By Judy Thorburn This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Owner/Editor in Chief/writer - Las Vegas Round The Clock

Owner/Editor in Chief/writer - The Flick Chicks
Director of Communications - Nevada Film Alliance

Monte Carlo Plaza Hosts National Dance Day Event

MGM Resorts hosted a Las Vegas National Dance Day event on Monte Carlo’s Plaza Saturday, July 26 at 1:30 p.m. Entertainers from various MGM Resorts properties joined employees and the general public at the newly renovated venue to celebrate National Dance Day which was launched in 2010 by “So You Think You Can Dance” co-creator and Dizzy Feet Foundation co-president Nigel Lythgoe.  National Dance Day is an annual celebration that takes place on the last Saturday in July. This grassroots campaign encourages Americans to embrace dance as a fun and positive way to maintain good health and fight obesity.

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National Dance Day
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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National Dance Day rehearsing the moves
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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The MGM Resorts team
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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National Dance Day practicing the moves
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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FANTASY dancers
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Judy Thorburn with Sasha Farber
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

The cast of MGM Resorts’ “Inspiring Our World,” an MGM Resorts-led production of music, song and dance designed to convey the company’s mission, vision, and values intertwined with its  social responsibility philosophy, led members of the public in dance moves as Ladies of FANTASY, a knight and maiden from Tournament of Kings, Blue Man Group, and  members of Jabbawockeez joined in the fun. As a special treat, dance pro Sasha Farber from “Dancing With The Stars” performed a short dance routine.

The Venetian Announces Upcoming Engagement of “GEORGIA ON MY MIND: Celebrating The Music of Ray Charles”

The Venetian Las Vegas announced the limited engagement of GEORGIA ON MY MIND: THE MUSIC OF RAY CHARLES this fall during a special event for the media on Tuesday afternoon July 22 at The Venetian Theatre. This groundbreaking new show will feature a host of esteemed stars including Emmy award-winner Clint Holmes, 10-time Grammy award-winning vocal group TAKE 6, six-time Grammy nominee and DownBeat Vocalist of the Year Nnenna Freelon, and Stella Gospel Award and Grammy award-winning saxophone star Kirk Whalum. The show also introduces the Las Vegas Mass Choir, under the direction of James R. Smith and Edie Aikels, backed by the Las Vegas All-Star Big Band, under the direction of pianist and conductor, David Loeb. This dynamic ensemble of all-star performers will celebrate the genius of American music, Mr. Ray Charles, through GEORGIA ON MY MIND, in the Venetian Theatre September 18 through October 29, 2014.

Georgia on my Mi 54258Georgia On My Mind cast
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Clint Holmes
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Nnenna Freelon
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Kirk Whalum and Clint Holmes
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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and Larry Rosen
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Valerie Ervin
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

GEORGIA ON MY MIND: Celebrating The Music of Ray Charles is produced and directed by award-winning music producer Larry Rosen and is part of his JAZZ ROOTS Concert Series. The current presentation at The Venetian Theatre is presented by producer Larry Rosen and entertainment executive/producer Peter Primont through GOMM Productions, LLC.

"Our mission is to honor Ray’s life and his music,” said producer Larry Rosen. “It is extremely important that people understand that this music, which was created in America by a diverse society, is celebrated all over the world. The music is a melding of blues, jazz, gospel, R&B, and lots of soul. It will make you clap your hands, move your body, and enjoy being alive.”

Joining Rosen on stage was Valerie Ervin, President of The Ray Charles Foundation, who stated, “We are honored to be a part of Ray Charles' legacy. When Larry called me with this spectacular venture that he is putting on and showing the world, it touched my heart so and I had to come out and see it for myself. We are looking forward to supporting this fantastic show and to it being a huge success.”  She then added, “I know Ray Charles is smiling down”.

 “We are excited to bring this unique show to The Venetian and to fans from around the world who visit Las Vegas,” said John Caparella, president and chief operating officer of The Venetian, The Palazzo, and Sands Expo. “It’s a joy to bring audiences back to the golden age of renowned artists performing great songs with a live big band and choir on a world-class stage. The artists in this performance have a combined 11 Grammys, and Vegas’ own Clint Holmes is making his return to the Las Vegas Strip after eight years. This is a celebration of the genius Ray Charles and an evening with GEORGIA ON MY MIND will be a night to remember.”

Ray Charles is an American treasure who transcended racism, cultural upheavals, and spread his gospel, blues, jazz and country sound around the world. Charles won every major award from the Georgia Hall of Fame to the Hollywood Walk of Fame, from the Kennedy Honors to a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, and was inducted into the Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame. This show celebrates his music.  Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased by calling The Venetian Box Office.

Local Entertainers Perform at July Edition of “Mondays Dark with Mark Shunock" Fundraiser for Safe House

The ninth edition of “Mondays Dark with Mark Shunock"  took place Monday evening, July 21, at Vinyl, inside the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. All of the proceeds from this month's charity event benefitted Safe House, which provides a safe haven for those facing domestic violence.

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Marc Shunock
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

The theme for the evening was “Classic Vegas” with entertainment provided by local performers who donated their time and talent in support of the worthy cause.  They included Mary Callanan of MAMMA MIA!; Justin Shandor of Million Dollar Quartet; comedian Geechy Guy; El Cortez headliner Peter Pavone; actress/singer Pia Zadora; singer Clint Holmes; Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra tribute artists Tony Felicetta and Dakota Horvath; dancer/choreographer Jennifer Romas; singer Laura Shaffer; Zowie Bowie’s Chris Phillips and electric violinist Lydia Ansel. Host Mark Shunock, who is a cast member of Rock of Ages also performed his rendition of “My Funny Valentine”.

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Bill Janisse and Jennifer Romas
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Peter Pavone
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Geechy Guy
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Justin Shandor
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

Lydia Ansel Chris Phillips Zowie Bowie Mondays Dark 9 54216
Lydia Ansel and Chris Phillips of Zowie Bowie
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Mary Callanan
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Pia Zadora
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

Tony Felicetta Dakota Horvath Mondays Dark 9 54146
Tony Felicetta and Dakota Horvath
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

Kenny Davidsen John Plows Chandler Judkins Jim DArrigo Mondays Dark 9 54122
Kenny Davidsen and band members
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Joy Schaefer and Hannah Dorfman
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

Notable red carpet arrivals included: Anthony Cools, Morea Reveen, Tiffany Wright, Bill Fayne, Pia Zadora, Michael Jeffries, Lydia Ansel, Chris Phillips, Marc Love Chemerys, Jennifer Romas, Jonathan Scott, Garrett Pattiani, Paul Johnson, Peter Pavone, Angela Rosen, Dave Bancroft, Ben Stone, Jasmine Trias, Garrett Pattiani, Chadwick Johnson, Maxine Gains, Kalani Queypo, Chandler Judkins, Diedra Bratten, Christina Shaw, Elisa Furr, Jason Tenner, Jerry Jones, Liz Clark, Nieve Malandra, Marc Love Chemerys, Marnie and Adrian Stone Vilaca, Michael Jeffries, Tiffany Engen, stage managers Joy Schaefer and Hannah Dorfman, band members Kenny Davidsen, Chandler Judkins, Jim D’Arrigo and John Plows.

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Rock of Ages cast member Tiffany Engen
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Hair stylist Peter Anthony and Stephanie Wynn
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Paul Johnson
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Marc Love Chemerys
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Liz Clark and Nieve Malandra
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Bill Fayne
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Singer Jerry Jones
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

Jason Tenner Jennifer Romas Mondays Dark 9 54153
Prince tribute artist Jason Tenner and dancer/choreographer Jennifer Romas
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Singers Jasmine Trias and Ben Stone
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Michael Jeffries and Pia Zadora
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Eliza Furr
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Tribute artist Christina Shaw
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

Chandler Judkins Deirdra Bratten Mondays Dark 9 54140
Musician Chandler Judkins and Dierdra Bratten
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

Chadwick Johnson Maxine Gains Kalani Queypo Mondays Dark 9 54126
Chadwick Johnson, Maxine Gains and Kalani Queypo
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

Brittany Wright Anthony Cools Morea Reveen Mondays Dark 9 54113
Brittany Wright, Anthony Cools and Morea Reveen
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

Bill Janisse Garrett Pattiani Mondays Dark 9 54112
Bill Janisse and Garrett Pattiani
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

Angela Rosen Dave Bancroft Mondays Dark 9 54130
Angela Rosen and Dave Bancroft
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

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Pia Zadora and Jonathan Scott
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

The next edition of Monday's Dark with Mark Shunock will take place on Monday, Aug. 18, inside Vinyl at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino with proceeds benefitting HIS LOVE STREET LAS VEGAS. The evenings theme will be “Soul Funkafied”.

At a ticket price of only $20 in advance or $30 at the door, the monthly event continues to be one of the best entertainment deals in Las Vegas.

Tickets can be purchased by visiting

SuperZoo, Pet Retail Industry Trade Show, Convenes at Mandalay Bay

SuperZoo, the pet retail industry’s most popular event in North America, gathered in Las Vegas at Mandalay Bay Convention Center,  Monday July 22 to Wednesday, July 24. The three day event featured hundreds of top suppliers and unique vendors, the widest variety of great new pet products,  expert led seminars that equip retailers with smart business strategies, resourceful ideas and fresh inspiration, keynote insights from ABC's Shark Tank co-star, entrepreneur Daymond John, crowd pleasing competitions, networking opportunities, and much much more. Below were a few of the highlights that took place during the trade show.

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Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

To celebrate the upcoming Jackson Galaxy Collection by Petmate, a cocktail reception was held on the evening of July 22 inside South Seas A at Mandalay Bay Convention Center with renowned cat behaviorist and star of Animal Planet's My Cat From Hell, Jackson Galaxy.  Galaxy, aka The Cat Daddy, was on hand to introduce Petmate's new line of toy products created especially for cats. Petmate and Jackson Galaxy have partnered to remake the cat play category based on a real-world understanding of cats and their natural behaviors and instincts. Galaxy is personally involved in the design of each product, from concept to packaging, using his unique philosophy of the ideal cat lifestyle, which he refers to as Cat Mojo: Hunt, Catch, Kill, Eat, Groom and Sleep.

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Jackson Galaxy
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn

The following night, on Wednesday, July 23 actor Anthony Anderson, star of the upcoming shows Black-ish on ABC and Food Network’s Eating America, joined the brand, “Chicken Soup for the Soul” at The Foundation Room in Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino to celebrate the launch of its newest titles, Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Dog Did What? and Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Cat Did What? by Amy Newmark.

 Anderson greeted guests as he arrived to the party, cracking jokes while making his way to a VIP (Very Important Pet Lovers) “green grass” carpet. He posed for photos with excited fans as well as Chicken Soup for the Soul execuives. Anderson and Newmark stopped to chat about their collaboration on an upcoming Chicken Soup for the Soul book that will spotlight the power of forgiveness. He mentioned that he will not only write the foreword but also help gather the heart-warming stories for which the brand is renowned and write his own anecdotal piece.

Chicken Soup for the Soul execs Sergeant Malarsie Xxon Amy Newmark at book launch Las Vegas 7.23.14
Chicken Soup for the Soul execs, Anthony Anderson, Sergeant Malarsie and his sevice dog Xxon, and Amy Newmark
Photo courtesy of Chicken Soup for the Soul

Staff Sergeant Michael Malarsie and his service dog Xxon were also in attendance.The duo has been selected to represent the Chicken Soup for the Soul sponsored “Guide & Hearing Dog” category at The American Humane Association Hero Dog Awards on September 27. After being blinded and wounded in combat, Sergeant Malarsie met Xxon who helped him return to work as the only blind Airman serving active duty in the Air Force.

Chicken Soup for the Soul Pet CEO Chris Mitchell spoke about the brand’s current projects including an upcoming feature film and a new TV show titled, Chicken Soup for the Soul: Food & Family. The show will air on PBS beginning August 9.

“Chicken Soup for the Soul is about sharing happiness, inspiration and wellness,” said Newmark. “Whether it’s our books, pet food line or other exciting projects, we incorporate these values into everything we do.”

Closing out the festivities, Anderson and Newmark took time to sign copies of the new books and chat with attendees. Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Dog Did What? and Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Cat Did What? can be pre-ordered at your favorite bookseller and available in stores August 19.

Additional recent and upcoming “happenings” in and around Las Vegas include:

To celebrate the recent acquisition of the LVH- Las Vegas Hotel, on July 23, WESTGATE RESORTS along with Clark County Commissioners Chris Giunchigliani and Tom Collins, ceremonially lifted the first letter “W” that will be added to its marquee at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino.  
“This letter represents more than just the beginning of this property’s name, it’s the beginning of a new era in Las Vegas,” stated David Siegel, founder and CEO of Westgate Resorts. “Enhancements and renovations to this property have already started, and today we are prepping our first Westgate letter to be added to the marquee. This letter is the largest in Las Vegas at 20 feet and one inch!”
Two Las Vegas showgirls and dozens of Westgate team members were on hand to celebrate the occasion. Siegel plans to invest more than $250 million to renovate every square inch of the property and chose to save the jobs of 2,200 employees when he took over the resort on July 1. Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino also created and is currently hiring for more than 200 positions in departments including sales and marketing, engineering, maintenance and housekeeping to work on renovations and other new programs that are being developed.

CHICKEN SOUP FOR THE SOUL, the world’s favorite and most recognized storyteller, has joined forces with THE ANIMAL FOUNDATION in Las Vegas to encourage pet adoptions beginning July 22 and throughout the month of August. New pet parents who adopt a dog or cat from The Animal Foundation during this timeframe will receive a complimentary copy of Chicken Soup for the Soul’s newest books, Chicken Soup for the Soul:  The Dog Did What? or Chicken Soup for the Soul:  The Cat Did What? by AMY NEWMARK with a foreword written by country superstar Miranda Lambert; they’ll also be entered into a sweepstakes to win a year’s supply of Chicken Soup for the Soul pet food.  Chicken Soup for the Soul has partnership with The Animal Foundation throughout the month of August in celebration of “Dog-ust,” the unofficial birthday month for all shelter dogs.

Tropicana headliner MURRAY 'Celebrity Magician' and his wife CHLOE, are staging their 2nd annual charity show 'BEGGIN FOR MAGIC II' on August 5. Also, for the first time, they are presenting 'Beggin For Golf', which will be held August 2nd at the Siena Golf Course.  The event will include a special hole hosted by The Cast of FANTASY at the Luxor that features Murray's wife Chloe. All proceeds from both events will go to 'FRIENDS FOR LIFE HUMANE SOCIETY' to help save abused dogs.

VOICES OF RUDY:THE JOURNEY TO THE MOVIE” starring RUDY RUETTIGER will have its world premiere inside the Troesh Studio Theater at The Smith Center Aug. 9 at 7 p.m. Tickets $34-$39.

During the One-Man Show, Ruettiger will entertain and inspire as he shares his life story of how he accomplished his dream of going to Notre Dame and how he convinced Hollywood to make a movie of his life, which earned him an invitation to the White House.

The play will include a multi-media presentation with scenes from the blockbuster movie as well as personnel photos of his family of 14 brothers and sisters. As Ruettiger tells his story, he will share many voices of people who influenced his life as well as naysayers that he confronted on his journey. Comic impressionist RICH NATOLE will create some of the celebrity voices such as Bill Clinton when Rudy was invited to the White House and Sylvester Stallone who was among the first to see the screen play and regretted passing on the project after he saw the film and met Ruettiger.

The neighborhood bar “PARK ON FREMONT” has teamed up with COWTOWN GUITARS and BACARDI to launch “PICK ME PARK” to give away 25 Recording King Guitars during Acoustic Thursdays. The contest will be held from 9 p.m. to midnight, every Thursday, from August 7 to December 18.   Acoustic Patio’s weekly line-ups showcase local artists, such as Matt Matelko and The Jeremy Cornwell Project, both solo performers, who fill the rustic, blossoming outdoor patio with rejuvenating vibrations.

To enter the competition, a contestant must “Follow” and “Like” Park on Fremont through social media platforms. Once done so, the contestant will post their best “pick up line” to their individual social platforms using both #PickMePark and ( The amount of “likes” the post receives will then determine the amount of raffle tickets the contestant obtains, each Thursday night. The more “likes” a contestant receives, the better chance of winning a new Cowtown Guitar.

All contestants must be present the night of Acoustic Thursdays at 10:30 p.m. to qualify, but only one will go home the winner of a coveted professional grade Recording King guitar, valued at $1,000.

As part of their 35 date summer tour, the iconic and Grammy award-winning band YES will perform two of their classic albums in their entirety in one evening: FRAGILE and CLOSE TO THE EDGE plus an encore of their greatest hits, at The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on Friday, August 15 at 8pm. Tickets start at $39.50 (plus applicable service fees).

ROCKHOUSE, located inside the Grand Canal Shoppes at The Venetian and The Palazzo, will offer a fashionable discount during the 2014 MAGIC trade show. Attendees with a valid convention badge will enjoy a 15 percent discount off their total bill from Monday, Aug. 18, through Wednesday, Aug. 20.

Comedian MATT KAZAM will star in “40 IS NOT THE NEW 20” set to premiere at Riviera Hotel & Casino Monday, August 25. The hilarious 70 minute one-man stand-up comedy production explores how much the world has changed in the past 40 plus years.  It puts the notion that 40 is the new 20 on trial and breaks down the concept into categories such as technology, the media, politics, relationships, our priorities and even how our bodies have changed over the years.  Everyday topics like marriage, parenting, work, commuting, bills and exercise, just to name a few, will be compared and contrasted though the eyes of a 40 year old. All shows begin at 10 p.m. Tickets are $40 plus tax and applicable fees and can be purchased in-person at the Riviera Box Office.


After only three months on the Las Vegas Strip, the hit Broadway musical "MAMMA MIA!", which feature he music of Abba, is closing early next month  The show will go dark after Aug. 3.

CORE! the Ultimate Sports Fan Attraction at Luxor Hotel and Casino has closed. Plans for the space will be announced in the near future.

Celebrity sightings:

Sunday, July 27...

Hip-hop duo Kid ‘N Play hosted the afternoon at TAO Beach.

British pop singer Rita Ora, joined by her sister Elena and friends, was also at TAO Beach.

Later that night, British television personality, model and fashion journalist Louise Roe dined at TAO Asian Bistro.

Saturday, July 26...

In the afternoon, swimwear model Genevieve Morton hosted the daytime party at TAO Beach.

That evening, actress Anna Kendrick was spotted having dinner with her boyfriend at TAO Asian Bistro.

 San Antonio Spurs’ Tony Parker dined at LAVO Italian Restaurant.

Later, pop singer and actress Rita Ora (soon to be seen in the upcoming “Fifty Shades of Grey”) hosted the night at TAO Nightclub. The British beauty was with a group of friends which included her sister, Elena.

Snowboarder and Olympic Gold Medalist Sage Kotsenburg was spotted at Marquee Nightclub celebrating his 21st birthday with a group of friends.

Genevieve Morton at TAO Beach
Genevieve Morton
Photo credit: Brenton Ho, Powers Imagery

Genevieve Morton Hosts TAO Beach
Genevieve Morton at Tao Beach
Photo credit: Brenton Ho, Powers Imagery

Rita Ora Performance at TAO Nightclub 2
Rita Ora performing at TAO Nightclub
Photo credit: Al Powers, Powers Imagery

Rita Ora and DJ Vice at TAO Nightclub
Rita Ora and DJ Vice
Photo credit: Al Powers, Powers Imagery

Friday night, July 25...

Rapper Mac Miller and a group of friends were spotted at Marquee Nightclub enjoying the sounds of Tritonal.

Thursday, July 24...

One of the most celebrated professional soccer players, Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo, stopped intoHakkasan Las Vegas Restaurant inside MGM Grand Hotel & Casino to relish on signature bites and libations. Taking a much needed vacation after his outstanding performance in the 2015 World Cup matchups in Brazil, the talented Portuguese knockout enjoyed a casual night out with friends, without the company of his stunning supermodel girlfriend Irina Shayk.

Sunday, July 20...

As part of her official Las Vegas homecoming celebration, newly crowned Miss Nevada USA Nia Sanchez hosted National Lollipop Day benefiting The Shade Tree at Sugar Factory Town Square.  The brunette beauty met with adoring fans, signed autographs, took photographs, and gushed about her love for sugar saying, “So, it is such an honor to host this event and be surrounded by all these sweet treats!”

Nia Sanchez and Alexa Taylor at Sugar Factory Town Square
Alexa Taylor and Nia Sanchez
Photo credit: Joe Durkin

Miss Nevada Teen USA Alexa Taylor joined Sanchez for the holiday festivities. The event was Melissa and Joe Gorga, reality television stars of Bravo’s “The Real Housewives of New Jersey,” dined at Sugar Factory American Brasserie at Paris Hotel Casino and Resort.

Melissa and Joe Gorga Dine at Sugar Factory American Brasserie at Paris Hotel Casino and Resort in Las Vegas
Melissa Taylor and Joe Gorga
Photo courtesy of Sugar Factory

Saturday, July 19...

“Wheel of Fortune” hostess Vanna White attended the smash-hit musical MAMMA MIA! at The New Tropicana Las Vegas. Vanna went backstage to meet the cast and was greeted with a fun surprise by the company—they had created “Wheel of Fortune”-type letters spelled out as M-A-M-M-A-M-I-A (pictured in attached photo).

Vanna White with Cast of Mamma Mia Las Vegas 7.19.14 Credit - Courtesy Low Res
Vanna White with cast of MAMMA MIA!
Photo courtesy of MAMMA MIA!

Actor, Sung Kang (best known for his role in The Fast and the Furious) and two ladies, dined at Michael and Jenna Morton's newest hotspot restaurant, CRUSH.

Friday, July 18...

American professional basketball executive currently serving as the President of the New York Knicks and "Zen Master", Phil Jackson, dined at Michael and Jenna Morton's La Cave Wine & Food Hideaway at Wynn Las Vegas with basketball Hall of Famer Kurt Rambis.

Comedian Iliza Shlesinger, in town for her stand-up comedy show as part of the Lipshtick series, was spotted at LAVO Lounge. Shlesinger and a friend eventually joined fellow comedian and "Chelsea Lately" regular Heather McDonald, who was also there with a group of friends. The two comedians and their friends then made their way to TAO Nightclub to enjoy the sounds of Breathe Carolina and Candyland.

NBA center and former player on Miami Heat, Greg Oden, dined at Michael and Jenna Morton's newest hotspot restaurant, CRUSH with a group of his friends.

Also spotted at the restaurant was celebrity chef, Hubert Keller, along with his wife and Corporate Chef.