Vegas Weekender: Halloween, headliners, heartthrobs

For many, autumn is considered the best time of the year in Las Vegas. With cooler temperatures, fun outdoor activities, Halloween festivities and non-stop headliners, we can understand why.

Shows

Justin Timberlake

Theater, music and comedy front stage in Vegas

From Oct. 7 – 18, Academy Award-nominated actor Chazz Palminteri acts out 18 different characters in his award-winning play, “A Bronx Tale” at 8 p.m. in the Venetian showroom. It is a heartfelt, coming-of-age story about a boy’s rough childhood in the 1960s. The main character, Cologero, is loosely based on Palminteri’s own childhood.

Fans of all ages can see R&B sensation Mariah Carey sings a decade’s worth of her hits at the Palms Oct. 9 at 8 p.m. Another diva you don’t want to miss is Cher, who performs at Caesars Palace Oct. 10 – 11 at 7:30 p.m.

For a limited time, Howie Mandel performs at 8 p.m. nightly at MGM Grand. See Carlos Mencia Oct. 8 – 9 at TI at 9 p.m. Dane Cook cracks up audiences at The Joint at the Hard Rock, Oct. 9 – 10 at 8:30 p.m.

Barenaked Ladies come to Primm’s Star of the Desert Arena Oct. 9 at 9 p.m. and Motorhead to Mandalay Bay’s House of Blues Oct. 10 at 10 p.m.

Barry Manilow sings all of his greatest hits at the Las Vegas Hilton Oct. 8 – 11, Human Nature belts out the best of Motown at Imperial Palace Oct. 8 – 10 at 8 p.m. and Donny & Marie entertain audiences at the Flamingo Oct. 8 – 11 at 7:30 p.m.

Attractions

Fly high above the city in a helium balloon

Be one of the first to float on Cloud Nine. Known as the world’s largest tethered helium balloon ride, Cloud Nine Balloon Experience floats 500 feet above the ground, offering views of the Strip. The 7-story wide by 11-story high balloon is located across from Mandalay Bay. Cost is $22.50 per person during the day or $27.50 at night.

Head outside and take advantage of the weather

Soar through desert and mountain terrain more than a thousand feet above the ground in a zip-line tour with Bootleg Canyon Flightlines. Located in Boulder City, the drive is about 35 minutes from the Las Vegas Strip. Cost is $149.

For a free day of fun, head outdoors to Red Rock Canyon or Valley of Fire. For a romantic outdoor experience, try the gondola ride at Lake Las Vegas.

All aboard: A train ride through Boulder City

If you’ve never ridden in a historic train before, the Nevada Southern Railway in Boulder City takes its passengers on a seven-mile roundtrip ride to Railroad Pass casino and back. This attraction is only available on the weekends, so make some time to go in the early morning or afternoon. The cost is $8, with discounts for seniors and children.

Plenty of indoor attractions to enjoy in Vegas

Do you have the gift of solving mysteries? Do you always figure out who the killer is before the end of an episode on “CSI?” CSI: The Experience at MGM Grand gives you the chance to become the detective. Tickets are $30 and the attraction runs every 10 minutes from 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.

Fans of Tony Hawk can try out the new video game, “Tony Hawk: RIDE” before its release on Nov. 17. The free game demo will be available at Quiksilver inside Miracle Mile Shops on Friday and Sunday, 2 – 7 p.m. and Saturday and Monday, 1 – 7 p.m. The motion sensing skateboard that allows players to control the action with their feet.

Sports

Timberlake tees off for a good cause

Grammy and Emmy award-winning artist Justin Timberlake hosts The Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in Las Vegas Oct. 11-18 at the Tournament Players Club (TPC) Summerlin, 1700 Village Center Circle.

More than 100 PGA Tour professionals will compete for a $4.2 million purse (with a winner’s share of $756,000) at this celebrity-studded event.

Halloween

Ghoulish guards and spooky inmates at Zombi Precinct

The Zombie Precinct comes to New York-New York beginning Oct 8. The hotel’s Brooklyn Bridge transforms into a haunted zombie precinct filled with ghoulish, frightening creatures. For $20, fright seekers are invited to enter the haunted precinct and brave a dark maze of grotesque looking guards and spooky inmates.

Try not to scream: After Dark at Madame Tussauds

If you’re spending a long weekend in Vegas, check out Madame Tussauds’ After Dark attraction, beginning Oct. 13. If you ever wondered what happens after the lights go out, find out at Madame Tussauds After Dark. Do restless spirits haunt the halls at the wax attraction? Do the statues come alive at night? This event takes place at Madame Tussauds’ SCREAM!: One Way Out from 10 p.m. – 1 a.m. The cost is $20. (Note: The attraction’s haunted attraction, SCREAM!: One Way Out, is available year-round.)

Get your scare on at Fright Dome at Circus Circus

Be sure to check out Fright Dome at Circus-Circus. Get the scare of a lifetime with two new haunted houses carrying the theme of the horror movie “Saw.” In addition to these haunted houses, you’ll also experience five acres of ghoulish fun, including extreme scare zones, rides, eight different freak shows, demons descending from the ceiling and much more. This week, Fright Dome will be open Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 7 p.m. – midnight. The frighteningly fun attraction is available through Halloween. Tickets are $34.95.

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