Thousands of East Texans gathered Saturday in downtown Tyler for the first of the two-day CityFest event.

The event featured music, action sports, children’s activities and opportunities to hear the Gospel.

Saturday’s scheduled performers were Ryan Stevenson, Blanca and Newsboys United. Sunday’s evening lineup includes musical artists Pat Barrett, Marisol, Neal McCoy and Lecrae. Evangelist Andrew Palau is the scheduled speaker both nights.

The festival is the culmination of about two years of planning. The Luis Palau Association is putting on the event in partnership with hundreds of area churches.

In the past week, CityFest activities have included luncheons, a rodeo, Fiesta Latina and prison outreaches.

For months prior to this weekend, East Texas churches have partnered to help the community through CityServe — a program in which teams worked to address six issues in the region that they felt churches needed to be involved with.

These issues were: foster care and adoption, racial reconciliation, homelessness, mentoring, sexual exploitation and behavioral health.

The final day of the festival kicks off at 4 p.m. Sunday with the main stage program set to start at 6 p.m.

For more information, visit CityFest East Texas on Facebook or cityfest.org.

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