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HOME > The Apprentice > All-Star Celebrity Apprentice

'All-Star Celebrity Apprentice' star Donald Trump names Trace Adkins winner, defeating Penn Jillette


By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 05/20/2013 

All-Star Celebrity Apprentice star Donald Trump crowned country music star Trace Adkins the champion of the reality competition's sixth season during Sunday night's live finale broadcast on NBC. 

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Adkins defeated comedian and magician Penn Jillette and earned $250,000 for the American Red Cross, the charity for which he was competing.

"Going into this last task, I think I delivered the best ice cream, I made the best commercial, I put on the best show, I brought in the biggest celebrities, and I raised the most money," Trace argued before Trump revealed the season's results.

"There's a Red Cross volunteer right this second helping somebody in this country."

Trace finished as the runner-up on The Celebrity Apprentice in 2008 and went 2-for-2 as project manager this season. As for Penn, whose charity is Opportunity Village, he went undefeated as project manager during the two seasons of which he participated -- this season and last year's edition.

"I thought this was a second chance. And I think you can say that since the second season started, I have been polite, energetic and nothing but pro the show. My team won more the more my ideas were used and I enjoyed every second of it," Penn said prior to learning his fate.

All-Star Celebrity Apprentice's finale began where last week's penultimate episode left off, with Trace and Penn working on their final task -- designing their own ice cream flavor for Walgreen's DeLish ice cream, making a video to launch the new flavor and finally hosting an ice cream social to promote the product. The winner of the task would ultimately raise the most money and sell the most ice cream.

However, Trump was judging his two finalists not only on their performance in and success with the final task but also their overall job this season on the show.

For the final task, Trace had the help of previously-fired contestants rapper Lil Jon, actor Gary Busey and actress Marilu Henner. Penn worked with actress and former Harry Loves Lisa star Lisa Rinna, singer La Toya Jackson and retired NBA basketball star Dennis Rodman.

When executing the ice cream task, Trace's team came up with a flavor called Maple Macadamia Mashup. Penn's team created an ice cream called Magic Swirtle, which he had described as vanilla ice cream with chocolate swirls, sea salt and chocolate caramel turtle candies.

Both finalists encountered some small problems along the way to their ice cream socials. Penn's video was about 10 seconds too long, so he had to cut it down to 60 seconds and therefore feared he might have to eliminate the punch line of his comedic skit. Meanwhile, Trace was waiting on $200,000 from NFL professional football player Tim Tebow, who was stuck in traffic and cutting it close to the task's deadline. But in the end, Penn's commercial came out just as he had hoped and Tim came through with the money for Trace.

At the ice cream social, it seemed like Penn had more of a showing at first but the few people Trace brought in were carrying big checks. Marilu described Trace's social as "quality over quantity."

Penn utilized little magic shows during his video and at the event for his guests in which, for example, he made all the ice cream's ingredients turn into the ice cream itself onstage. Penn then made the ice cream "disappear" by eating it. His social turned into a Las Vegas scene in no time, complete with showgirls, Blue men and a variety of actors and comedians.

As for Trace's social, his commercial featured Gary dancing to mashup music while eating the ice cream. Trace also performed country music live for his guests, followed by Gary getting on the microphone and singing Buddy Holly.

Trace and Penn each seemed to recognize the strengths of his opponent and therefore didn't get overly confident about potentially winning the show.

"Penn Jillette has dignity and integrity. He's intelligent and played a clean game. It's hard to argue with Penn's record. I mean, he just -- week after week after week, it was always his ideas that got used. I used his ideas! If I'm going to lose, I'm going to lose to the best. And by God, he's the best," Trace said.

"Trace looks wonderful onstage. He can really get people jumping around. There's energy there in music, you know, no one ever danced to Houdini. There could not be a harder opponent who has dignity, who has respect for other people, and Trace is all of those things," Penn noted.

All-Star Celebrity Apprentice's final boardroom session then commenced, and Trump was flanked by Ivanka Trump and Joan Rivers.

Ivanka revealed each team's pros and cons when analyzing the final task. The Walgreens executives started with Penn's team and said they loved the name "Swirtle" and the ice cream flavor itself. They also thought Penn's video was clever, the brand integration was great, the use of magic was fun, and his presentation was on point and clear. The only negative -- and Ivanka announced it was difficult for them to find any negatives at all -- was that the ice cream's packaging blended a little bit with other packaging.

In term's of Trace's performance, the executives loved the star power of Gary singing and the "Mashup" name because it appealed to a younger demographic. However, they thought maple as a flavor was too specific.

In the end, Penn raised $503,655 at his event and Trace brought in a total of $564,000.
                
However, Penn learned his ice cream flavor ended being the better seller, so Walgreens rewarded him with $100,000 for his Opportunity Village charity.

Also during Sunday night's live broadcast, Trump gave Lil Jon's charity, the American Diabetes Association, $100,000 because he explained the rapper -- who said he recently lost his mother due to complications following a stroke -- had done an excellent job this season and viewers were upset when Trump fired him. Lil Jon was thrilled about the news and brought to tears as a result of everyone's support and praise.

In addition, Trump noted this All-Star Celebrity Apprentice season raised more money for charity than any previous edition of the NBC reality competition series.



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