Mark Shunock, star of “Rock of Ages,” wasn’t going to miss this party. It turned into one for the ages.
The Stanley Cup was in town, and Shunock, a former goalie with the Canadian Hockey League, had finagled an invitation to the Gold Spike, the reborn downtown saloon and Zappos hangout.
“I’m Joey Vanas’ plus-one,” said Shunock, who plays Lonny, one of the leads in “Rock of Ages” at The Venetian. Vanas is the managing partner of First Friday and one of Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh’s top lieutenants.
The last time I saw Shunock, he was in hockey heaven, posing for a photo with the cup and chatting at the bar with Chicago Blackhawks owner Rocky Wirtz.
Hsieh made Shunock’s night when the CEO approached the singer, held up his cellphone and said, “I made a note to myself the other day: Go to ‘Rock of Ages.’ ”
Hsieh and Wirtz, who owns Wirtz Beverage in Las Vegas, collaborated on bringing the hallowed cup to downtown to promote the Life is Beautiful music and food festival.
Life was definitely beautiful for Shunock, who said he had butterflies all night.
He now has another hockey story to match the one about how his dad helped keep the hometown Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds from moving to Detroit.
“My father contacted the Esposito brothers — Phil and Tony — and asked if they matched the offer, would they sell to them. They agreed. A campaign started to “Save the Greyhounds.” With the support of the community and private investors, the team stayed.
“My father served as president for many years and to this day still has ownership in the team. He was responsible for keeping the team in our great city, and it’s something I’m very proud of.”
He added some hockey trivia: “When Wayne Gretzky arrived in Sault St. Marie in 1977, the number 9, which he wore, was taken, so he began to wear 99 for the first time.”
THE SCENE AND HEARD
Dress him up, hose him down. Country star Garth Brooks is a grandpa. His 19-year-old daughter, August Anna Brooks, gave birth to a girl, Karalynn, last week in Oklahoma. The father, Chance Michael Russell, announced the news on August’s Facebook page and posted a photo of the new arrival. Garth Brooks said in October that he was leaving his headliner gig at Wynn Las Vegas two years early. ...
Amanda Seyfried and Sharon Stone will be on the red carpet Sunday for the Las Vegas premiere of “Lovelace” at Planet Hollywood Resort. Also attending: co-star Cory Hardrict and directors Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman. The red carpet event begins at 1 p.m. ...
In an article that appeared here Sunday, chef Jose Andres was referring to one of his former sous chefs, not Julian Serrano, as someone who “worked with me for many years.” I quoted Andres as saying, “When I opened here, Julian Serrano left his French side and decided to open (a tapas restaurant).” My misunderstanding came in the following Andres quote, which should have read, “Funny, the chef at Julian Serrano (at Aria) used to be with me for many years.” Andres was referring to Jose Picazo, who had worked for Andres for six years at Jaleo in Bethesda, Md., before moving to another Washington, D.C., restaurant.
Nicolas Cage, buying an $800 pair of blue studded ZIGIny boots Monday at Shoooz inside the Forum Shops at Caesars.
THE PUNCH LINE
“The new blockbuster movie ‘The Wolverine’ stars Hugh Jackman, and he’s pumped up. To get all buffed out, he had to consume 6,000 calories a day. Hearing this, the governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie, said, ‘Oh, yeah? Then what did you have for dinner?’ ” — David Letterman
Norm Clarke’s column appears Sunday, Wednesday and Friday. He can be reached at 702-383-0244 or email him at email@example.com. Find more online at www.normclarke.com. Follow Norm on Twitter @Norm_Clarke. “Norm Clarke’s Vegas,” airs Thursdays on the “Morning Blend” on KTNV-TV, Channel 13.