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. 1 and run through Saturday, Dec. 10.
The Wrangler NFR National Anthem Contest launched on Aug. 3. All entries had to be submitted by Aug. 24. Entries were received from 28 states. 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. 28 through Oct. 5, fans voted on their selection of choice among the final eight entries. The 2022 winners were Presley Seal and Candace Muir. Seal will perform on Dec. 4, while Muir will perform on Dec. 8.
A 12-year-old cowgirl from Caldwell, Idaho, Seal competes in junior rodeos and ropings, and enjoys riding and spending time with her friends and family. She was asked to sing the national anthem at the Snake River Stampede in Nampa, Idaho for the first time when she was eight years old. She loves to sing the anthem and has performed a total of three times at Nampa, as well as the Canyon County Fair, Caldwell Night Rodeo, Idaho Cowboy’s Association Finals, the Reno Open Roping and All-Girl, as well as many other junior rodeos, barrel races and jackpots. Her goal was to sing at the Wrangler NFR someday, and that dream will become a reality in 2022.
Muir, a native of Waynesfield, Ohio, has been performing for many years and enjoys singing anytime she gets a chance. She has performed the national anthem at many national cattle shows, cattle sales and other small events. Muir is a former graduate of The Ohio State University where she obtained her B.S. in zoology and a minor in music. She was a member of The Ohio State University A Capella group as well as a former singer in two local country bands.
On the professional side, she currently is a co-owner/herdsman of her family cattle and hay operation and a custom show cattle fitter. In addition, she assists in managing Graze On, her family-owned catering company. Muir won the NFR National Anthem contest last year. However, she was involved in a life-threatening accident just weeks before and was unable to perform.
The full list of anthem performers includes:
- Thursday, Dec. 1 – Easton Corbin (also performing at Cowboy Revival at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas)
- Friday, Dec. 2 – Glen Templeton (also performing at Cowboy Revival at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas and Rodeo Vegas at The Mirage)
- Saturday, Dec. 3 – Dan Smalley (also performing at Cowboy Revival at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas)
- Sunday, Dec. 4 – Presley Seal, Contest Winner
- Monday, Dec. 5 – Will Jones (also performing at Cowboy Revival at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas)
- Tuesday, Dec. 6 – Wyatt McCubbin (also performing at Cowboy Revival at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas)
- Wednesday, Dec. 7 – Jim McCloughan
- Thursday, Dec. 8 – Corb Lund (Canadian anthem); Candace Muir, Contest Winner
- Friday, Dec. 9 – Drake Milligan (also performing at Cowboy Revival at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas)
- Saturday, Dec. 10 – Maggie Minor
Known as the richest and most prestigious rodeo in the world, 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 to compete for a share of the increased purse and the coveted PRCA Gold Buckle. In 2021, the event had a total attendance of 169,539 over the 10 days of competition at the Thomas & Mack Center and has sold out more than 340 consecutive performances in Las Vegas.
For more information on the Wrangler NFR, please visit NFRexperience.com or through social media at /LasVegasNFR and use #WranglerNFR. For the latest PRORODEO news and Wrangler NFR TV Schedule, please visit WatchNFR.com or through social media @PRCA_ProRodeo.