Best Local Celebrity (2008)
Every town needs a resident freak to make life interesting and keep the gossips in business. Unfortunately, Britney Spears lives in California and former sheriff Ken Jenne is incarcerated. So it was our luck when the Iceman himself moved his digs to Wellington. Every fan of The Surreal Life knows that Rob Van Winkle once resented being known as the world's first solo white rapper and serving a brief stint as the laughingstock of the music industry. But with the help of TV legend Ponch Poncherello and porn star Ron Jeremy, Ice learned to count his blessings ("Ice, Ice Baby" will remain an awesomely catchy song until the end of time). These days, he's mellowed considerably. (The domestic violence charges were dropped, people!) If you see him out — say, hanging with pal/Aventura resident Dennis Rodman, or racing one his 50 cars at Moroso Motorsports Park — he will most likely be happy to indulge you with a picture and a smile. In fact, the last time we bumped into him, he asked good-naturedly, "Remember when my pet wallaroo escaped?" (The wallaroo, Bucky, was eventually found wandering with Ice's pet goat, Pancho.) Ice has managed to extend his proverbial 15 minutes of fame. This coming year, his itinerary includes filming a reality show with racecar driver Emerson Fittipaldi and playing a Kappa Sigma frat house with the Ying Yang Twins. Last December, when he held the Vanilla Ice House Party at the local Polish Club, he was sure to include human bowling, pudding wrestling, and a real live giraffe — all while collecting toys for tots. Long live Ice!