Dolly Parton Jokes Her Husband Was ‘Jealous’ of Her Cheerleader Outfit

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    Dolly Parton’s Dallas Cowboys cheerleader costume quickly became one of her most iconic looks, but no one was more impressed than her biggest fan: her husband.

    Parton, 78, revealed that her husband, Carl Thomas Dean, approved of the sexy outfit she rocked on Thanksgiving 2023, but he had one note.

    “It turned out pretty cool, and my husband liked it. He said, ‘Those shorts were a little too short.’ I said, ‘Jealous?’” Parton recalled in an interview with People published on Tuesday, January 23. “And I said, ‘They weren’t as short as the other girls!’ He was just being funny. I think he thought — because everybody’s making a to-do over it — he thought, ‘Well, maybe you shouldn’t be showing your butt at that age.’ But anyway, he got a kick out of it too.”

    During the halftime show at the Cowboys’ Thanksgiving Day game last year, Parton performed her songs “Jolene” and “9 to 5” and a mashup of Queen’s “We Are the Champions” and “We Will Rock You” while wearing the official Dallas Cowboys cheerleader uniform, featuring a blue crop top paired with a fringe vest and white shorts. Under her ensemble, Parton added a sparkly sheer bodysuit that had a metallic star on her torso.

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    “I try not to get into anything I don’t think I can pull off, just like that little Dallas Cowgirl outfit,” Parton added on Tuesday. “I really thought, ‘Well, I’m just going to do this for fun,’ because I mean, I’ve never been to one of their halftime shows, and they’re so famous, the girls.”

    The country icon went on to say that Dean, 81, was one of the inspirations for the look. The duo, who tied the knot in 1966, celebrated their 57th wedding anniversary last year.

    “All the guys love [the Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders], my husband included, and I kind of did it for him,” Parton told People. “I thought, ‘Well, if I can pull this off, it’ll be cute, and if not, then they’ll just think that some older woman did a stupid thing!’ I just thought it was cool, and it evidently was because it turned out to be a big sensation.”

    Former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, who was the color commentator for the CBS broadcast of the game, was ecstatic about Parton’s appearance at the time.

    “Wow, that’s pretty good. She looks amazing,” Romo said before Parton’s halftime show. “She’s wonderful. Who doesn’t like Dolly Parton?”

    Dolly Parton Jokes Her Husband Was 'Jealous of Her Viral Cheerleader Outfit

    Dolly Parton
    Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images

    Sportscaster Jim Nantz — who appeared alongside Romo in the broadcast — agreed, sharing, “She is absolutely an American treasure, that’s for sure.”

    Some viewers criticized Parton for the skimpy outfit, but her famous fans were quick to defend her. Whoopi Goldberg was among those who defended Parton’s look.

    “Seventy-seven-year-old superstar Dolly Parton stole the show on Thanksgiving at the Cowboys-Commanders game dressed as a Dallas Cowboys cheerleader, but some critics told her to act her age,” Goldberg, 68, said on a November 2023 episode of The View. “Bite me! Everybody that participated in this, you should be ashamed of yourself.”

    Goldberg’s cohost Sunny Hostin agreed with her sentiment, adding, “If I look like that in one of them Cowboys things, I might have everything out. I don’t know if that’s a belly ring or what, but I want what she has.”

    Dolly’s sister Stella Parton also took to social media to defend her older sibling.

    “I personally thought my big sister Dolly was cute as hell in her Dallas Cowboys cheerleading costume at the halftime show on Thanksgiving,” Stella, 74, wrote via X. “To those of you being so critical of a 77 year old kicking up her heels, I say f–k yourself. Shame on you, not her.”



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