Monday, February 11, 2013

Progressive Fast Food Dinner

The ADD Youth Pastor doing what the ADD Youth Pastor does
Old school folks will remember the happy times of progressive dinners.  The meal where your group moves from house to house eating a different part of the meal.

Last night we went old school with a twist.  We did the Progressive Fast Food Dinner which is always lots of fun.

Each student had a brown paper lunch sack.  In that sack were 4 pieces of paper each marked with a different part of the meal:
  • Drink
  • Side Item
  • Sandwich
  • Dessert
Some of the girls striking a pose at the BK
When we arrived at Wendy's the students reached into their bag and took out a piece of paper.  Whatever the paper had typed on it is what they ordered and ate (drank) at that restaurant.  We went to Wendy's then Burger King then McDonald's.  The plan was to go to Sonic but the BK took to long.

Wendy's won the award for friendliness and efficiency.  McDonald's was fast but a little stressed out.  Burger King took the longest, I think it was a shock to them and they weren't sure how to deal with it.  All 3 places were friendly and glad we stopped in.

Tips:
  • We charged $5 per kid but they obviously ate more than $5 worth of food.  We offset with our youth budget
  • Have a leader get there a few minutes before the group shows up to explain the staff of the restaurant so they can be prepared.
  • We line up at one register and have one person pray.  But you may want to give $ to different leaders and divide the groups at different cash registers.
  • Explain to the staff: "We have 40 coming in to eat BUT they are each only ordering one item so it's the equivalent of 10 customers ordering full meals."
  • Explain how the whole system works before leaving the church to your students.  
  • Have students write their names on their bag upon arrival
  • Have students line up single file if a small group or in small groups if your group is larger and then have leaders drop the slips of paper in the students' bags as they hold the bags.
  • If your group is really large it might be smart to divide and conquer and do a "shotgun" start at different restaurants.
  • Have your adult leaders drive.  Recruit some parents or adults to help if you don't have enough help
  • Take along some bottled water since some stops students won't get drinks (we forgot this one)
  • Great activity for a small group or Sunday School class
  • Allow a couple of hours so you aren't rushed, stressed and don't stress the restaurant staff.
Middle School Boys chowing down on some grindage
Be a good witness.  Coach your students before leaving the church on behavior and Who they represent.  Clean up your mess before you leave.
Compliment the restaurant staff, even if their service is poor.  We complimented the staff and one manager said, "We never get compliments."  Her face lit up.

Why do this event?  What was the purpose?  To break away from the routine of our usual youth group gathering and give the kids and adult leaders time to fellowship together.  Lot's of fun!


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