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Sounds of the Season

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 As the holiday season approaches, the North East Texas Choral Society and Music Director Carol Allen are hard at work on their Christmas performance entitled “Once Upon a Christmas,” which will premier Dec. 5 at the Hopkins County Regional Civic Center.

The annual event will include a 100-member chorus performing all the Christmas favorites along with a few new songs that Allen says will bring joy to the holiday season.

“If you have never heard 100 voices singing together, you do not know what you are missing,” said Allen. “Every concert, we have more than one person that says, ‘This is my first time and I will never miss another.’”

Sulphur Springs High School music teacher Beth Crutcher will be one of the soloists this year. This is Crutcher’s second outing with the choral society, but Allen says this presentation will be very special.

“Beth will sing 'And The Stars Sang,' a truly beautiful song,” said Allen. “The way the song fits with her voice is just gorgeous, I look forward to woking with her during her career at Sulphur Springs High School.”

Others performing solos will be Marlin Chisom, Kellie Cody, Waylon Jordan and Mike Dodd. Allen explained that each solo or duet was especially chosen for a performer’s voice.

“It will be an enchanting and magical experience,” she said.

One of the highlights of the evening will be the rendition of “Christmas Dreams.

” Allen said the piece is not only musically complex but will bring a tear to the eye of everyone in the audience.

“If there is one song that deeply describes Christmas, it would be that song,” she said. “If you paid your $10 and came to the concert and only heard that one song, you would walk out the door and say you spent the best $10 all Christmas season.”

Like in previous years, the concert will have two parts. The first act will feature traditional Christmas favorites, followed by songs about the birth and life of Jesus Christ in the second act.

“We try to bring both sides of the Christmas experience. You have songs about Santa Claus and favorites like 'I'll be home for Christmas' that tug at your heart,” said Allen. “We also tell the story of a baby that comes as the audience waits, anticipates, believes until salvation comes to the earth once again. We believe in both sides of Christmas.”

The concert will be Dec. 6 at 7 p.m. and Dec. 7 at 2 p.m. in the Civic Center. Tickets are $10 in advance for adults and $5 for children or $12 dollars at the door with a special $25 dollar family price. For $25, the family package includes two adult tickets and four children’s tickets.

Allen encouraged everyone to bring as many children as they could for the performances.

“You have known these songs all your life and are waiting to hear them again,” said Allen. “We want everyone to enjoy this experience.” She also recommended that those who are cold-natured should bring a blanket to the concert.

The News-Telegram will also be giving away two pairs of tickets Tuesday, Nov. 25, for the concert the following week. To submit an entry, email your name and telephone number to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or stop by the News-Telegram office at 601 Church St. and ask for Jon Lance or Butch Burney. There will also be a post on Facebook to leave your information at the mySSnews.com web page. The drawing will be the morning of Nov. 25 with the winner contacted by noon.

United Way gets biggest weekly donations to date

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Hopkins County United Way’s weekly campaign report Wednesday blew away last week's record-breaking donations with several homeruns by heavy hitters like Grocery Supply Company, Ocean Spray, Flowserve and Sulphur Springs Independent School District. Campaign President Chris Voorheese commented that through the year there have been several great weeks but Wednesday morning, at the AgriLife Extension building, something big happened.


Fatality: 16-year-old dies in wreck

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A 16-year-old was killed in a pickup crash on FM 69, just south of Brinker Volunteer Fire Department, Tuesday afternoon.


3 rural school boards will have new faces

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At the conclusion of voting Tuesday, at least one new member each had been elected to serve on three rural school boards, while a fourth district’s board will be unchanged.


Bovine Flies

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Dr. Sonja Swiger spoke about integrated control of flies in livestock operations to start out the Private Applicator Credit seminar hosted at the Hopkins County Regional Civic Center on Wednesday morning. The program was organized by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service in Hopkins County and was partially sponsored by NETBIO.

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