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A chorus of choruses to sing in the Christmas season in East County

Holiday concerts take place through December

If you’re a fan of choral music, the coming month may be the most wonderful time of the year.

Ten community and school choirs will perform at various sites throughout East County and Portland.

Here’s a summary of the upcoming shows:

Gresham Community Choir

The Gresham Community Choir will perform an hour-long concert at 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 7, in the Reynolds High School Performing Arts Center, 1698 S.W. Cherry Park Road, Troutdale.

If you want to show up about 15 minutes early, you can participate in an audience caroling sing-along.

Admission is free, and Santa will be there.

The choir will collect canned food and nonperishables from concert-goers for homeless veterans.

Choral selections include “Welcome Christmas,” from “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” “One Small Child” and “Zat’ you Santa Claus,” which choir director Annette Steele says is “kind of a jazz number” and “hilarious.”

Steele notes the group has about 65 members, ranging from ages 14 through 95, who rehearse Monday evenings in the fall and spring. New members are always welcome, and if you can’t afford the membership fee of $40 for one term, fall or spring, financial aid is available.

For more information, call Steele at 503-784-4790 or visit “Gresham Community Choir” on facebook.com.

Gresham Christmas Choir

The Gresham Christmas Choir will perform at 3 and 5 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 14, at First Baptist Church, 224 W. Powell Blvd. Admission is free.

The 70-member choir will perform such songs as “The Virgin Mary Had a Baby Boy” and “Tell It On The Mountain” during its hour-long show. The members range in age from 14 through 94, notes Brian Gerards, choir director.

“It’s a wonderful picture of the Christmas season,” Gerards says of his group’s show, adding the performance will include a narration that ties the songs together, as well an instrumental octet to provide accompanying music.

For more information, call 503-666-6562 or email bgerards@hotmail.com.

Grotto festival

The Grotto’s annual Festival of Lights features several choirs, including a number from East County, singing through Tuesday, Dec. 30. The Catholic shrine is at 8840 N.E. Skidmore St., Portland.

The Grotto is open from 5-9:30 p.m., but closed Christmas Day.

Admission is $10, $9 for seniors, $5 for children 3 to 12, and free for those 2 and younger.Photo Credit: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO - Students at Gresham High School will join choirs from throughout East County to sing at the Grotto in Portland this December.

East County choirs perform on the following dates:

Friday, Dec. 5 — 6 p.m., Corbett Cardinal Middle School Choir.

Saturday, Dec. 6 — 6 p.m., Centennial Middle School C’s.

Friday, Dec. 12 — 5:15 p.m., Sandy High School Choir.

Tuesday, Dec. 16 — 6 p.m., Centennial High School Concert Choir.

Thursday, Dec. 18 — 7 p.m., Estacada High School Choir & Brass Ensemble; 9 p.m., Gresham High School Concert Choir.

Monday, Dec. 29 — 5:15 p.m., Corbett High School Strings.

For more information, call 503-261-2400 or visit thegrotto.org.

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