Stuff You Can Use for Your Weekly Meeting

August 28, 2011 — 28 Comments

I wanted to share a few things we’ve used at our Cru meeting that you might be able to use.


Opener Video

Here’s a video we show at the beginning of our meeting. It serves two purposes:

  1. It functions as a cue to sit down and be quiet (we show it most every week)
  2. It communicates a little about who we are and what we’re about

We just put it together last week, so I’d love any constructive criticism (especially on how to improve any wording to make it more powerful).

Update: There is blank space at the beginning to give everyone a chance to sit down. And outro music at the end to give time for the MC’s to come up with some backing music (the sound guy can fade it out as they start).

Fall 2011 – Cru Intro Text Video from Tim Casteel on Vimeo.

Shout out to our intern Michael Allen who did the bulk of the work! Michael is splitting his time doing 50% campus work and 50% video for us.


For those of you out there that know a thing or two about video editing, I would HIGHLY recommend buying the Motion app for the Mac (a steal at $50) and then using the amazing pre-made templates (where we got this video) at

It will enable you to make slick text based videos.


To download the hi-res video for use at your meeting, click here (I changed the end to a generic “college students” so it wouldn’t have anything Arkansas specific).



While cool, upbeat music may be #27 on the list of important things about a weekly meeting, it’s important nonetheless.

What’s the first thing students encounter when they come to your meeting? Your music that you’re playing before the meeting.

And what happens when they hear Newsboys or Rebecca St. James pumping out of your speakers? You immediately confirm their worst suspicions that you are cheezy and out of touch with their reality.


As much as I am not a big fan of hip hop, at the weekly meeting we tend to be hip hop heavy. I run the music at our regional winter conference and can conclusively say that hip hop makes a marked difference on the “vibe” of the crowd. It makes your meeting a party. Literally. People dance.


So here’s a playlist we’ve used this fall for our cookouts and Cru weekly meeting.

You’ll need Spotify to use it/listen to it. If you need an invite, leave a comment and I’ll send you one. It’s worth a little effort to

1) Not pay a dime for new music and

2) Not be left to the whims of your soundguy’s ipod.



For those of you who don’t have Spotify, here’s the playlist:

Phoenix – Lisztomania

Passion Pit – Sleepyhead

Trip Lee – The Invasion (Hero) Ft. Jai

Broken Bells – The Ghost Inside

Vampire Weekend – Giving Up The Gun

Lecrae – High Ft. Suzy Rock

Muse – Starlight

Vampire Weekend – A-Punk

Flame – Joyful Noise

Foster The People – Pumped Up Kicks

Vampire Weekend – Run

Lecrae – Walking On Water

Lecrae – 40 Deep Ft. Tedashii & Trip Lee

Phoenix – 1901

Cults – You Know What I Mean

Jason Derulo – Whatcha Say

Robyn – Dancing On My Own

The Shins – Sea Legs

Paper Route – Last Time

Jimmy Eat World – A Praise Chorus

Young the Giant – My Body

Matt & Kim – Daylight

White Rabbits – Percussion Gun

Shout Out Louds – Walls

Sleigh Bells – Rill Rill

Cults – Go Outside

Jónsi – Go Do

Peter Bjorn And John – Young Folks

Passion Pit – Moth’s Wings

Capital Cities – Safe and Sound

Death Cab for Cutie – You Are A Tourist

Jimmy Eat World – Pain

M.I.A. – Paper Planes

Tapes ‘n Tapes – Freak Out

Yeasayer – Madder Red

Broken Bells – The High Road

Rogue Wave – Good Morning (The Future)

Vampire Weekend – Horchata

Dashboard Confessional – Don’t Wait

The National – Bloodbuzz Ohio

Animal Collective – My Girls

The Dodos – Fools

Broken Bells – Vaporize

Scissor Sisters – Fire With Fire

Freelance Whales – Hannah

Ellie Goulding – Starry Eyed – Jakwob Remix

Grizzly Bear – Two Weeks

Empire Of The Sun – Walking On A Dream

Okkervil River – Lost Coastlines

Sufjan Stevens – I Walked


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  • Tim, thanks for posting some great ideas and resources! I haven’t ventured into Spotify yet, but I’d love an invitation!

    • Anonymous

      I emailed you one – let me know if it didn’t work.

  • I’ll take a Spotify invite. Why not? Thanks for the stuff. Love the intro vid.

    • Anonymous

      I emailed you one – let me know if it didn’t work.

  • Chris Warren

    Thanks for the link. i just started leading our weekly meeting this year. THe video seems great, something we miss at our weekly meeting is The Global Focus. I like how it hits on that. THe only minor critique is that there seems to be a bunch of dead space at the beginning and end?

    Plus Ilove the spotify link. I was using spotify for our “bumper” music selection last week. Thanks for the resources!

    • Anonymous

      Thanks Chris!
      I forgot to explain that dead space – I updated it above:
      “There is blank space at the beginning to give everyone a chance to sit down. And outro music at the end to give time for the MC’s to come up with some backing music (the sound guy can fade it out as they start)”

  • Dude, you’re so good at sharing. You must have “played well with others” as a kid. I was wondering the same thing as Chris, but I suppose you can fade out the music whenever you want to.

    Also, just based on reading your blog, my guess would be that you’d rank music higher than #27 on most important things at a weekly meeting list :). I appreciated that little apologetic too.

    • Anonymous

      Haha – you’re probably right. Music would probably be much higher on my list 🙂
      And honestly – along with videos, the only thing that I am pretty high control on with our meeting

      Thanks Jonathan!

  • Hi Tim, interested to see the playlist, but Spotify isn’t available here. Any other way you could share the list (even if it isn’t playable?)

    • timcasteel

      Joseph – where do you live? I added the playlist in the post.

    • Anonymous

      Joseph – where do you live? I added the playlist to the post.

      • Thanks! I live in New Zealand.

  • Mikejudy

    very very impressed with Michael Allen’s work!

  • Adammsmith88

    I am intern Working with CRU can i get an invite this is perfectly what I wanted to get together for our weekly meeting thanks so much!

    Adam <

  • Chris Warren

    Again, thanks so much Tim. I’ve been working on our weekly meeting for a few weeks now. I’d love to find some of the hip hop songs you guys use before and after meetings that give it a fun feel.

    I love the playlist you have (it looks like a Chris Warren workout playlist), but i’d love to find some good hip hop for our meetings (my hip hop doesn’t quite work – The Roots, MosDef, etc.). Again thanks for sharing!

  • I’d love the invite for Spotify. Thanks for sharing and great ideas for starting the meeting.

    • Anonymous

      Good News – You can now get on Spotify without an invite!

  • I’d love the invite for Spotify too. Thanks for all the helpful tips!

    • Anonymous

      Good News – You can now get on Spotify without an invite!

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  • Hey Tim, we love the opener video. We’d love to use it at our weekly meetings but with our different name up here in Canada it wouldn’t work quite as well for us. Any idea how hard it would be to switch up the “CRU 2011” to “P2C 2012”?

    • timcasteel

      Michael (our video intern) will work on it – we’ll send you a link!

    • Anonymous

      Michael (our video intern) will work on it. We’ll send you a link!

      • Wow, thanks Tim that would be fantastic!!

      • I would love that too! thanks so much for sharing your resources with us, Tim! (I love your website!)

        • Anonymous

          thanks for the kind words Irene!

    • Anonymous

      Here’s a link for Canada/P2C!
      You can download it on that site