BALTIMORE — One of the first big events to be back at the Baltimore Convention Center since the start of the pandemic is happening this weekend.
The 26th Newsome Gospel Music Awards will be this Saturday, Dr. Bobby Jones of BET will be the host.
Dr. Frederick Ware-Newsome of Baltimore started the event years ago, to recognize gospel artists that other awards shows might have missed.
“There's a lot of amazing gospel songs you can hear that will get you over, get you through, different circumstances, different trials, different tests, gospel music to me is the bridge that brought everybody over,” he said. “It's artists from all around the country all around the world, we have artists coming from other countries now.”
Masks will be required.
But it is a sign that large events will be happening once again in Baltimore - after more than a year with not much to cheer about.
“A lot of people in Baltimore are hurting right now. The homicide rate is so high, it's just ridiculous. So we're trying to find that avenue to where we can help soothe some of that hurt, soothe some of that pain, soothe some of that trauma,” Dr. Newsome said.
He believes gospel music helped him get through a difficult year, and he hopes it might be able do the same for his home town.
“We want Baltimore to shine in a big way. Not in a negative way. We want it to shine in a big way,” he said.
In addition to the actual awards show on Saturday night, there's a number of other related events on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.