Friday, March 4, 2016 | 6 p.m.
It’s far more a weekend of heroics than entertainment. We have the daredevil-driver stars in the two NASCAR races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway; rough-and-tumble players at the USA Sevens Rugby International Tournament at Sam Boyd Stadium; and perhaps most importantly the hundreds of valley-wide volunteers willing to have their heads shaved for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation fundraising fight against children’s cancer.
From Friday through Sunday, it’s a jam-packed, high-speed, 72-hour schedule of goodwill topped off with Steve Wynn’s Encore Beach Club celebrating the first pool party of the new summer season. The only time there’s no kindness will be at UFC 196 when Conor McGregor fights Nate Diaz, and UFC women’s bantamweight champion Holly Holm goes up against No. 2 contender Miesha Tate.
LVMS visitors during 2016 NASCAR Weekend can explore the festival-type atmosphere with concerts and racecar driver appearances. Our thanks to Tom Donoghue for his gallery of Thursday’s practice sessions at LVMS.
Additionally, Lowe’s once again is teaming with Habitat for Humanity on a home build, and six-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson is on hand for appearances today and Sunday when he will present a ceremonial key to the house.
Stratosphere Pole Day is today with NASCAR Sprint Cup Series qualifying starting at 4:45 p.m. The Xfinity Series Boyd Gaming 300 takes place at 1 p.m. Saturday, and the weekend’s big race is Sunday with theKobalt 400 at 12:30 p.m. on Fox Sports right after the national anthem performed by Craig Morgan and the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds flyover.
Craig also performs a free concert Saturday night at Fremont Street Experience as part of the 13th Annual Race Jam. Our NASCAR music rundown was posted Wednesday. Catch Kevin Harvick and his just debuted in Daytona #4 Busch Beer Chevrolet SS racecar outside Beer Park at Paris Las Vegas on Saturday and Sunday.
It comes down to brute strength, speedy running blasts and a lot of grunting (and swearing) when USA Sevens International Rugby is at Sam Boyd all weekend. Our thanks to Tom again for his parade of nations photo gallery at FSE on Thursday night.
Fans had their USA Sevens Team USA Olympic Pep Rally outside Monte Carlo to kick off rugby week with a performance by Spring Valley High School Drum Line as they lined the plaza for their chance to cheer on Team USA rugby stars. Former Mayor Oscar Goodman, chairman of the Las Vegas Host Committee, welcomed the tournament back to Las Vegas and toasted to a Team USA victory ahead of the Rio Summer Olympics.
We even have a Polar Plunge starting noon Saturday where supporters will take an ice-cold dive into Sunset Station’s outdoor pool to benefit Special Olympics. Brrr!
Showgirls, stars and St. Baldrick’s supporters will crowd into McMullan’s Irish Pub across from the Orleans for the 10th anniversary year of the 16-hour head-shaving party that starts 11 a.m. Saturday and ends 3 a.m. Sunday. Join me there along with Clint Holmes, Kelly Clinton Holmes, Jennifer Romas and more Las Vegas VIPs and celebs.
Also: Comedy legends Steve Martin and Martin Short are at Caesars Palace; Charlie Puth and more are at the Cosmopolitan to benefit the Make-a-Wish Foundation; and Lady Antebellum is in nearby Laughlin. The only sad note this weekend is that we say goodbye to Rascal Flatts as they wrap their current run at the Hard Rock Hotel. But with sold-out audiences and their love of Las Vegas, we’re certain that they’ll return for a third run.
Without further ado, let’s Marvin Gaye and get it on like Charlie and Meghan Trainor in this week’s Royal Robin Rundown:
FRIDAY, MARCH 4
Mercedes in the Morning’s “Spring Fling Concert” featuring Charlie, American Authors and Zella Day is at the Chelsea in the Cosmopolitan.
Lady Antebellum is at Laughlin Event Center.
Rascal Flatts and Barrett Baber are at the Joint in the Hard Rock Hotel through Saturday.
Joe Satriani performs a Nevada Public Radio fundraiser at Pearl at the Palms.
David Perrico and His Pop Strings Orchestra are at Cabaret Jazz in the Smith Center.
Bingo Players, Henry Fong, Drezo, Kayliax, Tony Sinatra, Jace Mek and DJ N3MO are at Brooklyn Bowl in the Linq Promenade. (Matisyahu headlined Thursday night; our thanks to Erik Kabik for his photo gallery.)
Gin Blossoms are at Golden Nugget Showroom.
The Marshall Tucker Band is at the Orleans for two nights.
Atlantic City Boys is at South Point all weekend.
Cameo continues its just-started residency at Westgate Las Vegas.
Stoney Curtis Band is at Lounge at the Palms.
Front Page is at Gold Coast Showroom tonight and Sunday.
Bad Jews is at the Smith Center.
Bill Engvall is at Treasure Island.
Ron White is at the Mirage for two nights.
Joe Rogan is at MGM Grand.
OF SPECIAL NOTE
Tickets are on sale for Chris Tucker at the Pearl on May 28; Slightly Stoopid, Soja and Zion I, The Grouch and Eligh at Mandalay Bay Beach on July 1; Alejandro Fernandez at MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sept. 15; Ray Lamontagne at the Pearl on Sept. 16; and The Moody Blues at the Venetian on Oct. 7-8, 12 and 14-15.
2016 NASCAR Weekend is at LVMS with Stratosphere Pole Day. Jimmie and Jeff Gordon are at Kobalt Kampout in Neon Garage. Richard Petty hosts a meet-and-greet at the race sports and book at the Cosmopolitan. There are NASCAR viewing parties at Crazy Horse III all weekend
Artist and sculptor Marco Cochrane offers a sneak peek of his 7,500-pound, 40-foot Bliss Dance sculpture at The Park outside T-Mobile Arena that took more than 10,000 hours to construct.
USA Sevens Rugby is at Sam Boyd all weekend.
Celebrity chef Alain Ducasse’s collaborative dinner series is at Rivea atop the Delano.
Four local artists also known as AKA open their Ass Kicking Art Exhibit at Skin City Body Painting Studio at Downtown Spaces.
The West Coast Conference basketball championships continue at Orleans Arena through Tuesday.
Chefs Mark Purdy and Tammy Alana host “Table in the Sky” at Alize atop the Palms.
The Nth Universal Whisky Experience is at Encore.
The World Fighting Championships is at Eastside Cannery.
Is summer here already? Encore Beach Club celebrates its Season 7 opening weekend with Mighty Mi just in time for Spring Break.
SATURDAY, MARCH 5
Sheena Easton is at Suncoast Showroom for two nights.
Craig Morgan headlines the 13th Annual Race Jam at FSE.
Vance Joy, Elle King and Jamie Lawson are at Brooklyn Bowl.
Local Brews, Local Grooves featuring Conflict of Interest and Rusty Maples is at House of Blues in Mandalay Bay.
Las Vegas Philharmonic: Cabrera Conducts Mozart is at Reynolds Hall in the Smith Center.
Colin Kane is at Vinyl in the Hard Rock Hotel.
Latin Breeze is at Gold Coast Showroom.
OF SPECIAL NOTE
Tickets are on sale for Jackson Browne at the Pearl on Aug. 20.
UFC 196 is at MGM Grand Garden Arena.
Danica Patrick and Tony Stewart host a free NASCAR Q+A at the Mirage race and sports book.
The Foundation for Positively Kids Gala with “Jersey Boys” at Paris Las Vegas star Travis Cloer with his Vintage Vegas show “Setting the Standard” is at Westgate.
The Strip on the Strip 5K clothing drive and run at Circus Circus benefits veterans.
The “Tuff Hedeman Vegas Shootout” championship bull riding is at South Point Arena and Equestrian Center.
The 3rd Annual American Craft Whiskey Revival is at Golden Nugget.
The 2nd Annual Picnic by Design Parasols in the Park preview party is at Museum of Natural Art.
The Special Olympics hosts the Annual Polar Plunge at Sunset Station.
The 10th Annual Gala Head-Shaving Party with more than 700 shaved volunteers is at McMullan’s Irish Pub from noon Saturday to 3 am. Sunday.
A fundraiser at No Regrets Bar benefits former firefighter Chris Sproule’s journey to the Cycling World Cup in South Africa and his bid to make the U.S. Olympic team.
The 2nd Annual All-Star Dodgeball Tournament After-School benefit is at Mendenhall Center at UNLV.
Sean Paul is at Foxtail at SLS Las Vegas.
Sean Kingston is at Chateau Nightclub & Rooftop at Paris.
Grammy winner T.I. kicks off his five-date residency at Drai’s atop the Cromwell.
RL Grime is at EBC.
Conor McGregor and Holly Holm host a UFC after-party at Surrender in Encore.
Morgan Page is at Light in Mandalay Bay; our Q+A with him goes live 2 a.m. Saturday.
SUNDAY, MARCH 6
The Kobalt 400 is at LVMS.
“The Century of Sinatra with Foreigner star Domenick Allen premieres at Sam’s Town with Bill Fayne, Jim D’Arrigo, Frank Fabio and David Ramirez.
The Ronnie Foster Organ Trio is at Cabaret Jazz.
Ace Frehley and Lita Ford are at Brooklyn Bowl.
Steve Martin and Martin Short are at the Colosseum in Caesars Palace.
OF SPECIAL NOTE
The Annual Track Walk is at LVMS.
Speed Rack, top female mixologists go shaker-to-shaker in a speed-bartending competition raising funds for breast cancer charities, is at Rendezvous Las Vegas.
Audien is at EBC.
I’m in Cabo San Lucas for the next 10 days, but we have interviews aplenty to keep the home fires burning, including Derrick Barry of Las Vegas on “RuPaul’s Drag Race”; Sean Christie and Mark Shunock talking Intrigue at Wynn opening in April; Bon Appetit Editor in Chief Adam Rapoport on Vegas Uncork’d; and a preview of the Nightclub & Bar Convention. Plus, our esteemed Entertainment + Luxury Senior Editor Don Chareunsy will keep Strip Scribbles updated with the latest news.
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 Twitter.com/Robin_Leach.
Follow Las Vegas Sun Entertainment + Luxury Senior Editor Don Chareunsy on Twitter at Twitter.com/VDLXEditorDon.
MGM Grand, a AAA Four Diamond resort, offers 5,044 rooms and suites.
MGM Grand features KÀ by Cirque du Soleil; Brad Garrett’s Comedy Club; and world-class entertainment at the Grand Garden Arena and Hollywood Theatre.
The resort offers signature restaurants by celebrity chefs including Tom Colicchio’s Craftsteak, Emeril Lagasse’s New Orleans Fish House, Wolfgang Puck’s Bar & Grill and Michelin three star and Forbes Five Star restaurant, Joël Robuchon.
As part of its ongoing “Grand Renovation,” MGM Grand has remodeled all rooms and suites in its main tower and is adding several new experiences to its lineup including Hakkasan Las Vegas Restaurant and Nightclub, a new upscale dining/nightlife concept (coming in April 2013).
MGM Grand also features a state-of-the-art, non-smoking conference center, the Grand Spa, Cristophe Salon, "CSI: The Experience" and an inviting pool complex featuring the tantalizing daylife of Wet Republic.
Upscale accommodations include The Mansion, an exclusive hotel within the hotel; the luxurious two-story SKYLOFTS at MGM Grand; and The Signature at MGM Grand, a luxury all-suite, non-gaming hotel located adjacent to the main resort.
The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas dares to be different. From the hotel’s red reservations desks to fine art found throughout the resort, The Cosmopolitan’s signature style is helping to pave its own path on the Las Vegas Strip.
Upon entering the resort, you’re greeted by pillars of video boards playing video art by Digital Kitchen and David Rockwell Studio exclusively produced for The Cosmopolitan. Just beyond that, you’ll find all your favorite casino games on the resort’s 100,000-square-foot casino floor.
The Cosmopolitan’s rooms standout as the resort’s most unique feature. About 2,220 of The Cosmopolitan’s 2,995 rooms have 6-foot deep terraces that span the length of the room, a first at a modern Strip hotel. Other in-room amenities include soaking tubs, kitchenettes and quirky accessories like artsy coffee table books.
The dining experience at The Cosmopolitan isn’t something you’ll find at other Strip resorts, either. All of The Cosmopolitan’s 13 restaurateurs are new to the Las Vegas market. You’ll find American steakhouse fare in a modern setting at STK, top-notch sushi at Blue Ribbon Sushi Bar & Grill and the freshest fish flown in from the Mediterranean daily at Estiatorio Milos.
Whether the sun is up or down, Marquee Nightclub & Dayclub is the place to find the party at The Cosmopolitan. The venue is a dayclub/nightclub, complete with a pool and cabanas outside and three different rooms with three different vibes inside.
If nightclubs aren’t your thing, you can grab a drink at one of The Cosmopolitan’s five other bars, like The Chandelier, which is encased in 2 million dripping crystals.