A three-time Super Bowl champion, a baseball star, and Grammy Award-winning artists are just some of the special guests that will take the stage Saturday for a Christian festival benefiting the hungry.
The "End Summer Hunger" festival and concert will take place in the Dallas-area with the goal of raising awareness about summer hunger – a phenomenon that affects millions of school children each year when summer vacation begins.
Among those set to speak and sing at the concert are former Dallas Cowboy's Chad Henning, Texas Rangers' Josh Hamilton, TobyMac, and Casting Crowns. Gospel for Asia's president, K.P. Yohannan, is also expected to speak at the event. Henning will deliver the keynote address.
"This is an event within itself because we are such a small organization that it is a testimony to the idea that if people will work together they can have such an impact," says Denny Nooner, whose group, Twenty Ten Mission, is sponsoring the event. "Regardless of attendance, we have already seen how groups will band together when we say that if we work together we can make a bigger impact."
The full-day family festival will charge a $20 admission fee and asks attendees to contribute two non-perishable food items to help the cause.
Summer hunger, though not widely discussed, affects children nationwide every year. Children who receive free or low-cost breakfasts and lunches during the school year often go without food during the summer when classes are out.
In the Dallas-Fort Worth area – home to the third wealthiest group of zip codes in Texas – there are at least 300,000 school children who will go hungry in nearby communities such as East Dallas.
"People think they need to take a trip overseas to make a difference, but there are so many children who need help that are only a zip code away," says Randy Skinner, director of Greater Dallas Justice Revival.
To help tackle the problem, net proceeds and food donations from the benefit concert will go toward supporting the work of Dallas Justice Revival, Triple Play Ministries, Vernon Wells Perfect 10 Foundation and other organizations that provide food for children in the Dallas area.
The "End Summer Hunger" is Twenty Ten Mission's first large-scale benefit concert. Previously, the fairly new organization has done smaller scale events in the Dallas-Fort Worth area to help raise awareness about different social issues, including poverty and human trafficking.
According to Nooner, Twenty Ten Mission has so far given money raised through its events only to Christian organizations.