By Judy Thorburn
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Owner/Editor in Chief/writer - Las Vegas Round The Clock
Owner/Editor in Chief/writer - The Flick Chicks
Director of Communications - Nevada Film Alliance

Kenya Rugby Team Honored with Welcome “Meet & Greet” Reception at Planet Hollywood

WATU & Co. held a welcome ‘meet and greet’ reception on Thursday February 11, in honor of the visiting Kenya rugby team attending the USA Sevens International Rugby Tournament that was held in Las Vegas for the first time.

The semi-private welcome reception took place at the ‘Living Room’ at Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino, and was attended by approximately 120 invited guests and fans which included representation by Kenyan Rugby Sevens Team Management, a USA Sevens representative, as well as Kenyan professionals in the Diaspora and other influential guests from Las Vegas’ hospitality industry. The reception was also an appreciation for the team, their efforts and successes thus far, and an opportunity for guests to meet and mingle the Kenyan Rugby Team and management.

Upon the arrival of the team representatives, a Kenya Rugby Sevens Team liaison introduced Oscar Osir (Team Manager), Benjamin Ayimba (Team Coach), Felix Ochieng (Assistant Coach), and Sydney Ashioya (member of Kenya Rugby Sevens Team). Also in attendance was Kenya’s Rugby Football Union general manger Auka Gecheo, as well as Ray Peterson, Managing Director USA Sevens LLC.
Auka Gecheo, Oscar Osir, Felix Ochieng, George Mokuasi
(Osir addresses guests)

Oscar Osir, Auka Gecheo, Felix Ochieng, Ben Ayimba

Sydney Ashioya, Auka Gecheo, Oscar Osir, Felix Ochieng, Benjamin Ayimba, George Mokuasi, Pastor Nickson Mwangi (prayer for the team)

Auka Gecheo, Oscar Osir, Ray Peterson (USA Sevens), Benjamin Ayimba (Peterson speaks to the guests)

Front: Auka Gecheo, Oscar Osir, Felix Ochieng, Ray Peterson (USA Sevens), Benjamin Ayimba, George Mokuasi; Back: Don Owino with Top Donn Entertainment - Chicago and Martin Lowenthal with VegasbyNyte
(Peterson speaks to the guests)
Following the introductions, Team Manager Oscar Osir, took to the microphone thanking everyone for coming and expressing gratitude for the support of the team.

Las Vegas Kenyan Pastor Nickson Mwangi then shared a word of prayer and prayed for the team as they took on the field over the weekend. This prayer was then followed by the Kenyan National Anthem, with the flag of the Republic of Kenya showcased on the screen, and all guests upstanding and singing the national anthem in unison.

“This being the first year the tournament is being held in Las Vegas made the reception the perfect platform to help us showcase our Kenyan Heritage, and welcome the Kenyan Rugby team and fans to Las Vegas,” said Catherine Chege of WATU & Co. which is based in Las Vegas and dedicated to creating culturally immersed experiences by providing products, services and solutions in event management, catering, marketing and travel consultancy service.

The evening reception concluded with Raffle Prizes such as complimentary hotel stays, show tickets, gift bags etc. from local hospitality industry partners.

The premier rugby event in North America, USA Sevens International Rugby Tournament, was held on February 13-14 2010 featuring sixteen nations competing in forty-four matches over two days at Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas, NV. Showcasing the best rugby players in the world, USA Sevens features national teams from all over the world, including Kenya’s very own Kenya Rugby Sevens team.

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