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Fifth annual BransonFest Out West proves highly successful; Plans already underway for sixth annual
Featured Photo
Elvis Tribute Artist Cole is seen with a fan during the annual BransonFest Out West at the CasaBlanca Resort in Mesquite.


By Mike Henle

MESQUITE – Sue Arko of Free Spirit Vacations is back home in Gilbert, Ariz. After presenting her fifth annual BransonFest Out West at the CasaBlanca Resort she’s happy with what she has heard about the event.
BransonFest dominated the CasaBlanca Feb. 3-5 bringing with it a unique combination of comedy, folk, variety and 50s Rock ‘N Roll.
From Harley Worthit’s comedy to Rich Vickers and former construction worker turned Elvis Tribute Artist ERock and several others, BransonFest did its job of making people feel at home in this city about 80 miles north of Las Vegas.
Proof was in the pudding especially considering the enthusiasm of the crowds along with the responses from all involved when the event was concluded.
          Every promotion has its share of challenges, but the latest BransonFest will go down in history as one of the best since the first event christened the CasaBlanca in 2010.
When all is said and done, there is a special feeling of satisfaction knowing that all went well.
“It’s just went so smooth,” said Arko who has been in the travel and event business since her first show in Laughlin in 1981. “Nobody complained about anything and that’s simply an element that is proof in the pudding.”
The patriotic part of the show on the third and final night seemed to generate the most response.
“People love honoring their country,” said Arko. “Rick, ERok and Cole were tremendous with their tributes to Elvis. In addition, Cole had a rendition of Johnny Cash and Conway Twitty.”
The sixth annual BransonFest Out West will return Feb. 9-12 next year and Arko expects good results again.
“I’m looking forward to next year’s show,” she said. “Because the Super Bowl is in Phoenix next year, we had to back up the show one week in order to ensure motor coaches are available to bring guests to Mesquite.”
Arko is back at work preparing for Swing Time Salute, a Bob Hope and Andrews Sister USO type of event March 18-20 at Boulder Station in Las Vegas.
“This particular show is a lot like the Patriotic feature in Mesquite,” Arko explained. “We have some excellent entertainers and our first show in 2013 drew a very good crowd.”
         For further information, contact Arko at 888-278-9844 or email her at





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