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Memorial United Methodist Church gears up for festival

Pastor Steve Judson and the Coal Grove Memorial United Methodist Church will celebrate fall a little early this year with a little help from the King.

The young pastor and the church's evangelism outreach committee are working on putting together the first annual Community Fall Festival for the first Saturday in September. Still in the works, the highlight of the activity-filled day will be an Elvis impersonator.

Judson and the rest of the congregation want the community to join in.

"This is an opportunity to reach out to the community and build relationships," Judson said. "If a couple of people start coming to the church, great. But, we really just want to get to know our neighbors and show a love for Christ."

The event is being set up so it should have something that appeals to everyone, he said.

"I hope this attracts everyone," he said. "We want families to come out. We are trying to reach everyone in the community."

Other activities scheduled include a health fair by King's Daughters Medical Center that will provide free screenings, games for all ages with various prizes, a watermelon eating and seed spitting contest, a bake-off judged by Mayor Tom McKnight, a pig roast and a fall clothing sale.

The event is not designed to be a money-maker and other than the clothing sale, all the activities are for free, although donations will be accepted. Anyone who would like to enter the bake-off should call the church at 532-5610.

Scheduled from noon to 5 p.m. Sept. 6 rain or shine, Judson said they will have tents and chairs set up on the church lawn at 224 Memorial Street but encouraged visitors to bring lawn chairs and blankets. The bake-off and health fair will be inside the fellowship hall.

The church will also take advantage of the festival to let people know about a new contemporary worship service that will kick off the next day at 11:30 that will be musically driven and may appeal to a younger audience.

Overall, Judson wanted to invite everyone to come out regardless of age, faith or social background.

"If you want to spend an afternoon in a family-oriented, safe environment where the kids can run around and have fun, then I would encourage you to come out. It should be a real fun way to spend the afternoon."