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Freebie Friday #127: Mystery Ramble trip

Free youth ministry resources every FridaySherrie Haldeman, a high school youth director in Louisville, KY, sent me the following idea on Facebook. With summer right around the corner, this sounds like an amazing relationship building time to have with kids! If you’re trying to find more ways to connect with youth group teens this summer, consider her idea:

A mystery ramble is a trip I take my high school youth on. They do not know the destination or the activities. I give them a packing list and a “fake” schedule. The schedule is not subtle clues about what we will be doing. The youth director before me started this and I have was his main chaperon before taking over. We have been to St Louis, Gulf Shores, and Ohio. We have done both a week long and a long weekend (Thursday-Monday) it depends on your group and where you want to go on the length.

Last year we ended up in Ohio in Amish country. They toured an Amish house, rode in a horse and buggy and really got to know about their culture and religion. We ended at the Alive Festival.

I find churches or friends along the [route] to house us [and] cut down on the cost.

We always try to do some kind of service project in the community we stay in: clean up trash, help with a church function etc.

This is an amazing trip to get kids to know each other better, work as a team, and see unique places along the way. Its fun to find unique things to do in other states.

On the day that we leave I give all the parents a sealed envelope with all the details of the trip. When and where we will be and all the contact stuff.

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Join us at 2:00 PM EST this afternoon in our LIVE YM Talk. Our featured guest is Mike King from YouthFront. He’ll lead us in a discussion about adolescent development and how it impacts growth and learning. See the LIVE YM Talk page for details on how to join the call and/or the live chat.


Posted on May 28, 2009

  • PJYouth Director

    I too have done mystery ramble trips – however we collect all student cell phones – unfortunately some parents were texting the destinations and killjoying the excitement of the trip.

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