1. Is the Retreat House a good place to go for focused contemplation/meditation/prayer?
Yes, that is the purpose of the Retreat House. On a typical week, the Retreat House has silent hours from 9pm each evening to 11am each morning. The downstairs meditation/contemplation room is always silent except when a group activity is held in that room. A private room is helpful if you want seclusion. There are also several places you can go to be outside in nature and away from people. We can loan you a chair with a shoulder strap to use outdoors. Sometimes we offer weeks with extended silent hours. Watch our calendar for “silent week,” which denotes a week when the house is fully silent.
2. Is the Retreat House for people of a specific religion or spiritual belief system?
Everyone is welcome at the Retreat House for the purpose of spiritual retreat. The Retreat House is not a place to stay while on family vacation, a hunting trip, etcetera. It is only for spiritual retreat. The Retreat House is operated by Awakening Together. You can learn about Awakening Together’s spiritual/religious values at this link. You can learn about the guidance that led us to open a retreat house at this link.
3. What should I pack for a visit to the Retreat House?
Here are some things we recommend:
~ Water bottle and spill proof coffee cup
~ Lotion, chapstick, sunscreen, sun glasses, sun hat
~ Layered clothing that is appropriate for the season
~ Warm non-slip/non-skid socks (Shoes are not permitted in the retreat house)
~ Robe, cardigan or shawl
~ Good weather-appropriate walking shoes
~ Small backpack if you plan to hike
~ Protein bars
~ Earbuds or earphones
~ If desired, spiritual book(s), notebook, pen, highlighter
4. Are coffee and tea provided at the Retreat House?
Coffee is available until 9:30am each morning. If you get up before coffee is made, feel free to make coffee using the Keurig. We provide K-cups each morning until breakfast begins. During breakfast, coffee is provided in the coffee pot. After 9:30am, you may use the Keurig to make coffee with your own K-cups. You can bring K-cups with you or purchase them at Charlie’s Market on Main Street.
A variety of hot teas are available to our guests throughout the day.
5. Is there wifi available at the Retreat House?
Yes, we have wifi available at the Retreat House. You may find that the wifi speeds are less than you are accustomed to, especially if you live in a large metropolitan area. While listening to audio, please use earbuds or headphones so you don’t disturb others. Thank you.
6. Is there cell service at the Retreat House?
Cell service can be spotty at the Retreat House. AT&T cell service is best. Also, in order to create a quiet environment, we have guidelines for telephone use.
- Please leave your telephone on silent at all times.
- Please do not talk on the telephone during silent hours.
- Please make telephone calls from the privacy of your room or outside the Retreat House and away from others.
- When talking on the telephone, please keep your voice low so you don’t disturb others.
7. Will someone pick me up at the airport?
Unfortunately, we do not have enough staff to run a shuttle to the airport. Car rentals are available at the airports. If you would like to share a rental car with someone else, feel free to make a post on the Awakening Together “Share a Ride” Forum. We recommend putting the dates of your trip and the airport on the post Title line. If you are flexible, put that on your Title line. Here are example titles:
Share rental car from Colorado Springs, 7/5/19-7/14/19
Share rental car from Denver or Colorado Springs, 7/5/19-7/14/19
Share rental car from Denver anytime in early to mid July 2019
Driving from Chicago in July 2019. Willing to Take Passengers.
8. Are meals included in my lodging price?
We provide some meals freely for overnight guests. We provide breakfast each morning from 7:30-9:30am. We provide dinner on Saturday through Wednesday. Typically, dinner is served at 6pm. On Sundays we eat an early dinner at 4pm with dessert at 8pm. We also provide a guest refrigerator and pantry so you can store the food you need for snacks and other meals.
9. Will you provide meals for my special diet?
We can accommodate lacto-ovo vegetarian and gluten free diets. When you apply to stay at the Retreat House, the application will ask you to select a specific diet for your stay. Our Retreat House caretaker will plan a menu based on those meal selections. We cannot fully provide for a vegan diet, although some vegan foods may be part of the meal. If you have a food allergy that we cannot accommodate, we will let you know.
St. Francis recommended that people eat whatever is served when they are traveling. We will try to make meals that are pleasing to everyone based on meal selections, but it isn’t possible to meet every individual preference. We hope you will meet us halfway by accepting St. Francis’ advice while you are here.
10. Is there a place nearby where I can buy food?
Charlie’s Market is a well stocked small market 1/2 mile from the retreat house. There are also two grocery stores in Walsenburg, which is 15 miles away.
11. Can I cook my own meals while there?
There is a microwave available for everyone’s use. If you want to use the stove or oven, please ask the Retreat House caretaker for permission. Simple cooking is usually not a problem as long as it doesn’t get in the way of the caretaker’s meal preparations. Some requests to cook may not be approved. Please keep in mind that the caretaker needs to take everyone’s needs into account when making decisions about use of the kitchen. If you use the kitchen to cook, please wash your dishes and wipe the counters when you are done.
12. Are there restaurants nearby?
Yes, and several are within easy walking distance. Here is a list of local restaurants.
During your stay at the Retreat House, ask the Retreat House Caretaker for advice about which restaurant to go on which day. Several local restaurants are only open a few days a week.
13. If the Retreat House is full, where can I stay?
Here are a few recommendations. Each one is less than a mile from the retreat house:
1899 Inn B&B – Seasonal
Lucy’s RV Park – Seasonal
Circle the Wagons RV Park – Seasonal
Oak Street House: Call Jill, 719-890-4228
14. If I am not staying at the Retreat House, is there a cost for using it during the day?
We request a donation of $25 per day to use the Retreat House if you are not lodging with us. As a day rate guest, you have access to all of the amenities that are available to our lodging guests, except for a lodging room. Breakfast is provided daily and dinner is provided Sunday through Wednesday. If you choose to dine with us, advance notice is required so we can purchase and provide the right amount of food.
If you are attending a retreat event at the retreat house, paying the day rate is optional. The retreat rate includes lunch each day and use of any Retreat House amenities that are part of the retreat event. The retreat rate does not include breakfast or dinner, which is served to our lodging and day rate guests only.
15. Can I volunteer at the Retreat House and stay for free?
Sometimes volunteers are needed, especially for larger retreats. When we need volunteers to help with a retreat or specific project, we provide a link along with the retreat/project description so you can apply for a volunteer scholarship.
16. Are scholarships available?
Limited reduced rate scholarships are available for Awakening Together members who need them. Click here for more information.
17. Are there things to do in La Veta?
Yes. We put links about things to do on our website at About the Local Area. While you are at the Retreat House, be sure to check the activity board to see if there are any special activities offered during your stay. The activity board is located in the dining room. Also, check out these La Veta Facebook pages:
18. Can I donate some things to the Retreat House?
Please contact us about any items you have to donate. We are happy to accept things we need if they are in new, like-new or very good condition. Since we do not have a storage facility, we can not accept donations if we do not have an immediate need for the item. Monetary donations are always helpful. To learn how we use monetary donations, see the envisioned amenities at the bottom of the amenities webpage. Donate here.
19. May I bring my dog/cat?
Pets are not permitted at the Awakening Together Retreat House.
20. Is it okay if I bring a bottle of wine?
Alcohol, including beer and wine, is not permitted at the retreat house. Most of the restaurants in town serve alcohol if you’d like to have a drink while you are here. Be aware that intoxication is never permitted at the retreat house. If someone returns to the retreat house intoxicated, he/she will be asked to leave immediately.
21. May I smoke cigarettes at the retreat house?
Smoking is not allowed in or near the retreat house, near bushes or near dry grass. If you must smoke, you may smoke at the end of the driveway as long as there isn’t a fire ban in effect in La Veta. When a fire ban is in effect, smoking is not allowed outdoors anywhere in the county.
Note: Wildfires start much more easily in Colorado than in most other locations, often from one small spark, and once a fire starts, it can burn thousands of acres before it is under control. If you must smoke, you need to be extremely cautious. Proper disposal of cigarette ashes and cigarette butts is essential. See the retreat house caretaker for a proper container.
22. Is it okay if I smoke marijuana at the retreat house?
Although recreational marijuana is legal in Colorado, it is not permitted at the retreat house. No recreational drugs are permitted at the retreat house.