Fun & Gaming
Best place for laughs
Catch a Rising Star
Silver Legacy Casino Resort
407 N. Virginia St., 329-4777
This cute little comedy club, tucked away on the Sierra Street side of the Silver Legacy’s casino floor, provides big belly laughs on a consistent basis. It follows the typical comedy club formula. Gary Raffanelli (of local Gary & Sandy fame) warms up the crowd with a mix of organ-playing and improv comedy. He is then followed by a featured performer and, finally, the headliner. Some big names have visited the club (Richard Lewis was the latest one, although tickets to his show cost a bit more), but not-so-big names with just-as-big laughs show up all the time. It’s worth the $12.95-$14.95 to check it out.
Best casino cultural contribution
Art at the Siena Hotel Spa Casino
1 S. Lake St., 337-6260
The recent history of art in Nevada casinos is checkered, thanks to the Steve Wynn tax break debacle down south. But there is no debating the coolness of the art at the Siena. Works by renowned artists including Manuel Neri, Joan Arrizabalaga, Robert Brady, Marc Katano and Wade Hoffer dot the property, but the highlight is the three-dimensional work by Robert Hughes. As the viewer moves, it appears that the paintings move—doors open or close, allowing a view of a mountainous landscape, for example. Hughes’ show was scheduled to close Sept. 15, but it has been extended through the end of November. This beats “Dogs Playing Poker” any day.
Best casino advertising effort
219 N. Sierra St., 788-2900
The billboard on Center Street for Gordie Brown’s show makes it sound like he’s the second coming of Christ. He’s funny, hilarious, HYSTERICAL, sensational, unforgettable, the billboard raves. Goodness. Can he heal the sick? Turn water into wine? In any case, this eye-catching, over-the-top board has gotten the attention of many. By almost all accounts, the talented Mr. Brown puts on one heck of a show. It’s a darn good thing, considering the hype he has to live up to.
Best casino dining deal
Gold Dust West Fourth and Vine streets, 323-2211
The food at the Wildwood Restaurant is not too shabby, and the prices are reasonable. But after 3 p.m. on Wednesdays and Sundays, the prices get downright silly—in favor of the customer. That’s because the folks at the Gold Dust West cut the prices in half. This means four people can get tasty, enormous dinners, and even drinks, without shelling out any more than a $20 bill. Wow! Plus, the service is good, and the atmosphere is quaint, if a bit smoky. Good stuff!