November 26, 2013

Organizers of an inaugural Carroll-based Christian music festival aimed at promoting adoption and foster-care services say they hope to bring as many as 15,000 people here for the weekend event this coming July.

Several members of local evangenical churches are involved in the effort - known as REALfest - that is scheduled for July 25 to 27. The Carroll Community School District has signed off on the use of soccer fields near the middle school.

"We want to work with everybody in making it as good a festival as it can be," said Wes Treadway of Carroll, a member of Pleasant Ridge Community Church in Glidden.

Pete Collison of the Renew Church, Kyle Dana, pastor at Church of Christ in Carroll, and Jeff Hauser of Central Church, joined Treadway for the presentation he made to the Carroll City Council Monday.

"We've been working on this for quite some time," Treadway said, adding that organizers have been talking with the Caroll Hy-Vee and other vendors.

He said the goal is to raise awareness about adoption as an option. That considered, the event should be an economic-development lift for Carroll as well, Treadway said.

The festival is being organized in conjunction with Grand Rapids, Mich.-based Bethany Christian Services, which is heavily involved in both domestic and international adoption services.

Treadway said major Christian music performers are likely to be in Carroll.

The name of the festival - REAL - is an acronym for "really affecting another's life."

The council took no action on the festival Monday. Parking and other issues may emerge later. There will be no alcohol at the event so certain city licensing is unnecessary.