If there is one thing my friends know about me, it is that I am a huge Paul Brandt fan. I listen to country music all year long, not just leading up to Stampede…and Mr.Brandt is likely my fave artist of all.  So last night, I was just like a kid on Christmas eve waiting for the TransAlta Grandstand show to begin. (after enjoying 9 heats of action packed Chuckwagon Racing at the GMC Rangeland Derby!) This show is certainly a celebration of our Western values, embodying this city for a CENTURY.

Past ‘Eye in the Sky’ announcer Joe Carbury came to life on the projection screens to welcome the crowd- having been a Chuckwagon fan since I was a little girl, I was so delighted that he was included in the show. His iconic voice is one you will not soon forget. Easily one of my fave songs Paul sings is Alberta Bound so when this song started, I was ecstatic! I am sure the people standing beside me thought I was a little crazy. I can’t help it, I’ve got #stampede100 fever.

One of the best additions to the show this year are the amazing video montages of our past 100 years of history- produced by an old family friend of mine, Jamie Nesbitt. Again, just one more reason for me to be so proud of our community and how much we have accomplished together.

When Paul sang the new single “You”, I had tears in my eyes.  World champion hoop dancer Dallas Arcand entered via a gorgeous, glowing eagle as he soared down thru the crowd and onto the stage. The moment was so incredibly beautiful- this paid respect to the First Nations people who have been a large part of our Stampede history. I have since purchased the song and have been listening to it on repeat all morning.

The Young Canadians performed flawlessly as always, gearing up for the large finale where the fireworks commence: a huge birthday cake arrives and we all gather to sing Happy Birthday to the Stampede!

Honestly- if you’re still in the midst of your Stampede planning, you absolutely cannot afford to miss out on this historic show. Advance tickets are now sold out, but a limited number of tickets for each night’s performance will go on sale that day at 11 a.m. Click here for tickets.

…and speaking of sold out tickets, our committee just so happens to be giving away a pair of GMC Rangeland Derby and Evening Show tix to one lucky twitter follower so check out my blog from earlier today to find out more. Good luck!