Compiled by LVA Research
• March 8, 2014 21:11 Linq Overflow: Tonight sees the debut of the Brooklyn Bowl, the much-anticipated anchor venue at The Linq, and we just received an eye-witness report from an attendee that the parking lot at The Quad is already completely full, and that guests are being redirected to park in the rear, in the lot off Koval behind the wheel. Expect general traffic congestion in the area for a while.
• March 8, 2014 15:39 Brooklyn Bowl Opens Tonight: The co-headliner (along with the High Roller observation wheel) of The Linq opens tonight at 6 p.m. It's being termed a soft opening, but all facets of the bar, restaurant, bowling alley, concert hall will be in action. We got a sneak peek yesterday and this could be a category killer for concerts. Very cool place.
• March 8, 2014 11:37 UFC Gustafsson/Manua: Alexander Gustafsson is a -560 favorite over Jimi Manuwa in today's UFC main event. In the other featured match, Michael Johnson is -150 over Melvin Guillard.
• March 8, 2014 10:57 Race Traffic: Watch for traffic snarls today and tomorrow on north I-15 around the Las Vegas Motor Speedway in connection with the NASCAR events. New travel-time signs have been put up in the area to assist travelers. The worst traffic is expected to materialize around Sunday's featured Kobalt 400, with the main problem times being from 9 a.m. to noon and after 3 p.m.
• March 8, 2014 09:31 Local-Author Book Signing: Henderson Libraries host the Local Author Showcase Launch Party from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. today at the Paseo Verde Library, 280 S. Green Valley Parkway. The event will include a book-publishing workshop, an author meet-and-greet, a discussion panel, and the unveiling of the new Local Author Collection. More than 40 authors will be present, including Matt O'Brien, Deborah Coonts, David Schwartz, and Gerard de Marigny.
• March 7, 2014 17:01 Restaurant Week: The annual valley-wide fundraiser for Three Square food bank gets underway today, with multiple participating restaurants of all hues and price-ranges participating with specially priced menu options. Visit helpoutdineoutlv.com for a full list of venues, menus, and price points.
• March 7, 2014 16:17 Free Ice Cream, but Hurry!: To mark the arrival of Texas-based Blue Bell ice cream to supermarkets around the Las Vegas valley this week, free samples are being given out today at the Walmart located at 1807 W. Craig Rd. and at the Smith's at 7130 Durango Dr., but hurry because the promo is only running until 5 p.m.
• March 7, 2014 11:20 Elvis Exhibit to Exit?: We have not yet been able to make direct contact with the exhibit to confirm this, but we just learned via a traditionally reliable source that the King's Ransom collection of Elvis memorabilia, currently free to view at Binion's, will be closing March 31 due to poor attendance. So, Elvis fans, head on over now if you haven't yet seen it.
• March 7, 2014 10:17 2014 Daylife Season Debuts: Don't be thinking that a little wind today will deter the Mandalay Beach pool complex or Cosmo's Marquee Dayclub from opening today, to be followed tomorrow by Encore Beach Club and Venetian’s TAO Beach. Here we go!
• March 7, 2014 10:02 Rockhouse B'day Bash: Rockhouse, which opened Stripside at Imperial Palace before being relocated inside Grand Canal Shoppes at The Venetian, is throwing an anniversary party Tuesday, March 11, to celebrate its first year at its new home. The festivities kick off at 9 p.m. and Strip performers will be in attendance, including the cast of Fantasy, magician Jeff Civillico, and some Chippendales, who will be joined by reigning Miss Nevada Nia Sanchez.
• March 6, 2014 17:32 Las Vegas This Weekend: It's a big weekend for motor-racing fans, with Sprint Cup weekend out at the Speedway. Plus, we've got beer, fighting, and red-neck comedy. Coincidence? Wethinks not. Oh, and don't worry, because for everyone else, it's First Friday time -- don't forget to bring your camera/smartphone/personal film crew for a chance to enter the current short-film contest (see earlier item in "Today's News" for details).
- NASCAR has taken over the Las Vegas Motor Speedway (3/5-3/9) and there will be autograph sessions and photo ops all over town. For a list of scheduled events, check out the Las Vegas Sun
- Andrew Dice Clay entertains at the Hard Rock (3/6-3/9)
- Ron White does stand up at the Mirage (3/7-3/8)
- Diamond Rio performs at South Point (3/4-3/9)
- Canelo Alverez takes on Alfredo Angulo at MGM Grand (3/8)
- The Brew's Best Beer Festival takes place out at Lake Las Vegas (3/8)
- And it should be lovely weather for First Friday time in the downtown Arts District (3/7)
• March 6, 2014 15:19 Zippity Zip Line!: Breaking news: The Rio's VooDoo ZipLine is being strung as we write, for real! There's not much to see right now -- it's just an unimpressive-looking piece of string in the distance from where we're sitting, but it's being fed from the VooDoo Lounge roof to the lower tower, right now. So finally the invisible zip line is right before our eyes and we're about ready to eat our hats. (All of them.) We will try to post some kind of photographic proof later, but right now we're tied up playing a poker tournament and we're winning, so we can't justify leaving our desk to try to stretch the capability of our iPhone to its limit, so you'll just have to take our word for it until later. Sorry, but you know we wouldn't tell a lie about something as significant as this.
• March 6, 2014 14:29 New Strip Club Opens: Tonight sees the grand opening of Gold Club Las Vegas, the newest gentlemen's club on the block (that block being out by Town Square, on the site of the former Mile High Club). Hours at the two-story venue are 4 p.m. to 6 a.m. nightly (with Insomnia after-hours until 8 a.m. Fri./Sat.). Visit the club website to sign up for their event-update emails, plus the chance to win a free VIP party for up to 12 guests.
• March 6, 2014 13:40 Palms Offering All-Day Checkout: In a sensitive move from a casino known for its party crowd, and just in time for pool season, the Palms has become the first hotel in Las Vegas to offer a complimentary 24-hour checkout option on Superior, Premier, and Ivory Suites, when booked via Palms.com. So, if a guest checks in at 8 p.m. on a Friday, they will be allowed to keep the room until 8 p.m. on their day of departure. For more information about hotel policies in Las Vegas when it comes to early check-in or late check-out (hint: a fee is generally involved, and sometimes a hefty one), see "Question of the Day" 1/16/2013 in the QoD Archives for our unique investigation into this subject.
• March 6, 2014 11:52 Chefs to the Max: The latest in a series of ongoing fundraising events for Las Vegas food critic and author Max Jacobson, who sustained critical head injuries as the result of being hit by a truck shortly before Christmas, will take place March 13 inside Tacos & Tequila at Luxor. Tickets to "Viva Max!," a cocktail mixer and three-course dinner catered by Executive Chef Saul Ortiz and featuring a live Mariachi band, are $100 per person. Call 702-735-8322 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to make your reservation(s). Proceeds from the event will go assisting with Max's mounting medical bills and other expenses while he recuperates from his injuries and undergoes a lengthy process of rehabilitation.
• March 6, 2014 11:23 Gambler Sues LV Casino for Half-Mill Losses: A Southern California man who claims that his $500,000 losses at the Downtown Grand over Super Bowl weekend were as a result of the casino continuing to allow him to play pai gow and blackjack while he was visibly intoxicated which, if proven, would be a violation of Nevada state gaming regulations. Mark Johnston claims he has no recollection of the night of February 2, having been on a drinking binge since arriving in Las Vegas the previous Thursday; the casino is counter-suing, claiming the visitor from Ventura is simply trying to get out of paying and is also seeking compensation for his alleged besmirching of their property's reputation.
In a similar previous high-profile case involving Caesars Palace back in 2007 ended initially with gambler Terence Watanabe being slapped with four felony charges when he refused to pay up the $120 million he lost on a degenerate gambling spree, although the two parties eventually settled for a $100,000 payment from the player. While exonerated in Nevada, where the incident took place, however, CET in turn found itself reprimanded over the incident by New Jersey regulators, which levied a $225,000 fine on the casino group for its part in an incident that was seen as detrimental to the image of the gaming industry. A strip-club patron who tried to dispute the $30,000 charge on his Amex card on the same grounds of oblivious intoxication, subsequently quietly let the matter drop. We'll be interested to see how this latest incident pans out...
• March 6, 2014 11:12 Rio Gets Supernatural: It's not spooky voodoo we're referring to, but word that the "Salute to Supernatural Convention" will return to the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino this March 13-16, featuring a four-day fan fest headlined by Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles, stars of the popular show now in its 9th season on The CW Network. GA tix are available in advance or at the door; prices start at $30 for Thursday, escalating to $70 on Saturday, with separate ticketing for some of the after-hours events, including live-music concerts taking place throughout the weekend.
• March 6, 2014 10:10 First Friday Film Contest: Downtown's monthly community-arts festival is holding a film contest this Friday, March 7, with all accomplished and aspiring filmmakers invited to come "shoot a short" on the theme of "Secrets of First Friday" within the event's hours of 5-11 p.m. The competition is open to any genre and there's a $1,000-cash first prize up for grabs. Films must be between 1:30 and 5 mins. in length and must feature at least one iconic downtown landmark. Check out @FirstFridayLV on Twitter for more info, and good luck!
• March 5, 2014 16:45 Pool Season Cometh: We may be experiencing some typically erratic seasonal weather, but that won't deter daylife from debuting this month Mandalay Bay’s pool complex and Cosmo’s Marquee set to be first into the water this year, with March 7 openings. Encore Beach Club follows March 8, with Venetian’s TAO Beach, Mirage’s BARE, and MGM Grand's Wet Republic readying for Spring Break, with March 13/14 debuts this year, followed by Palms on March 17.
While Rehab at Hard Rock continues to play hard-to-get, and won't open until April, like last year, there is good news for all hardcore partiers, however, with word that what was originally planned as a Sunday chill-out-and-recovery session, then grew into the daddy of all pool parties, will this season expand to Saturdays, too, commencing April 12 and 13, with performances by Robin Thicke and Flo Rida to kick off the craziness.
• March 5, 2014 16:15 New Addition to Strip Ent. Scene: In addition to all the big-budget production shows, the Strip has long fostered some more intimate and off-the-wall entertainment options, from Karaoke and lounge singers, to beer pong and pole-dance classes. Now comes word of an interesting new dimension for beer-loving brainiacs, with word that Minus5 Ice Bar at Mandalay Place has partnered with Sin City Trivia to host a bi-monthly Trivia Night in the venue's Lodge Bar, which isn't subject to sub-zero temperatures, so your pencil finger should be safe from frostbite. The events, kicking off March 13 and running alternate Thursdays from 7:30-9:30 p.m., will also feature $3 beer and wine, plus other cocktail specials, to help lubricate your brain cells. The event has no cover/entry fee, although admission to the Ice Lounge itself is extra ($17).
• March 5, 2014 16:06 NASCAR Hits the Strip: Ahead of this Sunday's Sprint Cup race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, the massive semi-trucks that hold the competing cars are preparing to parade up the Strip this evening, as is their custom, so motorsports enthusiasts get down to Las Vegas Boulevard before 6 p.m., when you'll get the chance for an up-close look at the 50+ competitors in this weekend's races. The parade will assemble at the south end of the Strip, around Russell Road, before moving northbound to Sahara Avenue, where the trucks will branch off onto the I-15 en route for the Speedway. Drivers be aware that delays are to be expected all around the route.
• March 5, 2014 12:23 Invisible Progress at Resorts World: Back at the end of January, we fielded a Question of the Day regarding the progress -- or apparent lack thereof - on Genting's re-visioning of the abandoned Echelon Place into the Chinese-themed Resorts World Las Vegas (QoD 1/24/14). This week, the LV R-J posed the same question and was basically informed by the new owners, amid a lot of political bluster and PR spin, that they have been very "busy" and are taking a "thoughtful" approach to the development, which is another way of saying that absolutely nothing has happened since the plan was first announced a year or so ago. However, apparently this inactivity is still on track to become a thing of the past at some point during 2014. "By the next anniversary, the site will look much different," according to project spokesman Stefan Friedman. We will continue to monitor the site for signs of action.
• March 5, 2014 11:14 Street Magician Hits the Strip: Ultimate Poker today launched a new web TV series called "Strip Magic," featuring acclaimed poker pro and professional magician Antonio Esfandiari. You can view the inaugural episode of the new six-part street-magic show on YouTube.
• March 5, 2014 10:46 Festival of Beauty at Forum Shops: March 21-22, from 1-8 p.m., the Forum Shops at Caesars will host a free two-day "Festival of Beauty," featuring live beauty presentations, make-up touch ups, music, beauty bars, product demons, and more, from leading cosmetic companies represented in the high-end mall, including Dior Beauty, Inglot, Fresh, Kiehl's, MAC, and Sephora. Register in advance at any participating store for the chance to win gifts, including shopping sprees and beauty products.
• March 4, 2014 14:52 New (Secret?) Elvis-Tribute Show: We may have lost a Beatles-tribute show (hopefully only temporarily - see "Today's News" on the Phat Pack), but we just learned, via a surprise invitation on Twitter from the producers of All Shook Up, that this new Elvis tribute that we'd never heard of is now performing nightly in the V Theater at 6 p.m. (dark Fridays). Tickets start at $59.99, plus tax/fees and from what we can gather it's very new, as in it's only been open a few days, since the Box Office mentioned nothing of its existence when we called for our monthly update last week.
• March 4, 2014 13:52 Spike in Home Prices Spearheaded by Silver State: After three straight months of declines, massive gains of 22.2% in Nevada in January helped turn around the recent downward trend in home prices, with other significant gains in California (20.3%); Oregon (14.3%); Michigan (13.7%); and Georgia (13.4%). Mississippi was the only state to report a drop, with an average uptick nationwide of 0.9%.
• March 4, 2014 13:06 The Cromwell is Hiring: In the latest in what's been a flurry of early-spring hiring events (SLS, The LINQ, various pools and bars, etc.), the latest to announce a recruitment drive is The Cromwell, which is looking to fill more than 1,000 openings across all front-and-back of house positions at scheduled events throughout the month of March. To be considered, candidates must complete an online application at caesarsjobs.com, where additional information can be found.
• March 4, 2014 11:36 Another Virgin Deal: For the first time in known history, Virgin America has discounted fares from Las Vegas to California (and other destinations) right through into June, reports TravelZoo. The two-day-only sale sees nonstop one-way fares from Las Vegas to L.A. cut to just $49, or $59 to San Francisco, with surrounding dates from $10 more. The sale ends 11:59 p.m. CT Wednesday.
• March 4, 2014 10:30 Happy Fat Tuesday!: It's Mardi Gras time, and while a few places, like KRAVE, Springs Preserver, and GVR held their parties over the weekend, there are still numerous venues around town celebrating in some fashion or another today. Here are some of the highlights:
- Free pancakes at IHOP: The restaurant chain is offering patrons across the U.S. a complimentary short stack of buttermilk pancakes today in exchange for a voluntary donation to the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, with a goal of raising $3 million.
- South Point: The Garden Buffet is serving Mardi Gras-inspired lunch and dinner spreads today, featuring menu items including Louisiana gumbo, crawfish bisque, "voodoo" seafood casserole, jambalaya, shrimp Creole with fettuccine, bread pudding, King Cake, and more.
- Orleans: Naturally, the off-Strip casino is entering into the Fat Tuesday spirit, with Mardi Gras girls parading through the casino, handing out free beads and T-shirts from 2-8 p.m.
- Rhythm Kitchen: This restaurant located at 6435 S. Decatur hosts its fifth annual crawfish broil this evening ($32/person), featuring drink specials including Aribas and Hurricanes.
- Lola's: The Louisiana Kitchen in downtown's Holsum Lofts building (and coming soon to Summerlin), is hosting an all-day celebration, with LOUISIANA KITCHEN Lola's throws an all-day Mardi Gras celebration, with traditional menu items and Hurricanes flowing all day. Masks encouraged.
- Silver Sevens: Here's another Cajun-inspired inspired buffet spread today, featuring jambalaya, shrimp Creole, seafood gumbo, andouille sausage, and bread pudding ($9.99 with players card).
- Aliante: Medley Buffet will feature Cajun-inspired menu specials today only.
- 1 OAK: The nightclub at the Mirage hosts "Party Gras" tonight, with free beads for all partygoers."
- Ghostbar: The rooftop bar at Palms celebrates tonight, with free admission to all masked guests.
• March 4, 2014 10:02 Dancer Stands Corrected: In this week's video poker column, expert Bob Dancer delves into math terminology and learns something new, while passing on some "wish-I-would've-known-this-back-then" advice for aspiring professional gamblers.
• March 3, 2014 17:07 March Casino Promos: Low roller extraordinaire Jean Scott has posted her monthly round-up of casino promos at Frugal Vegas, so be sure to check out her post for insights and updates, plus a heads-up to remember to look out for Mardi Gras, St. Patrick's Day, and March Madness specials as the month rolls on...
• March 3, 2014 13:48 Stiffs & Georges on Caesars' Sale: Check out our Stiffs & Georges blog, from acclaimed casino-industry writer David McKee, for his take on the details of today's announcement that Caesars Entertainment has basically sold four of its casinos to itself.
• March 3, 2014 10:48 Pawn Stars Show on the Move: It was announced this morning that Pawn Shop Live!, the Broadway-style comedy parodying the story of the hit History Channel show "Pawn Stars," will be moving April 21 from its current home downtown at the Golden Nugget to the Riviera's Starlite Theatre.
• March 3, 2014 10:18 Le Rêve Celebrates Milestone with Contest: Later this month, Le Rêve – The Dream, which opened with the debut of Wynn Las Vegas almost nine years ago, will perform its 4,000th show and to celebrate the milestone, the production is holding a photo contest. Previous audience members are invited to follow @lerevethedream on Instagram and post a non-flash photo of their favorite moment of the show to their personal account with the hashtag #4000dreams and tag @lerevethedream, then complete the entry form at visitwynn.com/4000dreams for the chance to win a VIP two-night room-show-and-dining package, that includes lunch with cast members and a private backstage tour of the aquatic acrobatic spectacular. Contest runs March 1-31; check the Facebook link above for more details.
• March 3, 2014 09:33 I-15 Cleared: Interstate 15 is reported to be cleared, now, following an injury accident early this morning involving two motorcycles that saw all northbound lanes shut down in the vicinity of Charleston Boulevard.
• March 3, 2014 09:26 Metro Reminder: Today's the day that Metro ceases to respond to non-injury traffic accidents, placing the responsibility on the drivers involved to record the details, produce and exchange the relevant paperwork, and complete and submit Form SR-1 to the DMV within 10 days of the incident occurring.
• March 2, 2014 17:17 Oscar Odds: In tonight's Academy Awards, 12 Years a Slave is the -365 favorite for Best Picture. Matthew McConaughey is -530 to win Best Actor, Cate Blanchett is -2600 for Best Actress, Jared Leto is -1600 for Best Supporting Actor, and Lupita Nyong'o is -265 for Best Supporting Actress.
• March 2, 2014 12:56 Lake Mead the Biggest?: A story in today's LV Review-Journal makes a point that Lake Mead may not really be the nation's largest man-made lake, a title that its had for years. Due to a long-running drought, Lake Mead ranks fourth in terms of the amount of water it currently holds. Lake Mead has 12.5 million acre-feet of water, trailing Lake Oahe on the border of North and South Dakota, which has 17.1 million acre feet, and two others in the same area. In terms of sheer size, Lake Mead easily leads the pack with a capacity of 26.1 million acre-feet; Lake Powell in Arizona and Utah is second with 24.3 million.
• March 2, 2014 11:16 Party at Cabo Wabo: Sammy Hagar's Cabo Wabo Cantina inside the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywoodis hosting a viewing party for NBC’s "The Voice" contestants, Ryan Whyte Maloney and Austin Ellis, with live performances by both. The party kicks off at 8 p.m.
• March 2, 2014 09:49 Lucky Leprechaun at Aliante: Aliante Hotel + Casino is getting its St. Patrick's Day celebrations underway early this year, with a Lucky Leprechaun gaming promo running all-month long. Players Club members can earn prizes daily, along with up to $17,000 in cash at the end of the month, by playing slots, table games, or wagering at the race and sports book now through March 27. Public drawings will be held for winners at 9:15 p.m. from March 28 through March 30. See the players club for more information.
• March 2, 2014 09:12 Poker Tourney Today: Today's Sunday LVA poker tournament begins at noon PST/3 pm EST. It's free to enter and we're playing for $30 in Amazon gift cards. Go to Play.LasVegasAdvisor.com or click through the link on the home page to sign up, beginning one hour before the start.
• March 1, 2014 22:25 Visitor Count Off to Fast Start: Coming off the disappointing .1% decline in the visitor for 2013, Las Vegas got off to a roaring start in 2014. January visitation was up 8.2% over the same month last year, partly bolstered by a 10.4% increase in convention attendees.
• March 1, 2014 22:24 Twofer Goofer: We've had some inquiries about our email to LVA members informing that the March issue was available online. One of the teasers cited a "a twofer for Cosmo’s Wicked Spoon buffet," which was an error. It's not that the deal isn't available; it is as a perk for United Airlines flyers. However, the explanation appeared in the February issue, not March.
• March 1, 2014 10:04 The Linq Opens Phase II: The full pedestrian area of The Linq opened without fanfare yesterday afternoon. Only the front section had previously been accessible. Many of the bars and shops are still are not accessible; however, the big Yard House is now operating. The wheel is not expected to open until April. The entire opening schedule for The Linq is detailed in the March Las Vegas Advisor.
• March 1, 2014 09:48 St. Baldrick's Day: It's the annual fundraising day in the fight against childhood cancer, and several Las Vegas venues are participating with sponsored head-shaving events, including Vinyl at Hard Rock, which is hosting Rock ‘n’ Shave from 11 a.m., with free live performances by Sin City Sinners throughout the day. Rí Rá Las Vegas, located inside The Shoppes at Mandalay Place, hosts its third annual St. Baldrick’s head-shaving event starting at noon and is the site of the shaving of Eating Las Vegas author Al Mancini's Mohawk. Local barbers from The Art of Shaving at Mandalay Place will volunteer their time to give the haircuts, which will continue throughout the day. Another head-shaving event will be hosted by McMullen's Pub, across from the Orleans.