Tag Archives: animals

Las Vegas Event Honors Four-Legged Beasts

Today, April 10, grab your favorite four-legged friend and head down to the largest animal event Nevada has to offer.  In its 11th year, Petapalooza takes over Star Nursery Field at Sam Boyd Stadium.  

The daylong pet-friendly concert funds more than 40 animal rescue groups and features acoustic performances by the Barenaked Ladies and Five for Fighting, among others. 

Last year, more than 20,000 attendees and 4,000 leashed dogs—along with a few parrots, potbellied pigs and snakes—took in the event. 

Admission is $7 or $5 with a can of dog food.  Event is from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

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“Crocodarium” Planned for Las Vegas

Yesterday, Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman, speaking at the Las Vegas Perspective annual business event at the Four Seasons, vowed he will lure Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin’s family to Las Vegas, building what Goodman called a “crocodarium.” 

Goodman said the Irwin family is currently in active talks with Las Vegas to re-fashion the Cashman Center and Cashman Field Complex, home to many trade shows and the Las Vegas 51s minor league baseball team, turning it into a huge, full-fledged zoo emphasizing Australian animals. 

Goodman added that the Cashman Center could relocate to newer convention facilities, such as the new 30,000-square-foot MEET venue, which opened last week in downtown Las Vegas at Fourth Street and Bridger Avenue. {Previously reported by Las Vegas Backstage Access.}  

Las Vegas, Goodman added, would also relocate the 51s minor league baseball facility, which sorely needs an upgrade. 

Ex-mob lawyer Goodman, apparently loving all things not just scaly, but furry with four legs as well, is also currently working with the Las Vegas Zoo officials, helping them to bring a new baboon exhibit, among others, that will soon open and much other needed facelifts to the otherwise droopy facility, thanks, in part, to ongoing aid from the San Diego Zoo.

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Las Vegas Extreme Makeover: Ape Edition

Apes everywhere are likely celebrating their new digs planned for Las Vegas.  Reportedly, there will be an ape exhibit containing six apes in a new Las Vegas habitat in the next few months. ape

Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman is also probably going Ape Ga-Ga (vs. Lady Gaga, who is also coming to Las Vegas shortly) over the announcement- highly endangered apes are his favorite animals. 

Representatives from the San Diego Zoo were in Las Vegas last week at the Las Vegas Zoo and announced a donation of $15,000 for the improvement of the ape and desert tortoise exhibits.  

Zoo officials are asking the public for donations to help build the new exhibit, which will provide a more natural-looking habitat for the animals.  Each will cost $50,000.

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San Diego Zoo Helps Las Vegas Desert Tortoises

The San Diego Zoo is showing off work it is doing at a Las Vegas center to help repopulate an endangered species of desert tortoise. The zoo took over the Desert Tortoise Conservation Center in rural Clark County in Nevada in March. deserttortoise

Since then, business has apparently been booming– they have hired five full-time and five seasonal employees. 

The zoo plans to study, breed and raise tortoises, train new researchers and educate the public. 

The facility was established in 1990 on more than 11,000 acres managed by the Bureau of Land Management. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service took it over in 2007. 

It takes in about 1,000 tortoises abandoned as pets or found injured in the wild each year. Up to 4,000 tortoises already live there.

Since it opened, the center has released 8,000 tortoises into the wild.

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Former Hollywood Madam Heidi Fleiss Plots Dirty Dog Deeds with Porn Star Homey in Las Vegas

The former Hollywood madam Heidi Fleiss enjoys doing most anything dirty in Nevada.  Her dirty empire is now morphing, going to the dogs, with grandiose plans to grow it leaps and bounds.  Heidi Fleiss

dirtylaundryFirst, Fleiss gave a boost to Pahrump, Nevada tax revenues in 2007, and since, by opening her very successful Dirty Laundry coin-op laundromat business.  Now, she’s got a new plan– taking dead aim at cleaning all the dirty dogs in Las Vegas. 

Fleiss is the new owner of a small dog grooming business located in a Kmart shopping center at Sunset and Sandhill roads in Las Vegas that offers everything from doggy dye jobs, nail polish pet-icures, to self-service stations where, if so inclined, you can wash your own dirty ol’ pooch.

They’re calling their business Dirty Dog, though the sign above the door still bears the business’ old name, Little Buddy Bath. 

Kendra RossiFleiss’ business partner in the venture is Kendra Jade Rossi, left, a porn star and recovering sex addict who said she plans to regularly commute to Las Vegas from her home in Los Angeles.  

Their place is open for business, but it’s a bit of a mess right now as Fleiss and company remodel with calming colors and distressed antique furniture meant to give it that “shabby-chic look.”  When they’re done, Fleiss hopes, their doggy salon is going to look like something you would find in a ritzy Los Angeles shopping area. 

“But it’s going to feel in your pocket like you just went to Kmart,” Rossi said. 

Fleiss got the dirty dog bug and decided to get into the grooming business after she attended PetSmart Inc.’s annual meeting in June and learned how much money people spend on their pets each year– to the tune of $6 billion! 

“I wish I’d known about this before. I never would have gone into the sex business or any other business,” Fleiss quipped. 

Fleiss went to the PetSmart meeting in New York City to speak on behalf of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), which has called on the retailer to phase out the sale of live birds. 

Fleiss has always had a true, enduring love for all types of flesh, feathered and furred animals.  She developed a passion for parrots almost immediately after she moved to Pahrump in 2005 and inherited a menagerie of 26 of the exotic birds from her elderly neighbor.  She now shares her home with her feathered friends, letting them fly free without confining cages. 

Fleiss originally moved to the town 60 miles west of Las Vegas to open a unique brothel for women called the Stud Farm, but she later abandoned that idea amid political pressure and excessive government red tape.  [Feb. 13 Las Vegas Backstage Access article.] 

Fleiss and Rossi struck up an amiable friendship recently when they appeared together on the VH1 rehab reality show “Sober House,” where Fleiss went after soon-to-be-televised treatment for drug addiction. 

“We formed our own little clique,” said Rossi, who runs an animal rescue in Los Angeles. 

Fleiss said they bonded over their love of animals. “The way I am about birds, she is about dogs,” she said. 

They are already talking about expanding the shop and adding boarding services and dog nutrition counseling. And that’s just the beginning. 

“We don’t want one Dirty Dog, we want 100 Dirty Dogs,” Fleiss said, adding the pet industry looks like a can’t-miss proposition.  

“Anything with animals does really well. Come on, people buy their dogs $8,000 Gucci sweaters,” she said. “People get over their mother or brother dying. They never get over their pet dying.” 

So why should people trust their beloved pets to a madam and a porn star who just happily met each other in rehab? 

“I changed my whole life for animals,” Fleiss said, adding her past is just that- the past.

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Las Vegas World Movie Premier: “Ace Ventura Jr.: Pet Detective” on March 8

Celebrities galore plan to walk the “green carpet” for the world movie premiere of “Ace Ventura Jr.: Pet ace-venturaDetective” on Sunday at Noon (line forms at 10 a.m.) at the Springs Preserve at 333 S. Valley View Blvd. in Las Vegas. 

The event, sponsored by Johnny Brenden (Brenden Theatres at the Palms) and the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, features celebrity hosts Ryan Malgarini (CBS’ Gary Unmarried) and Brittany Curran (Legally Blondes).  And walking the carpet from the film will be Josh Flitter (Nancy Drew, License to Wed), Emma Lockhart (Batman Begins), Austin Rogers (Drillbit Taylor), Reed Alexander (Nickelodeon’s iCarly), Adam Hicks (How to Eat Fried Worms, Shaggy Dog), Hunter Clary (Fuel, The Transporter II, Meet the Spartans) and Dan Curtis Lee (Upcoming Zeke & Luther, Ned’s Classified School Survival Guide). 

Attendees can receive autographs from their favorite celebrities and then all are invited to a special movie showing at the venue. 

The movie follows the Ace Ventura motion picture series made popular by Jim Carrey.  Actor Josh Flitter, 12, plays Ace Jr., the son of the eccentric detective who steps into his father’s shoes after his mother is wrongly arrested for stealing a baby panda.  The movie provides a new generation of family fun and goof-brained comedy panda-monium as Ace Ventura Jr. teams with adventurous girl-next-door Laura (Emma Lockhart) and nerdish gizmo-wiz A-Plus (Austin Rogers) to chase down leads and laughs.

Ready for fun? Allriiiighty-then. Ace – Ace Jr. is on the case!

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Illusionists Siegfried & Roy – & Career-Ending White Bengal Tiger -Take Final Las Vegas Curtain Call

Future performances from iconic Las Vegas illusionists Siegfried and Roy – and the white Bengal tiger that ended their prior careers – are, sadly, over.  siegfried

For their last hurrah the trio shared the stage on February 28 at the Bellagio Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas for their haunting final performance for the 13th annual “Power of Love” gala benefit for the Keep Memory Alive organization, proceeds going to the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health in Las Vegas. 

Hosted by Robin Leach, in the audience were Teri Hatcher, Leeza Gibbons, Hilary Duff, Danny DeVito and his wife, Rhea Perlman, comic actor (and former Riviera entertainment director) Steve Schirripa, Muhammed Ali, Kristin Davis, and Jane’s Addiction front man Perry Ferrell.

The gala began by feasting on mouth-watering cuisine from chef’s Todd English, Wolfgang Puck, David Robins, Martin Heierling, and Jean-Philippe Maury. 

Then the abbreviated charity show saw Roy Horn and Siegfried Fischbacher side by side with Montecore, the massive white tiger that brutally mauled Horn during a 2003 performance.

Horn re-emerged Saturday dressed in a Gothic-style black-and-white robe, his face covered with a skeletal mask. The dark stage was covered in smoke.  Horn limped slowly onstage, often steadying himself on Fischbacher’s shoulder.

The two slowly performed a signature illusion as Fischbacher, dressed in white robes and a mask, stood inside a cage, which was cloaked in drapes.  As Horn removed the curtain seconds later, Fischbacher appeared across stage, a hulking white Bengal tiger in his place- it was Montecore.

As the crowd took to its feet, the men removed their masks and Fischbacher was standing between Montecore and Horn. They waved and blew kisses at the audience, but said nothing.

An announcer left the crowd with this final thought: “Within all of us there is an illusive melody, which when heard and followed will lead you to the fulfillment of your fondest dreams.”

On October 3, 2003, Montecore sank its teeth deep into Horn’s neck, dragging him offstage in front of a horrified audience. The illusionist, now 64, was partially paralyzed, suffering a damaged neck artery and crushed windpipe. 

After 13 years and more than 5,000 performances, the “Siegfried & Roy” show at The Mirage immediately went dark, ending one of the most successful shows in Las Vegas history.

During Horn’s long rehabilitation, though, both men remained devoted to their exotic habitat on the Las Vegas Strip. The Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat at The Mirage hotel-casino houses lions, tigers and leopards. Fischbacher, 69, has called it Horn’s “reason to get up in the morning.”

The benefactor for the event, the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health, will treat brain disorders like those Horn now suffers, is set to open later this year in a building designed by architect Frank Gehry.

An estimated $12 million was raised by the event for the Ruvo center, punctuated by  a $450,000 bid on a Rolls-Royce trimmed with the Keep Memory Alive logo, and a $5 million donation by Chuck Mathewson, CEO emeritus of IGT.   Steve and Elaine Wynn donated another $1 million.

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