One reader asks, regarding senatorial aspirant Sue Lowden's esteemed Pioneer Hotel & Gambling Hall:
I'm confused (as usual, but...) - Isn't the Pioneer NOT a gambling hall now, its shell hosting an ABC convenience store & various other small shops?
I don't remember if I ever patronized the place when it was a casino, but its stores are in a good location for the Downtown tourist crowd; the ABC Store is especially popular with our Hawaiian friends. That's good for sales taxes, right?
As for the Vegas Club, please don't vaporize it yet: We're going to stay there at the end of the month, mainly because it's free for me - and a separate free room for a friend of mine - allowing him to attend the Speedway races for that much less money.
You're thinking of the Pioneer on Fremont Street, while Ms. Lowden's establishment is down in Laughlin. And it very much has gambling. As for dematerialization, S&G did not nominate the Vegas Club for that dubious honor but suggested that, as long as Sen. Harry Reid's people are threatening to "vaporize" Ms. Lowden that they make themselves useful and turn their phasers on her grind joint, which is regarded as a bottom-feeder even by Laughlin standards.
The Vegas Club is very much on people's minds, as another reader asks:
How is it possible that TV series VEGA$ starring Robert Urich came out on DVD on October 20 and I saw nothing in the Las Vegas media celebrating the occasion. I saw an ad in Newsweek. They couldn't get something with Wayne F. Newton at the Tropicana or Phyllis Davis and Judy Landers in front of the Plaza or the Las Vegas Club? Sad, sad, sad.
Ah, a Phyllis Davis shout-out. You're speaking our language. And, yes, that VEGA$ release really snuck by, didn't it? In a classic case of the blind following the blind, local TV stations take their cues from the newspapers. The various Greenspun-owned organs have been slashing staff at a fearsome rate, so it's understandable that they'd miss it.
As for the Las Vegas Review-Journal, suffice it to say that staffers there, up to and including head cheese Thomas Mitchell, had to be told that the Moulin Rouge was burning down because -- even though it was happening across the street -- they work in a penetentiary-like building with no windows to the outside world (architecture as institutional metaphor).
So it's not the least bit surprising that our insular and rapidly declining local media would totally blow this one. As for Mayor Oscar Goodman, he had a previous commitment in London, but still ... no proclamation? No declaration that Oct. 2009 was hereby "VEGA$ Day"? Another missed opportunity for some free ink.