Saturday, June 27, 2009 | 8:29 a.m.
It’s not that the 29-year-old former reality show personality and “Dancing with the Stars” contestant hates her new gig, or is exhausted after just a few days on the job; instead, she needed the day off to attend her former “Girls Next Door” co-star’s wedding.
Kendra Wilkinson, 24, will marry Philadelphia Eagle Hank Baskett, 26, at the Holmby Hills estate where she and Madison once lived -- the Playboy Mansion -- later this evening.
The girls’ former boyfriend, 83-year-old Playboy mogul Hugh Hefner, is expected to give the bride away to the wide receiver during today’s nuptials.
After a late night that saw Madison give two performances, then host the Friday night party at Privé, the blonde bombshell hopped the first flight to L.A. from Las Vegas this morning.
She will be a one of the bridesmaid’s in Wilkinson’s wedding, though she’s not sure who will be escorting her down the aisle.
“Probably a football player or something,” she guessed.
The third former “Girl Next Door,” Bridget Marquardt, will also be a bridesmaid during today’s ceremony, along with three of Wilkinson’s friends (two with Playboy ties, one without) and a producer from “The Girls Next Door.”
Today will be the first time Madison has been at the Mansion for quite a while.
She said “it’s been months” since she last visited and she didn’t know what to expect.
“It will just be interesting,” she predicted – especially seeing as Wilkinson and Baskett controlled the invitations instead of Hefner or his handlers.
“I think it will be an all-Kendra guest list,” she said.
Footage of today’s ceremony will be included in a special episode of Wilkinson and Baskett’s new reality show, “Kendra,” which premiered earlier this month on E!.
Madison said she bought the couple “a bunch of stuff” from their gift registry but also picked up a little special something for the bride while soaring at 30,000 or so feet.
“She’s always talking about a hot dog toaster that you get out of SkyMall,” she said, “So I got her one of those, too.”
The soon-to-be-married couple have been engaged for seven-and-a-half months and were last in Las Vegas during Memorial Day Weekend, when they hosted an afternoon pool party at Wet Republic at MGM Grand.
More recently, it was revealed just two weeks ago that the couple is expecting their first child in December.
Madison had to miss the wedding shower due to commitments with "Peepshow" rehearsals but hopes to throw Wilkinson a special baby shower to make up for it.
“I want to throw a Vegas-style baby shower for her,” she said.
Madison will hop the first flight back to Las Vegas tomorrow morning and will return to the Planet Hollywood stage later that night.
She began what will be a minimum three-month stint as part of “Peepshow” on Monday. She reprised the role of “Bo Peep” from former "DWTS" contestant and Playboy model Kelly Monaco.
With the exception of today’s pre-approved leave of absence, Madison and the rest of the topless cast appear in the production six nights a week, Thursday through Tuesday.
Melissa Arseniuk writes about Las Vegas entertainment and celebrity events. She can be reached at 702-948-7823 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.