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Mount Nebo Gospel Sings


The West Virginia State Gospel Singing Convention, at Mount Nebo in Nicholas County, draws groups and soloists from West Virginia and nearby states during four annual summer events.

The nonprofit West Virginia Mountain State Gospel Singers Corporation, chartered in 1956, organizes the gospel sings. The June singing convention is on the second weekend; the annual state convention is the last full week in July; the Labor Day convention spans the holiday weekend; and the special sing, featuring invited groups, is the second Saturday in September. The June, July, and Labor Day sings are open to all groups and soloists.

The conventions grew from the homecoming sing at the Nazarene Church Camp, two miles west of Mount Nebo. In 1949, organizers invited groups from neighboring Greenbrier and Fayette counties to participate in the Nicholas County homecoming. Because of its success, the three-county event grew into an annual statewide singing convention. The convention outgrew the church camp and moved to Camp Caesar in Webster County. Convention leaders, recognizing the need for a large permanent home, bought 40 acres of land near Mount Nebo and set up parking and camping facilities.

In 1982, Goldenseal magazine reported that the annual July convention drew 15,000 people. In 2000, attendance at the annual convention was an estimated 6,000 to 7,000.

Sources

  1. Samsell, James. Singing on the Mountain. Goldenseal, (Summer 1982).