Just one week after I announced the overdue naming of a street after him, the Elvis Presley Exhibit and Show at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort and Casino has closed its doors and seems in jeopardy. The Exhibition covered about 2,800 square feet and included more than 300 items from Graceland. There was allegedly a ten year contract backing the attraction but it has closed after just ten months.
The Westgate issued a statement:
“The operator for the Elvis Presley Exhibit and Show has notified us that they are ceasing operations of the Graceland West Exhibit and Graceland Chapel. We consider their actions to be a default of our agreements and will pursue all legal means possible to recover the significant monies owed to the property. We are saddened that the group who currently holds the license for representing the exhibition and performance of Elvis Presley has acted in a manner that is both capricious and potentially harmful to the persona of Elvis, and we send our condolences to the legions of Elvis fans who share our love and admiration of this iconic music legend.”
The company that ran the Westgate Elvis exhibit countered with one of their own:
‘Elvis Presley Enterprises (EPE) is deeply concerned with the aggressive actions taken by the Westgate Las Vegas Resort due to a third-party dispute of which EPE is not a party. On Friday, February 26th The Westgate seized, without any legitimate legal basis, hundreds of treasured Elvis artifacts on loan to the exhibition from the Graceland Archives. At the same time, Westgate staff forcibly removed employees from the exhibition and disabled the video feed from security cameras. Despite our wishes to retrieve these artifacts and return them to Graceland, the Westgate is currently preventing staff from accessing the exhibition space to pack up and bring home these priceless pieces of history, which are owned by EPE and the Presley family. While EPE does not have a contractual relationship with the Westgate, we have no choice but to pursue all legal means necessary to ensure the return of our artifacts immediately.’
So there you have it. The great man will be squirming on his toilet in the sky.