Sunday, July 7, 2013 | 9:06 p.m.
Editor’s Note: While Robin Leach is on the East Coast and heading to London before his traditional summer vacation under the Tuscan sun in Italy — plus, the Amalfi Coast this year — many of our Strip personalities have stepped forward in his absence to pen their own words of wisdom. We continue with photographer Denise Truscello, who is regularly featured on our pages here with her incredible celebrity photos of all the stars in Las Vegas.
Life is about relationships and experiences. That’s why I love what I do. I document life.
It’s 4 a.m. Monday at Electric Daisy Carnival Las Vegas 2013, and we are having the time of our lives. It’s the third and final night of the festival, and we know what’s about to happen — and we can’t wait. On the Kinetic Field stage, the huge owl spreads his wings and rolls his eyes while Night Owl Experience pumps the crowd. I’m photographing our group. My eyes never leave Pasquale Rotella and Holly Madison, though.
I’m pretending hard to act cool. It’s not easy. Pasquale is calm as Holly and he are leaning against the railing of the Marquee lounge with the stage and the moon as a backdrop. When is it going to happen? I thought it was at 4? Then 4:05, 4:07, 4:10 … OK, they are leaving. We all walk out to the golf carts outside the lounge area. There are about 20 of us.
But wait, they are supposed to go it alone. Josh Strickland tells Holly that we are all going to find some food, and we’ll meet up later. We wait for them to leave. DJ Afrojack drives Holly and Pasquale; as they pull away, we watch them.
The group also includes Todd DuBail, Tanya Popovich, Tom Recine, Mike Snedegar, Alex Acuna, James Garrett, Laura Croft, Sophia Monica, Brandon Roque, Tara Palsha and more. We head over to the Ferris wheel. Thank God it cooled off. We find Wide Awake Art Car; it looks like a boat on wheels with a DJ, of course, and we all get in.
Pasquale’s mom Irene, his uncle and his sister are there, the glasses are passed, the champagne is poured, and we are ready. We wait next to the Ferris wheel, which was stopped for a long time. We all know what is going to happen up there, all except Holly. We are jumping around to the music, my eyes locked on the stairs up to our party boat. I need the first moment.
And here it is. Holly and Pasquale climb in, and they have the biggest smiles I’ve ever seen. Of course I’m still shooting as we all rush them with hugs and congratulations. He officially proposed!
Finally, someone asks to see the ring, and it is gorgeous. I won’t talk about the size or the special things about it. Designed by Pasquale, it’s beautifully personal. It’s up to them to give the special details. I will say Holly looked as stunning as always, but this night she sparkles as much as her ring and is as graceful as a butterfly in her dress.
Everyone is laughing, dancing and hugging. A great group of family and friends of which I’m blessed to be a part. I’m photographing the moment, and it’s a truly magical one. We drive around the festival as the day breaks.
The music from the Kinetic Field stage and crowd had the same energy as day one, but, like everything else in the world, it has to come to an end. The music fades with the loud, deep words, “This was EDC. See you next year.” Wide Awake Art Car is still pumping hard. DJ Fabian Campos is killing it.
The crowd moves from the now-quiet Kinetic Field stage over to us screaming out “Holly!” and “Pasquale!” And reaching up and giving them their homemade bead bracelets: “We love you!”
There was nothing but love, and I captured it all.
Check our other guest column today from celebrity chef Barry S. Dakake of N9NE Steakhouse at the Palms, then on Monday look for our guest columns from Flamingo headliner comedian George Wallace and new “Defending the Caveman” solo actor Chris Allen headlining at Harrah’s. Other guest columnists this week include Terry Fator, Jon Taffer, Louis Prima Jr., James Davis and Jaymes Vaughan, Antonio Esfandiari and “Rock of Ages” cast members.
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
Follow Robin Leach on Twitter at Twitter.com/Robin_Leach.
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Follow VDLX Editor Don Chareunsy on Twitter at Twitter.com/VDLXEditorDon.