E. Texas church fighting pasture party with pasture party - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

E. Texas church fighting pasture party with pasture party

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Dr. Dwayne Collins planning another pasture party. (Source: KLTV staff) Dr. Dwayne Collins planning another pasture party. (Source: KLTV staff)
Crusade at Van High School in April. (Source: Dr. Dwayne Collins) Crusade at Van High School in April. (Source: Dr. Dwayne Collins)
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VAN ZANDT COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - Plans are under way for another East Texas pasture party, but this time law enforcement isn’t as worried. You might remember several stories we shared with you about a pasture party in Van Zandt County that attracted nearly 5,000 teens. Underage drinking, assaults, major injuries and gunfire erupted at that event. In June, county officials said the event was the largest they had ever seen and was completely out of control.

“We found condoms on the ground. We found packages of those cigarillos that they use to form blunts, loading them up with marijuana. Just hundreds of these types of items on the ground,” said Constable Pat Jordan with Van Zandt County Constable Precinct Four last month.

That pasture party is now under investigation by the Texas Alcohol and Beverage Commission and the Texas Comptroller. Party promoters, who shared all the details of the event on social media sites like Twitter, could face serious charges.

Just before school let out for the summer, a crusade was held on the football field at Van High School.

“The last night we saw 3,000 people in the stands,” Dr. Dwayne Collins, one of the organizers, said.

It was a four-night event. The whole county came together to remind teens about hope and faith, honoring a student who had recently committed suicide.

“Had at least 460 young people, mostly, commit their life to Jesus Christ. We had twice that many make altar call,” Dr. Collins said.

Dr. Dwayne Collins, better known around East Texas as “Doc,” helped put that crusade together.

“We felt real proud that this had come about that everybody felt good and positive about it and then all of the sudden we look up and here’s a Ben Wheeler pasture party,” he explained.

He saw the pictures and our report on KLTV and it brought his county and those teens to mind.

“I’m sure that some of them were probably influenced to show up at the party. Some of the people that were at the crusade,” said Collins. “It was like the devil pointing his finger at us and saying you had 3,000 people I’ll show you."

The pasture party garnered nearly 5,000 attendees and sent Van Zandt County officials, parents, and teens, into a panic.

“I got on the phone to our Sheriff Lindsey Ray and our constable Pat Jordan and said what’s with this pasture party? They began to tell me about it and said ‘Oh doc you won’t believe how bad it was.’ And I said well, we’re going to have another pasture party, and they said what?”

That’s right, another pasture party, scheduled for September 6. This one, however, will have a Christian band, no alcohol, and will be more like that proud day on the high school football field. Doc said he hopes to reach out to those party promoters by using social media.

“We invite them to come. We definitely do. We want to show them a different way. We want to show them a different approach to life. Something that’s positive,” he said.

And he hopes for an even bigger turnout.

“I said the devil isn’t going to win on this issue," said Collins.

The band, a popular Christian group called Branded, has already been paid for by an anonymous citizen.

Collins said they are still planning all of the details, but a local citizen has offered his pasture and they plan on charging about $20 per car load. All proceeds will go to a good cause. Local law enforcement is working with Collins to assure the party is well-planned and legal.

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