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'Labor' of love for Jerry Lewis

Sep 2, 2008 7:04 PM

The Full Monti by Monti Rock III | Like so many others, this GamingToday columnist has been glued to television.

The Democratic Convention filled with star power along with Hillary and Bill Clinton who offered what seemed to be their lukewarm support for Obama. I know not everyone approved of Hillaryís costume, but I thought she made a fine looking pumpkin the night she gave her speech.

I do admire her and Chelsea has become quite the eye candy. It looked as if those attending the Convention were having great fun. I loved the gaudy hats so much that Iím seriously considering making an effort in the future to be part of that scene.

This has been a long political season, but itís provided material for columnists, comedians and analysts that will carry on for a considerable time. Wonder what all those political analysts on television will do after the election? Find a new career no doubt.

Here in Las Vegas, the annual Labor Day Telethon with our one and only Jerry Lewis hosting was held at the South Point Hotel and Casino. The Las Vegas Fire Department made their contributions again with their "boot" drive and as usual a job well done.

Many local celebrities and corporate sponsors were on board to help raise money to meet the goal set for 2008. The Muscular Dystrophy Association has become known for the great work they do and Jerry will always be known as the force behind this wonderful cause.

With Donny and Marie Osmond covering the entire face of the Flamingo on Las Vegas Boulevard, the time draws near for their debut. Even though Toni Braxton made a hasty exit from the Flamingo due to health issues, it seems sheís made a full recovery.

Don Marrandino, president of the Flamingo, has been very gracious about Toni and her scheduled appearance on "Dancing With The Stars."

Recently I was on the phone with Johnny Thompson, seen by many as the master magician in the world. Johnny has been a mentor to Las Vegas star Lance Burton and Criss Angel, who is scheduled to debut his new show sometime in September.

Johnny was called to the Luxor in order to fine tune the bird act set for the latest Cirque show, "Believe," with Angel. It must have been a serious talk with those birds because thereís been no change in the expected opening.

Barry Manilow continues to do capacity business at the Hilton while "Menopause the Musical" is down to one cast while doing respectable business.

As if we donít have enough drama in Las Vegas, well-known rap producer Suge Knight was recently arrested on charges of battery. Seems Suge and his lady friend got into a tiff. I call it a tiff, she calls it a beating and the police call it battery. Get the picture?

Suge is a big dude in more ways than one. He shelled out $19,000 and walked out the door, or so Iím told.

Last week the local Las Vegas theaters had their version of the Tony Awards. I was confused because I thought the Tonys were a product of New York Cityís Broadway theater.

Everyone would like to think the economy is getting better across the country with the gas prices going down and the political season near its climax, but here in Las Vegas many of our local residents are finding new changes to their casino outings.

The changes have somewhat diminished the overall enjoyment, especially for our retired friends or those on fixed incomes.

More than 10 years ago, the casinos came up with the idea of "players cards," which earn points for the players. Over time the casino guests have become familiar with the players cards and most casinos offer specials for using the cards, such as complimentary buffets or dinners, even show room tickets.

Unfortunately the current economic atmosphere has caused several of the casinos to discontinue or decrease the value of the points earned by players. In other words, no comps. The high rollers arenít affected by this, but they probably donít play the nickel or quarter machines like so many of our local players. Maybe itís true, maybe Las Vegas runs on nickels.

Among this weekís openings were Eastside Cannery, which boasts a "tableside buffet," a very novel approach. A ballroom, sports book, bingo hall, are among some of the other features.

Rok at New York-New York offers rock and roll, hip hop, and top 40ís for the different types of people visiting this property. On the reality television rundown, "American Idol" has added a fourth judge. No, Paula Abdul is not out. "Americaís Got Talent" is a big snore except for Jerry Springer and Sharon Osborne. Pamela Anderson should get off television altogether.

It was just announced that Donald Trumpís latest version of "The Apprentice" will feature Joe Francis, who was recently busted for his part in Girls Gone Wild. The Donald is sometimes down, but never out. He goes on and on and onÖ

Labor Day has come and gone. The traditional end of summer is bringing yet another killer hurricane. We pray for the Gulf Coast and all its people.