With May, Atlantic City casinos make way for the unofficial start of the summer season on Memorial Day, but there are plenty of other events leading up to that last weekend.
Tropicana kicks things off with a salute to the Kentucky Derby May 6. Derby fans are invited to don their finest hats, watch the races and strut their stuff in 10 North Lounge during a hat contest at 7:30 p.m. Grand prize is a $250 Tropicana gift card, and mint juleps will be available for $10. Those looking to purchase the perfect hat can get a 20 percent at the Hat Emporium located in The Quarter. Just mention the contest. (Discounts don’t apply to sale items and sales using comp dollars.)
As if that’s not enough, Mark Diomede’s Alligator will present a tribute to the Grateful Dead with a free concert that night at 8 in the Grand Exhibition Center. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Concert attendees must be 21.
In addition, Tropicana’s Spring Fever Festival continues through May 15. The festival features food and drink specials, seasonal photo ops, sand sculptures, a mariachi-shaped topiary located in Palm Walk, giveaways, themed nightlife events, and more.
Another reason to visit Atlantic City on May 6 is the opening of celebrity chef Michael Symon’s Angeline at the Borgata. Named after his mother Angel, Angeline will showcase cuisine that’s “inspired Italian, classically crafted,” he says. Every dish on the menu will be tied to his heritage and personal history.
(Inside Scoop : TravelZork’s CoachKitty will have a review for us to enjoy shortly after opening.)
Stirred or shaken
Belly up to the bar and celebrate Martini Week May 13 to 20 at the Tropicana. Celebrate America’s favorite cocktail with resort-wide martini specials and shopping discounts.
The week kicks off with a Mother-Daughter Look-Alike Contest May 13, hosted by 95.1 WAYV. Diane Mitchell of the Mike & Diane morning show serves as emcee of this event which takes place from noon to 2 p.m. in The Quarter. Among other prizes, the grand prize mother-daughter duo scores a pair of tickets to see Bruno Mars.
If wine is more your thing, head over to Resorts Casino Hotel that afternoon for Sip, Savor and Celebrate from 3 to 7 p.m. in the Ocean Ballroom. Enjoy more than 40 wines from around the world, sample tapas and enjoy live music. Admission is $35 per person and includes a souvenir tasting glass. Purchase tickets at the box office or visit Ticketmaster.com.
Memorial Day Weekend
Bally’s, Resorts and Tropicana end the month with Memorial Day Weekend openings and activities.
Bally’s Beach Bar opens on May 26.
Later that afternoon Resorts will host its annual 5 o’clock Beach Ball Drop, as well as kick-off its $2 million Flip Flop Fever. Star cardholders can play daily through Sept. 2 to win $2 million. Each cardholder can play once each day for free and get a second chance after earning five tier points.
At 8 p.m. the other end of the Boardwalk will light up with fireworks, live entertainment, giveaways, and multimedia light and sound shows when Tropicana hosts a free Block Party from 8 to 10 p.m.
Here are other “insider” tips about what’s happening in Atlantic City’s casinos during May:
Bally’s Atlantic City
Win a 2017 Ford Mustang or $45,000 cash at 6 p.m. May 28. Receive one entry for every 25 tier credits earned May 26 to May 28.
Play and earn daily through June 24 to win a share of free play prizes at the $100K Boardwalk Bucks Giveaway Grand Finale Drawing on June 25. Receive one entry for every 25 tier credits earned. Play every Tuesday to increase your odds with 5X earned entries.
Details at the Total Rewards Center.
Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa
Every two hours – at 2, 4, 6, 8 and 10 p.m. – May 5 one winner will be selected to win a Porsche Cayenne. To enter, insert your My Borgata card into any slot machine or open a table games rating from noon to 9:30 p.m.
During the Mother’s Day Weekend Sweepstakes May 13 insert your My Borgata Rewards card into any slot machine or open a table games rating from 2 to 7:30 p.m. In hourly drawings from 4 to 8 p.m. win a Rolex, cash or free slot play.
On May 18 earn 10X Bonus Slot Dollars by playing slots between noon and 7 p.m.
Win 5,000 Bonus Slot Dollars every 15 minutes from noon to 7 p.m. May 28 and May 29.
Visit the MyBorgata Rewards Desk for details on all these promotions.
Borgata Comedy Club (check for dates in May), AC2-An Intimate Evening with Anderson Cooper & Andy Cohen (May 6), Idina Menzel (May 20), The Burlesque Show (May 25), Kevin James (May 27), Lisa Lampanelli (May 27), Maxwell with Leela James and Ledisi (May 28). For tickets visit TheBorgata.com or call (866) 900-4TIX (4849).
Caesars Atlantic City
Win a 2017 Ford Mustang or $45,000 cash at 8 p.m. May 28. Receive one entry for every 25 tier credits earned May 26 to May 28. Details at the Total Rewards Center.
Tony Bennett (May 14), “Swan Lake” by the Atlantic City Ballet (May 21). For tickets, visit Ticketmaster.com.
Golden Nugget Atlantic City
2017 Jeep Wrangler Giveaway May 29 at 4 p.m. Earn entries May 1 to May 29. Five finalists each will win $1,000 in free play. For details, visit the 24K Select Club.
Free self-parking continues.
$10,000 Bingo Bonanza at 2 and 7 p.m. in The Grand on May 1, 15, 22 and 29. For details, visit the 24K Select Club.
John Tesh (May 13). For tickets, visit Ticketmaster.com or call (800) 736-1420.
Enjoy free performances by tribute bands on Flashback Fridays at 9 p.m. in the Showroom: Bruce in the USA (Bruce Springsteen) on May 5, Life On Mars (David Bowie) on May 13, Don’t Look Back (Boston) on May 19.
Win one of three BMW convertibles or $45,000 cash on May 27. Earn drawing entries by playing slots and table games through May 27. Receive one entry for every 25 tier credits earned at Harrah’s. Playing on Tuesdays increases your odds with 5X earned entries. Details at the Total Rewards Center.
The Diamonds (May 4), The Cult (May 6), Lou Christie (May 11), The Tenors (May 12), The Happenings (May 18), Motortown All-Stars (May 25), Dru Hill (May 26). For tickets, visit Ticketmaster.com or call (800) 736-1420.
Resorts Casino Hotel
Play your favorite slots or table games to earn entries through May 28 to win a 2017 BMW X1. For every tier point you earn, you’ll receive one entry into the sweepstakes. The drawing will be at 4 p.m. May 28, but you must activate your entries that day by playing any slot machine or table game while using your Star card.
Top tier point earners between April 1 and May 31 will earn a share of $75,000 in bonuses on June 24.
Frankie Z (May 13), The Flamingos, La La Brooks and Dennis Tufano (May 20), Kansas (May 26). For tickets, visit Ticketmaster.com or the Resorts Box Office.
Tropicana Atlantic City
Sinbad (May 6), Stephanie Mills (May 14), The Drifters & The Platters (May 20), Aaron Lewis (May 27). For tickets, visit Ticketmaster.com, call (800) 745-3000 or check with the Tropicana Box Office.
Another entertainment option at Tropicana is Atlantic City’s only IMAX® Theatre. “The Fate of the Furious” runs through May 4, followed by “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” through May 25 when “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales” begins a run through June 1. “Great White Shark 3D” opens May 27 for a run through Dec. 31. “Rocky Mountain Express” continues through May 25.
(Editorial Note : Sinbad has cancelled his performance at Trop. No reason. Not being rescheduled.)
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Recreational gambler Darryl D. McEwen is publisher of the Seven Stars Insider – both the website (www.SevenStarsInsider.com) and the monthly newsletter. For a free subscription to the newsletter, join the mailing list at Seven Stars Insider and tell him how you heard about it. You also can download the newsletter from the website where he frequently updates news about Caesars Entertainment and Total Rewards under “Latest News” on the home page. In addition, be sure to follow @7StarsInsider on Twitter.
Darryl also writes a bi-weekly column, Mr. AC Casino, for the Atlantic City Weekly. A former professional journalist, based in Wilmington, Delaware, Darryl is president of his own consulting firm that manages several small national and international trade associations, and provides public relations and fundraising services for a number of charitable organizations.