The Q-C Festival of Praise has survived and thrived for 20 years over a succession of names and changes and this weekend it will bloom in Davenport’s LeClaire Park with a huge concert featuring the hugely popular Christian pop act Rend Collective.

The show, which begins at 7 p.m. (gates open at 5 p.m.), also features Brandon Shupp and the Heritage Worship Team.

Tickets are available before the show for $20 at all Chick Fil A shops in the Quad-Cities and are on sale for $25 at the door.

“We’re excited!” said Babette Howard, promotions and marketing manager for the festival. “We actually changed the date to accommodate this band. They were here last year with Chris Tomlin and the audience response was huge. They’re energetic, they’ve got a new sound and new and interesting instrumental elements, they really got a great response.

Mercy Me headlined last year’s Q-C Festival of Praise and led the crowd in a sunset sing-along. (Leanne Wildermuth photo)

Mercy Me headlined last year’s Q-C Festival of Praise and led the crowd in a sunset sing-along. (Leanne Wildermuth photo)

“We were really happy we could book them, we wanted them for our normal Saturday but it just wasn’t working out and then we found out we could have them on Sunday, so we decided to change the day of the event.”

So what is the Q-C Festival of Praise all about?

“It’s about glorifying and magnifying God through music and worship,” Howard said. “It’s the biggest Christian outdoor concert in the Quad-Cities area.”

The event typically draws about 8,000 people to LeClaire Park.

“The one thing that I have found about these concerts is that they all have a foundation in life and celebration of life,” said Kathryn Bohn, executive producer of the festival. “We never know who we’re going to do them for, except the general community, of course. This year we have made the emphasis on honoring the police. With all that’s going on in this country with police, we wanted to take this night to honor our police, so we are allowing all area police and their families free admission to the festival. And there will be a time during the program that a retired policeman and other policemen will say a prayer of blessing over all of the policeman in the audience.

“We are so grateful for all our police do for us and this is a way to show our gratitude to them,” Bohn said. “We did a similar thing in 2009 with our military warriors. We honored a group called Military Warriors Support Foundation out of San Antonio, Texas.”

“It’s not just about the night, it’s about the journey before, during and after, and when we gather as a people to pray, he blesses us,” Bohn said. “It’s all about building connections. We’ve been doing praise concerts since 1997 and have helped a number of groups in the community.”

That help has manifested in everything from helping the homeless to crisis centers to helping wounded veterans.

“It’s my calling (to help),” Bohn said. “I’ve done a lot of jobs over the years and I really believe that my purpose is to praise (God), encourage others to praise him and to have faith that this is what pleases him, since we’re all volunteers who love being a part of this.”

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Sean Leary is an author, director, artist, musician, producer and entrepreneur who has been writing professionally since debuting at age 11 in the pages of the Comics Buyers Guide. An honors graduate of the University of Southern California masters program, he has written over 50 books including the best-sellers The Arimathean, Every Number is Lucky to Someone and We Are All Characters.