Catalyst 08 – General Takeaways/Opening

Day 1: Was incredible! We go there in the rain in hopes of free stuff. That was quickly shattered as they had to open the doors early to keep people from getting wet. The openeing ceremony is usually a massive thing and this year was no exception. They had planned for the War Eagle (yes, you Auburn fans know what I am talking about) to literally swoop down and open the doors! That would’ve been sweet. 

On to the free stuff! This year was insane with free stuff as usual. Let’s see:

  • “It” by Craig Groeschel
  • “Tribes” by Seth Godin
  • 2 free shirts
  • rice bowls
  • 6 free copies of Safe Eyes, each with 3 licenses for a full year! ($50 each, $900 total value! Holy Crap!)
  • Free Hackey Sacks
  • and tons of resources!

The free stuff was amazing! I’ve been looking for something that my interns could use instead of x3watch because it isn’t that accurate. I’ll let you know what I think of this.

The opening was incredible (i’ll post pics soon). When we walked into the Gwinnett Arena there were 5 dj’s all mixing old school and digitally TOGETHER. Ya, the talent was amazing. I love remixes and the fact that 5 did this together is a great feat. Then I looked around to see the lighting fixtures, etc. However, I noticed a random circular thing in the middle of the stage. Only to find out it was a 360 degree screen! How stinkin cool is that!? As the lights turned down a computer/Stomp rhythm occurred. The only lights were white beams shooting everywhere and looked amazing!

Then there was a together video that captured the essence of the conference. (I’d love to post it here and use it with my students, hint hint Chad). As the video finished a character with a train station manager hat came on the stage and pulled out the white gloves from his bag. So, being the sheep that we are, we did the same. The effect was so cool as 12,000 hands swayed TOGETHER with a soft black light illuminating them all. While he was doing this, the person started to step and then the whole stage was filled with step dancers. These guys were perfect, I mean perfectly in sync. The sound created by those slapping hands and stomping feet was deafing. 

After the amazing step show, Steve Fee emerged to begin with a slow version of “We Shine,” the song that last year, changed the way I worship. Below is a video of Brad Lomenick watching the intro. I hope you enjoy. Come back tomorrow because I can’t wait to tell you what I learned from Andy Stanley.

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