Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Number ONE question

The number One question I am asked is "how do you run Blacklight dodgeball"

Here are my thoughts on how we did it...

You need to blackout the room pretty well, so it will be tricky to tell who was hit (even if people are wearing white) so just be aware of that as you go into it - it will be more about the experience than the competition!!

We purchased white dodge balls but they didn’t reflect the UV too well so we sprayed them with neon paint which worked brilliantly - orange and pink seemed to be the best. Then we sprayed some painters overalls for the judges to wear.

I rented the black lights from they are super helpful and can advise how many you'll need, at the time they charged $100 each.

They mail the lights to you a day or so prior to your event and then you mail them back in the same boxes etc. I paid for prepaid shipping labels (around $10 per unit) so the day after all I had to was stick the label on and Fedex them back.

Crank up the music, add a few siren lights or whatever strange lighting effects you have lying around from the last smoothie bar event you ran and that's it.

Super fun game to run in the middle of the night at camp!!

Student Leaders at Summer Camp

Our Summer Camp has traditional only been available to students entering grades 9 through 12 that following Fall.

This year we are using a team made up of some of our current 12th graders to help us plan and execute Summer Camp. This has been offered to students that we feel will respond well to this type of task and training, who love camp and who have remained engaged and active in the ministry through their Senior year.

Not only does this increase number of students that camp is available to, it also provides a unique training opportunity. These Student Leaders will follow a fairly intensive leadership track at camp that balances working to run camp with being spiritually fed and challenged at the same time. They will be stretched in terms of leadership, responsibility and in their relationship with Jesus. In addition to meeting together to plan they will have their own debrief/devotional track that runs parallel to the other students. Plus we get the benefit of their creative input and energy!

It'll be hard work but hugely rewarding and I can't wait to see how it turns out! At the end of camp student leaders will receive a letter of recommendation from HSM (plus an incredible week to finish their time in HSM).

Here's a question...

I received a question regarding rooming in a hotel at a student minsitry event so I thought I'd share....

Q: I'm contacting some of the other bigger churches to ask a question on how you organize rooms on retreats when it comes to hotel rooms. Recently we had a concern from two parents about one of our last trips. One was worried if there was no adult in the room who would keep someone from bullying her son. The other parents concern was she didn't want an adult sleeping in the same room as her middle school son. Do you put only students in a room together or do you put students and one adult? And what is your ultimate reasons behind your decision?

A: I have run events for both Junior High and High School Students using hotels. For Junior High we would always have an adult in each room. I request 2 Queen beds (4 students) and then usually provide an air mattress for the leader. For High School events I have had a leader overseeing 2 rooms, usually with an adjoining door if possible but this isn’t my ideal. Usually the co-leader would look after the additional room.

We have used hotel suites before that have a bedroom with 2 Queens and then a pullout in the living room which separates leaders/students. All our leaders have been cleared and fingerprinted by DoJ and interviewed by our staff before they are approved to be leaders in our ministry.

In my previous church in the UK we wouldn’t put adults and children together but I also wouldn’t have used a hotel unless I could have exclusive use of it (or at least the entire floor). Unfortunately you have to gauge your culture and then defend your decision.

Any other thoughts?