Best of 2019 NomineeFeatures

HARD ROCK OF AGES: As it nears closure, Vegas’ Hard Rock Hotel & Casino opens memorabilia exhibit that will (that will) rock you

Sinatra’s martini glass? Liberace’s rings-’n-things? Dino’s hangover cure? Sorry, not here, gang. True, those Strip heroes swung hard and played harder to turn Las Vegas into Vegas, baby! They never rocked, though. Certainly, they never Hard-Rocked.

Which is why, in this Hard-Rockin’ room, you’ll instead find James Brown’s “SEX” jumpsuit and Pete Townshend’s smashed-in-half stage axe. Not to mention (fine, we’ll mention it) Britney’s come-hither schoolgirl outfit in which she channeled the spirit of Nabokov’s Lolita into a 3-1/2-minute pop-anthem video, triggering worldwide leers.

View it, baby, one more time. Right here.

Best of 2019 NomineeNews

BEAM US UP, VEGAS: Ceremonial hoisting of final construction beam marks milestone for Las Vegas Convention Center District expansion

Carpenters, iron workers, steel workers, pipe workers and skilled craftspeople of multiple construction disciplines — in total, about 650 of them from the combined teams of Martin-Harris Construction and Turner Construction — have imprinted their souls, their sweat and their names upon it. Watch it go up, up, up and … INTO PLACE.

And there it is: the crane-lifted placement on Aug. 20 of the final beam, maneuvered with ceremonial fanfare, for what will be the new Las Vegas Convention Center exhibition hall — all 600,000 square feet of it.

“I got a little bit of a shiver,” says Brian Yost, COO of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA, which produces Las Vegas Newswire) after the hoisting, the beam adorned with an America flag, banners bearing construction and union logos, and a compact, symbolic evergreen tree plopped atop it. “I was looking at the two tradesmen that were up there receiving that final beam and locking it into place. Just incredible admiration for the hard work that they do and the courage they exhibit, standing on the cutting edge of those beams. It brings it all into perspective.”

Best of 2019 NomineeFeaturesSpotlight

AMIGOS & BUDDIES & PALS, OH MY!: Interactive art project at Delano invites us, via Post-it Note, to answer one question: What is a real friend?

“It’s a really simple question,” says Tanja Hollander, the artistic inquisitor behind the Post-it Note-slathered art installation, Are You Really My Friend? at Delano Las Vegas through Sept. 22. “But there are so many emotions and values and it really makes you think, even if it’s just for a minute, of what a person means to you.”