On July 27, 2019 a Little Rock craft beer vendor, “Stone’s Throw Brewing”, held their “Block On Rock 6th Birthday Bash”. From 4:00pm to 10:00pm the two blocks of Rock Street between 7th & 9th in downtown Little Rock was blocked off for the bash. First Lutheran Church, located at 8th & Rock, was right in the middle of the activities. This was also the 6th year that First has participated in the bash.
The weather was terrific and helped to obtain the attendance of over 2,200 people. The “Bash” had 13 food trucks along with 24 vendor and community group canopies set up. Live musical entertainment was provided by “The Big Dam Horns Band”, a seven piece brass group that had the same wonderful sound as the band “Chicago”. As we have done before, two kiddie splash pools were placed on the lawn in front of the church and many attendee’s dogs enjoyed the water for drinking and bathing. A good number of ‘thank yous’ were offered for these tokens of kindness!
In the past 5 years we had opened only the church for visitors to tour the sanctuary. This year was the first time that the adjacent Luther Education Building was opened to welcome visitors to come in to rest, eat their food truck servings and play table games. A local game company, “Magic Games”, staffed the room and helped adults, as well as their children, in playing the provided games. Throughout the evening there were a constant number of visitors. Many of them also walked down the hallway to the church to view the sanctuary.
To help make the attendees aware that First was open for tours, ‘open house’ yard signs were placed out front. The front and inner sanctuary doors were blocked open allowing the altar to be viewed from the street. And with the Western evening bright sunlight beaming through the ‘Ascension Stained Glass Window’ over the altar, the affect was like a heavenly light showing the way for visitors to come in to God’s House. Again, there was a constant number taking the tour with volunteers directing as well as answering any questions. A brochure “What Lutherans Believe” from the Lutheran Hour Ministries was provided for everyone.
All in all, First Lutheran’s participation in this year’s bash proved to be another opportunity to reach out to the community and say “Hello, here we are and welcome”. It was especially pleasing to witness all ages in the crowd attending the bash, especially the many young
adults and children.