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SAM’S BEST BETS

Sam Bauman
Entertainment Editor

SAM’S BEST BETS

We’re back after a few weeks out to have a new right knee installed. Once again we’ll be updating the entertainment picture for Carson City and Lake Tahoe, plus Reno and who knows where else. Much is going on that we couldn’t get into Thursday’s paper, so here’s some new entertainment opportunities. This report will appear Fridays at the Nevada Appeal Web site, nevadaappeal.com. Contact Sam Bauman, entertainment editor, with any questions at Sbauman@nevadaappeal.com or 881-1236.

If you failed to snag one of the tickets to the Taste of Downtown Saturday, you might want to turn back the clock and take in The Lettermen Friday and Saturday at John Ascuaga’s Nugget in Sparks. Tickets are $30 for the 8 p.m. show. Call (800) 648-1177.

Then there’s the all-time legend Smokey Robinson at the MontBleu in Stateline Saturday at 9 p.m. Smokey’s show is the Opening Day Lake Tahoe summer celebration. Tickets are $55-$70 at (800) 648-3353.

Coming up next week at the Grand Sierra Casino in Reno is Billy Idol at 8:30 p.m. in the Grand Theater. He was a cultural star in the 1980s and still shines pretty brightly. Catch him Saturday for $55 at 789-2000.

Up at Harrah’s Lake Tahoe Judy Collins and Lee Lottke team up for musical fun at 7:30 p.m. Saturday. Tickets go for $45 and the show is part of Lake Tahoe celebrations.

Robert Plant and Alison Krauss with T-Bone Burnett and Sharon Little appear June 28 at Harveys Lake Tahoe. This one will cost you $49 to $89 at 786-8497. James Tayor will appear at Harveys outdoor July 26. Gotta hear him.

Greg London continues at Harrah’s Reno with his one-man (and two ladies) show “Icons. He’s a mimic, a musician, a quick-change artist and enjoyable. Call 788-2900 for reservations for the 8 p.m. show. Tickets are $31.95 and $36.95.

Nikki’s Beach at the Grand Sierra has reopened from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. $10 gets you into the lush swim area. And the ALLCITY Live lounge there is no more, now it’s the Pearl Champagne Lounge. Cover is $20 and bubbly is the drink of choice.

That sensational show “FloorPlay” is still turning up the temperature with brilliant dancing and explosive drum work at the Eldorado Casino in Reno.. This is truly one of the best shows to hit Reno in years; the dancers are Olympic in quality. Call 786-5700 for tickets which go at $29.85 to $43.95. You can’t go wrong with this spectacular.

Up at the Lake, Horizons is hosting “Yesterday ” a Tribute to the Beatles,” a 8:30 p.m. Wednesday through Monday. A special “Sgt. Pepper” show is on Saturday night a 10:30. Call 588-6211 for the $26.95 tickets.

Locally, at the Carson Nugget the Rebekah Chase bands plays on into the night, no cover (882-1626). Steppen Stonze wails at the Carson Station (883-0900) and a the Carson Valley Inn in Minden, the Kid ‘n’ Nic are in the Celebrity Lounge ((782-97110.

Keyboardist Salvador Santana and his band are coming to The Tahoe Baltimore July 3, 4 and 5 at 9:30 p.m. each night, bringing a mixture of hip-hop, rock, funk, R&B and traditional Latin sounds. (Salvador is Carlos’s son.) Tickets are $10 at the venue, and at http://www.renegadeshows.com or by calling (530) 583-2801. The Baltimore is n Highway 28, Crystal Bay. Call (800) 245-8667 or 831-0660.

More than 100 children, teens and adults ages 3 to 40 will perform during Ballet Nevada’s annual Student Showcase, “Inspired,” Friday June 20 at 7 p.m. and Saturday June 21 2 p.m. at the Damonte Ranch High School Theater, 10500 Rio Wrangler Parkway in South Reno. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children 11 years old and younger in advance. Tickets at the door are $15 for adults and $7 for children. Advance tickets are online at http://www.balletnevada.com. Call 329-2026 or see info@balletnevada.com.

The Lake Tahoe Music Festival hosts a benefit concert Sunday featuring pianist Jacek Mysinski, considered to be one of the most outstanding pianists of his generation. The concert is at 3 p.m. at the Parasol Foundation Center, 948 Incline Way in Incline Village. Tickets are $40 for adults and students ages 18 and under are free. Call (530) 583-3101.

Sax giant Maceo Parker appears at the River Ranch in North Tahoe Thursday, June 26. This venue is 21 and up. Advance tickets are $25 and are available at the venue or by calling (530) 583-2801.

Singer-songwriter Brandi Carlile sings Thursday June 26 in the Celebrity Showroom at John Ascuaga’s Nugget in Sparks. Carlile plays at 8 p.m. Tickets are $45 at (800) 648-1177 or 356-3300 or by visiting janugget.com.

The party is at the Tahoe Biltmore on Saturday June 28 when Chicago’s Bumpus performs a free concert at 9:30 p.m. The Tahoe Biltmore is on Highway 28, Crystal Bay. Call 831-0660.

Blues rock guitarist/vocalist Coco Montoya will perform at The Great Eldorado BBQ, Brews & Blues Festival in Reno Saturday June 28 at Virginia Street and 4th at 5:30 p.m. Free admission, call (800) 648-5966. Montoya, one of the top-drawing and best-selling artists on the blues rock scene, is on tour in support of his latest release, “Dirty Deal.”

The California Reggae Styles of Rebelution plus guests from Kingston, Jamaica, Rootz Underground play at Whiskey Dick’s Saloon in South Lake Tahoe Sunday June 29 at 9 p.m. There are $12 at Whiskey Dick’s and at http://www.ticketweb.com. This event is 21 and over. Tickets are $15 at the door.

With the current economic climate, summer holiday plans have slowed but that doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate this Fourth of July with a bang. Reno’s Artown is revving up its Fourth of July calendar offering free events with a five-day celebration that includes:

July 2nd

Preservation Hall Jazz Band in Wingfield Park (suggested donation)

July 4th

July 4th Parade in downtown Reno (free)

Reno Celebrates America in Rancho San Rafael (free )

Star Spangled Sparks (free)

Rollin’ on the River featuring The Red Elvises (free)

Movies in the Park featuring “Yankee Doodle Dandy” in Wingfield Park (free)

July 5th

Americana Festival in Wingfield Park (free)

Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis (ticketed and reserved seating)

July 6th

MasterWorks Chorale performance “Patriotic Music for Young and Old” (free)

For details about Artown and its summer calendar, visit http://www.renoisartown.com.