Toby Keith, Demi Lovato, Luke Bryan Kick Off RodeoHouston 2013

Moments ago, the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo announced its first four non-George Strait entertainers for the 2013 season: Toby Keith (February 25), teen stars Demi Lovato and Austin Mahone (March 3), Jason Aldean (March 11) and Luke Bryan (March 16).

As usual, the rodeo is offering two pocket-sized season ticket packages for those who don't want to go whole hog. Keith and Lovato/Mahone are part of Option A; Aldean and Bryan belong to Option B. Upper-level ticket prices start at $154 for A and $146 for B.

Mini-season and season ticket packages are on sale now by phone at 832-667-1080 and the show's offices on the second floor of Reliant Center. Tickets for individual nights go on sale January 12, after the remainder of the entertainer lineup is unveiled January 7.

Unlike recent history -- Kiss, Janet Jackson, Kid Rock, Black Eyed Peas -- three country stars and a teen-pop double bill is pretty standard operating procedure for the rodeo. If there is a Kiss-like curveball to come, it will have to be in January. The other spots on the rodeo's schedule are earmarked for "country," except March 14 for "pop" and four marked "TBD." Black Heritage Day (Friday, March 1) and Go Tejano Day (Sunday, March 10) are not part of either mini-season ticket package. On "Value Wednesday," upper-level tickets start at $10.

Still, anything can happen. This past May, the rodeo announced George Strait will close the 2013 season with a concert featuring Martina McBride and the Randy Rogers Band on Sunday, March 17. The bulls and broncs get a break that day.

RodeoHouston begins February 25, not counting the parade, barbecue cookoff, etc.

See more information at www.rodeohouston.com. The rodeo has just revamped its Web site, which is worth a visit all by itself. Very nice. There's even a page for the sheep dog trials.

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