Friday (September 22) was a special night in country music as Reba McEntire celebrated 40 years of performing on the Grand Ole Opry stage. Rewind to September of 1977, McEntire was a brand new artist stepping onto that stage for the first time to make her Grand Ole Opry debut.
To commemorate the special event in McEntire's career, country artists Vince Gill, Carrie Underwood, and Dolly Parton gathered together to surprise her with kind words.
As stated in The Boot, Gill introduced McEntire by saying, “She's been a dear friend of mine for many, many years — 35 years we've been friends. There's not many people in life that you can guarantee they've got your back. This is one of my best friends in the world: Reba McEntire."
The night continued as McEntire looked back on highlights from her career and performed crowd favorites like “Invitation to the Blues" and “Somebody Should Leave." Later, Carrie Underwood graced the stage to join McEntire in singing her popular duet “Does He Love You."
It was only fitting that Dolly Parton said a few words, as she was a part of McEntire's debut 40 years ago. As stated in The Boot Parton told McEntire, “I could not miss this chance. I remember 40 years ago, when you made your debut, I was here for some reason, and you were supposed to have two spots on the Opry, and they gave me one of them. I just wanted to give it back to you tonight, because I'm not even going to take a spot. I just wanted to come out and say hello and congratulations." The special night ended after Underwood and Parton brought cake onto the stage and McEntire sang her hit song “Fancy."
Though the special night is over, McEntire is not slowing down. She will be back at the Opry on November 14 to host the taping of CMA Country Christmas. That same month, she will also be joining Brooks & Dunn for their Reba, Brooks & Dunn Together in Vegas residency. Not to mention, she just announced that she is partnering with Justin Boot Co. on a line of boots that will launch this holiday season.