It is Sunday night after the EXPO and I am so gratified at how things turned out this year! Once again Gophers showed up, ministry leaders showed up, and the SGT family showed up!
So many people have to come together to make the EXPO happen. My Administrative Assistant, Anna Choy, starts it off in May, methodically getting things in order. That process continues even until the day after the EXPO. We try to “wake up” the “EXPO brain” around that time too, making sure everyone knows the date of the event.
But really, August is ground zero for the EXPO. Calls to Tim and Rebekah Hoppe, David Rivera, and Jason Newell are important at that time so we can think about tweaking the set-up, recruiting Gophers, and planning the food menu. We start lining up the Variety Show in August as well. By this time most all of the ministry leaders have checked in, considered their booths, Blue Light Special ideas, etc.; special guests are usually secured by that time.
August is also time for the big blue EXPO banner in the main lobby which draws attention to sign-ups and the EXPO itself. By the end of the month the EXPO stencil is on the front and side entrance sidewalks
Set-up day—the day before the EXPO—is key! Without a good set-up plan and Gophers to execute the plan, there would not be an EXPO. Tim’s plan, Anna’s planning, and David’s availability make this possible!
Set-up-day evening is for ministry leaders! It’s when they set-up and get their exhibits ready (although this year several pushed it to Sunday morning! Hint hint!)
This year there were new ideas, new approaches (like the Home Missions Doll House, a different set-up and approach by The Center and also SGT Kids). There was also new variety—like Tony Carrozzo’s Exotic Snakes and Pastor Rich’s Missions Gadget Table. We also added Naomi Pierro’s show, a Mr. Softee truck, and the SGT Welcome App. And we began acclimating Maureen Arasmo to the Variety Show Emcee role.
I love it when the first service releases and the Exhibit area floods with the SGT family! From that point it’s busy for the rest of the day. The floor gets energized again when the second service lets out. For me, though, EXPO is constant trips between the office and the Exhibit floor, announcements in two services, all the while taking in the spectacle of the EXPO; the busy-ness of it. Talking to our people, checking in with various exhibits, appreciating our special guests, knowing all the time that I have to get focused on the Variety Show. (Among other things, I feel pressure because I try to open the show with comedy but I don’t really announce that I’m going to do stand-up comedy: it’s too much pressure!) Naomi’s show was great today and so was the Variety Show.
In the end, people come together and what we experience is the Smithtown Gospel Tabernacle at its best. No church is perfect. But you would be hard pressed to find a church with people who care more than the people involved in the ministries of SGT!
Thanks to all who played any part of this year’s EXPO! See you next year on September 16! (Save the date!)
Okay, I’m being silly, but it is true that the are lots of great freebies at the EXPO! Where can you grab hold of the goodies?
First: Check the ministry tables. There are usually plenty of fun and useful freebies to go around.
Second: Keep your eyes and ears peeled for the EXPO Blue Light Specials! There aren’t many but you just might be one of the winners!
Third: At the EXPO Variety Show we’re gonna play a game called “Gift or Gag.” There will be some good gifts and some “gag” gifts. If you don’t know what a gag gift is, come and find out!
The EXPO began when Pastor Zarlengo asked me to create a way for you (SGT family) to learn more about all the ministries available at SGT. This would meet the double need of helping people get involved (which brings about relational connection as well as opportunities to serve others), but it would also help people discover ministries that could help them. As a result, God gave us the EXPO! The EXPO definitely meets these needs, but, along the way, we have discovered that it meets so many others as well.
I remember, at our first EXPO (this year is our fourth), there were actually ministry leaders who met each other for the first time! It brought about a great opportunity for ministry leaders to fellowship together and even coordinate ministry together.
Last year, I met a brand new family with children spanning several age groups who used the EXPO to take the opportunity to seek out the various ministries relevant to their family! That’s what the EXPO is all about!
The EXPO also gives us a chance as a family to eat together, play together, laugh and be entertained together. Our youth ministry, The Center, and our children’s ministry, SGT Kids, always have great activities. The EXPO Variety Show is always a blast—this year we have an added show featuring Naomi Pierro and friends. And who doesn’t like a photo booth?
Every year I am so proud of our ministry leaders and their teams! For me, the EXPO is an opportunity for those of us who work behind the scenes to find some way to serve these leaders and honor them for all the energy they put into serving others all year.
Come to the EXPO this year and participate in as many things as you can. Eat the food, attend the shows, and go by the tables and be amazed (as I am) at the wide variety of ministries we have at SGT!
Today’s SGT Family EXPO post is a screen capture video tutorial on how to navigate the SGT Welcome App for the EXPO this weekend!
Hopefully you know by now that the EXPO is happening next Sunday, September 17. The purpose of the EXPO is to make you aware of ministries which you can be involved in, and ministries which can minister to you. Along the way, however, it also serves the purpose to bring us all together around some good food, fun, and family entertainment.
Thank you SGT family for all that you do to make all of these ministries possible!
See you at the EXPO!