During the summer of 2018, the Kennedy Center announced that Reba McEntire will be among its honorees for the year, part of a class that also includes Cher, Philip Glass, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Wayne Shorter, Thomas Kail, Andy Blankenbuehler and Alex Lacamoire. The only country artist on 2018's roster, McEntire will represent the genre in a group of honorees distinguished, according to a statement from the Center's president, Deborah F. Rutter, as "artists who have made enduring and indelible marks on our culture."

"The Kennedy Center Honors is a huge thrill for me," McEntire told The Boot and other outlets recently. "I have been a part of that show in helping four honorees get honored: Dolly [Parton], Lily Tomlin, Carol Burnett and Loretta Lynn. So to get to be a part of that behind the scenes all those times was a lot of fun for me, and now that I'm gonna be honored, it's the icing on the cake."

McEntire notes that the recognition is especially meaningful to her because of the Kennedy Center Honors event's breadth. Not only are artists of all varieties -- musical and otherwise -- considered for inclusion, but the Center also looks outside its honorees' careers into the additional ways they use their platforms for good.

"It takes [into account] all genres and everything you do, in the entertainment business and ... everything philanthropic; it's all that together," McEntire shares. "So it's a huge thrill for me to be honored."

The Kennedy Center Honors ceremony will take place on Dec. 2 at the Kennedy Center Opera House. The gala will be recorded for a two-hour prime-time broadcast, which will air on CBS on Dec. 26 at 8PM ET.

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