By Amber Jurgensen | Staff Writer
Before walking into the doors of the Evelyn and Batista Madonia Sr. Agricultural Center July 29, members of Plant City’s First Baptist Church knew they were in for more than just a normal church celebration.
Rows and rows of dusty trucks filled the parking lot. The smell of barbecue wafted through the air. Three men sat atop majestic horses greeting those who entered the building. The riders weren’t the only ones dressed like cowboys. Both visitors and members of Plant City’s First Baptist Church put on their cowboy hats, pulled on their boots, rolled up their sleeves and tied up their shirts for the first off-site service in more than a year.
More than 100 people attended Cowboy Church, and more than 30 people were baptized in two metal troughs. Among the baptized was Judy Glorioso, Florida state Rep. Rich Glorioso’s wife.
“I really believe we had a great attendance, and it was probably a little more than we anticipated (because) it is summer, and we knew a lot of people were out of town,” the Minister of Senior Adults Claude Walker says. “It was a great time of fellowship and renewal.”
The church had performed off-site worship services before, including a similar service on the festival grounds in 2009.