If you go
What: Forsyth Family Fest
When: 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Sept. 11
Where: Cumming Fairgrounds, 235 Castleberry Road
Share 9/11 memories
The 9/11 terrorist attacks shook the lives of all Americans. As the 10th anniversary of the tragic day draws near, the Forsyth County News wants to hear from readers. Tell us your memories of the events and the impact the aftermath has had on your life. E-mail your recollections to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also write us at the Forsyth County News, P.O. Box 210, Cumming, GA 30028 or hand deliver to 302 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Cumming, GA 30040.
When Pastor Bob Jolly left last year’s Forsyth Family Fest, he asked the Cumming Fairgrounds director to reserve the Sunday after Labor Day for the 2011 event.
It wasn’t until two months later he realized what that date would be.
"I just told him the same weekend, and didn’t even know it was [Sept.] 11, much less the 10th anniversary" of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Jolly said.
"Once we realized [that], we knew we needed to do something to significantly remember it."
The Forsyth Family Fest has brought together several local churches and thousands of people for worship, fun and music the past two years.
This year’s event will take on a more somber note in commemorating a tragic day in American history.
Community outreach organizer Steve Jackson said he expects this year’s fest will be more emotional.
"In the past, the family fest has been a big party celebrating life in the community and life in Christ," Jackson said. "This year, it will be a more patriotic focus.
"We’ll all be remembering where we were that day and what we heard and what we felt."
The theme for the free community event at the fairgrounds is: "Celebrate Hope. Remember 9/11."
The day will begin with a morning worship service featuring evangelist Tony Nolan.
Jolly said Nolan’s personal story of "hope out of hopelessness" fits in well with the American attitude after 9/11.
After the morning worship, the day’s attractions will open, followed by an evening concert and fireworks.
"Even though this is a very somber day and a day of reflection, we have much to be thankful for," Jolly said. "We want to remember the good things about our country and our nation as well."
The festival will feature several musical performances and a variety of food and activities for children and teenagers.
It will also include a 9/11 museum, featuring artistic representations and multimedia from the 2001 event.
As in the past, the fest brings together 15 local churches.
"I think it’s important for those outside the church to see Christian churches working together," Jolly said, "… Not only to tell people the good news of Jesus Christ, but also to serve the community."