Visiting Nashville should go hand in hand with visiting the Grand Ole Opry. In a sense Nashville is the Opry and the Opry is Nashville. It is such a big part of the history of the city and has so many amazing stories to tell about all of the performers who have graced the stage.
We have 4 young kids (all under 10 years old) so before going we verified that kids are welcome. We got a resounding YES. And they were right, it was a great place to bring your family too!
Backstage Tour Of The Opry
We started the day by doing a backstage tour of the Opry. It was a really cool experience. Seeing where all the stars walked in and hearing that most of the artists drove their own car in was unexpected. The tour guide was amazing and we could tell he was passionate about his job and that he had been there for quite a while.
You definitely got the feeling that the Grand Ole Opry has a family vibe to it and that everyone that worked there was part of the family. They showed us where the fan mail comes for the members of the Opry and the wall showcasing all of the members.
One of our favorite parts was seeing the dressing rooms where the stars get ready before the show. The designs of the dressing room and all the memorabilia and pictures told the history of the Opry. We also hung out in the Green Room pretending we were the next big stars to go on stage.
Throughout the tour you stop to watch videos telling the history of the Opry and seeing how some of the members go their invite into the Opry. Definitely felt a lot of chills watching those videos and seeing the reactions as people received their invites.
We learned about the flood that brought 4 feet of water into the Opry. And saw the line on the wall showing how high the water had been and how devastating it was. Then to see it rebuilt to its current glory was amazing.
The final part of the tour brought us on stage. Yes you read that right. ON STAGE at the Opry!! We got to stand in the wood circle – the same circle where all of the stars stand and sing when they perform at the Opry.
One of our kids even got to hold the microphone and pretended like he was singing live at the Opry. Doing the tour added a whole different element to seeing the show later that night. If you plan to go to the Opry I highly recommend the backstage tour.
I wasn’t prepared for how emotional I would feel walking back stage and learning all about the Opry. There were multiple times I had goosebumps and even a few times when I almost teared up. I think the overall vibe of the Opry and all the amazing performers and history that is there plus our tour guide, who you could tell was passionate about it, added to my overall feelings.
Grand Ole Opry Show
Throughout the show (which is all LIVE on the radio) there are a handful of performers that come on stage. Some perform 2 songs, some 3 and the last performer does the longest set. All the seats at the Opry are church pews which left plenty of room for our family to sit and for the kids to stand up, walk around, and jump on our laps.
As the show started it was fun to look at all 4 of our kids and see there eyes glued to the stage as they saw the live music being performed. The kids didn’t know who the performers were, but they could sense what a cool experience this was and were enamored with the live performance.
As performer after performer came on stage you could feel how each one of them felt so much honor to be up on stage at the Opry. All of the performances were amazing and we were dancing right along and really enjoyed the variety of country music that was performed.
The Opry was definitely right when they said they are family friendly. All of the workers were so helpful and nice – no dirty looks for bringing kids in – which believe me does and has happened to us at other places. The seating was great as it felt like we were all sitting together on a nice big couch which made it easy to snuggle our kids during the show and allowed them room to maneuver around. We all know kids don’t like to sit still!
There is a short intermission which gave us time to run to the bathroom and grab some popcorn for the second half. We were also able to get a few glasses of tap water for free – with a family of 6 free is always nice!
All 4 of our kids (the youngest is 5) made it through the whole show and all of us really enjoyed it! As the show was wrapping up I thought about how glad I was that we had attended the Opry and that we finally felt like we had really experienced Nashville. There is a lot of talent and history at the Grand Ole Opry and it is one of those places that you should experience at least once, if not more, in your life!
Things to know about the backstage tours and the show:
- There are 3 options for the backstage tour – Pre-show, Post-show, and VIP tour. We did the Pre-show tour. You can learn more about the other tours here.
- The pre-show tour was just under an hour and included all walking and standing. However you didn’t walk that far. And the timeframe was perfect for younger kids.
- Between the pre-show backstage tour and the Opry show there is a couple hour break. This was perfect timing to head over to the Opry Mills Mall to grab some dinner. They have a variety of dinner options to choose from.
- You can start going into the show at 6pm. The show starts at 7pm.
- If you want to get a picture in front of the large guitars do it after the pre-show tour since there aren’t any lines. If you wait until before the show there will be a line to take pictures by the guitar.
- There is a concession area in the Opry that sells beer, wine, drinks, soda, popcorn, etc. You can bring all of these items into the show.
- In the middle of the show there is an intermission.
- You can park for free in the Opry Mills Mall parking lot.
- At the end of the show the streets are lined with taxi’s in case you didn’t bring a car to Nashville.
Buy your tickets for the Opry here: https://www.opry.com/
Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by the Grand Ole Opry. All opinions expressed are my own. #truth
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