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"The Big Something"

I think it was the Cru ministry at Texas Tech that coined this term. At the beginning of the Fall semester, we want to gather freshmen. I know I quote this statistic every year in some form of prayer request or mailer, but it gets me every time: "80% of freshmen are open to the gospel within the first 2 weeks of classes, that number drops to 20% by week 6." Wow.  Statistics also show that the choices students make in college sets them on the path they will tend to follow for the course of their entire life. The first few weeks in a freshman's life is pivotal.
So, like I said, we try to gather and meet as many freshmen as we can. One of our strategies is "The Big Something." Every year we mix it up a little bit in the details--it always has free food of some sort, and something fun to draw a crowd. We call it "The Big Something" while we plan for it because we don't know what the name should be until it comes together, but it is such a pillar in the first week of school, it gets this title, and as we brain storm it helps us remember that it can't be "A little something" or "A big nothing."
This year we hosted a volleyball tournament and live outdoor concert at Kerr "Beach" at the University of North Texas. Of course it was a free event, and included free snow cones. "The Big Something" served its purpose and gathered apx. 80 new students (pretty incredible considering our ministry had about a dozen students at the start of last fall, and only half that the year before).
God blessed us with fantastic weather. Record-breaking temps of 107, 108 degree days lasted for months, but the night of The Big Something was THE FIRST evening that dipped to 80. It was magnificent! One girl wore a jacket. People still ate snow cones. :)

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