Creative Summer Ideas for Church Outreach Programs

Schools out and that means travel and vacations for many families. But what about working parents who struggle to find positive, engaging activities for their children during the day?

Working parents face unique challenges during summer months, and churches have a great opportunity to help Moms and Dads by offering creative youth and camp summer activities for their communities. Parents in your community would be thrilled to find free activities for their kids that are healthy, fun and even educational. Your church could be a source for these types of activities, as provided by Outreach Church Ideas and Tools:

  • Summer carnivals – By the second week of summer break, kids are already bored. Hold a summer carnival as a two-pronged “hook”—for the kids, it’s a kick-off to your VBS, and for their parents, it’s an avenue to hand out Invitation Cards announcing your summer sermon series. Bring in a “bounce house,” some face painters and some games, then invite your whole community.
  • Vacation Bible School – Look for fresh ways to provide this fun and educational event for kids in your area. Do most parents work? Then hold the VBS in the evenings, or hold it one day a month—say, on Fridays—and use the afternoon time to take kids to the beach, a local water park, the movies, etc. Of course, kids can pay to attend the optional afternoon events. Is time at a premium? Then host the VBS on five consecutive Saturday mornings.
  • Day Camps/Local Field Trips – Hosting a summer Day Camp program can help working parents with their childcare issues. Your church can become a safe and fun alternative to babysitters.

If day camps are too ambitious for the size of your church, you could host a Mom’s Day Out just two mornings a week. Deliver door hangers to your neighbors that double as a coupon for one free visit. Your church can be a great source for inexpensive activities like:

  • Movie nights
  • VBS & youth programs
  • BBQs & social events
  • Camps
  • Drama & music classes
  • Concerts & sing-a-longs
  • Dance & aerobics classes

Out-of-school months could also be a great time to teach and invest in the next generation of musicians, singers and creative artists. You might engage your worship and creative arts team to offer classes for children who have an interest in music and the arts, both in your church member families and surrounding community.

Here are some other summer ideas you may want to consider, as cited by Lifeway.

  • Do a free outdoor family movie night, projecting on a large exterior wall.
  • Challenge every church member to plan a “Cookout with Your Neighbors” at their home sometime during July to develop friendships and invite neighbors to church.
  • You can expand your church-wide picnic into a city-wide event, with special invitations to VBS and church daycare families?
  • Invite the community to attend your kids’ camps, Vacation Bible School or Wednesday night salad suppers. You may be surprised how many participate when invited!
  • For the Sunday prior to July 4th, plan a “red, white and blue jean” Sunday. Invite local government leaders to attend your worship service, present them a gift, and voice a prayer for them.
  • Outdoor Concert: Invite the entire community to a free outdoor concert on the church lawn.

Music greatly enhances any summer program, and CCS’s PERFORMmusic License makes it simple and easy for you to legally play and perform more than 20 million songs anywhere on your campus during all your programs and activities. Annual fees start as low as $229/year covering Christian, holiday and all music genres from ASCAP, BMI and SESAC.

Thinking about streaming any of these programs on your website? Not a problem…you can legally feature your music with the WORSHIPcast License, the ONLY one-stop streaming performance license covering 20 million songs.

About Christian Copyright Solutions: CCS’s quest is to help churches and Christian ministries “do music right.”  CCS is an expert on church music copyrights and our primary focus is providing licensing and clear educational resources to churches, as well as representation, administration and advocacy for copyright owners. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Youtube. The information contained herein is for informational purposes only, and is not legal advice or a substitute for legal counsel.

If you have any questions about copyright compliance requirements for your summer programs and activities, please call and talk to a CCS Rep at 855-576-5837 to discuss your specific licensing needs.