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October 26, 2012

'Elvis' is back in the ... auditorium

GREENVILLE — Amidst a crowd of fans gathered Friday night in the Greenville Municipal Auditorium, tribute artist Kraig Parker donned the Elvis attire and played some of Elvis’s greatest hits.

Bob Mason, executive director of United Way of Hunt County, said this came about because of a conversation with a friend.

“A friend of mine, Charles Stone, was Elvis Presley’s road manager for seven years,” he said. “We were talking about how United Way was looking about ways to supplement our donations when he offered to do the show.”

The United Way of Hunt County served more than 30,000 people this year, and Mason said the funds raised will help meet the growing need.

“We are doing this because the need is so great in Greenville,” Mason said.

Mason said he partnered with the GMA to be able to bring the show to Greenville.

“We are very grateful of Greenville allowing us to partner with them in this,” Mason said. “The show is everything we hoped for and we’ve had a great turnout.”

Mason said he also felt nostalgic about having Parker perform a tribute for Elvis.

“It’s wonderful for Parker to be on the same stage that Elvis was on in the 50’s,” he said.

More than 200 people filled the auditorium, and Kimber Patterson, recreation coordinator/venue manager for GMA, said she was not surprised because of who was coming.

“We thought they would like this because he memorializes a legend,” she said.

According to Patterson, GMA chose Parker because they believe him to be the best.

“A lot of Elvis fans came to support Kraig,” she said. “A lot are followers of him because they think he’s the best tribute artist of Elvis.”

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