News And Notes
Jan 11

Betty White’s Smartest Animals in America Premieres Jan. 17

Betty White's Smartest Animals in America Premiere

Get to know some of Betty’s favorite and fascinating critters.

One of America’s favorite actress-comediennes, Betty White, makes her Great American Country debut this week on a two-part special. Premiering on January 17, White’s 93rd birthday, Betty White’s Smartest Animals in America follows the nonagenarian animal lover on her journey across the U.S. as she discovers the most talented, intelligent members of the animal kingdom.

White’s passion for animals of all sizes and species brings her face-to-face with a playful dolphin, an African bull elephant and precious tiny pigs. She also reunites with a longtime friend, Koko the Gorilla, who uses sign language to converse with humans.

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Posted at 6:15 pm | Permalink
Jan 11

6 College Championship Snacks

Surf 'n Turf Jalapenos

The first College Football Playoff National Championship game is set, pitting the Oregon Ducks against the Ohio State Buckeyes. The game will take place at AT&T Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys, at 8:30 PM ET on January 12. As football fans across the country gather at parties and tailgates, here are a few Championship-themed recipes to serve and share.

Candy Bacon. These dates stuffed with almonds and then brushed with maple syrup are easy to put together and sure to be a hit with the pigskin crowd. Kimberly Schlapman’s Candy Bacon recipe »

Surf ‘n Turf. Not enough bacon? Shrimp wrapped in jalapeños and bacon will satisfy anyone who likes things a little spicy. Lisa King’s Surf ‘n Turf Jalapeños recipe »

Chicken Wings. For a sweet and spicy wing that falls right off the bone, it’s Krystal Keith’s Grilled Honey Sriracha Chicken Wings. Just don’t forget the napkins.

Homemade Potato Chips. Every tailgate or playoff party has bagged chips of one variety or another, so add homemade to the mix with these crunchy slices and your dip of choice. Homemade Chips recipe »

Sliders. Dish out pulled-pork sandwiches to stick with the evening’s appetizer theme or make them part of a later main course. Pulled-Pork Recipe »

Buckeyes. If you’re cheering for Ohio State, a platter of buckeyes is a no-brainer. These chocolate and peanut butter treats are great for dessert — and it will be hard to eat just one! The Secret Sisters’ Grandma’s Buckeyes recipe »

Will you be watching the Ducks and the Buckeyes? Who will you be cheering for? And what will you be serving?

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Posted at 7:00 am | Permalink
Jan 10

Elvis Presley’s Luxury Planes Up for Auction

Inside Elvis Presley's Lisa Marie Plane

Inside the Lisa Marie. Photo courtesy of Julien’s Auctions.

Fans can now travel like Elvis Presley — if they have the extra cash. Julien’s Auctions will auction off two of Presley’s private planes, the Lisa Marie and the Hound Dog II. The “King of Rock and Roll” frequently used the Lisa Marie, named after his daughter, as his preferred mode of air transportation.

Photos of Elvis’ Beverly Hills Home »

Presley purchased the plane in 1975 for $250,000 and refurbished it to include sleeping quarters, a penthouse bedroom with a custom-made queen-sized bed, an executive bathroom with gold faucets and gold wash basin, a videotape system linked to four televisions, a stereo system with 50 speakers and a conference room. Including renovations, the total cost of the plane totaled more than $600,000.
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Posted at 7:00 am | Permalink
Jan 9

Carrie Underwood Tops First Top 20 of 2015

Carrie Underwood's Something in the Water Tops the Chart

Photo courtesy of CarrieUnderwoodOfficial.com.

The first Top 20 Country Countdown of 2015 is in the books! Carrie Underwood continued her run at No. 1 into the new year, topping the charts with “Something In The Water.” Chris Young kicked off the year strong, debuting at No. 2 on the countdown with “Lonely Eyes.” Blake Shelton, featuring Ashley Monroe, rounded out the Top 2 with “Lonely Tonight.” Plus, host Nan Kelley sat down with Lee Ann Womackto discuss her new album.

Top 20 Photo Gallery »

Want to re-watch some of your favorite interviews? Get Top 20 online extrasincluding videos and photos. You can also cast your votes and take a look at the current chart to see where your favorite videos land.

This Week’s Chart

  1. Carrie Underwood – “Something In the Water”
  2. Chris Young – “Lonely Eyes”
  3. Blake Shelton w/Ashley Monroe – “Lonely Tonight”
  4. Tim McGraw – “Shotgun Rider”
  5. Josh Turner – “Lay Low”
  6. Brad Paisley – “Perfect Storm”
  7. Sara Evans – “Put My Heart Down”
  8. Lady Antebellum – “Freestyle”
  9. Dierks Bentley – “Say You Do”
  10. Blake Shelton – “Neon Light” Continue Reading

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Posted at 5:30 pm | Permalink
Jan 9

Military Wives Create Handbags From Upcycled Military Material

R. Riveter Handbags Made from Upcycled Military Materials

Photo courtesy of rriveter.com.

Military spouses are known for showing their grit and that’s exactly what two of them, Cameron and Lisa, did when they couldn’t find steady employment due to ongoing moves. Instead of feeling sorry for themselves, these military wives rolled up their sleeves and went to work, creating the R. Riveter line of handbags, inspired by the World War II symbol of female strength on the home front, Rosie the Riveter.

“R Riveter started in 2011,” the company’s Colleen Horigan said. “The founders, Cameron and Lisa, started in a garage in Georgia,” creating handbags from upcycled military materials.”

Learn more about R. Riveter »

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Posted at 7:00 am | Permalink
Jan 8

Shaky Boots Festival is Coming to Georgia

HTMLBlake Shelton

While it is cold outside, warmer weather is right around the corner and with it comes music festival season. A brand-new event, Shaky Boots Festival, will take place May 16-17 in Kennesaw, Georgia, and feature Blake Shelton, Brad Paisley and Dierks Bentley as headliners.

Additional performers include Rascal Flatts, The Band Perry, Dwight Yoakam, Sara Evans, Kristian Bush, Joe Nichols, Old Crow Medicine Show, Justin Moore, Eli Young Band, Kip Moore, Jana Kramer, Josh Thompson, Jason Isbell and more than a dozen other acts on three stages throughout the festival. Shaky Boots is the sister festival to Atlanta’s Shaky Knees rock festival, which will take place the week before. Continue Reading

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Posted at 7:00 am | Permalink
Jan 7

Tim McGraw and Faith Hill’s Tennessee Farm Still on the Market

Tim McGraw, Faith Hill

Photo courtesy of Fridrich & Clark Realty, LLC.

Remember Tim McGraw and Faith’s Hill’s beautiful Tennessee farm they put on the market in 2013? It is still on the market — at least, some of it is. The couple sold approximately 17% of the land to a couple from Texas who paid $3 million for 131 acres and plan to build a home there.

See more photos of Tim and Faith’s Farm »

According to The Tennessean, the remaining 621 acres are still for sale for $18.5 million and can be bought as a whole, or split into two parcels. Both parcels include homes and additional out-buildings. One log cabin on the property dates back to the mid-19th century, and there is also a 12-stall barn with a caretaker’s residence, as well as Beechwood Hall, an antebellum home.
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Posted at 5:00 pm | Permalink
Jan 7

Go Backstage at the Grand Ole Opry with Keith Urban

Keith Urban

Keith Urban photo courtesy of Capitol Nashville.

Keith Urban is a very proud member of the Grand Ole Opry. Although he has played the historic stage countless times, he still looks forward to the moment when he steps up to the iconic microphone. He recently took cameras backstage before one of his Opry performances and tried to explain what it’s like to be an Opry member.

“It’s like becoming a father,” he said. “You can explain it, but you can’t explain it, until you actually become one. Being an Opry member, it feels very much like that for me.”

Watch Urban backstage — and on stage — at the Grand Ole Opry below. Continue Reading

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Posted at 12:05 am | Permalink
Jan 6

Go Inside The Dallas Cowboys’ Motor Home

The Dallas Cowboys' Tour Bus

The Dallas Cowboys are making their way through the NFL playoffs and are traveling in style while they do. The Cowboys’ motor home provides a luxurious place for the team’s executives and coaches to meet, relax and prepare for game time. Featuring the team’s iconic star logo, it’s hard to miss the Dallas Cowboys’  home when it rolls down the highway.

See photos of the Dallas Cowboys’ Motor Home »

The rolling tribute to one of America’s most popular teams includes no less than nine TVs, luxury seating, zebra wood cabinets, and hardwood floors. Priceless memorabilia is on display throughout the motor home, showcasing some of the team’s greatest moments. The kitchennete includes a granite countertop and, of course, custom Dallas Cowboys drinking glasses. Continue Reading

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Posted at 7:00 am | Permalink
Jan 5

Maddie & Tae and RaeLynn Name Their Idols

Maddie & Tae

Photo courtesy of www.maddieandtae.com.

Nearly everyone has a celebrity he or she looks up to, including young country newcomers Maddie & Tae. If they were able to sit down with any celebrity, past or present, they would jump at the opportunity to talk with a couple of strong, successful women.

“I wanna sit down with Marilyn Monroe,” Tae Dye said. “Back then, she was beautiful and perfect and nowadays she’d be considered a ‘Plus Size’ model, which is ridiculous. She’s gorgeous and she’s smart and intelligent.”

Maddie Marlow would welcome an opportunity to have a conversation with Dolly Parton. “Just to see how she has been so poised throughout her whole entire career, but still like a…take-no-prisoners, very strong independent woman,” she said. “I would love to get some advice from her.”

Take the Dolly Parton Quiz »
Tune in to Backstory: Dolly Parton »

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Posted at 10:26 pm | Permalink