DJs to battle each other Thursdays at Drai's

Remember the freestyle rap battles from the movie "8 Mile?"

Well, you can check out battles of a similar kind -- only with DJs duking it out -- as some of the nation's best take part in a 16-week competition at Thursdays at Drai's After Hours on inside Bill's Gamblin' Hall.

"The idea had bounced around since the beginning of the year, and as more elements came into play, the idea evolved into the contest," said Jesse Waits, one of the Drai's managing partners.

The contest started May 1, with the second round running from June 26 to July 17, where the first eight winners square off. The finals are slated for Aug. 14, when the winner will receive a cash prize and a Thursday residence in the VIP room at Drai's.

Waits said he wouldn't change a thing after a successful opening week, which was hosted by DJ Hollywood, who Waits said will host the finals.

The contest starts at 3 a.m., with a 30-minute set from each DJ, highlighted by a back-and-forth battle, with each alternating 10-minute sets. This will take place for three rotations, and if a winner isn't decided, the battle will go to a five-minute sudden death. The contest normally concludes around 5:30 a.m., with the winner staying on until closing time.

Drai's is open Thursdays to Sundays from 1 a.m. to at least 7 a.m., with hours depending on the night and the crowd.

Torrid hosts Hawaiian Tropic contestants -- Some of the world's most beautiful women will host tonight's festivities at Torrid inside the Hawaiian Tropic Zone at the Planet Hollywood Resort.

Upwards of 65 Miss Hawaiian Tropic International contestants will be at the venue, which is part of the events during the 25th anniversary of the competition in Las Vegas.

The ladies, who could be joined by Estonian beauty Anna Naroznaja, the reigning Miss Hawaiian Tropic International, will team up with DJ Direct as he spins the hip-hop and top 40 mash-ups.

All ladies drink free from 10 p.m. to midnight. For VIP bottle service and table reservations, call 731-4858.

The events lead up to the Miss Hawaiian Tropic International Final Model Search at 8 p.m. Saturday on the Fremont Street Experience's First Street Stage.

Another big weekend at the Palms -- Things will be heating up at the Palms this weekend, starting with today's 2008 Playboy Playmate Announcement Party at the weekly Ditch Fridays event at the Palms pool.

Playmate Tamara Sky (Miss August 2007) will spin a set on the turntables at the pool.

Later in the evening, DJ Jazzy Jeff will spin the music at the weekly "Music Is the Currency" party at Rain. The weekend's events will be capped with Larry Lee providing the sounds at the "After Dark" party Sunday inside the Playboy Club.

Sightings of the weekend -- Actress Michelle Rodriguez visited The Bank (Bellagio) on Saturday. Rodriguez also was spotted at the CatHouse (Luxor) on March 2, along with actress Stacy Keibler.

Motocross star Ricky Carmichael checked out Blush (Wynn Las Vegas) on Saturday.

MTV reality star Brody Jenner hosted the evening Saturday at Prive (Planet Hollywood Resort). Also at Prive: Miss Nevada USA 2008 Veronica Grabowski.

UFC fighter Quinton "Rampage" Jackson dropped by LAX (Luxor) on Saturday.

Rapper Pittsburgh Slim visited Moon and the Hugh Hefner suite (Palms) on Saturday.

Boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr. checked out Tryst (Wynn Las Vegas) on Saturday. The night before, Mayweather was spotted pulling up with his entourage to the Planet Hollywood Resort valet in a new red Ferrari, along with a yellow Ferrari and black Rolls Royce Phantom before heading inside to visit Prive.

"Rock of Love 2" winner Ambre Lake visited Jet (The Mirage) on March 2 with castmate Jessica Kinni.

Jeremy Pond covers the nightclub scene for the Las Vegas Review-Journal and Vegas Confidential. His column appears Fridays in Neon and online at and He can be reached at 383-0298 or via e-mail at