Hannah Rueber

It seems acceptable to think that TeenStreet (TS) begins on Arrival Day. That’s when hundreds of teens from a variety of countries flood the campus and the overall energy level escalates to near hysteria. While TS may ‘kick off’ on Arrival Day, it truly begins long before that. All during the week prior to the teens’ arrival, Service Team members are making the TS site come to life.

From boundary fences to the massive refrigeration units in the dining hall, from the rigging above the stage to the pink tape marking the wires on the floor in the communications office, there are thousands of individual pieces that go into making TS what it is. One large piece of the TS puzzle is the set up production of the Main Hall.

“It’s amazing to come here and learn all the skills that other people can teach you,” George (Canada) said amid the busyness of setting up Main Hall. “It’s humbling because you’re learning some new skills. It’s incredible to watch it all come together so quickly. It’s also that anticipation of the teens arriving on Saturday.”

“I like being at Setup week because you get to know lots of new people,” Mattias (Germany) shared. “[By the time TS officially starts] you already know your way around. On Arrival Day, most people are all ‘oh, where do I go?’, but [those of us here for Setup Week] already know the site. This is my 7th year working on the Service Team, and I still like it.”

Aaron (International home office representative), simply said, “Where to begin…”

No matter when they arrive, each person has their moment when TS becomes a reality.

For George “it’s unloading the trucks and seeing all the sheer volume of equipment that needs to be set up. We unload the trucks in an hour, but it takes a couple days to set it all up. That’s kind of the opening ceremonies [for our team], unloading trucks. It’s a big build-up because of all the travel to get here.”

“Sleeping in a tent with hundreds of people” Mattias said. “Or the country video opening night… I get goosebumps during that. It’s so awesome.”

Aaron: “I think it’s when you walk through the gate for the first time. For a second, you don’t realise you’re there. Once you walk in, you see people setting things up and realise ‘this is how people prepare for an event that lots of people come to enjoy and get closer to God.’ I like seeing how everything is placed out and set up,” he continued. “It’s seeing how everything is put together and how it’s done. Lots of people arrive when everything is ready, and they don’t see the long process. It’s interesting to see how much help they need…the Service Team around TeenStreet.”

Ester (Netherlands, security team) shared that “There are all these little things that come back/connect every year: getting the first dinner, walking the site, etc. It’s all the small things come together.”

What is something you are looking forward to?

George: “…the first Throne Room. For one thing, it’s a huge sigh of relief for us to know that everything is working properly. Secondly, you can really just relax and worship. Being from North America, we forget that God is growing His church in Europe too. It’s nice to be reminded that we’re not alone on our island.”

Ester: “Hanging out with the friends that you met before. When you’re on the Service Team, you see TS from a different perspective, so that is fun. As a teen, everything is organised for you and you just have to follow the programme. Then Service Team, you see a lot of other things too.”

The Service Team is prepared. The stage is set. Get ready to be ‘Inspired’ by our God.