General Synod 2017 Special Events

Register and pay for special events by clicking HERE.

Tour of Historic Annapolis

Join a tour of historic Annapolis, Maryland. The day's program begins with a 2 hour and 15 minute walking tour through four centuries of Annapolis, including the country's oldest state capital, the Old Senate Chamber where George Washington resigned his commission, and a tour of the U.S. Naval Academy. Included is a discussion of Annapolis' own link to the Amistad. You are then afforded the opportunity for lunch from many of Annapolis' downtown restaurants. After lunch, you may explore downtown Annapolis, including historic St. John's College, the Banneker-Douglass Museum of African-American History and Culture, and the Chesapeake Bay Foundation schooner. Please dress comfortably as there is much movement around the city for this tour!

Date: June 29, 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Cost: Adults: $37.50; Children (3-11): $31.50

Tours of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU)

Travel to Morgan State University, Coppin State University and Bowie State University for tours of these historic colleges.

Bowie State University

Bowie State University, founded January 1865, is a public university located on 355½ acres in unincorporated Prince George's County, Maryland, United States. Bowie State is part of the University System of Maryland. Bowie State is Maryland's oldest historically black university and one of the ten oldest in the country. Bowie State has 4,315 undergraduates.

Morgan State University

Morgan State University, founded 1867, is a public research university and historically black college in Baltimore, Maryland, United States. Morgan is Maryland's designated public urban university and the largest HBCU in Maryland. In 1890 the university, formerly known as the "Centenary Biblical Institute", changed its name to Morgan College to honor Reverend Lyttleton Morgan, the first chairman of its Board of Trustees who had donated land to the college. It became a university in 1975 and has 6,319 undergraduates.

Coppin State University

Coppin State University, founded 1909, is a historically black college located in Baltimore, Maryland. Coppin State University was founded in 1900 at what was then called Colored High School (later named Douglass High School) on Pennsylvania Avenue by the Baltimore City School Board. It first had a one-year training course for the preparation of African-American elementary school teachers. By 1902, the training program was expanded to a two-year Normal Department within the high school. Seven years later it was separated from the high school and given its own principal. In 1926, this facility for teacher training was named Fanny Jackson Coppin Normal School in honor of an African-American woman who was a pioneer in teacher education, Fanny Jackson Coppin. The University has 2,668 undergraduates.

Date: June 29, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Cost: $40

Baltimore: Before and After Freddie Gray

When Freddie Gray died April 19, 2015, and riots erupted, Baltimore and many systemic issues related to racism and poverty came under a national spotlight. During this 2 1/2 hour program, you will hear Baltimore leaders provide an honest and compelling picture of the circumstances that caused Freddie Gray’s death and served as a tipping point in a long simmering situation. Some of the issues to be discussed include:

1. The history of institutional racism in Baltimore and the discriminatory practices that affect the city to this day.

2. How the self-interests of the city’s political/business bedfellows perpetuate a negative impact on Baltimore’s predominant citizenry (people of color and the poor).

3. The culture of policing and public safety in Baltimore, and the generations of mistrust between the police and the community.

4. As a case study in urban unrest, what needs to happen in Baltimore and other urban centers.

Date: June 29, 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Cost: $25

Lancaster Theological Seminary: Explore, Experience, Engage

You're invited to explore Lancaster Theological Seminary's beautiful historic campus, experience the innovative programs that are forming the future leaders of the Church, engage with our renowned faculty who will lead sessions on Knowing God, Social Justice, and Reformed Traditions, and enjoy our famous farm-to-table cuisine at lunch in the 100-year-old Tudor-style refectory. Your afternoon in this center of learning, among a welcoming, inclusive community of students, scholars and theological leaders, also includes the opportunity to spend time together in prayer in a sacred setting.

This delightful excursion includes roundtrip travel on a comfortable motor coach through the verdant countryside plus learning and lunch at the Seminary. Dinner at a distinctive local restaurant is extra.

Date: June 29, 8:30 a.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Cost: $60

Tour of Historic Philadelphia

Depart from Baltimore's Convention Center and travel to Historic Philadelphia where you will tour before lunch Old First Reformed UCC, the Quaker Meeting House, and Christ Church. Lunch will be on your own at The Bourse Building. Following lunch you will tour Independence Hall and enjoy several hours on your own to explore. Dinner will be at the City Tavern Restaurant after which you will return to Baltimore.

Date: July 5, 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Cost: $74 (bus and dinner; lunch costs separate)

Visit to Washington D.C. to the National Museum of African American History and Culture and the Martin Luther King Memorial

Leave Baltimore Convention Center at 8:00 a.m. and travel to Washington, DC and the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial, arriving by 9:30 a.m. Photos and self-guided tour of the Memorial for 30 minutes. Board the bus and travel a short distance to the National Museum of African American History and Culture for self-paced tour. A timed pass is required to enter the NMAAHC (the passes for this trip are for all day starting at 10 am). The following Smithsonian Museums are in walking distance of the NMAAHC: American History, Natural History, African Art and Sackler Gallery. Other nearby museums: Air and Space, Native American and Hirshhorn.

There is no entrance fee for any of the 10 Smithsonian Museums on the Mall. Smithsonian Museums have cafeterias where lunch can be purchased. Food trucks are also available from which to purchase food. The bus will depart the NMAAHC site at 5:30 PM for the return trip to the Baltimore Convention Center by 7 PM.

Date: July 5, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Cost: $30