Christian artist Matthew West to headline seventh annual Flint Hills Praisefest in Manhattan

Matthew West headlining the 2017 Praisefest in Manhattan, is a four-time Grammy nominee, multiple-ASCAP Christian Music Songwriter/Artist of the Year winner and Billboard’s Hot Christian Songwriter of the Year in 2016. (Submitted)

Returning for its seventh year, next weekend organizers of the Flint Hills Praisefest Festival and 5K say it’s going to be bigger than ever.

 

On Saturday, Sept. 23, at the City Park in Manhattan, Matthew West, a four-time Grammy nominee, multiple ASCAP Christian Music Songwriter/Artist of the Year winner and Billboard’s Hot Christian Songwriter of the Year in 2016, will headline the city’s largest Christian music festival.

“I was in the industry myself for several years, so just going after these tours and trying to find a tour that meets our vision and mission of Praisefest as well as our budget (is what we strive for),” said Dave Romero, one of the organizers. “Matthew West is a pretty large artist, and we were able to land him pretty early on last year.”

This will be the second stop on West’s latest All In tour, and the only show free to the public, Romero said.

Praisefest begins at 8:30 a.m. with a 5K, and throughout the day there will be three stages featuring performers from around the region. The stages are sponsored by local businesses, making the entertainment free for guests.

However, there will also be vendors selling merchandise and food for their organizations, as well as a free-will offering for a local charity that Praisefest sponsors every year. This year, it’s “The House Cafe Inc.,” in Ogden.

“They are a youth center that reaches out to inner-city youth, and they have a coffee shop that they have built. All the youth run that coffee shop, they get trained to work and with their schooling, all that great stuff,” Romero said. “So we’ll raise funds and sell T-shirts, we take an offering at night and all the funding goes to that charity.”

The three pillars of Praisefest are worship, community and giving. Through this event, Romero said they’re able to put the “unity” in “community,” and affect people’s lives in a positive way.

“My favorite part is usually seeing all the churches come together. It kind of breaks down the walls for the churches — that’s one of our ideas for the event is we come together just as one body of Christ all worshipping together,” he said.

For information about the festival, visit flinthillspraisefest.org.

Stage Lineup

KJIL Stage:

Eric Martin, First United Methodist of Manhattan (10:45 a.m.)

Agape Family Church of Manhattan (11:30 a.m.)

Mt. Calvary of Wamego (12:15 p.m.)

Jesse and Alysha Campbell, of Manhattan Church of the Nazarene (1 p.m.)

Rachael Pankratz of Hutchinson (1:55 p.m.)

Sandra Vidal of Denver, Colo. (2:50 p.m.)

Mitch Langley of Topeka (3:45 p.m.)

^

Thrivent Stage:

Manhattan Church of the Nazarene (11 a.m.)

Jon Griffith of Manhattan (11:50 a.m.)

Rachael Pankratz of Hutchinson (12:40 p.m.)

Stratiotis of Fort Smith, Ark. (1:30 p.m.)

West Ridge Community Church of Wichita (2:25 p.m.)

UCC of Manhattan (3:20 p.m.)

TRU Church of Manhattan (4:15 p.m.)

CJ Luckey of Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas (5:10 p.m.)

^

New Century Bank Main Stage:

Cloverton (6:15 p.m.)

Jordan Feliz &Matthew West (7 p.m.)

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