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Opry opens on Friday at church
Oak Grove holds fundraiser
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Forsyth County News
If you’re going

The Oak Grove Opry will be at 7 p.m. Nov. 6-7 and 6 p.m. Nov. 8 at Oak Grove Baptist Church, 5640 Oak Grove Circle. Tickets are $7, or $5 for groups of 20 or more who order by Wednesday. Concessions such as hamburgers, hot dogs, french fries and homemade fried pies will be for sale.
What began as a church children’s camp fundraiser has grown into an anticipated annual event, drawing as many as 650 people a night.

Now in its 21st year, the Oak Grove Opry returns Nov. 6-8 at Oak Grove Baptist Church.

Cindy J. Mills, a longtime member of the church, has directed the production since it began in 1989.

She said the Opry is a comical show, featuring church members impersonating and lip syncing to various musical acts like the Oak Ridge Boys, Billy Ray Cyrus  and Sonny and Cher.

“Basically, it’s a lip sync thing, but they do put their own little spin on things,” Mills said.

She said the first show grew out of performances at Lanierland Music Park in north Forsyth, which closed in November 2006.

“My dad was one of the owners and I managed [Lanierland],” she said. “We had stuff from that, like lights and recordings of different singers being introduced, so it was a natural fit.”

The event began when some church members put on a show for each other, impersonating acts like Conway Twitty.

“It was a funny thing,” Mills said. “Everybody laughed so much and had so much fun with it, I wondered if we could sell tickets and raise money for church camp.”

The money raised each year still goes to that cause, allowing the church to send hundreds of children to a Baptist camp in Toccoa over the past couple decades.

Mills said one of the best parts of the event is the diverse audience.

“Old people and young people all like it,” she said. “My 92-year-old mother can’t wait to see every year and then we have groups of high school kids too. It’s really a neat thing.”

The Opry also draws people from across north Georgia.

“We have people from Cleveland and Clarkesville,” Mills said. “... People won’t know anybody in [the show], but once they see it, they come back.”