Summer vacation is nearly here and that means churches are gearing up for Vacation Bible School.
These are typically free or inexpensive half day, week-long programs at local churches where kids learn about Bible stories and take part in crafts and other activities. Historically these have been morning programs. But many churches are mixing things up, offering the programs on the weekend or evenings.
I've been getting emails about local VBS programs and also reached out to Go Ask Mom Facebook fans this week. Here are the programs that I know about. If you have one to add, please share it in the comments below.
A couple of things to note: The vast majority, if not all, of these programs require pre-registration. Many will fill up. Some include nominal fees. If you'd like your child to attend one, please follow the link to contact the church to learn more about the program and sign up.
- Colossal Coaster VBS at Bethesda Baptist Church in Durham is June 17 to 21 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 pm. Registration will be on the website this week.
- Faith Harvest in Wake Forest will have a program from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., July 22 to July 26, for ages 4 to grade 5.
- Cary Church of Christ's VBS is 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., Aug. 5 to Aug. 8.
- Benson Memorial United Methodist Church holds its program June 24 to June 28.
- Elevation United Methodist Church in Benson will hold its God's Backyard Bible Camp from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., June 23 to June 26. The church's website is being rebuilt, but forms and details should be online this week.
- From 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., Wednesdays, from May 29 to June 26, Hillcrest Baptist Church in Raleigh will hold its Vacation Bible School. Update: Program postponed.
- Shiloh Baptist Church in Garner will offer VBS from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m., June 17 to June 21.
- The Church of the Good Shepherd in downtown Raleigh will hold its camp from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., June 24 to June 27. It's for ages 2 to sixth grade.
- Baptist Grove Baptist Church in Fuquay-Varina will hold its SonWorld Adventure Park Vacation Bible School from 9 a.m. to noon, June 17 to June 21. It's for kids ages 3 (who are potty trained) through 12 (rising sixth graders). Kids will get a CD of the music, color backpacks and snacks and will enjoy carnival games.
- Apex Baptist Church has day and evening programs. The evening program is 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., June 23 to June 28. The day program is 9 a.m. to noon, June 24 to June 27. A family fun night starts at 6:30 p.m., June 28, and is open to all participants. Registration is open now.
- Crossroads Fellowship in Raleigh will hold a free summer adventure camp from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., July 15 to July 19.
- Fuquay-Varina Baptist, Fuquay-Varina, June 9 to June 13.
- Christ Community United Methodist Church, Clayton, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., Aug. 5 to Aug. 9.
- Western Boulevard Presbyterian Church, Raleigh, June 17 to June 21.
- Resurrection Lutheran Church, Cary. 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., June 24 to June 28, for ages 3 to 5. It's 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., June 23 to June 27, for kindergartners to fifth graders.
- Hope Valley Baptist Church, Durham, 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m., July 14 to July 19.
- Soapstone United Methodist Church, Raleigh. Evening VBS is 6 p.m. to 8:15 p.m., June 23 to June 27, for ages kindergarten to fifth grade. Morning VBS is 9:30 a.m. to noon, June 24 to June 27, for ages 3 to kindergarten.
- Longview Baptist Church, Raleigh, 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., July 21 to July 25.
- Aversboro Road Baptist Church, Garner. 6:15 p.m., July 28 to Aug. 1.
- Friendship Baptist Church, Raleigh, 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., July 15 to July 19.
- First United Methodist Church of Cary, 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., July 15 to July 19.
- Grove Park Chapel, Durham, July 14 to July 18.
- Faith Alliance Church, Durham, 6:15 p.m to 8:30 p.m., July 9 to July 13. A closing program and cookout is at 5 p.m., July 14.
- Salem Baptist Church, Apex, offers morning and evening programs. They are 9 a.m. to noon, June 17 to June 21, and 6:15 p.m. to 8:15 p.m., June 16 to June 20.
- Wendell United Methodist Church, Wendell, June 16 to June 20.
- North Raleigh United Methodist Church, Raleigh, June 16 to June 20.
- Calvary Baptist Church, Raleigh, June 23 to June 27.
- Highland United Methodist Church, Raleigh, 9 a.m. to noon, June 17 to June 21.
- Emmanuel Baptist Church, Raleigh. It runs July 26 to July 28. There's a cookout that Friday from 4:30 p.m. to 5:45 p.m. with VBS from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. It's 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., that Saturday and Sunday. Meals provided all three days.
- Calvary Chapel Cary's 2013 Vacation Bible School, Theophilus Jones and The Search For True Treasure, is 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., July 8 to July 12.
- Greenwood Forest Baptist Church in Cary is hosting VBS from Aug 4 to Aug. 8.
- Mount Calvary Baptist Church in Clayton has its VBS from June 17 to June 20 for ages 3 to high school seniors. It's from 6:30 p.m. to 8:45 p.m.. A free fellowship meal for the kids is from 6 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
- St. Francis United Methodist Church in Cary's Everywhere Fun Fair is Aug. 2 to Aug. 4.
Again, contact the individual churches for details and how to register.