After months of anticipation, the "country music party of the year" is finally here - the 58th Academy of Country Music Awardsare happening tonight, Thursday, May 11, at the Ford Center at the Star in Frisco.
All the stars have arrived, rehearsed, and some even started celebrating early with fans. Having a little FOMO already? There are actually tickets left, starting around $400 via SeatGeek.
Whether you're heading to Frisco to attend the big show in person or cracking a beer and watching from your own couch, here's a complete guide to the event. Cheers, y'all!
Where and when: The ACM Awards will take place at Ford Center at The Star in Frisco, the practice facility for the Dallas Cowboys (address: 9 Cowboys Way, Frisco). The 2023 edition will mark a return to Texas for the first time since the landmark 50th ACM Awards, which took place at AT&T Stadium in Arlington in 2015.
Official festivities (those being broadcast on air) start at 6 pm with a Red Carpet. The Awards Show itself gets started at 7 pm.
Don't miss the chance to shop at the Dolly Parton pop-up store, which disappears after this week.
Getting there: No matter where you're coming from, allow plenty of time to get there. WFAA published this handy guide to traffic, rideshares, drop-off spots, and parking. One big tip, they report: "The City of Frisco is already warning about traffic. Officials said to avoid the area around The Star and Hall Park because of road closures in the area all day." Here are some preferred routes to take to The Star.
Watching live and watching later: The ACM Awards will be free to stream live exclusively on Prime Video and the Amazon Music channel on Twitch (it'll also stream for free the next day on Amazon Freevee). Amazon explains how to find and watch the show here. More tips on tuning in via Roku, Fire TV, Apple TV, and more streaming services here.)
For those more inclined to join via social media, you can follow the Academy of Country Music on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok, join the conversation with #ACMawards.
Who's hosting the show: Country music icon Dolly Parton will grace the stage for the third time as host of the American Country Music Awards, and she's bringing along a newcomer: Garth Brooks. It's his first time to host and awards show. Although Parton will be closing the show with a performance of a song from her new rock album, Brooks is not expected to perform.
Who is performing: The show is as much concert as it is awards presentation. The star-studded lineup of performers includes: Jason Aldean, Kane Brown, Luke Combs, Cody Johnson, Miranda Lambert, Jo Dee Messina, Ashley McBryde, Dolly Parton, Jelly Roll, Cole Swindell, Keith Urban, The War And Treaty, Lainey Wilson, and Bailey Zimmerman.
Special collaborations include Carly Pearce and Trisha Yearwood; Ashley McBryde featuring Brandy Clark, Caylee Hammack, Pillbox Patti, and John Osborne; Cole Swindell and Jo Dee Messina; and solo performances by this year’s top nominee HARDY and ACM Male Artist of the Year nominee Jordan Davis.
English pop superstar Ed Sheeran also will make his ACMs debut onstage.
Who's not performing: Country music "bad boy" and reigning ACM Album of the Year winner Morgan Wallen had to cancel his appearances at the last minute due to illness. On Tuesday, May 9, Wallen posted to social media a video explaining that doctors had put him on vocal rest and he'd be canceling shows for six weeks - including his ACM-related appearances. Wallen had gotten top billing on "ACM Lifting Lives LIVE: Morgan Wallen & Friends," a fundraiser at Topgolf in The Colony on May 10. He had to cancel that performance, and Jason Aldean stepped in. He also will not be performing on the awards show.
Who's nominated: Who isn't nominated? A complete list of nominees is here. The superstars up for the biggest award of the night, Entertainer of the Year, are: Carrie Underwood, Chris Stapleton, Jason Aldean, Kane Brown, Luke Combs, Miranda Lambert, and Morgan Wallen. Best of luck to all!
CultureMap will have a recap of all the winners on Friday.