POP STARS of all stripes hit the Wells Fargo Center last night for Q102's annual Jingle Ball, including comparative music-industry vets like Avril Lavigne, and newcomers like Swedish duo Icona Pop and neo-Bieber Austin Mahone, who clearly needs to up his diva game. When I asked what his biggest extravagance has been so far, he gave a decidedly sweet answer.
"This summer, I played a lot of state fairs and Six Flags," said Mahone, who stopped by Pat's King of Steaks before the show. "I got to cut all the lines for all the rides. I rode Kingda Ka twice," he said, referring to the coaster at Six Flags Great Adventure in nearby Jackson, N.J. "No lines. People were so pissed."
Other stars had fond memories of Philly. Q102 morning man Elvis Duran (who is based in NYC) reminisced about his old apartment at 4th and Spruce in the early '80s. "I could always tell which one it was because it had the eviction notice outside," Duran said. Things are a bit better now for Duran, who hops on Amtrak for a taste of the Israeli delicacies at Zahav (237 St. James Place).
Rapper Flo Rida preferred to show his local appreciation via his wardrobe, taking to the red carpet decked out in Flyers gear. Some of his first shows were in Philly in venues around South Street.
Other acts' memories of the city were, well, decidedly stranger. "We were riding in our friend's car, and we're driving along. We've got the green light; cars keep coming. We're all yelling, 'What the hell?!' " said Fall Out Boy's Patrick Stump. Right as I'm about to apologize for Philly's colorful drivers, he continues: "Turns out, it was a funeral procession. Yeah, we all hid our faces after that."
"Out of the Furnace," the new revenge-tinged crime flick starring Christian Bale, Casey Affleck and Zoe Saldana, hits theaters tomorrow, but it has local roots. Co-writer Brad Ingelsby is not only an Archbishop Carroll alum and 2002 Villanova grad, he's also a scion of Big Five basketball legend and former Carroll coach Tom Ingelsby. Brad's brother, Martin, played at Notre Dame.
Don't forget, new Philly faces will appear on the fourth season of VH1's "Mob Wives," now subtitled "New Blood" to reflect the Philly-fied shake-up. Funeral-parlor owner to the Mafia Natalie Guercio and boutique owner Alicia DiMichele Garofalo will make their debuts tonight at 10. Both Guercio and Garofalo will be attending the premiere party in NYC with the ladies from Staten Island.
* Speaking of Philly-related reality, Southampton's Karly Cleary debuted on Oxygen's tattoo-themed "Best Ink" last night. The hippie tattooer works at Hatboro's Davidian Tattoo Studio (13 E. Montgomery Ave.). The Pete Wentz-hosted competition airs at 10 p.m. Wednesdays.
Going through Philadelphia International Airport, between Terminals E and F, this holiday season? Stop by "I'm in Philly," a new photo exhibit from local photographer Scott Weiner, who has gotten famous faces like John Travolta, The Rock and Patrick Swayze to hold up a sign made by his daughter that reads, "I'm in Philly." Former Gov. Ed Rendell (who is in the exhibit with bud Bill Clinton) and the Hooters' Rob Hyman and Eric Bazilian (who are also pictorially repped) will be on hand tomorrow with Weiner to cut the ribbon for the exhibition.
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