On August 6th, 2017, over 60 members of the Great Sun Nation got out of the blistering heat to the air conditioned BB&T arena to take part in Monster Jam 2017. As part of the experience, we were all given pit passes to see the trucks up close and meet the drivers. The kids were amazed at the size of the trucks and the dad’s wished they could drive these on I-95. Once we were seated and earplugs in place, everybody enjoyed 90 minutes of car crushing, deafening thunder and acrobatic stunts put on by the drivers. Grave Digger and Zombie seemed to be the kids favorite trucks. This was the first time we did this as a nation and everybody was excited to come back and see it again.
On December 6, 2017, The City of Boca Raton held their 46th annual Holiday Parade and the “Great Sun Nation” showed up BIG!!! Over 60 member of our Nation united to participate in the march down US-1 to show their Holiday Cheer!!! The Cities theme this year was “Light Up Boca”, and The Great Sun Nation did just that….!!!! Our Holiday float had over 1,000 icicle lights on it, Holiday dancing lights projected all over, a real gas burning fire pit and our fearless leader “Flaming Owl” was leading the tribe with the “Spirit Stick” shooting flames 10 feet into the night sky… Additionally, most of the tribe was adorned in lighted necklaces or glow jewelry. The float was led by our kids holding the GSN banner while other kids handed out candy and flyers to the thousands of patrons lining the streets. Dads looked great too in their GSN vests and some wore their tribal headdresses all the time keeping an eye on the kids and keeping them safe. We were greeted by applause, ooohs and aaahs as we marched down the Federal Highway. Everyone had a great time and look forward to next year’s parade.
On Friday, May 19th, Great Sun Nation held our annual Xtreme Action Park event along with hosting a lemonade stand to benefit Alex’s Lemonade Stand with a purpose to raise money for Pediatric Cancer Research. Many thanks to Aaron Parkinson and Rocio from Xtreme Action Park as each year this event gets even better. Our attendance was down from the previous years, but I think that will change next year once those who were in attendance get the word out on all the new activities that this venue has to offer. The lines were very manageable compared to years past, and there was almost never a waiting period for any of the activities. If you haven’t been there in a while, go check out Xtreme Action Park. It is amazing with all the new items from roller skating, to the trampoline park and don’t miss the Dark Ride interactive theatre. Even though we all had a blast, we still managed to raise almost $3000 to benefit Alex’s Lemonade Stand. Thanks so much to all who took the time to help.
On March 26 over 40 members of the Great Sun Nation descended upon the brand new Ball Park of the Palm Beaches to watch the Nationals take on the Astros. The ballpark was a fantastic site and the facilities top notch. We have beautiful weather with a cooling breeze and $6 craftbrews! We sat on the right field berm. The younger kids were much more fascinated with rolling down the hill then the actual baseball game. Lenny made the best catch of the game – pushing away a couple of kids to catch the t-shirt being thrown by the mascot. A great time was had by all. Next year we should have 100 people out to the game.
On January 13-15 over 250 members of the Great Sun Nation descended on Circle F Dude Ranch in Lake Wales, FL for our biggest campout. On Friday when everyone arrived, they were greeted by their new flags with their tribe name on it. No question which cabin you were at. Friday nights’ main activity was a talent show. The kids really showed us what they had and we might even have a few stars in the making. Saturday was filled with activities. The Arawaks set the pace winning the Egg Toss competition, and not to be out done, the Chesapeakes won the Chili cook off. There were many activities ranging from tug-o-war, saxophone fill, trinkets in the hay, rock wall and zip line, and the ever popular BB Gun and Archery range. The evening was capped of with the Bear Claw ceremony for all our first time children and their fathers, followed up by a fire ceremony and firework extravaganza put on the Walla Wallas. The weather was perfect and everyone had a great time.