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County Line Baptist Church New Year’s Stew and Singing

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It’s been an annual event for over 100 years at County Line Baptist Church; the traditional New Year’s Stew (both chicken and beef!) and All-Day Singing. Decades ago, County Line parishioners would hold the event in a cramped church house which overflowed outside to tables near where the stew was cooked on church-owned property.  Today, the church sits on a portion of the original property on FM275 near the Hopkins/Rains County line.  It houses a spacious Family Life Center with kitchen and dining room, Sunday School rooms and office space and a brand-new sanctuary.  The most recent building process was accomplished through monetary gifts, donated labor and neighborly help.

The All-Day Singing is led by the Texas Southern Gospel School of Music. This organization provides instruction for church groups in five states. The school’s annual travel circuit begins with the singing at County Line on New Year’s Day. During open classes, guest gospel groups, quartets and soloists can offer their musical gifts and receive free instruction from representatives of four music companies. These companies also provide curriculum for the school. Some were once associated with the early Stamps and Stamps/Baxter Singing Schools shaped-note instruction books. In the tradition of the late Sam Speed, Pastor Darty and Deacon Lewis Watts continue year-round promotion of the popular event hosted at County Line.

County Line Pastor Wayne Darty

Stew Cooks Woody Garmon and Clinton Lennon


There was plenty of stew and desserts to go around.

Singer Randall McDaniel chats with Gail Garmon and Nell Ross Garmon

A trio of second-generation gospel singers at the singing school

Students form a quartet for personalized instruction in harmony

Don’t miss the next one on January 1, 2018!


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Author: Enola Gay

Has enjoyed working for KSST since 1989. Hosts the Good Morning Show with Enola Gay on weekday mornings from 6-9am, so 'start your day with Enola Gay'! Guest interviews during the Morning Show can also be seen in playback on Cable Channel 18 TV. Along with local country music fan Benny Potter, co-produces 1230 West, a Country and Western Swing radio show which airs weekly on Saturdays from 7-8am and repeats on Thursdays from 7-8pm. Also writes "At the Corral Gate", a column appearing weekly in The Millennium Shopper and in the Lifestyles section of

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