Drayton leaves Fox 29

Thomas Drayton's five-year run with Fox 29 ended late last week. He has not said where he's going next.
Thomas Drayton's five-year run with Fox 29 ended late last week. He has not said where he's going next.
Posted: July 17, 2013

 THOMAS DRAYTON said goodbye to Fox 29 on Friday after five years with the station. The former nighttime anchor (and Sexy Single, of course) replaced Dave Huddleston at the desk in 2008.

"It has been a pleasure. You guys are unbelievable, talented, wonderful to work with," Drayton told Mike Jerrick and Sheinelle Jones of "Good Day Philadelphia."

"We want to thank Thomas for his many contributions to our station, as he was an important part of our news team for several years. We wish him success in the future," Jim Driscoll, vice president and news director, said in a statement.

Drayton was moved from the evening slot to the 4:30-to-6 a.m. shift in May. He was replaced by relative newcomer Iain Page. At the time, reps from Fox told me that they were just switching around the schedule, but sources within the station voiced concerns about Drayton's job.

A rep from Fox says the split with Drayton was amicable. Drayton has not announced where he's going next.

Dance, dance revolution

The 76ers will hold the final auditions for their 2013-14 Dream Team at 7 p.m. tomorrow at Parx Casino. Fans (the 21-and-older variety, of course) are encouraged to come and cheer on potential dancers.

Judges include "Top Chef" Season 7 winner (and head honcho at the totally delish Sbraga) Kevin Sbraga; Mike Jerrick of "Good Day Philadelphia"; "The Apprentice" contestant and QVC host Erin Elmore; 97.5 The Fanatic's Sean Brace, Jon Marks and Devon Givens; Parx Casino's Marc Oppenheimer, and . . . would you look at that?! Yours truly.

Tattoo you

Jackie "Ink Bitch" Jennings, a tattoo artist at Bristol's Tru Blu Tatu, will show off her skills on Season 3 of "Ink Master," a reality competition where tattoo artists vie for skin-art supremacy. The show premieres at 10 tonight on Spike.

Jennings, who has 11 years' experience, said she joined the cast of the show after her mom, who was diagnosed with cancer two years ago, was given a time frame by doctors. "The best part about being back is seeing the look on her when she talks about it," said Jennings, adding that being on the reality show gave her profession a legitimacy in her mom's eyes.

Jennings said her work runs the gamut, but people seek her out for her black-and-gray portraiture. When we chatted, she was working on three sleeves with Philly themes, including the sports teams and even an image of Geno's Steaks.

But there are few things Jennings won't do. First, all of her art must be original, she refuses to do flash. The second is a little less PG: "I think the penis tattoos are the most ridiculous," Jennings said. "Luckily, I don't have to do things I don't want to do. Certain things aren't worth putting my artistic name on it."

Five or Bust

Dave & Buster's in Plymouth Meeting will celebrate its fifth anniversary Thursday beginning at 5:30 p.m. Donations, which go to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, are $35 and net you apps, unlimited beer and wine, a game card for unlimited game play, live entertainment by the WMGK house band " The Sofa Kings" and a silent auction. For tickets, call 610-832-9200.


If you're hitting the Eagles concert tonight at the Wells Fargo Center, check out Nasty Habits, featuring the People Paper's Chuck Darrow on bass. They'll play classic rock from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Cure Insurance Club in the concourse.


* White Sox pitcher Hector Santiago dined at Geno's late night on Saturday after his stint against the Phillies. In tow were his agent, Brian McCafferty, his fiancee and friends. Word on the street is he even took six, count 'em six, cheesesteaks home with him.

Email: eichelm@phillynews.com

On Twitter: @PhillyGossipDN

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