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10 things to do this week

Updated September 16, 2021 - 3:04 pm

The biggest names in music are in Las Vegas this week, but there are still plenty of other oddities and curiosities to keep you busy.

MUSIC

1. iHeart Radio Music Fest

Featuring more big names than a large-type edition of the Yellow Pages, the iHeart Radio Music Fest returns with sounds spanning classic rock (Journey, Cheap Trick), alt-rock (Coldplay, Weezer), hip-hop (J. Cole, Lil Baby), country (Sam Hunt, Darius Rucker), pop (Billie Eilish, Dua Lipa) and more. Honestly, that’s more music than you deserve. The deluge begins at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday at T-Mobile Arena, 3780 Las Vegas Blvd. South. Tickets start at $86.75; axs.com.

— Jason Bracelin

COMEDY

2. April Macie

April Macie
April Macie

When “The King of All Media” vouches for you, who are the rest of us media plebes to argue? So it goes for comedian April Macie, who won Howard Stern’s esteemed “Hottest and Funniest Chick” competition a decade ago. The well-traveled comic now visits Vegas as part of the new monthly “Bonkerz Comedy Presents” series at 9 p.m. Friday at Rocks Lounge at Red Rock Resort, 11011 W. Charleston Blvd. Tickets are $25; redrockresort.com.

— Jason Bracelin

FESTIVAL

3. Hispanic Heritage Month Festival

Jazmin Villezcas, left, with Ballet Folklorico Alborada at Sunrise Mountain High School, dances ...
Jazmin Villezcas, left, with Ballet Folklorico Alborada at Sunrise Mountain High School, dances during a Cinco de Mayo festival at Shadow Rock Park on Friday, May 3, 2019, in Las Vegas. (Benjamin Hager/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @BenjaminHphoto

Celebrate the diverse charms of Hispanic culture at the Hispanic Heritage Month Festival, scheduled for 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday at Gary Reese Freedom Park, 850 N. Mojave Road. The festival will include music and performances, children’s activities and food trucks, as well as health services that include screenings and COVID-19 vaccinations. Free. For more information, call 702-596-9912.

— John Przybys

CHILLS

4. Escape Blair Witch

Escape Blair Witch
Escape Blair Witch

Some situations you might find yourself trapped in — dinner with the politically frustrating wing of your family; a James Corden flash mob — could seem scary. But now you have something really frightening to measure them against: an immersive escape room themed after the “Blair Witch” film franchise. Players work their way through a ranger station, a forest, and the witch’s old house as the suspense ratchets up, and — well, let us know how it ends, if you survive. 2121 Industrial Road; tickets start at $45.99, reservations required; escapeblairwitch.com

— Scott Dickensheets

MUSIC

5. John Legend

Performer John Legend plays the piano during a Get Out the Vote rally on Monday, Nov. 2, 2020, ...
Performer John Legend plays the piano during a Get Out the Vote rally on Monday, Nov. 2, 2020, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)

When you anoint yourself with a surname like “Legend,” you’re going for broke, aren’t you? While a lesser R&B-soul-pop multihyphenate might have hedged his bets a bit — John Totally-More-Than-Passable has a nice ring to it, no? — not this dude. Instead, John Legend, born John Stephens, has lived up to his self-billing by becoming the first African American man to win all four major American entertainment awards: Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony. See him at 8 p.m. Saturday at The Chelsea at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, 3708 Las Vegas Blvd. South. Tickets start at $59; cosmopolitanlasvegas.com.

— Jason Bracelin

WEIRD

6. Oddities & Curiosities Exp0

Taxidermy? Check. Handcrafted oddities? Check. Skulls and bones? You’d better believe it. “Preserved specimens”? We sure hope so! These are just a few of the fun-gothic touchpoints of the Las Vegas Oddities & Curiosities Expo. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday in the Expo at World Market Center, 435 S. Grand Central Parkway; $10 advance, $15 at the door; odditiesandcuriositiesexpo.com.

— Scott Dickensheets

NOSTALGIA

7. Don McLean

"American Pie" singer/songwriter Don McLean addresses the crowd during a ceremony to ...
"American Pie" singer/songwriter Don McLean addresses the crowd during a ceremony to award him a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Monday, Aug. 16, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)

Sure, “American Pie,” is a great song. But what’s it have to do with Las Vegas? Technically, not much, aside from the long-standing assumption that “the king” for whom the jester sang in that coat he borrowed from James Dean is Elvis Presley, the city’s unofficial mascot. Nonetheless, when Don McLean takes the stage at 8 p.m. Friday at Green Valley Ranch Resort, he’ll be doing so as a member of the Las Vegas Walk of Stars. (The day of his induction, Nov. 14, 2019, was declared Don McLean Day, after all.) Tickets start at $35, plus fees, at ticketmaster.com.

— Christopher Lawrence

FESTIVAL

8. Halfway to St. Patrick’s Day

If you’ve noticed Christmas merchandise in stores, it won’t surprise you that we’re halfway to St. Patrick’s Day. The City of Henderson will celebrate that fact this weekend, with festivities at the Water Street Plaza from 5 to 9 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday. Stop by for Celtic music and other live entertainment, a “Little Lads and Lassies Zone” and food and drink; a Wine & Whiskey Walk is planned for 5-9 p.m. Saturday. Festival admission is free; for Wine & Whiskey Walk tickets, $25, go to eventbrite.com.

— Heidi Knapp Rinella

MUSIC

9. The Composers Showcase

Even though its longtime home at The Smith Center was closed by the pandemic, the Composers Showcase of Las Vegas didn’t stop because the need didn’t stop. The nonprofit established the TCS Entertainment Community Relief Fund to provide financial assistance to out-of-work entertainers. The Composers Showcase returns to Myron’s at The Smith Center, at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, with a lineup of original music fronted by TCS co-founders Keith Thompson and Michael Brennan, singer Clint Holmes and “Ka” music director Richard Oberacker, among many others. Tickets are $25-$40 plus fees at thesmithcenter.com.

— Christopher Lawrence

BOOK SIGNING

10. Tyler Merritt

Las Vegas Academy graduate Tyler Merritt. (Steve Bussell)
Las Vegas Academy graduate Tyler Merritt. (Steve Bussell)

Las Vegas Academy alum Tyler Merritt, whose 2018 video “Before You Call the Cops” twice went viral, returns Saturday for a reading and book signing of his funny, thoughtful and candid autobiography, “I Take My Coffee Black: Reflections on Tupac, Musical Theater, Faith, and Being Black in America” The free event begins at 7 p.m. at the Writer’s Block, 519 S. Sixth St.

— John Przybys

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