When Matt Zeto of Dallas isn't pocketing $80,000 a year on the professional video-game circuit, he's taking on wannabe pros on the nationwide Game Riot tour. The traveling arcade of 70 gaming stations -- including Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory and Star Wars: Republic Commando -- stops in Cleveland this weekend.
And the 22-year-old Zeto -- who goes by the gamer tag of Zyos -- is challenging anyone to beat him at Halo, in which troopers are thrust into a hostile alien world. "Anybody that beats him gets 100 bucks on the spot and a professional gaming contract," says Matt Ringel, who started the video-game competition in 2002.
If you don't think you're pro material, you can check out soon-to-be-released games -- like the new basketball and hockey simulations from 2K Sports targeted at folks between 14 and 34 years old. "These players spend more time with games than listening to music or going to the movies," says Ringel. "We wanted to create an environment where people can try these unreleased games. It's just a great, cool event." Game Riot is from 7 p.m. to midnight Sunday at the House of Blues, 308 Euclid Avenue. Tickets are $12, $10 in advance, available by calling 216-523-2583. -- Cris Glaser
Funny lady Mo'Nique brings plus-size laughs.
It started as a dare from her brother. When she was only 16 years old, Mo'Nique went onstage at a comedy club in Baltimore. She was such a hit, she began looking into becoming a full-time comic. She quit her day job at the phone company and began appearing on all the big TV comedy showcases -- Showtime at the Apollo, Def Comedy Jam, BET's Comic View. She then landed the role that made her famous (well, famous if you watch UPN): Nikki Parker on Moesha, which spun off into her own show, The Parkers; it ran for five seasons on the network. Recently, Mo'Nique starred in the ensemble movies Hair Show and Soul Plane. Her latest project is Fat Chance, a reality show currently casting for the Oxygen Network, in which 10 full-figured models compete for the, um, big prize. Mo'Nique performs at the Improv (2000 Sycamore Street) at 8 and 10:15 p.m. Friday through Sunday. Tickets are $36, available by calling 216-696-4677. -- P.F. Wilson
Turn to Stone
Drag queen entertains and drives a bus!
The next time you leave the driving to Greyhound, the dude behind the wheel could be veteran female illusionist Krystal Stone. The 37-year-old Vermilion native has been driving a bus around the Buckeye State for five years. But since 1993, Stone has been performing high-energy dance numbers in gay bars from Cleveland to Columbus. "I'm from the old school, where we all wear big costumes and hair, and perform elaborate production numbers," says Stone, who hosts the Miss Cleveland Gay Pride Pageant this weekend. "I don't believe in performing a show unless I'm put together and prepared." Stone performs at 10 p.m. Sunday at Bounce, 2814 Detroit Avenue. Admission is $5; call 216-357-2997. -- Cris Glaser
SAT 6/11 Environmental Elvis has left the building. He'll be on the shore at Saturday's Welcome to Summer Bonfire Beach Party, which includes marshmallow-roasting, Frisbee-tossing, and Double-E (imitator Dave Pyle), singing such songs as "Are You Recycling Tonight?" "The other impersonators hate me because I'm doing a novelty Elvis," notes Pyle. "Some of these other folks are very, very serious." The free party is from 7 to 10 p.m. at Edgewater Park (6500 Cleveland Memorial Shoreway); call 216-881-8141. -- Lucy McKernan