Columbus BBQ, Gospel Sing starts Thursday

Published 5:32 pm Tuesday, June 28, 2011

For the past 37 summers, on the four days before the Fourth of July, a barbecue meal and four nights of gospel singing have drawn crowds of hundreds of people to downtown Columbus.
This year will be no exception as the fire department and WJFJ Radio bring the event, which raises funds for fire department equipment and other needs, into its 38th year.

Naomi and the Segos will perform Sunday, July 3 in Veterans Park in Columbus during the Columbus Fire Department’s annual BBQ and Gospel Sing. (photo submitted)

The fire department will sell hot dogs, hamburgers, barbecue sandwiches and cold soft drinks for lunch and supper all four days. This year, Columbus Fire Chief Bobby Arledge plans to add baked beans and vinegar-based slaw for those who wish to order a full meal.
The music is free and will include a member of the Southern Gospel Hall of Fame, groups with hits on the top 40 southern gospel top 40 charts and favorite performers from the local area.
Music will begin each night at 7 p.m. A live broadcast will be available each night on WJFJ Radio 1160.
For more information or directions, call 828-894-5858.
The music line-up this year includes:
Thursday, June 30
• Wells of Joy, a country gospel group from north Greenville County
• Herb’s Singers, a gospel mixed quartet from Henderson County
• The Master’s Singers, a family trio from Chesnee, S.C.
• The Phillips Family, a Gaffney-based family quartet with radio airplay nationwide
Friday, July 1
(bluegrass night)
• The Watkins family, nationally known group from Eastanollee, Ga., nominated for several bluegrass industry awards, with several charting gospel songs
• The King James Boys, a bluegrass group from Cowpens, S.C. that has just released its first national hit song to gospel radio
• Soldiers for the Cross, local favorite from Sunny View featuring Sunny View Fire Chief Marty McGuinn
• Acoustic Faith, a bluegrass group based in the little Chicago area of Spartanburg County
Saturday, July 2
• Reflections of Grace, a Saluda-based gospel trio
• Soul Vision, a fast-climbing quartet from Brevard, N.C., that has become a local area favorite and is scheduled for its first nationwide radio single release
• Greg Day, a singer-songwriter from Greer, S.C.,who has written numerous top 10 and 20 songs, including the number-1 song of the 1980s in gospel music, “The Midnight Cry”
• Mike Upright, a soloist based in Penrose, N.C., who has had almost a dozen top 40 national gospel hits, including “The Great Physician’s Hand,” a December 2010 top 20 hit.
Sunday, July 3
• The Atkins Family, a family group based in Greer, S.C., that travels extensively throughout the United States
• The Jimmy Justice Family, a family group from Hendersonville, N.C. that has been traveling since 1973 and features almost a dozen instruments and vocalists. This family has also had several national charting singles.
• Brian Birchfield, a vocalist from Surgoinsville, Tenn., formerly with the Melody Trio and Divine Purpose, who wrote several national charting songs in the gospel field
• Naomi and the Segos, a Gospel Music Hall of Fame group featuring 80-year-old Naomi Sego, a southern gospel pioneer who sang gospel music’s first million-selling record, “Sorry I Never Knew You.” Sego has been traveling since 1957.
There is no admission charge for the music; however, donations of any size are accepted.
Those attending are asked to bring their lawn chairs to enjoy one of Polk County’s most popular events. In case of rain, music will be performed in the Columbus Baptist Church auditorium.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox