Las Vegas – Correspondence – August 2015

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Las Vegas

Since pizza is one of the five main food groups, I only eat the very best. Not a problem in Las Vegas as Tony Gemignani, who owns and operates Pizza Rock, is the 11-time World Pizza Champion. He is the only Triple Crown winner at the International Pizza Championships in Lecce, Italy and won the title of World Champion Pizza Maker in 2007 at the World Pizza Cup in Naples, Italy … becoming the first American and non-Neapolitan victor ever.

There are 11 styles of Tony’s award-winning gourmet pizzas with the most famous being his World Pizza Cup winner: the Napoletana-style Margherita made with San Marzano tomatoes, mozzarella, fior di latte, basil, extra virgin olive oil and sea salt. Other pizza styles include New York/New Haven, Chicago Cracker Thin, Classic American, Regional Italian, Roman, Sicilian, Detroit, and Gluten Free, all cooked in one of the restaurant’s four different ovens. Pizza Rock is at 201 N. 3rd St. (between E. Ogden Ave. and Stewart Ave. 702-385-0838. Opens daily at 11 a.m.

Picasso-gift-shop-267x400Like me, I believe most NevadaGram readers prefer something a little different. Try this while visiting Las Vegas during August: go golfing and test your mettle when teeing off at 11 a.m. when the temperature is 101 on its way to 112. However, there are benefits: getting tee times is not a problem and expensive green fees are reduced by half or more. Drink plenty of water on the course and save the cocktails for the 19th hole. Also, wear a hat, sunglasses, and lightweight, loose-fitting cotton shirts.

There’s more to Las Vegas than Neapolitan pizza and temperatures that reach 112. Pablo Picasso is on display at the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art. Some 43 pieces, titled “Picasso: Creatures and Creativity,” are on view together for the first time in the United States. The display focuses on Picasso’s favorite theme – the human figure (my favorite human figure is the female). It’s a unique exhibit that reads into the mind of Picasso. On the way out, stop in the gift shop and buy the 200-piece Picasso puzzle titled Two Girls Reading for $22. It’s a nice memory of your visit and probably the only thing you can afford. The gallery opens daily at 10 a.m. 702-693-7871.

Diamond Jack Bulavsky

 

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If you happen to be in Las Vegas the first Friday of any month try visiting First Friday Art Walk in the downtown arts district between Charleston

Boulevard and Imperial Avenue. First Friday is free, kid friendly, gives you lots of exercise, and runs the first Friday of every month between 5 and 11 p.m. Police and security are present on all streets. Wear comfortable shoes to enjoy the galleries, arts and crafts, artist performances, live bands, and Kid Zone. Most visitors miss this, but most of the food trucks are located on 3rd street between Colorado and Imperial Avenues, and on Colorado and Casino Center Drive. This is where you should begin your journey, before the crowds hit and to start your hydration for the heat at this time of year. Speaking of heat, if you need medical attention the First Aid center is at Colorado and Casino Center Drive.

Parking is always a big issue. A lot of the streets are closed for activities, and parking fills up fast or costs $10 or more in lots. You can park at the El Cortez Hotel downtown, where you can catch the free shuttle right across the street from the valet stand. Symphony Park charges $3 for parking on Grand Central Pkwy and Clark Avenue, and the shuttle bus is free. Shuttles normally run every 20 minutes from 4:30 until 11:30 p.m. Make sure you double check with the shuttle bus driver for the last shuttle run time so you don’t get stuck walking a mile from where you parked your vehicle.

Paula Cimoch

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