Weekend best bets: The Vegas Valley Book Festival, Foodie Fest and ‘Zarkana’

Bill Wise tosses pizza dough while making pizza in the wood fired oven of a converted fire engine at the 2012 Las Vegas Foodie Fest Saturday, April 28, 2012 in the parking lot of the Silverton.
Photo: Sam Morris

After the onslaught of Halloween events, Las Vegas takes a bit of a breather; well, as much of a breather as this city ever takes. The clubs may be a little calmer this weekend, but musicians and comedians are out in full force. Look forward to shows from Natasha Leggero, Bill Maher and Guns N' Roses plus preview performances of Cirque's new show "Zarkana." Here are our best entertainment bets for the weekend:

    • Photo

      Thursday-Saturday: Vegas Valley Book Festival and the Comic Book Festival

      The Vegas Valley Book Festival begins Thursday, with a keynote address by author Charlaine Harris at 7 p.m. at the Clark County Library. On Friday, the festival moves to the Arts District for the First Friday Poetry Stage, 6-9 p.m. at Boulder Plaza Park, 1047 S. Main St. On Saturday, the Comic Book Festival takes place at the Clark County Library, with remaining festival events at the Historic Fifth Street School, 401 S. Fourth St. At the school, highlights will include an extensive entertainment and activity schedule at the Children’s Book Festival.

    • Photo

      Friday: Day of the Dead celebrations

      Celebrate life and experience the customs of Day of the Dead at this Hispanic celebration honoring loved ones at the Springs Preserve. The family-friendly event features altar demonstrations, live entertainment, traditional Mexican food, face painting, sugar skull decorating, spooky story-telling tours, arts and crafts and much more.

      Advanced tickets can be purchased online as well as at several area supermarkets, including participating Mariana's Supermarkets and Cardenas Markets. Tickets are $8 for adults, $5 for children ages 5 to 12 and free for those under 5. Springs Preserve Members receive 50 percent off admission. The event begins at 4 p.m. Friday.

      Also in celebration of Dia de Muertos, El Segundo Sol will host a Day of the Dead Party instead of their usual Cinco de Mayo every month party. Get in the spirit and raise a glass in honor of your loved ones with $3 Cazadores shots and $5 margaritas. Loco Hour specials will be offered all day at Bar Segundo and enjoy food specials like atomic cheese nachos for $2.75 and tacos for $3 a piece including steak with chipotle salsa, pork belly with caramelized pineapple and chile, or Baja-style lobster with avocado-tomatillo salsa for $5. Patrons feeling extra lucky can try the Wheela Tequila for their chance to win prizes. El Segundo Sol’s DJ will start spinning tunes at 6 p.m. The event begins at 11 a.m. on Friday.

    • Photo

      Friday: Cash for Candy at Hale and Downey Family Dentistry

      Trick-or-treaters can bring their excess candy to Hale and Downey Family Dentistry and receive $1 per pound. Candy will be collected and sent to troops overseas through Operation Gratitude. There will be a bounce house, popcorn, face painting, music, entertainment, and treats for the little ones. Guests also have the opportunity to write letters of support for troops.

    • Photo

      Friday-Sunday: Las Vegas Foodie Fest at the Silverton

      More than 20 food trucks participating in the Las Vegas Foodie Fest will kick off the festival by taking part in the Food Truck Movement. Similar to the NASCAR Hauler Parade, the trucks will cruise down Las Vegas Boulevard Friday morning to bring awareness to the growing food truck culture in Las Vegas.

      The fest itself takes place at the Silverton, where foodies will enjoy tastes from more than 40 food trucks and vendors including White Rabbit, Fukuburger, Devilicious, Jogasaki Burrito, Tasty Bunz, Baby's Badass Burgers, Truck Norris, Fluff Ice, Vizzi Truck and the Lobster Lady, who will be traveling to the festival all the way from Maine. The festival will feature Nonna's Kitchenette, who will debut their food truck at this year’s event after being named a finalist of Food Network’s “The Great Food Truck Race,” which was hosted by Tyler Florence. Admission is $8 per person for each day or $12 for access for all three days with unlimited re-entry to the festival. In addition to specialty food vendors, guests can enjoy carnival rides, a beer garden, eating competitions and much more. Children under 54 inches will receive complimentary admission. The event runs from 4 p.m.-midnight Friday, noon-midnight Saturday and noon-10 p.m. Sunday in the Silverton parking lot.

    • Photo

      Saturday-Sunday: Art Walk in Summerlin

      Trails Village Center in Summerlin presents the Art Walk featuring free parking and admission to view fine art exhibits, unique crafts and a kids art park. The event runs from 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

    • Photo

      Saturday-Sunday: Lonnie Hammargren's Nevada Day open house

      Celebrate Nevada Day in the most interesting way with a tour of former Lt. Governor Dr. Lonnie Hammargren's home at 4318 Ridgecrest Drive. The self-proclaimed "goofy doctor" opens his home annually for Nevada Day to show off his impressive collection of unique items including Las Vegas memorabilia, signs, stage production props and other intriguing artifacts from around the world. The home will be open from noon- 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

      For a link to Las Vegas Sun's 2011 story on the event, complete with a map of the location, please click here.

    • Photo

      Saturday: Light the Night Walk at Kellogg Zaher Park

      The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Light The Night Walk is the nation's night to pay tribute and bring hope to people battling cancer. The local event will take place at Kellogg Zaher Park. Groups form fundraising teams and consumers help by donating at retail outlets. Local participants honor survivors and victims by lighting the nigh with illuminated twinkling balloons: white for survivors and patients, red for supporters and gold in memory of a life lost. Stollers and wheelchairs are permitted but skates and scooters are not, for everybody's safety. Dogs can also take part, if on a leash. The event is free for walkers and those who raise $100 or more will receive a T-shirt and balloon. Registration begins at 4 p.m., the remembrance ceremony at 5:15 p.m. and the walk at 6 p.m.

    • Photo

      Saturday: Guns N' Roses at The Joint

      Iconic rockers Guns N' Roses take over the Joint at the Hard Rock with their "Appetite for Democracy" residency. The band has designed set lists specifically for the shows at the Joint, which will span their storied career from albums like "Appetite for Destruction" to "Chinese Democracy." Tickets are $41-$111 and shows are at 10 p.m.Saturday and Sunday. Additional shows run through the end of the month.

    • Photo

      Friday-Sunday: Natasha Leggero at the Riviera

      The Icons of Comedy series returns to the Riviera with comedian Natasha Leggero. The established stand-up comic has covered the late night talk show circuit plus appeared on "Reno 911, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Samantha Who?, Aqua Teen Hunger Force" and "The Sarah Silverman Program." Tickets are $38.49- $60.49 and shows begin at 10:30 p.m. Friday-Sunday.

    • Photo

      Thursday-Sunday: Zarkana preview performances at Aria

      Premiering Thursday, "Zarkana" by Cirque du Soleil finds a permanent home in Las Vegas at the Aria Resort & Casino. Zark, the ringmaster of an extraordinary circus coming back to life, guides audiences through an abandoned theatre populated by a motley collection of off-the-wall characters and incomparable acrobats. "Zarkana" is a visual vortex set in a twisted musical and acrobatic fantasy universe where, little by little, chaos and craziness give way to a true celebration. Preview performances run through Nov. 8, with weekend shows at 7 p.m. Thursday-Sunday and 9:30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Preview pricing is $62 - $167. Regular performances begin Nov. 11.


    Previous Discussion:

    • At this point, the only constant from album to album is the band’s dedication to ambition.

    • The bravery of the real soldiers is buried under a mountain of hokey sentiment and rah-rah bluster.

    • Everything in theaters this week, plus special screenings and movie reviews.

    • Get More A&E Stories
    Top of Story