Updated at 1:32 p.m. ET on 8/1
(CNN) – He asserted two years ago that anyone who visits Las Vegas in the summertime is "stupid," but New Jersey Chris Christie is nonetheless headed to Sin City Thursday for a speaking gig and a fundraiser with key Nevada Republicans.
Christie will attend a private event "hosted" by Sheldon and Miriam Adelson in Las Vegas on Thursday, his re-election campaign told CNN. While the Adelsons' names are on the invitation, the couple will not be attending since they're out of town, a source with knowledge of the event said. The event was first reported by the Las Vegas Sun.
Adelson and his wife were top givers to outside conservative groups in the last election cycle – he donated tens of millions of dollars to super PACs, campaign committees and candidates. He's the chairman and chief executive of the Las Vegas Sands Corporation.
Christie is running for re-election in New Jersey, though polls show him running far ahead of his Democratic rival, state Sen. Barbara Buono.
While in Las Vegas, his campaign said Christie would also speak at the meeting of the Knowledge is Power Program (KIPP), a nationwide network of public charter schools. He'll then head to the National Governors Association meetings in Milwaukee.
Nevada, aside from being the home of Sheldon Adelson, has also been a key early voting state in presidential primary contests. Christie is considered a potential candidate for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination.
If he does run, voters in the Silver State may point out the governor's 2011 remarks about Las Vegas – which he was deriding in an attempt to drum up support for his own state's gambling mecca, Atlantic City.
"There is no reason people should go to Las Vegas in the summer," Christie said. "Why would you go to the middle of the desert in the summer? You'd have to be stupid to do that."
CNN's Jim Acosta and Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.