We held two stations outside and they were huge hits. A donkey riding station and a little lamb petting zoo.
With the Donkey Walk, we wanted to introduce the part of the story where Jesus came into Jerusalem on a donkey. Funny thing, when I wrote the material for the passport, I imagined a wobbly little donkey. The donkey’s we got were beasts. Now they were stubborn and difficult like donkeys can be, but they weren’t little or wobbly.
The passport guided families around this experience but I’m not going to lie. The only thing kids had on their mind at the Donkey Walk was getting on a donkey. It was fun and highly attractional. The only problem we ran into was that some people parked their cars, saw the line forming and decided to jump in line before getting the passport. Initially, we had some volunteers make an issue of it… and some people were bothered. We had to make sure our volunteers understood that it was best to direct people inside before they got in line if at all possible, but it wasn’t the end of the world if a kid did the Donkey Walk before they got the passport. Some of those kids got their arm or hand stamped instead.
Spotless Lamb Petting Corral
This was just your typical run of the mill petting zoo, but we only had lambs. We didn’t make a big deal out of it, just let kids into the corral to pet them. We didn’t want to push the envelope telling all the kids that it was lambs like this that were slaughtered for your sins, but we didn’t avoid the subject either. This mostly all came together in the final station, the Meaning of the Mystery. We did try to tell the story of how Jesus came into the temple where there was chaos as all the merchants were trying to sell lambs for the sacrifice.
These two outdoor venues were the most expensive part of the whole experience, costing a little over $1500 for the four hours. Totally worth it though if you can make it happen.
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