MGM Resorts International
Friday, Oct. 4, 2013 | 6 p.m.
As we change from summer heat to cooler fall weather, it’s a weekend for doing good. But Frank Marino, the ultimate Strip Diva and star of “Divas Las Vegas” at the Quad, will still feel the heat as he’s roasted in an all-star showdown at the Stratosphere tonight.
Frankie Moreno, who headlines there, has given up his showroom to his name-alike counterpart, who will either wince at the savage attacks or laugh along good-naturedly at the putdowns and pokes from an array of entertainers. I’ve sharpened my pen to cook up some saucy surprises on Frank’s never-ending search for eternal youth in the field of plastic surgery. (Chris Phillips o Zowie Bowie and former Mayor Oscar Goodman were previous roastees.)
Many of the celebrity roasters, including Plaza headliner Louie Anderson and the 11-piece band, are going in drag — boys will be girls and girls will be boys. Expect hysterical material in between dancers, production numbers and ribald revelry. Got to get into costume now! Frank’s show will benefit his favorite charity, Make-a-Wish Foundation, so the barbs and arrows go for a good cause.
Cirque du Soleil has had a mighty impact on our Strip entertainment scene, but, on Saturday, cast and crews of the company’s eight shows start the next leg of its charity One Drop to provide the world with safe water.
UFC Hall of Famer Forrest Griffin and restaurateur Jenna Morton walk a 5.6-mile journey along the Strip from Town Square to Mandalay Bay. Mayor Carolyn Goodman, Mandalay Bay President Chuck Bowling and Cirque Senior VP of Las Vegas shows Jerry Nadal are taking part starting 8 a.m. Saturday.
That should work up an appetite, and the 4th Annual Food & Wine All-Star Weekend of celebrity chefs will satisfy it with eight mouth-watering events. Joel Robuchon, Michael Mina and Shawn McClain are host chefs at MGM Grand, Bellagio and Aria, and I’m finally going to taste Shawn’s Five 50 Pizza palace in Aria. Joel and Michael will be two of the judges for the poolside Burger Bash at MGM Grand with 10 of the casino resort’s chefs competing.
It all kicks off with a party at Aria tonight with taste treats by Heather Zheng (Shibuya), Ho Chee Boon (Hakkasan), Akira Back (Yellowtail) and Aria star chefs star chefs Julian Serrano, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Sirio Maccioni and Masa Takayama. The schedule of events: FoodandWine.com/promo/events.
It’s First Friday downtown, the amazing monthly event in the Arts District that celebrates art, music and culture in Las Vegas. Unfortunately, organizers have to combat false rumors about the festival being unsafe. First Friday sees tens of thousands of people enjoying themselves with friends and family with almost zero incidents or trouble.
“The implication that the festival is overrun by gang activity and unruly and drunken teenagers is false, and the damage due to erroneous reports, which don’t differentiate between the First Friday event and problems that may happen in the wee hours of the morning miles away from our event, must not be taken lightly,” I was told. “Our event remains incident free each month.”
I want to give a shout-out to my friend Tony Sacca celebrating 50 years in show business as one of our hardest-working entertainers. To mark the milestone, he trained for 90 days and lost 18 pounds to dance with the handsome hunks of Thunder From Down Under at Excalibur.
He filmed it with guests including Kelly Clinton Holmes for his weekly, hourlong “Las Vegas Rocks Variety Show” in Railhead Showroom at Boulder Station. It airs on local TV outlets and at RadioactiveBroadcasting.com. This week, it also gets a primetime showing on Vegas TV Cable 14.
Now let’s see why Las Vegas rocks with our weekly Royal Robin Rundown:
FRIDAY, OCT. 4
It’s the final weekend of Motley Crue’s “An Intimate Evening in Hell” mini-residency at the Joint in the Hard Rock Hotel.
Remember Peggy Sue? Winter Dance Party, the official live and authentic re-creation of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper’s final tour, is at South Point all weekend.
Nashville Unplugged features Blake Shelton and Toby Keith songwriter Bobby Pinson at Rocks Lounge in Red Rock Resort.
The Blonde Divas perform in “Las Vegas Rocks Variety Show.”
Country singer -songwriter and guitarist Ray Price is at Silverton Casino Lodge.
Frank Marino is in the hot seat at Andy Walmsley’s “Showbiz Roast.” Who is who under the wigs and makeup?
Talk-show funnyman George Lopez is at the Mirage for two nights.
David Spade is at the Venetian for two nights.
Quinn Dahle is at Bonkerz Comedy Club in Primm Valley for two nights.
OF SPECIAL NOTE
Tickets go on sale for seven-time Grammy Award-winning trio Lady Antebellum at Mandalay Bay Events Center next March 21.
Tickets go on sale for “Evita,” at Smith Center for the Performing Arts from Nov. 26-31.
Tickets go on sale for Lisa Lampanelli at Pearl at the Palms on Jan. 18.
The Epicurean Charitable Foundation hosts its 12th Annual M.E.N.U.S. fundraiser at Luxor with Jabbawockeez’s “Prism” and then the 30+ restaurant pool dine-around and after-party at LAX.
The 4th Food & Wine All-Star Weekend is at Bellagio, Aria and MGM Grand.
The Lucky Rice festival celebrates Asian culture at the Cosmopolitan through Sunday.
The 13th Annual Las Vegas Bike Fest with performances by Blue Oyster Cult, Foghat and Joe Nichols is at Cashman Center all weekend.
The Freakling Bros. Horror Shows kick off their 21st anniversary with their R-rated Trilogy of Terror at North AMC Theaters.
Opportunity Village opens today and transforms the Magical Forest into HallOVeen every weekend through month’s end.
The Disney Junior Live Tour of Pirate & Princess Adventure sails into Orleans Arena for five shows.
“War Horse,” the five-time Tony Award winner, continues at Smith Center through Sunday.
First Friday celebrates its 11th anniversary.
NASCAR bullring practice and pints races are at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
The American Quarter Horse Association Novice Championships are at South Point all weekend.
The “Beverly Hills Confidential” presentation and book signing is at the Mob Museum for two days.
SATURDAY, OCT. 5
EDM event Sensation features host Mr. White, Sebastien Leger, Sunnery James & Ryan Marciano and Michael Woods at MGM Grand Garden Arena. Dress to impress in all white.
The Temptations, with Otis Williams, continue their 40 years of performances at Orleans Showroom.
Lonestar is at Primm Valley.
“American Idol” Season 10 finalist Casey Abrams is at Suncoast for two nights.
Icon for Hire is at Vinyl in the Hard Rock Hotel.
High Tea with Toni Morrell is at Chrome Showroom at Santa Fe Station.
OF SPECIAL NOTE
Walk the Strip for water conservation worldwide at Cirque du Soleil’s second-annual One Drop “Walk for Water” from South Point to Mandalay Bay.
NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Night of Champions with an on-track driver autograph session is at LVMS.
The Burger Bash is at MGM Grand pool.
Vegas TV Cable 14 airs “Las Vegas Rocks Variety Show.”
The inaugural Miss Asian Las Vegas Pageant is at Tropicana with 2012 Miss Nevada USA Jade Kelsall among the guests. The winner competes in the 2014 Miss Asian America Pageant.
Sage the Gemini is at Haze in Aria.
SUNDAY, OCT. 6
Depeche Mode is at Pearl at the Palms.
The Avett Brothers are at Boulevard Pool in the Cosmopolitan.
Senses Fail is at Hard Rock Live on the Strip.
OF SPECIAL NOTE
NASCAR Sunday Shootout with Thunder, Legend, Bandit and Outlaw cars compete in the INEX national points race at LVMS.
Guests can drink Liquid Pool Lounge at Aria dry as it closes for the season.
Drink up and enjoy your weekend as summer temperatures vanish and are replaced by welcoming autumn breezes. We’ll have reports and photos of the stars at work and play, then next week our sit-down interviews with Shania Twain as she plans her Oct. 15 return to Caesars Palace and Donny & Marie Osmond as they celebrate the extension of their Flamingo shows for another 14 months.
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
Follow Robin Leach on Twitter at Twitter.com/Robin_Leach.
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Palms Casino Resort has come a long way since its "Real World" debut in 2002. The boutique property features three distinct towers and a diverse mix of bars and restaurants across a 95,000-square-foot casino.
Palms, which features more than 1,200 rooms and fantasy suites, is currently undergoing a multi-million dollar transformation that will encompass an Ivory Tower room and suite redesign, new culinary additions, re-imagined gaming spaces and new, distinctive nightlife experiences.
In addition to newly designed rooms, during the first phase of the renovation, Palms will welcome Heraea, a high-energy American restaurant and lounge, and XISHI, a pan-Asian restaurant and lounge.
Fantasy Suites include the Hardwood Suite, the only hotel room in the world with its own basketball court.
Other amenities include the all-new Cantor Gaming® race and sports book, one of the few sports books in Las Vegas to include a poker room; SOCIAL; Scarlet; Chocolat Bistro; tonic bar; ghostbar; Pearl Concert Theater; Moon Nightclub; N9NE Steakhouse; Nove Italiano; Simon Restaurant & Lounge; Palms Pool & Bungalows; Kim Vō Salon; Drift Spa & Hammam; Brenden Theatres, a 14-theatre cineplex and more than 60,000 square-feet of meeting space.