ARLINGTON, Texas – The Dallas Cowboys and The Salvation Army announced Tuesday that country music star Kenny Chesney will kick-off the 122nd annual Red Kettle Campaign as the halftime performer during the Thanksgiving Day Game on Nov. 22.
Executive vice president Charlotte Jones Anderson and Major George Hood from The Salvation Army introduced Chesney, who joins a long list of celebrities and performers who've participated in the Red Kettle Campaign, including Enrique Iglesias, Keith Urban, Toby Keith, the Jonas Brothers and Kelly Clarkson, benefiting millions of people most in need.
"It's an honor to be here at Cowboys Stadium again and to be a part of Thanksgiving Day," Chesney said. "It's been an incredible tradition that I'm really honored to be a part of. I just want to thank Charlotte and her dad and everybody for having me here."
Chesney said his goal will be to keep the halftime performance upbeat, and he doesn't expect the audience to be much different than he's accustomed to.
"I don't think we're going to come here on Thanksgiving Day and play a bunch of slow songs," Chesney said. "It's going to be a fun eight minutes or whatever it is we've got on stage. I do realize it's a very diverse audience that will be watching, but I think that definitely defines the audience we play in front of every summer, every show. We have a very smart, very eclectic audience out there."
The Cowboys have partnered with the Salvation Army for 16 years, helping raise more than $1.5 billion. Jones said the campaign raised $147 million last year, helping more than 30 million people. She said today, more than ever, The Salvation Army needs funds to help people who are now finding themselves as the door of The Salvation Army, instead of volunteering for the organization.
"Our goal has always been to raise awareness for The Salvation Army and to help them raise the needed funds to do what they do best, and that's help people in need," Anderson said.
Football's always been a lifelong love for Chesney, who recorded a No. 1 single on the country charts with his song, "The Boys Of Fall," which is about playing high school football. Chesney is also no stranger to Cowboys Stadium, having played at the venue last year. This year, Anderson said fans will also get a unique opportunity to participate with Chesney at the halftime show.
"They can do that by submitting their favorite youth video highlight of them, or their children, and get a chance to win the opportunity to come to the game on Thanksgiving, meet our entertainer, be a part of the show and have their highlight clip featured in the middle of the performance," Anderson said.
Here is the complete list of Thanksgiving Day performers for the Cowboys at both Texas Stadium and Cowboys Stadium:
2012 – Kenny Chesney
2011 – Enrique Iglesias
2010 – Keith Urban
2009 – Daughtry
2008 – Jonas Brothers
2007 – Kelly Clarkson
2006 – Carrie Underwood
2005 – Sheryl Crow
2004 – Destiny's Child
2003 – Toby Keith
2002 – LeAnn Rimes
2001 – Creed
2000 – Jessica Simpson / Billy Gilman
1999 – Clint Black
1998 – Randy Travis
1997 – Reba McEntire