Derek Stevens Looks Toward Downtown’s Past to See Its Future – Vegas Seven

In this week’s Green Felt Journal, I talk about two of Derek Stevens’ latest moves in Downtown Las Vegas. How are they tied to the past? The past few weeks have offered a good perspective on the dance between old Vegas, new Vegas and new old Vegas that characterizes our times. In particular, two incidents … Read more

A Big Weekend Ahead for Future Stars of Wrestling – Vegas Seven

This week, my job for Vegas Seven is to explain why wrestling fans should be excited about what Future Stars of Wrestling is doing this weekend: Future Stars of Wrestling, the Las Vegas-based grappling promotion that features both local and national talent kicks off its Inaugural Wrestling Hall of Fame Ceremony on Friday May 19. … Read more

Live Out Your Dreams in the Ring at Fantasy Slam Wrestling – Vegas Seven

This was a fascinating story to write. With the growth of fantasy camps for just about everything, it was probably only a matter of time before one sprung up for professional wrestling. It has, and it’s in Las Vegas: And that’s why you’re all in a small but professional studio in a generic industrial space … Read more

Visiting the Island at UNLV Special Collections

The last of my trilogy of Tropicana birthday/anniversary pieces is this blog post from UNLV Special Collections that looks at a different era of the Strip mainstay that is celebrating its 60th: For research into the Tropicana, one of the best resources is the Tropicana Promotional and Publicity Material Collection, nine boxes of press clippings, … Read more

Sixty years ago, the Tropicana opened under Mob’s hidden control | The Mob Museum

To commemorate the April 4, 1957 opening of the Tropicana, I wrote a guest blog post for the Mob Museum: It just so happened that Conquistador’s owner, “Dandy” Phil Kastel, had a long and fruitful partnership with Frank Costello, perhaps the nation’s most infamous gangster in the spring of 1957. For years, Kastel had run … Read more