From left: Steven Tyler and Carrie Underwood and Rihanna with Jennifer Nettles
Ethan Miller/Getty; Michael Buckner/Getty
When Nashville's finest take over Sin City for the Academy of Country Music Awards, it's a good thing that what happens in Vegas doesn't stay in Vegas.
The awards, which went to such country crooners
as Miranda Lambert
and Taylor Swift
, were only one highlight of Sunday night's show. If you missed any of the cowboy hat-happy action, PEOPLE.com breaks down some of the show's more memorable moments. Among them:
Blake Shelton Says the Funniest Things
Country stars must have been shaking in their boots when host Shelton started unleashing his humor
on his peers. Shelton's targets included Carrie Underwood
, Swift, Miley Cyrus
and LeAnn Rimes
"Eric Church has a big hit this year with 'Smoke a Little Smoke,'" Shelton, 34, told the audience. His punch line? "I heard it was about Miley Cyrus."
His lighthearted quips broke the ground rule that Shelton's co-host, Reba McEntire, 56, laid down from the get-go of the ceremony: "Blake and I have decided there will be no Charlie Sheen jokes and no Lindsay Lohan
jokes and no jokes about celebrity scandals," she said with a laugh, adding, "so goodnight, everybody."
Entertainer of the Year
Swift lived up to the title she earned later in the show with a foot-tapping take on her song "Mean." She started off singing on a porch backdrop, which was later traded for a skyline background to match the lyrics, "Someday I'll be living in a big old city/And all you're ever gonna be is mean."
"For me, with the entertainer of the year award, I see the face of Shania [Twain] and Garth [Brooks] and my heroes," she told PEOPLE after snagging the honor. "To be among them – it just means so much."
Rob and Reese Go Country
You've seen Robert Pattinson
rock fangs – but who knew Twilight
's British hunk had a little Southern twang
? Joined by his Water for Elephants
costar (and recent bride
) Reese Witherspoon
, Pattinson spilled the details about his drink of choice when they were filming in Tennessee.
"I like drinking a lot of moonshine," he said.
What would Simon Cowell
say? American Idol
judge Steven Tyler teamed up
with season-four winner Carrie Underwood
for a mashup of her hit "Undo It" and Aerosmith jam "Walk This Way."
The performance turned intimate when Tyler went in for a smooch at the cue of the lyrics. It was all in good, theatrical fun, though – the only thing these stars did with their mouths was sing.
Big Stars, Big Hearts
A group of young adults with developmental disabilities from the academy's Lifting Lives music camp joined country star Darius Rucker onstage to perform a song straight from the heart – to the letter.
The song, titled "Music From the Heart," brought the audience to their feet, including a teary-eyed Underwood and a visibly moved Swift.