Today on the Podcast I interviewed my friend, Lars Rood, author of Youth Ministry on a ShoeString about how you can do lots of great summer events on the smallest of budgets! You can listen [here] on iTunes or catch it here on the podcast site. For my blog readers I thought I’d share a few of the ideas shared on the podcast here, and add a few others as well:
Meet Me at the Movies: Teens love movies. Actually, we ALL love movies! It would be super easy to promote to your students that you’ll be meeting at a certain movie, at a certain theatre, at a certain time… virtually any planning and a great event! OR you can set-up a projector and screen in the church parking lot or at someone’s house and host an outdoor movie event. Both work great! (*Note* Listen to the podcast episode for this one as I share a marketing idea you can couple with it!)
Park Day: Nothing says cheap and easy quite like a park day. Just literally promote to your students that you’ll be hanging out at the park (be specific) on a certain date at a certain time and show up! Tell everyone to bring frisbees, a football (etc), and snacks for some fun!
Fast Food Fridays: Several consecutive summers in a row I hosted a “Fast Food Friday” for my students. I literally just sent out a mass text (and posted online) that we would be meeting up at Chick-Fil-a (provided the location information) at a certain time. Easy peasy!
Bigger or Better: I love this scavenger-hunt-type game. You split students into teams and send them out with a small item (just like a paper clip or a pencil) and ask them to stop by homes in friendly neighborhoods (church members or not — at your own discretion) and ask if the homeowner\friend has something they can give them that is bigger or better than the current item in their possession. It’s so much fun to see what teams return with at the end of the night. Of course, the biggest or best prize wins! So much fun!
Mall Madness: Students love the local mall. You can set aside a time to meet at the mall and just disperse into teams to shop and enjoy the mall! You can also set aside a specific time to meet up in the food court to eat together (fun!)… and if you want to make it even more interesting you can add a scavenger hunt of some sort while you’re on-site.
What cheap\easy ideas are you planning for this summer or have you beta-tested? Share in the comments.
In a recent episode of This Week in Youth Ministry podcast, I talked about how youth workers might be interested in taking a retreat this year. My friends at LeaderTreks have such quality stuff — and this is no different. They’ve put together several Refuel Retreats this year for youth workers and I shared about it on the podcast.
Refuel Retreats offer everything you’d probably experience from a conference (training, networking opportunities, relaxation) but they are hosted in an intimate setting at a much more affordable price. How awesome! I’m encouraging youth workers to make room in their calendars this year for a retreat like this. We’ve got too many people burning out… and it can be avoided. Perhaps planning some time away is the first step to getting you back on track? Contact LeaderTreks today and tell them I sent you.
Oh, and be sure to check out LeaderTreks Blog and store [here]. They offer TONS of resources to help you grow your students too. I love (and highly recommend!) their stuff!