July 30, 2014
SPARKS, Nev. (AP) - The famous Golden Rooster that spent a half century at John Ascuaga's Nugget in Sparks is headed for auction this summer with an estimated value up to $300,000.
Nugget spokeswoman Lauren Garber told the Reno Gazette-Journal the 14-pound rooster sculpture made of 18-karat gold was recently removed from the hotel-casino but remains personal property of the Ascuaga family. The Nugget was sold to a private investment group last year.
The rooster is listed in the Coeur d'Alene Art Auction set for July 26 at the Peppermill.
It was unveiled in the Nugget's Golden Rooster Room in May 1958.
Federal agents charged the casino two years later with violating a law prohibiting individuals from possessing more than 50 ounces of gold unless it was deemed art. A federal jury in Carson City determined in 1960 it qualified.