Access Vegas Insider Vibe – September 27, 2000

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This Issue: Splash

Curious about a show, restaurant, or other Las Vegas attraction that looks fun? Let us review it for you first! Suggestions are always welcome at:


Hello from Portland, OR. Long time readers know that I enjoy escaping the neon and visiting my family a few times a year. I spent the weekend with them on the beautiful Oregon Coast. It is as scenic as you may have heard, and if you want to “steal” a few great beach shots or just enjoy the beach views, head on over to

LAS VEGAS NEWS – of interest to tourists:

IMPLOSION TIME! – That longtime eyesore The El Rancho (north end of the Strip) is getting imploded at 2:30 AM on Oct. 3. This appears to be the last implosion for a long time, so it might be worth the extra Vegas trip. Like you need an excuse to come see us anyway!

SUPER BOWL SUNDAY – New Years Eve may make the news, but Super Bowl Sunday lights up this town like no other weekend. 200,000-plus crazed football fans flood the gambling mecca here to place every kind of bet available (and there are some strange ones) even if their favorite team never made the playoffs. Full story at and you can still grab reasonable rooms ($45 downtown, $55 Strip) for Super Bowl Sunday Las Vegas at

COMDEX – Speaking of getting a room before you have to offer your first-born in exchange, you can still get rooms downtown for as low as $40 a night (El Cortez) or $100 on the Strip (Sahara) but you better beat the rest of the crowd to

RESTAURANT REVIEWS – Recent reviews appearing in the media:

Bice (Aladdin Desert Passage) –
Desert Passage (various – Aladdin) –
Top of the World (Stratosphere) –
WB 16 (Venetian) –

THE MONORAIL – is coming! $650 million in bonds has been approved, The Venetian has dropped their objections, and it will run from the MGM to The Sahara, helping take people, cars, and buses off of The Strip. Full story at and you can let us know if you are looking forward to it or just plain don’t care by giving us your opinion on a Las Vegas monorail in our current poll at

MGM THEME PARK – Our promised review of it this summer never materialized because it is becoming a shell of its former self as the MGM uses the property for other purposes. There is now sincere talk of shutting down the park for good because of the value of the land it sits on. Full story at

VEGAS RADIO / TV ONLINE – A recent post to asked about online media availability. You can watch local news online: the KTNV 13 feed is at (scroll down to KTNV Las Vegas, NV) and KLAS 8 feed is at (scroll down for the LIVE Webcast link). Nine radio stations from the area stream online. Links to these stations are available at

XFL – The Las Vegas Outlaws of the upstart winter/spring football league now have a website at

RAT RACE – I flew out of McCarran Wednesday afternoon on my way up here to the Pacific Northwest and had to detour to get to the Delta counter. Why? Because the feature film Rat Race starring Whoopi Goldberg and Cuba Gooding Jr. was shooting at the adjacent ticket counter. Full story on the shoot at

$25 HOTEL REBATE – has been so popular that it is extended again to any reservation made in Sept. (for travel
any time) — you pick the hotel! Our partners at Hotel Reservations Network
are giving you $25 back on any 2+ night stay in Las Vegas or any major city
they reserve. Claiming your cash is simple:

1. Print out:
2. Book a room online at
3. Send in for your rebate when you get home.

It doesn’t get any easier than that, and you get their low price guarantee
to boot!

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Quick Concert and Show Notes:

SHOWS – See which shows are playing during your stay and book reservations EVEN if the tickets aren’t on sale yet. Let ShowVegas takes care of all your needs directly online! Search by dates at

STEVE WYRICK – The noted magician’s much-delayed show has opened at The Sahara. The R-J just reviewed it at

CONCERTS and HEADLINERS – Our listing is available online anytime at

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LAS VEGAS WEATHER – This 5 day forecast is courtesy of Weather.Com:

Wednesday – 92/66 Partly Cloudy
Thursday – 95/58 Mostly Sunny
Friday – 95/59 Fair
Saturday – 94/59 Mostly Sunny
Sunday – 93/57 Mostly Sunny

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Splash has been occupying the somewhat intimate showroom of the Riviera since 1985, revamping itself every few years to keep with the times. The only problem is that the era it is trying to keep with is 1980-something. Unlike the full-on traditional Las Vegas shows like Jubilee and Folies Bergere, Splash is more of what you would expect in a traveling or Indian casino show making itself out to be a “Vegas Style” show.

It all started in true Vegas fashion, with singers and dancers and topless showgirls in feather headdresses making decent use of the limited state space. We were then introduced to “world champion” skaters Irina Grigorian and Kikhail Panin. In the past, Splash was centered on a huge aquatic tank (hence, the name Splash), but now these fine skaters are much the centerpiece, performing on a very sized ice rink in the middle of the stage. Photo link:

They do the best they can under the circumstances, and put on a number of strong performances throughout the show. The couple performs many of the acrobatic and strength ice stunts you see on televised skating including impressive acrobatic stunts. In one of their later acts, they engage in some eye-opening firestick tossing and juggling, and Irina performs a hula-hoop act that has to been seen to be believed.

If it’s Vegas, you have to have a couple of comedians, and Splash gives us Los Latin Cowboys. They came out pounding on huge drums, and then proceeded to show their skill with bolo balls, which lead to picking on male member of the audience (there with his wife) with gay-tinged jokes about “balls.” Fortunately, once they quit the jokes, they put on quite a display of bolo and tap.

The middle of the show lagged with 4 scenes featuring impersonators: Madonna, Michael Jackson, Cher, and John Travolta. Each featured the impersonator “singing” or dancing to a real video of the actual song shown on big video screens at either side of the stage. While the actual entertainer was surrounded by dancers and a simple set, I found myself spending more time watching the screens, and you can do that at home.

Splash featured other specialty and novelty acts, such as a talented contortionist and a tap-dance duo consisting of one live human and a laser computer-generated showman. Each specialty segment was interesting, but often went on long past where the novelty had worn off. Each performer was talented in their own right, but that didn’t bring the show together in any cohesive way.

The night was concluded with the Thunderdome, a “Globe of Death” featuring four motorcyclist who ride at the same time, spinning around the inside of an eighteen foot steel ball. Pretty impressive, and certainly one of the highlights. It was also one of the few acts where the host wasn’t imploring the audience to step up the applause.

I probably took twice as many notes at Splash as I usually do. Was it that good of a show? No, I was that bored. This could be a solid, riveting show, with the 95 minutes comfortably trimmed to a fast-paced hour-plus (and the price dropped $10) by dropping the lame impersonator scenes. They don’t do justice to the impersonators, and if we are looking for that style of entertainment, we can go see Legends in Concert (Imperial Palace) or American Superstars (Stratosphere).

If you are going to spend real money to see a real 90 minute Las Vegas show, go see Jubilee at Ballys or Folies Bergere at The Tropicana. I’d give Folies a very slight edge, but both are worth your time. My reviews of each are at:

Folies Bergere –
Jubilee –

The exception? If the wife has been bugging you to go to one of those touring “Olympic Skaters On Ice” shows (over your dead body), but is reluctant to go to a somewhat risque Las Vegas show, this is a good compromise. She gets her romantic figure skating and you get your traditional topless Vegas showgirls.

Splash plays every night at 7:30 and 10:30 PM at The Riviera. Tickets are $46.75 and $57.75 including tax. More info and advance ticket purchase is available at

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I goofed. I left the “Letters to the Editor” file at home. So … look for them next week!

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Your input is welcome. Write us a “letter to the editor” at While space doesn’t permit publishing every letter, we do certainly read them all and they help shape our content. Please include your name if you wish to have it published (stating your city is optional). Also, guest article submissions are welcome with full credit to you, your website, etc., if accepted.


ONLINE POLL – “How interested are you in riding the monorail when it is completed?” Let’s hear your opinions at — results will be published in two weeks!

Results from last weeks poll “Do the recent tragedies involving Las Vegas tourists (casino shooting and tour bus accident) make you more wary of coming to Las Vegas?”

Yes, I feel Las Vegas is getting unsafe. 17%
Maybe, It makes me think twice. 23%
No, I won’t give it a second thought. 59%


Rules (unless otherwise noted or link to outside contest): You may enter every contest, but only one entry to each. Please note the expiration date and only enter if you will be in town and can use them. The 20’th entry in each contest will be the winner. Just sent a blank email to the specified email address — we’ll get your mailing address from you only if you win. Also, please do not enter if you have won within the past month.

VIVA LAS VEGAS – Collectors items! These tickets to the Viva Las Vegas show at the legendary Sands Casino. Enter by emailing us, in order, what five Las Vegas hotels have the most rooms. Winners will be chosen at random from correct entries. E-mail answers to Contest ends Sept. 30, 2000

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All contents copyright MM Ted Newkirk. All Rights Reserved.
September 27, 2000
ISSN: 1529-2770