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Press Release

Winter Classic to celebrate Cotton Bowl Stadium, Texas heritage

Football legend Aikman, Grammy winners Dan + Shay among special guests at Jan. 1 outdoor game

by NHL Public Relations @PR_NHL

NEW YORK- The 2020 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic®, the New Year's Day outdoor matchup between the Dallas Stars and Nashville Predators at Cotton Bowl® Stadium in Dallas, will include a salute to the iconic venue with appearances by Cotton Bowl Hall of Famers Troy Aikman and Ricky Williams; a special celebration of the State Fair of Texas; and musical performances by GRAMMY Award-winning duo Dan + Shay, Texas band Midland and "The Voice" winner Jake Hoot, the National Hockey League (NHL) announced today. Live television coverage of the event will begin at 12:00 p.m. CT / 1:00 p.m. ET on Wednesday, Jan. 1, on NBC in the U.S. and on Sportsnet and TVA Sports in Canada.

The transformation of the Cotton Bowl Stadium football field for the 2020 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic includes the addition of an oversized ranch entry arch featuring the NHL Winter Classic logo flanked by the Stars' NHL Winter Classic jersey crest and the Predators' sabre-toothed tiger head logo. The wood motif in the hanging welcome sign is featured throughout the stadium.

Two-time, GRAMMY-nominated band Texas band Midland will open the game day festivities with a performance. 

The formal anthem ceremony will begin with the on-field arrivals of the Stars and Predators, escorted by the Dallas Police Department Mounted Unit. Four horse riders carrying U.S., Texas, Predators and Stars flags will take the field, followed by a performance of "Star Spangled Banner" by newly crowned "The Voice" champion Jake Hoot. The Corpus Christi, Texas native is currently living in Cookeville, Tenn., and will return to his home state after his big win on the four-time Emmy Award-winning musical competition series. 

In a salute to the rich history of Cotton Bowl Stadium, Cotton Bowl Hall of Famers Troy Aikman and Ricky Williams will take part in a ceremonial puck drop.  

GRAMMY Award-winning duo Dan + Shay will perform in the first intermission presented by Ticketmaster. Dan + Shay continue their rapid rise and are taking the music world by storm. The last twelve months have seen GRAMMY, Billboard, ACM, CMT, Teen Choice, BMI, CMA and American Music Awards wins - most recently snagging two GRAMMY nominations for Best Country Duo/Group Performance and Best Country Song for "Speechless," the accumulation of four billion career streams globally, several mega-hit, chart-topping songs and more.

During the second intermission, the NHL will pay homage to the biggest attraction in Texas and most Texan place on Earth - the State Fair of Texas. Fans will enjoy some Texas-sized fun as the NHL regulation-size rink shares the field with jugglers, a rodeo clown, a sword swallower, a fire breather, trick roping and horse riding, SMU Mustangs and Texas A&M Aggies dance teams and a rodeo show. 

The boots belonging to Big Tex, the internationally known, 55-foot talking cowboy that welcomes the more than 2.5 million visitors to the State Fair of Texas each year, will sit alongside the rink, joined by a rodeo clown and longhorn steer. 

Dallas/Fort Worth-band, The 8tracks, will serve as the house band with performances throughout the game. 

The 2020 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® will mark the first NHL regular-season outdoor game for both the Stars and the Predators. The matchup on Jan. 1 continues the tradition the League established in 2008 of hosting a regular-season outdoor game at the onset of the new year. This year's game will be the 29th NHL regular-season outdoor game and the 12th NHL Winter Classic. A complete history of NHL regular-season outdoor games is available here.

Fans can join the conversation on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram by tagging their photos using NHL #WinterClassic.

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