Shining Brighter than Ever in its 25th Year, Gaylord Opryland's 'A Country Christmas' Brings Wonder and Memories - Beginning November 14

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For 25 years it has been hailed by many as a shining example of the best Christmas entertainment available.

For 25 years it has been hailed by many as a shining example of the best Christmas entertainment available. Even the Travel Channel called Gaylord Opryland Resort "the most Christmassy hotel in the nation." This year the unrivaled event that has made memories for literally millions of people from around the world will celebrate in silver. This year marks the 25th anniversary of A Country Christmas, and close to 1 million visitors will enjoy new shows, stunning decorations and the return of everyone's favorite Gaylord Opryland Christmas traditions.

A Country Christmas, presented by Nissan, begins Nov. 14, 2008 and runs through Jan. 4, 2009, at the resort in Nashville, Tenn. The event includes more than a dozen shows and attractions.

"This year we are celebrating on an even larger scale because of our Silver Anniversary. For example, we are thrilled to have Louise Mandrell join our family this year, bringing her energy, talent and passion for the holidays to our new dinner show," stated Pete Weien, senior vice president and general manager, Gaylord Opryland Resort and Attractions. "This IS the most Christmassy resort in the nation, perhaps even the world. We will do everything in our power to create smiling faces and eyes filled with wonder from the time our guests arrive until they leave in order to make the memories truly remarkable."

"I'm very excited about joining Gaylord Opryland in their 25th anniversary. I worked the Grand Ole Opry both at the Ryman and new Opry House when I was growing up. My first production show was at the Acuff Theater at Opryland," explained country music artist Louise Mandrell. " I feel at home at the Gaylord Opryland Resort. But, I think they make everyone feel that way."

New this year:

  •     Louise Mandrell's 'Joy to the World' Christmas Dinner & Show (click here for release)
  •     Winter Wonderland (click here for release)
  •     Breakfast with the Grinch
  •     Rockabilly Christmas
  •     Tim Watson's Tennessee Christmas (click here for release)

The Louise Mandrell's 'Joy the World' Christmas Dinner & Show runs Nov. 15 through Dec. 25, 2008. Straight from her popular theater in Tennessee's Smoky Mountains, Mandrell is giving Christmas at the resort a whole new feel during the dinner show. She and her band will perform traditional Christmas music, dancing and comedy all while guests dine on a delicious holiday meal with all the trimmings.

Winter Wonderland will be one of the holiday "hot spots" for families and friends alike this year. Held in the resort's Ryman Exhibit Halls, this beautiful wonderland features many activities for "kids" of all ages, like Photos with Santa, Treasures for the Holidays Crafts Show, Hall of Trees display and a charity fund-raiser, a Christmas train and the return of Gingerbread Corner with gingerbread decorating classes taught by elves. Winter Wonderland begins Nov. 23, 2008.

Breakfast with the Grinch will help families get the day started with one of Christmas' most beloved characters. The furry green guy himself will greet children and adults alike for photo and autograph opportunities during
breakfast in the resort's signature Ristorante Volare, located in the Garden Conservatory Atrium. Breakfast with the Grinch is held during A Country Christmas from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. Reservations are strongly suggested.

Gaylord Opryland is the only place in the world where the beloved Christmas story, How the Grinch Stole Christmas! by Dr. Seuss, is being retold in frozen form. ICE! featuring How the Grinch Stole Christmas! will run in its final year Nov. 14, 2008, until Jan. 4, 2009. Starting at the Grinch's frozen mountaintop lair, to the 20-foot high slides for kids and built-in photo opportunity stops, down to the picturesque Who-ville, complete with feasting Whos, ICE! featuring the How The Grinch Stole Christmas! will make even the coldest of hearts grow three sizes. ."(Click here for ICE! release).

Back by popular demand this year, the timeless tradition of the Radio City Christmas Spectacular® returns to Nashville, where the Rockettes will call the Grand Ole Opry House home this holiday season, Nov. 14 through Dec. 28, 2008.    The "eye-high" kickers' production will feature a variety of magical scenes including the legendary "Parade of the Wooden Soldiers," the awe-inspiring "Living Nativity" and Nashville's favorite tap-infused "12 Days of Christmas."(Click here for Radio City release).

Jump, jive and wail to the swinging sounds of Rockabilly Christmas! Take a ride down memory lane as all of the rockin' Christmas classic tunes of the 1950s come alive in the Cascades atrium complete with a live band, dancing girls, floating icebergs and Santa's lost sleigh in the waters of the Cascades Atrium throughout A Country Christmas.

Also, enjoy the holiday festivities while cruising the Cumberland River aboard the General Jackson Showboat, as two different shows celebrate the holidays in rockin' ways with NashVegas on the River and Tim Watson's Tennessee Christmas. Both General Jackson Christmas shows run Nov. 14 through Dec. 25, 2008.

The romantic horse-drawn carriage rides that explore the grounds and the larger-than-life Outdoor Nativity will be back, along with the lavish decorations and more than 2 million lights that put a visit to the resort on the top of many Christmas lists.

"Nissan is delighted to announce its renewed sponsorship of this year's A Country Christmas at Gaylord Opryland," says Ben Poore, vice president of Nissan marketing. "We continue to support the Nashville community and are proud to help celebrate the 25th anniversary of one of the most spectacular displays of holiday lights in the country. The sponsorship is a unique way for Nissan to connect with consumers on a very personal level throughout the holiday season."

To download photos of some of these events, please visit http://www.gaylordoprylandsales.com/christmas/press-acc

Don't miss the chance to be a part of the 25th anniversary of A Country Christmas. Vacation packages are available with two- to three-night options. To make reservations or for more information on A Country Christmas events, please visit http://www.gaylordopryland.com or call 1-888-999-OPRY (6779).

ABOUT "A COUNTRY CHRISTMAS"
Gaylord Opryland's 25th annual "A Country Christmas®" presented by Nissan is proud to present ICE!™ featuring How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss. This is the Only SHOW like it in the USA! From the Grinch's frozen mountain top lair, to the interactive slides and surprises, this life-sized story told in ice will make even the coldest of hearts grow three sizes. The Radio City Christmas Spectacular® presented by Allstate® Insurance Company, starring the world-famous Radio City Rockettes® is back with dazzling costumes, brilliant choreography and favorite scenes, such as the "Living Nativity" and the "Parade of the Wooden Soldiers." There's Louise Mandrell's'Joy to the World' Christmas Dinner & Show; NashVegas on the River and Now That's A Country Christmas with Tim Watson aboard the General Jackson® Showboat, Winter Wonderland featuring Treasures For The Holidays craft show, Santa's E-mail, Hall of Trees, Gingerbread House-Making classes; and Carriage Rides and nearly two million Christmas lights. It's everything Christmas and all at Gaylord Opryland.

ABOUT MADISON SQUARE GARDEN
Madison Square Garden, L.P. is owned by Cablevision Systems Corporation,and includes the New York Knicks (NBA); the New York Rangers (NHL); the New York Liberty (WNBA); the Hartford Wolf Pack (American Hockey League); MSG Entertainment, which includes concerts and events at Radio City Music Hall, Madison Square Garden, The WaMu Theater in Madison Square Garden, the Beacon Theatre, as well as the legendary Chicago Theatre,; and which manages wholly-owned live entertainment properties including the Radio City Rockettes and the Radio City Christmas Spectacular, MSG Media, which is comprised of MSG and MSG Plus, and MSG Interactive, which oversees all company wireless and online initiatives; Fuse, the music television network; and the Madison Square Garden arena complex, located in the heart of the New York metropolitan area.

ABOUT NISSAN NORTH AMERICA
In North America, Nissan's operations include automotive styling, engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and manufacturing. Nissan is dedicated to improving the environment under the Nissan Green Program 2010, whose key priorities are reducing CO2 emissions, cutting other emissions and increasing recycling. More information on Nissan in North America and the complete line of Nissan and Infiniti vehicles can be found online at http://www.NissanUSA.com and http://www.infiniti.com.

ABOUT DR. SEUSS ENTERPRISES, L.P.
Executive Vice President Susan Brandt heads the Dr. Seuss Licensing and Marketing office. The primary focus of the office is to protect the integrity of the Dr. Seuss books while expanding beyond books into licensed merchandise. The licensing effort is a strategic part of the overall effort to strengthen and protect the relationship consumers have with Dr. Seuss characters. Theodor Geisel (Dr. Seuss) said he never wanted to license his characters to anyone who would "round out the edges." That is one of the guiding philosophies of Dr. Seuss Enterprises.

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