By Bonnie Mentel

Twice a year, a group of 30-50 people meet for a scrapbook weekend to benefit the mission trips at Bay Life Church. The first crop of the year will take place Friday, April 9 from 6:30-11 p.m., and Saturday, April 10 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at Bay Life Church.

“We’ve been doing this event for eight years and we contribute to missions trips which go everywhere from Africa to South America,” Database Coordinator and Crop Organizer Patty Fuller explained.

She said that the event’s registration fee supports missions while also contributing to kid’s camps and youth department events.

There are several mission trips offered throughout the year for both adults and youth.

“The adult trips generally focus on working with orphans and education. One of the adult mission trips goes to Africa to work with pastors to give them biblical and pastoral teaching. Then they work with an orphanage there and an orphanage in Honduras,” she said. “The student trips encourage kids to take on leadership roles and teaches them how to serve others, and they work often in disadvantaged areas of towns.”

The church youth minister domestically through Vacation Bible Schools, or help with hands-on projects such as construction work for a needy family in the area. They also paint houses, rebuild basketball courts, and help churches in older areas of towns that need reconstruction work, but don’t have the resources for repairs.

The Scrapbooking for Missions event typically raises between $1,200 to $3,000 per weekend, depending on attendance. They’re expecting to sell out, which means that $3,000 will be raised for missions.

Attendees should bring their own scrapbook supplies to the church. Fuller says that the registration fee is tax deductible, and it includes a continental breakfast, home cooked lunch, drinks and snacks all day, plus scrapbook/crop space, swap table, goody bags and door prizes. There will also be “Make and Take” stations (for a nominal fee), a silent auction (including retired Stampin’ Up! products), and raffle baskets valued between $150 and $300.

“On Friday night, they can come for dinner, an ice cream sundae bar and their crop space for $25 until April 3. After that, it goes to $30. Or, they can do Saturday, which is when we do the silent auction, raffle baskets, and we do ‘Make and Takes,’ in which all the demonstrators of various companies come in and teach a specific project. They can spend 30-45 minutes making a specific project that the demonstrator has provided all the materials for; that’s only on Saturday. It’s $30 if you register early, or $35 if you register late. Or, you can do the bundle which is Friday and Saturday for $45 until April 3, and $55 after,” Fuller said.

Sylvia Cuillo from Photos Organized will also be at the event on Saturday to scan photos onto CDs or thumb drives. She will scan stacks of 100 photos for a $5 donation to missions. Individuals interested in this service will need to bring their photos and a thumb drive.

Participants should register online at Note that a space is not reserved until it is paid in full. For further questions, email or call Communications Coordinator Johnna Gelfenstein at 661-3696 ext. 232. Bay Life Church is located at 1017 Kingsway Rd. in Brandon.

“It’s the best thing going. It’s the best scrapbook event in town. We have a home-cooked lunch and a continental breakfast on Saturday. We provide drinks and snacks all day,” Fuller said. “And chocolate.”

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