FYI: For Your Info

“FYI: For Your Info,” New Era, Feb. 1992, 40–43

For Your Info

Looking for midweek activities that are more exciting than your basic basketball or bowling, skating or scavenger hunt? Put your heads together and come up with more unique ideas for Mutual. Here’s a whole year’s worth of suggestions:

Midweek Mutual

  • Attend the dress rehearsals of your local ballet, opera, or theater. Many times tickets are extremely low priced, or even free. Call to find out.

  • Have ethnic cooking classes. Get someone who’s a native of another country or a returned missionary to come and show you how to whip up fabulous foreign meals.

  • Attend a city council meeting to see how the local government works.

  • Have career exploration nights. Arrange to visit a business that stays open in the evenings (like a newspaper, television or radio station, supermarket, etc.), and find out what it’s like to work there.

  • Take a tour of your local library—find out how you can get the most out of it. Did you know most libraries let you check out CDs and videos?

  • Find out what your local shelters need and make items for them—things like hygiene kits, toys, and quilts.

  • Have a Mormonad brainstorming contest and make Mormonad posters. Send us your best—we need them! (And we’ll pay you for them.)

  • Let the Laurels and priests do a “senior year” workshop for the younger youth in your program.

  • Have a creative pizza party. Roll out biscuit dough for crusts, and see who can come up with the most unusual or attractive toppings.

  • Visit your local television station and watch them do a news broadcast. (You’ll have to arrange in advance for this one.)

  • Have a family history night where you learn how to do genealogy, extract records, etc.

  • Sponsor a baby-sitting clinic and make baby-sitting kits.

  • Have a letter-writing night when everyone pens a few encouraging words to the missionaries and military service people from your ward.

  • Have a letter-writing night when everyone writes something positive to a Congressman, mayor, bishop, or parent.

  • Invite someone qualified to give you a clinic in CPR.

  • Host a missionary activity when everyone teams up with either a stake or full-time missionary.

  • Put on a special, missionary-oriented activity to which missionaries can bring their investigators. (These nights are very big in the Dominican Republic.)

  • Offer to tend for the sisters with children who want to attend Relief Society homemaking night, and plan some kind of fun, group activity for the children.

  • Have a kite-flying fest.

  • Invite someone who knows sign language for the deaf to come teach you a few things about it.

  • Plan a fireside for the rest of the ward or stake about an important topic like ecology, scripture study, etc.

  • Invade the bishop’s house and do all sorts of wonderful things for him like cooking, cleaning, yard work, and anything else you can think of. Don’t forget to let his wife know you’re coming.

  • Have everyone bring their favorite recipes and make a Mutual cookbook.

  • Have a New Era Bowl.

  • Ask someone to teach you to can or bottle fruits and vegetables.

  • Go caroling to people who need a little holiday cheer. And don’t wait for Christmas. You can carol on Valentine’s Day, Easter, Halloween, and other times.

  • Offer to redo, clean up, and fix the dolls and toys from your local thrift shop.

  • Have a manicure workshop one week; then go to a retirement home the next week and offer your newfound skills to the residents.

  • Make a beautiful quilt and donate it to a charity to be sold at auction.

  • Have a competition between the Young Men and Young Women—each class makes a quilt; then you vote on the most creative or beautiful, and donate them to charity.

  • Go to a hospital and read stories to the elderly or to children.

  • Throw a finger painting party.

  • Volunteer to help clean pens and walk the pets at the local animal shelter.

  • Make a video of a Book of Mormon story to show to the Primary kids.

  • Ask an aerobics instructor to come and conduct a session.

  • Ask the missionaries in your area, both elders and sisters, to conduct a mission prep workshop.

  • Stuff envelopes for a charity organization or a nonprofit group.

  • Have a self-defense seminar.

  • Have a bowling night, but make sure everyone brings a younger sibling or ward member.

  • Go on a tour of the local university or college to see what facilities you can be taking advantage of right now.

  • Volunteer to prepare and serve dinner at the local homeless shelter.

  • Ask foreign exchange students in your school to come talk about their countries.

  • Get involved in your local Adopt-a-Highway program.

  • Talk to city authorities to have them help you set up a time when you can paint over the graffiti in your area.

  • Get an inexpensive copy of the Book of Mormon, and give everyone ten or so pages to read. That way, together you can read the entire Book of Mormon in one night. Discuss what you read.

  • Learn how to dip chocolates.

  • Form a dating panel. Have girls tell boys what they like, what bothers them, etc., and have boys do the same thing.

  • Do a family home evening clinic where everyone shares one of their favorite activities or lessons and everyone gets ideas and instructions for things that could work in their own families.

  • Invite someone to speak on how to look for and get a job.

  • Play “Scriptionary,” which is like “Pictionary,” but you draw something to represent a scripture rather than a word.

  • Have a journal-writing workshop. Let everyone share what works for them; then challenge each other to write faithfully for the next couple of weeks. It could be a Young Men versus Young Women competition.

  • Have a music night when everyone learns to lead music. Then make an “orchestra” of your own using your ingenuity to create instruments out of common household items brought from home.

Have a Heart

One thing you can say for the Laurels in the Rockford First Ward, Rockford Illinois Stake, is that they have heart. And they give it away. Their 1991 service project had them sewing valentine outfits for premature babies in a local hospital.

The outfits included nightgowns with red hearts, red knit socks, hats, and mittens. After Valentine’s Day, they continued to make outfits for premature babies in other hospitals in the area.

Activity with a Twist

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be disabled? The youth of the Davenport Iowa Stake found out at their last youth conference. They had speakers come to educate them about various types of disabilities and the extra faith they require; then they experienced some disabilities firsthand.

They played wheelchair basketball, volleyball with glasses that severely inhibited their vision, and “Beep ball,” which is like blind-folded baseball played with a ball and bases that give off sound.

Of course the conference also featured a dance, a testimony meeting, meals, and other games, but the understanding they gained of different disabilities left the biggest impression. In fact, 12 participants were so impressed they decided to participate in a local disabled youth camp program.

Serving at Super Saturday

Need an idea for a Super Saturday activity? How about trying what the seminary students in the Thatcher Arizona Stake did? They had notified stake members that they would be coming. Then they spent the morning collecting donations of food and clothing for the homeless and needy.

All in all, the 300 young people who participated collected, sorted, and delivered several tons of usable clothing and bedding, and a ton and a half of food—enough to provide 4,000 meals.

“It made us feel so good inside to know we were doing something to help so many people!” said one of the participants. “It was really neat to see such well-organized chaos,” added another.

Book of Mormon Fest

It isn’t always easy to reach a Book of Mormon reading goal, so the young women of the Hemet Third Ward, Hemet California Stake, set up a study buddy program where each person drew the name of partner to help encourage each other to read their two pages a day.

At the end of the nine-month program, more than half of the girls and leaders finished the entire book, and it was time for a celebration. They held a “Book of Mormon Fest,” with games like “Get the Gadiantons,” where the girls threw darts at balloons labeled with the names of Book of Mormon bad guys, and “The Mock Walk,” where the girls had to walk a beam representing the straight and narrow path while being mocked with laughter.

What a Night

The Young Men, Young Women, and youth leaders of the Rigby Second Ward, Rigby East Idaho Stake, managed to read the entire Book of Mormon in 45 minutes during an activity night!

Well, they did divide it up a bit. Each one took the responsibility for reading several chapters. Everyone took a colored leaf with a reading assignment on it, and on the back they wrote what they had learned from it. The leaves were then put together to make a tree representing the one in Lehi’s dream.

Comments included things like “God will show you miracles after you show him your faith” and “I learned the righteous are blessed and helped by the Lord.”

The Maine Missionary Thing

If these missionaries look a little younger than usual, it’s because they are, but 26 young people in the Rockland Ward, Bangor Maine Stake, were not too young to serve as unofficial “missionaries” for a week. They wore name tags and gave out 41 copies of the Book of Mormon. The full-time missionaries in the area were kept mega-busy with all the referrals that resulted.

Photography by Phil Shurtleff

Iowa youth experienced for themselves what it’s like to be disabled, playing basketball and other sports as handicapped people would.

Arizonans had tons of fun as they collected tons of food and clothing for the homeless.

Hemet, California girls ate things like “Teancum Tacos” and “Laman Meringue Pie” at their Book of Mormon bash.

Maine’s missionaries got a lot of help when the youth dedicated a week to sharing the gospel.