Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013 | 11:07 p.m.
Whitney Houston wax figure at Madame Tussaud’s
Sexy showgirls from Las Vegas productions and nightclubs are featured in the 2013 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue out today, and it’s a simple and scintillating contest created by our Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority -- but you have to wade through dozens of gorgeous bikini beauties to search for Sports Illustrated model Jarah Mariano. Once you find and click on her in the digital edition, she’ll let you enter the contest for a super-prize.
Our local beauties include Terry Fator’s wife Taylor Makakoa from their show at The Mirage; Melody Sweets and Angel Porrino from “Absinthe” at Caesars Palace; Lorena Peril, Tracey, Yesi, Ashton, Desiree and magician Murray Sawchuck’s wife Chloe from “Fantasy” at the Luxor; and 2011 Playmate of the Year Claire Sinclair, who is about to debut in “Pin Up” at Stratosphere.
Also, Kara and Missy from “Crazy Girls” at Riviera; three of the “X Burlesque” girls at Flamingo -- Jennifer, Meeka and Nanako, with a fourth, Megan, added online; Amanda from “Peepshow” at Planet Hollywood; Jennifer Romas from “iCandy Burlesque” at Planet Hollywood; Natasha from “Vegas! The Show”; four lovely ladies from “The Sirens of T.I.” at Treasure Island -- Meagan, Kimi, Tara and Abigail -- with eight Sirens total featured in the online contest. You can find them all on Facebook.
An update to our 50th anniversary Sports Illustrated swimsuit coverage as the models led by repeat cover girl Kate Upton and body-painted Katherine Webb arrive here Wednesday: It’s the 50-feet wonder women! The bikini beauties will be seen on Octavius Tower at Caesars on Wednesday night in a live, 3D presentation using projectors, technology and animation.
FOR THE RECORD: The sexy and talented showgirl dancers of Las Vegas are tired of being confused with strip-club entertainers and frustrated with being dismissed for their dancing routines. I didn’t make it any easier with my story last week on nurse-by-day, dancer-by-night Amy Toliver. She was delighted with our story but wanted to point out: “It makes people feel we are strippers rather than professionally trained dancers who work really hard every time we’re onstage. I wear a cat suit that covers my entire body from head to toe, so I don’t shed my clothes -- and it’s not a striptease.
“Being a dancer in Las Vegas can be a lot harder than most people think, especially when you go out of your way to run from the stereotypes that exist. I look forward to the day when dancers are portrayed in a positive, respected light, and their achievements they have mastered along the way are showcased. It just gets exhausting having to constantly protect what I know I have worked so hard to achieve from all the scandalous vulgarity there is here in Las Vegas.”
WHITNEY REMEMBERED: It was a year ago Monday that Whitney Houston was found dead in her Beverly Hills Hotel suite. To mark her memory, a wax figure was unveiled at Madame Tussaud’s around the world. Christopher Rauschnot @24kMedia on Twitter recorded a video of the version that went on show here at The Venetian.
2013 UNLVINO HONOREES: The 39th Annual UNLVino will recognize four leaders in the hospitality industry with the Dom Perignon Award of Excellence at a series of tasting events April 18-21. Chefs Thomas Keller and Masaharu Morimoto; restaurateur Elizabeth Blau; and MGM Grand President and COO Scott Sibella have been selected by students of UNLV’s William F. Harrah Hotel College of Hotel Administration and Southern Wine & Spirits to receive awards, which honors individuals who have distinguished themselves through leadership, character and work ethic.
HUGGING RECORD: Hugger Jeff Ondash, who set a world record on The Strip in 2010 for hugging, will be back Friday and Saturday to set two new records. Jeff, nicknamed Teddy McHuggin, will try for an eight-hour record starting 2 p.m. Friday, and then after that warm-up from 4 p.m. Saturday through 4 p.m. Sunday will target 10,000 hugs to beat his 7,777 in 2010. It’s all to raise awareness and funds for National Heart Awareness Month, so if you see him, hug him!
SUMMER’S HERE -- ALMOST: The first Spring preview of the pool-party season is March 16 at Encore Beach Club in Steve Wynn’s Encore. DJ David Guetta will play at the official grand opening April 6. Resident DJs Afrojack and Avicii also return, with Will.I.Am, Redfoo, Dirty South and Eric Prydz joining the line-up.
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.
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