Barbie Perkins-Cooper, Author

Living Life in the Country As A Writer, Photographer


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Editorial Note: UPDATE

NEW 2013 High Res images now available for download

Calvin Gilmore and cast are available for interviews.


Annual Carolina Opry Christmas Special offers big changes blended with tradition

The Carolina Opry Christmas Special, “The Christmas Show of the South,” currently in its 28th season, brings you its most memorable production yet.

Owner, producer, and entertainer Calvin Gilmore, while deep into 2013 holiday show preparations, is pleased with what he describes as “the best ever.” The 2013 Christmas show brings stunning changes neatly blended with time-honored tradition. New talent mingles with acclaimed rotating artists and long-standing Opry favorites.

In addition to a holiday brass section, there are several new vocalists in store. For the first time on the Carolina Opry stage, vocalist Colton Cason debuts with his smooth as silk renditions of crooner classics. Plus, La Toya London has extended her summer run with the Opry to be there through Christmas. La Toya was featured in this season’s American Idol show as one of “The Three Divas,” grouped with Oscar-winner Jennifer Hudson and R&B powerhouse Fantasia Barrino. Colton and La Toya are joined by long-time favorites Tangena Church (returning after a season of sabbatical) and rotating artist Rocky Fretz. Rocky, now a fixture on the international scene, was a member of the original Carolina Opry cast in 1986, and has been dazzling its audiences for over 27 years.

“All That,” stars of NBC’s America’s Got Talent this summer, will also return with all new dance material—and some big surprises. All of these are joined by an award-winning cast of over 35 including Calvin Gilmore, Rita Gumm, Christie Templeton, Brad Long, Kym “Bogie” Shurbutt, Eric Gumm, Gary Baker, Trent Wideman, Gary Brown, Martha Brown, Kevin Hughes, Jeff Simmons, Kevin White, Steve Wilkerson, The Carolina Opry Dancers—and a real horse-drawn sleigh and real snow!

The holiday decor at The Calvin Gilmore Theater is an art form, and an attraction in and of itself. In a dramatic one-week shut-down, the transformation into a winter wonderland begins as the crew spends all night and the entire following week preparing over 35 Christmas trees, 75 wreaths, 5 miles of tree lighting wire, countless tree ornaments, and mounds of Christmas snow, all presided over by the stunning 30-foot tree with more than 25,000 lights. Award winning producer, director and performer Calvin Gilmore said recently, “Right now, families and groups need light-hearted entertainment more than ever before. We are pulling out all the stops to make this the most amazing, funny, warm and wonderful show ever.” He adds, “Wait until you hear our show-stopper. Not even going to give you a hint of what it is.” The Carolina Opry is the only show in Myrtle Beach to be touted as “the real thing.” Real talent, real production values, real entertainment—the “Top attraction in Myrtle Beach” according to CNBC, and a holiday tradition for over twenty-six years. The Carolina Opry Christmas Special brings the warm, wonderful, and fun spirit of Christmas to life with music, comedy and dance. The original Christmas show at the beach—and universally regarded as the best Christmas show in the county—this show is at the top of every Myrtle Beach holiday itinerary. Shows run November 1, 2013 through January 4, 2014, with regular evening performances and selectively scheduled matinees. For a full schedule visit and to book tickets call 800-843-6779.

More About The Carolina Opry

Gilmore Entertainment has long been the leader of musical variety show entertainment in the Southeast, with the classic Carolina Opry show and their newest hit, Good Vibrations. Gilmore and his Carolina Opry have been featured by USA TodayABC Nightly NewsSouthern Living MagazineVariety, and a host of other newspapers and television shows. It is the only Myrtle Beach show to receive the coveted South Carolina Governor’s Cup, as well as being voted South Carolina’s Most Outstanding Attraction. In recent years, Gilmore has performed regularly on the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, and he is designated as South Carolina’s Official Country Music Ambassador.



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