First the Name
"Hammonasset" means "where we dig holes in the ground." It alludes to the place where a settlement of eastern woodland Native Americans farmed along the Hammonasset River. For more fascinating historical facts, check out the Hammonasset Beach State Park homepage and the Friends of Hammonasset.
What about the event?
Hammonasset is also the premier, ok only, annual gathering of youth throughout the New England Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). More than three decades ago a small group of Lutheran churches in Connecticut decided to get together for a youth camping weekend. They repeated the campout in subsequent years, adding people and activities. From this modest beginning, the event we call Hammonasset has grown to include more than 60 church youth groups from all six New England states. Since that first gathering, the event has grown to include 800+ attendees, nationally-known speakers, great live bands, small group Bible study, and inspirational worship. Speakers and bands frequently comment that “no other synod does anything like Hammonasset.” Well, shucks...we try.