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By Dianne R. Davis

Photos by Dianne or Burt Davis
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The 27th Nightclub and Bar Convention & Trade Show Held in Vegas

I've never seen so many mini cups and glasses. And they were full of samples of the multitude of drinks being served at the 27th annual Nightclub and Bar – NCB – Show, the group's most important bar, nightclub and beverage event of the year. The annual convention, held at the LV Convention Center from March 12-14, brought more than 31,000 industry professionals, including owners and managers of bars, nightclubs, restaurants, hotels, and resorts. What a perfect convention for Las Vegas.

Most conventions include industry seminars and this was no exception. Attendees could brush up on the art of making the perfect cocktail or learn how to insure their bars against lawsuits.

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Toby Keith and Group President John Taffer posed for photos after
the ribbon cutting to open the Nightclub and Bar Convention.

What's a Vegas based convention without celebrities. Toby Keith cut the ribbon to open the show  as well as to showcase his new brand Wild Shot Mezcal which he assured everyone is available at his I Love This Bar & Grill in Las Vegas and around the country.

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Pauly Shore

Other celebrities in attendance included comedian Pauly Shore who delivered the key note address. While he is best known for his career as a comic, Shore had a first hand relationship with the nightclub and bar world as his mother Mitzi owned and operated The Comedy Store in Los Angeles. Shore described the Comedy Store as, “an important part of my entire life” and shared stories from his experiences there.
Other celebrities who walked the red carpet during the Expo included The Chippendales,  boxing referee Joe Cortez, MTV pop group MOSAIC, and former Pussycat Doll Kaya Jones.
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I alway enjoy visiting with the Chippendales.

Local comedy hypnotist and entrepreneur Anthony Cools stopped by.  In addition to doing his show at Paris, Cools runs the Swingers Club night spot at the Plaza Hotel and oversees the entertainment there. I even spotted the green M&M near the Mars Candy booth!

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"The Real Housewives of New Jersey" star Teresa Giudice, pictured 
with Rapper Coolio showcased her new sparkling wine "Fabellini" live.

I stopped by to watch “Shake It Up”, billed as The Battle of the Mixologists. It was fun and light-hearted, but it was business for the participants eager to be judged to have demonstrated skill, flair and creativity. The judges were a who's who in the field and winning was a feather in the caps of the bartenders who were also competing for cash prizes totaling $25,000.

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The more than 600 exhibitors included not just adult beverage
companies, but the partnered industries such as specialized  
furniture and lighting, accessories, and some clever bar games.

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Visitors could get samples of various vodkas and tequila infused with all manner of flavors. Whip cream with alcohol was also available as were a variety of craft beers. After the convention day ended, there were happy hours at places like the Sugar Factory at Paris, Lavo at the Palazzo, Blondies at Planet Hollywood, Gilley's at Treasure Island and First Food & Bar at the Palazzo. Other parties that we heard about were held at XS, Marque, and Tao.

A special note. I appaud the powers that be. The security people checked IDs to be sure that those entering the expo were of drinking age. We want Vegas to be fun, not fatal, and this was a good example of industries working together. NCB – all around job well done. See you next year.


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