For this month’s We are the World Blogfest, I’m sharing a link to a post I published in August of 2016.
I’ll give you a few minutes to read HERE and come back to the present.
UPDATE: Arts Camp is going stronger than ever and there have been a few changes of note since 2016.
In 2018, approximately 430 kids signed up for Arts Camp and this year there were about 535. The program keeps growing! It continues to be a free, week-long camp (half days) for children to explore art and their growing faith. However, this year another church in the downtown Appleton area, First English Lutheran, became involved to support the increasing number of children. The Mission Church has a big heart, but not a big church. What started out as a camp for 50 kids in 2013, has turned into a massive undertaking that requires additional venues, over 200 volunteers, lots of snacks and food for lunches, and months and months of planning so that 2019 would become another artistic, joyful and successful week for both the children and adults.
Miss Jody, the children’s pastor at Mission Church, is the brains behind Arts Camp. It was her vision and dedication to a Christian faith that started this annual event. I’m not sure how one plans and organizes a camp for over 500 children, but Jody does it with ease and determination, and plenty of help!
The goal of Arts Camp is to give opportunity to all children (3 years of age through 5th grade) in the Appleton/Fox Valley area to attend and this is why the camp is free. Also, the reason behind not moving it to a larger venue is that the church is focused on staying in the downtown area. It’s where the church’s heart and mission of Arts Camp is located.
While the intention of #WATWB is to shine a positive light on the world and its people, Arts Camp aims to shine a light on what one small church can do for its community, the children of that community, and the reflection of a loving faith.
Photos in the gallery are from Arts Camp 2019. Classes included hip-hop dance, food art, recycled/re-purpose, photography, story art, cake decorating, sewing, ukulele, jewelry, floral art, stomp, woodworking, and something called STEAM (science, technology, engingeering, art, math). On the evening of the final day, much of the artwork is displayed in a downtown hotel and a performance on stage follows with the children and their teachers. It’s a joy to see the little ones singing, dancing, playing an instrument or telling a story to the delight of their family. Arts Camp is truly an amazing week and I can’t wait to be a part of it in 2020.
The “We are the World” Blogfest is in its third year of a heartfelt journey. This blogfest’s goal is to spread the message of light, hope and love in today’s world. We are challenging all participants to share the positive side of humanity. This month’s co-hosts, Susan Scott, Peter Nena, Shilpa Garg, Mary J. Giese and Damyanti Biswas welcome participants and encourage all to join in during future months. #WATWB is a blog hop on the last Friday of every month. Click HERE to check out the intention and rules of the blogfest and feel free to sign up at any time. You are always welcome!
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