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Annual Kings Prairie concert to feature new acts, past favorites

Thursday, July 28, 2011

The cast of Kelly's Kountry Junction TV show will bring their act with comedy and music to the annual Kings Prairie benefit concert on Aug. 13, east of Monett.
The 12th annual Kings Prairie benefit concert has been scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 13, and will feature new acts for the rural Monett event and past favorites.

Once again the concert will focus on the "old-time" music popular in the days when the Kings Prairie school was active. Proceeds from the concert will go toward maintaining the historic Kings Prairie school and community center. A well has been drilled for new restrooms.

According to Louella Helmkamp, the community association is about $4,000 short of being able to construct a building for permanent bathrooms, which has been the long-term goal.

Guitarist Dwayne Friend will bring his playing skills and songbook of gospel music hits to the Kings Prairie concert.
This year's entertainment will include guitarist Dwayne Friend, the cast of the television show Kelly's Kountry Junction, bluegrass band Brightwater Junction and Al Brumley Jr. as master of ceremonies.

Dwayne Friend has been called "one of the greatest guitar players" by no less than Chet Atkins. Friend has won three Dove Awards, the highest honor within the gospel music business and has written numerous top gospel songs, including "The Night Before Easter" and "The Little Boy from the Carpenter Shop."

Friends has worked with the Happy Goodman family, the Blackwood Brothers Quartet and others. He was voted Instrumentalist of the Year two years in a row and has performed both on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, Tenn. and in Branson.

Brightwater Junction, a favorite at past Kings Prairie concerts, will be back with bluegrass music for the 2011 show.
Kelly's Kountry Junction is a southwest Missouri tradition on Ozarks Public Television, airing Saturday evenings. Based in Joplin, the cast is headed by country artist Kelly Lee James and includes TV veterans Rodney Lay and Vernon Sanduskey from the old "Hee Haw" show.

The 21 cast members have included country music legend DeWayne Bowman, Leona Williams and Barbara Fairchild, all Branson performers. Al Brumley Jr. appeared on the show and was persuaded the ensemble to join the Kings Prairie concert. Their show includes comedy, skits and music.

Brightwater Junction is one of the most acclaimed bluegrass bands in the area. Past performers at the Kings Prairie concert, the band is known for its tight harmonies and virtuoso playing. The band was the national runner-up in the Single Mic Competition for 2011. Band members include Lyn Coones on banjo, Tonya Coones on bass, Eric Coones on mandolin, songwriter Jason Jordan on guitar and Andrew Morton on fiddle.

Brumley will host the concert as well as share some of the music of his father, Albert E. Brumley, composer of "I'll Fly Away" and other gospel music classics.

The concert will be held on the grounds of the historic Kings Prairie Community Center, located south of Highway 60, three miles east of Monett, on Highway Z one mile, then west on Farm Road 2015, across from the New Liberty Church.

Concessions will begin being sold at 5 p.m. The menu will include hamburgers, potato salad, cole slaw, baked beans and drinks. Homemade pie will also be available.

The music will start at 6 p.m. and run until around 9 p.m.

For more information, call Helmkamp at 417-235-3870.

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I want to welcome everyone reading this to our festival this year! We're looking at a real fun show, and something for everyone!

We always look forward to seeing new faces at our association meetings,the first Thursday of the month at 7 pm. If you feel like you could help out during our music show, we'd like to hear from you. We enjoy meeting new friends and neighbors.

Right now, our big project is getting a modern restroom/furnace room built on the grounds near the old school building. As always, funds are tight, and hopes are high.

A cement-block all-season building whose design melds with the original schoolhouse is what we're aiming at.Handicapped accessible and enclosed storage area as part of the footprint. Anybody out there like to chip in? We welcome your input!

-- Posted by nancydotson57 on Fri, Jul 29, 2011, at 12:18 PM

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