Editor's Note: As the end of 2018 approaches, Charisma is looking back at the major events of the year, from Billy Graham's death to sexual assault stories to wildfires to the historic North Korea summit and everything in between. The following is one of our top stories of the year. The information presented in the story was accurate at the time of reporting. Continue to follow Charisma News for all the latest updates for these stories and more.
This article was published May 7th.
Walt Disney World cancelled Night of Joy, an annual Christian music festival held on Disney property in Orlando for more than 30 years.
The elimination of the Night of Joy event was part of the resort's philosophy of "continually changing our offerings," a Disney spokesperson tells the Orlando Sentinel.
The event featured top Christian artists including: MercyMe, TobyMac, Natalie Grant, Danny Gokey, Matt Maher, Colton Dixon, Rend Collective, Zach Williams, Amy Grant, Steven Curtis Chapman, Kirk Franklin, Jordan Feliz, Crowder, Jeremy Camp and Tye Tribbett.
According to the Orlando Sentinel, the event began in 1983 at Magic Kingdom, where it remained for most of its 35-year run. The last two years, it was held at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex. The second night of the 2017 event was called off because of the threat of Hurricane Irma.
Disney will, however, host Christian artists at its annual Food and Wine Festival held at Epcot each year. This year, MercyMe is scheduled to perform Sept. 4-5, and Tauren Wells will take the stage Sept. 8-9 for the Eat to the Beat Concert Series.
Apart from Disney, Orlando theme parks host many Christian festivals, including Universal Studios' Rock the Universe and Sea World's Praise Wave.
Jesus Culture, For King and Country, Toby Mac, Lauren Daigle, Family Force 5, Trip Lee and Andy Mineo are all on the line-up for Rock the Universe, to be held September 7-8.
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