After 19 years and the last seven of those years on the Pederson farm east of Worthing, LifeLight is changing its focus and moving back to Sioux Falls.
The LifeLight festival got its start on the church lawn in Sioux Falls where founders Alan and Vicki Greene attended church for the first three years of the festival’s existence. After outgrowing that space, they spent four years at the W.H. Lyon Fairgrounds, followed by five years on land adjacent to Wild Water West before moving to Worthing.
The Labor Day weekend music festival will see a change this year, Alan Greene said. LifeLight will host CityFest in Sioux Falls that weekend in 2017. They are partnering with Volunteers of America and Empower to start a website, www.servesiouxfalls.com.
Through Serve Sioux Falls, LifeLight hopes to unite other nonprofits and churches to help serve the city of Sioux Falls.
“Our original goal was to unite the church, unite the faith community to reach the people that are unchurched. Plenty of unchurched people come to the LifeLight festival and we’re very grateful for that, but our calling is to go,” Greene said. “The biblical calling for us as Christians is to go to them. We feel our 20th anniversary is time to go back into the city.”
Greene sees LifeLight’s mission as serving less fortunate people and putting resources into reaching people in a different way than one massive festival.
Starting July 4, they will kick off 60 days of service leading up to CityFest. During those 60 days, Greene hopes to unite people to work on projects like cleaning up a neighborhood or helping the homeless.
At CityFest, which Greene is still working on securing a location for, the festival will be different than what LifeLight festival-goers are used to.
“It’ll be really purposely inviting all of those folks, whether they’re homeless, whatever they are, inviting them to the festival and then having booths set up to meet some of their needs,” Greene said. “Maybe a job fair, dental and medical, free hair cuts, food, clothing, all those sort of things and then shining a light on the ministries that are already operating.”
While LifeLight has moved onto a new place and new philosophy, Greene said they are grateful to the Pederson family for the use of their land for the last seven years. The Pedersons let LifeLight use the land at no charge for as long as the festival was there. Greene said the transition has been smooth.
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