Monday, Nov. 15, 2010 | 5:39 p.m.
It was a weekend-long birthday celebration for 90210 star Jessica Lowndes. Her 22nd celebration festivities began with dinner at Social House in MGM CityCenter’s Crystals with a group of 12 friends at Executive Chef Joe Elevado’s restaurant. Jessica finished dinner with a tower of chocolate chip cupcakes.
Wearing a sexy blue dress by Catherine Malandrino and red strappy heels by Brian Atwood, she arrived at Pure in Caesars Palace at midnight and posed for red carpet photos. Once at her VIP table, she danced all night long with her friends, and even kicked off her shoes and danced barefoot all over the stage.
The TV darling was surprised with a two-tier pink and black birthday cake while her newly released single “Falling in Love” played in the club. Friends sang Happy Birthday with clubgoers joining in as she blew out the candles. Mindfreak magician Criss Angel and Dexter star David Zaya also were there.
Last night before leaving town, Jessica had one more celebration. She and her gal pals dined at Ago in the Hard Rock Hotel and then partied at Vanity, where Jessica hopped into the DJ booth for photos with DJ Five.
*Entertainment executive Bill Edwards, who produced the recent Cheap Trick’s Sgt. Pepper Live at the Paris, donated $200,000 to the Veterans Airlift Command during the four-day Tribute to the Troops visit for Veterans Day. The charity provides free air transportation to Wounded Warriors, veterans and their families for medical and other purposes through a national network of volunteer aircraft owners and pilots.
*Several weeks ago, we first told you of major headline name shakeups on The Strip, and the first, with Rita Rudner’s move to The Venetian from Harrah’s, has been announced. One other comedy star is left to vacate a showroom after a veteran music group moves in. Still to come as we first told you: Two beloved singers who call Las Vegas home will land two other theaters, one on and the other just off The Strip.
*Tomorrow marks the start of the four-day, 1,061 mile “granddaddy of all desert races” -- the 43rd SCORE Baja 1000 from Ensenada to La Paz in Mexico. MGM CityCenter chief Bobby Baldwin will co-pilot with his son B.J. Baldwin in a Chevy Silverado truck starting in the #3 slot. Members of our hometown Herbst family start in the 24th and 26th positions. NASCAR driver Robbie Gordon is in the #10 slot. Pat Dean of Las Vegas is in #15 position, and tattooed headline sensation Jesse James is in the 27th starting position.
*Congratulations to 17-year-old Ashley Megan Brown, who was crowned Miss Nevada Teen USA, while preschool director Sarah Chapman, 26, was crowned Miss Nevada USA to represent our Silver State at Donald Trump’s 60th annual Miss USA Pageant at Planet Hollywood next spring. Both ladies are from Las Vegas, and more than 30 contestants battled for the titles at College of Southern Nevada yesterday in swimsuit, evening gown and interview for five judges.
*Motley Crue frontman and hometown idol Vince Neil will lead the rockers out on their 30th anniversary tour next year teamed up with Bret Michaels, who will be celebrating Poison’s 25th anniversary on the same global schedule.
*Judging starts today through Nov. 24 for the annual Nightclub & Bar Awards, which last year resulted in 14 winners from 230 coast-to-coast nominations. Once again, Nightclub and Bar Magazine has invited me to be one of the judges, and this year for the first time, there will be a category for Dayclub of the Year and a Las Vegas Nightclub Awards division of its own nine categories, established in recognition of our city’s esteemed pleasure playground.
*Today is the 60th anniversary of the Senate Special Committee to Investigate Organized Crime in Interstate Commerce led by U.S. Sen. Estes Kefauver. It was the seventh in a series of 14 nationwide hearings in the Las Vegas building that will house the Las Vegas Museum of Organized Crime & Law Enforcement, aka The Mob Museum. The 2-year investigation heard more than 800 witnesses and accelerated the national debate on organized crime. Historians credit the hearings with cementing Las Vegas as the gaming capital of the country since the crackdown on illegal gambling that followed the hearings drove gambling operators to Nevada. Mayor Oscar Goodman, who was a defense lawyer for some of the alleged mobsters, was at this morning’s ceremony, as was Senior Editor John Katsilometes.
Actress Amy Smart was all over town this weekend with boyfriend Carter Oosterhouse from HGTV. They watched Cirque du Soleil’s Ka at MGM Grand, dined at Strip House in Planet Hollywood and watched Peepshow, where they posed for a photo with the cast. Actresses and sisters Aly and A.J. Michalka also watched Ka to celebrate mom Carrie’s birthday after dinner at Beso in Crystals. They also watched Love at The Mirage. Rita Rudner and her daughter Molly, 8, snacked on popcorn while watching Love. Siegfried Fischbacher visited Criss Angel after watching Believe at the Luxor.
Boxing champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. stopped by Tao in The Venetian to help his assistant celebrate a birthday after their birthday dinner. Rihanna’s brother Rorrey Fenty celebrated his 21st birthday at Vanity. Scrubs star Donald Faison and longtime girlfriend CaCee Cobb ate at Pink Taco and Rare 120 in the Hard Rock Hotel during their weekend of craps. Kelly Clarkson celebrated her sister Alyssa’s 35th birthday in a large group at Moon in the Palms. They also hit Thunder From Down Under at Excalibur.
Boston Red Sox players Jonathan Papelbon, Dustin Pedroia and Jacoby Ellsbury celebrated an early 30th birthday for Jonathan with their wives and girlfriends at Blush in the Wynn. UFC fighter Clay Guida dined at N9NE Steakhouse in the Palms, while Urijah Faber celebrated his win at Moon. Comedy actor Bryan Callen was at Nove Italiano in the Palms after his Playboy Comedy Club appearances, while hip hop artist Todd Shaw, better known as Too Short, performed for the TV series Bachelorette Party filming at The Playboy Club. Antonio Ballatore, Season 4 champion of HGTV’s Design Star, dined at First Food & Bar in the Palazzo before a night out with friends on The Strip.
The book Forgotten Man recalls how Circus Circus chieftain Bill Bennett brought Middle America to Las Vegas and is launched at Piero’s at the Convention Center. Author Jack Sheehan and my friend Diane Bennett, Bill’s daughter, will attend and speak. Top Chef Masters finalist Rick Moonen hosts celebrity Chef Jennifer Carroll of Top Chef in a four-course dinner to raise funds for the James Beard Foundation at his RM Seafood in Mandalay Bay. It’s the seventh year of the Celebrity Chef Tour and the first time at Rick’s restaurant. Rap star YG performs his “Toot It & Boot It” at Jet in The Mirage.
We’ve got the rundown of country singers and comedians set for the debut of the American Country Awards broadcasting from Las Vegas on Dec. 6 with Toby Keith, Rascal Flatts, Jeff Dunham, Lady Antebellum, Blake Shelton and Reba McEntire. Plus, G2E gets underway at our Convention Center focusing on online gaming and supersized slot machines.
Follow Robin Leach on Twitter at Twitter.com/Robin_Leach.
Follow Vegas DeLuxe on Twitter at Twitter.com/vegasdeluxe.
Follow VDLX Editor Don Chareunsy on Twitter at Twitter.com/VDLXEditorDon.