Fall Festival of Missions
Fall is here! With it comes great outdoor weather and fall festivals in your community. Whether they are hosted at your church or association, or at a local school or county venue, festivals provide great opportunities to show families how much fun Mission Friends can be for their preschoolers. Consider sponsoring a booth at one of these fall events.
*Arrange everything in the booth for the height of preschoolers. Get on your knees to see their viewpoint and set up the booth.
*You want preschoolers to be drawn in, so display items you want them to see right up front. Your attention to detail will show parents that you understand preschoolers, care about them, and want to serve them.
*Decorate with vibrant colors. Primary colors are great eye catchers for preschoolers. But keep the overall display simple so as not to overstimulate them.
*At adult eye level, display current issues of Mission Friends Leader, prepared kit items from the Mission Friends Leader Kit, and a few other items such as Always Remember to Pray or One Little Child.
*Prepare a flyer inviting families to bring preschoolers to Mission Friends. Include meeting times and location. Attach a fun pencil or age appropriate trinket as an incentive for preschoolers to take the flyer.
Create a Super FUN Activity Booth:
- Enlist volunteers to help at the booth. Mission Friends leaders would be wonderful at connecting with preschoolers and parents. Ask some volunteers to engage with parents and answer questions, while others focus on preschoolers and the game, project, or booth activity.
- Plan a game. Preschoolers like simple games in which they can quickly succeed. Try a game from another country to bring out what preschoolers do at Mission Friends. Choose prizes that are eye catching, durable, and large enough that a child cannot swallow them. Some ideas for prizes could be inflatable balls or animals, sticker sheets, simple instruments, or small stuffed animals.
- Offer a craft project. This could be something that preschoolers make at your booth or something they can do later at home. Prepare a craft activity related to missions or a missions area. Suncatcher kits, water bottles with stickers, and hats or visors are all easy to make in your booth. Coloring booklets with crayons, kite kits, or puzzle books are great for taking home. They also provide a place to attach Mission Friends meeting details and contact information.
- Plan a seasonal activity such as painting small pumpkins or making a fall leaf wreath on paper plate rings. If an activity requires time to dry, place items on newspaper and use a marker to print a child’s name next to the drying project. Parents can return later and pick up the project, which you can place in a bag with a Mission Friends flyer and Mission Friends at Home.
- Decorate treat bags for preschoolers to use at the festival. Provide paper or canvas bags that preschoolers decorate at the booth. With each bag, include your church’s name, address, and contact information, and Mission Friends meeting information.
Remember, a festival is all about fun. Put together something that you and preschoolers will have a blast doing!
What to do if COVID-19 changes festival plans?
Prepare a Fall Festival in a Bag. Include:
- a mission story for parents to share with their child
- a copy of the monthly Mission Friends at Home
- a craft or simple game
- a prize
- a flyer that sparks interest in Mission Friends and shares meeting and location details
by Gina Smith