Notable Nevadans share New Year’s resolutions, hopes for a brighter 2011
Fri, Dec 31, 2010 (12:55 p.m.)
What's your New Year's resolution?
For most, New Year’s Eve represents a chance to start anew. It’s about looking forward to the new year and making a few self-improvements along the way. And like many others in the Las Vegas Valley, notable residents have their own set of changes they hope to achieve in 2011.
The Sun asked Las Vegas celebrities, entertainers, politicians and other recognizable members of the community to share their resolutions and hopes for the year. Some are professional and others are personal, but they all reflect a hope for a brighter 2011.
‘Peepshow’ star Holly Madison
“To get more sleep,” she said.
Nove Italiano Executive Chef Geno Bernardo
Bernardo’s New Year’s resolution is to lead a healthier lifestyle and to carry it over into Nove’s kitchen.
“For the restaurant, I’d like to incorporate some new dishes into the menu to accommodate our vegan and vegetarian guests. For the cooking classes I host at Nove Italiano, I am going to be more health-conscious when creating the menus,” Bernardo said. “I’d love to be able to give cooking enthusiasts alternative ways to serve their dishes and make them healthier for themselves and their guests when cooking from home.”
Clark County Commissioner Susan Brager
Brager said she doesn’t set resolutions to lose weight or stop drinking or gambling, but she does have a goal for what she calls “the humanity side of sitting in the commission office.”
“My goal for 2011 is to sincerely look at any way to help benefit our citizens economically and stabilize our economy in Southern Nevada,” she said.
Looming budget cuts are going to be difficult, she said, but she wants to protect social services and help provide for as many people as possible so no one goes without food and shelter.
Commissioner Lawrence Weekly
Weekly said his resolution for the new year is to “Work hard, stay healthy and stay prayerful.”
Clark County Commissioner Chris Giunchigliani
Giunchigliani said she doesn’t normally make a resolution, but this year she has a goal to do a random act of kindness every day.
“I’ve found that in the rush through life and work and all that, we forget that we are part of a larger picture,” she said.
County Commissioner Steve Sisolak
Sisolak said his New Year’s resolution is to improve on a bizarre talent.
“I’m going to learn the alphabet backwards and learn to count backwards because then maybe I’ll be able to understand some of the decisions government makes,” he said, before reciting the entire alphabet backward.
He added that he hopes to recite the alphabet backward in 15 seconds or less in 2011. “I learned how to count 1-2-3 and A-B-C, not 3-2-1, C-B-A. Somebody must be doing something differently.”
North Las Vegas Mayor Shari Buck
Buck said she doesn’t have any specific New Year’s resolutions for herself, but said she has a New Year’s wish for world peace.
Buyi Zama, Rafiki in ‘The Lion King’
Zama plans to continue her healthy lifestyle through 2011 and conquer a childhood fear.
“I have lost over 40 pounds in the past year and I want to keep that up,” Zama said. “Additionally, I want to learn to ride a bike. I fell off a bike while trying to learn to ride when I was little and never got back on. Now that I’m a smaller size and I live in a place where the weather is nice, I think it’s time to get back on a bike and try again!”
Henderson Mayor Andy Hafen
“My resolution for the year 2011 is for the city of Henderson to keep our financial belts tightened and be fiscally prudent with our budget so that we may continue to provide the exceptional services and programs that Henderson residents have come to enjoy,” he said.
Gov. Jim Gibbons
Gov. Jim Gibbons has no resolutions or goals that he cares to share. He will be celebrating the new year privately.
Congresswoman Shelley Berkley
"For the New Year, I’m committed to re-doubling my efforts in Congress to improve the economy in order that more Nevadans and more of our fellow Americans will be able to get back to work,” she said.
Comedian Louie Anderson
“My resolution is to move more than I sit, read more than I watch, laugh more than I cry and love more than I do anything else,” he said.
Boulder City Mayor Roger Tobler
Tobler said he hopes to raise awareness about the traffic problems the city has experienced since the Mike O’Callaghan-Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge opened over Hoover Dam in November. Although the bridge is “a great thing,” he said, the city needs to revive a project like the Boulder City Bypass to accommodate the increased traffic flow and minimize the effect on citizens’ quality of life.
“I want to get something in the works,” Tobler said.
The resolutions of the “Crazy Horse” dancers range from practical to daring.
Mika Do plans to hit the gym three times a week, Eva Kalashnikov wants to become a superstar and Narra Melcoum hopes to learn to speak Russian and Spanish.
Bagira Bada Boum wants to skydive while Alexa Phocea wants to travel across the United States as much as she can.
Vicky Vendome just wants to live life to the fullest.
Comedian and magician Nathan Burton
Burton is all about making his show at the Flamingo better during the new year.
"My New Year’s resolution is to keep improving my show by adding new illusions and segments. I love adding new stuff to the show so the audience can come back and see the show again and experience something new,” he said.
Metro Police Sheriff Douglas Gillespie
As the man in charge of the largest police force in the state, Gillespie has three top priorities for the new year: fighting crime, balancing a budget and keeping officers safe.
"My goal is that we continue to see a reduction in crime, that we're able to continue to deal with the economic downturn as we have in a positive way," he said, "and my goal with that is to not lay any employees off."
On a personal note — with much encouragement from his wife — Gillespie said he is committed to making 2011 a year of more balance in his life.
"There's a lot of things that could very easily keep me busy every hour I'm awake," he said. "It's important I find time for me and my family."
Goss vowed to reveal his true identity during 2011 — he’s really Batman.
But jokes aside, Goss said he hopes to continue his budding success in Las Vegas.
"I want to continue to sing all around the world and represent this wonderful city, lovely Las Vegas,” he said.
Anthony Crivello, the Phantom in ‘Phantom — The Las Vegas Spectacular’
Crivello said he isn’t making any resolutions for 2011 because he is still working on 2010’s, but does have some goals for the next year.
“My dream for 2011 is to fly to Sicily for a vacation and to Porticello and Palermo, where my grandparents were from,” he said.
Kristen Hertzenberg, Christine in ‘Phantom — The Las Vegas Spectacular’
Hertzenberg said she hopes to work out more consistently through the new year.
“Other than that, if 2011 is as good as 2010 was, I'll be happy!" she said.
Andrew Ragone, who plays Raoul, Vicomte de Chagny in ‘Phantom — The Las Vegas Spectacular’
Ragone’s hope for 2011 is one for the city of Las Vegas.
“My hopes and wishes for 2011 are that Las Vegas has a quick recovery into the new year. It's been such a tough and trying time for the city and I am just optimistic and hopeful as we enter the year that things will rebound quickly,” he said.
Travis Cloer, Frankie Valli in 'Jersey Boys'
Cloer plans to head back to yoga class to work off all of the holiday goodies and stay in touch with his friends abroad.
Rick Faugno, Frankie Valli in ‘Jersey Boys’
Faugno has a slew of hopes and resolutions for 2011.
“I hope 2011 brings stability to our economy and faith in our leaders. I resolve to give something back to the community which has embraced me,” he said. “I also resolve to make every day a newlywed day with my beautiful wife. My wife thinks I could improve on my organizational skills for 2011, although I think I get by alright.”
Jeff Leibow, Nick Massi in ‘Jersey Boys’
Leibow said his goal for 2011 is to raise awareness for neurofibromatosis, a disease that has hit close to home.
“My daughter was diagnosed with this little-known but incredibly common neurological disorder, so this one is very close to me,” he said.
John Schenk, executive chef at Strip House
Schnek’s resolutions are to walk his dogs at least four times a week, get to bed at 1 a.m. , pay off his credit cards and commit to a workout plan that yields six-pack abs by November. In between all of that, he hopes to take a real vacation.
Celebrity impersonator Frank Marino
Marino’s New Year’s resolutions are both personal and professional, but his first is to actually keep them.
“My second being to stop myself from complaining when I’m having a bad day and realize how good my life is with great friends, family and co-workers. Thirdly, with all this positive energy around me, continue to make my show ‘Divas Las Vegas’ the biggest and best drag spectacular in the world,” he said.
Comedian Vinnie Favorito
Favorito’s resolutions: start drinking, start smoking and diet.
Phil Burton plans to make over his backyard and Toby Allen promises to take his dogs out to Red Rock more often. Brothers Andrew and Michael Tierney plan to Skype with family members back in Australia and be thankful for all they have.
The Jabbawockeez dance troupe
The Jabbawockeez resolve to spend more time with the kids of the Las Vegas community and be more involved with different charities.
McClain has spent the past year opening and operating his first Las Vegas restaurant. He’s hoping next year is just as successful.
“2010 was such a great freshman year for Sage. As with many things, the second year will prove to be equally as important and challenging,” he said. “We really hope to build on the growing economy as well as strengthening our relationships with local farmers, as well as the greater Las Vegas community.”
Matt Seeber, executive chef of Craftsteak Steak House at MGM Grand
Seeber said he plans to hit the gym more often in 2011, but not just for physical reasons.
“Exercise keeps my temper even and the creative food juices flowing. Of course, exercise also helps to keep the waist trim as my 42-year-old metabolism continues to slow down,” he said.
Sun reporters Kyle Hansen, Erin Dostal, Dylan Scott, Paul Takahashi and Jackie Valley contributed to this report.