Eight years ago, in the midst of the Great Recession, members of Silver Creek United Methodist Church started Jesus Jam as a way to help out their community. Now, the event continues as a gathering for anyone looking to have fun and enjoy fellowship.

The Jam, which runs Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., will take place in Willard Nixon Park, across from the church. Radio personality Nelle Reagan will serve as emcee.

Cheryl Willoughby, coordinator for the event, says the afternoon will be filled with free food, music, and activities for children like inflatables, games, and balloon animal making. The menu is grilled hot dogs, with assorted sides and drinks provided.

The music festivities kick off on the flat bed trailer stage with the band Unchained at 11:15 a.m., followed by soloist Kati Hulsey, then the Trinity United Methodist Church Praise Band at 1 p.m., and the Just As I Am Choir at 1:45 p.m., before everything wraps up with the West Rome Baptist Worship team.

Every fourth Saturday of the month, Silver Creek United Methodist holds a free community lunch in the fellowship hall. When September rolls around, however, they put on the Jesus Jam, the need for which arose during the 2008 financial crisis.

“When we first started, the economy was really going through a rough patch, and we wanted to do something for the community,” says Willoughby. That led to the creation of the event, which drew between 200-300 people last year.

“Our emphasis is, this is not a fundraiser at all. We want to do something for the community, to be a part of the community, and at the same time, we put in some Jesus,” Willoughby said.

Willard Nixon Park sits on a beautiful creek, which provides a nice setting, says Willoughby. The park belongs to the church but is always open and available. All Floyd County area residents are invited to attend Jesus Jam.

“You don’t have to live in Silver Creek. We will be there no matter what, and nobody has to spend a dime.”