The Jeff Does Vegas Podcast

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EP#57: Darkest Before The Dawn

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A lot has changed in Las Vegas since I released my last regular episode; Hell, a lot has changed in the 3 weeks since I released the last SPECIAL episode.

As such, I thought it might be a good time to jump back on with a brand new episode to provide some news on what's happening in the city & share some of my predictions of what a re-opening of Las Vegas might look like.  I also wanted to check in with everyone & let you know what's going on in my life, what's happening with my friends living in Vegas, what the future of the podcast looks like and - most importantly - reach out to everyone to find out how all of YOU are doing.

And don't forget: If you need someone to talk to during these difficult and - frankly - weird times, feel free to reach out and send me a direct message on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.  I'm always here and willing to connect!

Special Episode: Las Vegas & Covid-19

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Let's be honest...these are some weird, scary times.  And Covid-19 is having a HUGE unprecedented effect on Las Vegas right now.

I wanted to put something together to talk what's going on.  I wanted to share my thoughts & feelings about how it's affecting me, how it's affecting my friends in Las Vegas and - most importantly - how it's affecting you guys...my loyal listeners.

I actually did this episode as a Facebook Live video, so if you'd like to get the "full experience" check out the video for yourself.

Thanks for your support during these tough times.  Stay strong, stay safe and stay healthy everyone.

 

EP#56: Mid-Night Munchies

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Anyone who's been to Vegas has been there: It's 3am, you're making your way back to your hotel but before you can crash out for the night you need to put something in your belly...and I'm here to help you with that - with the assistance of an expert, of course.

My guest for this episode of the podcast is Lindsay Stewart, a Vegas-based foodie and Instagrammer with over 200,000 followers.  We talked about her favourite spots to grab a late-night bite - along with a few menu suggestions - as well as how she made the move to Las Vegas, what made her decide to jump into the Instagram world and some of the cool experiences she's gotten to have since starting her Instagram feed.

Be sure to drool-proof your computer, tablet or smartphone and start following Lindsay on Instagram as well as on Twitter & Facebook.

And, as promised, here's the list of spots we discussed as potential spots for Mid-Night Munchies in Las Vegas...

On The Strip:

Allegro at the Wynn; Tacos El Gordo; Secret Pizza at the Cosmopolitan; Beauty & Essex at the Cosmopolitan; Nomad Bar at Park MGM; Grand Lux Cafe at the Venetian

Off The Strip:

Herbs & Rye; Ferraro's Italian Restaurant; The Bootlegger Italian Bistro; Pho Kim Long; The Golden Tiki; Evel Pie Downtown; Tacos & Beer; Cleaver Butchered Meats, Seafood and Classic Cocktails; Village Pub & The Front Yard at Ellis Island

 

EP#55: Interview With An Escort

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There's an old adage that says "Sex Sells"...and I don't think there's anywhere in the world where that's more prevalent than in Las Vegas.

From the moment you step off the plane, you're bombarded with sex - from almost-naked showgirls on the strip asking for photos, to cab-top advertisements for topless shows, to giant roadside billboards for strip clubs, to a very public escort industry...which is where we're headed this time around.

My guest for this episode of the podcast is Kate Layne, a Vegas-based escort who's been "officially" working in the industry for the last 4 years and has been involved in the industry in some form for approximately 6 years.

Kate and I talked about how she ended up living in Las Vegas, how and why she decided to start working as an escort, how she keeps her life as Kate separate from her "real life" and some of the common misconceptions surrounding people working in the escort industry.

And because this is a judgement-free podcast where I know people are grown-ass adults capable of making their own decisions on whether or not to partake in the industry, Kate also shared some etiquette tips for men who might wish to enjoy the company of an escort as well as some safety tips so you can avoid getting robbed, ending up in jail...or worse.

EP#54: Know The Limits

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If you're anything like me, you've got your smartphone loaded up with apps to help you navigate your Las Vegas adventure...from rideshare apps to casino loyalty apps to gaming apps that help you earn freebies.

But if you're a table games player & you're headed to Vegas anytime soon you need to get your hands on a brand new app called Betmingo.

Betmingo provides crowd-sourced info about tables at casinos all across Las Vegas...in REAL TIME thanks to app users!

My guest for this episode is Gabe Punsalan, the co-founder and co-creator of Betmingo.  Gabe and I chatted about the concept & development of the app, how the app works and the plans for the future of Betmingo.

For more information, visit Betmingo online and make sure to download the app for both Apple and Android devices!  You can also follow Betmingo on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for all the latest updates!

EP#53: Girls Gone Vegas

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I recently had a request from a listener who wanted a few suggestions for planning a "girls vacation" to Las Vegas.  Since I'm a 44 year-old married man who usually travels with Vegas either solo or with my wife, I felt I was drastically unqualified to assist - which is why I reached out to my guests for this episode of the podcast...

MJ & Bree are the hosts of the Keeping It Casual Podcast, a sex-positive dating & relationship advice podcast based in Las Vegas.  Whenever I'd listen to their show, they'd talk about all the cool spots they were hitting in Vegas so I thought they'd be perfect to help me plan out the Ultimate Girls Trip!

We covered all the important stuff - including hotels, restaurants, clubs and spas - plus we covered how to avoid "drama" on a girls trip and how to keep yourself safe in Sin City.

The ladies also hit me with a few questions they like to ask the guests on their podcast, which was an absolute blast!

If you'd like to check out the Keeping It Casual Podcast you can get it wherever you find your favourite podcasts of visit their website - where you can also get info on live appearances & merchandise.  And be sure to connect with both MJ & Bree on social media where you can "slide into their DM's" for Vegas hook-up's:

Follow @MJRadioDiva and @Breemixed on Twitter

EP#52: Superstitious Feeling

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Whether we like to admit it or not, we're all a little superstitious in our own little ways.  And I don't think there's anywhere in the world where that superstitious nature is on display more than in Las Vegas.

Some people have lucky shirts they wear when playing Blackjack, others tap the side of the slot machine in between spins and some refuse to use $50 bills when they're gambling.  

But is there any science to superstitions?  My guest for this episode of the podcast is here to answer that question...

Stuart Vyse is a behavioural scientist, a teacher and a writer.  He's also an expert on superstition and irrational behaviour who's been quoted in the New York Times & Washington Post and has appeared on CBS Sunday Morning & NPR's Science Friday.

We discussed some of the most common superstitions & their origins, whether or not certain cultures are more superstitious than others and famous superstitions in the world of sports, music & theater.

If you'd like to learn more about Stuart and the world of superstitions & irrational behaviour, be sure to visit his website.

Stuart's books, "Believing In Magic: The Science of Superstition" and "Superstition: A Very Short Introduction" are both available via his website or from your favourite book seller. 

EP#51: Cheating The Odds

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My guest for this episode of the podcast is Heather Ferris, the CEO & Founder of Vegas Aces, an online casino dealing and gaming school.  Heather joined me once before back in episode #13 to help me get over my fear of table games and to teach me the basics of Blackjack.

This time around, she's here to chat about something infinitely more interesting: Cheating in casinos.

Heather & I connected at the gaming lab at UNLV to talk about the different types of cheating that people try to pull off, the legalities of counting cards & whether or not that's considered "cheating" and we discussed the point at which "skill" becomes "cheating".

You can find Heather online via the official Vegas Aces website.  Also, be sure to follow Vegas Aces on Twitter & Facebook and check out the Vegas Aces YouTube Channel featuring weekly live streams (including this fun one where Heather taught me how to play Craps).

EP#50: The January Trip Report

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Welcome to another world famous Jeff Does Vegas Trip Report chronicling my most recent trip to Vegas - my first of 2020 - from January 11-14.

This time around I've got a brief review of my stay at The Flamingo plus my experience of trying to add a night to my original booking at the Linq.  I've also got quick reviews of the restaurants I hit up this time around including Guy Fieri's Vegas Kitchen & Bar at the Linq, Ri-Ra Irish Pub at Mandalay Bay, Gordon Ramsay Burger at Planet Hollywood and Evel Pie downtown.

Also on this trip, I visited The Mob Museum, hung out at Downtown Container Park with MJ & Bree from the Keeping It Casual Podcast (watch for them to appear in an upcoming episode of the podcast) and learned how to play Craps in a YouTube Live Stream with past guest & friend Heather Ferris from Vegas Aces.

I also got to experience my very first Vegas Jackpot/Handpay Slot Win on this trip...and got the experience the fun of having the government take 30% of the win <insert sad face emoji here>.

EP#49: Pinball Hall Of Fame

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If you're of a certain generation, chances are that you spent a fair portion of your youth wasting time at the local arcade, hanging with your friends and dropping quarters into your favorite video games & pinball machines.  And if you're planning on visiting Las Vegas anytime soon, you can re-live those memories at the Pinball Hall of Fame.

My guest for this episode of the podcast is Tim Arnold, the founder of the Pinball Hall of Fame - which is always ranked as one of Vegas's top attractions & is always at the top of my list of recommendations for folks headed to Las Vegas.

During one of my recent Vegas trips, I headed over to see Tim at the Pinball Hall of Fame where he took a break from working on a vintage machine to sit and chat with me.  We talked about his start in the arcade business, the beginnings of the Pinball Hall of Fame and the future plans for the Hall of Fame - including a new building south of the strip, set to begin construction this year.

To learn more about the Pinball Hall of Fame - including location, hours and history - be sure to visit their official website.

EP#48: My Special Guest - Vin A.

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My special guest for this episode of the podcast is Vin A. of The Bronx Wanderers...

The Bronx Wanderers have been headlining on the Las Vegas Strip for the last 3 years and at the end of 2019, they celebrated their 1000th Vegas show.  Fronted by dad Vinny Adinolfi - a recording industry legend in his own right - the band features sons Nicky & Vin A. as well as several of Vin's high school friends.

Vin and I sat down for a conversation during one of my recent Las Vegas trips.  We chatted about the history of the Bronx Wanderers, what it's like performing & touring with family and what life is like in Vegas.  Vin also took us "behind the curtain" on the topic of producing a show in Las Vegas & also did a great job explaining the high turnover on shows on the Vegas strip.

For information, tickets and showtimes visit The Bronx Wanderers website.  Also, be sure to check out Vin A's podcast "What The Cl#ck?!?".  Check it out on Apple Podcasts OR check out the video version!

EP#47: The December Trip Report

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Welcome to another world famous Jeff Does Vegas Trip Report featuring a recap of my most recent trip to Las Vegas - my EIGHTH of the year - from December 15-19, 2019.

My wife was along for this trip and this time around, I've got reviews of our stay at Bally's as well as meals at La Pizza e La Pasta in Eataly at Park MGM, Le Thai on Fremont Street, Bacchanal Buffet at Caesars Palace and the legendary Golden Steer Steakhouse.  We were also lucky enough to take in a few shows including Atomic Saloon at the Venetian, Carrot Top at the Luxor and Bronx Wanderers at the Linq.

I've also got thoughts on three major trends happening in Las Vegas and why/how pigeons are better behaved than the tourists.

EP#46: The Full Reveal - The Burlesque Hall of Fame Museum

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When people think of "Burlesque", they usually think of scantily clad - or perhaps even topless - women, titillating & teasing crowds with their seductive dance moves.  But there's way more to it than that...as you're about to learn.

My guest for this episode of the podcast is Dustin Wax of The Burlesque Hall of Fame Museum in Las Vegas - which, by the way, is the ONLY burlesque museum in the world.  Dustin and I chatted all about the history of the museum, their annual Miss Exotic World Pageant & Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend as well as the history, evolution and recent resurgence in the popularity of burlesque performances.

If you want information about The Burlesque Hall of Fame Museum, be sure to check out their official website and also follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

EP#45: My Special Guest - Mark Shunock

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My special guest for this episode of the podcast is someone who I've talked about a lot in past episodes of the show; in fact, some of you think I talk about him a bit too much...but I'm hoping that by having him on, you'll understand why I spend so much time talking about him & the events he puts together.

Mark Shunock is the creator & host of Mondays Dark, a twice-monthly charity event that raises $10,000 in 90 minutes for local Las Vegas charities.  For just $20, people have the chance to head to Mark's off-strip venue, The Space, to see some of Vegas's top talent donate their time for some amazing causes.

More than that though, Mark is a friend.  In fact, in the 6 years that I've known him, he's become one my closest friends.  He's been there to support my wife and I through some tough times and when I told him I wanted to launch this podcast a year ago, without hesitation he offered to help in any way he could.

In fact, without Mark, this podcast might not even exist; many of the conversations I've had on this podcast are because of connections I've made through him, Mondays Dark and The Space.

Mark was kind enough to take time to sit & chat with me to share the story of the origin & evolution of Mondays Dark, talk about how he & his wife Cheryl have made Las Vegas their home and some of the big projects he's been able to put together at The Space.

Mondays Dark will be celebrating its 6th Anniversary on Monday, December 9th at the Pearl Theater at The Palms - but beyond that they'll be reaching a major milestone as they get set to partner with their 100th charity marking ONE MILLION DOLLARS raised for local Las Vegas charities!

For information & tickets to the Mondays Dark 6th Anniversary show, visit the Mondays Dark website.

Be sure to follow Mondays Dark on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for updates on upcoming shows & events.

Also, follow Mark Shunock on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

EP#44: The November Trip Report

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Freshly returned from another Las Vegas trip - my seventh of 2019 - I'm here to share another World Famous Jeff Does Vegas Trip Report!

This time around, I've got a review of my Ultra-Hip room at Planet Hollywood as well as meals at Eggslut, Herbs & Rye, Grand Lux Cafe at the Venetian, Ri-Ra Irish Pub at Mandalay Bay and the opening of The Front Yard at Ellis Island.  

I've also got thoughts on the in-game experience at T-Mobile Arena with the Vegas Golden Knights, why Rock N' Roll Marathon weekend is a terrible time to arrive in Vegas and I'm re-sharing my advice on how to cross the road in Las Vegas.

 

EP#43: KABOOM! The National Atomic Testing Museum

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It's a little-known fact that just over 60 miles away from the glitz & glamour of the Las Vegas Strip, the US government used to test Atomic Weapons!

Just as the Cold War was starting to heat up, the US Department of Energy began the testing of Nuclear Bombs in the Nevada desert.  The blasts would light up the early morning sky and the mushroom clouds could be seen from miles away on the rooftops of the downtown hotels.

Helping to keep this history alive is one of my favourite attractions, The National Atomic Testing Museum.

My guest on this episode is Michael Hall, the museum's Executive Director.  Michael and I discussed the United States' Atomic Testing program, the effects it had on Las Vegas as well as the incredible exhibits on display at the museum.

For tickets and information on The National Atomic Testing Museum visit their website & be sure to check them out on Twitter and Instagram.

EP#42: Long Live The King - Elvis In Vegas

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July 31, 1969 was a day that changed Las Vegas forever.

It was on that day that Elvis Presley stepped onto the stage at the newly-opened International Hotel to kick off a four-week engagement in their massive new 2000-seat showroom.  At the time, Elvis was thought to be "over the hill" and "washed up" but the run of concerts didn't just revive the King of Rock N' Roll's career...it helped revive Las Vegas.

My guest for this episode of the podcast is Richard Zoglin, author of the book Elvis In Vegas: How The King Reinvented The Las Vegas Show.

Richard and I talked about Elvis's first appearance in Las Vegas in 1956, the leisure time Elvis spent in Vegas & the "unlikely" friendships he made along the way, the toll Elvis's Las Vegas performances took on his health and the effect that Elvis had on Las Vegas - from the doors he opened for future entertainers to the presence he still maintains in the city.

If you'd like to order your own copy of Elvis In Vegas: How The King Reinvented The Las Vegas Show head to Richard Zoglin's website or visit your favorite bookseller.

 

EP#41: Viva Scare Vegas - Las Vegas Ghost Tours

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I have a very simple question for you:  Do you believe in ghosts?

If your answer is "Yes", then you're going to love this episode.  Honestly, even if your answer is "No" you're STILL going to love this episode!

With Las Vegas's shady past, it should come as no surprise that Sin City is blessed with its own share of spookiness.  A quick Google search reveals multiple spots both on and off the famous strip that are believed to be haunted by the famous, the infamous and the not-so-famous.

Just in time for Halloween, I'm joined by Josef Kruger of Las Vegas Ghost Tours who's here to share some of the creepiest tales of Las Vegas spooks & spectres.

For example...Which hotel was ravaged by a fire that killed 85 of its guests, some of whom haven't quite "checked out"?  What resort is haunted by its infamous mobster former owner?  And where can you go in Las Vegas to hang out with the ghost of a murdered rap superstar?

For the answers to these - and other - terrifying questions start listening now!

And for tickets to join Las Vegas Ghost Tours, visit their website or start following them on Facebook.

 

EP#40: Bright Lights, Big City - The Neon Museum Las Vegas

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One of the things Las Vegas is perhaps most famous for are the bright neon lights of the World Famous Vegas Strip.  But as resorts close down or signs are replaced with massive HD LED video screens, what happens to those iconic neon signs?

Amanda Riley of the Neon Museum Las Vegas joins me on this episode to answer that question!

We talked about museum's mission to preserve Las Vegas' history, some of the unique & interesting signs in the museum's collection, their plans for future expansion and a very special exhibit/collaboration involving a major Hollywood director.

For tickets and information on the Neon Museum Las Vegas you can visit their website.  Also, be sure to follow the Neon Museum on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

 

EP#39: Vegas For The Low Roller

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The topic for this episode of the show comes courtesy of listener, Jacob Kehl from Denmark.  Jacob really wanted to me to do an episode featuring tips & tricks for the Vegas Low Roller.

Jacob, your wish is my command!

And joining me to talk about the right way to Low Roll in Las Vegas is friend of the show, making his second appearance on the podcast, Sergio Portesan - the creator of the website Viva Las Value!  Sergio and I talked about the best websites to find discount Vegas hook-up's, suggestions for low roller hotels, restaurants & bars and how to make your bankroll last longer when hitting the tables & machines.

For all the details, check out Sergio's website, Viva Las Value and be sure to follow him on Twitter and Facebook! And if you want to learn the story behind the creation of Viva Las Value, go back in the archives and check out EP#14: Viva Las Value.

 

EP#38: Going To The Chapel

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There's no question that Las Vegas is the wedding capital of the world.  Every day, an average of 330 couples tie the not - which equals out to approximately 120,000 weddings every year!

But why?  How is it that a city known as "Sin City" is also the most popular place on the planet to get hitched?

To answer that question - and many more - I'm joined by a Las Vegas legend:  Charolette Richards, the owner of A Little White Wedding Chapel.

There are literally dozens of wedding chapels up and down the Vegas strip but A Little White Wedding Chapel is easily one of the most famous and recognizable.  In the almost-60 years that Charolette has been running the place, hundreds of thousands of couples have pledged their love for each other with Charolette herself personally officiating tens of thousands of weddings.

Charolette shared the story of how she ended up in Las Vegas & how she ended up working in the Las Vegas wedding world as well as her tips & tricks to a long and happy marriage.

If you want to plan your own Las Vegas wedding & you've got questions, check out this handy link full of info from the folks at Vegas.com - and when you're ready to tie the knot, get ahold of Charolette and the folks at A Little White Wedding Chapel.

 

EP#37: 10/01/17 #VegasStrong

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This episode of the podcast is quite different in tone & tenor from any of the previous episodes I've released; there's no fanfare, no music, no sound effects...and there's a reason for that.

I'm releasing this episode on the eve of the second anniversary of the worst mass shooting in US history - the massacre at the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival on October 1, 2017.

In this episode, I share my thoughts & feelings, talk about how the city of Las Vegas came together in the days & weeks following the tragedy and pay tribute to the 58 people who lost their lives enjoying something they loved.

EP#36: Sports Betting For Dummies

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For this episode, I've decided to tackle a topic people have been asking about almost since I started doing the podcast:  Sports Gambling.  Honestly though, I know absolutely NOTHING about betting on sports...so I decided to call in an expert!

My special guest this time around is Minty Bets.  Minty is a Las Vegas local who shares her tips & tricks on her Twitter & Instagram pages and she's also a member of the team at WagerTalk TV, where she - along with the rest of the crew - make their weekly picks.

We talked about how and why Minty got into sports betting, we covered common terminology, the different types of wagers that can be made and she shared some tips & tricks and do's & don't's for first-timers.

Follow Minty Bets on Twitter & Instagram and subscribe to WagerTalk TV on YouTube.

 

EP#35: My Special Guest - Jimmy Denning

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For almost 3 years, Tenors Of Rock have been headlining on the Las Vegas Strip, performing Classic Rock...with a twist.  They made their Vegas debut at Harrah's in January 2017 and have since made the move to Planet Hollywood, performing 7 nights per week.

My special guest for this episode of the podcast is Jimmy Denning, one of the founding members of Tenors Of Rock.

Jimmy and I connected backstage at the Sin City Theater before a show where we chatted about his musical career, the formation & history of Tenors of Rock, life in Las Vegas and some of the side projects he's picked up since moving to Vegas - including his jump into the podcast world.  He also shared a random David Hasselhoff anecdote and I made things awkward by telling him that my wife loves him.

If you're headed to Las Vegas, be sure to get your tickets to check out Tenors of Rock LIVE!  And if you're a boxing fan, check out Jimmy's podcast Sin City Sluggers and follow the show on Twitter to find out which boxing legend he'll be chatting with next.

 

EP#34: Vegas FAQ

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For this episode of the podcast, I've put together a little something I'm calling Vegas FAQ.

The concept is pretty simple; I've gathered up all the Vegas-related questions that I see asked most frequently on Twitter & Facebook - and even the ones I personally get asked most often - and I'm going to attempt to answer all of them here in this episode.

I'm going to cover a TON of material here - including questions about money & budgets, getting around Las Vegas, what the weather is like at different times of the year and even those totally subjective questions about hotels, restaurants & shows.  And you can't have "Sin City" with the "Sin" so I'm even going to discuss liquor laws, marijuana laws & prostitution laws.

And because there's so much info in this episode, I've made my notes available to you - Click here to download the PDF file!