street school

TBASDan McElwain is creative, artistic, a gifted relationship builder, and just twisted enough to be inspiring. And he's my friend.

Early in my youth ministry days, Dan was the high school student who said, as we were leaving church after a youth ministry gathering, "You have the best job in the world!"

"I do," I said. And meant it.

Much later on in my YM career, on the very eve of a mission trip to Denver with 15 students, Budget Rent-a-Truck called to tell me that those two 15 passenger vans I reserved and paid a sizable deposit on were not available. "So sorry," they said. They offered me three 7 passenger vans instead, which left me short one driver. I called Dan. "What are you doing for the next 11 days?" I asked. "Goin' to Denver," he said.

Dan taught in inner city Cleveland. He taught art at a special art-centered school. There was some budget cutting and of course, art was eliminated. Being twisted, Dan thought, "Hmmm... I'll start a street school." Actually it wasn't that simple but it could have been, we're talking about Dan McElwain here. This is a guy who looked around his kitchen one day and said to his wife, "We should redo the kitchen." So they tore out the cabinets and the floor. Immediately. It's finished now, likely as not.

Dan and his wife Amy (who is one of those people who brighten a room just by being in it) will launch the Bridge Avenue School (TBAS) in August. Their philosophy is terrific: we believe all students learn well when taught well.

They need support. I realize most of the few readers of this blog do not live near Cleveland, Ohio, but if you do (or don't) and have not thought about supporting TBAS, think about it now. You can attend their Bash on the Bridge (Dan loves to bash on just about anything) on July 16th. Make it a stop on your summer vacation schedule! At $10 ($5 for kids), it's the best entertainment bargain on this or that side of the Mississppi. You get to hear the Sam Getz Band, what else could you want?

Jannotti tag: theology

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