Flying Elvi to visit Carson Valley skies Monday
The King’s not dead. Just look to the heavens.
More precisely, look into the heavens around 8 p.m. on Monday when not one, but 10, Elvis impersonators will be slicing up the summer sky with trails of smoke.
To celebrate its 26th birthday, the Carson Valley Inn has hired the Flying Elvi – the famous plurality of skydivers featured in the 1992 film “Honeymoon in Vegas.”
“We’ve never done this before, and we wanted to do something to kick off the birthday celebration that could be shared with anybody who goes outside to take a look,” said CVI Sales Director Bill Henderson. “To our knowledge, this type of jump has never been done at a casino in the Valley. It seemed like something fun to draw attention to our 26th birthday while allowing everyone to share in the celebration. You don’t even have to be nearby.”
Shortly after 8 p.m., when the sun’s dipping red behind the Sierra, the Flying Elvi will break into two teams of five and successively jump from about 12,000 feet. A show of smoke-trails, aerial stunts and swift canopy turns will eventually land the team in the CVI parking lot where a 15-minute stage show will follow. Then the Elvi will head indoors for a brief appearance at the CVI Cabaret Lounge.
Flying Elvi team captain Rick Moffett, a resident of North Las Vegas, said he’s the only skydiver left on the team who starred in “Honeymoon in Vegas.”
“I made my first jump when I was 16 years old,” Moffett said by phone on Tuesday. “It was Oct. 16, 1976. I was the youngest jumper in Nevada. We had different equipment in those days, military-type round parachutes. I’ve seen quite an evolution in the sport of skydiving over the years.”
Strangely enough, Moffett will be spending his 50th birthday in the skies above Minden.
“Unfortunately, this is not something that supports a salary sometimes,” he said. “Everyone on the team has a regular job. Some are full-time skydiving instructors, but almost everyone has some kind of job. I’m a fifth-grade teacher.”
Moffett said his students are aware of his extracurricular activities. Besides “Honeymoon in Vegas,” Moffett was a Russian paratrooper in the 1984 war film “Red Dawn.”
“My students thinks it’s cool that I get to jump out of airplanes and stuff,” he said.
When it comes to wearing the flashy suit and long sideburns of the King, Moffett said he enjoys Elvis’ songs but is not a diehard fan.
“I first moved to Vegas when I was 12, and I got to see Elvis at the International,” he said. “I understand the history and value of what he did. You got to appreciate his talents. It’s like with the Beatles. If Elvis didn’t do what he did, then we wouldn’t be where we are at musically.”
The Flying Elvi show is only one element of CVI’s birthday bash. The festivities will continue on Tuesday with cash drawings, helicopter rides and free cake and champagne from 2 to 3 p.m. and again from 7 to 8 p.m.
“Business has been good,” Henderson said. “Locals are definitely responding to our increased promotions, and this (the Flying Elvi) is a way to give back, to do something everyone can enjoy.”
For more information about CVI, visit http://www.carsonvalleyinn.com.
For more information about the Flying Elvi, visit http://www.flyingelvi.com.