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Seasonal Outreach Activities


Christmas Family Adoption

In December of every year individuals and groups in the church are encouraged to adopt a family through the Topeka Christmas Bureau to provide presents and support. Folks within the church coordinate the process of adoption and the delivery of the gifts.

Annual Pancake Feed and Basket Sale/Country Store. During February, the United Methodist Men host a pancake feed at modest prices and the United Methodist Women offer special baskets and other items they have made for sale. Proceeds go to the missional activities of both those organizations. Many people volunteer to help with these fun times.


Easter Saturday

This popular event is held every year on the front lawn of the church often on the Saturday before Easter. There is food, games and, of course, an Easter egg hunt for the kids. We often give away food by drawing to some of the families who register with us that day.


The Big Splash

In June, we celebrate the end of school and beginning of summer with a community event on the front lawn of the church. Food, games, and community information are shared with anyone who wants to come, free of charge. During the last half hour of the event, the action moves to the church's back lot where a Topeka Fire Department truck hoses down kids and adults.

Vacation Bible School

Usually in June, this yearly event is a time for children to come to the church to learn more about God's love in a relaxed, fun way. It is open to all children in the community. Food is always provided, along with music and lots of interesting activities and Bible study. VBS meets for a couple of hours in the evening because that is when we can attract the most adult volunteers to help with it. It is not unusual for us to have 60 to 80 kids join us for this week long event.

Music and Theater Camp

For the past three years, the church has sponsored a free music and theater camp for older elementary students and youth in the 7th and 8th grades. The younger kids meet in the morning with older kids staying throughout the day. Participation is limited to 25 kids. Each year, the students learn a musical production and present it on the last evening of the camp. in 2012, about 100 people came to see that production. Dates have varied for this event over the years, so check with the church office. We hope to sponsor it again this year or something similar to it.

Topeka Center for Peace and Justice Peace Camp

For the past two years, the church has hosted this community wide camp for elementary school aged kids sponsored by the Topeka Center for Peace and Justice. The camp meets in the morning and includes a lunch for the kids. Through a variety of methods students are invited to consider peaceful ways of dealing with conflict and the challenges of life.

Annual Cookout
September sees our men grilling burgers, brats or hot dogs for modest prices. A classic car show operates on the front lawn as people enjoy great food in back. Proceeds go to the mission work of the United Methodist Men.
Fall Festival
At the end of October on the Saturday or Sunday before Halloween, we host a fall festival and trunk or treat event in our parking lot behind the church. We have lots of activities for kids, some good food and plenty of folks ready to greet the trick or treaters. This is an event free for the community.
Bishop's Round-up for Hunger
In mid-November Highland Park UMC participates in a big eastern Kansas United Methodist event that collects food and other personal items for distribution to the needy. Adults and youth from our church help collect things, some of which they take to the collection site in Lawrence and some of which stay here for our local food pantry. People who go to Lawrence help to load and unload trucks so that all things collected can be sent out the same day.Topeka CROP 

Hunger Walk

Every year, members of Highland Park UMC participate in the Topeka CROP Hunger Walk . That event raises several thousand dollars, much of which is given to Topeka agencies who feed the hungry. In some years, Highland Park UMC has raised more money than anyone else in the Topeka Region's CROP Walk.

The I Care Food Pantry, located in our church, receives funds from the Topeka CROP Hunger walk.