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OACS Foundation presents Michael W. Smith concert

Written on February 9th, 2009

May 16 event to raise profile of schools and organizations that ‘transform lives’ 

The OACS Foundation (OACSF) is organizing a Michael W. Smith concert May 16, 2009, at the Copps Coliseum in Hamilton, Ontario.

Larry Lutgendorff, director of development for the OACSF, says it is amazing to have Michael W. Smith performing a concert on behalf of the foundation. The OACSF supports Christian school development and curriculum across the province, supporting the vision of the Ontario Alliance of Christian Schools (OACS).

The award-winning singer, songwriter and recording artist last performed in the area more than 10 years ago and people are still talking about the concert, says Lutgendorff.

“We are hoping that this will be as memorable or even more memorable event,” he says.

The concert has been in the works for more than a year, says Lutgendorff. The foundation was looking for ways to raise funds without competing with local school donors.

“We were looking for a different and innovative way to raise money and yet reach out to a broader audience and the idea of doing a fundraising concert came up,” says Lutgendorff. The fundraising goal for the event is $100,000 or more.

OACS member schools will be selling tickets from Feb. 14 to March 14. Tickets start at $29 and for each ticket sold $5 goes to the local school. Tickets will also be available through the OACS website.

Through the event, the organizers aim to raise the profile of schools and organizations that “transform lives.”

“(The event will be a) gathering of the Christian family in southwestern Ontario, a gathering of the family of Christian schools — all of those people who are working together to ‘transform lives’ of children here at home and around the world,” says Lutgendorff.

The organizers are currently working to secure sponsors. Crossroads Television System (CTS) has expressed interest to be main media sponsor. The OACS school that is the top ticket-seller will be featured on an upcoming ConneCTS program.

Other interested sponsors include Christian Horizons, Compassion Canada and World Vision. There will be a Christian marketplace at the event featuring Christian education and literacy work being done locally and around the world.

“We are really excited about this and the level of excitement from people out there is really high,” says Lutgendorff, noting that if tickets sell quickly there is consideration for a second concert.

Smith was recently inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame. Over his career he has released many albums, 10 books and has won Dove awards and Grammy awards. He and his wife Debbie have five children.

To learn more about Michael W. Smith, visit his website at www.michaelwsmith.com.