PAXTON AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE: Hymn Fest to be directed by former M-S chorus leader
Paxton Area Chamber of Commerce issued the following announcement on Aug. 1.
GIBSON CITY — The annual Hymn Festival sponsored by the Gibson Area Music Foundation will be at 3 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 12, at the United Methodist Church in Gibson City.
This year’s director is Janet Watkins, who formerly led choral programs for many years in Mahomet-Seymour schools, with her choirs traveling in the U.S. and abroad. Watkins also has been a guest director for many music festivals and a frequent music contest judge.
Watkins received the Harold Decker Award of Excellence in 2002, the highest honor given by the Illinois American Choral Directors Association. Watkins also received the Outstanding Alumni of Fine Arts at Illinois State University in 2000, the first year the award was given. Watkins and her husband were also named Citizens of the Year in 2000 by the Mahomet Chamber of Commerce.
Although now retired from teaching, Watkins is still active musically in her church. Watkins also enjoys following the activities of her 17 grandchildren.
The theme of this year’s Hymn Festival is “Celebrating the Triune God,” and the program will feature well-loved hymns such as “Great is Thy Faithfulness” and “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross.”
In addition to a variety of sing-along opportunities, those attending will hear brief backgrounds of each hymn. Music will be provided, and lyrics will be projected on a large screen.
The audience also will be treated to a special choral performance of “‘When I Survey the Wondrous Cross.” Accompaniment will be provided by organist Bill Ogg and pianist Stephanie Swearingen, showcasing the church’s historical pipe organ and baby grand piano.
The church is located at the intersection of Church and Tenth streets in Gibson City, and it offers elevator access to the sanctuary from the north entrance. Ample free parking is available in lots to the north and east of the church, as well as free on-street parking. The church’s spacious sanctuary features large stained-glass windows that are more than 100 years old.
There is no admission charge. A free-will offering will be taken to support events and scholarships funded by the nonprofit music foundation.
Donations may also be made directly to: Gibson Area Music Foundation, P.O. Box 292, Gibson City, IL 60936.
Original source can be found here.