As the month of August begins, let's take a look at past Opry moments that took place in August.
Several Grand Ole Opry members are celebrating Opry anniversaries in August, including 2 of the members who have been Opry members the longest:
>Jimmy Dickens joined the Grand Ole Opry in August 1948. This year marks his 61st year as a Grand Ole Opry member. Jimmy is one of the most treasured and loved Opry members in history. He is the last link to the earlier days of the Opry, and along with Kitty Wells, represents the last of that era of country music entertainers. Jimmy will be 89 years old later this year. Hearing him on the Opry in recent months, it is obvious that his voice is slipping a bit, especially on the ballads, and he has forgotten some names. But, when telling stories or talking to the guests, his voice is clear and strong. There is no one left like a Jimmy Dickens in country music today. Enjoy him while you can.
>Jimmy C. Newman joined the Opry in August 1956. This year marks his 53rd year as an Opry member. Whenever he comes on stage with his Cajun Country Band, he always receives a great reception. His music is bouncy and fun to listen to. He remains a popular member of the Opry.
The other members celebrating Opry anniversaries in August are:
>The Osborne Brothers-August 8, 1964(45 years).
>Vince Gill-August 10, 1991(18 years).
>Jim Ed Brown-August 12, 1963(46 years).
>Roy Clark-August 22, 1987(22 years).
>Trace Adkins-August 23, 2003(6 years).
>Pam Tillis-August 26, 2000(9 years).
The following Opry historical moments took place in August:
>August 11, 1952, Hank Williams is fired as a member of the Grand Ole Opry. He was officially fired for failing to show up for scheduled shows, but Opry management was tired of his eratic behavior and drinking. After leaving the Opry, he went back to Louisiana and rejoined the Hayride. Of course he died on New Year's Day 1953.
>August 1959, Skeeter Davis became an Opry member.
>August 17, 1967, Charlie Walker joined the Opry. He would remain a member until his death late last year.
>August 1985, Johnny Russell joined the Grand Ole Opry. He would later become the primary host for the 11:30 segment of the Opry. On most Saturday nights, that was the only show he performed.
>August 10, 2002, The Dixie Chicks performed as guests on the Opry. During the televised portion of the Opry, they made the announcement that Porter Wagoner and Bill Carlisle has been elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame. In the case of both of these individuals, it was a long overdue honor. Porter, in fact, had made several comments over the years regarding his thoughts on not being a part of the Hall of Fame, and watching others go in ahead of him. Porter was never shy about voicing his opinion on the country music industry, and many felt that this delayed his election to the Hall.
>August 31, 2002, the Opry celebrated its 4,000th consecutive Saturday night broadcast. During the show, the Opry paid tribute to one of its most beloved members, Minnie Pearl. Steve Wariner received the Minnie Pearl Humanitarian Award during the show. This was not the 4,000th consecutive performance of the Opry, as on April 6, 1968, the Opry was forced to cancel its Saturday night show due to a curfew in Nashville following the assassination of Rev. Martin Luther King. WSM broadcast a previously taped show that night.
There you have it for the high points in August in Opry history.