Friday, February 17, 2012

Call Of Duty hits billion-dollar mark

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Sales of the latest instalment of Call Of Duty have topped $US1 billion barely more than two weeks after its release.

Activision Blizzard, producers of the wildly popular military first-person shooter video game, say Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 hit the billion-dollar mark 16 days after its November 8 release, breaking by one day a money-making record set by the hit 3D film Avatar in 2009.

"Call Of Duty has become that rare entertainment franchise that transcends its own genre," Activision Publishing chief executive Eric Hirshberg said in a statement.

"Every year, new people are drawn into Call Of Duty."

The game has attracted more than 30 million players, with 6 million people having registered to play with or against one another online.

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Thursday, February 16, 2012

Roxette Australian Tour: Sydney Entertainment Centre

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Sydney Music Australia

Roxette have topped the charts three times down under in Australia and with a portfolio of mega hits including It Must Have Been Love, Joyride, Listen To Your Heart, How Do You Do, Sleeping In My Car, Dressed For Success and The Look, this is expected to be one of the best live music events of 2012.

Last night they sold out Brisbane and tonight they drew strong numbers at the Sydney Entertainment Centre.

Entertainment industry experts say that its the Australia's 30 to 40 year old audience remembering the powerful and emotional songs that they heard in their youth that explains the strong drawing pull.

It was back in 1995, not long after their commercial high spot, they didn't perform to so many people.

So popular they are, that they are back at the Sydney Entertainment Centre again tomorrow night.

Charm School is their first album in ten years and its built upon the foundation that made they great.

The band is the platform for vocalist Marie Fredriksson and songwriter and guitarist Per Gessle.

The appriciative crowd really got into Dressed For Success, Joy Ride and The Look.

They combine really catchy numbers, solid voices, charisma, fashion sense and strong drawing power.

The group is expected to continue to draw strong audience numbers while touring Australia.

Websites

Roxette

Sydney Entertainment Centre

Live Nation

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Take A Bite Out Of Life - 16th February 2012





Model Laura May looks good enough to eat ahead of the launch of March Into Merivale tonight. The launch will include a gourmet extravaganza stretching the length of Ash St and into the Ivy room from 6pm to 9pm. The festival's theme is Eat My Words this year and will feature more than 60 culinary events across 21 venues until April 5. www.merivale.com (Credit: mX)

*Human Statue Bodyart helped create the model's look featured in today's front page news story on 'March Into Merivale'.

Websites

Merivale

Merivale (Ivy Bar)

Merivale (March Into Merivale)

Human Statue Bodyart

National Multicultu​ral Festival 2012; Festival Opens In Canberra, Australia - 10th February 2012

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Music Canberra Australia Politics

Today the National Multicultural Festival commenced in the nation's capital Canberra, with live music and fine food playing a significent part in the celebration.

More than 200,000 people are going to converge in Canberra's city centre this weekend for the annual celebration of multiculturalism.

The 16th festival features a record 350 stalls representing just about every nation on earth.

There are four stages and three platforms where much of the live entertainment will take place.

Tonight's opening concert starred Australian performing artist Anthony Callea, with Coloured Stone fronted by Bunna Lawrie getting a fantastic reception.

Music News Australia had the pleasure to interview Bunna after his performance and he said much of the meaning was about "hope, peace and a coming together of energies".

The food and dance spectacular on Saturday and Sunday will include an Indigenous showcase, Carnivale, Turkish bazaar, Greek glendi, Indian display and Chinese New Year celebrations.

Festival project manager Jancye Winter advised in excess of 300 groups and 70 diplomatic missions are involved.

"When you bring food and dance together, you find all of the community works very hard together. We see this particularly at this time of the year, that all of the community groups are working very cooperatively together," she said.

"By going around the stalls you will see the real diversity of all of the cultures here. It's a true celebration of Canberra's diversity."

Ms Winter says many of the visitors and entertainers travel from interstate and overseas.

"The festival brings in so many visitors and has an impact across not only accommodation but many of the tourist outlets, and indeed the shops in Civic enjoy a boost in retail because we bring people right into the heart of the city centre," she said.

Festival ambassador Wolfgang Blass immigrated to Australia from Germany in the 1960s, establishing the well-known Wolf Blass winery in South Australia's Barossa Valley.

He says the festival helps bring different sections of the communities together.

"We have to live together, we have to learn to live together and this multicultural event is going to bring people together," he said.

"Let's hope we all, in a united way, have a good time and enjoy the food that each culture is going to present."

Mr Blass says Australia is a lucky country that has come a long way.

"We are now a society entering a leisurely lifestyle," he said.

"Politically we don't have any big problems. There is no unrest in this country. We have a very strong sporting mind and it is important that we are free and have a strong democracy."

Mr Blass also emphasised that it was "time to party", and started that "Canberra really knows how to put on a party".

Mr Blass also shared the stage with Joy Burch MLA ACT Minister for Multicultural Affairs.

So far the festival looks to have been a wonderful success.

Websites

National Multicultural Festival 2012

Australian Capital Territory Government Information Portal

Australia.com

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Mardi Gras Fair Day At Victoria Park; Sydney, Australia - 12th February 2012

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Sydney Australia

For many Sydney-siders Fair Day was a great way to kick off the official Mardi Gras season, with a fun and relaxed day at Sydney's Victoria Park.

Estimates indicate that about 70,000 people came to enjoy Fair Day.

The 2012 Fair Day featured a range of activities.

The main music stage offered up Maxine Kauter, Brendan Maclean, Mary Kiani Gen Chadwick,  Shimtastic, Kristy Apps, Candy Royalle, Sloppy Joe, Miss Gaynor Tension and Blackcat Lounge - Queer Cabaret.

There was also the traditional Mr and Mrs Fair Day comp which was hosted by Charisma Belle, with judges Anthony Defina (Chelsea Bun), Glenn Hansen and Fiona Gamble.

Other entertainment on the day included Pot of Love, an interactive stall by artist Amanda King, Rainbow Reuse and performances from Mardi Gras Youth Festival participants.

Pet's of the four legged kind even showed up to join in the fun. Dogs and their owners competed in Owner/Dog Look-A-Like, Best ‘Pick Up’ Dog, Best Dressed Dog and The Famous Doggywood Obstacle Course.

The Gaydar Lounge, incorporating Gaydar Radio was popular with those wanting to chill, as was The Finlandia Lounge.

Victoria Park Camperdown is the place to be to take in the Mardi Gras Fair Day up till 8pm tonight.

Websites

Mardi Gras official website

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Eva Rinaldi Photography

Music News Australia

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Aston Martin DB5 Starring in James Bond’s Skyfall Movie, by Greg Tingle

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From Bondi Beach, Sydney, Australia to the UK, Hollywood and beyond, the world knows of the James Bond franchise, as well as his famous cars... especially the Aston Martin.

Australia's most famous beach is understood to be home to at least a dozen Aston Martin's, but we know some owners like to hide they away, rather than to show them off, with some locals preferring to hide their wealth these days.

A bit of history... It was the Aston Martin Silver Birch that featured in the James Bond movie “Goldfinger”.

It is considered to be the most famous car in the world. Ok, so the car has never received an Oscar or other movie award, the DB5 has continued on since Goldfinger to enjoy the spotlight in a number of James Bond movies.

1964’s Goldfinger movie spotlighted the DB5 as a complete spy control center. It sported an awesome machine gun, an ejector seat, chariot-style slicing wheel and a revolving license plate.

It went on to star in such great James Bond films such as Thunderball, GoldenEye, Tomorrow Never Dies and Casino Royale.

007 just wouldn’t be the same with the appearance of such as famous co-star as the Aston Martin DB5. It has been seen on the latest James Bond movie set, shooting scenes for Skyfall. It will be the first time that the DB5 has appeared complete with super spy gear since Sean Connery manned the wheel in the movie Goldfinger.

The latest Aston Martin DB5 has kept its exceptional styling.

Under the hood quite a bit of work has been done. It hosts a DOHC straight six engine that gives more than 400 horsepower. Telescopic shock absorbers keep the drive smooth, and it can go from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 7.1 seconds.

Additional updates include new 15” wheels, Girling disc brakes and twin hydraulic brake servos. The Aston Martin DB5 Vantage received different camshafts and 3 Weber carburetors to further enhance its performance. This tie they have also added electric windows.

Finally, a convertible is also available with an additional steel hard top.

Collectors will be checking out both the car and new Bond movie very closely.

Websites

Aston Martin official website

Skyfall official website

James Bond official website

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Advertise And Promote Your Business Enterprise Via The Media Man Network

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Media Man is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. Media Man was established in 2001 by media entrepreneur, Greg Tingle.

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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Miranda Kerr David Jones Sydney - Organics Valentine's Day Event - 14th February 2012

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Fashion Sydney Australia

Today - Valentine's Day in Sydney, Australia, world famous Australian model - Miranda Kerr made an in store public appearance at David Jones Sydney to promote her range of KORA Organics product range.

Hey, even super models are entitled to have their own business ventures also, and by all accounts Miranda's KORA Organics is a high quality, customer focussed operation. Not only that, its a part family owned and operated company.

Miranda's mum, Therese, the top brass of the brand, was also on hand at today's event, however husband Orlando Bloom was not able to attend - understood to be currently working in Europe.

Miranda writes on her blog...

The KORA Team and I have put this blog together for the purpose of providing you with information on everything you might find interesting in the health and wellness industry. We are blessed to have renowned practitioners and others in all areas of health & wellness, natural medicine, nutrition, spirituality, exercise, supplements, organics, skincare, etc regularly contribute to our blog. Through the KORA Organics Blog I also get the opportunity to share information about my life; how I live, what I like to eat, where I shop, what foods and supplements I personally buy and like to take etc. My hope is to share with you my organic, healthy, natural life.

Here's some product blurb we know you've been waiting on...

KORA Organics by Miranda Kerr Rosehip Body Oil

Give the gift of luxuriously smooth skin this Valentine's Day with this Rosehip Body oil by KORA Organics. Miranda herself says, Valentines Day is all about spoiling one another and the KORA Organics Luxurious Body Oil is a beautiful gift and a great excuse for an all over body massage. It is available for purchase from KORA Organics, and to top it off, the first 150 people to buy 2 or more products in David Jones in the lead up to Valentine's Day will receive a custom made Valentine's Day card for Miranda to sign personally on the day - details can be found here.

Websites

Miranda Kerr official website

KORA Organics

David Jones

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Media Man Most Popular Slot Games: Cleopatra, Sinatra, Mission: Impossible, Rambo, The Terminator, Monopoly, Sin City, The Godfather

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PartyCasino new players get up to $3000 sign up bonus via Media Man and Casino News Media

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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Media Man Inks b2b Deal With Jackpot Party - WMS



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Media Man Inks Deal With Jackpot Party - WMS

Media Man, the world renown media, publicity and internet portal development company has today inked a b2b agreement with Jackpot Party - the online arm of gaming firm, WMS.

A Media Man spokesperson said "We are delighted to have finally got in place a b2b agreement with Jackpot Party - WMS. This adds further great value for our clients and online entertainment and gaming audience by offering a range of world class slot games such as John Wayne, Bruce Lee, The Wizard Of Oz and Star Trek."

About WMS

WMS has been a world leader in interactive gaming entertainment since Harry Williams founded the company nearly seventy years ago, in 1943. Harry invented the tilt device for pinball machines, and this revolutionized pinball machines in the United States. The company adopted this spirit of innovation and delivered it to the home video market in the 1980s and 1990s and then to the casino gaming industry beginning in the early 1990s.

Since then, WMS has become a leading supplier of innovative casino gaming machines around the world. Our portfolio of games includes many of the industry's most popular themes, including well-established titles such as Reel 'em In!®™ and Jackpot Party® (which was the naming inspiration behind the Jackpot Party site you're reading now). WMS has also brought to market world famous licensed titles such as MONOPOLY™, TOP GUN™, THE WIZARD OF OZ™, and STAR TREK™, the latter two of which are available to play online at Jackpot Party right now.

Over the last few years, WMS has emerged as the industry innovator in establishing new standards for gaming entertainment with the introduction of four revolutionary technology platforms:

Community Gaming®™
Sensory Immersion Gaming
Transmissive Reels®™ Gaming
Adaptive Gaming®™

As a result, WMS is known worldwide for creating great gaming experiences. Now, with the Jackpot Party online casino (provided by a wholly owned subsidiary of WMS in the licensed jurisdiction of Alderney) you can experience all the benefits of this innovative approach for yourself from the comfort of your own home.

Through imagination, talent and technology, WMS creates and provides the world's most compelling gaming experiences. And now, for the first time ever, these unique experiences are available to you online.

About Media Man

Media Man is a world renown media, publicity and internet portal development company. The own and operate over 20 destination website portals and were established in 2001. Media Man covers a wide array of sectors such as entertainment - celebrity, gaming, technology, business and finance, travel and lifestyle, property and community.

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Monday, February 13, 2012

The Great Gatsby Movie Set: Classic Cars Gallore Alas No Leonardo DiCaprio Today

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* (Photo credit: Eva Rinaldi Photography)

Today it was almost all hands on deck at the old site of the White Bay Power Station in Sydney's Rozelle, as about half a dozen classic cars rolled up and down The Great Gatsy set.

Producer / director Baz Luhrmann (fully recovered from his hitting his head on the boom just before Christmas) was spotted, as was plenty of security officers, a few technical folks, a bus boy, a "dogs body" and a few good looking honey wagons. The only apparent news media anywhere within a stones throw was us.

It was great to see Gatsy back in our own backyard, last month doing shooting at Manly - the northern beaches region of Sydney, with the odd scene also being completed at Fox Studios, Moore Park. We should also mention that we're not convinced that the Blue Mountains location shoot ever happened, as it was a rumour that started on the Sydney sets, but make your own minds up when you watch the movie - due to hit the big screen in Australia this coming December.

We must say that the reconstructed upper class gardens, manicured lawns, complete with water fountain, that the Gatsy hands on crew put together look just fabulous. Water sprinklers were going at full blast on the lawn set to ensure the grass maintained its lushness - reserved for fine folks like the Gatsby's.

Dozens of shots of classic cars and bikes featured in the flick were secured today.

We were glad to hear that some of the movie cast and crew took time out to frequent a couple of local cafes in the area, with crew today ducking into Balamin's Cafe 2041, and last week even Leo and friends popped into a cafe at Lilyfield. Great to see Gatsby sharing the wealth with local business enterprise.

Other Leo News...

Leo DiCaprio with Australia's Next Top Models At Sydney's Beach Haus...

If you blinked and missed it, we can report that Leo and a number of ANTMs were spotted at the exclusive Beach Haus nightclub at Kings Cross last Friday night.

Our spies think that Leo may have already moved forward from his Victoria's Secret model girlfriend Erin Heatherton. There was no sign of the said model. She's the lass who made a public appearance with DiCaprio last December last year at a UFC event at Luna Park

Australia's Next Top Model third-placed Simone Holtznagel was there, along with Montana Cox, Holtznagel was seen chatting to DiCaprio throughout the night.

Leo wore his baseball cap backwards, as per usual, and instead of hiding in the corner all night as hi often does, this time he hopped up on the couch for a brisk dance.

"He seemed pretty chilled. He was mostly texting on his Blackberry but Holtznagel was definitely the standout of all the girls trying to get his attention," advised a leak. "And she was one of the few girls he really spoke to."

Leo also spent some catch up time with good mate Lukas Haas, owner of the popular night haunt.

With girls gave plenty of attention to not only DiCaprio, but also Haas.

It's been said "Lukas and Montana left together. Leo was a little more discreet. He left unaccompanied just after 3am and a few minutes later Simone left too."

Websites

Bazmark

Leonardo DiCaprio official website

Warner Bros.

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Music News Australia

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Hollywood's Arnold Schwarzenegger And Sylvester Stallone Share Surgery Together, by Greg Tingle

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Arnold Schwarzenegger And Sylvester Stallone share surgery room

From the golden sands of Bondi Beach, to our Sydney International Airport, in Hollywood and in just about every other part of the world, the names Arnold Schwarzenegger And Sylvester Stallone are synonymous with action movies, but at the moment they are both sharing a surgery room.

Yeah, action heroes sometimes needs to take time out to heal their wounds, "The Terminator" included.

Arnold Schwarzenegger, 64, and Sylvester Stallone, 65, just got matching shoulder reconstructions and tweeted a photo of the pair in (separate) beds during their hospital stay.

It was stunt-related injuries that happened on the set of The Expendables 2 that did the damage.

In the original The Expendables it was WWE Superstar and pop culture legend "Stone Cold" Steve Austin that broke Sly's neck (for real), but these aging real life superheroes just keep coming back for more punishment.

Movie fans fear not - Arnie and Sly will soon be co-starring in another action flick entitled The Tomb.

Schwarzenergger penned on the the photo for the world to read:

@Schwarzenegger After all the action, stunts & physical abuse shooting The Expendables 2 and The Last Stand, it was time for a little tune up on my shoulder. Look who was coincidentally waiting in line behind me for his shoulder surgery. Now we're ready for another round of great times and action when we shoot The Tomb. #greattobeback say.ly/ePS1oo4

The announcement of the pair’s new film alongside the hospital photo lead some media commentators speculating the picture could be simply a publicity stunt.

A Media Man spokesperson said "I wouldn't put it beyond Sly and Arnie to orchistrate an elaborate publicity stunt. They were masters of generating massive puplicity and hype decades ago before other movie types jumped on the bandwagon. Whatever the case, well done to the Hollywood tag team. What's next? WWE WrestleMania together, with a Stone Cold stunner thrown in their for good measure - we can only hope so".

The fact Stallone also appears to have a syringe sticking out of his neck also lead some folks to suggest it was a spoof.

In their latest project, The Tomb, Stallone will play a fella who designs an inescapable high-tech prison, who becomes a prisoner after being double-crossed.

Schwarzenegger will play a friendly fellow inmate who helps Stallone in his quest.

Arnie and Sly have done numerous business projects together including in the gaming, igaming and hospitality business.

Websites

Arnold Schwarzenegger official website

Sylvester Stallone official website

The Expendables 2 official website

Broken Skull Ranch (Steve Austin official website)

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Australian Sports Entertainment

World's Biggest Gamblers; History Of Bets At Casinos - Kerry Packer, David Walsh Et Al




Lloyd Williams plays blackjack with the late Kerry Packer at Melbourne's Crown Casino

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Want to try your luck at a casino? ... Land based or online - there's all sorts of options out that, but first here's some real life stories regarding whales aka VIP high rollers at casinos, the racetrack and elsewhere.

PS: how about those Aussies - they will bet on anything won't they. World's biggest gamblers we heard.

Zeljko Ranogajec – Bookies beware! Allegedly, the world’s biggest gambler is an Australian billionaire of Croatian descent. After studying law in Tasmania, Ranogajec got a job in a casino where he learnt the tricks of the trade. Starting with an initial stake of hundreds, he went on to win millions on casino betting before turning his attention to horses. He now employs a full staff to compare odds and find him the best bets, putting around $1 billion a year on races around the world.

Kerry Packer – Staying Down Under, the late Kerry Packer was the media-mogul who was a thorn in Rupert Murdoch’s side – and a prolific gambler. This was the man who would happily walk into casinos and wager millions, supposedly losing $28 million in three weeks of gambling while in London. Another time he lost $15 million on the roulette tables, the staff saying he walked out with "no regrets". However, on his better days he has won up to $7 million in one casino betting session. There’s even a legend that Packer made a bet of $100 million dollars on the toss of a coin, but his opponent backed down.

Akio Kashiwagi – Known as ‘The Warrior’, this Japanese businessman became a casino legend before meeting a violent end. A master of baccarat, he regularly wagered $200,000 a time in US casinos, once winning $6 million in one night. However, he wasn’t always so lucky; he died in 1992 after being stabbed 150 times with a samurai sword while still owing casinos millions.

Archie Karas - Perhaps the most extraordinary of recent legendary streaks is possessed by Mr. Archie Karas, a Greek immigrant, who in 1992-1993 had one of the greatest runs in Vegas history. Starting with a borrowed stake of ten thousand dollars, Archie went on a rampage of poker at Binion's Horseshoe, defeating 15 of the world's greatest poker players in head-to-head competition, including World Champions Chip Reese, Stu Unger, Puggy Pearson, and Johnny Chan. When he ran out of poker competitors, Archie headed to the Horseshoe's craps tables where he won millions more. At one point in his run, Archie possessed all of the Horseshoe's $5,000 chips -- over 11 million dollars worth. When the run was over, Archie was up over 17 million dollars between poker and craps, all at the Horseshoe.

Betfred vs Betvictor – The names behind two of the biggest high street bookies were involved in what may have been the biggest sports betting wager in British history. Fred Done of Betfred fame and Victor Chandler of Betvictor bet on the outcome of the Premier League in 2005. Fred and Victor supported Manchester United and Chelsea respectively, so they wagered £1 million, as you do. It was Chelsea who came out on top and Done paid up in one of the best bets we’ve seen; what could be better than two sports betting giants walking it like they talk it?

Steve Whitely – Arriving by bus with a free ticket to watch racing at Exeter, 61-year-old heating engineer Steve Whitely turned a couple of quid into millions back in March last year. He didn’t bother to compare odds or make an effort to find the best bets, he just used his two pounds to make a Tote bet. A few hours later and he was minted after winning the jackpot when he correctly predicted all six of the winners. So, what is Steve’s sage advice to budding punters who want to win millions? “I like racing, yeah, but I don’t know nothing about it, do I?” Cheers Steve.

David Walsh - Not a great deal is know about this Tasmanian - Australian, but he founded MONA - (Museum of Old and New Art). Australian press has described him in a few colourful ways, such as - "multi-millionaire professional gambler and one of the nation's leading art collectors - dismisses himself as "just a privileged guy with a megaphone". He might be right. But the world is about to discover just how wonderful, disturbing, beautiful and occasionally challenging that megaphone is". In the second year of his science degree at the University of Tasmania, he was asked by friends to develop a model that would enable them to win at blackjack in the nearby Wrest Point Casino. When he discovered that the scope for winning at card games was limited he dropped out of his degree and, for most of the ’80s and early ’90s, spent 100 or more hours per week developing a mathematical model that would enable him and his partners to win at other forms of gambling, especially horseracing. This he now pursues on a large scale in a number of countries. There is a network of people involved in Walsh’s outfit, most notably his business partner of 30 years, Zeljko Ranogajec. Walsh met Ranogajec at university where the latter studied law and economics before he too dropped out to pursue a career in gambling. Walsh describes Ranogajec as a “relentless motivator and a loyal friend” who, despite not sharing his interest in art, has provided financial support for his collecting mania “whenever my cashflow dried to a trickle”. As Walsh inelegantly puts it: "I am throwing the shit, he is happy to be the fan. And he doesn’t even like the shit."

Other names whose win/loss positions move in the multiple millions in a single night include Malaysian tycoons Tan Sri Lim Kok Thay and Quek Leng Chan, Indonesia’s Putera Sampoerna, and Hustler founder Larry Flynt.

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Australian Blues Music Festival Comes To Goulburn, NSW

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Music Australia

The Australian Blues Music Festival, now in its 16th year, is one of Australia's greatest music festivals down under bar none.

The festival wasn't always as big as production as it is today.

When the fest was in its infancy it was a privately controlled one-venue event. Today it is a multi-event festival outsourced via a private management company.

The festival actually happens at a wide array of venues and consists of mainly free performances, with a couple of ticketed shows.

Over the four day duration of the fest fans, media and everyone else has a chance to enjoy some of the favourite blues performers close up.

Websites

Australian Blues Music Festival

Goulburn & Surrounds

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Sunday, February 12, 2012

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Poker News Media: Bluff Media U. S. Operations Purchased By Churchill Downs, Inc.

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Bluff Media U. S. Operations Purchased By Churchill Downs, Inc...

In a stunning late afternoon announcement on Friday, the famed equine organization Churchill Downs, Inc., announced the purchase of the entirety of the Bluff Media organization’s United States properties.

Although terms of the sale were not disclosed, the purchase by Churchill Downs, a publicly traded company on the NASDAQ stock exchange under the tag “CHDN,” is viewed as a potential move by the company to enter into the online gaming business. In the press release announcing the sale, Churchill Downs representatives state, “(It is Churchill Downs) intention to further expand and build upon Bluff Media’s current content and business model…this acquisition potentially provides (Churchill Downs) with new business avenues to pursue in the event there is a liberalization of state or federal laws with respect to internet poker in the United States.”

The sale is literally for the entirety of Bluff Media’s U. S. operations. Bluff Magazine (in both its print and online versions) and several of its blogs, forums, rankings and other URLs (interestingly, such as BluffPoker.com) will be under the new ownership, but another part of the company that was purchased may be of interest to players. ThePokerDB, one of the more reliable poker databases on the internet, will also be under the Churchill Downs twin spires.

While Churchill Downs has purchased the entirety of Bluff Media, the powers that be will remain in their current positions. Co-presidents Eddy Kleid and Eric Morris, who have been at the helm of the company since its inception, and vice president of online operations Jeff Markley all will remain with Bluff Media and continue to lead the company going forward. Foreign versions of the magazine, such as Bluff Europe, are not expected to be impacted by the sale.

The sale of Bluff Media has once again sparked consideration that the movement towards federally legislated internet poker in the United States. On the Two Plus Two forum, poster ‘oneonth3run’ asks, “Anyone in the know care to speculate what this could mean in the larger picture? They must be expecting certain things to happen at the top, and I wonder how they will utilize BLUFF going forward.”

Others in the 2+2 thread picked up the discussion as to why Bluff made this move at this time. Poster ‘AdamSmall’ stated, “Bluff was a perfect acquisition target really. They’re a US-based, US-heavy poker media company that presumably got hurt badly by Black Friday. They have a lot of reach and a good amount of history in the industry, and I think between their history and their brand name they have a lot of value still. The name Bluff is a very noticeable, reputable and easy to remember name for both current and prospective customers.”

The history of Bluff has been one of the success stories of the poker industry. Starting out as a bimonthly magazine in 2004, within a year it was published on a monthly basis. The magazine became the primary challenger to one of the venerable poker publications in the industry, CardPlayer Magazine, and also has been a partner with the World Series of Poker for its online and radio coverage.

The new partnership will be a way for one of the most recognizable names in the thoroughbred industry to enter into any potential U. S. online poker industry. The owners of the namesake racetrack which hosts the Kentucky Derby, the company also has interests in other racetracks around the United States, its own website (twinspires.com), and half-ownership in Horse Racing TV, among other items. Prior to the announcement of the purchase on Friday, Churchill Downs, Inc. closed at $55.87 on the NASDAQ exchange, a $.44 drop (.78%) from their Thursday price. (Credit: Poker News Daily)


WPT Lucky Hearts Poker Open Day 1A: Uri Kadosh, Eliyahu Levy Lead Jason Mercier...

The first of two Day Ones is in the books for the World Poker Tour’s Seminole Hard Rock Lucky Hearts Poker Open in Hollywood, Florida, with a cozy starting field that should get larger after Saturday’s play.

125 players stepped up on Day 1A, putting up their $3500 buy in for this non-televised event and, although the field was a bit smaller, there were still challenges around the room. Season Ten Player of the Year leader Will “The Thrill” Failla, reigning POY Andy Frankenberger, Jonathan Little, “The Raw Deal” host Tony “Bond_18” Dunst, Shaun Deeb and Matt Waxman were just a few of the familiar faces at the start of the day, but they would be joined by other challengers who decided to take a late registration option.

One of those tables was particularly challenging. Noah Schwartz, Christian Harder and Matt Stout all ended up on the same felt due to late registration for the tournament, while other players went about their day of work with different results. Christopher Tryba was an early casualty when his pocket Jacks failed to catch against an opponent’s pocket Aces, but former WPT champion Rhynie Campbell was able to drop Steve Levy when his Aces stood up against Levy’s K-Q.

As the players worked their way to the dinner break, the field was dramatically reduced in comparison to the time played and the low blinds. From the 125 starters, only 96 players made their way to dinner in a somewhat happy mood. Campbell was one of these eliminations at the hands of Deeb.

It was thought that this pace couldn’t be maintained but the players actually increased the rate of eliminations as the night wore on. Deeb continued to accumulate chips as, against then-chip leader Matthew O’Donnell, he was able to get O’Donnell to lay his hand down on a 6-5-5-8-9 board to move up to 95K in chips. Dunst was not as fortunate, losing with pocket tens to his opponent’s pocket eights.

The Day 1A chip leader would not be determined until the second to last hand of the night. After a short stack moved all in, Uri Kadosh (who had avoided the limelight for much of the day) made the call and tabled Big Slick against his opponent’s suited 4-2. A four came on the flop but, unfortunately for the short stack, a King was there as well. Once the turn and river didn’t bring another four or a deuce, Kadosh had eliminated his opponent to end the night over the 275K mark and reduce the field to fifty players:

1. Uri Kadosh, 275,500
2. Ely Levy, 218,550
3. Jason Mercier, 176,400
4. Omar Sider, 170,600
5. Nick Avera, 133,200
6. Michael Michnik, 121,100
7. David Tiffenberg, 112,900
8. Shaun Deeb, 112,700
9. Victor Heffesse, 111,900
10. Mike Corbett, 111,300

Other notable names that are above the average chip count (44,347) include Shannon Shorr, Matt Giannetti, Schwartz and Waxman, while Allen Kessler and Failla will have some work to do on Sunday.

Perhaps the reason for the high knockout rate on Friday was the “second chance” option the Lucky Hearts tournament provided. For those players who were eliminated on Day 1A, they could buy in again on Day 1B and take a second shot. Several players, including Todd Terry, Kathy Liebert (who commented over Twitter, “I’m on Level 3 today, I think that’s better than Level 1!”), Dunst, Little and Lichtenberger have decided to step up for that second barrel.

By the end of action on Saturday, the total field size as well as the payouts will be known for this latest WPT event. Befitting the tournament’s name, the final table will be played out on Tuesday (Valentine’s Day) and will definitely award the champion with an excellent six figure score. (Credit: Poker News Daily)


Russia’s Rinat Bogdanov Wins WPT Venice Grand Prix...

Battling through a twelve hour final table – as well as the uber-aggressive opponents surrounding him – Russia’s Rinat Bogdanov emerged as the champion of the World Poker Tour Venice Grand Prix early Saturday morning (Venice time).

When the final six men came to the table on Friday afternoon, Italy’s very own Andrea Dato held the lead with his 1.591 million chip stack. This provided him with a good lead over two other contenders, Day Three chip leader Simon Ravnsbaek (922K) and Bogdanov (905K), while the other three members of the final table – Alessandro Longobardi (558K), Andrea Carini (347K) and Gianluca Trebbi (343K) – had their work cut out for them if they were to make a run at the championship.

From the start, Ravnsbaek and Dato were the major players on the felt, pushing their shorter stacked opponents around and adding to their chip stacks. The duo would even clash with each other, with Ravnsbaek coming out on the worse end of a couple of exchanges to chop his stack from second place to fifth within the first hour of action.

After another hour of play, the first elimination would occur. After Dato raised the pot to 50K, Carini pushed his remaining chips to the center of the felt. After Dato made the call and tabled pocket eights, Carini saw that his chances were slim with an off suit A-3. By the turn, he had a gutshot straight draw to go with his Ace, but couldn’t find either on the river, eliminating Andrea Carini in sixth place.

Following Carini’s elimination, Ravnsbaek began to mount a comeback. He doubled up through Longobardi when his pocket Aces were the cooler to Longobardi’s pocket tens, then would take over the lead when he doubled again with A-Q versus Dato’s pocket eights. After three hours of play, Ravnsbaek had been from the penthouse to the basement and back again, holding a slim 200K chip lead over Dato that, unfortunately, wouldn’t last very long.

After moving all in on several occasions, Gianluca Trebbi was eliminated in fifth place when his 10-7 of hearts failed to catch against Longobardi’s pocket Jacks. Ravnsbaek’s aggressive play finally caught up with him when he pushed all in for 600K with pocket deuces and Bogdanov looked to see pocket tens in his hole cards. Once the board ran with no help for him, Ravnsbaek was out of the tournament in fourth place.

By the time the dinner break rolled around, Dato had moved back into the lead over Longobardi and Bogdanov, with the Russian’s chip stack shrinking in comparison to his two foes. Dato and Longobardi went to battle following dinner, with Dato picking up a big pot on a complete bluff to push his stack to the three million mark and drop Longobardi to just over one million.

It was at this time that Bogdanov began his charge. Basically pushing with any two cards, Bogdanov would find a double through Dato to get back into the mix. After picking up a big hand against Longobardi, the three players were virtually equal in chips.

Bogdanov would make the first breakthrough, resulting in the elimination of Dato. After Dato jammed with an unassuming K-4 off suit, Bogdanov found Big Slick in his hand and made the call. An Ace on the flop basically ended the hand and, once a blank came on the turn, Andrea Dato was out in third place and Rinat Bogdanov became the surprising chip leader.

Within two hands of Dato’s departure, the tournament was over. After losing the first hand, Longobardi raised it to 200K holding an off suit K-Q and Bogdanov made the call with only a 6-4. Longobardi caught a Queen on the flop, but there was a four there as well and Bogdanov called a bet from Longobardi. When a six came on the turn, Bogdanov made two pair and check called another bet from Longobardi. Another four on the river brought the fireworks as, after Bogdanov checked, Longobardi fired off 300K. Bogdanov moved all in and, after a moment, Longobardi made the call, only to see his Queens up vanquished by Bogdanov’s full boat.

1. Rinat Bogdanov, €229,800
2. Alessandro Longobardi, €111,700
3. Andrea Dato, €72,275
4. Simon Ravnsbaek, €52,565
5. Gianluca Trebbi, €42,705
6. Andrea Carini, €32,195

With the end of the WPT Venice Grand Prix, the tournament circuit will come back to the U. S. for their next three tournaments. Beginning today, the Seminole Hard Rock Lucky Hearts Poker Open is in action while, later in the month, the L. A. Poker Classic will be contested. In March, the WPT will visit San Jose, California, for the Bay 101 Shooting Star and, in April, the WPT will head back to Europe with a stop in Montesino, Vienna, Austria. (Credit: Poker News Daily)


2012 WPT Venice Grand Prix Day 3: Simon Ravnsbaek Leads Tight Final Nine...

It is going to be a short day at the World Poker Tour (WPT) Venice Grand Prix on Thursday. If this wasn’t the World Poker Tour, the nine players remaining might be going to bed mentally preparing for Day 4’s final table action. But this is, in fact, the WPT, and final tables here are six-handed, so Day 4 will see just three eliminations before adjourning. Bagging up the most chips at the end of Day 3 was Denmark’s Simon Ravnsbaek, proud owner of a 795,000 chip stack.

Ravnsbaek isn’t on an island, though. Alessandro Longobardi is right behind with 783,000, Andrea Dato is close with 726,000, and Jason Wheeler is sitting on a stack of 699,000 chips. In fact, it looks like it could still be just about anybody’s tournament, as all but two players have over 400,000 chips. And those two players – Rinat Bogdanov and Massimo Mosele – have 20 and 16 big blinds, respectively, so it’s not like they are already at “all-in with any two cards” mode…yet.

The story of Day 3 was arguably the fireworks that surrounded the chip leader going into the day, Marcel Bjerkmann. The fun started on the bubble when the tight Lionel Tran moved all-in for his last 50,000 chips with pocket Kings. Bjerkmann had tons of chips, so why not call with J-4 suited? Tran was still doing alright after the flop of J-T-8 rainbow, but another Jack on the turn allowed the chip leader to suckout and put everyone remaining into the money.

A little while later, after Bjerkmann had been moved to an aggressive table, he four-bet shoved on Simon Ravnsbaek with just A-4. Ravnsbaek made the call with Q-Q and doubled-up to about 330,000 chips. Bjerkmann was still doing fine, though, falling to 460,000.

After the next break, things got crazy. James Akenhead raised to 8,500 pre-flop and was called by Andrea Dato, Marcel Bjerkmann, and one other player. Upon the Qc-8h-7s flop, the players check to Dato, who bets 15,000. Bjerkmann decided to go with a check-raise to 44,000, forcing the other two players to fold before Dato called. The dealer laid out the 8d on the turn, prompting a 64,000 chip bet from Bjerkmann and another call by Dato. Bjerkmann again led out on the river for 82,000 when the 4h was dealt. Dato proceeded to ponder his move for two full minutes before calling.

As he was the original bettor, Bjerkmann had to show first, revealing he was on a complete bluff with just 5c-9c. Dato must certainly have had that beat, but it almost must have been a tough decision to call, considering how long he took to act. Right? Not quite. Dato flipped over pocket 7’s for the full house.

Bjerkmann was incensed. “That is the sickest slow roll I have ever had in my life,” he growled at Dato. “Do not talk to me dude. If you see me in the street do not talk to me.”

Undeterred, Bjerkmann kept on plugging away, but that didn’t mean he was calm. He continued to jaw at Dato throughout the night, regardless of whether or not the two were involved in a pot together (they were on more than one occasion). Eventually he succumbed to the current chip leader, Simon Ravnsbaek, as his Ah-8h could not improve against pocket 5’s.

Play will resume at 1:00pm local time as the tournament makes it down to the final table. Again, it should be a short day, as only three more players must be eliminated for that to happen.

2012 WPT Venice Grand Prix – End of Day 3 Chip Counts

Simon Ravnsbaek: 795,000
Alessandro Longobardi: 783,000
Andrea Dato: 726,000
Jason Wheeler: 699,000
Gianluca Trebbi: 474,000
Andrea Carini: 430,000
Jeremie Sochet: 402,000
Rinat Bogdanov: 201,000
Massimo Mosele: 163,000 (Credit: Poker News Daily)

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