From: Norm Johnson
As many of you know my birthday is on Valentine’s Day. And, I enjoy being with special friends on that day or evening, and try to pick a neat place to celebrate at. I received a note from an agency that the Plaza Hotel and Casino were planning a special menu for Valentine’s Day, so I decided that would be where I should go this year. It had been years since I had been in Oscar’s Steakhouse. I had heard how elegant it had been for some friends who had dined there previously. So, I called the room and made reservations for four people. Invited close friend Nancy Barr and her husband, attorney Steve Shinn to join Cathy and me.
Dining under the iconic glass dome was everything we had anticipated. We arrived at precisely 5:30 p.m. and our table was ready (there was no waiting). I also informed the Maître d that we were expecting an old friend to join us for a drink, and could they add an extra chair to our table, of which they quickly took care of. Soon attorney Jann Chubb joined us for a cocktail (she had an earlier engagement and would just be able to stay for a few minutes). Besides the special menu, which consisted of a three-course meal, Oscar’s also offered its regular new menu that had been in place since Feb. 7th.
Our menu was a choice of:
First Course: Caprese Salad OR Wedge Salad (Wine Pairing: Beau Joie)
Second Course: Pan Seared Scallop with Red Pepper Sauce and Cauliflower Puree (Wine Pairing: Ferrari Carano Chardonnay) OR 8-ounce Filet Mignon with Roasted Fingerling Potatoes (Wine Pairing: Irony Cabernet Sauvignon)
Third Course: Trio of Chocolate Mousse with chocolate covered strawberry (Wine Pairing: Chocolate Martini)
I must tell you, that the dinner was perfect. Cathy had the Scallops while the rest of us went for the Filet. Couldn’t have been happier. The service at Oscar’s is without question some of the best in the city. Now here is the announcement sent out telling the world about some new items on Oscar’s menu.
The new menu includes two new appetizers and three new entrées, one of which was often offered as a special but will now be a regular menu option. The shareable appetizer list now includes “Fat Herbie’s Tuna Poke Stack,” an Ahi poke layered with avocado and ginger, and an “Artichoke Au Gratin,” made with marinated artichokes, manchego cheese and lemon sauce. Three new entrees were also added to the menu. A lamb chop with herb chimichurri sauce and a bone-in ribeye, previously just a special, both have been added as permanent selections on the menu. In addition, the dinner menu adds a vegetarian entrée option with a grilled vegetable lasagna featuring a sundried tomato marinara and fresh mozzarella. French fries have also been added as a side dish option.
Oscar’s for those who are not aware, was named after former Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman: Oscar’s Beef ∙ Booze ∙ Broads steakhouse is a glamorous and uniquely Las Vegas steakhouse that overlooks the lights of Fremont Street and downtown Las Vegas. Oscar’s features perfectly aged steaks cooked over a 600-degree grill and accompanied by high-quality, made-from-scratch sides. Oscar’s also offers a wide variety of delicious, hand-crafted cocktails, including martinis, the former mayor’s signature drink. Reservations are recommended by calling 702-38-OSCAR or 702-386-7227 or online at www.oscarslv.com.
THIS AND THAT QUICKLY:
Opportunity Village announced its participation in Together for Choice, a new coalition of service providers, family members and concerned citizens that is launching a national initiative to find solutions for the growing shortage of suitable housing and vocational opportunities for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. As Nevada’s largest employer of people with disabilities and provider for vocational training, employment, habilitation and social recreation programs and services to nearly 2,000 individuals annually, Opportunity Village is committed to bringing awareness to the lack of adequate independent housing. Through this coalition, Opportunity Village will take part in educating the public and key influencers on the need for Medicaid funding of choice-based housing, employment, and training, and developing policy reform initiatives.
“Together for Choice plays a vital role in serving the wonderful individuals with disabilities who participate in Opportunity Village’s programs and services. Our involvement in the coalition will help set the stage for many important initiatives we have planned for the future, such as Betty’s Village residential facilities, right here in Southern Nevada,” said Bob Brown, president and CEO of Opportunity Village.
“Together for Choice” brings together representatives of organizations that serve individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, family members and loved ones from across the country to discuss the work that needs to be done to advance these individuals' rights and uncover solutions to expand their choices. For more information visit www.togetherforchoice.org.
Pop/Rock icon Neil Diamond continues to be one of the most popular, successful singer/songwriters in the history of popular music. On April 7th, Diamond will embark on a worldwide tour beginning in Fresno, CA. However, if one chooses to get technical, it was last year that marked the 50th anniversary of Diamond entering the pop charts with his first four hits in 1966: 1) Solitary Man, 2) Cherry Cherry 3) I’ve Got the Feeling (Oh No No) and 4) I’m a Believer (which became the biggest hit in the career of the Monkees). However, for whatever reason, Diamond has decided to call his upcoming tour “The “50th Anniversary Tour.”
Also, for whatever reason, Diamond has decided not to include a Las Vegas date on this tour although Las Vegas has always been a stop for him during his periodic tours beginning in1996.
Does it matter? Possibly not. Las Vegas has had its own local ‘Neil Diamond’ for almost 23 years now and to put things into perspective, a few months ago at the annual Toys for Tots holiday variety benefit show, Las Vegas Review Journal columnist John Katsilometes made it a point to mention this from the stage as he greeted the packed house at the opening: "Neil Diamond is skipping Las Vegas on his 50th anniversary tour this year, but you can see Rob Garrett as Neil Diamond tonight" - much to the glee of the responsive audience, many not necessarily hard core Diamond fans.
Rob Garrett’s name has become synonymous with that of Neil Diamond as no one will argue that he has become one of the town’s most popular local draws – whether it be a tribute act or non-tribute act. Its been a while since Garrett has performed an extended engagement in Las Vegas and, as a prelude to Diamond’s upcoming tour, he will command the main stage of the South Point Hotel & Casino for 3 nights (March 10th - March 12th) along with his well-polished 9-piece “K.O.D.” (‘King of Diamonds’) Band” performing their own “50th Anniversary Neil Diamond Tribute Show.” Band members include Stephen Gerard and Jay Boyer on Keys/Synthesizer, Daryl Slade on bass, Billy Carmody on drums, Matt Baldoni & Steve Henley on electric and acoustic guitars, LJ Harness on percussion, and Diane Gordon and Jessie Thompson singing backup vocals. Showtime’s are at 7:30 PM and one can purchase tickets ($25/$30/$35) by calling or visiting the South Point box office at 702-797-8055 or going directly to their website at http://southpointcasino.com/entertainment/showroom.
Bill Haley Jr. and The Comets will bring the hits of Bill Haley – the “Father of Rock ‘n’ Roll” to the Suncoast Showroom on April 8-9. In memory of rock icon Bill Haley, Bill Haley Jr. formed this tribute group to carry on his father’s musical legacy and give new life to his timeless hits, including “Rock Around the Clock,” “Crazy, Man, Crazy,” “Shake, Rattle and Roll” and more. At one time I actually worked as a dancer in Hollywood, and danced in the film starring his father, “Rock Around the Clock.” That’s also when I first ran into a future client, the great Freddie Bell and his Bellboys. Later I danced in another rock movie where I met The Treniers, “Don’t Knock the Rock.” Gosh, those were some fantastic days in my short career as a dancer in Hollywood. Someday I’ll tell the whole story.
The original Bill Haley and the Comets burst into the music scene as pioneers of the rock genre with the release of their single “Rock Around the Clock,” which held the #1 spot on the charts for eight weeks total and sold 25 million copies worldwide. The group went on to sell more than 60 million records. In 1987, Haley was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in recognition of his role in rock music’s early days. Showtime is 8:30 p.m. each night. Tickets start at $19.95 plus taxes and fees.
Fulfilling many teenage dreams, the Backstreet Boys will make their debut on the Las Vegas Strip with their exclusive headlining residency and will be partying at Chateau Nightclub & Rooftop at Paris Las Vegas after select performances starting Wednesday, March 1. In September 2016, the best-selling boy band of all time announced their new Las Vegas headlining residency show “Backstreet Boys: Larger Than Life” at The AXIS at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino. Nick Carter, Howie Dorough, Brian Littrell, AJ McLean, and Kevin Richardson, will take the stage with a one-of-a-kind, over-the-top production made exclusively for the Vegas stage. After select performances, the Backstreet Boys will party with fans on Chateau’s Rooftop, featuring panoramic views of the Las Vegas Strip and lavish VIP booths with bottle service. March after-party dates include March 1, March 4, March 10, March 11, March 17, and March 18. Admission to the popstar party is priced at $40. Locals will receive free entry on Wednesday, March 1. So, gang, there’s a special for ya!
That’s it for this week. I’m outa here!