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Monday, Dec. 22, 2014

4 Christian music festivals finishing out summer

Compiled by Kelsey Dallas, Deseret News National Edition

Published: Thu, Aug. 21 5:50 a.m. MDT

 Gracefest California

Gracefest California

(via Facebook)

Last weekend, rock music fans and retired hippies celebrated the 45th anniversary of Woodstock, one of America's most famous music events. Its "three days of music and peace" live on in music legend as newer festivals try to honor its spirit, CNN reported.

The anniversary was an opportunity to revisit the incredible performances of rock stars like Jimi Hendrix, but also a reminder of the culture of drugs, sex and chaos that often accompanies such large-scale events.

For more religious fans, there are more than 25 Christian music festivals each year in America, which promise to provide a rocking and rolling good time with a holier atmosphere.

See the slideshow to the left for 15 of the nation's biggest megachurches.

Although most of the 2014 festivals took place earlier this summer, four events remain to rock stages across America into September:

1. Amplify Fest | Benton, Arkansas | Aug. 29-30

This free two-day festival expects to attract around 20,000 people to the grounds of Holland Chapel Baptist Church. Christian artists like Jeremy Camp, Big Daddy Weave and Becca Bradley will perform and visitors will be treated to tours of military vehicles and a fireworks show.

Its website says, "The desire of Amplify Fest is to Glorify God, by removing barriers between the Church and the world, exposing people to the life changing message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ."

2. LifeLight | Worthing, South Dakota | Aug. 29-31

Featuring performers like Skillet and Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, the LifeLight South Dakota music festival is one aspect of the LifeLight organization's larger evangelistic mission. Like Amplify Fest, LifeLight offers all concerts free of charge, hoping to expose attendees to the gospel message.

LifeLight's vision statement, published on its website, explains that it focuses on "reaching and rescuing people for Christ locally, regionally, nationally and globally through music and other relevant means to impact millions now and eternally." Its festivals have also been held in Pakistan, Haiti, Guatemala and Ethiopia.

3. GraceFest | Palmdale, California | Sept. 12-13

Calling itself "Antelope Valley's Premier Music and Message Festival," GraceFest's offerings go beyond its lineup of Christian performers. The festival includes a prayer rally with local pastors and display area for Christian merchants and compassion ministries.

Although GraceFest does charge for tickets, one of its main goals is to return profits to Kids Charities of the Antelope Valley and local Christian school scholarship programs.

4. Uprise Festival | Shippensburg, Pennsylvania | Sept. 19-20

Held at the Shippensburg Fairgrounds in southern Pennsylvania, this event's lineup includes musicians, speakers and Duck Dynasty stars Uncle Si and Jep Robertson.

The Christian faith of Uprise Festival's organizers is evident in the event's policies. Alcohol, cigarettes and drugs are not allowed on festival grounds, and evening concerts end by 10:30 p.m.

Email: kdallas@deseretnews.com

Twitter: @kelsey_dallas

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