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Heard it on the River

2 August 2004

This hasn't been confirmed but we heard that GRAND CASINO, who stepped up to sponsor the LEWIS-TYSON fight two years ago, will again answer the bell and be the major sponsor for the ROY JONES-GLENN JOHSON IBF light heavyweight championship this September in the FEDEXFORUM. It would appear that Tunica would also be the site of training camps for both boxers. The match is another coup for our own big-time fight promoter, BRIAN YOUNG, and his brother, RUSS, of PRIZE FIGHT BOXING. Prize Fight brought the Lewis-Tyson fight to Memphis and now has Jones on tap, perhaps the best boxer, pound-for-pound, fighting today. Jones brings a 49-2 record to the fight and Johnson sports a 40-9-2 record. Roll out the limos.

There were some naysayers who said a big money craps tournament wouldn't work in the state but GOLDSTRIKE is poised to launch its third MISSISSIPPI CRAPS CHAMPIONSHIP and has doubled the prize money to boot. There is $100,000 on the green felt with a $50,000 first prize when the event kicks off Saturday Aug. 15 and concludes the next day. Check out the article on page ____for more information. To enter call 1-877.24K.VIPS!

Speaking of big money tournaments, the final round of the $120,000 SUMMER SERIES blackjack tournament at PEARL RIVER RESORT is August 18 and qualifying takes place on preceding Wednesdays with only a $100 buy-in. There is a $50,000 first place prize waiting. For more info call 866-44PEARL. Also at the resort, EXECUTIVE CHEF STAFFORD T. DeCAMBRA, has received the coveted AMERICAN CULINARY FEDERATION'S Chef Professionalism Award for 2004. With some 15 restaurants on site, it would appear he earned it. Pearl River is also giving singers/songwriters a chance to be discovered by hosting the ASCAP Songwriters Contest. There is a $1,000 first prize and entries must be postmarked by Aug. 14. All contestants will be judged by professional writers and members of ASCAP and those making the cut will perform their original songs at the Resort on Aug. 21. For more info call 1-866.44PEARL

Time moves on and soon this publication, which sets the standard for casino news and coverage in the Mid-South, will celebrate its 10th anniversary. Our new general manager, DAVID GRISHAM, has improved the mag considerably and there is more to come.

Congrats to KARL WILDENSTEIN, a Splash Casino survivor, on his new post as SPECIAL EVENTS MANAGER and to another Tunica vet, KELLI WOOTEN as the new PROMOTIONS MANAGER, both at GOLDSTRIKE.

The Mississippi Hotel & Lodging Association, in conjunction with the TUNICA CASINO OPERATORS ASSOCIATION, is holding the 30th Annual Hospitality Conference & Expo on Sept. 14/15 with events at GOLDSTRIKE and the PAUL BATTLE expo center. MORRIS MEDIA'S two sister publications, JACKPOT and MISSISSIPPI GAMING NEWS, will be on hand with a booth. Stop by and say hello.

Mighty HARRAH'S ENTERTAINMENT, now the biggest gaming company in the world, started in a bingo parlor in Reno in 1937. Your baby has grown up, BILL HARRAH.

Locally, Harrah's Tunica has installed 291 FAST CASH slot machines, which is Harrah's own coinless slot system whereby guests can cash out slot machine credits via a Fast Cash ticket. Its not another coinless slot machine says GM PETE BONNER, "But a coinless system that will support a revolution in marketing to slot customers with Harrah's leading the way."

Think you have some musical talent compared to some of those wannabe's on American Idol? Come up with an entry audition fee and you'll get your shot when Harrah's partners with AMERICAN MUSIC AUDTIONS. If you are over 21 you can enter the auditions as a single act, duo or group and do your thing in front music industry professionals and agents who will observe the performances and provide career advancing advice. Two Hall of Fame producers, ROBERT METZGAR and CHARLES E. FACH, Jr., will serve as judges for the event to be held at Harrah's third floor Carnival Room beginning Sunday August 18 through Aug. 22. To register and for entry fee information call 800-767-4984 or go to www.americanmusicauditons.com.

FOUR CARD poker is growing in popularity and JOE STRONSKI, VP of TABLE GAMES at HOLLYWOOD, has installed the game there. If you play the right strategy, you can keep the house odds fairly low. GRAND CASINO's first freestyle fighting championships was a success with over 2,000 fans in attendance for the rough and tumble action.

We've heard that a well-known gaming company is pushing for legalized gaming in several ARKANSAS counties. As state budgets grow and fiscal pressures increase, gaming is proliferating across the country so who knows what might happen in Arkansas.

Will WORLD TEAM TENNIS add Tunica County as an expansion franchise? This venue is a strong possibility and the county and WTT officials are now evaluating its appeal, says WEBSTER FRANKLIN, our CVB executive director. A franchise would be awarded in December. Tennis is nice but we wonder what's the status of our proposed NASCAR track?

JEN HASKINS has been working at FAIRBANKS restaurant at Hollywood for over seven years now but her duties as bartender have not dulled her creativity. Her latest martini concoction is KEY LIME MARTIN, which you can whip up with Absolut Vodka (vanilla), limejuice, pineapple juice and garnish with a touch of whipped dream and a lime. It is better than the namesake pie. RONNIE AUSTIN, chef de cuisine at Fairbanks, recommends you try the seafood bird's nest entrée and the lobster spring rolls if you want to experience some sophisticated Asian offerings. I am not sophisticated but I call tell you my taste is and he was right.

From THE QUOTABLE GAMBLER…The Lyons Press…

"The Casino Manager got on the loudspeaker system and announced, 'A bomb threat has been received; please vacate the casino.' Nobody moved. Five minutes alter the Casino Manager announced again, 'Please, everybody leave the casino. A bomb threat has been received.'

The blackjack players were the first to go, then the crapshooters…. then the baccarat players, finally the roulette players left. But the slot machines kept whirring and flashing."

MARIO PUZO, Inside Las Vegas (1976)

Laissez le bon temps rouler.

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Best of Rudi Schiffer
Rudi Schiffer

Rudi Schiffer is a long time columnist and contributing writer for Jackpot Magazine, the South’s leading gaming publication, and for casinocitytimes.com, the world’s leading casino industry internet news distributor. He is also owner and co-host of the 20-year-old Goodtimes Radio Show, now simulcast on Fridays from 3-6 PM Central Time from Country Classic 1180 AM, Memphis networked with KMIS 1050 AM, and 103.9 KGLU FM from Kennet, MO covering parts of Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi. His radio show is also archived at audiovegas.com. A Boston University Journalism graduate, he resides in Memphis, TN. Known as the "Voice of Tunica" for his support the gaming jurisdiction for two decades, he was also recently named to Memphis Business Quarterly Magazine’s 3rd annual “The Power Players, Who’s Who” of Memphis.He is also a contributing writer for Southern Gaming & Entertainment and Mississippi Gaming.

Rudi Schiffer Websites:

www.AudioVegas.com
Rudi Schiffer
Rudi Schiffer is a long time columnist and contributing writer for Jackpot Magazine, the South’s leading gaming publication, and for casinocitytimes.com, the world’s leading casino industry internet news distributor. He is also owner and co-host of the 20-year-old Goodtimes Radio Show, now simulcast on Fridays from 3-6 PM Central Time from Country Classic 1180 AM, Memphis networked with KMIS 1050 AM, and 103.9 KGLU FM from Kennet, MO covering parts of Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi. His radio show is also archived at audiovegas.com. A Boston University Journalism graduate, he resides in Memphis, TN. Known as the "Voice of Tunica" for his support the gaming jurisdiction for two decades, he was also recently named to Memphis Business Quarterly Magazine’s 3rd annual “The Power Players, Who’s Who” of Memphis.He is also a contributing writer for Southern Gaming & Entertainment and Mississippi Gaming.

Rudi Schiffer Websites:

www.AudioVegas.com