We will be offering more retreats in the Fall and Winter.
We have been separated at home doing the same thing day after day after day. It is time to reconnect with others and with nature. It’s time to exhale and feel refreshed as we fully embrace spring and prepare for summer. Yes, the pandemic is still here, but as more of us get vaccinated, the weather warms, and we find safe spaces to be together, there is hope for some special time away from home!
This all-inclusive weekend is ideal for women who value both togetherness and quiet. You will have an opportunity to connect with others as much as or as little as you prefer. Workshops will be offered throughout the weekend. The extensive grounds of the Bon Secours Retreat Center are open for you to explore alone or with others. The newly renovated, private rooms are fully stocked with everything you need. Rooms are even TV-free, so you can take a break from screens. Everything is included, so there is no need for you to cook or clean; meals are prepared daily and include a wide variety of fresh options. Various diets can be accommodated.
Things to Bring: - comfy clothes and shoes; layers for all different weather experiences - journal for writing and reflecting - face mask(s) and hand sanitizer - reusable water bottles (water refill stations are in every meeting room)/travel mug - foldable camping chair for outdoor gatherings (some attendees will bring extras for anyone who doesn't have their own)
Optional Items: - a book to swap (bring a book & take a book) - drum or noise maker - craft items to use and share with others - a bottle of wine to share during dinner - yoga mat, blocks, beach towel, meditation cushion, cozy blanket - sunscreen and bug spray - floppy hat or baseball cap (it's gonna be sunny/hot!)
Here’s a preliminary look at our schedule and “menu” of workshops. Remember: everything is optional; you can do as much or as little as you desire. You can participate in every gathering or spend most of your time alone in nature.
Friday- May 21, 2021 3:00pm-5:30pm: Check-in and individual time to rest and explore *self-guided use of the walking labyrinth and the peace garden
5:30pm: Dinner and meet & greet
7-8pm: Evening Gathering Sharing Intentions and Grounding in Place
8-9pm: Sunset walk and meditation
Saturday- May 22, 2021 7am: sunrise yoga
9:30am: Post-breakfast independent time (knitting/chatting in the rocking chair room, main room hangout, wander the grounds, shower, etc)
Disclaimers: Location: The serenity of these 313 acres of woodland and farmland rests at the high point of a hilly setting in the Howard County countryside some 20 miles from Baltimore City. The spacious grounds are a haven for native wildlife. The labyrinth and peace garden support more reflective activities. We chose Bon Secours because of its integration in nature, newly renovated facilities, affordability, and convenience for us in Howard County. Please note that Bon Secours was founded by a Catholic sisterhood and is still run by the Catholic Church so Christian elements will be on display. Crosses can be removed from rooms by guests as desired. Bon Secours follows the same tenet as OMO: ALL ARE WELCOME; they host non-religious groups like ours as well as groups from other religions.
Cicadas: It is forecasted that cicadas may be prevalent during this time, we will adjust our activities accordingly.
Cost: $400 single occupancy (double occupancy rates also available) Note: This price covers the room and board cost and offsets the expenses of volunteer workshop presenters and the OMO admin team.
Safety Expectations Bon Secours Retreat Center is committed to providing every guest with the peace of mind to relax and enjoy their time. You will be welcomed by staff who have been fully trained on the importance of upholding the highest level of sanitation standards and the sensitivity of the current circumstance which we are in.
The Bon Secours team has diligently implemented safety precautions recommended by the CDC and in accordance with state, and county guidelines. Staff members reporting for work are symptom free. If they know that they have been exposed to COVID-19, they have quarantined at home for the proper time before reporting to work.
When we arrive:
The expectation is that all guests entering our Center are healthy. If you have a fever, cough, respiratory illness, shortness of breath, loss of taste/smell or think you have been exposed to the Coronavirus, please postpone your visit until you have been symptom-free for 14 days.
Face masks must be worn to enter the building and at all times throughout our Center.
No-contact temperature checks will be administered by our staff upon entrance to the building and guests will be required to sign a wellness document.
At this time, entrance to our Center is limited to the main front doors only. However, you may leave the building using any exit door within the Center.
Upon arrival, members of our group will be issued key cards and will also be given meal ticket/ID badges and are asked to wear their meal ticket/ID badges during their stay to identify them as guests of the Center.
During our stay:
Cleanliness: The Housekeeping Staff has been trained with new protocols and will deep clean all areas of the Center regularly, using updated disinfecting standards and sanitizing supplies as recommended by the CDC. Hi-touch points and restrooms will be cleaned several times each day. Hand sanitizing stations are available throughout the building.
Outdoors: please maintain social distancing guidelines. Although it is not necessary to wear a mask when you’re outdoors, if you come into contact with someone please put your mask on to converse. Also, it is mandatory that you put your mask on before you enter the building.
Indoors: It is required that you wear your mask when you are in all common areas and meeting rooms. Please maintain social distance from other guests and our staff as well.
Dining: You will need to wear your mask to get your food and while moving around the dining room. Our dining services staff, who are taking extra safety and cleanliness measures, will serve your food from the buffet area. Dining spaces will be marked that adhere to social distancing and when you have finished your meal, you will leave your dishes on the table so that our staff can clean properly.
Guests who refuse to comply with our standards will be asked to leave. This is to ensure the safety of everyone and we hope to never have to ask to do this.
70 guest rooms, all with queen-size beds, private baths, linen and towel service and free Wi-Fi
Guests frequently comment about the superb cleanliness of our lodging rooms and comfort of our beds and linens
A host of other amenities, including a fitness center and outdoor swimming pool
Delicious Dining The professional food and beverage staff will help you refuel with a delicious selection of choices, prepared fresh each day in the Bon Secours kitchen.
Meals are served daily in our two bright and welcoming communal dining rooms
Dining room capacity is limited due to Covid precautions so everyone will be assigned a dining room
Light refreshments are available throughout the day in hospitality lounges located on each floor of the Center (coffee, tea, water and a bowl of fresh fruit)
OMO provided Bon Secours a list of those attendees reporting allergies/restrictions
In order to guarantee a positive dining experience, those guests who have special dietary requests or needs (allergies, restrictions, etc.) are asked to speak to a supervisor in the Food and Beverage Department upon arrival.
Those guests who require a very restricted diet (gluten free, organic, vegan, etc.) are welcome to bring some of their own food items to supplement what the Center provides. Refrigerators and microwaves are available for guest use.
Vegetarian options are available upon request (at each meal time).
Check-in time is 3:00 p.m. Please report any problems you may encounter concerning your room immediately to the Welcome Center. Check out time is 11:00 a.m.; key cards are to be returned to the Welcome Center. Luggage may be stored in designated closets on each floor if guests are staying in the building past checkout.
Guests are to park in the Visitor’s parking lot, not in the Staff/Handicapped Lot (unless vehicle displays handicapped license plate or rear view mirror hanger) or in the lot located by the Stone House as this is private property
Guests may unload luggage in the circle in front of the building, but then must move their vehicle to the Visitor’s Lot
Soap and linens and a hair dryer are provided as well as an extra blanket and pillow in each room. Forget something? Please check with our Welcome Center Staff where a small supply of necessities are kept
In consideration of guests who come to the Center for reflection, quiet, and a time away from their hectic daily lives, we have designated our Center as an adult environment (no children under age 18). There at times might be children on the premises, especially in the pool area, but never as overnight guests. Pets are prohibited, except for service animals for the handicapped.
All outside doors are locked 24/7, except for the Lobby, which is locked at 8:00 p.m. each evening (guests can access the Lobby, but not the building) - a receptionist is on duty until 9:30 p.m. Guests who expect to return to the Center after 9:30 p.m. should alert the Welcome Center Staff and a message will be left for the Guard. Please note that if you exit the building from any door, except the front door, the door will lock behind you. Doors are not to be propped open as this is a security breach and also allows “critters” access to the building.
Please be considerate when using cell phones in the building and do not use cell phones in the hallways by the Center’s business offices, in front of the Center or near the Pond, Labyrinth, or Peace Garden.
Return key cards and ID lanyards to the Front Office upon departure from the Center
Upon arrival at the Center all of your concerns and/or requests will be handled by Rose Kurtz, Manager of Guest Services or the Welcome Center Staff. I am also usually here so please stop by and introduce yourself. The Welcome Center is staffed from 7:00 a.m. until 9:30 p.m. seven days a week; the emergency number outside those hours is 443.398.1525, which you may wish to pass along to your family.