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Michael Jordan, Will Smith, Michael Phelps, Bruce & Brody Jenner, Wayne Gretzky & More at Michael Jordan Celebrity Int’l Gala

April 6, 2013 by  



Will Smith and Michael Phelps
Friday night, sports and entertainment stars including Michael Jordan, Will Smith, Don Cheadle, Bruce & Brody Jenner, Chevy Chase, Michael Phelps, Julius “Dr. J” Erving, Jerry Rice and Wayne Gretzky among dozens of others gathered at ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas for the 12th Annual Michael Jordan Celebrity Invitational Celebration (Photo credit: Getty Images Entertainment, Isaac Brekken/Bryan Steffy)

Will Smith and Michael Jordan

Will Smith and Michael Jordan

Photo credit: Getty Images Entertainment, Isaac Brekken/Bryan Steffy.

The star-studded annual gala marks a night of celebration kicking off the two days of exclusive celebrity golf competition at Shadow Creek in the name of charitable fundraising. Stars arrived on the red carpet in droves, stopping to smile for cameras as they met Joseph Domingues, a Make-A-Wish “wish kid” who fulfilled his dream of meeting MJ earlier in the day. Joseph was able to meet many of his idols at the event, including Michael Phelps (who gave Joseph some pointers on how to walk a red carpet), Marcus Allen, Stuart Scott, Roger Clemens, Vince Coleman, Jonathan Ogden, Ron Harper and Jerome Bettis.

Michael Jordan, Yvette Prieto and Will Smith

Michael Jordan, Yvette Prieto and Will Smith

Photo credit: Getty Images Entertainment, Isaac Brekken/Bryan Steffy.

At the gala celebration inside ARIA, celebrities mingled while enjoying gourmet nosh from incredible ARIA restaurants including Jean Georges Steakhouse, Sage, bar MASA, Tetsu, Sirio Ristorante, Lemongrass, Blossom & Javier’s. Guests also sipped craft cocktails from multiple bars sponsored by Ciroc and Moët Hennessy.

Michael Jordan and Yvette Prieto

Michael Jordan and Yvette Prieto

Photo credit: Getty Images Entertainment, Isaac Brekken/Bryan Steffy.

To enjoy the evening’s entertainment, Jordan sat front-and-center by the stage with fiancée Yvette Prieto, where he was joined by pal Will Smith, whom he hugged upon arrival.

Michael Jordan & Make-A-Wish Wish Kid Joseph Domingues

Michael Jordan & Make-A-Wish Wish Kid Joseph Domingues

Photo credit: Getty Images Entertainment, Isaac Brekken/Bryan Steffy.

The crowd also enjoyed a surprise show by Blue Man Group, who emerged from the crowd to dazzle guests with their immersive audiovisual comedy show, and a live performance by GRAMMY Award-winning artist John Legend, who admitted he was feeling “star struck” amongst his company for the evening. The soulful singer serenaded attendees with his hits including “Green Light” as he played piano.

Chevy & Jayne Chase at MJCI Gala

Chevy & Jayne Chase at MJCI Gala

Photo credit: Getty Images Entertainment, Isaac Brekken/Bryan Steffy.

Comedian/singer Wayne Brady headlined entertainment for the evening, delivering his signature interactive freestyle sketch comedy as he accepted storyline suggestions from the audience. Brady launched his hilarious performance with a “Stuck In an Elevator” skit, a topic suggested by Will Smith, whom Brady jokingly referred to as the “Fresh Prince” to the delight of the audience. Brady incorporated insider jests at various celebrities into his standup show, which was co-hosted by Jonathan Mangum.

Wayne Gretzky, Janet Jones-Gretzky and Trevor Gretzky  on red carpet at MJCI Gala at ARIA Resort & Casino

Wayne Gretzky, Janet Jones-Gretzky and Trevor Gretzky
on red carpet at MJCI Gala at ARIA Resort & Casino

Photo credit: Getty Images Entertainment, Isaac Brekken/Bryan Steffy.

CityCenter President & CEO Bobby Baldwin welcomed the elite crowd to ARIA Resort & Casino and introduced “His Airness.” MJ took the microphone to thank his friends, sponsors and volunteers for all of the hard work put in to make the charitable tournament a huge success. The champion wished his competitors good luck, but remarked that he was looking forward to winning come Sunday.

Bruce and Brody Jenner

Bruce and Brody Jenner

Photo credit: Getty Images Entertainment, Isaac Brekken/Bryan Steffy.

Later in the evening, the party transformed into a pop-up nightclub with R&B, EDM and hip-hop beats spun by DJ Irie. Celebs hit the dance floor into the early morning hours and NFL legend Jason Taylor was even spotted ascending the DJ booth to spin a few tracks for his friends.

Adrian Young and Nina Kent

Adrian Young and Nina Kent

Photo credit: Getty Images Entertainment, Isaac Brekken/Bryan Steffy.

© 2013, VegasNews.com. All rights reserved. All content copyrighted or used with permission. All rights reserved. This content may not be distributed, modified, reproduced in whole or in part without prior permission from VegasNews.com.


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