I go to the Orange Conference every year but there are some unique differences about the Orange Tour that I enjoy. Here are 5 things I look forward to every year at Orange Tour and below, I'll include notes from previous orange tours. 

Attending With Volunteers

Occasionally, we'll have volunteers attend the Orange Conference with us. The Orange Tour, however, is just the opposite. We'll take 10-20+ volunteers each year because it's closer, more affordable, and just one day. I love going with a whole team of volunteers, many for the first time, to experience the Orange Tour together.

Different Breakouts

Some breakouts at the Orange Tour are the same as what was offered at the conference, but many of them are different. In addition, you can only attend so many breakouts at the conference, so I like the option of attending breakouts at Tour that are new to me.

Connecting with Local Friends

We have essentially gone to two tour locations since it launched, so regardless of which one we go to, we have friends we can connect with when we attend. Many of the same churches host or attend each year, so it's a fun time to reconnect and catch up on life and ministry.

Better Access

Because Orange Tour is much smaller, our team gets to connect with speakers more than they ever would at the conference. This gives them an opportunity to ask questions, dig deeper into some topics, or just strike up a relationship that will serve them well down the road.

Parent Cue Live

Parent Cue Live is a newer addition to the Orange Tour and I have really enjoyed it. If your church is close to a tour location, it can be a great invite for parents. It's fun, helpful, and very affordable for parents.


Orange Tour 2020


Two unique experiences offered for the first time this fall!


A day of online training for your staff and volunteers.


An in-person gathering for key leaders on your family ministry team.


A day of online training for your staff and volunteers.

At Orange Tour Digital you can:

  • Get on the same page as a team.
  • Discover practical training to improve as a leader and volunteer.
  • Learn more about the unique developmental needs of kids and teenagers.
  • Reimagine how to engage families at home and at church.

Four opportunities to participate on your own schedule:

This one-day live-streamed event will repeat (LIVE) on four separate dates to make it easy for everyone on your team to participate. Experience it all on one-day or split it up according to your availability.

Saturday, October 17, 2020

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Thursday, October 22, 2020

Saturday, October 24, 2020


An in-person gathering for key leaders in your family ministry team.


At Orange Tour Limited you’ll get:

  • Time to network with like-minded leaders to see how concepts are applied to different contexts.
  • Guided experiences to re-imagine how you connect the message of hope to kids at every phase.
  • Practical insights to help your team navigate the mental health crisis of a generation.
  • Experienced ministry leaders who've committed to passing on their wisdom and learnings to a new generation of leaders.
  • Fun and connection with your family ministry team.

Click here to learn more about this year's Orange Tour!

Orange Tour 2020 Notes

This fall, Orange pivoted again off of the regular Orange Tour experience to offer two online events instead – Kid's Ministry Exchange (KMX) and Youth Ministry Exchange (YMX). The theme of the events was Here to Play, and I think they're right when they said “We think there’s a generation watching and waiting to see if we are really . . . here to play.”

Here are some of my favorite quotes from KMX & YMX:

Kids Ministry Exchange

Jesus didn’t just speak it; He lived it. Instead of building another program, it’s time to love people. The golden rule is self-centered, but Jesus’ rule is others-centered. So how is your righteousness surpassing that of the Pharisees? – @djstrickland

We have a responsibility to our Creator who has created all of us in His image…we've got to pause and not be afraid to deal with the tough stuff. – @vawardwow

“The church has to be the one on the frontlines, leading a world to love.” – @SamCollier

“If you take away a kid's voice, if you take away their role, you take away their agency and you steal their power ” – @lisefras

David Jameson said  “we can only receive what we give, we can only withdraw what we deposit. So deposit trust! Boom!

“You are salt and you are valuable… not just to the Kingdom, you are valuable to the King.” – @GeraldFadayomi

“I'm here to play so I can show someone how to play. I want the kids who grow up in my ministry to know how to participate, know how to demonstrate, how to advocate, how to celebrate, how to discover their own faith.” – @lisefras

Youth Ministry Exchange

Right now in the church if we're waiting for things to get back to normal, “we're waiting for a world that no longer exists.” – @josaxton

“How can you serve that world if you don't know that world?” – @josaxton

“ASK, SEEK, KNOCK” instead of choosing to take the posture of “KNOW, ASSUME, DEFEND”

“The pandemic didn’t change as much as we think it did. It just gave us the opportunity to pay closer attention to the change already happening around us.”


Next Steps to Consider

Did you attend? What were some of your takeaways?

Orange Tour 2016

Last week, our family ministry staff, along with about 10 volunteers, attended the Orange Tour stop in Lancaster, PA. We attend the Tour every year and it was a great experience as always. Unlike past years, we went north to Lancaster instead of south to D.C. and the traffic was way better.

Here are some key quotes, along with actions steps I would suggest, coming out of the 2016 Orange Tour.

“This week matters: if it’s repeated.” – Reggie Joiner

Action Step: If you currently don't have weekly volunteers in your ministry, create a plan to get there. It's hard to repeat what matters if you have different people with kids/students each week. Don't expect to do it in one day, but draw up a plan to transition from monthly or bi-weekly to weekly.

“Kids matter: more than adults.” – Reggie Joiner

Action Step: Analyze your budget towards kids and students. I'm completely biased, obviously, but if you divided up your church staff's hours into 3-5 core segments, with children's and student ministry being a segment, it should get the most hours. More than worship. More than groups. More than operations. More. It should get more budget as well (okay, minus facilities).

“Prioritize young people everywhere.” – Mike Park (Kara Powell at some stops)

Action Step: By the new book Growing Young from Fuller. Take the assessment and apply the learnings to your church. Fuller offers some additional resources along with the book and the assessment that are also helpful.

“Church should never be boring” – Reggie Joiner

Action Step: Evaluate your environments weekly and ask the question, was it fun? Yes, our ultimate goal is to make disciples. However, there won't be many kids and students to make disciples of if their experience is boring, dull and irrelevant.

“Every parent will do something more.” – Reggie Joiner

Action Step: Think of something this week you can challenge parents to do that is something more. Not 10 things more. Not a 6-month project. One thing. What is it? How will you communicate it to them? How will you help them?

“The shortest distance between your church and the parent is a small group leader” – Reggie Joiner

Action Step: Equip small group leaders with the contact information for the parents of their few and encourage them to reach out. If it's the first contact, I think the best option is to write a sample email for the leader, have the leader personalize it and send it to every parent. Every partnership begins with someone reaching out to open a dialogue.

Orange Tour 2015

Our team attended the Orange Tour last Friday, as we do every year. I was able to be part of the Lead Small event the night before, which also was a lot of fun. Here are 10 learnings from this year's Orange Tour.

10 Learnings from the Orange Tour

“When you see how much time you have left you get serious about the time you have now.”

“Every kid is made in the image of God.”

“Wise leaders shape their culture knowing it shapes everyone else.”

“The scope of your influence is determined by the success of your leaders.”

“High capacity leaders are attracted to high levels of challenge.”

“Teach like love matters.”

“For authenticates forgiveness.”

“Spend time with your best leaders.”

“Teenagers don’t need you any less, they just need you in a different way.”

“Churches that appeal to millennials are transparent, collaborative, diverse, missional, and authentic.”