Home Children's Ministry Leaders Articles for Children's Ministry Leaders Fall Festival Planning: 6 Tips for a Successful KidMin Harvest Event

Fall Festival Planning: 6 Tips for a Successful KidMin Harvest Event

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Fall festival planning is key to an outreach event that families love. Use these time-proven tips to plan a wildly successful carnival or harvest event. Planning your children’s ministry fall festival can be simple and fun!

How to Plan a Wildly Successful Fall Festival

1. Choose a director.

First, it makes sense to have one go-to person for the event. Choose someone who can delegate tasks and lead a team. The director is responsible for:

  • managing the budget (talk with church leaders about money that’s available from an outreach budget and/or children’s ministries),
  • asking for donations (have church members donate candy or supplies),
  • leading in recruitment, and
  • collecting supplies.

2. Form a leadership team.

The director won’t be acting alone. So you’ll also need a leadership team for this event. They’ll help with things such as:

  • Publicity: Let your church and community know the Fall Festival is coming and that they’re invited.
  • Outreach: Prepare information about your church to give visitors at the Fall Festival.
  • Booths and games: Brainstorm, create, and build games for the event.
  • Follow-up: Make contact with visitors who attended your Fall Festival. Be sure to invite them back to your church. Then make them feel welcome when they do return!
  • Evaluation: After the event, debrief with the leadership team. Take notes on what went well and what to avoid next year.

As you plan the event, involve leaders and volunteers in the decision-making and brainstorming process. By asking leaders for feedback, ideas, and suggestions from the start, you’re encouraging them to offer their input throughout the planning. You’re also making yourself more approachable. Leaders need to know you’re interested in their ideas and support their actions.

In addition, encouraging leaders to share feedback and allowing them to act on their ideas builds their confidence as they interact with children at the event. By giving leaders freedom and flexibility, you equip and motivate them to change kids’ lives through a Fall Festival.

3. Recruit volunteers.

Recruiting volunteers may not be as hard as you think. It may sound basic, but if you want volunteers, you need to ask. Asking is the missing step in most volunteer recruitment efforts. Sometimes we’ll announce a need, create posters or bulletin boards, and post sign-up sheets. Yet we don’t look potential volunteers in the eye and ask, “Will you help?”

If you settle for publicizing your event in the hope that publicity will generate volunteers, you’ll be disappointed. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Most people are eager to roll up their sleeves and work together to serve the community with a fun outreach event.

You may also be surprised at how few volunteers you’ll need for a Fall Festival. Depending on your church size, you may need only a few volunteers to pull off a truly dynamic event. One church had 800 kids attend a Fall Festival but only four leaders and 20 volunteers to run the booths and activities. And they pulled it off!

When recruiting volunteers, involve parents wherever possible. Parents play a significant role in kids’ spiritual lives.

For a fall festival, parents can:

  • lead a game or assist at a booth,
  • donate candy or supplies,
  • invite (and encourage) families in their neighborhood to attend,
  • dress in costume and be a greeter, or
  • help during registration.

Remind volunteers what an honor it is to work for God. As volunteers and leaders, you may be teaching and guiding kids, but you’re also serving the Lord. You have an opportunity to serve God in a special way. You’ll show kids who Jesus really is and encourage them to follow him.

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