ETCETERA - Wa-Hi alum named new manager of Las Vegas super mall

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Walla Wallans Jim and Shirley Irwin's son Gerald "Jerry" Irwin received a congratulatory letter from Sen. Harry Reid of Nevada.

The U.S. Senate majority leader wrote to Jerry, who has been named senior general manager of the Fashion Show Mall by General Growth Properties in Las Vegas, Nev.

"The impact of your work in our community is admired and appreciated," Reid noted in the June 8 missive.

Fashion Show is a 1.8-million-square-foot super regional mall, Jerry said via email. Anyone headed his way will find it on the strip at 3200 S. Las Vegas Blvd., directly across from the Wynn and Encore Hotels.

The mall has 200-plus retailers, eight restaurants and seven department stores, including Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus, Macy's, Nordstrom, Bloomingdale's Home, Forever 21 and Dillard's, Jerry said.

Compared to typical regional malls, this one is unique, with an entertainment component because of its location on the Las Vegas strip.

The name of the mall comes from its hydraulic runway, which is raised out of the floor Friday, Saturday and Sunday and a full fashion show is offered every hour on the hour.

Other events are held there, too. Miss USA Pageant contestants were hosted there recently. They had a full runway show and autograph signing. Runway shows have been hosted also for Miss America contestants, Sports Illustrated swimsuit models and Miss Universe.

He added that it is a popular site for filming, such as the Miss USA Pageant and Daytime Emmy Awards and for promo spots for Billboard Music Awards.

"We partner with various organizations to further their causes," Jerry said. "We recently were the site of the Art Institute of Las Vegas Portfolio presentation for their students. We host a fashion camp each year and we recently were part of a wish for a Make-A-Wish child who wanted to be on the runway."

Jerry was recently based in Portland for five years. He served as regional manager for centers in Washington and Oregon.

Jerry graduated in 1983 from Walla Walla High School and in 1997 from Eastern Washington University with a master's in business administration. He has been with General Growth Properties since 1997.

He and wife Leanne Hauger, Wa-Hi Class of 1983, have a daughter, Courtney, 22, a senior at University of California Riverside; and a son, Bryan, 19, who will be a sophomore this fall at Western Washington University.

"I have to say living in Las Vegas is a big change from the Pacific Northwest," he added. He and Leanne and anticipate getting involved in the community.

"I am excited to continue to move the Fashion Show forward. The center is always evolving, adding new exciting retailers and events."

Information about the mall is online at www.thefashionshow.com.

•••

Yee haw. Time to sharpen the teeth on your chainsaw, pardners. Started in 2005, this year's Logs to Frogs Chainsaw Carving Competition will be July 16-17 in Milton-Freewater.

As many as 15 teams of carvers are invited to compete in the event, said Steve Irving, Milton-Freewater City councilman and president of the Community Development Partnership.

"It's not just about frogs, this will be a Wild West-themed event," Steve said in a release.

A panel of judges will select the top three winners; a quick-carve prize is awarded daily; completed carvings will be auctioned off at the end of each day's competition; and the event will culminate when a People's Choice Award is announced.

Among the prizes are $1,000 for first place; $600 for second; $300 for third; and $200 for People's Choice.

Spectators can see the action at a gravel lot on Highway 11, across from Express Wash car wash and next to Ace Hardware.

For additional details, contact Mike Watkins at 541-938-8236, email mike.watkins@milton-freewater-or.gov; Gina Hartzheim, 541-938-8234, email gina.hartzheim@milton-freewater-or.gov; Sharame Marlat, 541-938-8235, email sharame.marlatt@milton-freewater-or.gov. On Facebook see Logs to Frogs at tinyurl.com/3leruv3.

Etcetera appears in daily and Sunday editions. Annie Charnley Eveland can be reached at annieeveland@wwub.com or afternoons at 526-8313.

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