Hats Off To Minnie
The Grand Ole Opry celebrates '100 Priceless Years' and the life of one of its most iconic members ever, country comedienne Minnie Pearl, with months of birthday festivities leading up to the 100th anniversary of Minnie's birth. Celebrations of her humor and more than 50-year Opry career have begun and will culminate with an Opry show in Minnie's honor on Tuesday, October 23. This show will be open to the public with a portion of ticket sales benefiting The Minnie Pearl Cancer Foundation.
Sarah Ophelia Colley was born in Centerville, TN on October 25, 1912 and became Mrs. Henry Cannon in 1947. She first appeared as the now-iconic Minnie Pearl in 1938. An executive from 650 AM-WSM saw her perform in 1940 and extended an invitation to her to appear on the Grand Ole Opry. Minnie went on to entertain generations of fans from the Opry stage as well as on television and stages around the world, joyfully shouting, “How-dee! I’m jes’ so proud to be here!” and regaling audiences with tales from the character’s fictional hometown, Grinder’s Switch, Tennessee. Though Cannon died in 1996, it was her wish that the character she had created would live forever. Thus, the plaque honoring Minnie Pearl at the Country Music Hall of Fame is inscribed with only a birth date and no death date listed.
“Minnie Pearl’s legacy is stronger at the Opry today than it’s ever been,” said Pete Fisher, Opry vice president and general manager. “We’re excited about celebrating the love and laughter the character Minnie Pearl embodies with our guests and with our partners at the Minnie Pearl Cancer Foundation. It’s going to be a fun celebration throughout the summer and leading up to Minnie’s 100th birthday in October.”
Opry House Backstage Tours - Guests on the Grand Ole Opry House Backstage Pass Tours will celebrate Minnie's 100th birthday with additions including a Minnie stand-up photo op in the "Now That's Funny" dressing room, celebrating comedians at the Opry and video clips of some of her funniest comedic moments (click here to book your tour).
Opry Performances - Opry performances will be preceded by the Opry's Minnie Pearl character being available for photos with show guests plus a variety of Minnie-related games in the auditorium before the show.
Opry House Photo Gallery - Photos depicting the life of Sarah Colley Cannon and Minnie Pearl will be on display in the lobby of the Grand Ole Opry House beginning Thurs., July 12. Be sure to stop by and take a look! Click here to see photos of country music artists tipping their hats to Minnie, and here for photos of Minnie Pearl herself.
The Opry Backstage Grill - order a strawberry shortcake birthday dessert with a look reminiscent of Minnie’s famous flowered hat! Click here for more information about the Opry Backstage Grill.
Visit Minnie Pearl on Facebook at www.facebook.com/cousinminniepearl and share your photos and memories of the Opry great!