Music Festivals 101 (part 5)
Having just returned from a rather sizable Christian Music Festival, I thought it best to debrief myself by sharing my experience with you. This is part one in a small series, so please make sure to check out the other parts…
Just a nice little wrap-up post for all the little tidbits that did not fit into other posts…
- Take a camera – you never know when great opportunities for pictures will arise.
- Take a video camera – same as with a camera, and you can also put together a highlight/memory video for your teens to help them remember the week, and for your congregation to see what you did. I myself and putting together DVD’s with a lot of video on them for our teens and for our church library.
- Establish disciplinary procedures beforehand – We have an annual Medical Release and Permission form that includes our disciplinary procedures on it for every trip we take (the general ones with a clause thrown in that informs students and parents that event-specific rules may be added, and then we inform them what those might be at a meeting prior to the event). This form also details that in the event that a teen does not comply, they may be sent home at the parent’s expense.
- Remind your teens of the importance of closing their tents – Our middle school girls left the campsite with their tent wide open on Thursday. Knowing that telling them to close their tent would not work, and I would be closing it again the next day, I removed a bag that belonged to each girl, locked them in the van and left the tent open. I remained at the site so as to watch out for the tent and the girls, and when they got back (after swearing up and down that they closed their tent when I watched them all three walk away from the site) explained to them that I had done so in order to remind them of the importance of closing their tens and to protect their belongings. (They then got their stuff back). Then after lunch one of the guys’ tents did the same thing AFTER LAUGHING AT THE GIRLS’ MISFORTUNE! And the girls did it again on Saturday!
- Take a white board – Use it for checking in and out of the campsite so leaders know where students are.
- Have students prepare meals – They need to. It helps to have them serve the group, and they just might appreciate others’ service a little bit more as a result.
- Don’t be afraid to take a portable CD player – You are at a music festival. Your teens will buy CD’s. They will want to listen to those CD’s. And we did not allow them to bring personal CD players. Everyone wins if you bring a CD player.
- Take ear plugs – This is especially for those leaders who are older or simply want to protect their hearing at the concerts. Or sleep at night…
- Pray – A lot.
- Remember that God placed you in this position for a reason. So make the most of it. Listen to a band you have never heard before with a teen. Accompany them to a speaker. Go swimming with them. Love them. That is why you are there. Don’t forget that…