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Country star John Berry returning to Detroit Lakes for Dec. 8 holiday show

Though it's been a few years since country singer John Berry has graced the stage of Detroit Lakes' Historic Holmes Theatre, he's happy to be returning with his holiday tour this Thursday, Dec. 8, for a 7:30 p.m. show.

John Berry Christmas.JPG
John Berry performs a Christmas song on Dec. 19, 2019. Berry will be bringing his holiday tour back to Detroit Lakes for the first time since 2019 this Thursday, Dec. 8, 2022, at 7:30 p.m.
Contributed / Moments By Moser Photography
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DETROIT LAKES — Not even a global pandemic can keep country singer John Berry from his fans.

"If there were people hiring, we were going — just being cautious," said Berry in a recent telephone interview, talking about how much COVID-19 affected his touring schedule over the past couple of years. "I've hardly taken any time off."

But it has been a few years since he's been to Detroit Lakes: His last visit was for a Christmas show in 2019. And it's his annual holiday tour that's bringing him back to the Historic Holmes Theatre stage this Thursday, Dec. 8.

"It's a remarkable theater," Berry said of the Holmes, where he has performed eight shows since 2005. "It's always a lot of fun playing there."

More on John Berry's past appearances at the Holmes Theatre
The name John Berry has been a familiar one on the marquee at Detroit Lakes' Historic Holmes Theatre over its 17-year history: The singer-songwriter from Georgia has made six visits to the community since 2005, and performed at the venue seven times.

Though the format of Berry's show will be familiar, with his non-holiday hits and favorite tunes taking up the first half, and the Christmas theme dominating the second half, it may include a few songs that are less familiar to those who have attended his previous performances at the local venue.

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"We have a new album out, called 'Find My Joy,' and it's a collection of six old church hymns like 'How Great Thou Art,' and we have four new songs of faith as well," Berry said. "Steve Dorff produced the record."

Dorff is responsible for writing or co-writing four of the songs on "Find My Joy," including the title track. It wasn't one that Berry wanted to hear — at first.

"That particular song was sent to me by my manager in the fall of 2019, when I was still going through recovery from throat cancer," he said. "I had lost about 80 pounds. I was miserable — the unhappiest person on the planet — and I saw the song title and I couldn't even listen to it. I thought 'what joy?'

"The problem was, I was basing my joy on my circumstances," said Berry. "It took me a long time to come to the realization that I had to find my joy in Christ. I finally listened to it (the song), and it really spoke to me. it touched my heart, and I think it will others as well."

The album "Find My Joy" is one that Berry is particularly proud of: "It's just a lovely record. I'm just thrilled about it."

As a result, Detroit Lakes concert-goers will likely hear several of the tunes from that album on Thursday night. But of course, they'll also hear his hits: Berry says he's honored when a fan comes up to him to say they used one of his songs at a special event in their lives, like a wedding or "something like that."

"It's so cool that they thought enough of a song of mine to use it at a time that is so important in their lives," he said.

In addition to his regular show on Thursday, which starts at 7:30 p.m., Berry will also be doing a special meet-and-greet with fans in the Holmes Ballroom at 6 p.m., including a special acoustic performance along with opportunities for photos and autographs.

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If you go

What: Celebrate Christmas with John Berry
Where: Historic Holmes Theatre, 806 Summit Ave., Detroit Lakes
When: Thursday, Dec. 8, 7:30 p.m., with meet-and-greet 'VIP Experience' in the Holmes Ballroom at 6 p.m.
How: Tickets for the show are $34 for adults, $17 for students, plus $20 for the VIP Experience, and can be purchased online at dlccc.org/holmes-theatre.html , by phone at 218-844-7469, or in person at the Holmes Box Office, open 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Tuesday through Friday as well as for two hours prior to the show.

Related Topics: DETROIT LAKESBECKER COUNTY
A reporter at Detroit Lakes Newspapers since relocating to the community in October 2000, Vicki was promoted to Community News Lead for the Detroit Lakes Tribune and Perham Focus on Jan. 1, 2022. She has covered pretty much every "beat" that a reporter can be assigned, from county board and city council to entertainment, crime and even sports. Born and raised in Madelia, Minnesota, she is a graduate of Hamline University, from which she earned a bachelor's degree in English literature (writing concentration). You can reach her at vgerdes@dlnewspapers.com.
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