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Greater Red River Valley Crusade


Twenty-two years ago this weekend, "America's Pastor," the Reverend Billy Graham, arrived in Fargo for the Greater Red River Valley Billy Graham Crusade. After a year of planning, nearly 66,000 people packed into NDSU's Dacotah Field over the course of three days, aided by thousands of volunteers.

Governor Sinner opened the first evening, joking that "it's only fitting that a Sinner welcome" the famous evangelist. A few special guests were a part of the program, including Johnny Cash and his wife June as well as former Bison football star and New York Giants player, Stacy Robinson. But it was Billy Graham himself most had come to see. Each night he reminded the audience that "sin was the major problem of the world" before ending with his famous alter call, urging listeners "to come forward and accept Christ" while the choir sang "Just As I Am."

Dakota Datebook written by Christina Sunwall

"22,600 Attend Final Graham Crusade Service." Fargo Forum June 22, 1987.

"Crusade's Efficiency Dazzling." Fargo Forum June 21, 1987, A1, A20.

"Crusade Isn't over When It's Over." Fargo Forum June 18, 1987, B6.

"Graham Praises Crusade Volunteers." Fargo Forum June 19, 1987, A1.

"Oh, What a Crowd." Fargo Forum June 20, 1987, A1, A12.