Inspire Workshop Registration Opens
This week, workshop registration opened for Inspire 2022. People who have already registered for the three-day event and are eager to sign up for specific sessions have begun to do so.
“Inspire 2022 has nearly 80 workshops planned,” said Marianne Giebel, Inspire 2022 program assistant. “Whether you are interested in worship planning or disability advocacy, environmental stewardship or youth outreach, or if you are an elder, a deacon, a Bible study leader, or are involved in any other way with the work of a local congregation, Inspire has something for you—and likely multiple workshops in your area of interest.”
Inspire 2022 is a denomination-wide event planned for Aug. 4-6 in Tinley Park, Ill. It is the third such event that the CRCNA has held. The first Inspire event took place in Detroit, Mich., in 2017, and the second was held in Windsor, Ont., in 2019. The 2022 event was originally planned for 2021 but was postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Planners are hoping that people will now be eager to attend and get together in person again.
“One of the best parts about previous Inspire events was simply being together with people from across our denomination, sharing our experiences, worshiping together, and learning from one another,” said Colin Watson, executive director of the CRCNA. “After years of COVID restrictions, I think there are many people wanting to experience that again.”
Registration for Inspire 2022 opened in January, and while the number of participants was originally a bit low, it picked up as the early-bird deadline in April approached. Now that workshop registration has opened, organizers expect numbers to rise even further.
“There are a lot of excellent workshop presenters and some exciting off-site options as well. People don’t want to be disappointed by missing their opportunity to get their first choices, so we expect a lot of people to sign up soon,” Watson said.
Workshop registration is taking place by way of a mobile app called Whova. This tool will also allow Inspire attendees to access resources and connect with each other prior to the event.
“We decided to use Whova for Inspire 2022 because we were impressed with the tools it offered,” said Tim Postuma, another member of the planning team. “It does require people to download a mobile app, but once they’ve done so, they can select their workshops, receive information from workshop presenters, and even connect with other attendees in advance of the event.”
While Whova allows attendees to connect with each other within the app, it does not share personal information. This means that groups who share similar interests, such as Sunday school teachers or refugee sponsorship committees, can arrange to meet up during a free time at Inspire to share stories with each other. Workshop presenters can share notes in advance or follow up with more information after the event. Whova also makes it easy to arrange car pooling and ride sharing.
“We are excited to see how technology can make the Inspire experience even better,” said Giebel. “And if anyone runs into difficulty with the app, we are only a phone call or email away and are happy to assist you.”
To learn more and to register for Inspire, visit crcna.org/Inspire. Registration is $110 per person, and group rates are available for groups of five or more participants coming from the same congregation. There is also a generous refund policy for registrants who may need to cancel because of COVID complications or another reason at a later date.