BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW
contributed by Jackie Brett
STEVE AOKI CELEBRATES PREMIERE OF NEW VIVA VISION LIGHT SHOW: Last week, two-time Grammy Award-nominated record producer and DJ, Steve Aoki, celebrated the official premiere of his new Viva Vision light and sound show at the Fremont Street Experience and made a grand entrance flying on the SlotZilla zipline to the Main Street Stage. This was the first glimpse of the upgraded canopy while unveiling the six-minute musical montage featuring Aoki’s top hits “Delirious,” “Azukita” and “Waste It On Me.” His show runs daily and rotates with existing shows from artists such as Green Day, The Chainsmokers, Imagine Dragons, The Killers, Tiësto and more. This is the first phase of the $32 million renovation to the city-owned Viva Vision screen, which will be completed and revealed on New Year’s Eve 2019. Work is being done in sections to ensure visitors can enjoy the free light shows throughout the entire process.
MGM’S HUNGER GAMES EXHIBIT AWARDED GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS®: New in The Distract at the MGM Grand, The Hunger Games: The Exhibition held a grand opening this month and was awarded a Guinness World Records® title for having the Largest Interactive Touchscreen Display. The 60-foot wide interactive touchscreen display is the climactic highlight of the film-themed exhibition and acts as an archer training experience designed to provide guests with the skills to “join the rebellion.” The recently opened attraction is based on the films from Lionsgate, which grossed more than $3 billion at the worldwide box office. Visitors experience Katniss Everdeen’s epic journey from humble beginnings in District 12 to her rise as the Mockingjay. The exhibit features several galleries including the Hall of Justice, President Snow’s Office, the Tribute Train and District 13, along with an exploration of the world of Panem highlighting costumes, genuine props, and set recreations. The Hunger Games Exhibition is open daily 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Entry includes a commemorative ticket. Admission tickets are $35 for adults and $25 for children ages 4-11.
‘POTTED POTTER’ SHOW AT BALLY’S HAS UNLIMITED APPEAL: With curiosity and hesitation not having seen the Harry Potter movies or read the books, this reporter attended “Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Experience – A Parody by Dan and Jeff” in the Windows Showroom at Bally’s. The show, written and created by two-time Olivier Award-nominated BBC Television actors Daniel “Dan” Clarkson and Jefferson “Jeff” Turner, is starring the original creators at Bally’s through June 23. Originally in 2005, Dan and Jeff created a five-minute street show recapping the plot of the first five Potter books to perform for fans waiting in line for the midnight release of the sixth book. Their creation evolved from there. A new cast will take over June 24. While references are to the Harry Potter books, there is non-stop action with different characters and props, and adlibbing especially with the live Quidditch match. Over the past several years, the quick-witted show has completed multiple successful sold-out tours in different countries. “Potted Potter” is performed daily except Thursdays at 8 p.m. and 2 p.m. Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. Tickets range from $39.99 to $99.99.
JIMMY KIMMEL’S COMEDY CLUB OFFICIALLY OPENED AT LINQ PROMENADE: In partnership with Caesars Entertainment, Jimmy Kimmel’s Comedy Club at The LINQ Promenade held an official grand opening celebration featuring appearances from some of Kimmel’s closest friends, family and well-known comedians. Celebrity guests included Sarah Silverman, Chris Tucker, sidekick Guillermo Rodriguez, sports analyst, podcaster and founder of The Ringer, Bill Simmons, multi-Michelin Star chef Gordon Ramsay, Las Vegas Raiders owner Mark Davis, Cousin Sal, Aunt Chippy and others. The new comedy club captures the spirit of classic Vegas with late night shows, surprise guests, high-end casual cuisine and memorabilia. Comedians will range from household names to up-and-coming talent curated by Kimmel and his team. Kimmel’s custom designed 8,000-square-foot venue is dual-level and has an expandable showroom, which seats up to 300 guests. The bar opens daily at 4 p.m., while showcase performances are Thursday to Sunday at 8 p.m. with additional shows at 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.
FRITES WILL TAKE FRENCH FRIES CENTER STAGE AT EXCALIBUR: Frites Las Vegas will open June 24 at the Excalibur’s Castle Walk Food Court with an Instagram-able food truck façade. Original Frites and specialty ones are made with 100 percent beef tallow, which was the “secret” ingredient to some of the world’s most popular French fries. In addition, Frites Las Vegas will offer vegetarian options using peanut oil. The imaginative menu features a wide variety of creative meals from the classic Original Frites Fry, which can also be dressed up, to the sweet side with Churro-style Crinkle Cut Sweet Potato Fries with Whipped Malted Nutella Cream made with Coconut Oil. Frites Las Vegas is taking the French fry and giving the popular side dish the spotlight transforming the frites into a portable and crave-able meal on-the-go. Frites will be open daily Sunday through Thursday from 10:30 a.m.–midnight and Friday through Saturday from 10 a.m. –2 a.m.
PLAZA HOSTS JULY 4TH PARTY WITH FIREWORKS AND HOT DOG CONTEST: The Plaza will host its free annual Independence Day rooftop pool party on Thursday, July 4, which will culminate with downtown’s only live fireworks show at 9 p.m. Bigger this year, the fireworks will be staged from multiple locations on the Plaza’s roofs and towers. In the style of the famous annual event at Coney Island, there will be a hot dog eating contest. The grand prize includes $200, a two-night stay at the Plaza, $150 to Oscar’s Steakhouse, a pool cabana plus $50 towards food and beverage at the Pool at the Plaza. The contest is limited to 10 participants, 21 years of age or older, with registration open online until June 21. At the party with doors opening at 5 p.m., guests can swim or relax poolside while a DJ plays music and festivities start at 6 p.m. There will be drink specials and made-to-order poolside fare from the Pool at the Plaza Food Truck. On Friday, July 5 guests can receive a free inflatable flamingo drink holder. The Plaza’s Beer Olympics will be held on Saturday, July 6 with teams of five competing to win prizes.
SUMMERLIN CELEBRATES WITH FOURTH OF JULY PARADE: The 25th annual Summerlin Council Patriotic Parade with more than 70 entries including the return of the Vegas Golden Knights themed float, giant inflatable balloons, bands, performing groups and cartoon characters will be held on Thursday, July 4 from 9 to 11 a.m. More than 2,500 people are participating in the parade, which begins at the corner of Hillpointe Rd. and Hills Center Dr. in The Trails village of Summerlin.
OPPORTUNITY VILLAGE HOLDS SANTA RUN LAUNCH PARTY: Opportunity Village’s annual holiday fundraiser, the Las Vegas Great Santa Run will ring in its monumental 15th year with a Registration Launch Party beginning at 10:30 a.m. on the Main Street Stage at the Fremont Street Experience on Thursday, June 20 to encourage early bird sign-ups. There will be entertainment and special announcements including the unveiling of the 15th anniversary race medal. Early bird pricing of $22 is available online from June 20–30. After that, pricing increases to $30.
NEON MUSEUM FEATURES HOT YOGA CLASSES IN THE BONEYARD: Hot Yoga in the Boneyard at the Neon Museum is returning this summer. Taught by certified instructor Eileen Lorraine, the one-hour sessions will be held from 7 to 8 p.m. on the museum’s outdoor patio: June 26, July 10 and 24, and Aug. 7 and 21, with anticipated temperatures 100 degrees or higher. Participants should bring plenty of water, a yoga mat, towel, and any other desired yoga equipment. Yoga classes are $18 for ages 18 and older and $10 for Neon Museum members. Space is limited; need to sign up.
MADAME TUSSAUDS HOLDS AUDITIONS FOR A MARVEL 4D FILM: On Saturday, June 29 Madame Tussauds Las Vegas is hosting open auditions for one talented individual to appear in an exclusive role in a new global Marvel 4D film experience premiering next year. Interested people must don their favorite Marvel superhero costume and arrive at Madame Tussauds between 11 a.m.–5 p.m. Everyone dressed in costume will get the chance to enjoy the Madame Tussauds experience for free. Auditions are taking place in six cities with Madame Tussauds venues around the world.
Rapper Machine Gun Kelly (MGK) headlines the Pearl Concert Theater at the Palms with The Hotel Diablo World Tour on Saturday, June 29 at 8 p.m. His acting chops include his recent appearance as Tommy Lee in Netflix’s Mötley Crüe biopic, “The Dirt” and his part in the ensemble cast for Netflix’s 2018 “Bird Box” starring Sandra Bullock. Tickets start at $49. Popular reggae, pop and R&B group MAGIC! will appear in The Toyota Yard at Topgolf on Saturday, June 29 at 8 p.m. MAGIC! is a Toronto-bred, Los Angeles-based quartet whose reggae-pop tune of the summer “Rude,” held the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Hot 100 for six weeks. Over the past five years, the band has released three studio albums, toured with Maroon 5 and headlined shows all over the world. This is an all-ages show. Tickets start at $20 and all seating is general admission. The fundraising 33rd Annual “Ribbon of Life®,” an original production featuring custom production numbers from the best singers, dancers and performers from premier shows on the Strip, will take place Sunday, June 23 at 1 p.m. in The Legends in Concert Theater at The Tropicana. The theme this year is “Summer of Love – Celebrating Woodstock’s 50th Anniversary.” Tickets start at $34.70. National recording group Gin Blossoms will be center stage in the Veil Pavilion at the Silverton on Saturday, June 22 at 9 p.m. Tickets for the all-ages 90s rock band concert start at $40. Bobby Caldwell will perform in the Chrome Showroom at Santa Fe Station on Saturday, June 22 at 8 p.m. The New York native formed his first band at 17 years old. After signing his first major-label recording contract, he released his debut album “What You Won’t Do for Love” featuring the singles “My Flame,” “Can’t Say Goodbye” and “Down for the Third Time.” He released albums “Perfect Island Nights” in 2005 and “House of Cards” in 2012. In addition, Caldwell starred in the theatrical production “The Rat Pack is Back” in Las Vegas. Tickets are $20, $30 and $40. Tribute acts are headlining the Suncoast Showroom on Saturdays at 8:30 this month with tickets starting at $19.95. Tribute group Queen Nation, formed in 2004, pays homage to the golden age of British rock band Queen’s vintage concerts on Saturday 22. Formed in 2009, Journey tribute band DSB will deliver a nostalgic concert experience on June 29. The next outdoor Super Summer Theatre production at Spring Mountain Ranch State Park in Blue Diamond will be Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” told anew with song and dance June 26-July 13. General admission is $15.
Hong Kong’s Mott 32 on The Palazzo casino floor at The Venetian has introduced Dim Sum & Drink Sum featuring a fixed selection of dim sum, cocktails and wine from 5–7 p.m. and 9–11 p.m. daily inside the restaurant’s bar and lounge. El Dorado Cantina close to the Strip offers tropical cool ceviches and cocktails now through July 31. In addition, it’s the 5th anniversary for the Mexican restaurant, which is celebrating its “FLAN-inversary” by offering Chef Paco’s Grandma’s Flan (traditional or Patrón® XO Café) for just $5 each, or both for $8 for the month of June. Roy Choi is bringing limitless Korean BBQ to the Strip with the launch of All-You-Can-Eat (AYCE) Mondays priced at $65 at his Best Friend restaurant inside Park MGM. AYCE allows guests to choose two plates of BBQ at a time with the opportunity to mix-and-match and concludes with a chef’s selection of a special dessert for the table. Best Friend also features half-off any sake and champagne magnums on Mondays. Restaurant hours are daily 5 p.m.–midnight. PT’s Taverns, with 65 locations throughout the Las Vegas Valley and Nevada, will celebrate Fourth of July with special offers at all locations Thursday-Saturday, July 4-6. PT’s venues will offer $4 quarter-pound burgers and $4 Bud or Bud Light pints throughout the three days. A variety of hot dogs will also be available ranging from a regular dog for $3 up to $6 for a bacon-wrapped hot dog topped with beer cheese. For locals especially there’s always a sense of loss when a restaurant, which has survived 40 to 50 years in town closes. The original Marie Calendars on East Sahara between Paradise and Maryland Parkway is the latest one to become history.
SOME SPECIAL EVENTS
Absinthe’s Red, White & Veuve celebration will be held July 6 from noon to 2 a.m. in the Green Fairy Garden outside the “Absinthe” show’s tent. Sponsored by Veuve Clicquot, there will be food and drink specials with a DJ spinning tunes under the Absinthe Electric Oak all day and night long. The 8th Annual Bones and Booze will be held Friday, June 21 from 6-10 p.m. at the Las Vegas Natural History Museum with cool bones, small bites, booze and music. The museum’s fundraiser is for adults only. Tickets are $45 and $80 per couple. Plus, the party will continue ReBAR at 1225 S. Main Street with your first drink on the house. The Golden Nugget’s 11th annual Grand Poker Series Tournament, which began May 28, runs through July 8 in the Grand Event Center with more than 90 poker tournaments. Two Fridays are left for SG Bar’s weekly “Pinot on the Patio” parties with live music by Shawn Eiferman from 5 to 8 p.m. through June 28. SG Bar, owned and operated by PT’s Entertainment Group, is located at 9580 W. Flamingo.
ABOUT TOWN ITEMS
Hyde nightclub inside Bellagio will officially close its doors on Saturday, July 6. The Plaza has debuted a new kiosk game highlighting the city’s soccer team, the Las Vegas Lights FC, which rewards game attendees with the chance to win prizes. To play, guests need to bring a valid Las Vegas Lights home game ticket within seven days to the Plaza’s Royal Rewards Player’s Club. The Shoot Out game allows guests to select their Las Vegas Lights soccer player and try to kick a goal in a simulated soccer game to win prizes. One Washington native hit a jackpot at the STRAT and won $1,896,000 playing Buffalo Grand, an Aristocrat Technologies, Inc. machine, this month. Also, this month a table games player at Paris hit a $1.64 million Pai Gow poker progressive jackpot, which is linked at Caesars Entertainment’s 13 properties statewide. In the last nine months, Caesars Entertainment has awarded six table games jackpots exceeding $1 million across multiple Nevada properties, including two at Paris. On June 30, Hearts Alive Village animal rescue will celebrate its four-year anniversary and open a new senior pet adoption center, Oldies but Goodies, and thrift store. Hours are daily opening at 10 a.m. Location is 1750 S. Rainbow Blvd., Suites 9 and 10.
Meghan McCain, a co-host on “The View,” attended the show “Opium” at The Cosmopolitan last week and was spotted onstage as a volunteer assistant for the sword-swallowing Rear Admiral Todd Vader. After the show, McCain went backstage for photos with the crew of the starship OPM 73. Actor Sean Astin, known for his title role in the 1993 film “Rudy” and as Sam in “Lord of the Rings,” dined at Morton Group’s Crush inside the MGM Grand with two friends around 10 p.m., following the UFC fight between Tyson Fury and Tom Schwarz. Also last week, Rick Harrison of “Pawn Stars” fame attended the hit show “Absinthe” at Caesars Palace and went backstage afterwards for a photo with The Gazillionaire and the enchanting Green Fairy.