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JUNE 2013


photo ISSUE

Work of art One painter’s obsession Frosty reception An epic ice cream crawl

Party animals So a dog walks into a bar School supplies Move your kid to the head of the class

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editor’s note


Thousands of words Okay, I’m gonna venture out on a

Next month in Desert Companion

Eat up our fourth annual DEALicious Meals issue

2 | Desert

limb here and issue one of those grandiose, sweeping statements born of bungling enthusiasm, a statement that’ll probably result in someone laughing at me in a bar after this issue comes out: We are sooo living in a golden age of photography. Admittedly, my evidence for that is hopelessly anecdotal, based largely on, oh, say, noting the number of times I’ve “liked” a Facebook friend’s painfully arty Instagram pictures of trees, as well as the hours I’ve logged hopping from one random, eye-melting Tumblr photo blog to another. Thanks to the advent of inexpensive digital cameras, leaps in photo editing software, the ubiquity of smartphones packed with handy snapshot apps — and let’s not forget that piece of magic tying it all together, the Internet — photography has more than merely evolved. It’s transformed from a documentary craft and fine art to a visual lingua franca. Today, photos are the default public postcards that fill out the travelogue of our daily lives. (That is, at least until we all start communicating via animated GIFs based on ’80s sitcoms.) That’s a pretentious way of saying this: We knew we were going to receive a helluva lot of entries for our inaugural “Focus on Nevada” photo contest. No small contributing factor, either, is the fact that we happen to live in one of the most visually compelling places

Companion | June 2013

in the world, whether we’re talking about serene desert beauty or the riotous glitter of the Strip. Anticipating that, we happily waded through more than 1,500 photo entries. We gazed and marveled, discussed and debated and — finally, often painfully — chose the winners. But that wasn’t the most fun part. As we sifted through the entries and read the entrants’ notes on their submissions, it soon became clear that this was much more than a shutterbug beauty pageant. Something else was going on that you wouldn’t perhaps expect from a contest that was ostensibly about visual appeal. I was surprised: Countless entries were generously supplemented with jottings, notes, backstories, even spontaneously penned essays that enriched the photos with personal context and history. This wasn’t sucking up to the judges. These were effusions of earnest pride from longtime Nevadans: I love this place and want to share it with the world. They were admissions of surprise from visitors and recent transplants: I never expected such beauty here — but once I opened my eyes, I couldn’t help but grab my camera. Still others took the contest as a personal challenge to take a look at their home with a fresh view: Here’s a different angle on a place you think you know. We asked for your best photos capturing the spirit of Nevada, but we got a lot more. Taken collectively, your

photos represent a refreshed vision of Nevada, from the urban wilds to the whispering outskirts. Congratulations to all the winners and finalists. Of course, it wouldn’t be a truly digital-era contest if we didn’t get your vote. What’s your favorite photo? You can tell us right from your smartphone. On page 56, you’ll find instructions on downloading the Digimarc app, which will allow you to vote on your favorite contest entries. Plus, you’ll be entered in a drawing to win dinner on us — grub guaranteed to be worthy of a few Instagram foodie shots of your own. Enjoy. Andrew Kiraly Editor

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contents desert companion magazine //



All Things to All People

The Insta-guru speaks By Scott Dickensheets



See me after class By Chantal Corcoran


Community Let the fur fly By Rebecca Zisch


The work of art By Scott Dickensheets



Cold crush crew By Kristy Totten



From rock to theater to dance, your guide to culture


End note

A hole different view By Christopher Smith


44 See

Unique visions of Las Vegas from the city’s best photographers

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Companion | June 2013

56 Focus on Nevada

Oh, snap! Feast your eyes on our photo contest winners


photo issue

on the cover Photography

“The fog and the mountain,” by Mauricio Reyes, honorable mention, student/amateur category

Work of art One painter’s obsession frosty reception An epic ice cream crawl

party animals So a dog walks into a bar school supplies Move your kid to the head of the class

p i n h o l e wat e r fa l l p h oto : c h r i s s m i t h ; i n s ta g r a m p h oto : s c ot t d i c k e n s h e e t s ; d o g : b r e n t h o l m e s ; ICE CREAM : S a b i n O r r


SUMMER SEASON ON SALE NOW Photo by David McClister


An Evening with Willie Nelson & Family — 8/13

Dixie’s Tupperware Party — 8/1 - 8/4 Photo by Michael Wilson


Chris Isaak Tour 2013 — 8/14

Buddy Guy with special guest Quinn Sullivan — 8/22

An Evening with Lyle Lovett and His Large Band — 8/16

Jimmy Connors: What it Takes to Win — 8/23

VISIT THESMITHCENTER.COM TO SEE THE FULL LINEUP TODAY. 702.749.2000 | TTY: 800.326.6868 or dial 711 | For group inquiries call 702.749.2348 361 Symphony Park Avenue, Las Vegas, NV 89106

The Symphonic Rockshow Featuring Brody Dolyniuk with Yellow Brick Road — 9/6

Mo rtis

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Mission Statement

Desert Companion is the premier city magazine that celebrates the pursuits, passions and aspirations of Southern Nevadans. With award-winning lifestyle journalism and design, Desert Companion does more than inform and entertain. We spark dialogue, engage people and define the spirit of the Las Vegas Valley. Publisher Melanie Cannon Editor Andrew Kiraly Art Director Christopher Smith


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Website: Desert Companion is published 12 times a year by Nevada Public Radio, 1289 S. Torrey Pines Dr., Las Vegas, NV 89146. It is available by subscription at, or as part of Nevada Public Radio membership. It is also distributed free at select locations in the Las Vegas Valley. All photos, artwork and ad designs printed are the sole property of Desert Companion and may not be duplicated or reproduced without the written permission of the publisher. The views of Desert Companion contributing writers are not necessarily the views of Desert Companion or Nevada Public Radio. Contact Chris Bitonti for back issues, which are available for purchase for $7.95.

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shamoon ahmad, m.d., mba, facp kevin m. buckley First Real Estate Companies Louis Castle, Director emeritus Patrick N. Chapin, Esq., Director Emeritus KIRK V. CLAUSEN Wells Fargo Elizabeth FRETWELL, Chair emeritus City of Las Vegas jan L. jones Caesars Entertainment Corporation John R. Klai II Klai Juba Architects Lamar Marchese, President Emeritus William mason Taylor International Corporation Chris Murray Director Emeritus Avissa Corporation Jerry Nadal Cirque du Soleil Peter O’Neill R&R Partners William J. “Bill” Noonan, Director Emeritus Boyd Gaming Corporation kathe nylen PBTK Consulting Anthony j. pearl, esq. The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas MARK RICCiARDI, Esq., director emeritus Fisher & Phillips, LLP Mickey Roemer, Director Emeritus Roemer Gaming

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Companion | june 2013

IT PAYS TO PLAN YOUR EVENT BEFORE THE HOLIDAYS. BOOK BEFORE AUGUST 1 AND SAVE 20%. Every holiday season, you want to outdo what you did last year. This year, the Springs Preserve is giving you a discount to help you exceed people’s expectations without breaking your budget. If you get in early. The Springs Preserve is 180 spectacular acres of museums, gardens, culture and healthy living with a variety of indoor and outdoor event spaces. And it’s even more spectacular when it’s glowing with a colorful array of holiday lights. This year, if you book your holiday event before August 1, you’ll show how frugal you are with money, how you choose to go green because it’s a smarter choice, how you think ahead, and how you support your community. Outdo yourself this holiday season by getting in early. Chelsea Nicole Photography

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to all people


h ow-t o

p h oto s : s c ot t d i c k i n s h e e t s

Notes from an Insta-guru







In my hands, Instagram is to photography what doodling is to art: a lesser form, but one that’s faster, looser, more experimental — and way more fun. Somewhere, I have a fancy digital SLR, and it’s great at producing images of things that look exactly like those things. But Instagram made me realize that I don’t want to be a photographer, with all the boringly acquired expertise that entails. I just want to zap some weird images into this world, and Instagram, with its filters and simple picture-tweaking tools, both forgives my technical impatience and urges me to keep trying new tricks. Of course, most Instagrammers use the app to impart a mildly arty look to snaps of their daily mundanities — friends, kids, pets, an endless buffet of food shots. I’ve done that, too — sometimes you just gotta show off that plate of barbecue. But if I want ordinary sights, I’ll look at life itself. From the eight megapixels of my cell cam, I want a heightened reality, a playful surreality and, if I’m lucky, perhaps an image I haven’t seen before. I’m not an artist, but I can try to think like one: What’s a good subject? What’s good composition? Symmetry. Maybe asymmetry. Balance. (1) A building and a tree aren’t equal in mass, but here they take up roughly similar amounts of the picture plane. More important, the composition is the subject, embodied in the emotional balance between the somber architecture and the stark, wintry branches, the mood deepened by Instagram’s “Brannan” filter. That’s not exactly what the scene looked like, but it’s definitely what I saw. Same principles apply when you get close (2). The surprise perspective, the resonant mood, reframing the familiar to emphasize a meaning, in this case nostalgia for my long-gone youth. Why merely document when you can idealize? Thanks to cloud-filtered sunlight, Instagram’s “Jefe” filter and the contrast function, a tumbledown shack in rural Utah (3) acquires the kind of hyperreal, artdirected look that actual life so rarely provides. One of the app’s signature functions is selective focus. I recently snapped my granddaughter continued on pg. 12

Hear more

Brenda Priddy discusses “car spy photography” on “KNPR’s State of Nevada” at | 11

surrounded by the buildings of Salt Lake City (4); with just her in focus, the photo takes on an ephemeral, dreamy aspect, as if she’s a fairy-tale figure popping out of an urban diorama. Once you’ve tweaked a shot, you can save and re-import it into Instagram for more treatment. It’s hard to imagine a more ordinary picture than storage units in Henderson (5). But I liked the down-themiddle, light-dark composition, so I cycled it through Instagram a few times, upping the contrast and applying the “Jefe” filter with each round. Now the doors on the left glow an unnatural orange from their pool of impenetrable shadow; on the right, the pavement looks apocalyptically ravaged, ready for a Mad Max moment. But you can always get crazier. Apart from Instagram, my cell-cam has built-in shooting modes, including “negative.” When I used that to shoot a luau fire (6), I got this wondrous picture of black flame. Which Instagram’s filters pushed even further from easy recognition, at last giving me the quiet satisfaction of creating an image I’d never seen before. — Scott Dickensheets

ON THE TOWN Ready for some musical fireworks? There’ll be plenty at the Las Vegas Philharmonic’s 4th with the Phil July 4 at Symphony Park. Info:

12 | Desert

Companion | June 2013

f a m i ly

One campy summer Ah, the sounds of summer: poolside splashes, the spritz of cold soda cans, the giggles of kiddos — and their inevitable whining that there’s nothing to do. Here’s a cure for those quintessential summertime boredom blues: March them to summer camp — but not just any summer camp. Far from your usual fishing-and-campfires affairs, these camps are like mini-magnet schools sure to stoke your kids’ latest phases and crazes. The Fashion District in New York City has nothing on Fashion Camp LV. Here, kids will learn to create inspiration boards, as well as sketch and drape on half-scale models. Budding designers will go home with practically a closet’s worth of accessories — tote bag, bracelet, T-shirt, a belt — some of which they design and create themselves. No poseurs here: Fashion Camp LV (, 475-5512) promises that all its instructors have experience in the fashion industry. Classes are half- or full-day, appropriate for ages 7-17, and cost includes all materials. Speaking of New York, Camp Broadway at The Smith Center (, 7492538) brings a small bite of the Big Apple to little theater-lovers in Las Vegas. Styled after theatrical summer camps taught in New York City and other cities, Camp Broadway aims to inspire creative expression and teach the grand traditions of theatrical performance. It’s the one time you’ll want your kids to act out. One-week sessions take place in June and July for ages 6-9 and 10-17.

Little Earth-lovers might enjoy Summer Camp at Springs Preserve. Nature walks, treeclimbing and gorilla nest exploring — along with its rainforest exhibit, Gila monsters and all kinds of arts and crafts — reflect Springs Preserve (, 822-7700) at its best. Top that off with some classic camp activities each week — swimming at the YMCA, acting with the Drama Kids International — and you’ve got the best of both worlds. Weekly sessions start June 10-Aug. 23 for ages 6-12. The Summer Camp at Discovery Children’s Museum (, 382-5437) — now settled into its big new digs at Symphony Park — promises to keep kids of all ages busy and engaged. So much to explore in so little time: chemistry, space, food and animals for starters, and arts, culture and acting for a grand (and tiring!) finish. Sessions run July 1-Aug. 2 with halfand full-day options for ages 6-9 and 10-12. Fans of high-flying trapeze artists and bendy contortionists may be intrigued by The Las Vegas Performing Arts Intensive (thelvpai. com, 375-2028). Summer camps don’t get any more Vegas than this: Kids will learn to dance, sing, act and even drum with performers, choreographers and directors from Blue Man Group, Celine Dion, Love, Le Rêve, The Jabbawockeez, Lion King and other Strip staples. Sessions take place at Art Square Theater at Art Square downtown, and run July 1-19 for ages 10-14. — Stefanie Van Aken

I l l u s t r at i o n : B r e n t h OL M ES

continued from pg. 11






Monika Haczkiewicz Teenager, ballerina PHOTOGRAPH BY Jerry Metellus

In many ways, Monika Haczkiewicz is your typical 15-year-old girl. She loves to shop and hang out with friends, she reads avidly and she peppers her conversations with the word like. But this petite, pre-professional ballerina is anything but average. The native Las Vegan and eldest daughter of Cirque du Soleil acrobats, Haczkiewicz (hutch-kuh-veech) has inherited some ideal genes. “Her body is super flexible,” says her ballet instructor, Kyudong Kwak of Kwak Ballet Academy, “and she has control.” Haczkiewicz agrees: “I’m shorter and that helps with a lot of the lifts and stuff.” She’s 5’1” and 86 pounds. But her parents’ genetic influence doesn’t stop there. “She has guts on stage. She’s not scared. That’s a huge thing,” says Kwak, who says that many dancers — heck, most people — get nervous come show time. Haczkiewicz donned her first pair of ballet slippers at the age of three. Then she discovered the stage at six, as a cartwheeling bonbon in Nevada Ballet Theatre’s 2004 presentation of “The Nutcracker.” She hasn’t looked back, performing in one version or another of “The Nutcracker” every year since. For the past three years, she’s been dancing every young ballerina’s dream role — the coveted part of Clara — in the Las Vegas Ballet Company’s rendition of the Christmas classic. “Being on stage is like the best thing in the world. I just feel I can let go and do whatever I want,” Haczkiewicz says. (Then the ballerina checks herself: “Obviously, I can’t. I wouldn’t.”) Haczkiewicz trains for two hours, three or four evenings a week with Kwak and his wife Yoomi Lee, former principals with Nevada Ballet Theatre. She puts in another four hours on Saturdays. Also, as a student of the Las Vegas Academy’s dance program, she dances for 80 minutes each day as part of her school curriculum. Barre work — the 30 to 45 minutes of each class when Kwak’s dancers utilize the ballet barre to warm up, strengthen muscles, build stamina, im-

prove balance and perfect technique — is Haczkiewicz’s least favorite part. “I hate barre. I cannot stand it. I know it’s really important, but it’s just so boring,” she says, dramatically drawing out the “o” in so — reminding us again that under her tight ballet bun resides a typical teenager. According to longtime ballet critic Hal de Becker, Haczkiewicz’s dreaded barre work is paying off. “She’s special for her attention to neatness, her clean dancing and her accurate footwork — that’s not something you see all the time,” he says. For the second year in a row, Haczkiewicz’s been granted a full-tuition scholarship to attend Pacific Northwest Ballet’s five-week summer intensive program in Seattle, considered one of the best in the country. “Monika is very gifted,” says Abbey Siegel, principal of Pacific Northwest Ballet school. “She has all the attributes you look for in a classical ballet dancer. She has the right proportions, she has long, lean muscles, she has gorgeous arched feet, she has extension and rotation — and she just has a spark to her presence. Those are the kinds of gifts you look for when you’re doing auditions.” Before Haczkiewicz packs her leotards and pointe shoes into her summer bag, she has her work cut out for her. Having recently earned the role of Princess Aurora in Las Vegas Ballet Company’s spring production of “Sleeping Beauty,” she’s already well into rehearsals. “(It’s) going to be challenging for me,” she says of her first principal role, but it’s the sort of challenge the tiny dancer — and anything-but-typical teen — lives for. — Chantal Corcoran

The Las Vegas Ballet Company presents “Sleeping Beauty” 2p June 15 at the Summerlin Library Performing Arts Center, 1771 Inner Circle Drive. Tickets $20. Info:

14 | Desert

Companion | June 2013

I can keep track of my inventory. It’s managing my cash flow I need help with.

Talk to Wells Fargo about managing your business finances Owning a small business is a big opportunity for you, your employees, and your community. We know a lot is riding on your success. That’s why our Wells Fargo bankers are here to help. We can give you the financial guidance you may need to keep your business on track. For example, we can show you how a Merchant Services account can give you reliable payment processing along with superior 24/7 customer support, plus the tools you need to help broaden your customer base, increase sales, and boost your cash flow. You’ll also have access to our Business Insight Resource Center, an online resource for the guidance and information you may need to help achieve your business goals. Let’s start a conversation. Call 1-800-35-WELLS, click or stop by for a complimentary business financial review. © 2012 Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. All rights reserved. Member FDIC. (762402_07098)


trend alert

Know father best

Another patterned tie? Yawn! This Father’s Day, dote on dad with a gift he’ll love

by Christie Moeller

Captain of the team

For the sports enthusiast dad: Tokens & Icons MLB game bat bottle opener. These Major League Baseball-authenticated, game-used bats have been transformed into bottle openers — perfect for cracking open a cold one during the big game. Each receives an ID hologram to verify the exact game the bat was used in and the circumstances of its retirement from play. $85-$125,

Chip off the old microchip

For the techie dad: Sony A99 full-frame DSLR camera. Your father will never miss capturing an awkward family moment again with this fully featured camera packed with bleeding-edge features such as built-in GPS and 1080 video capability. $2799.99, Sony in the Forum Shops at Caesars

Earth to dad ...

For the eco-conscious dad: Alfred Dunhill solar external phone battery charger. This sleek charger will give your father cell juice on the go — using the power of the sun. $195, Neiman Marcus in the Fashion Show Mall

Love ya, pa!

For the hard-working dad: Sam’s Natural Blue Collar Toolbox. This kit will clean up dad’s hands after even the dirtiest jobs. Includes soap, deodorant, walnut scrub, knuckle wax, hand-repair and cedar & salt shoe bags. $54.95,

16 | Desert

Companion | June 2013

Hey, daddy-o!

For the hipster dad: Oliver Peoples Daddy B sunglasses. Favored by hip-hop stars and silver-screen celebs, these strong, simple shades will keep your father in style. $325,

Papa was a rolling stone For the musically minded dad: Tickets to Green Day’s “American Idiot.” After seeing this inspiring musical based on Green Day’s multiplatinum album, dad may just rekindle those rock ’n’ roll dreams and dust off the drum kit in the garage. $24-$129, June 11-16 at The Smith Center,


hit the road

Southwest shutterbug? You’ll trip for these pics

The weight is over

Creek Field station on Mormon Well Road just past the Paiute Indian Reservation on US 95. Shaded by a verdant abundance of indigenous shrubs and trees, the riparian habitat offers countless opportunities for creature shots. Cima townsite. One of the best places to capture winter scenes – snow and mist framing enchantingly dilapidated wooden shacks — is at the intersection of Cima Road, Kelso-Cima Road and Morning Star Mining Road. Wintertime also offers chances for dramatic shots of snow on some of the tallest Joshua trees in the area. Full moon risin’. A sunset walk to the top of Kelso Dunes near the Mojave Preserve visitor’s center is always enthralling, but the vistas are especially bewitching when a full moon rises. Carry water and a flashlight for the hike back to the car. The acropolis at Lake Mead. No hand of man created Temple Bar, but from a distance this imposing redgold sandstone bluff, accessible from US 93 and Temple Bar Road, looks like an ancient citadel. Petroglyphs and ancient campsites. A couple of miles south of the famed Eldorado Canyon mining district, a photogenic jumble of boulders known as Knob Hill provides photo opportunities second to none. Old pioneer trails meander among stones bearing petroglyphs carved by early Native Americans. Mysterious sliding stones. Accessible only when the weather is dry, Death Valley’s Racetrack Playa is arguably the most intriguing spot in the park. The giant boulders sitting at the end of their long enigmatic skid marks make captivating photo subjects — as do the unearthly landscapes surrounding the playa. — Mark Sedenquist

Hitting the road with your photo gear in tow? Why strain your neck and back carrying a heavy DSLR when you can capture great pictures with one of the mirrorless digital cameras now on the market? That’s the way many travel photographers are starting to think. Because they have larger sensors for better image quality than point-and-shoots — and they allow users to change lenses — mirrorless cameras offer most of the capabilities of a DSLR in a smaller, lighter body. Mirrorless digital cameras were first developed by Olympus and Panasonic, but now other manufacturers have jumped in with their own versions. My favorite is the Sony Nex-7. It may not be the smallest camera you can buy in this format, but the wealth of features packed into its compact frame makes the small amount of extra weight well worth it. At 12.5 ounces (including the battery), it’s still far lighter than a DSLR. Another attractive option is the Olympus PEN E-PM2. Photog-

18 | Desert

Companion | June 2013

Do the wave Valley of Fire abounds with hidden destinations of breathtaking beauty. Thanks to a single photo in a German travel magazine, the dramatic “Fire Wave” is hidden no more Near the road to White Dome, this ancient seabed has maintained its dynamic appearance, with contrasting stripes of red and white swirling through the rock, giving the illusion of a standing wave. For the best photos, take this brand new trail near sunset, when the fading sun shines directly on the sandstone. Difficulty: Easy. — Alan Gegax

raphers more used to pointand-shoot cameras will find its controls easy to use, and they’ll be pleased by the great photo quality. All this, and it weighs — including the battery — less than 10 ounces. Your neck will be thanking you, too. An additional advantage these new cameras offer is that they need lighter tripods to support them. If you’re still schlepping around that big ol’ DSLR and a heavy tripod to hold it up, it might be time to think about going mirrorless. — Mark Holmes Mark Holmes is a professional photographer and author of “Digital SLR Photography eLearning Kit For Dummies.”

L i z a r d p h oto : b r e n t h o l m e s , fIRE wAV E PHOTO : A l a n G e g a x

With a wealth not only of flora and fauna, but also spectacular views and extremes of weather, the desert is a photographer’s dream landscape. Here are eight spots within hours of the Strip where you can bring home some of the Mojave’s magic with a camera. Cowboys and western realism. Check out the abandoned cattle corral at McClanahan Spring. Seen from I-15 just north of Jean is a dirt road that appears to run in a straight line past the Jean dry lakebed into the distant mountains. The site of the last active cattle ranch in Clark County, it’s a terrific setting for capturing authentic images of the Old West. Trains, trees, and trestles. Before 9/11, you could drive the entire southern Meadow Valley Road between Glendale and Caliente on a road that frequently crossed the Union Pacific railroad. These days, access is blocked by a gate just past Stuart Ranch. Fortunately, just before the gate you can catch locomotives crossing the trestle on their slow way down Meadow Valley Wash. Birds, lizards, and turtles. They’re just a few of the native inhabitants in the ponds and creeks around Corn

Working together we can ...

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Who will lead the school district now? Hear a discussion on “KNPR’s State of Nevada” at www.desertcompanion/hearmore



See me after class

Whether you’ve got a precocious pre-schooler or an overwhelmed college freshman, these organizations offer support beyond the classroom By Chantal Corcoran | Photography Brent Holmes Savvy parents and students know that a lot of learning takes place well outside the classroom — and we’re not just talking about hitting the books after hours at the dining room table. From free tutoring services to littleknown scholarship opportunities, there’s a veritable library of educational support programs out there for growing young minds. Check out this list for ways to power up your children’s educational experience — and move your striving student to the head of the class. What you need: A scholarship to preschool What you should do: Call the United Way of Southern Nevada’s Tuition Assistance Preschool Scholarships hotline at 892-2361 in mid-June What you’ll get: The folks at the United Way of Southern Nevada know the importance of a strong educational foundation. They’ve got studies! According to their research, students who are performing well by the third grade will generally go on to graduate from high school on time. This is why the United Way has brought HighScope, a child-initiated active learning program — think high-octane preschool — to 18 early childhood education centers in the valley. But that’s not all: The United Way’s Tuition Assistance Preschool Scholarships have 350 scholarships available annually Supply-side education: Communities for Nevada preschoolers. The roughly in Schools gives students the tools $3,000 scholarships cover half of the annual for classroom success. preschool tuition due. Qualifying families must meet federal poverty guidelines, have one full-time working family member, and What you’ll get: A live tutor to walk you through that math or agree to volunteer 100 hours at their child’s science problem that has you stuck. These BrainFuse teachers are preschool. The next round of scholarships is available July 1. available daily 1-10p to help students in preschool through to college — Extra credit: The United Way also has Family Engagement even those enrolled in adult education courses. There are also online Resource Centers in five Vegas schools, including Silverado, Eldorado, practice tests to help sharpen your skills. You can even upload your Sunrise Mountain, Western and Clark. These centers function as cozy English papers to the site and, within 24 hours, a teacher will read and places for students to put in extra studying, get tutoring or even to find return it to you with suggestions for improvement. Literary classics solace from the pressures of high school. are also available in Ebook form, so the whole class can check out the same book at the same time, meaning no more running all over town in What you need: Homework help search of that last precious copy of “East of Eden.” What you should do: Go to, the Las Vegas-Clark County Extra credit: In April, 77 percent of students surveyed said that the Library District’s surprisingly awesome website

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Companion | June 2013

What you need: Pencils, eyeglasses, a meal or any number of things to ensure kids stay focused and succeed in school What you should do: Pop into the Communities in Schools of Nevada resource room at your high school, before, during or after school What you’ll get: Part of America’s leading drop-out prevention program, Communities in Schools will connect you with the community resources you need to graduate, whatever those needs may be. “We offer snacks, access to the food pantry, clothing, hygiene products, school supplies and a caring ear,” says Jenni Lopardo, site coordinator at Chaparral High School. Their coordinators can also hook you up with tutors, behavioral assistance, medical help and more. Their resource rooms can be found in 12 different schools in Southern Nevada and three in Northeastern Nevada. They also have coordinators working in certain elementary and middle schools. Can’t find them in your school? Consult your guidance counselor. Extra credit: Like many students throughout the valley, Rancho High School senior Ty Gonzalez depended heavily on the assistance of CISN. “Without Communities In Schools, I wouldn’t be standing where I am today, getting ready to graduate.” What you need: Academic support at UNLV What you should do: Check out UNLV’s Academic Success Center on Facebook What you’ll get: An up-to-date, subjectspecific tutoring schedule. The Academic Success Center offers tutoring at no additional cost, six days each week during the school year and five days a week in summer. Tutoring for your more common subjects, like math, chemistry, Spanish, biology and accounting, is available pretty much all the time. For more specialized subjects, like Japanese or organic chemistry, see the schedule. Tutors — current students who have been recommended by faculty and selectively screened by staff — meet UNLV students in a corner of the library on the second floor for drop-in labs where students are grouped by subject to work together with the help of the

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library’s BrainFuse service helped them to improve their grades, and 88 percent said that it gave them more confidence in their school work. To access these tools, all you need is a library card. (Students under 15 years of age will need a parent’s signature.)

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education tutors. Commonly, supportive study groups and friendships develop as a result of these sessions. Extra credit: In April alone, there were more than 2,000 visits to the tutors’ corner of the library. Academic success coaching is also available for incoming students. Mentors will review course selections with you, suggest techniques for studying and offer counsel. To get your own personal “academic” trainer, contact the Academic Success Center through Facebook or at What you need: Scholarships for your higher education What you should do: Visit the Public Education Foundation at and click on “Scholarships” What you’ll get: A good shot at taking a bite out of the high cost of college. Since 1994, the Public Education Foundation has doled out more than 4,200 scholarships, totaling $9,000,000, to Southern Nevada seniors heading to college, either in-state or out-of state. Today, it’s got more than 140 different scholarships available, ranging from $500 to $10,000, provided by local businesses and organizations, community leaders, individuals and families. The criteria can include academic or athletic accomplishments, planned areas of study, enrollment at a particular high school or financial needs. Review committees select recipients based on applications, then recipients are notified and invited to a fancy scholarship recognition luncheon where recipients and donors have the chance to meet each other before the students head off to conquer the collegiate world. To apply, you’ll need to submit a transcript detailing the firstsemester grades of your senior year, a personal essay, letters of recommendation and an online application form. Extra credit: This year, 440 scholarships totaling more than $920,000 were awarded to 333 local seniors. Both Erica Bennett from East Career and Technical Academy and Kayle Anowlton from Foothill High School received the coveted Opportunity Scholarship (from an anonymous donor) valued at $60,000.        “Look and see which ones you qualify for and start writing those essays now,” suggests Clarice Donnelly, PEF’s Grants and Scholarships Coordinator. Next year’s applications must be submitted by February 2014, but will be accepted as early as November.  






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Do pit pulls have a bad reputation for no good reason? Hear a discussion on “KNPR’s State of Nevada” at


Party animals are more than welcome at Hot Diggity Dog Daycare.

Let the fur fly

When pets want to party — or just unwind with their humans — Las Vegas has plenty of doggone good options By Rebecca Zisch

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Admit it, pet lovers: Sometimes it’s hard to say goodbye to our fluffy, feathered and scaled friends when we leave the house. But after you’ve played in the park, relaxed on the patio of your favorite coffee spot and perused the aisles of a big chain pet store, it’s hard to know where else you and your pets are welcome. What if your cat wants to hang out at a bar? Or your dog likes to go swimming? Or your ferret enjoys watching movies? You’re in good company. There are a whole litter of businesses in the valley whose pet-friendly policies and perks may surprise you. You probably know Crown & Anchor (1350 E. Tropicana Ave., 7398676, as a reliable source of English pub food, drink and sports-watching. They do whatever they can to create an au-

thentic pub atmosphere for their customers, including darts, Stilton cheese — and a petfriendly patio at their eastside location. When I used to visit my great aunt and uncle in their small English village, we would never walk to the neighborhood pub without their Jack Russell terrier. At Crown & Anchor, visiting pets have to stay on the patio, so maybe they don’t have a great view of the rugby matches on TV, but feel free to order a bowl of water and some dog biscuits for your canine friends. (I’ve also been told that at least one visiting cat on a harness and leash likes to the sit in the beautiful shade tree in the corner.) There are a few outdoor shopping districts in the valley where families are welcome to walk their dogs. But Town Square (6605 Las Vegas Blvd. S., has them beat for all-around pet friendliness. There’s the manicured grassy pasture, water stations and well-stocked doggy bags for cleaning up after our friends. Marketing Director Jameson Mapes is particularly fond of the gentleman who brings his ferret for a regular constitutional around the square. In

Most leash-trained animals are welcome to window shop at Town Square, and join humans for outdoor dining and summer movies. Bonus: water stations and cleanup bags! fact, most leash-trained animals are welcome to window shop — even enter many stores — and join their humans for outdoor dining and free summer movies. The summer movie series begins every Tuesday at sundown from June through August. Debra Heiser, who co-owns the Arts Factory with her husband Wes Myles, welcomes pets and their people enjoying themselves on the Bar + Bistro patio (107 E. Charleston Blvd., #155, 202-6060, So, if

your pets love bluegrass, jazz, reggae, spoken word or a just a quiet night out, this is the place. Its landscaped patio with table service, full bar and fire pit feels like a friendly backyard party for artists, poets and musicians. For the athletic family with furry members, Paddle to the Core (567-6128, suplv. com) is waiting for you at Lake Las Vegas. Have you ever seen a goat paddleboard? Owner Kathy Holesapple has. As long as your pet is used to swimming in a properly fitted | 25


Town Square’s amenities include green spaces for active pups.

life jacket, Holesapple encourages pet owners to try paddle boarding with their companions. Pets can be on the paddleboard or just swim behind their owners. “We just want to encour-

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age people to get out with their pets. That’s the bottom line,” she says. If you’re coming with a pet, plan on making reservations for a Wednesday. They prefer pets have their own

life jackets, but they’re also available for an additional $10 rental. And if you have recently adopted a local rescue dog, bring in proof of adoption within 30 days and Paddle to the Core will give you and your new furry friend one free paddle session. You may have heard of dock diving as a canine sport. But Dock Dogs Las Vegas ( is more than just a competitive organization. It’s a volunteer-run social group promoting health, wellness and fun for both people and dogs. The organized practice diving sessions at places such as Cold Creek and Lake Las Vegas are open to dogs training for matches as well as dogs just having fun. A $35 annual membership includes diving practice and regular seminars for people and dogs taught by veterinary professionals. Learn more about canine chiropractic, summer safety, nutrition and first aid, all while socializing with like-minded dog lovers. If you prefer cocktails to wellness seminars and your dogs like to make new friends, then put Yappy Hour on your calendar.

Rumor Boutique Hotel (455 E. Harmon Ave., 877-997-8667, hosts this event 6-9 p.m. on the third Thursday of every month. Humans can relax to the DJ’s mix with drinks and “yappetizers” while dogs play safely on- or off-leash in the hotel’s enclosed courtyard. Big dogs, little dogs, pedigree dogs, rescue dogs — any pooch who’s friendly, obedient and up-to-date on vaccines is welcome. This event attracts a wonderfully diverse crowd of people and dogs — even people without dogs because it’s just so much fun. For a small cover charge, the hotel provides doggie goodie bags, plentiful bowls of water and staff to clean up any doggie accidents. Where can you go if your dog already has lots of friends? Throw your canine compadre a private birthday party. The amiable and thoroughly professional staff at Hot Diggity Dog Daycare (3290 N. Buffalo Drive, 405-7774, will help you choose a theme, provide costumes, take photographs, order the cake from Three Dog Bakery and send out the email invitations. Only dogs and humans are allowed, and canine guests must

The patio at Crown and Anchor is a fine place to relax with your best friend — and a brew.

show proof of vaccinations before the party can begin. The private party room can comfortably fit up to 20 partying dogs and their people. Party packages start at $50. For that price, you can afford to be just a little eccentric.

Rebecca Zisch owns Friends Forever Counseling and co-hosts the Meowster Podcast at She is a cat behaviorist, pet grief counselor and veterinary technician. | 27


What’s the state of the Las Vegas art scene? Hear a discussion on “KNPR’s State of Nevada” at


The work of art


Talent? James Henninger scoffs at the idea. The secret to this painter’s growing profile: discipline, practice, work. And then more work By Scott Dickensheets Photos by Brent Holmes

1. Go ahead, compliment artist James Henninger on his talent. That’s him, lounging on the afternoon patio at Bar + Bistro, bald guy with the groovy beard; don’t worry, he’s approachable despite those intense eyes. Stroll up and tell him you admire his sharply rendered portraits or photorealistic figure studies, almost always painted in monochromatic tones. (Actual viewer comment: “That’s a painting? It looks like a photo.”) Be sure to use that word, talent. He hears it a lot. “Me, personally, I refuse to believe in it,” he might say. “There’s no talent involved. Zero talent.” He will say this with an air of complete frankness, despite the evidence of his own hands. “I have the ability to do it.” Petal power: the Talk to Henninger long enough and he’ll say wildflowers of a few things that’ll have you shaking your head, Ridgecrest about his work habits and productivity, his distant family, his single-mindedness, how he’s intimidated by color — but this is a genuine full-stop moment. Zero talent? Is that a put-on, a private joke? “I failed every art class I ever took,” says James Who is this guy? Henninger. Good question. In a visual arts community that’s often preoccupied with questions of Vegas-ness — the relationship of the artist to the city, how to use derstandable, perhaps. Now 44, he says he left his estranged family at 15 Vegas in your art or be inspired by it (because who would squander this “and never looked back,” along the way creating himself as a man and a dazzling visual richness?) — he’s something of an anomaly. He doesn’t do self-taught artist (“I failed every art class I ever took”) through years of Vegas, unless a dead-on portrait of Mayor Carolyn Goodman counts. No subsistence jobs and nonstop drawing and painting, until he became the neon. No spectacle mentality. No interrogations of artifice vs. reality. And professional artist he is. Given all that self-determining, it’s no surprise unlike most of the Arts District creatives who get mad ink in the weeklies, that he sticks gamely to his lack of faith in a quality as evanescent — and, he doesn’t turn out academic-style work, inlaid with symbolism and puntherefore, possibly fleeting — as “talent.” gent with cultural politics, or pop-art traipses along the high-low divide. He tells a story about his father: “He did a little bit of drafting work,” “I love the figures, I love the face,” he says, and he can paint the hell out Henninger says, his words hanging in the empty air of 303 North, his tiny of a Morgan Freeman portrait or a naked torso. Looks like a photo, as you gallery in the Arts Factory. “He wouldn’t really use a ruler, but he would may have heard. So don’t go on about zero talent, dude. make these ruler-straight lines. It was amazing. God, how do you do that? But what he’s really getting at is a distinction between art as a conHe said, ‘You draw a line long enough, you’ll eventually get good at it.’” sciously acquired skill, and art as something one is merely born with. Un-

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Life and works: Above, samples and supplies from James Henninger’s studio. At right, Henninger applies a blowtorch to pennies for a sculptural project.

But surely some talent is necessary to seal the deal? Nope. “That’s all it is. Practice, practice, practice.” Just this once, don’t believe him. 2. Before his leaving at 15, there was his father’s ex-wife, who painted. “A lot of ethereal stuff — this was during the ’60s and ’70s,” Henninger says. In Southern California. “She did a lot of astrology-type stuff, constellations and so forth.” The subjects don’t matter; what mesmerized 5-year-old James was watching her create something out of nothing — art’s primal dynamic, after all. It was a life-shaping realization. “Since then I wanted to be as good as or better than her. That was one of my goals.” Southern California in the late ’70s and early ’80s must’ve presented a rich zeitgeist from which an eager and developing young artist could draw: the waning of disco, the rise of West Coast punk, the first stirrings of West Coast hip-hop; the dawn of the Reagan era; the surf and skate scenes; Hollywood. But even then

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Henninger was stubbornly focused. He says almost none of that cultural tumult found its way into the pen-and-ink drawings he did then. Figures and faces, remember. And art classes? A waste. “I didn’t get what they were trying to do, or the rules, I never really understood,” he says. “So I always wanted to do my own thing.” Two decades of mostly crappy jobs he’d take to keep himself in art supplies — “you name it, I’ve done it, from concrete work to drywall, construction and fast food, once” — found him a few years into his second stint in Las Vegas, taking stock of his life. Fifty hours a week working in a print shop, riding the bus a few hours every day. Frustrating, that. It left him too little time for art. He’d graduated from drawings to acrylics, and then to encaustic (pigments mixed with wax). His work had taken on new levels of photorealism — and, at last, salability. He began to make as much from selling paintings as from his full-time job. About a year ago, he called his girlfriend, Gia Iacuaniello, also an artist. “I told her, ‘I’m gonna quit my job.’ And she goes, ‘What are you and what do you do?’ Well,

I’m a painter and I want to paint. And she was, ‘Then do it.’” He did, and hasn’t looked back. “Pretty much this man lives and breathes art,” Gia says. “I’m not sure we talk about anything else, really. If he is not painting he is reorganizing his paints by size and color, and his tools by what medium they are used for.” 3. If you want to shape your life rather than be shaped by it, to remain in your studio instead of laboring at a construction site, here’s one way. Say you decide to learn how to paint with encaustic, not one of your more common techniques. You give yourself 30 days to figure it out. In that time, you don’t draw, you don’t sketch, you don’t pick up a pen or a brush. You’re still working in the print shop, but somehow you plow through hundreds of pages of information on encaustics, packing in everything your brain can hold — recipes, history, techniques, other practitioners. You learn to make your own wax-pigment cakes instead of buying them. You create and build a tool to

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Me time: Henninger painted this self-portrait in fewer than 24 hours.

pinpoint-deliver the hot wax to the surface. Indeed, you pretty much ignore everything that isn’t encaustic-intensive. “He didn’t call me or answer the phone for a week!” Gia says. “He was that devoted to finding out how to do it correctly and define his style. I could have killed him over it.” In other words, you totally invest in yourself, go all-in on the notion that talent is really applied learning. For Henninger, it paid off in new levels of control and photorealism. The response he got to a quartet of Beatles portraits told him he was onto something. “I knew I had something different,” he says. “It set me apart from everyone else here, and that was really important.” If straightforward photorealism sounds rather limiting, Henninger toys with it a bit, sometimes leaving elements unpainted or going impressionistic (as in a nude he gave a downtown chef in exchange for a meal). Lately he’s painted a few nudes from a distorted, vertiginously low vantage point. It’s not an especially flattering perspective, particularly if the subject is in any way lumpy or unsvelte, so the pieces nicely subvert any expectation on the viewer’s part that figure studies should generally celebrate the beauty of the human form. And yet they still capture the figure’s essence. “James is a savant who articulates an innate mastery of the figure flawlessly,” says gallerist

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art Laura Henkel, whose Sin City Gallery is also in the Arts Factory. And although Michelangelo never painted The Beatles, she makes the comparison anyway, specifically to the master’s unfinished Slaves sculptures: “The forms emerge, breaking free of all conventional restraints, ready to engage the beholder with a captivating presence.” It paid off professionally, too. The years of


non-art jobs are behind him. “I’m doing very well,” he says. “I’m very happy that I’m not working at Burger King.” He keeps his prices affordable, he says, and in the right mood, “If I’m doing a small one, buy me a couple of beers, you know? I don’t care.” Mostly, he works. The more Henninger describes himself and his routine, the more he seems like a figure from a Ralph Steadman sketch — manic,

with the



h th

obsessed, arms a twisted blur, overfilled skull bursting open. He says he paints an average of two pieces a day, not waiting for the paint to dry on one before embarking on another. “I want to get it done, get it out of my head,” he says. “In 18-20 months, I’ve done over 600 encaustic paintings.” He says he’s sold every one. (Short of subpoenaing his receipts, there’s no way to verify that, of course.) So you’re not one of those artists who wait for the muse to arrive? “No,” he says. “They’re pussies. No offense.” And because self-invention never stops, he taught himself to make eye-catching wire-mesh sculptures that look like crosshatched drawings, and is heavily researching printmaking techniques. There’s always another skill to pick up. Except color. “Color scares me,” he admits. Shades of gray are controllable; the expressive power of color is a vast and hard-to-harness thing. “When I get enough money that I can take two or three months and really study color, color theory, then yes.” It’ll happen. This is what he does, this is the life he’s made for himself. “I don’t have anything else to do,” he says. He lives in a one-room apartment that is essentially a studio with a bed, “up to my knees in art supplies.” What’s he gonna do, sit around and watch TV? “I crave this. I have to learn as much as possible — I have to figure it out; if I don’t figure it out, I’m gonna go nuts.”


A Henninger sculpture, “Iron Maiden”

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News Reviews Interviews at f i r s t b i t e O n t h e P l at e


The dish

Frosty reception


Eat this now

Wings of desire es39

On the plate

Upcoming dining events


At First Bite




In the spirit of our photo issue, photographer Sabin Orr approached this assignment like a kid in an ice cream shop. Here, Thrifty’s ice cream gets a waffle-icious makeover.

the dish

Cold crush crew


Feeling the heat? Get a lick at some of the coldest, creamiest ice cream stops in town By Kristy totten | Photography SABIN ORR I scream, you scream, we all scream for ... no, no, not frilly cupcakes or fro-yo. Sure, fad desserts have captivated our palates for the past few years, but it’s time to give it up for the sweet treat that’s dominated for centuries. (Seriously! Ice cream dates back to the Roman Empire, when Nero commanded his slaves to retrieve mountain snow to mix with fruit pulp and nectar.) But never mind that dark history. Summer is about indulgence. If you’ve exhausted the menus at your neighborhood chains, try these specialty shops for bold new flavors.

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Something different If you arrive at La Flor de Michoacan (3021 Charleston Blvd. #B, 366-1447) and ask yourself, “Am I in the right place?,” then you’re in the right place. The unassuming nevería (that’s español for “ice cream parlor”) is tucked away in a dusty, mostly deserted East Charleston shopping plaza, which solidifies the shop’s status as a true hidden gem. La Flor serves common flavors alongside intriguing homemade scoops, such as rose petal, pine nut, Mexican eggnog and elote cheesy corn, which sounds questionable but is decidedly

delicious (think sweet corn and Parmesan, and suspend your disbelief ). The ice creams are milky but not too rich, with subtle flavor and satisfying body and chew. Also available are ice pops in guava, cantaloupe, kiwi and mango or pineapple with chili. Tuna, for the record, isn’t what you might fear — it’s prickly pear — but it’s a good example of why you should brush up on your Spanish before visiting. Few of the clerks speak English, so you’ll need to meet them halfway. If you’re craving something perfumey and light, try The Perfect Scoop & Boba Tea (5053 S. Fort Apache Road #104, 701-7888,, which specializes in Asian fruit flavors. The house-made ice creams come in dairy and vegan versions, the latter of which are made with almond or coconut milk, giving them a delicate, icy texture. “People like vegan because they can eat more,” says Peter, the owner, gesturing toward a large cup. And you’ll want to eat as much as possible. Flavors include traditional Western favorites, as well as exotic flavors ranging from “been there”

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Whimsy on ice: samples from The Perfect Scoop & Boba Tea

to “won’t go.” Green tea, lychee, mango and pineapple fall into familiar territory, with black sesame, red bean, ginger and taro somewhere in the middle. Hanging in the outfield is the feared/revered durian fruit, viewed by some as a merciless olfactory assault, and others as a delicacy. Some ice creams, such as lychee, offer mere hints of flavor, while others, like ginger, are captured perfectly — right down to the burn. People fall into two camps when it comes to yuzu: love it or haven’t yet tried it. The fragrant Japanese citrus fruit is often zested and used as a condiment on high-end sushi, but I-Naba (3210 S. Decatur Blvd. #104, 2206060, is taking the peppery cousin of the sour mandarin orange and teaching it to be sweet. The soba and udon noodle restaurant offers different ice creams daily. On the day I visited, I-Naba had yuzu, which has a clean, Greek yogurt-like texture and mild flavor, “coconuts,” as the servers endearingly call it, and the Japanese favorite kinako, which is made from roasted soybean flour and tastes like a malty, egg-based vanilla. Flavors vary by season and chef’s choice, but try sesame or yuzu when they’re available, and be converted. Three things are guaranteed to happen on a visit to Luv-It Frozen Custard (505 E. Oakey Blvd., 384-6452, luvitfrozencustard. com): You’re going to arrive hungry, leave

happy and sometime in between you’re going to be asked for spare change. But the shakedown is clearly worth it. Ask any downtowner where to go for a sweet frozen treat, and nine out of nine Las Vegas loyalists will send you to the little shack in the ’hood that draws latenight lines waiting for a fix of hyper-sweet, eggy swirl. Luv-It serves a slightly grainy recipe in chocolate and vanilla, as well as a flavor of the day ranging from rich (cheesecake luv it and peanut butter) to nutty (banana nut and Swiss almond) to fruity (raspberry, peach and pineapple). And those are only a few of the offerings. Add to the dozens of flavors dozens of ways to have your custard, and you’ve got a brain freeze before you’ve even had a bite. Totally worth it, though, especially if you get to keep your change. Also Asian and new to the scene is Kuma Snow Cream (3735 Spring Mountain Road #206,, the latest project of Chef Jet Tila, who cooked at Wazuzu at Encore before relocating to L.A. Snow cream is what it sounds like — a franken-fusion of snow cone and ice cream that is milky in flavor but fluffy in texture. Servings are shaved into thin, cascading ribbons, which resemble a mound of Fruit by the Foot (plus some actual nutritional value). Kuma, which means “polar bear” in Japanese, will carry four to five staple flavors, including taro, green tea, black sesame and honeydew, plus one or two

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Table 34 Featuring Chef Wes Kendricks’ contemporary American cuisine including safe harbor certified fresh fish, wild game, duck, lamb, angus beef, and comfort food classics. Conveniently located off the 215 and Warm Springs. Dinner Tuesday - Saturday 5pm until closing (around 10pm) 600 E. Warm Springs Road Las Vegas, NV (702) 263-0034 | 37

dining seasonal flavors. Like Pinkberry-esque fro-yo joints, the shop will have a toppings bar and, also like Pinkberry-esque fro-yo joints, the product is more or less guilt-free. With a pedigree like Tila’s, the updated Taiwanese dessert is sure to satisfy.

Good ol’ flavs A tamer, themed alternative to Luv-

It is Nielsen’s Frozen Custard (9595 S. Eastern Ave. #120, 451-4711, Decorated with nostalgic American memorabilia, the parlor serves dense, impossibly smooth custard — chocolate and vanilla daily, plus a special flavor. (Lemon tastes a lot like meringue pie.) There’s a lot to look at while you eat — charming old garage signs, vintage milk bottles and antique ice cream scoops. Cones come in curious plastic sheaths

called “The Buddy System,” a patented dripcatcher reminiscent of a post-surgery dog cone, but you’ll be so busy trying to count Coke logos, you won’t even notice. Thrifty. Need I say more? No, but I’m going to. The iconic drug store brand began popping up around the valley last year and has continued to expand. On the west side, Sweet Addiction (5165 S. Fort Apache Road #160, 570-6993) is making its mark on the beloved California confection by using homemade cookies to make custom, tongue-burningly sweet sandwiches. The funky, modern store carries about two dozen Thrifty flavors, and 10 or so cookies such as snickerdoodle, white chocolate walnut and oatmeal raisin. A bestseller is mint chocolate-chip ice cream with chocolate brownie cookie. Extra cool points because they have a Galaga table game. The nostalgic Huntridge Drug Store (1122 E. Charleston Blvd., 382-7373) has also opened a Thrifty ice cream counter, as have the barebones Smarty’s gas station (3675 S. Durango Drive, 804-0555,, Kate’s Korner Ice Cream Parlor in the South Point hotel-casino (9777 Las Vegas Blvd. S., 796-7111) and namesake Thrifty Ice Cream (2580 Wigwam Parkway, 269-4141).

Feelin’ fancy Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bistro at the Venetian (3355 Las Vegas Blvd. S., 414-6200,, carries four ice cream flavors and four sorbets on any given day, and each captures the essence of its main ingredient. Mint ice cream, for example, isn’t the chalky, pastel-green imposter you might remember from childhood. It’s unexpectedly aromatic, like biting into a sprig of mint. Ditto the dense mandarin orange sorbet, which balances sweet and tart and mimics orange zest to a Z. For a fluffier sorbet, try pineapple, which has an effervescent, champagne quality. Chocolate & Spice (7293 W. Sahara Ave., 527-7772, is a suburban gem with Strip roots. Former Aureole pastry chef Megan Romano’s shop offers two sorbets and two ice creams each day from a menu of 12 decadent flavors such as red velvet, Nutella and avocado tequila. The sorbets share a texture with Mexican fruit pops, and specialties such as gingerbread ice cream stand out for their toothiness. The holiday blend combines dried cranberries and spiced bread for a sweet-butnot-too-sweet dessert that could pass for carrot cake. If your favorite flavor isn’t available, request it for your next visit. The bakery and lunch spot has the feel of a spring wedding, and the ice creams alone are guaranteed to make you fall in summer love.

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June’s dining events you don’t want to miss

eat this now! Our favorite recent dishes that have us coming back for seconds

Small plates, big pours Through June 30. Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar has brought back its popular “Small Plates, Big Pours” promotion. Guests can match any of the restaurant’s seven small plates, including the New Zealand petite lamb chops, lobster tempura and New Bedford scallops, with an oversized wine pour for $24.95. Only available at the bar. Multiple locations,

Project Dinner Table June 8. This regular dinner table gathering brings together lovers of great food, the city’s finest chefs and an outpouring of support for a charitable cause. This month, Project Dinner Table features the chefs of the TAO Group, who will serve up fine cuisine at the trademark long white table at the TPC Las Vegas Golf Course in Summerlin. A portion of the proceeds support First Tee and Shriner’s Hospital. 7p. $175-$214.

Spring Cooking Workshop

Le Poulet wings at SHe

Sea bass crudo

Now under the operational eye of the massive Morton’s restaurant group, this made-over CityCenter steakhouse maintains its female-friendly marketing twist and a menu with something for everyone. The beef is fine but the appetizers stand out, especially these juicy, crisp chicken wings. The meat has been pulled up to approximate a lollipop effect, creating a massive, flavorful bite every time and the perfect surface for a generous slathering of sweet, spicy sauce. There’s tempting Roquefort cheese dip riding shotgun, too. Maybe the ladies love wings too? Brock Radke

The latest cool, creative Japanese restaurant you need to check out — seems like these are popping up once a month now — is Yonaka, which specializes in raw fish but not necessarily just sushi and sashimi. Exhibit A is this combination of chunks of rich sea bass, sweet heirloom tomatoes, candied quinoa, briny orange salmon roe and bright lemon oil. Yonaka’s experimental flavor matchups are hard to compare with more familiar dishes and hard to describe. Let’s try “deliciously brilliant.” BR

She In Crystals at CityCenter, 254-2376

Yonaka 4983 W. Flamingo Road #A, 685-8358

at Yonaka

June 15. In “The Art of Smoked Food: Slow and Low Cookery,” Springs Cafe chefs will teach enrollees the method of cooking “low and slow.” If you can smoke it, they cover it. Enrollees will learn how to create smoked salmon and beef brisket, as well as a Memphis-style BBQ sauce, in addition to learning cold smoking vs. hot smoking techniques. 10a. $30$40. Springs Preserve, | 39


At f i r s t b i t e

Hakkasan By DEBBIE LEE Photograph Christopher Smith

My little dumplings: hakka-steamed dim sum platter

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Step inside Hakkasan at MGM Grand and the first thing you may notice on the way to your seat are a pair of turntables. It’s an expected sight, given that much of the buzz surrounding the $100 million project focuses on the property’s multi-level nightclub rather than its ground-floor restaurant. But the dining room, which opened in early May, is something to be celebrated in its own right. This is the 11th outpost for the venerated Michelin-starred restaurant, as well as the Strip’s biggest fine dining debut of the year. And I mean that literally — the space is 20,000 square feet and seats 250 guests. So it should come as no surprise that the cost of dining at this glorified chain is also over the top. But do the flavors match the prices? Of the signature cocktails ($17), the Smoky Negroni (with Ransom Old Tom gin and a smoke infusion) is bold and heavy on the booze. For something more clean and crisp, try the Shiso Gimlet, which is brightened with yuzu marmalade. If Chinese appetizers conjure images of crab Rangoon from your local takeout joint, Hakkasan may not be the place for you. The $28 dim sum platter — eight precious bites of scallop, shrimp, perch and duck — is superior to anything served on Spring Mountain Road. As for the sesame prawn toast, a $22 price tag is initially offensive, but then justified when the first bite reveals a lava-like filling of foie gras on the inside. Unfortunately, entrees may leave you underwhelmed. One-percenters with a taste for extravagance can peruse a section of the menu labeled “Supreme Special Dishes,” which includes a $450 whole braised abalone (it wasn’t available on opening weekend) and

We like it fresh. Our cuisine is prepared using all natural, sustainable and locally sourced ingredients wherever possible.

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PURCHASE OR MORE Berry bubbly: Strawberries and champagne

a $168 Emperor’s seafood platter. The most affordable option on the list is the Lion’s Head Meatballs ($58), a classic Chinese dish that arrives in the form of two softball-sized hunks of pork. The flavor is a dead ringer for Spam, which makes an interesting match for the heady black truffles in the accompanying sauce. A braised Maine lobster from elsewhere on the menu does not indicate that only half of the crustacean is served. It’s also skimpy on the meat, but the dish is redeemed by a serving of silky, handmade spinach noodles on the side. For the experience to end on a high note, dessert is mandatory. A peanut butter parfait with cherry jam and brûléed banana is simultaneously sophisticated and simple. And a panna cotta with Harry’s strawberries is plated like an edible terrarium. It’s a stunning, sweet-and-tart finish to the meal. (Never mind that neither is even remotely Chinese.) If you haven’t gotten the hint, dining at Hakkasan is an experience that will require deep pockets. But if you’ve already shelled out hundreds to get inside the club, why not give it a try? Go for Deadmau5, stay for the dim sum.

Hakkasan Inside the MGM Grand, 891-7888

*Valid on dine in only. Not valid during Happy Hour Not valid on takeout or catering or weekly favorites. Offer cannot be combined with any other coupons, discounts or promotions. No cash value.Expires 7/1/13 MM81

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Please RSVP by October 4, 2011 by visiting | 41


PHOTO SHOWCASE JUNE 6, 6 P.M. at ALIOS GALLERY, 1217 S. Main St. (south of Charleston Blvd., across the street from Casa don Juan)

photo contest

See the best photos from Desert Companion past and present — as well as finalist photos from Desert Companion’s “Focus on Nevada” photo contest. Join us as we celebrate the contest winners and award the prizes. RSVP @ for more details.


It’s no secret that Las Vegas is a visually stunning city. But sometimes, there’s much more than meets the eye. Here, three of the city’s premier photographers share their unique visions of Las Vegas culture, cuisine and architecture.

Photos B y Jer r y Metellus | SA B IN ORR | CHRISTOPHER SMITH

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Da n c i n g b l u e s For this shoot, I invited six Cirque du Soleil dancers for a day of fun, photographic choreography and creativity. I “bathed” them in a blueish light, in addition to changing the white balance, to enhance the blue tones to produce an ethereal feel. I had the dancers show me an improvised movement or a partial choreography, and then I used my dance background to correct, modify and mold the final, critical lines destined for capture. — Jerry Metellus Danc e rs : V a nes s a Reyes - G o l d i n g , Greg S a m p le, Mi g u e l Pe r e z , T ina C a nnon, S a n d r i n e M atte i a nd J a c q ui Guimo n d | 45

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now w e ' r e cook ing Since late 2008, I’ve been periodically photographing Thomas Keller’s Bouchon in the Venetian hotel-casino. My main goal has been to convey the unseen aspects of fine dining on the Strip: the long hours of hard work and preparation the entire staff puts in — while also maintaining a level of precision that makes the Las Vegas culinary scene so famous. I photograph what the typical dining patron never sees and perhaps never thinks about. — Sabin Orr

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CITYCENTER LENS: Pinhole Film: 4x5 Ilford FP4 Plus black & white negative, ISO 125 shutter speed: 16 seconds f-stop: 257

ARIA Valet fountain LENS: Pinhole Film: 4x5 FujiChrome Provia 100F shutter speed: 8 seconds f-stop: 257

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pinhole w izar d When the idea of a photo issue first came up, I instantly thought of doing a shoot with a pinhole camera. Why go through the trouble in an age of instant photos and digital cameras? Sometimes, slow is more fun: engineering the camera, waiting for the right time to capture the image, processing the film. But that doesn’t mean there wasn’t suspense. Relying on my calculations — such as the dimensions of the camera and size of the pinhole, which gave me the base f-stop to set the exposure time — I took each photo with just one exposure, with the hope that when I received the film back, all my math was correct. — Christopher Smith | 53

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The VEnetian LENS: Pinhole Film: 4x5 Ilford FP4 Plus black & white negative, ISO 125 shutter speed: 8 seconds f-stop: 257 The Hotel at mandalay bay At Sunrise LENS: Pinhole Film: 4x5 FujiChrome Provia 100F shutter speed: 30 minutes f-stop: 257 Mandalay Bay II LENS: Pinhole Film: 4x5 FujiChrome Provia 100F shutter speed: 1 minute, 30 seconds f-stop: 257 Meet LENS: Pinhole Film: 4x5 Ilford FP4 Plus black & white negative, ISO 125 shutter speed: 16 seconds f-stop: 257

Lewis and 4th LENS: Pinhole Film: 4x5 Ilford FP4 Plus black & white negative, ISO 125 shutter speed: 16 seconds f-stop: 257 | 55

Desert Companion

O N N E VA DA photo



Your shutter finger must be exhausted. We asked you to capture the spirit of Nevada — and did you ever. From gorgeous landscapes to candid portraits of city life, we received more than 1,500 entries in our inaugural “Focus on Nevada” photo contest. Congratulations to the winners and finalists, whose work we showcase on the following pages. (And see below for how you can cast a “reader’s choice” vote for your favorite photo right from your smartphone.) Of course, these are more than just amazing photos of Nevada. Better yet, they offer fresh and startling perspectives on our home that are eye-opening in the truest sense.

Honor ab le men t ion , amateur /s t uden t Patr i ck r eilly Union Pacific rail car in Rhyolite CAMERA: Canon 5D Mark II LENS: Canon 24-70 mm ISO: 640 shutter speed: 1/50 f-stop: 11

V ote !

What’s your favorite photo? Vote with your smartphone right now. You’ll be entered into a drawing to win a $100 dining certificate. Here’s how: 1. Download the Digimarc Discover app from the iTunes app store or Google Play 2. Launch the app 3. Point your camera at the photo on the next page with the — and vote for your favorite picture!

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Op p o si te P ag e Hono rab le m e ntio ns , a ma te ur/s tud e nt Nick Po rtz "Little Boxes" CAMERA: Nikon D7000 LENS: AF-S Nikkor 18-105mm ISO: 100 shutter speed: 1/100 f-stop: 13 Ma ur ic io R e y e s CityCenter

Honor a ble men t ion , amateu r/ st uden t anthon y vega “I took this photo at the Cleveland Clinic’s Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health. From what I was told, the mind is at ease when hallways, windows and chairs are at an angle or have an arc. I stared at this chair for a long time, but never actually sat in it.” CAMERA: Canon T4i

CAMERA: Sony NEX-5N LENS: Sony E 18-55 mm ISO: 100 shutter speed: 1/60 f-stop: 13 chuck j o ne s Cleveland Clinic's Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health CAMERA: Pentax 67 LENS: 35 mm fisheye ISO: 100 shutter speed: 1/60 f-stop: 11

SECON D P lac e , AMATEUR / STU D ENT Alle n A lb ano "Excuse Me" CAMERA: Olympus OM-D EM-5 | 59

F IRST P lac e , AMATEUR / STU D ENT C hr is Pflu m "I took this photo not far from the so-called 'loneliest road in the world' (US 50), which runs between Ely and Reno. It had just stopped raining, and I wanted to photograph the dramatic sky. When I saw this abandoned ranch house, I noticed that the sky and the house converged to the same vanishing point." CAMERA: Nikon D2X LENS: Nikon DX, 17-55 mm ISO: 100 shutter speed: 1/90 f-stop: 13

Opposi te pag e, Top honor ab le menti on, semi - pr ofessi onal

Opposi te pag e, Bott om honor ab le menti on , semi - pr ofessi onal

Dave Har r i son "Echo Canyon is a bit north of Rachel, Nevada. When water collects and freezes, it presents a surprise in the otherwise dry landscape. This image was taken on a lonely and stormy morning."

Mar k Andr ew s "Gently lit by a pocket-size light, this sandstone shaft in Gold Butte provides a frame for countless astral points of light. With a weather front sliding across the sky from the northwest, Orion's Belt and the planet Venus make brilliant focal points in the southern sky."

CAMERA: Nikon D200 LENS: Nikon 18-200 mm ISO: 200 shutter speed: 1/5 f-stop: 22

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CAMERA: Canon 5D Mark II LENS: Canon 14mm ISO: 1250 shutter speed: 30 seconds f-stop: 2.8


honor ab le menti ons, semi - pr ofessi onal

Jer emy Helal "Late one afternoon, I was taking a hike near one of the many lesser-known paths near Red Rock. The sun started setting behind the mountains and illuminated the clouds into this beautiful color." CAMERA: Canon 7D LENS: Sigma 24 mm ISO: 100 shutter speed: 1/500 f-stop: 2.8 Wesley VanDi nter Planes landing at McCarran International Airport CAMERA: Sony A57 LENS: Sigma 10-20mm ISO: 200 shutter speed: 8 seconds f-stop: 6.3 James Tanksley A snowy day at Red Rock CAMERA: Canon 40D LENS: Canon 24-105mm ISO: 1000 shutter speed: 1/30 f-stop: 4.5

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SE COND Place, SEMI - PROF ESSIONAL Susan Li nk "I took this photograph of CityCenter just after sunset from Panorama Towers. I love the coloring the reflection of the Rio Hotel adds to this image." CAMERA: Canon 5D LENS: Canon EF 28-135mm ISO: 100 shutter speed: 5 seconds f-stop: 8

F IRST Place, SEMI - PROF ESSIONAL Sc ott War ner "This picture depicts inside the arch on the shoulder of Bridge Mountain in Red Rock Canyon near sunset." CAMERA: Nikon D800 LENS: Nikkor wide angle 16-35 mm ISO: 100 shutter speed: 1/50 f-stop: 11 | 63














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H o n o r a ble menti ons, s m a r t ph one/app M i g u e l V i lleg as 1 Bellagio Fountains (Nikon D90, Instagram) M i g u e l V i lleg as 2 “I took this picture of the Henry Moore sculpture in the Aria courtyard from the Crystals tram station.” (Nikon D90, Instagram) M i g u e l V i lleg as 3 “Taken at Death Valley National Park. I saw this young boy exploring out in the distance and centered him in my frame and took a picture.” (Nikon D90, Instagram)


g i n g e r br uner 4 “I have a long-standing series featuring a friend's backyard pool shot in different light at different times of year, a la Monet.” (iPhone 4) K i m Sh a h 5 “Shortly after moving to the Las Vegas area, we took a drive to Mount Charleston, and were completely taken aback by its beauty." (iPhone 4) S a r a h V er netti 6 “I can't leave Springs Preserve without taking a few photos of this unique sculpture outside the Origen Museum.” (iPhone 4, Instagram) t a r a r o masanta 7 “When the Sky Falls” (iPhone 4, Camera+)

Mar k Gar db er g 9 “My 6-year-old daughter Zoey saw this ride at a Halloween pumpkin patch in a Vegas suburb. I thought she’d be scared, but she was all smiles as she soared like Icarus!” (iPhone 5) Car los Montoya 10 “Backyard at dawn. This is a great way to wake up and have your coffee. What a view.” (iPhone) Sar ah Ver netti 11 “This beautiful purple flower bloomed in my own backyard.” (iPhone 4, Instagram) nor ah str eb el 12 Sculpture at the Red Rock National Conservation Area Visitors Center (iPhone 3, Instagram) aki i shi har a 13 Inside Hoover Dam (iPhone 5, Snapseed) juli anne Gr i sw old 14 “While visiting my best friend in Las Vegas, we completed the Gold Strike Hot Springs trail located a few miles out of the city. This photo depicts the Mike O'Callaghan–Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge as it traverses the Hoover Dam. (Also depicted is a pair of Mallard ducks who ended up swimming near my feet, hoping I would treat them to some of my peanut butter and jelly sandwich.)” (iPhone 4, Instagram)

C a r e y C hr i stensen 8 The Killers perform in November 2012 at a concert in Provo, Utah (iPhone 4S) 8

fi r st place, smar tphone/app Br yan O'Keefe 15 "I captured this on a nice mid-winter hike to the Hidden Forest cabin in the Sheep Mountains just north of Las Vegas." (iPhone 5)

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honor ab le men t ion s , pr ofessi onal Davi d Kondo A reflective moment CAMERA: Nikon Coolpix S80 Settings: Auto Antoni o Gomez Cowboys at a charreada (Mexican rodeo) in Las Vegas. CAMERA: Canon 1D Mark III LENS: 16-35 mm ISO: 100 shutter speed: 1/125 f-stop: 6.7

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ho no rab le m e nt i o n s , p ro f e s s i o n a l

Fernando Coyote The Thunderbirds at Nellis Air Force Base CAMERA: Sony A55 LENS: Sony 18-55mm ISO: 100 shutter speed: 1/1600 f-stop: 4.5 Alan Goya Canyoneering in Keyhole Canyon in the El Dorado Mountains CAMERA: Nikon D300 LENS: AF DX Fisheye-Nikkor 10.5 mm ISO: 200 shutter speed: 1/400 f-stop: 10

SE CON D P l a c e , P ro f e s s i o n a l

Lucky Wenzel City Hall at night CAMERA: Canon 5D LENS: 50mm ISO: 3200 shutter speed: 1/100 f-stop: 1.8 | 67

Firs t P lac e , P r o f e s s i o n a l gre g A nd e r s o n The "watering hole" in Ely CAMERA: Canon 1DS Mark III LENS: Canon 24-70 mm ISO: 320 shutter speed: 1/60 f-stop: 7.1

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PUBLISHER 'S CHOICE Davi d Rei sman "This long exposure of McCarran International Airport and the Las Vegas Strip was taken from the top level of the parking structure at the airport. The long traffic light trails have been transformed into beautiful ribbons of color by applying what is called the 'tri-color' effect in Photoshop. Before the days of digital editing, the same effect would be done by using red, blue and green filters while shooting."

CAMERA: Canon 7D LENS: Canon 15 mm fisheye ISO: 100 shutter speed: 30 seconds f-stop: 16 | 69



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a r t s + e n t e r ta i n m e n t


Associate conductor of “Jersey Boys” Philip Fortenberry takes center stage in his one-man show, “The Man at the Piano.” He’ll play the songs that serve as touchstones for his amazing life as a piano player, which has taken him from a church pianist in Mississippi to Strip stalwart to the crime-fighting cosmonaut supermodel we know and love today. (Sorry. Phil’s life inspires that kind of hyperbole). Philip Fortenberry performs 2:30p June 23 at Cabaret Jazz in the Smith Center. Tickets: $25-$35. Info:

Whether you’re a humble Instagram shutterbug or you’ve got a sentient QR4000PX 7R Skynet surveillance drone, the Camera 2 Camera Photo and Video Expo — filled to the frame with expert seminars and the hottest vendors — will teach you how to get the perfect shot. The Camera 2 Camera Photo and Video Expo is June 28-30 at the South Point hotel-casino. Registration $35-$197. Info:

Ah, the crushing existential dilemma we just all face: Do you pursue your rock ’n’ roll dreams or remain a numb suburban loserbot? Forget Jean Paul Sartre, “American Idiot” has the answer! This hit musical celebrates the power of thinking big and the redemptive magic of a three-chord punk song. “American Idiot” is June 11-16 at The Smith Center. $24-$129. Info:

If you’ve had more than one of Frankie’s Tiki Room’s famously potent rum drinks in a single sitting, then you, too, have woken up in a hotel jacuzzi wearing nothing but leopard-print underwear as a hat. And where did you get that sword? Exactly. Now you can make the magic happen at home with the release of “Liquid Vacation,” a tiki drink recipe book featuring all the Frankie’s faves. The “Liquid Vacation” release party is 8p June 22 at Frankie’s Tiki Room, 1712 W. Charleston Blvd. Info:

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By the time guitarist Michael Nigro is done with you, your ears will be sporting passport stamps from all the spicy hotspots — Venezuela, Brazil, Argentina, Cuba and more — as he takes you on a musical tour of Latin America. Michael Nigro performs 2p June 23 in Clark County Library’s main theater. Free. Info:

Want your event in our Calendar? Submit your event with a brief description to

ART SUSTAINABLE STYLE: FASHION AND PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBIT Through June 16.The Springs Preserve has gone couture! Organized by the Fashion for a Cause and the Springs Preserve, this fashion exhibit features designs constructed from recycled or reused materials, sustainable fabrics or locally-produced wares. See how fashion can make a positive impact in the community. Free for members or included with paid general admission. Big Springs Gallery at Springs Preserve TAMAR ETTUN Through June 17.During her residency, Ettun will create seven interactive sculptures using objects like brooms, crutches, scooters, engines and audio amplifiers. Visitors are invited to build and play their own musical sculptures. Free. P3Studio at The Cosmopolitan, POW WOW PHOTO EXHIBIT Through July 7.Pow Wow Portraits, a photo essay by photographer Lamar Marchese, comprises 24 large-format color digital prints from the 2012 Snow Mountain Pow Wow hosted by the Las Vegas Paiute Tribe. The exhibit coincides with the 25th annual Pow Wow to be held this year on the Paiute reservation. Free. Clark County Library, Rainbow Branch,

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THE PERFECT FUTURE IS SANITARY ... THE SANITARY FUTURE IS PURRRFECT! Through July 12.Jesse Smigel’s vision-as-caricature of the future proposes that all humans live on spacecraft and are addicted to antibacterial hand sanitizer. The installation of sculpture and paintings, including an iron lung for an animatronic house cat, narrates a dark comedy about the collision of the present-past with the future. Clark County Government Center Rotunda Gallery OUR LAS VEGAS: A CULTURAL ANIMATION PROJECT Through July 18, Mon-Thu, 7a-5:30p.A collaborative exhibition featuring representative work from artists with studios and galleries inside of Emergency Arts who will be participating in the “Our Las Vegas” spring exhibition at Emergency Arts. Las Vegas City Hall Chamber Gallery, 229-1012 WHITE ROSE EXHIBIT Through Aug. 22.Chronicling the student resistance group that peacefully opposed the Nazi regime during World War II. The exhibit includes 47 panels of photos, text and biographies depicting the actions of White Rose, the members of which were executed in 1943 when their activities were uncovered. UNLV Lied Library,

Water in our community is channeled into the storm drain and flows untreated to Lake Mead. As this water flows across the Valley, it picks up discarded trash and pollutants from cars, lawn fertilizers, pet waste, and many other activities. Help protect the water quality of Lake Mead… the Valley’s main source of drinking water. For more information visit keyword: water quality 702-668-8674 | 73

a r t s + e n t e r ta i n m e n t

EXPRESSIONS FROM WITHIN AND PEDAL TO THE METAL Through Aug. 31, Tue-Fri, 12-5p.These two exhibits by local painter Rey Isip allow the viewer to see how his automotive design art techniques naturally transitioned into a more personal broad-scoped expressive journey into painting. Free. Left of Center Art Gallery and Studio, 2207 W. Gowan Road,

ART IN MOTION: THE KINETIC WIND ART OF MARK WHITE Through Sep. 30.Mark White’s kinetic wind sculptures were designed to encourage selfreflection. They are precisely balanced to respond to the lightest of breezes, yet strong enough to withstand 100 mph winds. Free for members or included with paid general admission. Springs Preserve

June 6-July 27, Tue-Sat, 12-5p, opening reception 6-9p June 6. RTZvegas presents an exhibition of works by West Hollywood artist Garilyn Brune. The works comprise selections from several series including, “The Big Big Girls,” “Fetishes,” “Americana,” “House of Brune Fashion” and “X-Rated” (age restricted). RTZvegas in Art Square, 1017 S. First St. #195, 592-2164


FIRST FRIDAY June 7 & July 5, 5-11p.Downtown’s monthly arts and culture event continues to grow bigger and better, featuring art exhibits, open galleries, live music and DJs, food trucks, performances and more. Free. Arts District,

© Disney

You May Have Seen Mary Poppins, But Have You Seen It with a Spoonful of Tuacahn Magic? May 30 - Oct 25


U.S. Regional Premiere June 6 - Oct 24

A Tuacahn Premiere December 2013

TONY Award Winner for Best Musical on Broadway! July 4 - Oct 22

Tuacahn Amphitheatre is surrounded by the red cliffs of Southern Utah, just two short hours from Las Vegas.

(866) 321-4953

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Companion | June 2013

A Tuacahn Premiere June 27 – Aug 10

the Greatest Show on Earth: A Group Show June 7-22; opening reception 6p June 7. The Greatest Show on Earth is inspired by the circus, carnivals, and freak shows that paraded through American towns from the early 1900s through the Great Depression and Dust Bowl era. Participating artists interpret in all its camp and glory. The studio itself will be transformed into a circus ring, and on opening night, the art on display will be complemented by circus performers from jugglers to fire-breathers to acrobats to musicians. 1551 S. Commerce St. #A, THE 5th ANNUAL OVER THE RAINBOW ART COMPETITION June 12, 12-4p & June 13, 10a-6:30p.In celebration of GLBT Month and the many contributions and achievements of the GLBT community, this juried art competition exhibit encourages teen and adult artists to participate in showcasing creativity in the visual arts. Free. Sahara West Library, OVER THE RAINBOW ART RECEPTION June 18, 5p.Meet the winners of the competition and watch them receive cash prizes and ribbons for categories such as Best of Show for Adult, Best of Show for Teen and overall first, second and third place awards. Free. Sahara West Library, SU LIMBERT/SIERRA SLENTZ June 19-July 14.An interactive installation created to captivate imaginations and draw participants into a magical world where understandings of home and safety are explored. P3Studio will be altered into a largescale forest diorama featuring a five-foot bear covered in a mosaic of ceramics. Guests will create tiny homes in the workshop area to help shape the village nestled within the forest. Free. P3Studio at The Cosmopolitan,

NEXT EXIT: ROUTE 66 June 28-Sep. 15.Explore how local artists have interpreted this icon of the American Auto Age using a variety of media and techniques. Featuring artists Su Limbert, Todd Miller, Andreana Donahue, Justin Favela and JW Caldwell. Free with general admission. Springs Preserve,


DANCE DON QUIXOTE June 1, 7p.The Academy of Nevada Ballet Theatre pre-Professional Program students present Miguel de Cervantes’ romantic and witty story in dance. Placed in the colorful streets of Spain, the cast of characters come alive, along with the bravado and excitement of some of classical ballet’s most demanding and dynamic dances. $21; children 3-12, $18; children under 3 not permitted. Artemus W. Ham Concert Hall,

MUSIC THE TENORS June 2, 7:30p.The Emmy-winning Canadian quartet will perform music from their latest album, “Lead With Your Heart.” Tickets start at $26. Reynolds Hall at The Smith Center, JEWEL: GREATEST HITS TOUR June 6, 7:30p.Acclaimed American singer, songwriter, actress, poet, painter and philanthropist Jewel will perform her greatest hits in this intimate concert. Tickets start at $29. Reynolds Hall at The Smith Center,

Cedar City

2013 Season

June 24 — October 19

King John • Love’s Labour’s Lost The Tempest • Anything Goes Peter and the Starcatcher Twelve Angry Men • Richard II The Marvelous Wonderettes

ALL I REALLY NEED TO KNOW I LEARNED FROM BROADWAY June 9, 2p.The Las Vegas Men’s Chorus, under the direction of Bruce Ewing of The Phat Pack, will present its free spring concert that is said to appeal to Broadway experts and novices alike. The concert will include selections from “West Side Story” and “Guys & Dolls,” among others. Free, donations accepted. Community Lutheran Church, 3720 E. Tropicana Ave., facebook. com/lvmenschorus GREEN DAY’S “AMERICAN IDIOT” June 11-14, 7:30p; June 15-16, 2 & 7:30p.Based on Green Day’s groundbreaking rock opera of the same name, this daring new musical tells the story of three lifelong friends forced to choose between their dreams and the safety of suburbia and features the smash hits “Boulevard of Broken Dreams,” “Holiday” and “21 Guns.” Tickets start at $24. Reynolds Hall at The Smith Center,


Closer than you think! | 75

a r t s + e n t e r ta i n m e n t

THE PIANO GUYS June 13, 8p.The Piano Guys became an Internet sensation by way of their immensely successful series of strikingly original self-made music videos, including their most recent hit video, an innovative 10-handed version of One Direction’s “What Makes You Beautiful.” But it’s the Guys’ highly original blend of classical music with pop that has really been the cause of an Internet phenomenon. $30-$80. Artemus W. Ham Concert Hall,

STREETOLOGY CONCERT IN THE PARK June 15, 7:30p.Enjoy an evening of contemporary jazz by Streetology, an exciting blend of funk, rock and jazz with meticulous musical execution and staging. Each member of the group has enjoyed success in recording and concert performance venues, backing up some of the finest stars in the pop, rock and jazz worlds. Free. Showmobile at Bruce Trent Park, 8851 Vegas Drive

Never stop learning.

ecame an expert in nIb su he m m dt er an

I took a class ause in p c e b ho st to e w gr h t a u o


arned conversa tion n I le e h t al d Sp an an y i ph

I took a six-da y t o ur hen of dt t an he es S in w

Affordable classes. Flexible times. Subjects by request. > Browse personal and professional classes and sign up at

MICHAEL NIGRO IN CONCERT: AN AFTERNOON OF CLASSICAL GUITAR June 23, 2p.Classical guitarist Michael Nigro provides a first-rate concert experience brimming with Latin-influenced musicality and engaging commentary. Nigro’s current program, A Journey through Latin America, features compositions from Antonio Lauro, Heitor Villa-Lobos, Jose Luis Merlin, Jorge Cardoso and Leo Brouwer. Free. Clark County Library Main Theater, THE MAN AT THE PIANO June 23, 2:30p.Cabaret Jazz is proud to present Philip Fortenberry in an intimate concert including his personal stories and versatile music styling. Regaled as both a concert pianist and Christian recording artist, Philip is sure to entertain and enlighten. $25-$35. Cabaret Jazz at The Smith Center, DJANGOVEGAS! GYPSY JAZZ CONCERT June 22, 5p.Celebrate the music of Django Reinhardt and other gypsy jazz musicians past and present with the John Jorgenson Quintet, Stephane Wrembel and his band, and Hot Club of Las Vegas. $10 advance tickets, $15 at the door. Downtown Historic Fifth Street School,

THEATER CATCH ME IF YOU CAN June 18-21, 7:30 p. June 22-23, 2p & 7:30 p. Based on the hit DreamWorks film, ”Catch Me If You Can” is the high-flying, splashy Broadway musical adventure based on an astonishing real-life story of being young, in love and in trouble. Tickets start at $24. Reynolds Hall in The Smith Center, POETS CORNER June 21, 7:30p.Featuring the best local poetry talent and an open-mic forum for both new and established poets. West Las Vegas Arts Center Community Gallery, 947 W. Lake Mead Blvd., 229-4800

LECTURES, SPEAKERS AND PANELS AN EVENING WITH VICTORIA KILBURY & NABILA: A WOMAN’S JOURNEY FOR INDEPENDENCE June 11, 7p.Learn more about Saudi culture and its impact on women when author Victoria Kilbury and the subject of her book, Nabila, share the true story of Nabila’s life in a culture where females could not attend school, pursue careers unless sanctioned by the government, drive cars or choose their husbands. Free. Jewel Box Theater, Clark County Library, THE SMITH CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING

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Companion | June 2013

ARTS WALKING TOURS 10:30a, Wed & Sat.Take a guided tour of the campus and learn about its architectural accomplishments, artwork and historic overview. Register in advance for free. The Smith Center,

He wasn’t expected to


survive. But it’s our job

OCEAN ADVENTURES June 1-30, Sat 11a & 1p, Sun 1p.Each weekend, discover a new aspect of the ocean and its inhabitants, from camouflage techniques to the animal/vegetable/mineral wonder of coral and how to maintain a healthy reef. Free with general admission. Las Vegas Natural History Museum, CHILDREN’S ARTS FESTIVAL June 1, 10a-3p.Children and parents will enjoy award-winning musicians Aaron Nigel Smith; Justin Roberts and the Not Ready for Naptime Players; and Alex and The Kaleidoscope Band. Other activities and entertainment will include jump houses, face painting, balloon artists, circus clowns, petting zoos, chalk on the walk, a recycling workshop and a marketplace. Free. Centennial Hills Park and Amphitheatre, 7101 N. Buffalo Drive, BLUES & BREWS FESTIVAL June 1, 4p.Red-hot blues and ice-cold brews are on tap for the fourth annual Blues & Brews Festival. Enjoy beers from numerous local, domestic and international brewers and live music from Dennis Jones, Twice as Good, Scott Rhiner & The Moanin’ Black Snakes and The Diane Kallay Band. $35$75. Springs Preserve, RAINFOREST ADVENTURE June 2-Sep.8. Embark on a multi-sensory expedition of the world’s tropical rainforests including a wide variety of hands-on exhibits, climbing a 9-foot kapok tree, exploring a gorilla’s nest, visiting a village and even weaving on a loom. Learn about the challenges facing these ecological wonders and how to preserve and protect thier precious natural habitats. Free for members or included with general admission. Springs Preserve, HARLEM GLOBETROTTERS SUMMER SKILLS CLINICS (CENTER AGASSI) June 10-12, 9a, 12:30p, 3:30p.Boys and girls ages 6-12 are invited to learn how to play like the world-famous Globetrotters in these fun and entertaining clinics. $59 per session. 24 Hour Fitness Center Agassi Super Sport, 2090 Village Center Circle,

to defy expectations.

It was a whirlwind trip to another town in southern Utah to pick up a brand-new truck. The backand-forth was so fast, and Luke was so determined to get it done, that he fell asleep behind the wheel. The sound of his tires whizzing over the lane bumps w o k e h i m . H e j o l t e d , o v e rcorrected, and his new truck careened off the side of the road. When the truck stopped rolling, it was destroyed—and so was Luke. He was flown to UMC’s Trauma Center, where he was m et by Tra u m a S u rg e o n D r. Michael Casey. Dr. Casey and the team were immediately in action, assessing and prioritizing Luke’s injuries. Nearly every part of Luke was broken, including his neck. This left him a quadriplegic, unable to move a single limb; he couldn’t even move a finger or a toe. Dr. Casey had to tell Luke’s anxious family that the chances of his survival were small.

But the team worked, stabilizing and setting and striving to make Luke stronger. Days later, Luke was stronger in a dramatic way. He moved his fingers. Then his toes. Dr. Casey was able to take a shattered young man and send him, full of hope, to rehab. Today, Luke no longer needs a w h e e l c h a i r. A n d w h e n h e reunited with Dr. C asey at a Survivor’s Celebration, he was able to take a few hard-won and joyful steps! Only a Level I Trauma Center could have accomplished that. And UMC has the only Level I Trauma Center in the state. Every single day we return life, not just to the patient, but to all who love him. When we’re entrusted with people, even when the odds are against them, we do our utmost to hand them a second chance.

Nevada’s Only Level I Trauma Center • Nevada’s Only Designated Pediatric Trauma Center Nevada’s Only Transplant Center • Nevada’s Only Burn Care Center Nevada’s Most Highly Awarded Cardiology Care Home to Children’s Hospital of Nevada at UMC, The Only Children’s Hospital of Its Kind in the State Rated Top Five Pediatric Intensive Care Units in the Nation by Consumer Reports


a r t s + e n t e r ta i n m e n t

CLINICS (ANN RD) June 13-15, 9a, 12:30p, 3:30p.A fun and entertaining way for boys and girls ages 6-12 to learn how to play like the world-famous Globetrotters. $59 per session. 24 Hour Fitness Ann Road Super Sport, 5651 Centennial Center Blvd., FRATELLO MARIONETTES PERFORM ALADDIN June 20, 11a.From the most popular legend of

the 1001 Arabian Nights, watch as Aladdin thwarts the evil sorcerer, discovers the magical lamp, befriends the powerful genie and saves the princess. Free. Clark County Library Main Theater, SUNDOWN IN DOWNTOWN: A GROWNUPS CALYPSO PARTY OF CULTURE, COCKTAILS & CUISINE June 21, 6p.A fun night featuring live local bands Wild Card and the Joey Vitale Trio

followed by DJ Ultra. Magicians, fortune tellers and artists provide a festive atmosphere along with food from local eateries. The Calypso theme includes steel drums, costumes and decorations. $55-$100 per couple. Las Vegas Natural History Museum 900 N. Las Vegas Blvd., HERITAGE CLASSIC: A HICKORY STICK GOLF TOURNAMENT June 22, 6:30a.Compete in a 1920’s prohibition-era tournament; 1920’s period dress is enthusiastically encouraged. Registration includes hickory stick golf clubs, two sleeves of souvenir “Victor” square mesh golf balls, boxed lunch, coupon for a free round of golf at Eagle Crest and entry into a raffle for a free driver. $45 per player, teams of two required. Eagle Crest golf course, 4TH WITH THE PHIL July 4, 4p.Beginning with a family fun day in Symphony Park including live entertainment and food booths, this Independence Day event will lead to a concert with the Las Vegas Philharmonic and culminate with a fireworks display. Bring a blanket for the outdoor stage! After-hours admission to the Discovery Children’s Museum offered for free. Tickets on sale now starting at $10 for adults, $5 for children. The Smith Center,

RIDER REWARDS Be a tourist in your town! Present your RTC transit pass to receive discounts and special offers. Visit for a list of participating vendors.

RTC VIVA BIKE VEGAS 2013 GRAN FONDO PINARELLO Sep. 21. Registration is open for the sixth annual RTC Viva Bike Vegas, the non-competitive ride that takes you through the Strip and Red Rock Canyon. Choose between 103, 60 or 17-mile courses. After the ride, meet at Town Square for a celebration that includes live entertainment and a children’s bicycle rodeo. Proceeds benefit local charities. $85 early registration, $65 jerseys. Town Square Las Vegas,

FUNDRAISERS 2013 SBA SMALL BUSINESS AWARDS June 6, 12-2p.Partnering with the US SBA, Vegas PBS hosts this annual awards banquet honoring local businesses in several categories. $45 individual, $400 per table of 10. Gold Coast Hotel & Casino, workforce@ GOOD GUYS GALA & MOBSTER BALL June 8, 6p.Live music, special guests, food, spirits and a silent auction makes for a fun night. Benefits The Mob Museum and the Injured Police Officers Fund. Hosted by Oscar and Carolyn Goodman and honoring Ralph Lamb.

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end note

A hole different outlook

Want to snap it old school? Build the same pinhole camera we did By Christopher Smith | Photography By brent holmes



You’ll need 1 soda can 1 #10 sewing needle 1 piece fine-grit sandpaper 1 8-inch x 36-inch x 1-inch piece of wood

(any kind of wood will work, from pine to zebra wood) 1 4-inch x 5-inch film holder 2 hinges 2 1/4-inch T-nuts 2 1-inch precut wooden dowels

m wood glue 20 brads mitre or table saw power drill duct tape



1. Making the pinhole. Cut a 2-inch x

2-inch piece of aluminum out of the soda can. With the #10 sewing needle, puncture a hole in the center of the aluminum. Run sandpaper over the alu5 minum to remove any lip from the puncture, then run the needle through the hole again to clear it. Our pinhole measured about 46 mm. 2. Getting the camera dimensions. Okay, cheat time! Rather than dust off our algebra books, we went to and used the “camera design wizard” to figure out our measurements. Just enter your pinhole diameter, film size and you’ll get the dimensions you need. Depending on your film size, you can make a pinhole out of anything from a mint tin to a shoebox. We used large-format 4 x 5 film, so we made a pretty big box out of oak. 3. Cutting the pieces. With a table saw or a mitre saw, cut each piece to your dimensions, with the grain running along the longest dimension of the piece. Next, you’ll use a router to make some “nesting cuts.” Using a .75-inch router bit, set its depth to .25 inch. Lay the side pieces flat, and router the top, bottom and back of each side. The bottom piece measures out 4.875 inches from the front; router out across the width to make a space for the film holder to sit. Router all four sides of the front of the camera so it fits snugly over all of the other pieces in the front. 4. Drilling the holes. You will need a .25-inch drill bit and 1-inch spade bit for this step. Measure the front piece to determine the center of the camera hole. Using the 1-inch spade bit, drill a hole all the way through.

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6 Next are the holes for your tripod holders. With the .25-inch bit, drill a hole through one bottom piece and one side piece (so you can turn the camera for horizontal shots). With the 1-inch spade bit, drill into the existing holes down approximately 1/2 inch. Using a piece of scrap wood as a damper, hammer in the T-nuts until they’re flush. Glue the edges of the dowels and place them over the T-nuts. This will prevent any light leaking in from the tripod mounts. 5. Painting. Use a flat black spray paint to paint the areas that will be on the inside of the camera. This will help keep it light-tight. Let the paint dry. 6. Assembly. Apply wood glue to the bottom-routered edge of each side piece. Attach to the bottom piece and nail in the brads. Apply glue to the front and side edges and slide into place, following up with brads. For the back door, align your hinges and screw them into the back of the bottom and the back of the back piece. Next, line up and attach the clasps to keep the film holder tight against the camera. Finally, duct-tape the piece of aluminum to the inside of the front panel, centering the pinhole over the drilled hole. You’re ready to shoot. Need inspiration? See our pinhole camera photos on p. 52.

Stay out of direct sunlight. Drink plenty of water. And sign up for the Equal Payment program. They’re all smart ways to stay cool during the summer. But Equal Payment has the added bonus of balancing your energy costs based on your previous 12-month usage. And that includes airconditioning costs. Log in to MyAccount to sign up.


Desert Companion - June 2013  

Your guide to living in southern Nevada - the photo issue

Desert Companion - June 2013  

Your guide to living in southern Nevada - the photo issue