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article imageSir Elton John took center stage at Walmart shareholders' week Special

By Kay Mathews     Jun 5, 2013 in Entertainment
Fayetteville - It's Walmart shareholders' week in Northwest Arkansas and a free concert for the associates featuring Elton John kicked-off the events. One fan said she got emotional when she realized it was a once in a lifetime event for her.
In mid-February, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. announced that its 2013 Annual Shareholders meeting would be held on June 7 in Bud Walton Arena at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, Ark.
Pre-shareholders' meeting activities include two free concerts. KNWA News reports that pairs of tickets were "available to associates on a first come, first served basis." According to 5NEWS. "Walmart accepted ticket requests on May 15th and within minutes every spot was taken by associates."
Amy Short Vincent, who, along with husband Ray, is co-owner of and photographer at Vincent Photography in Bentonville, Ark., held one of those prized tickets for the Elton John concert.
Vincent described getting the ticket in this way:
The free tickets were available through Ticketmaster for the associates. They sold out almost instantly. I am a former Wal-Mart associate, but was able to attend because my sister and brother-in-law still work there, and they managed to get 4 tickets. Only two of the tickets were in the same row, so I had to sit by complete strangers in a section by myself, but I didn't care at all, I WAS ABLE TO SEE ELTON JOHN!!
When asked for her estimate of how many people attended the concert at Bud Walton Arena, Vincent said, "There are over 19,000 seats in the arena, and it was a packed house!"
Sir Elton John performing at Bud Walton Arena.  Fayetteville  Ark.  June 4  2013
Sir Elton John performing at Bud Walton Arena. Fayetteville, Ark. June 4, 2013
Courtesy of Amy Short Vincent
This was not an abbreviated free concert. There was an opening act followed by a performance by Sir Elton lasting approximately one hour and forty-five minutes. Vincent said the concert was almost two hours in length. "Ed Sheeran was the opening act," said Vincent. "He started at 7p.m. and played for approximately 45 minutes or so, and he has incredible talent. I am certain that adorable little ginger-haired Brit made many new fans last night, including my mother! The concert was over around 9:30p.m."
Sheeran is a relatively new singer/songwriter. Sir Elton Hercules John (he was Knighted in 1998), on the other hand, has been performing since 1969. According to his official biography, "He has achieved 35 gold and 25 platinum albums, has sold more than 250 million records worldwide, and holds the record for the biggest selling single of all time."
Almost everyone has a favorite Elton John song, so I asked Vincent which one is her favorite? And, did Sir Elton sing it? Vincent replied:
He sang all the old classics, Crocodile Rock, The Bitch Is Back, I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, and he performed two favorites of mine, Candle In The Wind and Your Song. Candle In The Wind has been a favorite of mine since I was a little girl. I still can't believe I got to see him perform it live. I'm still in awe.
Sir Elton John performing at Bud Walton Arena.  Fayetteville  Ark.  June 4  2013
Sir Elton John performing at Bud Walton Arena. Fayetteville, Ark. June 4, 2013
Courtesy of Amy Short Vincent
Asked to give her overall impression of the Elton John concert, Vincent said, "The man is an icon, a true legend. To be able to see him in concert was surreal to me. It really hit me when he sang Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me. I got emotional when I realized... this is a once in a lifetime event, and it was a dream come true to be in his presence."
Luke Bryan, who performs tonight, will have some rather larger-than-life shoes to fill. But, for some country music fans, seeing Bryan perform live, and for free, will be a dream come true. And it's still a mystery as to who is Wednesday night's "special guest" performer?
More about Elton john, Concert, Walmart, bud walton arena, Fayetteville
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