Two Outstanding Performers Selected by Fans to Sing the National Anthem at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo

Two contest winners join list of 10 to perform at the Thomas & Mack Center


After a three-month promotion, two performers have been selected by fans to sing the national anthem at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas. The Wrangler NFR will kick off on Thursday, Dec. 7 and run through Saturday, Dec. 16.

The Wrangler NFR National Anthem Contest launched on Aug. 1. All entries had to be submitted by Aug. 25. From there, an initial fan vote narrowed the list to the Top 30 and a panel of judges narrowed the list to the Top 8 for further open voting.

From Sept. 26 through Oct. 5, fans voted on their selection of choice among the final eight entries. The 2017 winners were Doug Wade and Chelsea Gann. Wade will perform on Dec. 9, while Gann will appear on Dec. 11.

A native of Oklahoma and avid team roper, Wade makes his home with his wife Sandra on their farm in Enid. A clinically trained psychotherapist, Wade owns and operates a consulting company and is connected with The Last Resort Recovery Center in Smithville, Texas. His daughter entered him in the contest. Wade was surprised and grateful for the opportunity to perform the song that means so much to so many.

Gann, 29, is a country singer from a small town – Liberty Mounds, Oklahoma. She grew up singing in church and began performing the national anthem at public events early in high school. Over the years she has performed the national anthem at several large venues, including the BOK Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma and the Chesapeake Energy Arena, the home of the Oklahoma City Thunder. She was also featured on Season 10 of NBC’s 'The Voice' as a competitor on team Christina. She is currently the lead singer for the Dylan Whitney Band.

The full list of anthem performers includes:
Thursday, Dec. 7 – Mark Wills (also performing at the Hard Rock Hotel)
Friday, Dec. 8 – Daryle Singletary (also performing at the Hard Rock Hotel)
Saturday, Dec. 9 – Doug Wade
Sunday, Dec. 10 – Terry Fator (also performing at The Mirage)
Monday, Dec. 11 – Chelsea Gann
Tuesday, Dec. 12 – Steve Amerson
Wednesday, Dec. 13 – Military Personnel
Thursday, Dec. 14 – Reba McEntire (also performing at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace)
Friday, Dec. 15 – Ricochet (also performing at the Hard Rock Hotel)
Saturday, Dec. 16 – Lucas Hoge

Sold out for more than 300 consecutive performances, the Wrangler NFR attracts the top 15 contestants in bareback riding, steer wrestling, team roping, saddle bronc riding, tie-down roping, barrel racing, and bull riding. Under the new contract with the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association that runs through 2024, the purse in 2017 is $10 million. Qualification is based on the 2017 PRCA World Standings.