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Sitting in judgment of Strip costumes

Mark Adams takes a turn at the judges table for Marquee’s costume contest

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And the winner is … on the far right-War Machine!
Photo: Al Powers/Powers Imagery

I love costumes. I live to attend theme parties. And I’m no rookie when it comes to being overly judgmental about other people’s outfits. So when Marquee Marketing Manager (and former Weekly staffer) Deanna Rilling asked me to help judge the Cosmopolitan nightclub’s Friday the 13th Party costume contests, I knew I’d be up for the job.

Joining me in the judging were fellow journalists Xania Woodman and Natalie Holbrook, festively dressed in flapper-esque garb reminiscent of the 1920s. Though industry competitors, we made quite the trio—my gangster-inspired get-up coordinating well with their period attire.

Early in the evening we roamed the club in search of those who hadn’t registered for the contests. Marquee was festively decked out with Halloween decorations and staff members were dressed in costumes. Finding nearly no costumed partiers on the dance floors or at the bars, we retreated to the judge’s table to watch the participating patrons parade by, including Rick James, a gingerbread man and some chick dressed as what I’d call “a hot mummy.”

After a short debate over the contestants’ costumes, it was time to call: The Nicki Minaj look-a-like received top honors for sexiest costume, with a girl dressed as a zombie prom queen taking the most horrific title. Both ladies received a check for $2,000 for their stellar outfits. But the grand prize was still to come. Our nominations for best overall costume (to be decided by the club’s crowd) were Pee Wee Herman, Michael Jackson, some warrior/gladiator dude, a pair of Barbies and the standard Vegas costume contest entry: a robot—this one the comic book hero War Machine. And in the grand tradition of Vegas club costume contests, War Machine (aka the guy who could barely move all night in his massive metal suit) won the whole thing, taking home $10,000 and likely some very sore joints.

Although judging the contestants was a lot of fun, next time I just might consider joining them. Aside from Mr. Machine, my past Halloween costumes could totally contend with the night’s competition. And I’m sure I’m not the only one. So Las Vegans, pull out those costumes or tap into your creativity next time around. Your $60 drink tab could be covered—and then some—with the right attire.

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Mark Adams joined the Las Vegas Weekly in 2010 and now serves as the magazine’s web editor. You can also ...

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