2017 will mark 40 years of country music legend Ronnie McDowell making music that impacts the lives of others. For 38 of those, he has also been changing the lives of children in need from his hometown of Portland, Tennessee with a special Christmas shopping trip they will remember for years to come.
McDowell teamed up with elementary schools and countless community volunteers to transport 30 children on five tour buses to a local Walmart for a $100 shopping spree just days before Christmas. This year the buses were lent to the worthy cause by fellow country stars Garth Brooks, Josh Turner and more.
McDowell decided to make spirits even brighter by dressing up like Santa Claus as the kids shopped for clothes, dolls, bicycles and everything else on their wish list. Following the shopping trip, the group headed to a local fast food restaurant for dinner and treats.
This event makes my Christmas every year. I cannot fathom, as one of 10 children to a mother that worked three jobs, what something like this would have meant to me as a kid growing up in Portland, Tennessee. That’s why I do it,” said McDowell.
Known for more than thirty Top 40 hits, including chart-toppers “The King Is Gone,” “Older Women” and “You’re Gonna Ruin My Bad Reputation,” the warm-hearted country hitmaker recently released his first ever autobiography about his illustrious music career “Bringing It To You Personally.”