The Las Vegas Connection

The Las Vegas Connection

By Bart Torres

March 26, 2012 - April 1, 2012

Golden Gate Getting Major Overhaul and Expansion

Another downtown property, the Golden Gate is in for a major revamp and expansion; the first in 50 years. When it opened in 1906 at One Fremont Street its phone number was 1! The new look to the Golden Gate will preserve its authentic Vegas vibe while adding a 35,000-square-foot, five-story luxury tower with 16 suites, including two penthouses that will take over the entire 5th floor. A larger casino floor with a high-limit gaming pit will feature sexy dancing dealers. The new lobby will display memorabilia from the hotel’s early days.  As far as the rates go, currently during construction, rooms are listed $39 for midweek stays and $79 for weekends. When renovations are completed, hopefully by July 2012, guests can expect to pay around $80 to $160 per night. It’s business as usual at the Golden Gate for players with the launch of their “$20,000 Super Spring Points” promotion for club members that kicks off April 1 and continues through June 30, 2012. Everyday, the top point earner wins $100 in Free Slot Play and every week, the top point earner will receive $250 in Free Slot Play. Now if you are lucky enough to be the top earner of the month, you get $500 in free play. A grand prize of $5,000 will be awarded to the number one overall point earner at the end of the promotion. The top 100 point earners will be automatically entered into a drawing where $2,000 in Free Slot Play will be awarded on July 1, 2012. You must be present to win! Check with the club booth for complete details.


Line up Your Reservations at South Point for Kentucky Derby

Now is as good a time as ever to reserve your stay at South Point for their 2012 Kentucky Derby Party Package for $209. Included in the price is a two-night stay (May 3-4 or May 4-5), handicapping seminar in the Race Book, two buffets, four cocktails, free access to the Fitness Center and admission for two to the Kentucky Derby Viewing Party. Reservations must be made by April 4. Call (866) 791-7626 or fire off an email to


Kodak Moment at Bellagio’s Conservatory & Botanical Gardens

One of the favorite free attractions you should not miss is to take in the seasonal changes at Bellagio’s Conservatory & Botanical Gardens. On display now is this year’s colorful “Dutch Village” spring exhibit featuring a 26-foot-tall rotating windmill and extravagant live floral decorations, waterfalls and ceiling-hung-hand painted parasols. On view through May 13, the exhibit is complimentary and open daily, 24/7 with musical performances taking place in the Victorian Gazebo from 5 p.m.-6 p.m.


MGM Hosting Grand Challenge 11 Poker Tournament

Opened exclusively to Members of M Life, MGM Resorts International Reward Program the Grand Challenge 11 Poker Tournament will be held April 19-May 6 at the MGM Grand’s 23-table poker room.  Buy-ins range from $150 to $1,600 depending on the game you want to play. Registration begins Thursday, April 19 at 9 a.m. Poker novices and the more experienced players are invited to take a seat in this exciting event. More information can be found at


Cantor Gaming Happy to Take Charge Cards for Placing Bets

Cantor Gaming operates seven race and sports book in Las Vegas and is making it easier for placing your bets by accepting credit and debit cards. At this time Visa, Master Card and Discover cards are accepted, but American Express is not.


Fourth Annual Wine & Jazz Fest Coming to the Golden Nugget

Returning to the Nugget is its Fourth Annual Spring Wine & Jazz Fest April 13-15. The three-day event features more than 250 wines, a jazz festival, mingling with winemakers, owners and fellow wine lovers, wine tasting, a poolside reception, cuisine pairings, silent and live auctions and more It’s $235 to attend all three of the events with individual tickets also available A discount of $199 is available when booked in advance. A number of events with an additional charge are also offered. For reservations call (866) 946-5336 or visit


John Lennon Educational Tour Bus Returns to The Mirage

Once again the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus will be making a stop at The Mirage Hotel & Casino April 11-14 from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. giving guests the opportunity to interact with the latest in recording and video technology including products from Avid, Epiphone, Apple and more. The bus is a non-profit recording studio and HD production facility that travels year-round allowing students of all ages to learn multimedia experiences. Three on-board engineers will teach students how to write, perform, record and produce original songs, produce and shoot music videos, documentaries and complete a broadcast quality music video, all in one day. The best part of this educational event is that it is free! Just show up and get in line for an experience of a lifetime. You will find the bus located at the Mirage’s Main Porte Cochere.


Abbey Road Traveling Experience on Display at Madame Tussauds

Madame Tussauds Las Vegas located at The Venetian has added a new host of characters to their outstanding wax museum with the life-like figures of The Beatles Abbey Road Traveling Experience album cover recreated in wax. The interactive exhibit featuring replicas of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and George Harrison will be on display through May 28. Your cameras are always welcome at Madame Tussuads!


Rod Stewart: The Hits Returns for Spring Engagements at The Colosseum at Caesars

A variety of special exclusive packages have been introduced for the return of Rod Stewarts: The Hits upcoming performances this spring at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace. Valid for March 28, 31, April 1, 4, 6 and 7, the Hot Legs Package is priced at $1,250 per ticket and comes with a front row seat, pre-show dinner at a Caesars restaurant, one free drink and a variety of other goodies. Going for a more reasonable $450 per tickets, check out the Celtic Package which includes seating in rows 2-6 of the front orchestra and some other perks. VIP packages are available on line at, keyword “Rod Stewart or at the Box Office from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.


Donny Osmond Sidelined from Flamingo Las Vegas

One of the most entertaining shows on the Strip, Donny & Marie at Flamingo Las Vegas will be without Donny for a while. Vocal fatigue is the reported reason that Donny will be taking some time off and leaving the show until further notice. In the meantime, Marie will be joined on stage for duets by Shane Baker. Disappointed fans holding advanced tickets to see the famous brother and sister performing together may contact the hotel’s box office for refunds.


Curfew Imposed for Animals on the Strip

Everyone is aware that kids under 18 have a curfew for wandering the Las Vegas Strip. Well, now that curfew is in place for our four-legged friends. The County Commission has voted unanimously to ban animals, even accompanied by their owners on pedestrian crossover bridges and sidewalks from noon to 5 a.m. each day. Restricted areas include the Strip from Sahara Avenue to Sunset Road and 200 yards on each side of the Strip. Exempt from the new ordinance are service dogs. Fines for ignoring the new law is $100 for the first offense, $250 for the second and $500 for repeat offenses.


Hard Bodies Showcased in 2012 NPC Jay Cutler Desert Classic at Palms Casino Resort

The Pearl inside Palms Casino Resort will be the headquarters for the second annual Ageless Forever and Martini Tan 2012 NPC Jay Cutler Desert Classic on Saturday, April 7. The cost to see the prejudging at 10 a.m. is $24. The finals get underway at 7 p.m. with tickets priced at $34 and $39 for VIP seating. The contest showcases men’s and women’s body building, women’s figure and women’s bikini events. Four-time Mr. Olympia, Jay Cutler will be onsite for a meet and greet and autograph signing session. Vendors will be selling related apparel and supplements during the event.


Zipline Attraction Donating all Revenues Wednesday Night to Aid The Animal Foundation Causes

One of the most exciting events for downtown dwellers is to suit up for an exhilarating zipline ride. Operated by Flightlinez, the outdoor attraction will give you the ride of a lifetime, in fact, you will travel more than 800 feet from start to finish. No matter how old you are, based on a few restrictions, all ages are welcome as long as you are between 60 and 250 pounds and no taller than 6’7” tall. Kids under 18 meeting these requirements must have a waiver signed by a parent. While the ride is open from noon until midnight (2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays), the most spectacular view is after dark when you will get the real effects of the glitter gulch lights. Depending on when you go, the waiting time could be up to 30 minutes. The line forms at 425 Fremont Street where an elevator takes you up to the roof where the zipline takes off from. You can use this waiting time watching other brave souls before you start your own journey. The price of a ticket is $15 before 6 p.m. and $20 for evening rides. All revenues from ticket sales this Wednesday, March 28 will be donated to The Animal Foundation a refuge to 50,000 animals a year. Representatives from The Animal Foundation and Dog Ambassadors will be onsite from 5-8 p.m. and comedian/magician Nathan Burton will make an appearance at 7 p.m. Supporters purchasing an all day pass for $50 will receive one free ticket to Burton’s show at Flamingo Las Vegas.


Whiskey Licker Bar Opens at Binion’s Gambling Hall

A new watering hole, Binion’s Whiskey Licker Bar, the first outdoor bar on Fremont Street is now open. The layout is such that guests can enjoy the action going on at Fremont Street Experience from the best viewing spot in the area. Whiskey Licker operating hours will be seasonal. Currently they are open from 10 a.m. to 1 a.m. daily serving coffee and tea favorites plus a variety of alcoholic beverages.


April Fools Weekend Marks Debut of Brad Garrett’s Comedy Club at MGM Grand

Coming up April Fools’ Weekend is the opening of Brad Garrett’s Comedy Club at MGM Grand. The intimate 288-seat comedy club will feature Garrett, who will perform several times a year. Other great comedians will take center stage throughout the week. Show times are Sunday-Thursday at 8 p.m., Friday-Saturday at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. with tickets going for $39, $49 and $59 plus tax and fees. Prices for Garret’s appearances are $59 and $79. For reservations, call (800) 745-3000 or through the MGM Grand box office outlet. Tickets sales are limited to eight per person.


JW Marriott Las Vegas and Rampart Casino Offering Family Easter and Passover Dining

The JW Marriott Las Vegas Resort & Spa and The Rampart Casino’s restaurants will be offering Easter and Passover menus from Friday, April 6 to Easter Sunday, April 8. At the Rampart Buffet, a Passover dinner will be available from 4 to 9 p.m., April 6-7 ($16.99 with Rampart Rewards Card and $18.99 without the card) and an all-day Easter Brunch will be served April 8 for the same price.  At the Marriott’s Ceres, a buffet brunch ($52 for adults and $24 for children) will be served at 9 a.m., 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. For the little ones there will be an Easter Egg hunt, photos with the Easter bunny, face painting and balloon creations. For reservations, call (702) 869-7381.

Check with resorts for all current offers published. Hotels have all rights and may cancel or modify at anytime. On your drive up to Vegas tune your radio to The Highway FM 98 & 99 for my up-to-date Las Vegas reports. GOOD LUCK!

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