Thursday, October 27, 2011

10 tips for a successful super saturday

Whew! Another successful Relief Society meeting under our belts. Super Saturday is an activity held once a year for the women in our church. We get together to socialize, craft, learn new skills, and eat. Yep, it's good times. I was on the Relief Society Board for this event and there's a lot of planning and work that goes into it. I've put together a simple list of things we've learned.

1. Choose simple, quality, up-to-date projects that fit the needs of the sisters in your ward.
We hold our Super Saturday in October each year, so we focus on projects that can be gifted for Christmas and decorate our homes for the holidays. We also try to choose projects that teach a new skill. Our ward has a huge number of children, so darling hair accessories are always a no-brainer.

After making fifteen hair accessories, Sandra started teaching Melissa. :)  
Sandra's hair accessories (shhhh, they're Christmas gifts).
Projects that require painting add a level of mess and wait time. If you choose to include them, limit the number. Also limit how many projects you offer (and color choices you offer) for simplicity sake, kit prep, and teaching purposes.

2. Use your blog.
Show projects and information at several meetings, but also on a board member's blog. We had several sisters go to this blog for photos, descriptions, and information. You can also include tutorials or instruction sheets later to help those who were unable to attend Super Saturday or who need help remembering steps. An added bonus is that you can share your ideas with other RS boards. ;)

3. Delegate each project to a Relief Society board member or sister.
Each sister assigned a project is responsible for searching out pricing before the projects are displayed, ordering/purchasing supplies, compiling kits, and teaching the class. Work together for large orders on supplies that can be purchased from one site (you’ll save on shipping and can get quantity discounts). We use a lot for ribbon and tins and used for our wreath forms this time around. When pricing projects, we include a buffer of about .10 for small projects and .25 for larger projects to account for price fluctuation and so no one ends up eating a price difference. We end up using it more often than not. If there are extra funds, we use it to purchase snacks for the classrooms (we all know chocolate is a must while crafting!). If you get a killer deal on something you hadn’t planned to find on sale, just tuck a dollar (or whatever amount) back in project kits.

4. Give yourself plenty of time to order and kit projects.
Our time line is usually three weeks for showing projects and sign-ups and another three weeks to order and kit projects.

5. Kit and label each project.
Kitting all projects is a huge help with organization and will save you so much grief. (Plus everything looks so nice packaged all together.) We include all the supplies for a single project in a Ziploc bag and write each sister's name on it. We box up the kits and each crafter can walk into the designated classroom or area, grab her kit and get right to work. Plus, it gives everyone a place to keep supplies together. If someone was unable to attend Super Saturday, they can pick up their kits later.
Lily demonstrating how to make Kung Pao Chicken and Fried Rice.
6. Provide a simple lunch.
We all get a little cranky when we get hungry, so a simple lunch is always nice. Some of our sisters don’t do crafts, but join us for the free demo and lunch. We highly encourage this! We also invite the Laurels to join us, and many times married daughters come with their mothers. The extra numbers can add up quickly. Include a sign-up sheet for lunch with the other order forms to get an accurate head count. Keep lunch simple and something the sisters can serve up and take back to the tables and keep working. Our lunch included: crock pots of soup, a large salad, rolls, and cookies/bars. We also had samples from our cooking demo class. We asked RS sisters to sign-up for lunch items so the board members could focus on classes.

7. Have a trial run for board members and teachers.
Getting together with other board members (usually a week or two before Super Saturday) to teach each other the projects being offered is very useful and we have a blast. We fine tune instructions and details, have time to do the projects we signed-up for, and just in case someone gets the stomach flu (yes, it happened!), we have substitute teachers who have already completed the project.

Cami pre-cut all her felt circles and completed her wreath at Super Saturday.
8. Allow time for pre-work.
One of the projects for our current Super Saturday was a wreath that involved cutting out between 150-200 felt circles. I sent out an e-mail letting the sisters know I had felt and templates ready to pick up if they wanted to get started cutting early. Those who did were able to complete the project at Super Saturday. This would be a great option for painted projects so the sisters don’t have to wait for items to dry.

9. Give sisters additional opportunities to complete projects.
We schedule an additional follow-up “finishing day or night” so sisters can bring their unfinished projects to work on. It extends the fun and it’s great to get our projects completed. We’ve held “finishing nights” as a Relief Society meeting in the past (not in conjunction with SS) or as just a neighborhood activity with a lot of success. Everyone brings whatever project they’re working on—quilting, organizing photos, and yes, I even brought my ironing once. Work is always more fun with friends.

9 1/2. Order extra supplies and kit extra projects.
This tip isn’t necessary, but it's nice. (That’s why it only counts for ½ a tip.) If you have the time, put together a few additional kits for each project. The hair accessory project I taught has a covered button in the center. I love covered buttons! I knew the other sisters would too. I ordered more than what I needed in bulk and additional pusher tools at a great price and packaged them as a kit for those interested. They sold in the first hour. I also made up 15 extra hair accessory kits and sold them too. We offered empty tins from our chocolate tins project for those who were interested. It's nice to be able to take advantage of quantity discounts when available.

10. Have a follow-up meeting after the event.
While the experience is still fresh on everyone’s mind, have a quick board meeting to discuss both what went well and any changes you might make for next time. Then keep your notes for next year. Overall, we felt our Super Saturday was a huge success, but we’d also add or change a few things:
  •  Next year we’d like to have all the projects together in the cultural hall instead of different classrooms. That will require meeting in a different building because of sports.
  • We want to inform the sisters of a realistic time commitment for each project so they can order/plan accordingly. 
  • We need to find a tactful way to tell many of the sisters to clean up after themselves! Too much of our time was spent throwing away scraps and packaging others left sitting on the tables and floor. It also extended our final clean-up time. Yes, there were multiple wastebaskets in each classroom. Any suggestions?
  • We love our Young Women. It was so fun having them join us, but we found that most of our teachers’ time was spent helping them with projects. We need to come up with a solution. Maybe suggest to the YW leaders that the girls have a separate mini Super Saturday? The girls would love it!
Overall, I think the key is to keep things simple. Simple, simple, simple. That way everyone gets to have an enjoyable time.

*Glad I took notes, I was just called as the Relief Society Meeting Coordinator for our ward!



    1. Thanks for sharing your tips and experiences. My super saturday is next week! It's going to be a busy week for sure. I know I should have delegated more, that's for sure!

    2. I'm so happy I stumbled along to your blog today!!! I've been trying to organize something similar to this for a few years (more based along scrapbooking) but each time i get more into the 'weeds' it just seems like too much and i give up and just have a few friends over instead. i will be bookmarking this post!!!

    3. Nat,
      It's a lot of work, but so, so fun. Just be sure you don't try to do it all yourself. Half the fun is working together with friends! Good luck.

    4. Oh boy, I am so glad I found your blog. I was called as the RS activitys coordinator last week. I have NEVER been in charge of anything in my life. I'm a total follower, not a leader, EEEKS. You are a rock star! Thanks for all your smarts. Hillary Smith

    5. Hillary,
      Congratulations! It's a big calling, but lots of fun too. Just keep it super simple and you'll do great.

    6. I've survived planning two Super Saturdays (or our Fabulous Fridays) and am always looking for ideas for improvement! Where do you find your ideas for crafts? Pinterest? Thanks again for sharing your life and work with us!

    7. Wow, stunning blog. Newly called 2nd councillor and all this falls on my shoulders. Last month and our first activity and I suggested that the month of your birthday then you would be responsible for the food and cleaning or clearing up. That way everyone has a turn once a year. Obviously still using the presidency to assist. It worked like a dream and with a lot of enthusiasium.

    8. Wow, stunning blog. Newly called 2nd councillor and all this falls on my shoulders. Last month and our first activity and I suggested that the month of your birthday then you would be responsible for the food and cleaning or clearing up. That way everyone has a turn once a year. Obviously still using the presidency to assist. It worked like a dream and with a lot of enthusiasium.

    9. Thank you so much for sharing this info! I'm excited to get our Super Saturday planned! Ü

    10. This is amazing! I am planning a Super Saturday and your tips are so helpful. Thanks for posting!