A Different Kind of Summer Camp

Downtown is not yet the vibrant hub toward which its boosters have worked for years, but the Arts Factory is injecting crucial life into the neighborhood. Following the closing of Paymon’s Mediterranean restaurant at the wedge corner of East Charleston Boulevard and South Casino Center Boulevard in March, Arts Factory owner Wes Myles teamed with restaurateur Franco Spinelli to open Bar+ Bistro in April.

Now the restaurant’s spacious outdoor patio is hosting a movie night—er, an “urban social experience”—on Fridays called Camp 107. The eight-film lineup, projected on the side-wall of the Arts Factory, is a mix of cult films (Blazing Saddles, Auntie Mame) and classics (Gentleman Prefer Blondes, To Have and Have Not). Camp 107 runs through the end of July; after that, it’s likely the movie nights will continue until the weather turns.

The debut film, Barbarella, drew a few dozen people and had the relaxed, nostalgic vibe of a drive-in flick. Myles hopes that Camp 107 won’t be a place where film nerds just watch the movie, but an event where Vegas creatives can get to know each other. The large patio has a bocce ball court, the restaurant will be serving different specialty drinks for each movie and the seats—including a few dozen rescued from the city’s first Jewish temple—are more than comfortable.

Last Saturday, the Arts Factory folks launched yet another event in the same space. Painters on the Patio features live music as well as six local painters at work on their canvasses. “The idea is to build the energy and give people a reason to come down here,” Myles says. “Anytime you get people doing something it’s a social event.”