Can’t get away from Wynn’s spy network!

Nov 5, 2002 7:04 AM

   MAGIC MAN CLAMS UP! Hard news has been hard to come by at Steve Wynn’s Le Reve project. “We’re in a quiet period,’’ is the stock line reporters get when inquiring about the Magic Man’s highly touted IPO. But SEC regulations aside — and except for his groundbreaking party last week — the Magic Man has been particularly low key.

   Case in point, a New York writer, in Las Vegas recently to do a profile on the gaming mogul, was bluntly told by Wynn himself that there would be no interview. When asked why, Wynn responded that he didn’t like “the direction” of the story.

   And how could Wynn have known about that, the reporter queried.

   Wynn then proceeded to rattle off the names of sources who had been contacted by the East Coast scribe, along with the line of questions.

   “It was 100 percent correct,’’ a pipe tells us. Vegas is still a small town after all!


   ROMANCE HELPS SWAY FOOTBALL CONTEST! Marc Weiswasser, director of Navegante Search, always put in his football picks for Station’s Great Giveaway on Wednesdays. Well, almost always. However, a few weeks ago Mark got married, and he and his new bride Kerry were traveling out of town on their honeymoon, so they had to drop off their football picks early. (Talk about dedication!)

   Well, in the eighth week of the contest they went 13-1, good for a tie with 17 other contestants (no mention of how many of them were on their honeymoon). In cases of ties, the judges look at the final score, which ended in 20. All of the contestants went over that week, so then the rules go to who put their card in first.

   So, if it hadn’t been for Mark and Kerry’s wedding, they wouldn’t have put their picks in so early and subsequently win the $10,000 first place prize. Instead, they would have shared the $15,000 among the 17 other players.

   Incidentally, Marc admitted that Kerry was the “lucky” one who picked the winners. Her secret? “Go with the animals.”


   DON’T FOOL WITH THE BUNNY! That admonition sounds like it might have come from a Playboy Club bouncer, but in fact it’s the word to the wise to racetrack owners. Specifically, it is the coalition between Turf Paradise and American Greyhound Racing that has been taken to task by Energizer Holdings Inc., the parent company (so to speak), of the Energizer Bunny.

   In a lawsuit filed against the coalition, Energizer contends that the tracks used the Energizer Bunny in political advertisement, and therefore are claiming trademark and copyright infringement. The suit also alleges trademark dilution and unfair competition.

   Trademark dilution? I hope they don’t count the time I dressed up as the bunny on Halloween!


   THEIR HEARING IS SLIGHTLY IMPAIRED: An item in a New York Post gossip column read: “We hear”¦THAT the Hard Rock Casino in Vegas may make book on who’ll die at the end of this season’s Sopranos.”

   No way!

   Apparently neither the writer nor the editor is aware of the Nevada gaming regulations that prohibit wagering on this kind of proposition.

   The reg was written after bookmaker par excellence Sonny Reisner, who was holding fort at the old Castaways, put up a prop on “Who killed J.R.” of the popular night-time soap opera, “Dynasty.” Sonny got more than he bargained for. The prop got national publicity.

   Fearing some kind of manipulation, the Nevada gaming regulators passed a new regulation that in effect prohibited any betting proposition that would not be determined in a sporting event.

   Annually, bookmakers make odds on the Oscars, elections and other events but they are not done for gaming purposes.


   WAMPUM FOR YUCCA: Their efforts didn’t get much publicity in Nevada but it is now being revealed that one of the supporters of using Yucca Mountain in Nevada as the national nuclear waste storage site were the Prairie Island Mdewakanton Community of Indians in south-central Minnesota.

   Since the tribe opened its Treasure Island Resort and Casino just south of the Twin Cities in Minnesota, gaming profits have swelled the tribe’s coffers. To gain respect and influence, the Prairie Island members have increased their political contributions, becoming one of the largest political contributors among Indians.

   During the Yucca debate, the tribe took out full-page ads in the Minneapolis and St. Paul daily newspapers, as well as Roll Call, a Capitol Hill newspaper, about Yucca Mountain.

   Their reasoning was that if Yucca received Congressional approval it would limit the amount of nuclear waste stored at an Xcel Energy waste site that is only 600 yards from the tribe’s reservation.


   WHAT’S ON THE DOCKET? Turnberry Associates, builders of those two ultra-expensive condominium high-rises across from the Las Vegas Hilton on Paradise Road, may have plans to build a casino on the site of the former El Rancho Hotel/Casino but another project may push that one even further into the future.

   Word around town during the past couple of weeks is that officials at MGM MIRAGE are trying to get Turnberry interested in putting up a residential property on the site of the old children’s theme park. Part of the theme park was used for MGM Grand’s Mansions, catering to their high-roller clientele, leaving ample real estate for some kind of development.

   Maybe Turnberry could put up a condo high-rise or maybe even a time-share unit.


            LET ME CALL YOU DADDY! Francesca Weil the youngest member of the Lorne Weil family arrived mid-October, the proud mother and father are all aglow. I hear Lorne is handing out cigars by the boxful. His wife Kathy reports that baby Francesca is full of her dad. (Poor child!) Congratulations and all the best.