Concerts and cowboys: NFR events guide 2011

The Pistol Annies: Miranda Lambert, Angaleena Presley and Ashley Monroe

In addition to all of the actual sporting events going on at the Thomas & Mack Center, the National Finals Rodeo brings a lot more boot-scootin’ fun to town for the next week and a half. Grab your Stetson and boots and check out one of the many concerts, bar specials and autograph signings to enhance your NFR experience.

Friday, December 2:

Colt Ford: Country singer and former pro golfer Colt Ford performs at the House of Blues at Mandalay Bay. Look forward to hits like "Cold Beer," "Chicken & Biscuits" and "Country Thang." Catch him nightly from Dec. 1-5.

NFR dining specials: Cabo Wabo Cantina in Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood will offer special discounts for all NFR fans. Sammy Hagar’s Mexican cantina will "go a little country" from Thursday, Dec. 1 through Saturday, Dec. 10 with rodeo deals. NFR fans can enjoy 10 percent off their meal when they present their NFR ticket stub. Multiple high-definition televisions throughout the restaurant and bar will broadcast all the rodeo action.

NFR Cowboy Christmas Gift Show: If you're looking for the perfect gift for that hard to buy for cowboy on your lists, look no further than the NFR Cowboy Christmas Gift Show at the Las Vegas Convention Center. The event is free and open to the public.

NFR dining specials: PBR Rock Bar & Grill hosts a National Finals Rodeo party running from Friday, Dec. 2 through Sunday, Dec. 11. Guests can receive 10 percent off their entire dining bill at PBR Rock Bar & Grill by presenting their NFR ticket stubs.

Ron White: Ron White, best known as the cigar-smoking, Scotch-drinking funnyman from the Blue Collar Comedy Tour, will perform his hilarious stand-up comedy inside the Terry Fator Theatre at the Mirage Dec. 2, 3, 9 and 10.

Crown Royal Gold Buckle Zone and NFR shopping experience: For the fourth consecutive year MGM Grand is “Home of the Champions” as the resort hosts more than 25 cowboys throughout the 10 days of competition. Guests can watch the telecast live each night inside the Hollywood Theatre. MGM Grand unveils a unique shopping experience, open from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. inside the Marquee Ballroom, featuring more than 60 of the most popular rodeo brands including Wrangler, Cinch, Roper, Ariat, Justin, Resistol, Stetson, Tony Lama, Circle Y Saddles, Classic and Cactus, among others. The Crown Royal Gold Buckle Zone located at Centrifuge will feature live music, dancing, shows, drink specials and drawings plus eight-time All-Around World Champion Trevor Brazile’s championship gold buckles and saddles will be on display. This area opens nightly at 9 p.m. and runs until 3 a.m.

Brantley Gilbert: Vocalist and guitarist Brantley Gilbert specializes in country-rock music. Catch him on Dec. 2 and 3 at Veil Pavilion at the Silverton. Look forward to tracks from his albums Modern Day Prodigal Son and Halfway To Heaven.

Garth Brooks.

Garth Brooks.

Garth Brooks: Legendary country music singer Garth Brooks has come out of retirement for a series of special shows at Encore Theater at Wynn. He's the top selling solo artist of the 20th century, according to the Recording Industry Association of America and will be bringing hits like "The Thunder Rolls" and "Friends in Low Places" to the Las Vegas Strip.

Clint Black: Country star Clint Black performs a special two-night engagement at the Golden Nugget Dec. 2 and 3 featuring songs like "Good Run of Bad Luck" and "A Better Man."

Lee Ann Womack: Country superstar Lee Ann Womack takes the stage at the Orleans Showroom for a three-night stint from De. 2-4. The country popster has made a name for herself with popular crossover tunes like "I Hope You Dance."

Jake Owen: After opening for the likes of Little Big Town, Sugarland, Kenny Chesney and Brad Paisley, country artist Jake Owen is the main act. Catch him on Dec. 2 and 3 at Ovation at Green Valley Ranch. Look forward to songs like "Yee Haw," "Startin' with Me," and "Something About a Woman."

Live NFR entertainment at the Extra Lounge: Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino's Extra Lounge presents music from Evenflow on Dec. 2 and 3, from 7–10:30 p.m. Country rock band, South of Graceland, will perfrom from 11 p.m.–3 a.m. on Dec. 9 and 10. Evenflow returns on those days as well, performing from 7–10:30 p.m. followed by Marshall Reign from 11 p.m.–3 a.m.

Saturday, December 3:

Babes and Buckles party: Crazy Horse III offers a complimentary drink for NFR enthusiasts who present their Thomas and Mack ticket stubs at the club on Dec. 3. DJ CLA provides the sounds during this rodeo after party.

Grand opening celebration: Southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd has opened a Texas-style barbecue restaurant at Excalibur and will celebrate with a ten-day grand opening party during NFR. The entertainment lineup is a follows: • Dec. 2 at 10 p.m. – Southern Rockers • Dec. 3 at 10 p.m. – Colt Ford • Dec. 4 at 10 p.m. – DJ Silver • Dec. 5 at 9 p.m. – Official American Country Awards After Party • Dec. 6 at 10 p.m. – Felice Garcia • Dec. 7 at 9 p.m. – Lynette Skynyrd (all-girl Lynyrd Skynyrd cover band) • Dec. 8 at 9 p.m. – Lynyrd Skynyrd Benefit Concert • Dec. 9 and 10 at 10 p.m. – Felice Garcia.

Madame Tussauds Wax Museum: Rodeo fans wearing cowboy boots are encouraged to visit Madame Tussauds from Dec. 2 – 10 to receive half-price adult general admission tickets. To receive the discount, visitors must be wearing cowboy boots when purchasing tickets at the box office.

Pistol Annies: Miranda Lambert's all-female trio performs at the House of Blues. The country star is joined by Ashley Monroe and Angaleena Presley, both of whom are accomplished solo artists and songwriters. Look forward to hits like “Hell on Heels” and “Boys From the South.”

Flamingo's Mechanical Bull: Guests can live out their NFR dreams by riding the mechanical bull outside the south entrance of Flamingo Las Vegas from 3–9 p.m. on Dec. 3, 4, 9-11. Patrons will win a free beverage for riding the bull, and those who can stay on for eight seconds or longer will win official NFR gear. For additional information, call 733-3111.

Sunday, December 4:

Rodney Carrington: Stand up comedian Rodney Carrington blends comedy and music in his acts and that combination has led him to sell millions of comedy albums. He recently co-wrote and starred in the film Beer for my Horses alongside Toby Keith. Catch him Dec. 4-10.

Travis Tritt: You'll be in "T-R-O-U-B-L-E" and kicked out of the "Country Club" if you miss Grand Ole Opry performer Travis Tritt when he does a two-night stint at the Golden Nugget Dec. 4-5.

Surprise country concert: A surprise chart-topping country music star will perform at Carnaval Court outside Harrah's. The name of the performer is still under wraps but don't miss this chance for a fun outdoor concert right on the Las Vegas Strip.

Monday, December 5:

American Country Awards at the MGM Grand: Hosted by Trace Adkins and Kristin Chenowith, the two-hour prime time special is the only country music awards show that gives fans the opportunity to vote for their favorite artists not only in traditional categories but also in previously unrecognized areas of the business such as touring. The American Country Awards will also feature performances and appearances by the year’s chart-topping country artists.

Tuesday, December 6:

Miss Rodeo America Pageant: The Miss Rodeo America Pageant takes place throughout the week of NFR. The Horsemanship Competition is free and takes place at the Excalibur from 8:45 until 11:30 on Monday. The competition continues at the MGM Grand Convention with a WNFR luncheon from 12:00-1:45 p.m. Tuesday. On Wednesday, the pageant continues at MGM Grand's Studio B from 8-11:30 a.m. On Thursday, the action starts early with a president's breakfast at the MGM Grand Convention center. A ticket is required for this event. The pageant continues Friday at the MGM Grand Hollywood Theatre with the contestants' speech and media interview portion from 8-10:15 a.m. then the contestant introductions and the foundation auction featuring the contestants takes place later in the day Friday at the Las Vegas Convention Center from 1:30-4:30 p.m. This event is free and open to the public. Saturday is the Alumni Hall of Fame breakfast at MGM Grand's Studio B and a ticket is required. The week-long event concludes with the coronation ceremony at the MGM Grand Hollywood Theatre. A ticket is required for this event which begins at 1 p.m. then the meet and greet session following the event is free and begins at 3:30 p.m.

Clay Walker at The Golden Nugget: Country artist Clay Walker will bring his hits like “The Chain of Love,” “I Can’t Sleep,” “Rumor Has It” and “Fall” to the Golden Nugget.

Chris Young: The Nashville Star winner went on to record hits like "Drinkin' Me Lonely" and "You're Gonna Love Me" following his time on the show. Catch him over the course of three nights at the House of Blues from Dec. 6-8.

NFR autograph signings: More than 25 cowboys, including eight-time All-Around World Champion Trevor Brazile, will sign autographs in the lobby of the MGM Grand on Dec. 6 and 8 from 2-3 p.m.

Wednesday, December 7:

Tanya Tucker: Country legend Tanya Tucker takes the stage at the Golden Nugget with her hits like "What's Your Mama's Name?," "Blood Red and Goin' Down," "Lizzie and the Rainman" and "Strong Enough to Bend."

Thursday, December 8:

Bill Engvall: Blue Collar Comedy star Bill Engvall will be performing live at the Treasure Island Theatre. The star of TBS' The Bill Engvall Show will be doing his hilarious stand-up comedy routine on Dec. 8 and 9.

Merle Haggard: Merle Haggard heads to the Golden Nugget for a two-night stint to perform his hits like "Okie from Muskogee," "The Fightin' Side Of Me" and "Mama Tried."

Las Vegas Weekly NFR party: The Las Vegas Weekly is gettin' down at Gilley's for an NFR party. Guests can enjoy complimentary cocktails from Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey. It's also ladies night so gals can enjoy $1 well drinks and draft beer. All locals can enjoy half price bull rides. $2.50 draft beer, two-for-one cocktails, 20% off of Gilley's BBQ and $20 bottomless PBR draft beer. Please RSVP here.

Friday, December 9:

Designer Georg Roth's trunk show: Known for his men’s dress shirts, designer Georg Roth will make an appearance at Mojitos at Wynn Las Vegas to sign his limited edition shirt collection designed specifically for country music singer Sean Patrick McGraw who will be performing in the store at the event.

Charlie Daniels Band: The legendary Charlie Daniels Band, best known for the hit "The Devil Went Down To Georgia," will perform at the Orleans Showroom for a two-night stint.

Gary Allan: The country singer is performing performs at House of Blues on Dec. 9 and 10. The raspy voiced country crooner will play some of his older favorites and tunes off his newest release, Get Off on the Pain.

Trace Adkins: The country singer and Celebrity Apprentice star performs at the Royale Pavilion at the Riviera in support of his new album Proud to be Here.


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