PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (WATE) – For the first time in 63 years, organizers have suspended the National Quartet Convention due to state COVID-19 regulations. An alternate gospel festival will be held instead.
The alternate event, the NQC Fall Festival, will now take place from Sept. 27 to Oct. 3 at the LeConte Center.
“It breaks our heart that, after 63 straight years, NQC will not occur in 2020,” Clarke Beasley, executive vice president of the National Quartet Convention, said. “Though we are saddened by this, we are thankful that existing orders will allow us to do the alternate Fall Festival event for the benefit of the artists and gospel music fans, who still plan to come to Pigeon Forge from all over the country.”
Details for the NQC Fall Festival event are as follows:
- The LeConte Center will be set with 1,500 chairs socially distanced 6 feet apart by pairs
- The main stage of the Fall Festival will be set up at one end instead of in the round.
- Admission for the NQC Fall Festival will be sold on a first-come, first-serve basis. The event is currently on sale and will be a general admission event.
- NQC customers will either have their admission for NQC 2020 refunded or applied to next year. It will be each customer’s choice.
- Artists who perform in the Fall Festival will have displays set up in the Greenbriar ballroom, and the displays will be sufficiently distanced apart. There is plentiful space in the Greenbriar to allow for distancing between and in front of the displays.
The National Quartet Convention was founded in 1957 by gospel music legend and former backup vocalist for Elvis Presley, J.D. Sumner, who co-produced the event with James Blackwood.
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