website as well as on Spotify and the Apple Podcast App, airing weekly on Wednesdays. On the podcast, Plaza CEO Jonathan Jossel is joined by special guests, including entertainers, gaming industry leaders, local officials and partners. Some special guests will include downtown developer Sam Cherry; former mob attorney and Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman; the Plaza’s bingo manager, Weldon Russell; and William Hill US CEO Joe Asher.
MUSIC ICON ARTIE BUTLER SHARES LIFE STORY AT SMITH CENTER: Artie Butler, a celebrated composer, arranger, songwriter, music director and record producer, will appear live in concert at Myron’s Cabaret Jazz at The Smith Center with two special performances Sunday, March 1 at 3 and 7 p.m. Tickets range from $39 to $59. Butler will take his audience on a five-decade journey through the hits that shaped his career as one of the most respected arrangers and composers in the music business. Butler has arranged more than 75 hit records, played on hundreds of other recordings and been awarded more than 60 gold and platinum albums. His arrangement and featured piano work on the hit record “Feelin’ Alright” by Joe Cocker remain a true classic in American pop music. Butler received a Grammy nomination for his arrangement of “I Know I’ll Never Love This Way Again” for Dionne Warwick and is a three-time Emmy nominee. He traveled as arranger and musical conductor for Neil Sedaka, Peggy Lee and Joe Williams. He also conducted at the White House for presidents Richard Nixon, Jimmy Carter and George H. Bush as well as for the Royal Family in London with Peggy Lee. One of the most prolific people in the music business, Artie has scored numerous TV films and series, radio and TV commercials and has been musical director for many TV specials and mega events.
GORDON RAMSAY SURPRISED ONE MILLIONTH GUESTS AT HELL’S KITCHEN: Last weekend, Gordon Ramsay Hell’s Kitchen at Caesars Palace reached another milestone when Chef Gordon Ramsay welcomed and surprised the restaurant’s one millionth guests, Gema and Darryl Beck, from El Dorado Hills, Calif., presenting them with a celebratory Beef Wellington and champagne toast. The special commemorative Beef Wellington was so large it was brought out on a trolley and flanked with butter-poached lobster, foie gras and shaved black truffle. In addition, the Becks received an exclusive gift bag with branded merchandise and personally signed chef coats. Since opening in January 2018, Hell’s Kitchen has served more than 307,376 Beef Wellingtons; 183,449 Pan Seared Scallops; 160,838 orders of Lobster Risotto; 311,262 Sticky Toffee Puddings; and 51,848 Notes from Gordon cocktails.
COUNTRY MUSIC ARTIST CHASE BRYANT HEADLINES AT ALIANTE: Celebrated guitar player Chase Bryant will appear at Aliante in the Access Showroom on Friday, March 13 at 9 p.m. Tickets start at $25. Bryant burst into the country music scene with his guitar-wielding debut single “Take It on Back,” which reached the Top-10 of the Country Billboard Chart. Inspired by his family’s musical background, Bryant taught himself to play guitar at the age of three. As he rose to fame, he worked on several tours, including Tim McGraw’s Shotgun Rider Tour, Brantley Gilbert’s Let It Ride Tour, Kip Moore’s 2016 Wild Ones Tour and Brad Paisley’s Weekend Warrior Tour.
MINT 400 OFFERS COMMEMORATIVE ART AND DECANTERS: With NASCAR weekend over, the next focus for race fans can be the Mint 400 known as “The Great American Off-Road Race™.” Part of the race is captured in memorabilia like the Mint 400 Decanters and Stefan Marjoram’s The Art of War Exhibit. Mint 400 Decanters will be sold at all El Cortez bars during the Off-Road Festival Thursday-Friday, March 5 and 6. The 2020 Mint 400 Decanter is filled with City Lights Shine Whiskey Moonshine and pays respect to the three time and 2019 Overall Champion Justin Lofton on the front and includes every two and four wheel Mint 400 Overall Champion since the inaugural 1968 race on the side. Each banded racer will receive a bottle as part of their entry. In 2018, The Mint 400 and City Lights Shine brought back the decanter for its 50th Anniversary. The art of Stefen Marjoram will have 12 new pieces displayed and sold on Fremont Street during the Off-Road Festival on Thursday-Friday, March 5 and 6. Marjoram will also be onsite to sketch the sights of The Mint 400, creating new pieces of digital content while the event unfolds. The prints are printed on fine art archival museum quality papers with light fast aqueous pigment inks and embossed with The Mint 400 seal. All prints come with an official letter of authenticity.
SILENT DISCO SUNDAY SERIES RETURNS TO CONTAINER PARK: Silent Disco Sundays in partnership with Quiet Events returns to Downtown Container Park on Sunday, March 1, and will continue every first and third Sunday from 5-9 p.m. The regular all-ages silent disco dance parties feature rotating and battling DJs, drink specials and more. At this event music lovers dance to the beat of their own headphones. For $5 per headset, listeners can muse over the electronic waves delivering all genres of music. Attendees can move with the masses or sway to the melody of solitude, guided by the corresponding colors of each guest’s headphones. The first 50 guests to RSVP to Container Park’s ‘Silent Disco Sunday’ will receive complimentary headphones. Guests attending are required to present a credit card upon entry for headphone rental.
MARQUEE DAYCLUB OPENS WITH BEATWAVE MUSIC SERIES RETURNING: Marquee Dayclub at The Cosmopolitan will open on weekends only starting Friday, March 6. The official grand opening weekend will kick off with Cheat Codes on Friday, March 20 and Mustard on Saturday, March 21, followed by the fourth season launch of the Beatwave Music Series with Robin Schulz on Sunday, March 22. A full season of pool parties hosted by the world’s most influential DJs will follow.
LACE UP FOR AFAN’S 30TH ANNUAL AIDS WALK: Aid for AIDS of Nevada’s (AFAN) will hold its 30th annual AIDS Walk Las Vegas on Sunday, March 22 from 7-11 a.m. at Sunset Park. For the first time, this year’s walk will feature a 5K fun run. The walk is free, and registration for the 5K run is $45 for adults and $20 for youth under 18. Celebrities Penn & Teller will again serve as grand marshals for the 19th consecutive year and are encouraging walkers and runners to take the Penn & Teller Challenge, matching every challenger’s $250+ donation dollar for dollar. The 5K begins at 8 a.m. and walk kicks off at 10 a.m. Las Vegas entertainers will begin at 9 a.m. with performances from casts of “Celestia,” “Chippendales,” “Extravaganza” at Bally’s, “Human Nature,” “Potted Potter,” and “WOW – The Vegas Spectacular.” In between, walkers can visit booths from a variety of community partners and snack on treats from food trucks.
LAS VEGAS SPIRIT FEST: The Las Vegas Spirit Fest presented by Grace City Events in collaboration with SOS Radio 90.5 will take place Friday March 20 from 5-10 p.m. and Saturday, March 21 from 11 a.m.-10 p.m. at Craig Ranch Regional Park in North Las Vegas. The food and music festival, which is planned to be one of the largest Christian Faith based festivals in Nevada, will feature headlining performances from some big names in Christian music such as eight-time Grammy Nominee Natalie Grant, plus bands/musicians, gospel singers, carnival rides, games, arts/crafts, food trucks and vendors. Tickets start at $15 general admission to $75 for VIP. Children 48 inches and below are free if they bring a nonperishable food item at the gate admission to donate to Project150.
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Due to popular demand, acclaimed rock band Chicago will return to The Venetian Theatre at The Venetian® for the third year in a row for an eight-show limited engagement Feb. 28 through March 14. New this year, the famed aquatic “O” by Cirque du Soleil show at Bellagio has added performances on Mondays and Tuesdays. The show now performs nightly at 7 and 9:30 p.m. Gilley’s Saloon, Dance Hall & Bar-B-Que at Treasure Island features live country music with a cover charge ranging from $10 to $20 on select performance dates usually Wednesday-Saturday. Some acts performing in March include Daniel Bonte, Matt Farris, Rob Staley, Scotty Alexander, and Michael Austin. A casting producer is looking for contestants for Game Show Network’s hit show “Catch 21” to try their luck at a chance at $25,000. Submission information including name, location, age (must be 18 years of age), cell number, email, social media links, brief bio and recent photo can be emailed to email@example.com. Must be available to film one day in Las Vegas this year in May-June. The Tropicana will kick off its 2020 pool season on Monday, March 9, with innovative food and beverage offerings. Locals and tourists alike are welcome to experience a tropical oasis complete with various poolside amenities between the hours of 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.
Restaurateur Robert Earl, founder of Virtual Dining Concepts, launched Wing Squad delivery-only restaurant providing wings, sides and desserts via food delivery services including GrubHub, DoorDash, Uber Eats, and Postmates. The online menu at Wing Squad offers wings in six different flavors, including BBQ, Honey Garlic, Cajun, Garlic Parmesan, Sweet Chili, and Buffalo. In honor of National Pancake Day, 60 PT’s Taverns locations will offer its $4 junior three-stack of buttermilk pancakes, all day, on Thursday, March 12. Distill at 6945 S. Rainbow Blvd. will host its first Wine Pairing Dinner with J. Lohr Vineyards and Wines on Thursday, March 12 in the upstairs event space at 7 p.m. Tickets for the five-course dinner are $59.95. The Front Yard, Ellis Island’s new beer garden, restaurant and entertainment venue, is now serving brunch every Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., with live entertainment from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The menu features a reimagined twist on traditional brunch items. Strip-side Cabo Wabo Cantina inside the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood will become a destination for spring break parties with drink specials, live entertainment, breakfast and late nights throughout March.
Grammy-nominated artist Kid Rock was spotted attending the hit show “Absinthe” at Caesars Palace at Caesars Palace. After the 10 p.m. show, he went backstage for a photo with The Gazillionaire. Comedian and actress Jade Catta-Preta in town to perform her show at the Plaza Showroom, dined with friends, including fellow comedian Cort McCown, at Morton Group’s La Cave Wine & Food Hideaway at Wynn. Fight weekend brought out countless athletes and celebrities including Patrick Mahomes, Travis Kelce and Floyd Mayweather Jr., who partied at Drai’s Nightclub at The Cromwell Hotel. Mayweather was celebrating his 43rd birthday in style.