Category: Jackie Brett


Date: Feb. 18, 2018

BY: Jackie Brett



        Celebrated chef, author and television personality, Giada De Laurentiis, has opened her second Las Vegas restaurant, Pronto by Giada, at Caesars Palace serving De Laurentiis’ signature California-Italian fare made in an abbreviated time in a casual format. Pronto is situated across from Rao’s and the Bacchanal Buffet, and at the base of the new Convention Center escalators. Pronto features everything from pastries to paninis to cakes by the slice, a specialty coffee program, expansive wine list, and an Italian-inspired retail space.

            Based out of Durham, N.C., Pronto is the first eatery in Nevada to introduce Counter Culture Coffee to Las Vegas. The third-wave coffee program brings quality and freshness to the forefront, while responsibly sourcing their beans. The coffee menu also features traditional drip brews, nitro options and eye-catching foam art.

            Pronto’s open space décor features natural elements such as wood and marble quartz, coupled with pops of color in the Italian-inspired tile and chairs, and personalized artwork like a neon sign of De Laurentiis’ famous saying, “eat a little bit of everything and not a lot of anything.” Hours are daily from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., with the wine bar opening at 11 a.m.



            New York developer Steve Witkoff, who last summer bought the never-completed blue-tinted Fontainebleau on the Strip for $600 million, plans to turn it into The Drew Las Vegas and open in late 2020. When completed, it’s reported the 3,900-room resort will offer three different hotel experiences: The JW Marriott; the exclusive boutique chain Edition; and the Drew. More amenities will include 20 restaurants, a large pool deck, casino, convention space, and connection to the Las Vegas Convention Center expansion to the south.



        The Mob Museum downtown has debuted its major first-floor renovation, which includes a brand-new exhibition space called Organized Crime Today, focusing on the modernization and evolution of organized crime in the present day. Also new are two experiential spaces: Use of Force Training Experience and Crime Lab, which present methods employed by law enforcement to apprehend and prosecute criminals and their organizations. These new exhibits and experiences represent the first phase of the Museum’s largest capital improvement project since opening on Feb. 14, 2012.

            The Organized Crime Today Exhibition, which is included in the general admission price, features artifacts, graphics and a large, interactive, 17-foot-wide Global Networks touchscreen wall, bringing the story of organized crime into the present day. In addition to covering present-day rackets, Organized Crime Today explores active crime groups — such as outlaw motorcycle gangs, Yakuza, Mexican cartels, Eastern European mafias and MS-13—and the international array of law enforcement agencies that seek to eradicate them. Exhibits and corresponding digital content on the Museum’s website will be regularly updated to reflect the latest global organized crime developments.
            The price for admission to the Use of Force Training Experience, which places guests in the shoes of law enforcement officers, is $12 in addition to regular admission. Admission to the Crime Lab, which is a hands-on, interactive exploration of five different forensic science topics, is $7 plus regular admission. An All-Access Pass, combining general admission and both experiences, is $41.95, with special reduced pricing for Nevada residents, law enforcement, military, teachers, seniors and students.



            Contemporary music singer-songwriter-musician, Alanis Morissette has set a performance date at the intimate Pearl Concert Theater at the Palms on Friday, June 22 8 p.m. Tickets start at $59.

            Morissette became a household name in the early ’90s with the release of her third album “Jagged Little Pill” in 1995, which gave her multiple Grammy awards, including Album of the Year, Best Rock Album, and Best Rock Song for “You Oughta Know.” With more than 60 million albums sold worldwide, Morissette has earned 14 Canadian Juno Awards, seven Grammy Awards plus 14 nominations, a Golden Globe nomination, and in 2015, was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame. Alanis has had acting roles in “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “Dogma,” “Sex and the City,” “Weeds,” “Up All Night,” and appeared as a celebrity guest mentor on “The Voice.”



        Eureka! opened on Fremont Street across from the El Cortez with an industrial and modern design featuring nearly 5,000 square feet encompassing a spacious interior and patio. Opening hours are 11 a.m. on weekdays and 10 a.m. on weekends and run until midnight or 1 a.m. accordingly.

            The new 170-seat restaurant is offering such dishes as Osso Buco Riblets, Fresno Fig Burger and Loco Moco as well as weekend brunch highlights Bread Pudding French Toast and Steak N’ Eggs. Eureka! features an elevated collection of the best local craft beers including Hop Nuts, Lovelady Brewing, Able Baker and more, along with small batch whiskeys and classic cocktails.



            The Raiders won’t even be playing in Las Vegas for a couple years but now the team’s past, present and future is housed under one roof for all to see. The Raiders preview center, which is like a mini-museum with memorabilia including championship rings and trophies, opened in Town Square this month.

        The Raider Image, the team’s official store, has retail outlets at Town Square and at Galleria at Sunset in Henderson.



        The 2018 Monster Jam World Finals® XIX will take place March 23-24 at Sam Boyd Stadium at 6:30 p.m. each day. Fans can get up-close-and-personal with the Monster Jam® trucks and drivers as they are granted more fan access to the stars of the show than any other live event.

            The Pit Party on Friday 2:30-5 p.m. and Saturday 10:30 a.m.-5 p.m. features more than 100 Monster Jam trucks and drivers, including all Monster Jam World Finals® competitors. Drivers sign autographs during designated times. Other highlights include interactive displays, various kids’ activities, Graffiti Zone, thrill acts, Monster Jam Ride Truck, photo opportunities, Main Stage interviews and contests, and more. Admission is free to ticket holders.

            Monster Jam® competitors are trained at Monster Jam University. Monster Jam® trucks are custom-designed machines approximately 12 feet tall and about 12 feet wide, which sit atop 66-inch-tall tires and weigh a minimum of 10,000 pounds and are capable of speeds of up to 100 miles per hour. The trucks can fly a distance up to 125 to 130 feet and up to 35 feet in the air.



         Pasquale Rotella, Founder and CEO of Insomniac, the production company behind North America’s largest three-day dance music festival EDC (Electric Daisy Carnival), has declared this year’s theme “Kinetic Love,” and also revealed the special artwork.

        EDC will return for three nights May 18-20 at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway with new and over-the-top stage designs, whimsical costumed performers, full-sized carnival rides, interactive art installations, firework displays and more.

            The 22nd edition of the festival will feature a lineup of more than 250 top dance music artists from across the globe on eight stages. Headliners will include Armin Van Buuren, Afrojack, Diplo, Kaskade, Marshmello, Martin Garrix, Tiësto, Zedd and many more acts. Check the website for the full lineup.

            EDC this year will feature the inaugural Camp EDC program, where camping ticket holders will have the unique opportunity to join an expanded festival experience with full lodging, interactive activities, and an exclusive Thursday night kickoff party featuring Excision, Habstrakt and G Jones before the gates officially open.



        Two-time Grammy-winner, John Prine will return to Las Vegas for a special performance at the Westgate International Theater on Wednesday, Dec. 12 at 8 p.m. The celebrated singer, songwriter and performer will release his highly-anticipated new album, “The Tree of Forgiveness,” on April 13 on his own independent label, Oh Boy Records. Produced by Grammy Award-winning Dave Cobb, the album is Prine’s first featuring new material in more than 13 years. Every concert ticket sold will include a CD copy of “The Tree of Forgiveness” upon its release. Ticket range is $49 to $99.



            The Orleans will bring country and rock performers Sawyer Brown, Uncle Kracker, Loverboy, and Burton Cummings to The Orleans Showroom with 8 p.m. performances.

            Formed in the early ‘80s, Sawyer Brown headlines Friday, March 2. The band has released 23 albums and 50 chart singles. Detroit-based singer-songwriter and performer Uncle Kracker, who kicked off his musical career as a DJ in Kid Rock’s Twisted Brown Trucker Band, follows on Saturday, March 3. Tickets for both shows start at $34.95.

            At the end of the month, Loverboy will be center stage on Friday, March 30. In their more than 30-year career, Loverboy has sold more than 10 million albums. Tickets start at $44.95. On Saturday, March 31, Burton Cummings, who began his career in the 1960s as lead singer of the Canadian rock band The Guess Who, will perform. As a solo artist, Cummings earned 80 Platinum and Gold record awards with hits like “Stand Tall.” Tickets start at $39.95.



            Grammy Award-winning rapper 2 Chainz recently debuted his exclusive 2018 Drai’s LIVE residency at Drai’s Nightclub atop The Cromwell. The multi-platinum artist will return to the rooftop club several times throughout 2018, including March 17, April 7 and June 16.


            The renewed magic show, “Xavier Mortimer’s Magical Dream” in the Sin City Theatre at Planet Hollywood, is offering a complimentary upgrade to VIP seating for university students during Spring Break from Thursday, March 1 through Sunday, April 1. Internationally-famed magician, Mortimer’s 70-minute show at 7 p.m. nightly except Friday is comprised of more than 14 acts and an unconventional cast of characters.  General admission tickets are $49.


            The premier event for bodybuilding and fitness enthusiasts, Joe Weider’s Olympia Fitness & Performance Weekend, will return to the Orleans Arena Sept. 13-15. The Mr. Olympia contest – an annual bodybuilding competition sanctioned by the International Federation of Bodybuilders Professional League (IFBB Pro League) – will bring fitness and bodybuilding superstars, competing for the Mr. Olympia Sandow Trophy. Tickets are available from $75.  

            The Golden Tiki in Chinatown will hold a special celebration for Don The Beachcomber’s birthday on Thursday, Feb. 22 from 9 p.m. to midnight. The tribute is to the founder of tiki cocktail culture Earnest Raymond Beaumont Gantt, who would be 111 if alive today. Admission is free. The party will feature several of Las Vegas’ preeminent bartenders and a special performance by house band The Sharps. Guests are encouraged to dress in Hawaiian shirts and tiki wear.



            The LINQ Promenade and participating restaurants and bars are offering guests to “compete” in the first LINQ Games – a two-week promotion through Sunday, Feb. 25 offering televised competitions, drink specials and entertainment discounts. Guests who purchase drinks at five locations and receive a stamp at each on their “LINQ Games card,” will receive $10 off an anytime ticket to ride the High Roller and be eligible for a chance to win a $100-value grand prize that includes gift cards from each participating restaurant and bar – valued at $100 total.



            Brooklyn Bowl has revealed the lineup for the second installment of the local musicians’ performance series at the center-Strip venue, along with new sponsor Boston Beer Company’s Sam ’76. The Neon Valley Showcase’s sophomore installment will be Thursday, March 8 at 7 p.m. featuring Chop 808 & Itsrayiguess, Von Kim and Ekoh with DJ AR performing before, between, and after the three other select artists’ sets. The showcase is free to attend and open to the public for all ages.



        The city of Las Vegas will host the 2018 Las Vegas Bluegrass Festival Saturday, March 24 from 2 to 8 p.m. featuring music, food, craft vendors, etc. at Centennial Hills Park, 7101 N. Buffalo Drive. The all-ages public event is free.

        The festival lineup will feature bluegrass bands including Blue Canyon Boys, Run Boy Run, David Luning and Trout Steak Revival. The Southern Nevada Bluegrass Music Society will provide strolling musicians between sets as well as sponsor the instrument petting zoo. All instruments will be given away as prizes at the end of the festival.



            Reality star Brett Raymer of Animal Planet’s hit show “Tanked” and owner of Donut Mania is opening a fourth Las Vegas location. A grand opening for the Summerlin location at 1930 Village Center Circle Ste 4 is scheduled for Sunday, March 4 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. with a Celebrity Donut Olympics theme. Las Vegas headliners, entertainers and media will compete in doughnut challenges. The event is free and open to the public.



            “Las Vegas Neon: Dreams & Delusions,” a presentation by Scholar in Residence Christoph Ribbat, will take place on Tuesday, Feb. 20 at the Ne10 building located at 1001 W. Bonanza Road on the Review-Journal campus. The free event is part of The Neon Museum’s Times of the Signs Lecture Series with a reception beginning at 6 p.m., followed by the lecture and question-and-answer session at 7 p.m. Ribbat is Professor of American Studies at Paderborn University in Germany.



        In the spirit of this year’s festival of Purim, a Jewish holiday that commemorates the salvation of its people, various local Jewish organizations are teaming up to present the inaugural Queen Esther’s Ball on Saturday, March 3 from 8 p.m. to midnight at The Center. Open to the public, the colorful all-gender costume party will feature refreshing libations, an assortment of dessert, live DJ entertainment and a costume contest with cash prizes. Tickets are $36.



       The Las Vegas Country Club, a private, member-owned golf course behind the Las Vegas Convention Center, was sold for an undisclosed price to Samick Music Corp. It features a two-story, 54,000-square-foot clubhouse. The club has an interesting history and was frequented by such stars as Elvis Presley, Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra.

            The golf course opened for play in 1967 and was designed by Ed Ault, who is credited with many design elements now common on golf courses nationwide. It underwent an extensive, $5.4 million renovation in 2009. The course has hosted 20 PGA Tour and LPGA Tour events.



            The 17-year-old Palms’ marquee sign on W. Flamingo Road is getting replaced by an all-digital message board later this year as part of a property-wide $485 million renovation project. Each of the 14-foot-tall PALMS letters were removed by a crane.

            The Howard Hughes Corporation® will break ground on Las Vegas Ballpark at Downtown Summerlin® on Friday, March 23. The 10,000-fan capacity baseball stadium will be the future home of the Las Vegas 51s, the city’s professional baseball team of the Pacific Coast League (PCL).

            Mountain’s Edge Master Planned Community will hold its annual Spring Garage Sale and a day of outdoor shopping event Saturday, March 3 with sales at Exploration Park from 7 a.m. to noon and homes sales from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. More than 270 homeowners will sell items in the Exploration Park parking lot and at their homes. A digital map will be available the morning of the event on Mountain’s Edge website under “Activities” tab.

         A watercolor by famed Naval artist Arthur Beaumont depicting the Baker atomic test, which took place as part of Operation Crossroads in 1946 on Bikini Atoll, is now on display at the National Atomic Testing Museum in the Pacific Testing Gallery. The painting, which once hung in the National Gallery, is on a two-year loan from California’s Jonathan Art Foundation, and was facilitated by Arthur Beaumont’s son Geoffrey, who lives in Las Vegas. 

            The next Taste & Learn four-course wine dinner at Ferraro’s Italian Restaurant and Wine Bar will be held on Saturday, March 3 at 5 p.m. Two wines from Veneto and two from Tuscany while be featured. Tickets are $65; call 702-364-5300.

            On Fremont Street, Commonwealth and Park on Fremont are inviting university students to celebrate Spring Break with drink specials including a buy one, get one free promotion on all well drinks and draft beers for college students with a valid student I.D. from 4-7 p.m. daily throughout the month of March, excluding St. Patrick’s Day. Park on Fremont will also have happy hour menu items for $6.