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Exhibits to showcase Elvis' love for islands and Vegas

By Wayne Harada

LAST UPDATED: 03:08 a.m. HST, Jan 06, 2013

Elvis Presley's aloha for Hawaii and Las Vegas will be explored in two new exhibits at Graceland this year — one opening Tuesday, the other March 1.

"Elvis' Hawaii: Concerts, Movies and More!" will debut in conjunction with The King's 78th birthday anniversary Tuesday. It celebrates Presley's love of Hawaii — remember, he filmed three features here, did benefit concerts and r&r'd in a quiet vacation or two — and the exhibit marks the 40th anniversary of his "Aloha from Hawaii" concertoriginating from the Honolulu International Center Arena (now Blaisdell Arena) and beamed to the world.

Of course, "Aloha from Hawaii" will be shown here at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 14 at Blaisdell. One likely photo op for folks in attendance will be posing with the bronze statue of The King erected outside the facility by TV Land in 2007, celebrating one of TV's milestone moments/events. …

Coordinated by Elvis Presley Enterprises Inc., the Graceland exhibit will feature never-before-seen footage of the rock 'n' roll star heading to the islands on a ship, as well as excerpts from his first Hawaii concert at the old Honolulu Stadium. Jumpsuits — his signature stage gear — will be on view, many from his Hawaii show, along with other artifacts.

"Elvis: Live from Vegas" will exhibit more jumpsuits from his Sin City shows, including the first costume he wore in 1970. Hotel receipts from his Vegas stays and other show memorabilia will be shared.

Each exhibit will run for a year. …

HEAVENLY: Bruno Mars, who portrayed Little Elvis as an evolving Hawaii entertainer, made Billboard history with his "Locked Out of Heaven" hit — the first track to top the Hot 100, Radio, Digital and On-Demand song charts simultaneously. He unseated Rihanna's "Diamonds" on the Hot 100. …

STAR WATCH: Actor-screenwriter Ben Stiller, who hopes to film his"Aloha" movie with Jonah Hill in Hawaii in 2013, was paddle-boarding on Kauai's Hanalei River over the holidays.He donned a Hanalei Surf top and hibiscus-print shorts for his seaworthy trek — kind of a repeat performance of his Garden Island visit with wife Christine Taylor last August. Stiller has become a big Kauai fan since filming 2008's "Tropic Thunder" there. …

Also holidaying here: Jessica Simpson, who's expecting her second this year with fiance Eric Johnson. …

Kelly Rowland, the singer-actress and a founding member of Destiny's Child, dined at Hiroshi's Eurasion Tapasat Waterfront Plaza on New Year's Eve (along with a group including Michelle Williams, also a Destiny's Child alumna), even snapping a photo of chef Hiroshi Fukui. The party headedto Aloha Tower Marketplace for a harborside view of the fireworks, returning to the M nightclub at Waterfront Plaza to dance in 2013. …

Calendar cue: Carlos Santana returns to Hawaii for two shows, Feb. 26 at Blaisdell Arena, Feb. 28 at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center. …

WONDERLAND: Loretta Ables Sayre, the Bloody Mary of "South Pacific" fame, again hosted with hubby David Sayre a Christmas-cookies-and-champagne bash at their Mililani Mauka home. She baked more than a dozen different cookies (he's the taster), providing a wonderland of treats. A festive two-story-tall Christmas tree adorned with ornaments reflecting their travels to New York, London and elsewhere was an eye-filler.Bumped into the couple at Chai's Island Bistro on a night when Robert Cazi­mero was serenading. With so many of Robert's hula kane and wahine taking turns on stage, there were flashback moments from Christmas and Lei Day. …

And that's "Show Biz." …

Wayne Harada is a veteran entertainment columnist; reach him at 266-0926 or wayneharada@gmail.com; read his Show and Tell Hawaii blog at www.staradvertiser.com.

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