Concert to aid church

FAIRMONT – The Home Free a cappela concert on Sunday is a fundraiser for one local church, but it’s actually not a religious event, and the invitation to attend is extended to all.

Home Free features five Minnesota vocalists who have traveled the world creating an “eclectic mix” of music for all ages, using only their voices to create both luscious harmonies and percussive rhythms.

The “Raise the Roof” fundraiser came about as a means to help pay for a new roof and new electrical wiring in the sanctuary at First Congregational UCC on Downtown Plaza in Fairmont.

The building was shingled not long ago, but the congregation has still had troubles, according to Craig Nelson, who serves on the finance committee. Repairs are currently under way, and steel shingles are going up.

“Hopefully that will keep us in good stead for decades,” Nelson said.

The electrical work is a safety necessity, since the wiring dates back 85 years, he said.

The project isn’t cheap, and First Congregational UCC is facing the same dilemma churches across the country are experiencing: declining numbers. That’s one reason congregations are turning to each other more frequently to co-host events and extend aid.

“We’re all here for the same purpose in the end, so it’s great that cooperation is happening,” Nelson said.

A donor came forward to pay for the Home Free concert, so all proceeds will go into the church’s capital campaign account.

The band will take the stage 7 p.m. Sunday at Fairmont Opera House. Tickets are on sale at Hy-Vee and at the door. Main floor seating is $12 per person, or $10 for balcony seats.

“The same problem churches have the Opera House has, which is getting people to attend, so that’s why at the [the lower price] we’re hoping it will allow more people to come,” Nelson said.

For more information on the band, visit