Dad Fest 2015…An Absolutely Incredible Moment for Thrive Church!

DAD FEST 2015 Rocked! dad fest

I can’t believe that Dad Fest was 5 days ago! We planned and prepared and prayed for months and months and it’s already over! Even though everything didn’t go according to plan, it was still one of our BEST days as a Church and it was just incredible!

Why did it rock?

Because God used it to reach people who normally would never step foot into a church! Because there were multiple stories of men who told their wives they would come back to this church. Because families were introduced to Jesus.

What was DAD FEST you ask?

Dad Fest was a special day to honor dads and to give our Church an incredible opportunity to make it as easy as possible to invite and bring friends and family to check out Thrive Church! Last year we hosted it on the actual Father’s Day, but since we live in a college town, there are a ton of Thrivers who travel home to see their dads…so, we did it a week early.

What did we do at DAD FEST?

We planned to have (cool cars, police vehicles, giant inflatables, a live band, 40 ft climbing wall, a football skills area, fun archery, face painting and water balloons) in the parking lot, but because of rain we had to cancel it.

Even though that happened, it was still an absolutely STELLAR morning for Thrive Church!

During our experience, I challenged Dad’s to just not pass on DNA to their kids, but pass on what matters most. And, we looked at the example of Jesus in Mark 10. Our band was awesome and lead us in some great worship. We brought a couple of dad’s up and did a fun DAD vs DAD competition.

AND…we had a ton of food! No joke, we had a special DAD TENT and DAD reserved area where there was a ton of food covered in bacon (thanks to an amazing volunteer) and DADS and MEN received a chilled bottle of root beer with a DAD FEST cozi. It was just awesome!

Plus in the lobby of the movie theater we rent and in the tents after the experience, we had a ton of free food and drinks. And we had a picture wall for Dad’s to get a picture with their kids.

It was just a lot of fun and a ton of impact! 

And, actually, in spite of the rain, people still showed up! On a typical Sunday morning at Thrive, we have around 400 people. At Dad Fest 2015 we had 602. Its just nuts that we had a 136% increase over last years Dad Fest. And, all that for an 88 week old church! God is good!


We do all of this because we want to passionately help people find and follow Jesus! And, we’ll do anything short of sin to reach IMG_5745people for Jesus! And, we’re willing to do things that no one is doing to reach people that no one else is reaching.

I am so incredibly thankful to everyone who prayed for Dad Fest. Who served. Who gave financially. Who invited and brought friends and family. And, those who showed up!

It was a major day for the history of Thrive Church and I already can’t wait till years!

Put down June 12th!!

We’re not even close to being done! There are 80,000 people in Central MI who don’t ‘have a Church home and we won’t stop or slow down!

I can’t wait till we add our Thrive location on the campus of Central Michigan University. And then a campus in Midland, Alma and Big Rapids!

Honored to be a part of this Church and I know the best is yet to come!


Oh…in case you want to see more about Dad Fest, check out these links:

Watch the experience.

Look at the pictures.

Email to get a copy of our Stratetic Plan.

You’re invited to DAD FEST this Sunday at Thrive!

What are you doing this Sunday? Yup, this Sunday, June 14th at either 9 or 1015am? dad fest

You’re invited to Dad Fest! 

Dad Fest is a time to celebrate Dad’s! Yes, Father’s Day isn’t for another week. But, we’re going to celebrate Dad’s a little bit early at Thrive on June 14th with a giant party!

So, here’s how it works. Head to Thrive Church on Sunday morning for either of our morning experiences (9 or 1015). I would get there about 20 minutes early. When you get there, you’ll walk into the lobby and you can grab some free Bigby’s coffee and donut holes from Tim Horton’s and then if you have kids, get them checked in at the Thrive Kidz check in area. From there, you’ll head down the Thrive Kidz hallway and get your kids in the right rooms.

Then, head back down the hallway to theater one and get ready! We’ll be in there for about 60 minutes. A band will play, people will sing, we’ll watch a funny video, there will be a message from God’s word and then we’ll pray.

That’s when Dad Fest will begin! Everyone will head out of theater one and once you’re outside…have fun! Kick back! Hang out! Enjoy!

Dad’s can head to the DAD TENT for a special gift! 

Everyone else can enjoy…

  • A 40 ft climbing wall (Thanks Eagle Village)
  • A Football Skills area for Dad’s (and moms) and their kids (Thanks again to Eagle Village)
  • Giant Inflatables
  • Free Food
  • Water Balloons
  • A Dunk Tank
  • Cool Cars to look at!!
  • A live band
  • And some other fun!!

So, bring everyone you know! Bring your dad, your uncle, your grandpa, your neighbors, your family and your friends!

Can’t wait to see you on Sunday at Thrive Church for Dad Fest!! 


Do you want your Man Card? Check out Thrive Church this morning…

Today we start a brand new series at Thrive called…Man Card! Yes, we are going right to the heart of what makes a man a man! And, in case you’re wondering, we’re going to have a little fun with this! That’s probably not a shocker, though! But, fun is a part of our DNA at Thrive.

But, we’re going to talk about what God says make a man a man and we will even be passing out Man Cards during this series.

Actually, don’t miss Dad Fest next week! That’s when the Man Card’s will be passed out!

So, grab your man, your dad, your uncle or your grandpa and all the dudes you know and get them to Thrive today.

Remind them to dress in whatever their comfortable in and be a few minutes early!

You DO NOT want to miss the opening song this morning! See you soon!

man card

DAD FEST is COMING to Thrive Church and we need your help!

DAD FEST is coming to Thrive Church! Actually…it’s almost here!

It’s on Sunday June 14th and it’s after each Sunday morning experience. There is a special DAD TENT (Yes, there is some SUPER COOL STUFF in the DAD TENT), Inflatables for kids and students, a Giant Football Competition area (Thanks to Eagle Village and Victims to Victors), Dunk Tank, a Live Band, FREE FOOD, Cool Cars and a ton of other fun!


Here are photo’s from last year’s Dad Fest!!! This year, we’re taking it to a whole new level! Why? Why are we doing this? Investing the time, energy and finances into this event?

Here’s why…to get more men to be a part of Church. To give men a chance to fall in love with Jesus. To encourage Dad’s to be the spiritual leaders in their house holds.

And, to reach as many people as possible!! Actually, I’m praying that this will be our largest attended Sunday to date!

How you can be a part of Dad Fest 2015

1. Pray for Dad Fest! Pray that God would send men! Men that would never step foot into a Church! Men who desperately need Jesus. Pray that men, women and children would respond to the Gospel. Pray that the weather would be amazing! Pray that our parking lot would be stuffed! Pray that the extra stuff we’re looking for would be donated.

2. Be at Dad FEST! Be there. Make it a priority!

3. Serve at Dad FEST! We need a completely other team to set up, run and tear down DAD FEST. If you can help, email

4. Invite and Bring EVERYONE you know! This Sunday you will be given little invite cards, pass them out. On Wednesday, June 11th at noon, be a part of the DAD FEST Facebook flash mob! Message people. Call them. Invite them. Email them.

5. Donate. Thrive is only 84 weeks old and hosting events like these cost a lot of money. It’s well worth it because we’re able to reach exponentially more people than a normal Sunday, but help donating stuff would be awesome. Here’s what we need:

  • Cans of Pop.
  • Cases of Water.
  • Bags of little chips.
  • Paper products (Plates, cups, napkins).
  • Sponsor an Inflatable. It’s about 300 per inflatable and we would like to have 3.

If you can help, email

It’s coming! Get ready!!

dad fest