Chris Tripputi

NYC Favorite Things - Adventures Beyond

One of our favorite things about living in New York City was not just the adventures that we had in the city, but also the adventures beyond the city. We got to experience some incredible places beyond New York City over the past 2 years as well. Here were some of our favorites:

     Cooperstown - I had a blast driving up to Cooperstown with my Dad (Greg Smith) and best friend (Chris Tripputi) to see Craig Biggio get inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. This had been a bucket list for some time and to get to do it during this season of life with my Dad and Chris made it extra sweet.

     Washington DC - one Saturday morning we woke up and asked what we should do today. We decided Washington DC was the answer, so in less than an hour we booked a hotel room, packed a couple bags and loaded up the family to DC. While it was a quick trip, it was so cool to get to spend a couple of days in the country’s capital and experience this together as a family. Thanks also to the Cunningham’s for hooking us up with a sweet hotel room!

     Boston - while I wish I could have spent more time here to see family, it was very cool to spend a half day in Boston seeing some historic spots, passing by Fenway Park, and eating some clam chowder. I definitely hope to make it back to Boston again soon!

     Maine - we had a blast with my in laws renting a cabin on a lake in Maine and simply relaxing and taking in the beauty of Maine. I also ate a bunch of Lobster!

     Philadelphia - noticing how close Philadelphia is to New York we decided to take a day trip. We saw the Liberty Bell, walked around downtown, ran up the Rocky steps and ate some Philly Cheesesteak (wit wiz)!

     Toronto - one of our last trips we took was with my Mom and explored beyond the United States into Canada. We found an incredible AirBnB 20 floors up with floor to ceiling glass windows in downtown Toronto. We got to explore a castle, go to a Blue Jays game, eat some Tim Horton’s, walk along the beach and really take in the beauty of Toronto. Very cool city!

     Niagara Falls - while I had been before, this is one of those sights that a picture (or video) cannot fully capture. We explored the falls on both sides and still blown away by the power and beauty of the falls!

     Snow Tubing in Poconos - if you ask my kids what the highlight beyond the city was, they would tell you Snow Tubing! We explored out one Saturday and found snow tubing in the Poconos. It really was so cool and something I hope we get to do again before too much longer! We’re not patient enough for ski lessons and snow tubing gave us the thrill of going down the mountain without all of the work.

     The Jersey Shore - we had low expectations for the Jersey Shore (based on the TV Show) and were blown away. Pete Scazzero tipped us off to a more family friendly beach and we loved it! The sand was great, water was beautiful and the weather was perfect. Other than some sunburn the next day, this was our favorite beach trip in the Northeast!

     Maritime Aquarium in Connecticut - this was another favorite of the kids. Katie found this aquarium and we went back as a family. It was a full day and the kids continue to talk about the shark tank and touching the stingrays. This is a really unique experience if you have kids.

     Hershey Park - while adventuring out to Canada and Niagara Falls, we also squeezed in a day and a half at Hershey Park. The amusement park was great, but the experience within the chocolate factory was tremendous getting to design your own bar, learning about the history and even doing a chocolate tasting. This was a really unique experience that the whole family enjoyed.

I feel like we could still do so much more, but grateful to have been able to so easily adventure beyond the city to these unique places. Also grateful for our little Mazda 3 that we bought when we first got married (almost 12 years ago) and continues to take us on so many of these great adventures.

Introducing the New - Old River Terrace UMC website

For about a year I have been trying to help my Dad's church, Old River Terrace United Methodist Church in Channelview, TX (outside of Houston), setup a new website.  While I work on websites a lot, I'm not a web developer and didn't have a web developer on my team who could create it.  I purchased a Wordpress Theme from Church Themes and felt like this would be the best solution, but I struggled in the setup process and the new website really wasn't much better than their existing site. Another drawback was they would have to learn Wordpress which is a learning curve for some.

I basically gave up on the project and recently reached out to my friends Matt and Chris at Creative Church Staffing and asked if there is any way to create a simple church website on Squarespace that could replace the church's existing site.  They quickly jumped on the project and before we knew it, the church had a new website live on the internet!  Not only is the website a much greater experience for potential guests to the church and members, but it's far easier to manage using Squarespace's all in one domain and site hosting as well as their Content Management System that really couldn't be any easier.  

Take a look at their new site and old site below:

New site:

Old site:

Don't just look at pictures, take the site for a spin at http://ortumc.com.

Wish your church could have a site that looks this good at an affordable price and that's easy to manage?  Reach out to my friends at Creative Church Staffing and I know they would love to help!

Online Church Leaders is Here!

OCLslide
OCLslide

After over 6 months of preparation, I'm excited to announce that Online Church Leaders is here! Go to http://OnlineChurchLeaders.com to sign up for your FREE account today!

This has been a labor of love, and I feel so grateful that Community Bible Church has been generous enough to allow me to invest in other churches in this way.  We are essentially giving away all that we have learned about Online Church over the past 4 years in this FREE training program!  It's not just what we have learned at Community Bible Church, but collectively among other friends pioneering this new ministry opportunity from LifeChurch.tv, Saddlback Church, Seacoast Church, Dream Center, and more!

Here are some of the learning portals included in the training:

  • Building Your Platform
  • Creating Your Content
  • Attracting Your Crowd
  • Developing Your Volunteers
  • Online Giving
  • Measuring Success
  • and more!

We have a goal with this platform over the next 2 years to help 500 churches launch an Online Church campus reaching an average of 2,000 each week.  That would be 1 million people a week attending an Online Church!  We believe this is very possible and just a matter of churches understanding the opportunity, embracing the technology, and applying the basic principles lined out here.

Here's what some key Online Churches have said about this new ministry opportunity:

 "Saddleback Church’s Online Campus reached over 208 countries/territories this past year with over 2/3 of our viewers non-local. Plus, with over 1,100 groups meeting all over the globe. Through a simple, but well executed Church Online strategy anyone from anywhere can engage with our church." - Jay Kranda from Saddleback Church

“God is using online ministry in very real ways around the world. Our ministry has been extended to people we never would have been able to reach otherwise, and lives are being transformed through the life-giving message of Christ. People who were feeling empty have found hope. People who were lonely have found community. People who were stuck in destructive decisions have found strength to change… all through the power of Christ.” - Alan George from LifeChurch.tv

Without a doubt, OnlineChurchLeaders.com is the most valuable priceless resource that will bring more churches into the 21st century before the 22nd century gets here! Get online already!” - DJ Chuang from the Social Media Church Podcast

So what are you waiting for?  Sign up today at http://OnlineChurchLeaders.com!