Las Vegas Sun

February 22, 2018

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Guest Columnist:

Terry Fator’s Winston the Impersonating Turtle: ‘Things Turtles Can Do in Las Vegas’



Mirage headliners Winston the Impersonating Turtle and Terry Fator.

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Winston the Impersonating Turtle rides a limousine.

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Winston the Impersonating Turtle hitchhikes.

Terry Fator Fifth Anniversary at Mirage

Rick Harrison and Terry Fator at Fator’s fifth-anniversary celebration Friday, March 7, 2014, at the Mirage. Launch slideshow »

Editor’s Note: As Robin Leach prepares for his traditional summer vacation under the Tuscan sun in Italy — plus, Costa Esmeralda on Sardinia this year — many of our Strip personalities have stepped forward in his absence to pen their words of wisdom. We kick off today with Mirage comedy impressionist headliner Terry Fator and gorgeous showgirl and TV anchor Maren Wade, who pens the column Confessions of a Showgirl for our colleagues at Las Vegas Weekly. First up is Terry’s talking Winston the Impersonating Turtle with his views of the Las Vegas scene.

One of the great things about being an impersonating turtle is that I can impersonate Terry Fator writing an article for Robin Leach while Robin is off on another one of his epic summer vacations.

Seriously, Robin has more time off than an air-conditioning repairman in the South Pole. But that’s OK. We turtles admire anyone who takes life slow.

So I started this article in Terry’s voice — talk about ironic — and then I realized that when we’re onstage, he never says anything while I do all the talking. So why not just do all the writing this time myself?

And the topic I picked is “Things Turtles Can Do in Las Vegas.”

First of all, let me say that Las Vegas is probably the most turtle-friendly town in the world other than Lancaster, Pa. Turtles love Lancaster because the Amish live there, and they have horse-drawn buggies, which are much easier to avoid on the road than Las Vegas cabs.

Plus, horses attract flies, which for turtles is like what vodka is for Charlie Sheen.

But, in the end, there is no place like Las Vegas if you’re a turtle looking for excitement. One of my favorite things to do is visit the Bellagio Fountains. Not watch them — swim in them! With 105-degree days in Las Vegas, we turtles head for water like a Kardashian heads to a camera.

Another great thing for turtles in Las Vegas is the High Roller at the Linq Promenade. We get a great view of the whole city, which is a real treat for a species that generally has an ankle-high view of the world.

Now I’ve never gone there, but I understand that there are topless pools in Las Vegas. For some of the younger turtles, it must be pretty exciting to walk around without their shells.

The question I’m most often asked is, “Do turtles gamble?” Actually, that’s the question I’m asked second-most often. The No. 1 question is, “Why don’t I have my own show?”

Let’s just say that I’d never leave Terry; he has a hand in everything I do. Now when it comes to gambling, the truth is we love slot machines.

We can play four at once. We also love the sports book. I suggest the one at the Mirage. I always bet heavy on college basketball, especially on the University of Maryland Terrapins.

Another great thing to do in Las Vegas for turtles or people is you can swim with sharks. Sharks are considered the world’s most aggressive man-eating predators if you don’t count the 40-year-old American cougar, like Vicki the Cougar in our show.

Now there are things that I have found disappointing. The all-you-can-eat buffets are not really turtle-friendly; you must be this tall to get on some of the rides at Circus Circus, and I’m more like this tall. And I went to Sapphire Club and found out way too late that it is not a jewelry store.

All in all, I can recommend Las Vegas to any turtle. There are great things to fill your days and nights, and, best of all, you can star onstage. If you want to see for yourself, check out my show at the Mirage in the Winston-the-Impersonating-Turtle-Formerly-Terry-Fator Theater.

Check out our other guest column today from Las Vegas showgirl Maren Wade, and on Thursday look for our guest columns from The Gazillionaire of “Absinthe” at Caesars Palace and super-singer Kristen Hertzenberg.

Robin Leach of “Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous” fame has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past 15 years giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.

Follow Robin Leach on Twitter at

Follow Las Vegas Sun Entertainment + Luxury Senior Editor Don Chareunsy on Twitter at

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