Wednesday, June 16, 2021

BACK-TO-BACK PERFECT TRIPS!!...5 DAYS OF FLAWLESS FUN WITH SOUL ADVENTURES!!!

 
Soooooo much to share and so little time!! Our campsite was about 10 miles away from cell phone coverage and it was ABSOLUTELY AMAZING... as well as incredibly healthy to get kids (and adults) away from technology and into nature (aka: God's playground)!! The past 5 days with the students and leaders from SOUL Adventures in God's amazing creation was spectacular! Except for sleeping, eating, and devotions these kids played & adventured NONSTOP! They couldn't get enough of playing together! No clicks. No arguments. No issues. Just PURE Christ-centered fun!!! I look forward to sharing more pictures and experiences in the days ahead. Our profound thanks to all of our volunteers, staff, donors, supporters, encouragers, prayer warriors, and mighty God for making this ministry and these opportunities possible and so powerful! God bless you all! 
 
 
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Sunday, June 6, 2021

A PERFECT TRIP!!!...CRAMMED 2021 WAS........NOTHING LESS THAN GOD-AWESOME!!


The last few weeks have been nonstop and I haven't had a chance to post any updates. I'm thrilled to kick off the updates with the report of a PERFECT TRIP! Our first-ever CRAMMED Adventure Trip started last Wednesday with 25 incredible people including 3 families with young children. It ended today. The trip could not have gone any better! No hiccups. No errors. No problems of any kind. Absolutely flawless in everything that matters. Glory to God! Within 24 hours we were like one big happy family doing adventures together while chasing after the heart of God. God forged lifelong friendships, unforgettable memories, and authentic spiritual growth over the course of 5 days! In so many ways we didn't want the trip to end. Over the next few days I'll post summaries of the main adventures as well as some of the highlights that made this trip so special. Thank you so much to every volunteer, Ministry Partner, donor, prayer warrior, friend, family member, supporter, and participant that helped kick off our summer camps with this perfect trip! ALL GLORY TO GOD!!!
 
 
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Sunday, May 23, 2021

CON"GRADUATION" CARSON!

CON"GRADUATION" to my amazing nephew on graduating high school!! Carson, way to gooooo! You are gifted & blessed beyond measure and I look forward to watching where God directs your steps in the years ahead =) =) =) 
 
 
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HOMEMADE ICE CREAM, WATERMELON, AAAAAAAAND MANY MANY THANKS TO SEVERAL FANTASTIC VOLUNTEERS!!

Yesterday was another great day of hard work, progress, & delicious calories with 13 FANTASTIC VOLUNTEERS as we prepared for our upcoming summer adventure camps! Many many thanks to Tammy, Jason, the Hofstede family, the Routman family, Traci, Carson, and my Mom & Dad for all of their love-driven hard work!! They turned a day full of potential into a day full of accomplishment! Thank you so so so much for living out your faith in Jesus in such a way that it compels such loving acts of service for others! And special thanks to my parents for making homemade ice cream and bringing a watermelon to the work party! And another special thanks to my awesome neighbors for making homemade egg rolls and Vietnamese lemongrass chicken wings. I can't even begin to articulate how delicious they were!!!! GREAT! DAY!

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

THANK YOU TEAM HEBERT!!...CALLING ALL VOLUNTEERS!!!...MORE VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES!!!


Last Saturday the phenomenal Hebert family volunteered at GTD Central Command (aka: my house) while we were running our paddleboarding trip. They came over and constructed a paddleboard rack and painted about 40 trim boards. They did a wonderful job, and I can't tell you how much they blessed my heart and this ministry! Thank you so much Hebert family!!! You guys rock!
  
With 11 days remaining until we head to NC to run our summer camps we still have several projects to complete and I could use some more awesome volunteers!!
  
Below are the dates I have scheduled for Volunteer Work Days. Let me know what dates and times you can help out. 
  
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* SAT May 22 (12:30p - 6:30p)
* MON May 24 (9a - 4p)
* WED May 26 (9a - 4p)
* FRI May 28 (9a - 4p)
* SAT May 22 (12:30p - 6:30p)
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Tasks include several GTD projects and home repair / renovation projects. These include things like: 
   
<> Reorganize our equipment trailer (out with the old; in with the new!) AND finish minor repairs 
<> Detail, organize, & prep trucks 
<> Repair dog box
<> Build 2 more portable showers
<> Install security lights
<> Install security cameras 
<> Install 16 ft rear gate on rollers 
<> Transfer mailbox from side of house to front yard
<> Attach trim boards around windows
<> Caulk around all windows and any openings
<> Painting, painting, & more painting
<> Pressure washing (many things!)
<> Stain & treat wood fencing that will be used around the perimeter of the property to protect our gear
<> Trim trees
<> Finish organizing garage as workshop, laundry area, & fitness area 
<> Build Pergola 
<> Many more things!
  
Hopefully this gives you an idea of the kind of projects I need help with. They range in skill levels from "No specific skills needed" to "Skilled workers needed" and everything in-between. 
   
If you're interested in helping, volunteering, and serving we would love your help! I've got the dates above set aside for Volunteer Work Days if you're able to come out for a few hours on one or some of these. 
  
Also, like Team Hebert you can arrange to come over on other days or times I won't be here... or like Team McCormick you may find that there are projects that you can take home and do on your own timeline.
  
If you're interested and available then let me know however you can... Leave a comment below or private message me or email info@goingthedistance.org or call the GTD Adventure Hotline and leave a voicemail (this is an office phone so it doesn't receive text messages... 727-394-9483) or text me if you have my cellphone number... or build a fire and send me a smoke signal =) 
  
Thank you in advance for your partnership and help in this ministry... many hands make for light work =) 
  
God bless you!


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Monday, May 17, 2021

GTD's FIRST EVER SUP TRIP IN THE BOOKS!...AND WE LOVED EVERY MINUTE OF IT!!

  
On Saturday we were thrilled to run our first ever Stand Up Paddleboarding trip with 14 fantastic people and our NEW PADDLEBOARDS!! The weather was perfect! After working on our paddleboarding skills in a protected inlet we braved the open water and skimmed our way over to a nearby island for some beach fun. We are soooooo looking forward to many more paddleboarding events and many years ahead of all kinds of SUP adventures!!
   
As always, we want to thank our small army of AMAZING DONORS who make free trips like this possible and enable the acquisition of new gear!! You guys rock our world and bless a lot of people!
  
And most importantly, we give God all the honor, praise, & glory!!

  
  
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Wednesday, May 12, 2021

IF THERE WAS NO VISION... THERE MAY HAVE NEVER BEEN A GTD!

  
As GTD celebrates 25 years of ministry we pause to reflect & honor some of the consequential moments that served to either launch, propel, or sustain this ministry. We have so many people to thank, and one amazing God to praise!
  
30 years ago I spent 17 days by myself camping at Camel Lake in Apalachicola National Forest seeking God for my life mission & vision. This drawing is the culmination of those 17 days. It's what God put on my heart and mind... or more accurately, what He allowed me to discover that He had already planted in my soul, but I needed to be undistracted and intentional in order to find it. 
  
From those days in November 1991 forward I have poured every ounce of my blood, sweat, tears, prayers, time, resources, and very soul into building this ministry. 
  
It's nowhere near the full vision I have for it or the potential it could be, but it has also been way more impactful in other ways than I could have ever anticipated. All glory to God!
  
A very funny thing about this drawing is that I misspelled the word "Discipleship". It serves to remind me that God usually calls us before He equips us... then the faith journey begins =) 
  
I have so many people to thank for this moment in time... my favorite author Tim Hansel whose words inspired my actions and whose adventure ministry in California was where I originally planned to drive to after my 2 weeks were completed at Camel Lake... my Mom, Dad, Sister, Cousins, Aunts & Uncles for always supporting me... my young adult pastor & his wife Tom & Linda Elkins for believing in me and giving me leadership opportunities as well as preaching some of the best Bible based messages and building an incredible young adult ministry that blessed me with the best lifelong friendships I could ever imagine... my closest friends during this time Chuck, Jano, Danny, Bryan, Thomas, Ebby, $teve, Darren, Cindy, Wilkinson, Mecko, Carney, Wendy, Roger, Debbie and a host of friends from the young adult ministry too long to list... and others that my little pea brain can't think of in this moment... THANK YOU SO MUCH to these people & more who poured into my life knowingly and unknowingly during this time. You blessed me more than you may ever know till Heaven.
  
The year was 1991 and I had recently turned 21 years old.
 
 
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Tuesday, May 11, 2021

OUR NEWEST FREE EVENT!...SIDEWINDER PADDLEBOARDING TREK!.....THIS SATURDAY (INCLUDES LUNCH)!!


This Saturday GTD starts skimming the water with our new paddleboards! Yayyy!! PTL!!!

We only have 10 of the 20 total spots still remaining so register ASAP to claim a paddleboard. 
  
We will be serving lunch then practicing in a protected inlet before heading out on open water to a nearby island. It's going to be a blast!!
  
COST: Free (lunch included)
DATE: Saturday May 15th
TIME: 11:30am - 3:30pm
LOCATION: Shelter #2 - War Veterans Memorial Park (next to Bay Pines just outside of Seminole, Florida)
AGES: Must be 16 or older
  
For details and to register click on these links:
  
SIDEWINDER WEBSITE: https://gtdbullhorn.blogspot.com/p/sidewinder-paddleboarding-trek.html
 
SIDEWINDER REGISTRATION: https://gtdbullhorn.blogspot.com/p/registration-sidewinder-paddleboarding.html
 
Thank you to our amazing supporters and donors who make equipment acquisition and free events like this possible! We love you GTD supporters!!
  
Celebrating 25 years of God-awesome adventures!!


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Sunday, May 9, 2021

FREE PADDLEBOARDING DAY TRIP......THIS UPCOMING SATURDAY!!

  
Sorry for the short notice (soooo much going on), but I'm excited to let you know that this upcoming Saturday (May 15, 2021) GTD will be providing our first ever Paddleboarding Day Trip... and it's FREE (including lunch)!!
  
We will have at least 15 spots available. The location will be at War Veterans Memorial Park. The time and details are TBD (To Be Determined)... but will probably take place around lunchtime.
  
I just wanted to post a quick update to put this on your radar while I nail down the details.
   
Comment below if you're interested and you'll be the first to know how to register for this event =) 

ONE TOUGH MOTHER! ..."I ALWAYS WANTED TO BE A RED HEAD."

Happy Mother's Day to one of the toughest and funniest moms on the planet. Usually on Mother's Day you post a flattering picture of your Mom with some gushing words that epitomizes her selfless and giving character. So that's exactly what this post is... Last weekend my Mom fell around 4am while coming back from the bathroom. We've probably prevented over 100 falls over the past 4+ months of 24/7 caregiving, but this is one that fell through the cracks. She hit the top of her head on the dresser. The gash would later require a trip to the ER and 4 staples. While laying face down on the floor at 4am at the end of the bed in the shape of a typical chalk outline of a deceased body you would see on a TV detective show my Mom simply said, "Excuse me" in a humorous tone to my Dad who was about to step on her (LOL!). Dad heard the thud and got out of bed to check on her. With some help she sat up. As we tended to her wound with blood flowing down her head saturating her hair my Mom, without missing a beat and with perfect comedic timing, simply said, "I always wanted to be a red head!" Hahahahahahaha!!! In that moment the essence of my Mom was captured. Selfless, giving, strong, peaceful, and never-wanting-to-be-the-center-of-attention she cracks a joke that puts laughter in our hearts, sets us all at ease, and reminds us that she'll never be a victim... she'll always be the first reponder - even in her own injury. In the middle of her personal suffering she is always more concerned about us than she is about herself. That's my Mom being a MOM! Later on that morning Traci took Mom to the ER. Mom had 4 staples put into her head WITH NO PAIN MEDS (or even a bite stick). And what did she ask for?! A box of Kleenex to wipe away her tears?? No way! Just a bowl of ice cream so she could savor the moment while sitting on the ER bed with 4 staples in her head. So while these pictures are a little unorthodox for a Mother's Day post they are some of the most flattering and gushing (no pun intended) pictures and words I could ever show and tell to describe my Mom and how special, amazing, strong, funny, and truly beautiful she is. Even with blood oozing down her face =) 
  
God totally nailed it when He invented MOMS! Happy Mother's Day to all you selfless, strong, loving Moms out there!! This day is for you!
 










  

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

CRAMMED REGISTRATION OFFICIALLY OPEN!...$25 PER PERSON (PLUS RAFTING)!!....ONE MONTH AWAY (CRAMMED: June 2-6, 2021)

 
There are 25 spots currently available for our 5-day / 4-night CRAMMED Adventure Trip! Rock climbing, rappelling, waterfall slides, optional white water rafting, campfires, seeking God first, and sooooo much more!!
 
Click here for details & registration
 
NOTE: CRAMMED is the same Adventure Trip as SLAMMED, but with a different name so you can tell them apart easier. SLAMMED is scheduled for June 30 - July 4, but CRAMMED is scheduled for June 2-6. Both events will be in the same city (Brevard, NC), but at different campgrounds. And both events will be for the same unheard of price of ONLY $25 to celebrate 25 years of ministry!!
   
It's a great way to celebrate 25 years!!
 
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Going The Distance Adventure Ministry
God-awesome adventures since 1996!
https://gtdbullhorn.blogspot.com/
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Sunday, May 2, 2021

DEJA VU?...NO, DEJA TWO!....ANOTHER TRIP TO THE ISLAND =)

 
On Friday we hosted a kayaking trip to an island for PPEA Homeschoolers. On Saturday we hosted a kayaking trip to that same island for the Zeal Youth Group of Calvary Chapel Fellowship! It was another God-awesome day full of fantastic people, fUntastic activities, and spectacular weather! It was like deja vu!
  
And thank you so much to our super terrific donors and supporters for enabling us to purchase new kayaks and gear this year!!! They are already being used to share the gospel and further the Kingdom of God! God bless you all!!!!


Saturday, May 1, 2021

PHENOMENAL TRIP with PPEA Homeschoolers yesterday!!


PHENOMENAL TRIP with PPEA Homeschoolers yesterday!! Great people, great adventure, great day! Thank You Jesus =) 
  
Check out all the pics here:

https://goingthedistance.smugmug.com/2021/2021-Day-Trip-PPEA-Homeschool-Youth

Friday, April 30, 2021

It's a beautiful day!

Preparing to take 30 homeschoolers kayaking over for an island clean-up adventure!

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

YESSSS!!! WE'VE GOT PADDLEBOARDS!!! ...GTD ACQUIRES 20 PADDLEBOARDS!!! ....THANKS TO OUR AMAZING DONORS!!!

 
 
This is one of my happiest updates of all time! Thanks to our phenomenal donors from our Annual Fundraiser this past December (and continued donations thereafter) GTD now owns 20 new recreational paddleboards!! We are thrilled beyond words to now be able to add this incredible activity to our list of local adventure options!!! Literally thousands of people will use these paddleboards over the next few years as we venture into God's amazing playground. We believe this is a gamechanger type of addition into our ministry... to our Day Trip Program... to our Retreat Program... to our future Birthday Bash Program... to our future local Summer Adventure Day Camp Program (coming this July)... and so much more!!
  
Thank you soooooo much to our faithful GTD supporters and donors for making this acquisition possible!! We thank God for you, and we are blown away by your faithful generosity!
  
Yayyy for GTD! Many thanks to our amazing supporters!! Aaaaaand all glory to God!!!