Gospel music to fill Paul Porter Park

Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 3, 2006

COAL GROVE — The popular Paul Porter Park in Coal Grove will be extra busy Friday as gospel music fills the air.

The Singing Cookes and The Cooke Brothers, natives of Kingsport, Tenn., will headline the anticipated Gospel Sing Night scheduled for 7 p.m. to 11 p.m.


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Also, the event will include the Gospel Tide, from Catlettsburg, Ky. and the Gospel Aires, from Rush, Ky.

Organized by Gene Brown, owner of the Brown Funeral Chapel in Ironton, this outdoor concert is meant to welcome and to unite the community.

Brown, who calls himself “a spiritual man,” said that he originally intended to have a grand opening of his funeral home with a gospel concert. However, much to his dismay, the Cookes were unavailable for his October 2005 building opening.

Months passed until Brown received the news: The Cookes were able to come to the Tri-State.

For those unfamiliar with them, the Cookes sing Southern Gospel music and are reminiscent of the McKameys and the Singing Greens.

This musical extravaganza will showcase “the best of the best of Gospel music performers,” explains Cindy Jenkins, an employee of Brown Funeral Chapel.

This non-profit gospel revival is expected to draw a large crowd from the community.

Brown has personally invited more than 140 churches in the Tri-State — from Catlettsburg, Canonsburg, Russell, Worthington, Portsmouth, and Wheelersburg, to name a few. Love offerings and donations will be accepted to help finance the total cost of the event and performers.

The gospel concert is free, Brown said, because he wishes to involve the whole community, as well as their family and friends to a spiritual experience.

“Come ready to have some fun and good fellowship,” he said.

Brown and Jenkins are both members of the Lorraine St. Gospel Mission Church in Ironton.