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Skaneateles churches form new version of Vacation Bible School

Vacation Bible Blast offers one-day, family-oriented program

— Churches of the Skaneateles Clergy Association are experimenting with a new form of vacation bible school this summer that will consolidate the event to a one-day affair and invite parents to participate.

The clergy association, after taking a one-year hiatus from vacation bible school to create a new program, is introducing what they call “Vacation Bible Blast.” It will be a one day program at Austin Park with numerous activities for children and adults alike.

“This is an experiment, definitely a new start to a new series of Vacation Bible School,” said Rev. Joellyn Tuttle of Skaneateles Methodist Church, one of the coordinators of the event. “We’ll see how this model works and how people respond to it. But I’m excited how it’s all come together. We have great people and great material.”

The clergy association decided to change the direction of its summer bible school because it began to get “overwhelming” in terms of the number of kids who attended and the need to find enough qualified staff, each of whom had to go through a screening process and have a background check, Tuttle said.

Instead of going through the time-consuming process of finding staff, the coordinators found volunteers for Vacation Bible Blast through their church congregations.

The coordinators also wanted to “come up with the best way for kids to experience the Bible,” Tuttle said.

Vacation Bible Blast will include the same activities as Vacation Bible School, but attendees will take turns at different stations, including three Bible study stations, arts and crafts, music and dance, the latter of which will be provided by Luis Molino from Dance More.

This new version of Vacation Bible School also will allow parents to attend with their children. “We’re keeping families together which will accommodate a lot of kids. It’s going to be a generational experience,” Tuttle said.

The new Vacation Bible Blast event will be held from 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday, July 22, at Austin Park. Families who are interested in attending are encouraged to register this week.

Registration forms are at all church offices or via email to stmarysofthelakereled@verizon.net.

Nikki Treleaven is an Eagle Newspapers contributor. She can be reached at editor@skaneatelespress.com.

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