Pop culture, entertainment & all things Fresno

Weekend Rewind: Ohhhhhhhh Drama!

Vartanian Booking Photo.JPG

Here’s a recap of a weekend dripping with drama. Tell us about your weekend adventures in the comments.

I took on a last-minute DJ gig at Palomino’s, which wouldn’t have been all that noteworthy except the owner of Red Zone Sports Grill showed up to speak with me during my set. He was calm and apologetic, saying he had never actually heard the now-controversial ad until things erupted last week. Overall, there wasn’t as much tension as you’d expect — except for when his nephew came and told me I should do my “research” because Red Zone has two gay employees. I shut that down like Liz Lemon.

The big news on Saturday was that local businessman Kirk Vartanian (aka the guy who opened The Edge) had been arrested on Friday night. Vartanian (pictured above) even got a special Saturday press conference from Fresno PD to talk about the allegations of assault and felony domestic violence.

The Bee’s Tim Sheehan wrote a pretty thorough story on the arrest. Vartanian reached out to ABC-30 from jail to tell his side of the story, which included this choice quote: “I’m trying to help the City of Fresno. If I am going to keep getting negative things happening to me, I am not going to help Granite Park.”


My in-laws were in town (no drama there), so I spent Sunday morning leading a Fresno tour — showing them around the Tower and Downtown. It’s always fun for me to see outsiders’ perspectives on Fresno. I think they liked it.

And now for the Fresno Firsts files: At the end of our tour we made a stop at Simonian Farms, which was a first for me. Totally rad place, not only with yummy food but all kinds of cool vintage stuff, from bikes and tractors to old signs and posters. And can I just say that the yogurt covered raisins we bought are crack.

What did you do this weekend? Cool events? Discover a new restaurant? Find a smart way to beat the heat? Fill us in.

Responses to "Weekend Rewind: Ohhhhhhhh Drama!"

Heather says:

So it’s okay to hate on gays as long as you employ them in your restaurant, and it’s okay to beat up women as long as you employ them in your nightclub.

*Filed away in memory for future use*

Mr. Incognito says:

Yeah about “Helping Fresno”… I think he is, one conviction at a time! The best part about his story is the fact some rich lady has been “LOANING” him money. Come on dude, fighting over a $100k watch? I’ll fight over food, family, and maybe sports (never physically of course but then again, there was this one time) but DAMN, that’s a $100k large!

The question EVERYONE has to be asking is how did the transfer of Granite Park go from one crook to another alleged crooked person, was there an official transfer, or who at City Hall is allowing this nonsense to continue?

I digress, if you haven’t had dinner at Veni’s before, do yourself a favor and try it now!

Apparently you didn’t go Max Payne upside the nephew’s head, crack a .45 and tell her, UH ER I mean him, “I’ll scratch the Hell out of you son”!

Tony Blanco says:

Dear Mike,

Glad you featured the Kirk story. My last shout out at the Granite Park mess. MS Mayor, City Council, Chief Dyer, Someone shut this place down. Please arrest all the crooks who have ripped off the City for money (5 Million) as well as all the lies, monies ripped off for construction, workers being cheated pay, insurance fraud, and every other crime that is attached to Barbis and Kirk.

This is now a real public embrassment about how if you have a bad ass attuide with a little money you can continue to rip people off.

It read he owes monies to a casino in LV and has warrant for his arrest. How did he get even a temp. liquir license for one night. Damm can we all just do what we want in this world and get away with it! I guess if you BS folks and spread some money around you can…until the rest of the bills show up


Solitaire says:

I ran away from the heat to hit the Big Sandy campground for the weekend, we also hiked Fresno Dome and saw the entire valley from the top of the peak! It was awesome!!! Mountains = cool!

ed says:

apparently i carried a gas can around online to start the weekend. and today i’m trying to carry a waterhose but i’m not sure what’s coming out so far.

but just to publicly say it, and i mean this in complete sincerity, i do love the beehive and all it brings to fresno. to be more specific, i value mike oz and the tireless work that he does. i honestly believe that he is the best reporter the bee has, and i don’t intend for that to demean any other bee reporter. i continue to admit that i misstated something about mike in another thread and i in no way wish to impugn his journalistic ability or credibility.

Stephen says:

Speaking of Liz Lemon, at the end of the hilarious clip you posted, Tracy Morgan is giving his speech to the HS grads. He points out the one gay guy and gets a fun response.

Here’s the gay guy in all his nekkidness doing what my friend Sara Benincasa calls her ‘Tub Talks with Sara B:’

She’s had Margaret Cho and Neil Gaiman sittin’ in her tub lately, and does fun things in her interviews. Mostly I just wish for her to one day be nekkid indeed with them, but that’s another thing altogether.

(Sara is nationally known for her Sarah Palin impersonation videos, fyi)

Howard says:

Mea maxima culpa! Penance: Give Mike a blumpkin.

Turdle Hater says:

Jimmy Martinez… I really need to say I told you so?

ed says:

no thanks, i’ll stick with this.

Claire says:

I actually got out and about… and listened to Mike Oz add a little spice to Palaminos, had a couple of “Frou frou” drinks with the girls and woke up way to early to help with an estate sale.

BTW, Mike was very nice and I liked him instantly, he reminds me of my brother.

Monti says:

Taking this in another direction who does Kirk’s lips they look really vuluptious.

Mike Oz says:

Finally! I’m surprised it’s taken this long.

brodiemash says:

Maybe cause people don’t wanna get whacked.

Heather says:

I was totally thinking the same thing.

Well, not really. My reaction was more like “Ew.”

Claire says:

Ok… admit it, your first reaction was “Why is there a muppet on the news?” then “Ewwww”… and then “WTF”…

Or was that just me?

Brodie has a good point… can you imagine the last thing you see in life is that face??

Monti says:

Bring it on! I’m scrapy.

mikeV says:

When is the Fresno D.A. going to drop the hammer on Milt? He’s laying low now that the attention is not on him! Plus Kirk could use a familiar face for a cell mate. Im sure Sammy Hagar is having a good chuckle out of all this and a sigh of relief he got out when he did. Hopefully justice will be served and Sammy can celebrate(With everybody else)
with a couple shots of Tequila and a big bowl of TURTLE SOUP.