Compiled by: Carolyn V. Reynolds, Gainesville District, April 22, 2015
During the 5-Day event, the entire group came together on three occasions, 2 Banquets and an Outing. The initial banquet was always held on the first evening of the Retreat - Monday. Each year a different district was assigned to Host and provide gifts for all ladies in attendance. The Districts introduced a theme that represented the gifts they distributed. Themes from "Christmas in June" to "Heart and Health Care" and "Hawaiian Grass Skirts" were introduced. No one wanted to miss the initial gathering. In many ways it set the tone for the entire retreat.
On the day of the Outing all ladies were instructed to wear the current year's t-shirt. We used just about every color under the sun for t-shirts! The Outing started with an one hour relaxing bus ride to Altamonte Springs, Florida. Once there, the fellowship meal included fried fish, chicken, baked beans, cole slaw, corn on the cob, etc. Photos of each district were taken during the Outing. We also took this time to become more aquatinted with each other by one on one fellowship or by including everyone in various games, activities, and/or slide presentations on different subjects. The ride back to the resort was just as relaxing as the trip over.
Comfort Food is a big part of our heritage and the menu for the final banquet usually consisted of all our favorites.... mac/cheese, greens, chicken, ribs, green beans, etc. This meal was almost always provided by Pastor Jonathan McKnight and members of his congregation from Sanctuary of Praise. After the meal, words of encouragement were given by a designated speaker and/or our Leading Ladies. Fellowship during this banquet is magnified to the highest level! God has given us a special blessing each year, something that we could hold onto until the next retreat.