03/24/2016 09:14 EDT | Updated 03/24/2016 09:59 EDT

Garth Brooks Hamilton: Syrian Refugees Booted From Hotels To Make Room For Fans

Eric Jamison/Invision/AP
Garth Brooks performs during the Sinatra 100 - An All-Star Grammy concert at The Wynn Las Vegas, Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2015. (Photo by Eric Jamison/Invision/AP)

HAMILTON -- An influx of Garth Brooks fans to Hamilton, Ont., is temporarily pushing some Syrian refugee families out.

Various media reports say more than 200 Syrian refugees were bumped from their accommodations at downtown Hamilton hotels to make way for thousands of Brooks fans who already booked rooms.

The country music legend is playing a series of concerts in the city Thursday through Sunday night.

Reports say the refugees were shuttled to St. Catharines -- about 55 kilometres away -- to stay at another hotel for the duration of the shows.

Wesley Urban Ministries handles the reception of government-assisted refugees, helping them find places to stay as they search for permanent housing in the region.

Emails for comment late Wednesday were not immediately returned, while both the office of Hamilton mayor Fred Eisenberger and management for Brooks were also not available for comment.

Brooks rolls into Hamilton on Thursday night as part of a global comeback tour launched in late 2014. Many of the hotel rooms were quickly booked when tickets first went on sale.

The performer is one of country's most endearing stars with hit singles like "Friends in Low Places" and "Thunder Rolls."

His wife Trisha Yearwood will also take the stage to perform song of her most popular songs, including "How Do I Live" and "Georgia Rain."

Five shows are scheduled over four days at the FirstOntario Centre.


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