Want to produce a cheap version of the wipeout sweeper for your youth ministry? This is how it can be done.
THE YOUTH MINISTRY SWEEPER
A sweeper can be built on the cheap and makes for an epic game. Days have been spent trying to think of a way to mechanically move a sweeper arm using things like a bicycle hooked up to a chain pulley system etc but eventually, it was realised that the best way to do this in a youth ministry setting is good old man power. Grab a few boy leaders in the middle to push the sweeper around in circles while the contestants jump for Jesus. By using man power you can slow down or speed up easily making it safer or more epic if needed.
Create your sweeper using mattresses, milk crates, wood & camping mats. The more contestants you want in the game the bigger the sweeper will need to be.
Pad the sweeper arm with camping mats at the ends that connect with the contestant’s legs. Do three or four layers of padding so it is super soft. This needs to be safe.
Build a vertical pole that the sweeper arm can sit on. This will need to be fixed to a mounting box or something to keep it upright. Put different holes through the vertical pole so that the sweeper arm can sit at different heights for different rounds. Put a small but solid metal rod through one of the holes on the vertical pole and then sit the sweeper arm on top of that metal rod. The metal rod should stop the arm from dropping any lower, but should still allow the sweeper arm to rotate freely when pushed by your leaders.
For the podiums that the contestants stand on you can use 8 x milk crates in a 4×2 configuration. Tape a lot of camping mats on top of each milk crate podium to help make it soft then put cardboard over the top of the mats to make it a bit more solid. When putting padding on the podiums the main thing you need to do is make sure that the edges and corners of each podium is extremely padded so that a teen doesn’t get flipped by the sweeper and then land on the edge of a podium and hurt their back. the softer the better. Be safe & have fun!