Annual Events and Retreats
FUSN community life is enriched by special events throughout the year; please see a brief outline of just some of our annual events and retreats!
At the Ingathering Service, members bring small amounts of water from their summer travels and pour them into a single vessel. Later, the water is sterilized and used in baby dedications or other rituals.
Each Columbus Day weekend, about 100 community members gather at Ferry Beach, a Unitarian Universalist camp and conference center perched on a lovely beach in southern Maine, to enjoy camaraderie and nearby attractions. The group organizes activities, services, and games, ride bikes or walk in the woods, and may also take advantage of nearby attractions. Some people stay put and enjoy the beach, sports, and crafts; others venture to the Portland Museum, apple picking, or kayaking.
Several members generously open their homes to the FUSN community for a Thanksgiving potluck celebration!
The Holiday Fair is held on the first Saturday of December every year and is a wonderful annual fellowship experience, as well as one of FUSN’s largest fundraising events after the annual budget drive. Members make jams, jellies, relishes and vinegars; raffle a quilt, craft ornaments and other artifacts; collect books, jewelry, china and glassware, furniture and other objects to sell; purchase trees and wreaths and participate in a silent auction. There is a role for every member of the FUSN community, and the event is a perfect activity for folks who can’t commit to a long-term project or would like to get to know people better.
Holiday services are offered on Christmas Eve at 5:00 p.m. for a multigenerational gathering; 7:00 p.m. for traditional stories and carols; and at 11:30 p.m. for less traditional readings, music and chimes for each baby born that year. The evening’s offerings are the primary source for the Minister’s Discretionary Fund. There are baked goods and apple cider after the service for all to enjoy!
The Services Auction provides FUSNites the opportunity to bid on services that are mostly donated by FUSN folks. Dinner is served, and the evening is meant to be a fun community-building event in addition to raising funds to support FUSN. If you are interested in helping with this event, the Services Auction Committee is always looking for new members who like to have fun and enjoying working with a group.
On Music Sunday, usually in February, the service is devoted to the talents of FUSN’s singers and instrumentalists. The choir performs special music and often extra instrumentalists enhance the performance.
The FUSN Annual Budget Drive raises funds for the society.
A Saturday night Youth Coffee House is an entirely youth-organized annual event featuring live music performances and comedy acts that benefits Communities without Borders, serving AIDS orphans and vulnerable children in Zambia. If you are interested in assisting with organizing the 2017 Coffeehouse, please contact us.
The Annual Fellowship Dinner is a lively, well attended gathering that is part potluck and partly prepared by volunteers and served by youth members. Dancing follows a brief update on the Annual Budget Drive.
The celebration of Easter, which usually falls in April, includes the Annual Easter Egg Hunt for the younger children in the RE program.
The Youth Service, a lively and original annual event, is planned and presented by the youth group.
Members participating in the annual Walk for Hunger walk (all or part) of the 10 miles to Boston-then they get a ride home. Children in RE often participate in a mini-walk in the neighborhood. All pledges go to Project Bread.
In May, the congregation celebrates the graduation of the Coming Of Age candidates in a special service where candidates share their personal credos.
Each Memorial Day weekend, nearly half the community adjourns to New Hampshire’s Lake Winnipesauke for a weekend of nature, activities, and friend-building at Sandy Island. Activities range from crafts, dancing, games, book discussions, softball, ultimate frisbee, capture the flag, yoga, talent show, bonfire, swimming, kayaking, outdoor sports, to nature walks!
We celebrate Flower Sunday where congregants share flowers with one another, as well as what they are grateful for during our celebratory service. Important society decisions and elections are then held at our Annual Meeting in June. FUSN Summer Services run from the third Sunday in June through the Sunday before Labor day. These informal and lively lay-led services begin earlier—at 9:30 a.m.—in the Parish Hall.