Former MLB star to perform at lake Friday

Published 12:00 am Sunday, June 29, 2008

Christian singer/songwriter and former Major League Baseball player Kent Bottenfield will perform at G.R.A.C.E.’s Marina on July 4 at 7 p.m.

The marina has become a popular hub for spectators of the annual fireworks show on Lake Mitchell, and owners Kevin and Rebecca George wanted to do something special this year.

“People started showing up with lawn chairs, so we decided to do a July Fourth celebration,” Kevin George said. “It’s open to everyone. We welcome anyone who wants to come down and join us.”

Bottenfield, who lives in Nashville, has released two Christian music albums, the latter being 2007’s “Back in the Game,” which features the hit single “A Son of My Own.” This song reached No. 6 on the CRW inspirational chart.

“God is doing some incredible things with the music,” Bottenfield says on his Web site, “My goal is to stay focused on the responsibility and calling I have from God to reach all of those listeners with His message of salvation, hope and encouragement.”

Bottenfield had a Major League Baseball career spanning nearly 10 years from 1992 to 2001, as a starting pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals and several other teams. In 1999 he played in the MLB All-Star game.

“I think he is a very good contemporary Christian artist, but he also has a very inspirational story he shares with people,” George said of Bottenfield.

The praise team from Chestnut Creek Baptist Church will also be performing. The event is free, including parking, and there is a snack store on the site.

The fireworks display will begin at 9 p.m., and is put on by area resident Jim McCormick and the Lake Mitchell Home Owners and Boat Owners Association. Music to the show will be broadcast over 96.9 FM.

“It’s pretty cool when you’re in the water and they shoot [the fireworks] up right above you,” George said.

Directions to G.R.A.C.E.’s Marina are as follows: From I-65 Exit 205, take Highway 31 South three miles to Cooper, turn left on County Road 24, after three miles turn left on County Road 59, go three more miles and you can’t miss the marina.