Following the hugely successful contemporary Christian concerts presented last year, Panama City Beach is upping the ante with a three-day music and film festival later this month. Taking place Fri., August 26 â€“ Sun., Aug. 28 at Aaron Bessant Park, The Fun Never Sets Christian Music and Film Fest will feature performances by the industryâ€™s top names. Including headliners Third Day and TobyMac, artists playing at the festival this year have sold a combined 27 million albums.
In addition, event sponsor The Attic Film Fest will be showing motivational short movies created by Christian filmmakers throughout the event. Movie titles include Academy Award-nominated â€œMost,â€ a modern day parable about sacrifice and â€œThe Butterfly Circus,â€ a touching story about transformation, which was honored with the Clint Eastwood Filmmaker Award.
â€œWe are thrilled to host such talented musicians for a weekend that is inspirational and uplifting,â€ states Dan Rowe, president and CEO of Panama City Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau. â€œThe fall is a wonderful time to visit, and our gorgeous sugar-white sand beaches and emerald green waters perfectly set the stage for three days of praise, worship and reflection.â€
The Fun Never Sets Christian Music and Film Fest Concert Line Up
Friday, August 26
Petra (5:45 â€“ 6:45 p.m.) The first Christian rock band to be inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame, Petra was undoubtedly the worldâ€™s most popular band in the contemporary Christian music genre throughout the 1980s and early 1990s. Having released more than 20 studio albums, Petra was the first Christian band whose memorabilia was included in the Hard Rock CafÃ© restaurant chain. Several other artists have recorded tributes to the band, including country music sensation Tim McGraw.
Matthew West (7:15 â€“ 8:15 p.m.) The Downers Grove, Illinois native is best known for number one hits “More,” “You Are Everything,” and “The Motions.” West, who says he has plumbed the depths of his soul for sweet inspiration, released his latest album, My Own Little World, in 2010. In addition to a successful solo career, the musician has worked as a songwriter for many other well-known artists including Point of Grace, Billy Ray Cyrus, Jo Dee Messina and Rascal Flatts.
Third Day (8:45 â€“ 10:00 p.m.) Berthed amid a storm of personal crises and tragedies of those close to them, Third Dayâ€™s steely-eyed eighth album, Wherever You Are, was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Pop/Contemporary Gospel album in 2006. The Atlanta-based rockers are on a mission to convey the hope and eternity of Christ through their music, from their encouraging â€œRise Upâ€ to the inspirational â€œMountain of God.â€
Saturday, August 27
Jamie Grace (3:00 â€“ 3:30 p.m.) A hybrid mix of acoustic pop, hip hop, folk, and reggae, the newest addition to the TobyMac-founded label, Gotee Records, recently released a four-song collection titled Hold Me. Diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome at the age of 11, Grace, now 19, shares her story of resilience and hope through what she calls her â€œheart songs.â€
Peter Furler (4:00 â€“ 5:00 p.m.) Raw talent combined with hard work has produced one of Australiaâ€™s biggest exports â€“ not just in Christian music but in every genre. One of the few Aussies who can lay claim to writing, producing and singing more than 25 number one hits including classics â€œHe Reigns,â€ â€œShine,â€ and â€œSomething Beautiful,â€ Furlerâ€™s performances are notorious for being as diverse as they are divine.
Family Force 5 (5:30 â€“ 6:30 p.m.) Often referred to as a crunk rock band, Family Force 5 mixes a diverse set of music styles including punk, rap, R & B, funk, techno pop and more with positive lyrics. The band released their first full-length album titled Business Up Front/Party in the Back in 2006 and ventured onto the popular Vans Warped Tour the following year. The album, featuring several hit singles such as “Love Addict” and “Earthquake,” was an instant hit in both the Christian and mainstream markets.
Switchfoot (7:00 â€“ 8:15 p.m.) This well-known American rock band hailing from San Diego, California, first gained momentum in the mainstream music market when several of their songs were featured in the 2002 movie A Walk to Remember. The Beautiful Letdown, the bandâ€™s album released in 2003, contained their best-known singles, “Meant to Live” and “Dare You to Move.” With its play on words, Vice Verses, the title of Switchfootâ€™s newest album, coherently suggests that everything has two sides.
TobyMac (8:45 â€“ 10:00 p.m.) TobyMac ranks among the most successful artists in Christian music history in terms of radio success, sales power and critical acclaim. His fourth studio album, TONIGHT, was released in 2010 and centered on the belief that we all need God now â€“ this morning, this afternoon, tonight. The songs on the album are typical TobyMac in many ways â€“ an eclectic mix of rap, rock, pop and funk, all laden with catchy hooks and melodies just itching for airplay and audience singalongs.
Sunday, August 28
On Sunday at 10:00 a.m., Christian rock band DecembeRadio will lead a morning worship service to conclude a weekend of fellowship. Known for such musical hits as â€œDangerousâ€ and â€œDrifter,â€ DecembeRadio will delight fans with a short concert following the worship service. Tickets are not required for Sundayâ€™s service or concert.
Tickets are available through vacation packages with participating Panama City Beach lodging partners and Ticketmaster. For more information on these packages and details on purchasing individual tickets, visit www.visitpanamacitybeach.com.