February 19, 2012 - Gospel Celebration Cruise

Welcome everyone to our new SouthernGospelPDX.com Blog page! I was supposed to write this when we returned from the Gospel Celebration Cruise to the Mexican Riviera but things have been crazy since we returned. My wife Kathie and I stayed in Southern California for a few days to visit our Grandson's and Disneyland in the warm California sun. Since returning, there was The Hopper concert to prepare for and other things that kept my attention.
First, the cruise. What a slice of Heaven at sea! If you have never gone on a Gospel cruise let me encourage you to do so. Imagine spending time on the deck of a cruise ship with the likes of The Booth Brothers, Legacy Five, The Hoppers, Taranda Greene, Triumphant Quartet and the whole Beene Family. Let me tell you a little of what a day is like on sea.

Every morning from 8:30 to 10:00 you get a chance to have a devotional time each day, either with a guest Pastor and/or a singing group. (Or you can choose to sleep in and have room service breakfast like I did a couple of days :) This schedule changes daily, some days there is a 10am morning concert, and some days a meet and greet in the bookstore where the artists have their product. A chance to buy that CD or DVD that you have been wanting, and get it autographed while you visit with your favorite artist.

After you have a hearty lunch at your choice of food venues, such as the buffet or setting down in the luxurious dining room, there is the 2pm afternoon Gospel concert. These feature various artists also, so you get a taste of all of the talent on board. When we were at port, such as Puerto Vallarta and Cabo San Lucas, they switched the schedule around so we didn't miss out on anything. If you don't leave the ship at port they offer a game afternoon and other various activities that the ship provides. We were on the Holland America Oosterdam. A medium size ship with all kind of morning, noon and evening activity options besides the Gospel Celebration activities. Or you can just lay by the two pools, swim, read a book or anything else your heart desires.

The highlight of the cruise is the 6pm evening Gospel Concert! This is when they really turn it on, for sure. I can't express in words the feeling you get when you are in a room full of people that love the Lord and are listening to his Word in song. Southern Gospel songs have great meaning in scripture and the testimonies of the artists are sure to capture your heart. Like I have said before, it is like a slice of Heaven at sea! The atmosphere and comradery that is in the air, there is nothing like it. You are sure to make some new friends in Christ.

What happens after the evening concert? Well at 8pm each night prepare yourself for a 5 star gourmet meal at tables surrounded by your favorite artists. The food was more than wonderful. Expect to gain a few pounds, but you can work it off when you get back home. Don't worry about it! Enjoy, because your meals are included in the price of the cruise, along with everything else. (Except your airfare of course) This is the time when you can really let your hair down and sit and visit until you can't eat any more or cannot stay awake. Then you go to your extra comfortable bed in your luxurious stateroom for a good nights sleep, ready for a full day the next morning. (Or like I said, sleep in and have room service, no extra charge!) The next Gospel Celebration Cruise information is on our Home page. We are going to the Caribbean, and what an itinerary! I hope some of you can come and join us.

Well, I guess that's enough for this time. Remember to keep checking the Concert page for upcoming concerts and updates. Next concert coming up is sponsored by our website so please make every attempt to attend to help support The Tribute Quartet on March15th at 7pm. The venue is the Seventh Day Adventist Community Church of Vancouver. They are located at 9711 NE St. Johns Road. They are also having a northwest group called Keepers Of The Faith on Friday night February 23rd at 7pm. Both concerts do not require a ticket, they are on a love offering basis.

Thank you for clicking on our BLOG page, come back for the next update. A lot of good things coming up in the future. The Melody Boys, Liberty Quartet, The Booth Brothers, The Gaither Homecoming Tour and The Needhams are coming our way in the future. Don't forget about the Great Western Fan Festival in Visalia coming up in April. You can get that information at Fanfestivals.com. Please help us by attending all of the Southern Gospel concerts that you can.I know you will!

Blessings! Gary Hagan

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