I have been working with youth a long time... I'm Not as "youth pastor old" as Winterjam, which was started in 1995 while I started working with youth in 1997, but close!!
There are some things I've learned through the years. We ate before we came. We didn't wait in the line but 20 minutes. (Less complaining and less diversions needed by me!) Change ready to give kids so they'd have the $10 need to get in. Bright Orange hat for visually seeing where the leader is going. And FABULOUS adults to help drive, run bathroom trips, and help corral the kiddos.
Through the years I have had quite a few adventures in this land called Winterjam. One year we made it to Greenville, SC only to NOT all get seats . . . so we had to turn around and just get Dairy Queen! The giant yellow arrow made by yard sticks! The year at State College where we had pizzas delivered from Papa John's and told them to look for the Elmo helium balloon . . . and they found us!! The year we sat BEHIND the stage!! The birthday songs to random strangers. Passing out hot chocolate to others waiting in line . . . we have had adventures!
Tonight we added another memory as we have moved on to a new group of youngsters . . . and I have to chuckle because one of my younger youth who had never been to a concert before just asked me if the band that was playing (NewSong) was Skillet!! (In case you don't know...they are most DEFINITELY DIFFERENT! Newsong is most famous for Christmas Shoes...while Skillet is famous for its pyrotechnics and heavy metal music).
Winterjam isn't just about music and fun and silliness. As the speaker just said in tonight's sermon, EVERYTHING NEEDS TO BE ABOUT JESUS. And God can use this for great things.
So I just want to praise God for opportunities for memories, God's word present through Word and song, and for how we get to enjoy fellowship together.