Politics & Government

George Strait to play Texas inaugural ball; here’s how to get tickets

The 2019 Texas Inaugural Ball Jan. 15 just became a very hot ticket.

Country singer George Strait will perform at the Palmer Events Center in Austin to help usher Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick back into office for a second term.

Strait and fellow star Aaron Watson will perfom for the “boots-and-black-tie-optional’ inaugural party.

Tickets will go on sale at 10 a.m. Jan. 4 at 2019texas.com/tickets. The price has not been announced

It’s expected to be higher than the $75 price for Abbott’s first inaugural gala, which starred Pat Green and Lady Antebellum.

Last month, Strait and promoters announced a concert next fall at the new Dickies Arena in Fort Worth.

Strait and Western swing band Asleep at the Wheel will perform Nov. 22, 2019.

Strait announced his retirement in 2014 and ended it with a “Cowboy Rides Away” tour in Arlington. But he has performed select shows since then, and also announced a March 30 stadium concert in Atlanta with Chris Stapleton.

The $540 million arena is being built in partnership between the city of Fort Worth and Event Facilities Fort Worth, a private group led by Fort Worth billionaire Ed Bass that has benefited the Fort Worth Stock Show at the Will Rogers Memorial Center. The city’s portion of the project, approved by voters by special referendum in 2014, is capped at $225 million.

Construction began in February of 2017. The Beck Group is the general contractor. The facility is expected to be completed in late 2019, in time for the January 2020 Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo.

The new 14,000-seat multipurpose arena is expected to be one of the region’s top tourist draws. Already, the arena will host the 2022 NCAA men’s basketball first and second rounds and the NCAA women’s gymnastics championships beginning in 2020.

This story includes information from Star-Telegram archives.

Columnist Bud Kennedy is a Fort Worth guy who covered high school football at 16 and has moved on to two Super Bowls, seven political conventions and 16 Texas Legislature sessions. First on the scene of a 1988 DFW Airport crash, he interviewed passengers running from the burning plane. He made his first appearance in the paper before he was born: He was sold for $600 in the adoption classifieds.