BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW
Contributed by Jackie Brett
ENTERTAINMENT IS EMERGING: This week the news is getting better, some shows are reopening. All the shows are following the Covid-19 mandates and safety measures such as the mandatory 25-foot distance from the stage to the audience, six-feet of separation, reduced capacity, wearing masks, etc. Everyone is working hard to come up with acceptable solutions to keep audiences and visitors safe.
BOBBY FLAY PLANS AMALFI AT CAESARS PALACE: To make room for award-winning chef Bobby Flay’s new project Amalfi, it means his Mesa Grill at Caesars Palace will close on Saturday, Nov. 14 after 16 successful years. Flay’s Mesa Grill concept originated in New York City in 1991 and expanded to the Southwest to Caesars Palace in 2004. Since then, Mesa Grill has welcomed nearly three million guests and donated more than $135,000 to Three Square Food Bank. Almafi, a new concept for Flay, is inspired by his extensive travels to Italy and the Amalfi Coast. This is his first Italian restaurant project. With an anticipated late spring 2021 opening, Amalfi will transport guests to the Mediterranean with its enchanting blend of coastal ease and fresh flavors. A focal point at Amalfi will be a fish and seafood display, inspired by authentic Italian markets and staffed by a knowledgeable fishmonger, who will be available to answer guests’ questions. Guests may order a whole fish, prepared grilled over charcoal, or roasted al forno, served with lemon, capers, and salsa verde. The restaurant’s design by Olivia Jane Design & Interiors, will feature a timeless design with a natural palate and touches of greenery throughout, blended with elements like organic fabrics, stone, and wood materials, lending depth and a sense of history to the space. Amalfi will offer four unique yet cohesive spaces—the bar and lounge, the grille/main dining room, the market room, and a private dining room. As guests enter the lounge and bar area, they will be met with a sunset glow, cast over the lounge by the sprawling 30-seat bar, nearly 50 feet long. The 40-seat lounge area will have a variety of seating options suitable for a casual cocktail or full meal. The grille room/main dining room area will feature towering ceilings with a wine display terraced about a high-energy open kitchen. In the evening, the room will be aglow from the streetlamp inspired hanging light fixtures. Seating in the market room area will offer the best views of the seafood display. The most intimate experience will be available in the private dining room or fresco room. This will offer a space for groups up to 60.
‘MJ LIVE’ RETURNS AT THE STRAT: “MJ LIVE” at The STRAT starring Jalles Franca will resume on Wednesday, Nov. 4, and headline Wednesday through Saturday at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $57.50. This acclaimed tribute show recreates the feel of one of Michael Jackson’s electrifying stage shows with Franca’s impersonation, dancers, a live band, and lighting effects. From iconic dance moves like the moonwalk to timeless hits like “Bad,” “Billie Jean,” “Thriller” and “Beat It,” the spot-on performance brings all the Gloved One’s staples to life including a special Jackson 5 segment featuring classics like “I’ll Be There,” “I Want You Back,” “ABC,” and more. Franca moved from Brazil to the United States when he was 16 years old to follow his dream as a professional dancer in Las Vegas. When he was 21, he began a seven-year residency as a performer, dancer, and percussionist at Studio 54 Nightclub inside the MGM Grand. The “King of Pop” fan began imitating Jackson’s signature dance moves at the nightclub and around town. After his idol passed, he began winning competitions as an impersonator and then being featured in multiple tribute shows on the Strip.
LAUGH FACTORY AT TROPICANA REOPENS: The world-famous Laugh Factory will reopen Thursday, Nov. 5, at the Tropicana with Bob Zany headlining, along with Brian McKim and Traci Skene with two shows Thursday through Sunday at 8:30 and 10:30 p.m. Andrew Dice Clay will take the stage Thanksgiving weekend, Nov. 27-29 with Eleanor Kerrigan as his opening act. She will in addition headline the club’s Thursday shows at 8:30 and 10:30 p.m. The “Diceman” will perform at 10:30 p.m. on Friday and Sunday, and both 8:30 and 10:30 p.m. shows on Saturday. Stand-up comedian Bob Zany is known for performing on stage with his trademark cigar. Zany’s stage persona has evolved over the years, but his dramatic weight loss in 1991 caused the need for a material overhaul…along with the 175 pounds, he lost 30 minutes of his act. Zandy spent the following year doing late night spots at Hollywood clubs to “reinvent” himself. He has appeared on more than 100 national television shows, and currently appears weekly on the nationally syndicated radio program “The Bob and Tom Show,” on his own segment “The Zany Report.” Rich Little will reopen his early 6:30 p.m. evening show, Thursday through Sunday, soon after the Laugh Factory reemerges. Murray SawChuck will open his family-friendly comedy magic show in late November or early December.
TAPE FACE RETURNS TO HARRAH’S IN NOVEMBER: Appearing on “America’s Got Talent” and “America’s Got Talent: The Champions” and famous for appearing with tape over his mouth, Tape Face made a home for himself in Las Vegas headlining his own show at Harrah’s with a magical brand of physical comedy and feats of the imagination. Due to Covid-19 regulations, the Tape Face show will not be performing in its custom-built theater, House of Tape, and will instead appear in Harrah’s Showroom to maintain social distancing and open on Nov. 11. Theater capacity max will be 250 guests. Tape Face, who is New Zealand comedian Sam Wills, has completely redesigned his show due to the pandemic circumstances. Connecting with fans up close and personal is one of Tape Face’s favorite parts of his act. Fans rarely see him outside of his character, but this time he will remove the tape for a Q&A with the audience at every show. That’s right – no gaffer tape, just Wills and a microphone answering questions from audience members while on stage prior to the traditional Tape Face show component filled with amusing routines using sounds, music and laughter with the underlying message of being true to yourself. Shows start at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. Ticket prices begin at $66.
DELIRIOUS COMEDY CLUB RETURNS TO DOWNTOWN GRAND: The Delirious Comedy Club reopened this month at the Downtown Grand in The Fremont Room with reduced capacity for social distancing. The club features locally and globally celebrated comedians and other special guests every Thursday through Sunday at 8 and 10 p.m. coupling traditional standup with an untraditional lineup. The lineup Oct. 29-Nov. 3 includes Don Barnhart, Ron Coleman, Ralph Tutela, and special guests.
LIP LAB BY BITE IS OPENING IN LAS VEGAS: Lip Lab by BITE will be opening Nov. 6 bringing the infinite possibilities of clean custom lipstick to Las Vegas at the Fashion Show mall. Las Vegas will be Lip Lab’s fifth location in the United States and Canada. The 1,030-square-foot store takes beauty to another level – combining clean, high-quality product with total customization. What’s new for the Las Vegas location is Lip Lab’s first full oval-shaped layout where clients can safely interact with one another across the space and with a customized façade. There will be rapid heating and cooling technologies, and high-speed mixers blending each lipstick 2,500 times in five seconds to achieve the perfect lipstick. How the Lip Lab experience works is you pick your package, one Custom Lipstick for $60 or two Custom Lipsticks plus a Lip Care Kit for $120. You create your shade, choose your finish, add your flavor, name it, and engrave it. Also, a new virtual consultation is available.To celebrate the grand opening, guests will receive 15-percent off when booking with code “welcome15” through Nov. 30.
HALLOWEEN FUN AT ADVENTUREDOME: Ghosts and ghouls can enjoy trick-or-treating at Circus Circus’ indoor amusement park the Adventuredome on Saturday, Oct. 31 from noon to 4 p.m. Southern Nevada residents with proof of ID are also eligible for a 20 percent discount on admission from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. There will be trick-or-treating across the five-acre indoor amusement park included with purchase of admission. Ride attendants will distribute sweet treats after the ride is complete, and kids must ride to receive candy. If they do not have a trick-or-treat bag, one will be provided. Halloween costumes are encouraged, but costume masks will not be permitted. All guests must wear appropriate facemasks.
HALLOWEEN ACTIVITIES AND CANDY SHOP OPENING AT AREA15: Part of the festivities over Halloween at AREA15 will be the opening of the immersive entertainment complex’s newest tenant, Rocket Fizz. The nationwide soda pop and candy shop will be making its grand entrance at AREA15 opening at 4 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 30 and Saturday, Oct. 31. Rocket Fizz will be handing out complimentary pieces of taffy candy to all visitors in costume who stop by their shop. On Friday, Oct. 30 from 4 p.m. to midnight, the night is divided into 4 to 7 p.m. early entry with family-friendly festivities. Late entry from 8 p.m. to midnight geared toward adults, but open to all ages. Early Entry is $5; children 10 years old and younger are free. Late Entry is a $15 cover charge for all ages. Guests can channel their favorite B-movie horror flick and come dressed to kill for devilish fun. ScAREA15 will deliver a witch’s brew of socially distanced candy shoots, ghostly performances inside The Portal, scariest costume contests, prizes and more. The Future Carnival will be Saturday, Oct. 31 from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. with the late entry going to 2 a.m. and a $25 cover charge. Fly into Future Carnival will be part costume bash and part trippy transformation. Guests are invited to come dressed in their best intergalactic looks and celebrate Halloween among acrobats, stilt walkers, fortune tellers, candy shoots, prizes, and galaxy games. Guests will enjoy live performances inside The Portal, intergalactic costume contests, and more. Also available both nights will be cash bar potion stations and food for purchase from The Beast Pop-up by Todd English.
HALLOWEEN AT HYPERX ESPORTS ARENA: As the clock strikes midnight on Halloween morning, gamers are invited to an overnight watch party for the 2020 League of Legends World Championship at the HyperX Esports Arena at the Luxor. Doors for the watch party will open at midnight on Oct. 31 – just after the Arena’s Friday Frags tournament – and the Finals will begin at 3 a.m. Spectator tickets for the event are free. Guests can pre-register for 50 percent off gameplay, or four hours for $20. Later that Halloween night beginning at 5:30 p.m., the arena will host a special edition of Saturday “Fright” Speedway featuring a Mario Kart 8 Deluxe tournament and costume contest. Dress like your favorite Mario Kart character (or anything else) and take home a piece of the $500 contest, including $300 for first place. Racers can register in the tournament for $10 and compete to advance through four stages – qualifiers, last chance battle, semi-finals, and grand finale. A $700 prize pool will be split between all racers who qualify for the grand finale.
CHUCK THE PUMPKIN FOR A CAUSE: When your jack-o-lantern has served its purpose, instead of tossing it in the trash, consider recycling it. Pumpkin recycling will take over the city now through Nov. 6. Las Vegas Livestock is providing collection bins for the public to recycle their pumpkins free of charge. The tasty treats will be fed to pigs and chickens being raised near Apex, North of the Las Vegas Valley. Locations throughout the valley include JW Marriott near the marquee, UNLV Rebel Recycling Center at the corner of Flamingo and Swenson, Master Gardener Orchard at 4600 Horse Drive, and CAL-Ranch Store at 232 N. Jones Blvd.
ABOUT TOWN: Zombie Nachos ($11.95) will return for one ghoulish night at all Distill and Remedy’s locations valley-wide on Saturday, Oct. 31. The dish can be paired with a spooky Jack-O-Lantern Cocktail ($6) concocted with Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey and Tennessee Fire, sour mix, ginger beer, and lemon.
FREED’S BAKERY OFFERS ELECTORAL COLLEGE CAKES: With the upcoming national election, Freed’s Bakery, a family-owned business for 60 years in Las Vegas, will offer interactive Electoral College Map Cakes through Election Day on Nov. 3. Freed’s imaginative cake designs have been showcased on Food Network’s popular show, “Vegas Cakes.” Customers can create personalized 2020 election forecasts or follow along on election night as states turn red and blue with appropriate icing-filled bags to decorate the cake. Electoral College Map Cakes are available in all signature Freed’s Bakery flavors and may be purchased as a quarter sheet, half sheet and full sheet cake sizes. The cakes are available by pick-up, local delivery, and nationwide shipping, starting at $85.95. Freed’s baked goods are currently available at Freed’s Bakery in Las Vegas and both Freed’s Dessert Shops.
NEON MUSEUM ANNOUNCES DATES FOR ARTIST TALK AND OPEN STUDIO: Nigerian-American artist, photographer, and writer Victor Ehikhamenor, who maintains a studio in Lagos, Nigeria, and Upper Marlboro, Maryland, was selected by The Neon Museum from a list of 110 applicants earlier this year. His residency sponsored by the Nevada Arts Council takes place from Oct. 26 through Dec. 18. During his residency, Downtown Las Vegas high-rise condo tower, Juhl, is providing the artist with a live/workspace, which includes a studio visible from the street so the public can watch him work. Ehikhamenor also has workspace at The Neon Museum’s Ne10 Studio. He has been prolific in producing abstract, symbolic, and politically motivated works. The free Artist Talk via Zoom and Facebook Live will be held Thursday, Nov. 5 at noon, and you need to RSVP. Ehikhamenor will speak about his work process and his large-scale works. The Open Studio with Victor Ehikhamenor will be held Thursday, Dec. 17 from 6-8 p.m. at the Ne10 Studio at 1001 West Bonanza Road, and online. Event is free, but space is limited.
FASHION SHOW AND GALLERIA HOST OPEN-AIR MOVIE NIGHTS: Fashion Show mall on the Strip and Galleria at Sunset in Henderson are hosting a series of open-air movie nights for locals and visitors to enjoy at both shopping destinations this fall. Debuting over Halloween weekend, the drive-up events invite folks to experience a safe night out in the comfort of their own vehicles. This Halloween weekend at Galleria it will be a Monsters, Movies & Automobiles event hosted with three showings of “Casper,” at 7 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 30 and 6:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 31 in the North Parking Lot by the food court entrance. Carpool Cinema at Fashion Show in the North Parking Deck by Nordstrom will be a double feature showing “Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch” at 6 p.m. and “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” at 8:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 13-14. Admission to each showing is complimentary and tickets for both events can be reserved online at Eventbrite. Additional dates for the movie night series in January and February 2021 are to be announced in the coming months.
THE STRAT AMONG NATION’S TOP 100 GROSSING RESTAURANTS: The STRAT’s 360-degree rotating Top of the World restaurant was the top grossing independently owned Las Vegas restaurant in 2019 according to the annual “Top 100 Independents” list posted online by Restaurant Business magazine this month. Top of the World came in at number seven among restaurants nationwide and is one of several Las Vegas restaurants to make the list. The magazine attributes Top of the World’s rise to “a freshly renovated space and menu upgrades.”