Memories from Las Vegas

Posted on February 4, 2009 by LCT Magazine

By Jim A. Luff

Exhausting!  That is the single word that comes to mind when I reflect back on the show.  I suppose if you didn’t try to pack every single thing the show has to offer into your schedule it might be manageable.


I wanted to see everything, do everything, be everywhere and get the most out of the show that I possibly could.  I made a note to myself when I got home that arriving in Vegas, gambling and drinking cocktails with associates until the wee hours of the morning on the first night is probably not the best move.  Especially when you need to be ready for a full day by 8 o’clock in the morning.

The trip to Vegas was one of those classic road trips with our good friends, James and Carol.  I knew there was a 50’s diner called Peggy Sue’s along the route but I made a mistake and sent James driving the wrong way on the wrong highway with both our wives pleading to stop at a gas station to ask for directions.  I wouldn’t have it!  My wife continued to argue that she knew just where it was and we should listen to her.  I should have.  For the rest of the trip, they called me Peggy Sue.  At least they loved the food when my wife finally got us there!

On our arrival, I hooked up with editor Martin Romjue and enjoyed cocktails, playing Blackjack and later moving to a club where we enjoyed watching a female deejay play music and dance by herself in some type of bizarre, one-woman show.  That was enough for one day and I was off to bed – except that it was now the next day.  Martin’s parting words were to remind me of a morning assignment.

Monday brought lot’s of fun as I attended the First Timer’s luncheon and was fortunate to sit with industry icon, Diane Forgy as well as some new people in the industry.  I met quite a few new people in the room other than my tablemates.  I would be remiss if I did not mention I attended classes on this day too, not to mention my LCT Magazine bosses could actually read this blog and think all I did was had fun.  But, attending classes doesn’t rank as “fond memories.”  Nothing like the party at Madame Taussauds Wax Museum of course.  That is a fond memory.  Taking silly photos with wax figures like Tiger Woods and my childhood idol, Evel Knieval.  I hammed it up good in photos, whispering into Tiger’s ear as if I was giving Tiger advice on how to play golf.  The party was nothing like the classic parties that Krystal hosted in the past.  This party was much more subdued and broken up into many small rooms instead of one large ballroom as in the past.  I definitely missed the dancing that goes with any Krystal party.  I was ready to dance but alas there was no such thing at this party so it was back to the hotel to create our own party.  There was Martin again reminding me about morning duties I had.

Tuesday was even more fun.  I attended the awards gala and had the opportunity to talk with so many industry legends in a single room.  Scott Solombrino heckled industry luminaries by name while the auctioneer called out bids for the NLA Charity Auction, and took humorous pot shots at various operators while strutting about the stage. He challenged his long time industry competitor and rival, Dawson Rutter, to a charity golf outing, but Rutter was not in the room to take him up on his offer. 

After the gala, we headed up to the hospitality suites for a night of elbow rubbing, business card swapping, story telling, picture taking fun with plenty of free alcohol flowing.  In case my LCT Magazine bosses are reading this, I assure you, I went to all assigned classes during this day as well.  Did I mention that the Palazzo has fabulous room service and promises delivery within 30 minutes?  Breakfast in bed served by a stranger is awesome.  Well, I have an expense report to work on now.  Hope those bosses from LCT don’t really read what I write here.  If you didn’t go to the show, don’t miss it next year.  I will be smiling until then!

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