I am sure that when my TSF years are all said and done, some of the warmest memories I will have will be of the annual youth spaghetti dinner and talent show (held Friday night). This was originally the idea of my 2nd oldest son Ben – who turned 28 a few days ago. Back when he was at Williamsport High School, he was in the famous Sophisti-‘Cats Show Choir, and they did numerous spaghetti dinner fundraisers. That first year, Ben pulled together a bunch of the teens and put together a choir number that was performed in a “Black church” style of soul – the song “Oh Happy Day” – as in Sister Act. He borrowed a collection of pure white choir robes from the high school, and it was great.
Of course, along the way, the boys of the youth group have put together the annual Male Interpretive Dance Team. This is a spoof that the guys originally did because the girls, many years ago, had a serious interpretive dance team. The girls were really good, but the boys of course did a lot of running into each other, etc. This is one of those things that is sorta like when your infant child does something that is not exactly a good thing, but it was really funny and so you laughed – which encouraged the child to do it even more! Well, the “Male Interp” thing has grown to have a monstrous life of its own. It is now the highlight and finale song of the program. And now also, it has become a tradition for there to be an introductory video. Some of these have been incredibly funny. A couple of years ago, one of them had me laughing about as uncontrollably as anything I’ve ever seen!
These events are fundraisers for our annual youth summer trip: on even-numbered years to the denominational National Youth Conference, and on odd-numbered years to a missions project trip. This year there is a conference to be held in New Orleans. Previous conferences have been at Georgia Tech, Purdue, Colorado State, and in the civic centers of Columbus and Salt Lake City. About 5,000-6,000 youth from around the country attend these life-changing events.
Here are a few pictures from what was truly a variety show: