The Paris News: Lamar County native Duane Allen, lead singer with the world famous Oak Ridge Boys, will celebrate his 50th year with the group on Nov. 20 when they appear at Love Civic Center. The concert is a fundraiser for the Boys & Girls Club Foundation of Paris and the only stop in Texas by the Oak Ridge Boys on their 2016 Christmas Tour.
The Paris News: Lamar County native Duane Allen, lead singer with the world famous Oak Ridge Boys, will celebrate his 50th year with the group on Nov. 20 when they appear at Love Civic Center.
The concert is a fundraiser for the Boys & Girls Club Foundation of Paris and the only stop in Texas by the Oak Ridge Boys on their 2016 Christmas Tour.
Allen said he is thrilled to be able to do something to help the people of his hometown.
“As entertainers, we’ve been blessed with success and with critical acclaim and we like to give some of that back,” Allen said. “We look for things to do like this, helping charitable organizations like the Boys & Girls Club.
“I’m so excited to get this chance to come home,” said Allen recently in a phone interview. “The Oak Ridge Boys have played in Paris three or four times over the years, but it’s been a while.”
“Next month will be my 50th year with the Oak Ridge Boys, and my 51st year singing professionally,” Allen wrote in an earlier email. “It all started in Lamar County. I’m proud of my home.”
Local event promoter Ronnie Nutt, a supporter of the club as well as a long-time friend and colleague of Allen, said he and other supporters of the B&GC are working on some special events to go along with the concert on Nov. 20 to honor Allen and his band mates.
“We hope to enlist some of the people who were a part of Duane’s life back then in Lamar County,” said Nutt. “From his classmates and fellow workers to his family, we hope to help celebrate his career and complete a 50-year circle that took him from Paris to Nashville and back again.”
In the meantime, B&GC members are looking for sponsors for the show.
“We are now contacting local sponsors to underwrite the entire show,” said Tommy Whitten, a member of the Boys & Girls Club of the Red River Valley executive board. “The entire gate from the concert will go to the foundation.”
The award-winning, world-famous Oak Ridge Boys are the official spokespersons for the American Legion, making public safety announcements for the veterans’ group. Last month, the band appeared at a fundraiser in Fort Worth and raised more than $145,000 for the families of Dallas police officers killed or injured in a sniper attack in July.
The Oak Ridge Boys’ Christmas Tour is actually two concerts, said Allen — a section devoted to the bands’ hits and fan favorites followed by more than an hour of Christmas music, from traditional carols and Gospel music to the latest popular holiday hits. Allen said he has it on good authority Santa Claus will also make an appearance at the concert.
Whitten said arrangements for ticket sales to the Oak Ridge Boys’ 2016 Christmas Tour in Paris are pending, and will be announced as they are finalized.