My brother called a week ago to let me know that one of his favorite singers, Michael Franti, was coming to Las Vegas at Brooklyn Bowl May 18. Brooklyn Bowl is located on The Linq Promenade just off the Las Vegas Strip.
I knew of Franti and though I hated to do it, I cancelled my reservation at Kelly Clinton’s Sit-In and bought tickets to Franti. I had the choice of standing room tickets or tickets with seating “upstairs.” We’re not young. We paid the price for upstairs.
Our tickets said the Brooklyn Bowl opened for seating at 7 p.m. but didn’t list a show time. We assumed 8 p.m. and were correct. We planned to arrive early so we could walk the Promenade, having not visited that area for several years. We parked in the public parking area ($18).
Once we were on the Promenade itself, we saw lots of retail and dining choices and plenty of customers, most of them young, many wearing shorts (the temperature was in the 90s but with a breeze) and many wearing backpacks or crossbody bags. We may have been the most senior folks on the street.
I was surprised at the many offerings on the Promenade. Restaurants featured everything from pizza or fish & chips to Guy Fieri’s comfort food and Mexican specialties. One of the restaurants had live music and many were ready with outside eating. Drink offers were everywhere, with many of the visitors walking the street with their drinks in cups. One offering I hadn’t seen before was a small serve-yourself kiosk offering slices of cake from “Cake Boss” Buddy Valastro. No customers were buying as we passed by, but dessert awaited.
A store called Razer was ready to host avid video gamers, and another store offered (for #40 for the first ‘trip’ and $10 thereafter) virtual reality journeys not to be forgotten.
With regard to shopping, we saw everything from bath salts to “Salty Crew” brand clothing.
Professional entertainment can be had from magician Matt Franco and comedians at the Jimmy Kimmel Comedy Club. Photos with great-looking Chippendale dancers are available as are some of the other acts booked at Brooklyn Bowl. (Yes, you can go bowling at Brooklyn Bowl, too.)
The Fly LINQ Zipline was not operating during our walk, but the High Roller Observation Wheel did seem to be making its slow journey. To fill in a few extra minutes, we walked into The Flamingo Hotel and asked directions to the Flamingo Gardens. I had been in the gardens before and saw lots of wildlife then, but Thursday only a few ducks were part of the scenery. Nonetheless, the waterfalls were interesting and we noticed lots of photos were being taken of the garden’s water features.
As for us? After our walk, we returned to Brooklyn Bowl, were given two wrist bands (the second band indicated we had paid for VIP seating), and we climbed some three sets of stairs to get to our seats. The seats were comfortable, but clearly if we wanted to see the stage we would have to stand and lean on the rail in front of us. We knew we would have a hour’s wait for the show, so we were glad to have seats.
At 8 p.m. the show started with a rock band that took full advantage of the sound system. We stayed in our seats for this group and actually could “feel” the sound coming up our bench (and our rear ends.) The sound was loud–too loud for us old folks, but we stayed through the half-hour show and the half-hour break before the headliner appeared. The crowd seemed sparse in the beginning, but as the 9 p.m show time got closer, the standing room crowd downstairs grew and grew.
Michael Franti was great. This tall good-looking guy sings of things like sunshine, love, hard work, family and peace–all good things. Franti is a powerhouse, a reggae hip rocker/folk singer, He asks the audience to wave their hands and sing along. He goes into the audience and sings. I saw no bodyguards. The young crowd seemed to love everything he did as did we. Early in the show, a women who had obviously used her time before 9 p.m to order drinks threw her arms around my gentleman friend and me and said we were cute (again, translation: old). Later we were sitting down and the same lady approached and wanted me to join her in a dance.
To escape our “fan,” we then decided to go downstairs and join the standing crowd, a view of Franti which we much preferred to the balcony. Had we known the ropes at Brooklyn Bowl, we should have bought the standing room tickets and shown up at 9 p.m.
So I took photos and a few of them are below. The Linq Promenade seems to appeal to a young crowd mostly, but we old folks had a good time, too.