Saturday, August 21, 2010

Top 10 Memories: Trips

A couple of years ago on a job application I was asked to estimate how many miles I had driven 15 passenger vans in my life. I couldn't really do it; the answer would be staggering! I was blessed to drive a lot of vans to a lot of places over the years. I was also blessed to accompany youth groups on buses and planes, as well as the occasional boat, to some pretty fantastic places on some pretty awesome trips. Today I remember 10 of my favorites!

10)  Walt Disney World, 1990-  The middle of our three Disney trips from Springfield Friends Meeting (also known as Floridays '90) was a great adventure. There are lots of great stories from the trip already posted here, but it will always be memorable to me for three reasons: losing Jeff Byrd, losing Jill Gilbreth and riding Mr. Toad's Wild Ride with Jeremy Godwin. And those amazing root beer floats at the A&W across the OBT from the Gold Key Inn...

  9)  Night of Joy, 2003- This was the first time I ever took a group to Disney's weekend of great Christian bands and stayed for the entire weekend. A huge group from Wesley Memorial UMC in Tampa made the trek to Orlando and stayed on-property at Disney's All-Star Sports Resort.  We took in both nights of concerts, had great times in the pool, and just generally had a spectacular weekend. I took lots of pictures, but lost my camera bag at some point while we were loading up to go home. The group shot you see here is the only evidence I have of this great weekend!

  8)  Ski Trip, 1997- The stories of this FUMC-K trip to Winterplace are endless, and most have been told here already. The frozen bus, Vern Watson peeing by the roadside, Erin Augenblick seeing flames shooting out the tailpipe, Dr. Jill forcing me to buy her chocolate cobbler at the Cracker Barrel and Jessica Overstreet sleeping in the bath tub are just a few of the moments that made this the only ski trip to make my list.

  7)  New York, 1999- Another FUMC-K trip, this was another huge group that had an amazing time together. Great memories include Jill Souther on crutches; Kay Hill and Debbie Rogers getting their hair done by real New York stylists; Jerry Hanbery repeatedly saying "Get some monkey, work that dum dum (I still have no idea what that means);" and seeing Les Miz and The Scarlet Pimpernel. It was also the week of the most fabulous meal ever, dinner for 60 at Carmine's. All of my New York trips were great, but this one was especially special!!!

  6)  Chicago, 2004- On this mission trip taken by Graceland, the student ministry of Wesley Memorial UMC, we worked hard, played hard and worshipped hard. I wrote about this adventure recently in a post on mission trip memories, but I have to say again, the worship service we shared in a small room one night on that trip is among the most significant and meaningful I have ever been a part of... 

  5)  Live To Tell, 1996- This FUMC-K mystery weekend in Myrtle Beach was memorable for so many reasons, not the least of which was the incredible amount of time we spent driving to and from our destination. We had a great time and some awesome group building experiences. We ate lots of seafood. We had Sunday morning worship on the beach.  And we did not kill Kendall Crotty... (see Live to Tell for details!).

  4)  New York, 1982- This was my final New York trip with my New Garden Friends Meeting group, and we took almost everyone! It was an amazing group, featuring superstars such as Marshall Ratledge, Ling Lee, Michael Garrett, Kim Winters, Marnee Larkins, Linc Dewar and Darek Newby, and Quaker Lake friends like Ronnie Osborne and Carla Garrett.  We had one of the best seminars that the Methodist Center at the United Nations ever did for us. Lots of great memories, lots of great people.

  3)  Myrtle Beach, 1989- No countdown would be complete without at least one week at the Betsy B! This Springfield Friends Meeting trip featured so many memorable moments- and I have many of them on a video that I hope to share someday! Among the classic moments were Shelley Godwin getting everyone talking about Total BabesRussell Farlow and the Big K cola; Heather Beggs trying desperately to belch on camera;  early morning wake up calls for the females, and then later the males, using pots and pans; Laurie Rees and Cecily Livengood meeting their very own Mike and Mike on the beach; Judy Rees and Brockie Farlow imitating Heather and Keri Vinson; the big KISS concert featuring Jon Moran, Mike Mercadante, Patrick Tillman and Danny McCorquodale; and of course, everyone taking every opportunity to rag on Todd Farlow for not being there! An amazing week!

  2)  Spanish Wells, 1997-  You can read all about this trip by clicking here. But seriously, how can a trip (even a supposed working trip) to the Bahamas NOT make this list? One of the great weeks on my life, no doubt about it!

  1)  Walt Disney World, 1993The Magic Tour was just that- a week full of magical adventures at Disney's Caribbean Beach Resort for the youth of Springfield Friends Meeting. It took me 19 posts to this blog to cover this trip, so to read all about it just look to the LABELS box at the lower right hand side and click on Magic Tour. From the Polynesian Luau to The Comedy Warehouse to the Hoop-de-doo Musical Revue, this trip simply rocked. For me, it will always be the standard against which all other youth group trips are measured.

So there you have it- my list of favorite trips.  Which trips would make your list?  Did I leave out your favorite New York or Myrtle Beach trip?  I would love to hear from you (hint, hint!) and discover what you remember- and who you remember.  Because as I will write about tomorrow, the people are what made this all special!  The people, and Jesus!

Because of Jesus,


  1. Anonymous8/21/2010

    Last Gasp any year- personal favorite the Mary night my first youth trip can't even do the math at this point but ya that trip. Water fights with conner and Courtney. Great beach. Great music and worship

  2. You are right- there should be a Last Gasp Summer Blowout on the list. Those were all great trips, and the one you refer to with the MARY worship was really good...


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