Updated July 10, 2020 - 2:18 pm
Anthony Christopher couldn’t believe his eyes.
“When I went to the Strip the day after it closed, it was emotional,” he says. “It was a ghost town. Really crazy.”
That’s when Christopher, founder of the streaming channel Give Me Las Vegas, knew he needed to make a documentary chronicling the effect of COVID-19 on the city. The result, “When the Lights Went Out,” debuts at 7 p.m. Wednesday on KSNV-TV, Channel 3, as a charity fundraiser.
Residents who have overcome the coronavirus are spotlighted, as are front-line workers and everyday heroes who stepped up to help where they could.
“I didn’t want it heavy-loaded with entertainers or politicos,” Christopher says.
That doesn’t mean they aren’t included. Clark County Commissioner Marilyn Kirkpatrick and Henderson Mayor Debra March are interviewed, along with Sammy Hagar, Frank Marino and “Fantasy” singer Lorena Peril.
“I’m still shocked about it. It’s really hard to believe,” Hagar, owner of the Cabo Wabo Cantina on the Strip and Sammy’s Beach Bar & Grill at McCarran International Airport, says in the special about the city’s tourist districts essentially shutting down. “I didn’t think Las Vegas would ever close. It’s, like, when Las Vegas and Disneyland close, something’s wrong.”
Christopher says when he saw the devastation COVID-19 was inflicting on Las Vegans, he wanted to find a way to use the documentary to help them. As a result, he says, The Salvation Army and Speedway Children’s Charities will split the money generated by a GoFundMe campaign.
Information on how to donate will appear on-screen during “When the Lights Went Out.”
You can support the drive at bit.ly/2ZTUtzV.