Wonderland Aims for Dec. 20, and Other Holiday Delights

Illustration by Christopher A. Jones

Illustration by Christopher A. Jones

Our second-greatest storyline about the holiday season (after it being a time to reflect on the relative importance of family and the overwhelming importance of pie) is that it’s something of a transformative affair.

You’re bombarded with that message every year, most pointedly in It’s a Wonderful Life, where George Bailey goes from sad-sack would-be jumper to optimistic pillar of the community. Ebenezer Scrooge takes a ride on the Christmas Casper Express, and all of a sudden he’s shilling out prize-goose money. Tim Allen actually becomes Santa Claus—it’s all there in all the seasonal classics.

Except for in Home Alone 2, where Kevin’s dumb parents can’t be bothered to take a head count in the airplane two years after letting their son spend Christmas watching gangster movies and humiliating Daniel Stern. Dammit, John Heard, you have five kids. How hard is that to keep track of? It’s like you want Joe Pesci to steal your child.

That spirit of holiday transformation isn’t limited to heartwarming moments, it seems. Take the somewhat elusive Wonderland project. Though the initial proposal called for the pop-up village on the south Strip to open on November 25 and the date was later moved to December 14, co-founder Mara Spector says delays have now pushed the opening to December 20.

At some point in the project’s life, Spector says she’s lining up what she describes as A-list entertainment to complement the village. Promotional material for the project described a stunt motorcycle jump over a 747. …

Some time after New Year’s Eve, Galleria Bar at Caesars Palace is rumored to be shutting down for four months to undergo renovations, with Cleopatra’s Barge and Shadow Bar to follow. …

The Tropicana is going to be jumping on the retail center craze sweeping the Strip, building the Shops at the New Tropicana, with 275,000 square feet of mall to wrap around the Tropicana/Las Vegas Boulevard corner. Two restaurants and a food court would join 160,000 square feet of retail when the addition is completed in 2015. …

It seems we’re going from post-Vegoose music festival wasteland all the way to big-time festival destination thanks to the proven track record of events such as Electric Daisy Carnival and the iHeartRadio festival. On the heels of Life Is Beautiful comes news that SFX is partnering with Rock in Rio to bring a version of the South American and European fest here in May 2015 for four days on the Strip, potentially stretching to six by 2017.

Jenny, Paris, Chrissy. ’Nuff Sed.

Jenny McCarthy’s all-girl Vinyl comedy show Dirty, Sexy, Funny brought Rachel Feinstein, Tiffany Haddish, Tammy Pescatelli and Lynne Koplitz to the stage November 29 and 30, despite the fact that by putting “Dirty” and “Jenny McCarthy” together like that everyone was going to spend the entire show flashing back to every fantasy they had during the ’90s. After the second night, McCarthy and boyfriend Donnie Wahlberg cruised into Body English for the after-party. … Paris Hilton told TMZ on November 26 that she didn’t make any money off her sex tape, and let Rick Salomon keep all the dough. Which is true, if you don’t count all the money she made off being famous because of the sex tape, like every club appearance fee she ever collected. … When John Legend made his stop at the Pearl on November 30, wife Chrissy Teigen was spotted dancing at the soundboard. Which is the best argument against splurging on front-row tickets that we’ve ever heard.

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