Football fans are in for a real treat on Saturday, Jan, 30, as Resorts Atlantic City teams with Mike Ditka's Gridiron Greats and BCS Sports Collectibles for a memorabilia show and cocktail party featuring NFL legend Jerry Rice and other football greats.
Athletes featured at both events include Rice, who won three Super Bowls with the San Francisco 49ers and played in another with the Oakland Raiders, former Cincinnati Bengals running back Icky Woods - known for his "Icky Shuffle" - and Pro Football Hall of Famer Larry Little and Jim Kiick, who both played for the NFL's only undefeated team in league history, the 1972 Miami Dolphins.
The events will take place in the Ballroom one week before the Super Bowl.
"Jerry Rice is certainly one of the keys to the success of this event," says Resorts Senior Vice President of Marketing Kathleen McSweeney. "Not only does every football fan revere him, anyone who has been watching 'Dancing with the Stars' has come to know him as well. He has a rare crossover appeal that makes him desirable for a casino event. Another twist is that we have members of the '72 Dolphins appearing. If the Colts are still undefeated going into the final game, it will be interesting to see what Larry Little and Jim Kiick have to say."
The memorabilia and collectibles event, from noon to 5 p.m., is free to the public and all items will be available for sale. Attendees will have chance to purchase autographs from all of the athletes. Proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to the Gridiron Greats Assistance Fund, which provides financial assistance to retired NFL players in need.
"When you hear the stories of what some of these former players are going through, it really pulls on your heartstrings," McSweeney says. "We have been looking to host an event with the Gridiron Greats for quite a while but we were waiting for the perfect time. Having it the week before the Super Bowl was the perfect fit. It will give our event and the cause of the Gridiron Greats some great national attention. Everyone will be talking about football at that time. Because there is a week off - not counting the Pro Bowl -between the Championship Games and the Super Bowl, media writing about football are going to need material in addition to previews of the big game. This is a natural story for them."
Following the memorabilia show, a private cocktail receptions will be held in which attendees will be able to meet and greet the football legends, take their photo with them and win autographed memorabilia. There will also be a Q&A hosted by Mike Missanelli of ESPN Radio in Philadelphia.
Speaking of football players, Washington Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall and Jacksonville Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew were spotted at The Pool at Harrah's, hanging in a private cabana.
Poker pro Christina Lindley, who has also appeared as a model in Playboy and Maxim, spent Tuesday night at Dusk at Caesars Atlantic City. The sexy 26-year-old Atlanta native drank Dom Rose and danced by her private table all night with a group of friends. Lindley also appeared in "Big Momma's House 2" and had a role in 2006's "The Marine" with WWE star John Cena.
There were plenty of local celebrities at Masterpiece Advertising's annual holiday bash, which was held at The Palm inside The Quarter at the Tropicana. Masterpiece President Phyllis Lacca chose a "Puttin' on the Ritz" theme this year, encouraging invitees to zoot suit it up, a la "The Great Gatsby." Attendees included Atlantic City Convention and Visitors Authority Executive Director Jeffrey Vasser, New Jersey Assemblyman Vince Polistina, New Jersey Congressman Frank Lobiondo, musician and former restaurant owner Herb "Bubba Mac" Birch, Atlantic City Mayor Lorenzo Langford, former Trump Entertainment CEO Mark Brown and others.
Last-minute gift ideas
If you procrastinated way too long and still need to buy Christmas presents for that steak lover in your family, Morton's the Steakhouse inside Caesars Atlantic City has some options.
Morton's Steak Bible ($30) features grilling secrets and popular recipes, while Morton's the Cookbook ($32.50) offers more than 100 recipes that include everything from its signature cocktails to desserts. You can buy both for $60.
Morton's Steak Knives are custom-crafted and packaged in boxed sets of two for $20 and six for $55. Morton's also offers its grilling salt ($7), Cajun seasoning ($7) and a grilling essentials kit ($59) with cookbook, seasonings and a Morton's apron.
Perhaps its coolest offering is the Classic Pewter Pig Table Lamp ($59) that can be found on every Morton's table worldwide ever since the first Morton's opened in Chicago in 1978.
The Atlantic City Palm, located inside The Quarter at the Tropicana, will open its doors on Christmas Day for the first time.
So if you don't celebrate Christmas or just don't feel like cooking a big dinner, The Palm will be open from 5 to 9 p.m. on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
"By customer request, we have decided to open the restaurant for the first time on Christmas Day," says General Manager Paul Sandler. "We will be offering our traditional menu plus the incredible oyster and champagne special."
The special features a glass of Veuve Clicquot Champagne and six oysters on the half shell for $25. A portion of the proceeds from the special are being donated to Dress for Success, which provides professional attire and career development for disadvantaged women.
To make reservations, call 609-344-7256.
• Trump Marina Hotel Casino will give away $1,000 every 15 minutes on Monday, Dec. 28. Play slots or tables from noon to 8 p.m. to earn entries, and every Trump One cardholder gets a free entry.
• Play slots at Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino on Monday, Dec. 28, and you can rack up slot dollars at a higher rate as the casino will double what you earn between 6 a.m. and 5:59 a.m. Register at any Rewards Center kiosk. Slot dollars will be available at any machine 48 hours after the trip.
• Trump Marina Hotel Casino is also offering players the chance to win $1 million during its Million Dollar Blackjack Challenge. Use your Trump One Card to play table games and slots through Jan. 1 to earn entries. Then visit the casino's atrium 10 p.m. Jan. 2 for a chance to win. The casino will select six finalists to play one hand of blackjack. Those finalists are guaranteed $2,500 but could win $10,000 if the first two cards dealt are blackjack. A blackjack in spades in the first two cards dealt wins $100,000. And three 7s in the first three cards dealt can win $1 million in a 25-year annuity. Entries must be activated on Jan. by playing slots or tables between 8 a.m. and 9 p.m.
- Scott Cronick