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New Show Focuses on Amish Teens Nightclubbing, Sunbathing and...Using Technology

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"Amish in the City"

Back on 2004, there was "Amish in the City," a UPN show highlighting what it was like for young Amish folk to leave their rural surroundings and venture into urban life. Now, National Geographic has "Amish on Break," a slightly more educational experience that documents five Amish teenagers' expedition to London, where they experience technology and big city life for the first time.

Here's the network's official description of the show:

Amish teenagers leave their sheltered community for the first time to spend four weeks abroad in the United Kingdom. It's a trip full of firsts — first time on an airplane, first visit to the ocean and first nightclub. We'll see how they react to the seedy streets of London, street performers and the hedonistic lifestyle of an indie rock band they befriend. We'll also see how their simple life clashes with that of the British upper classes.

You may be wondering how these youngsters are able to engage in these activities. Interestingly, the Amish have a tradition called "rumspringa," which very literally means "running around." When they turn 15, males and females are released into the world for a year (before they are officially baptized into the church at 16) so that they can be exposed to all of the things the Amish faith and way of life prevents them from engaging in.

While it seems counterintuitive, the tradition allows the youngsters to see the world and then decided whether they want to return to Amish life. Most, of course, return home. Mail Online has more about rumspringa:

This enables them to do things which are usually forbidden, such as wearing non-traditional clothing, using electricity, driving cars, watching television and even drinking and smoking with people from outside their community.

Below, watch a clip that shows some background:

And, here they are enjoying the beach:

(h/t Mail Online)

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