Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2016 | 6:02 p.m.
One of the world’s largest bikini pageants, Miss Hooters International, will celebrate its 20th anniversary in May at the Palms. One hundred gorgeous girls will be selected from more than 18,000 Hooters employees who work in one of the 400 locations.
Don Jet, managing partner of the world’s largest Hooters bar at the Palms, has secured the rights to stage the pageant for two years. One Las Vegas resident from his three valley locations will be selected for the pageant after preliminary competitions at Palms Pool leading up to the May 23 contest.
Last year’s winner, Meagan Pastorchik of South Carolina, won the pageant after placing second the year before. Don also tells me that he’s installing the world’s largest indoor TV screens at Hooters in time for Super Bowl 50 and will keep them in place for the pageant.
GOLF MOVE? It’s a wonderful Wicked Whisper & Racy Rumor today. The Rio, on the heels of opening “Rock of Ages” on Monday night, is getting more rock and roll (all night) centric!
I’m told by a reliable source that KISS By Monster Mini Golf is moving to the Rio for Memorial Day Weekend from its quarters opposite the Hard Rock Hotel.
MAY MUSIC: Two music awards nearly clashed, but now they’re a week apart. The 2016 Billboard Music Awards will air Sunday, May 22, from MGM Grand. Last year’s big winner was Taylor Swift, who won six awards on the ABC telecast.
One week earlier is Sally Steele’s Vegas Rocks! Magazine Hair Metal Awards honoring the Twisted Sister (Dee Snider, Jay Jay French, Eddie Ojeda and Mark Mendoza). Sally and Nick Hawk (“Gigolos”) will co-host the awards at Casablanca Events Center at Eastside Cannery.
Twisted Sister is celebrating its 40th anniversary and will be onstage for the all-star celebrity jam finale with honorees and participants.
TOP 100: Open Table released its 100 Best Restaurants in America ranking today for 2015. The list ranks the best of 20,000 restaurants from more than 5 million reviews in all states.
The only Las Vegas restaurant selected for recognition was Michael’s at South Point. St. Francis Winery in Santa Rosa, Calif., was No. 1.
‘RESTAURANT STARTUP’: Las Vegas restaurateur and hospitality consultant Elizabeth Blau joins “Restaurant Startup” stars Joe Bastianich and Tim Love for three episodes of the nine-week CNBC series starting Wednesday as a new investor at the Deal Table.
Elizabeth hosts a screening party of her TV debut Wednesday at her Andiron Steak + Sea in Downtown Summerlin.
CONGRATULATIONS: Choreographer and producer Jennifer Romas, who stars as lead dancer in her topless show “Sexxy” at Westgate Las Vegas, celebrates its first anniversary tonight with a champagne and cake after-party.
“It’s all a dream come true,” Jennifer told me. “We had just three weeks to get the show up and running 12 months ago. Everybody said it couldn’t be done, but we proved them wrong.
“We opened on time, and we’re still here a year later and planning many more years at the Westgate. Dance is passion, passion is life, and we lived our dream and made it come true when everything was against us.”
Westgate owner David Siegel said: “We are looking forward to many more years of success for Jennifer and her team of performers at Westgate.”
David also wins applause for his latest acquisition, a Pigeon Forge, Tenn., hotel he’s renaming Wild Bear Inn. It’s the closest property to Dolly Parton’s theme park Dollywood and Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
David owns two resorts 15 minutes away in Gatlinburg, and the new property takes David to 29 resorts with more than 13,000 villas.
NEW LEAD ACTRESS: My good friend singer, actress and entertainer Maren Wade, who writes her weekly column “Confessions of a Showgirl,” in our sister publication Las Vegas Weekly, has joined “50 Shades! The Parody” at Bally’s in time for its first anniversary next month.
“I’m having the time of my life as Anastasia Steele,” said Maren. “Every night, I play this funny, quirky, innocent character who becomes the S&M slave to mogul Christian Grey. It really is a hilarious, naughty satire.”
GUINNESS WORLD RECORD: Comedy magician Adam London, who stars in “Laughternoon” at The D Las Vegas, has achieved a new Guinness World Record with more than 20,000 glow sticks that end to end is nearly four miles.
The bid was recorded at our Brookman Elementary School and represented the number of books read there by students for the past five months, 21,178, beating a primary school in Australia that held the previous record of 9,800 glow sticks.
‘MONDAYS DARK’: “Rock of Ages” star Mark Shunock kicked off the first of his 2016 “Mondays Dark” charity concerts with Las Vegas entertainer volunteers performing at Vinyl in the Hard Rock Hotel. This year’s debut show, with songs from “Anchorman,” benefited our Clark County Injured Police Officers Fund.
THE PARK OPENING DATE: MGM Resorts International will debut its dynamic park, dining and entertainment district that links the new 20,000-seat T-Mobile Arena to Monte Carlo and New York-New York on April 4, it was announced today. Check out Las Vegas Sun colleague J.D. Morris’ story posted today.
Robin Leach of “Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous” fame has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past 15 years giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
Follow Robin Leach on Twitter at Twitter.com/Robin_Leach.
Follow Las Vegas Sun Entertainment + Luxury Senior Editor Don Chareunsy on Twitter at Twitter.com/VDLXEditorDon.
The D Las Vegas is the new revved-up name for a longtime downtown Las Vegas hotel, Fitzgeralds, which had been in operation since 1987.
Owner Derek Stevens rebranded and refurbished the hotel in fall 2012 to give it a motor city theme, using the nickname of his beloved city, Detroit, for the name of the new hotel. He also brought in two restaurant favorites from Detroit: American Coney Island and Joe Vicari's Andiamo Italian Steakhouse.
The property features 638 remodeled contemporary rooms and suites. The unique two-level casino included slots and table games. Dancing dealers are featured on the first floor. And the second floor transports guests back in time to old-school Vegas with its Vintage Casino.
The casino also features the LONGBAR, the longest bar in Nevada, where sports fans can watch games on big screen TVs. Outside on Fremont Street, D Bar invites guests and passerby alike to enjoy refreshing frozen libations and specialty cocktails as talented, trickster bartenders send bottles and glasses flying through the air.
The Showroom at the D features the interactive comedy show, "Marriage Can Be Murder," where guests can be part of the mystery.
Carnival lasts all year at the Rio. With a float occasionally passing overhead and dropping beads while feathered dancers fire up the gamblers below, the Rio tries to keep its 120,000-square foot casino jumping with excitement. Special Brazilian mixed-drinks are also served throughout the casino. The hotel suites tend to be larger than similar priced rooms on the Strip and many offer excellent views with floor to ceiling windows.
The Rio offers some quality shows like "Penn & Teller" and "Chippendales." Many come to the Rio for the nightlife at the VooDoo Lounge, located on the 51st floor, or McFadden's Irish Pub on the casino level.
Others come for a bit relaxation at the Rio Spa or pool area and still others come to shop at the hotel's 60,000 square feet of shops. In each of these endeavors, the Rio attempts to make the experience a bit more fun and spontaneous.
The Rio also offers guests a variety of dining choices from all-American food at the All-American Bar & Grille to Gaylord India Restaurant for something a little spicier and even Carnival World Buffet for the indecisive.