The 96th State Annual Singing Convention will be taking place Friday, June 24th through Sunday, June 26th in the Benson Singing Grove at 400 East Main Street in Benson.
On Friday, the following groups will each present thirty minute concerts starting at 7 pm: Full Reliance, The Hinshaw Trio, Journey ‘N Faith, Divine Intention, Heaven’s Grace, and Maranatha Singers.
On Saturday, The Inspirations will be featured in a special concert at 7pm with The Hickory Grove Quartet opening at 6:30pm. A household name in any musical genre, the Inspirations are models of consistency in the Southern Gospel Music field. They originated in 1964 when Martin Cook, a chemistry teacher at Swain County High in Bryson City, NC, and a few of his students and friends held nightly singing sessions in the basement of his home, purely for fun. A few of them decided to take their act on the road a few years later and immediately took Southern Gospel Music by storm. The Inspirations have remained at the forefront of the genre since, while achieving tremendous popularity and success. They make up a four-part harmony quartet with an unmistakable sound, striking the medium of traditional Southern Gospel and country.
As customary, informal (round robin) singing begins at 10am on Saturday and Sunday and continues daily with only two exceptions: (1) during group competition (2) during the special concerts by The Inspirations and The Hickory Grove Quartet on Saturday night. All groups are welcome and encouraged to sing in the contests. People are welcome to come out and watch at any time. On Saturday and Sunday competing junior and senior groups including duets, trios, quartets, families, and church choirs begin at 2 pm.
If you’re interested in participating instead of spectating, groups singing in Saturday’s competition are asked to fill out a registration form in the office in the Singing Grove by 1pm on Saturday. Groups singing in Sunday’s competition are asked to fill out a registration form in the office by 1pm on Sunday. There is no on-line registration this year. Please call, fax, or email if you have questions – contact information below. There are NO SOLOS due to time restraints. There is no entry fee to compete in the contests.
No admission is charged, and people are encouraged to bring a lawn chair to sit and enjoy the music.