Young Friends Midwinter Retreat 2022

Don't postpone joy
February 19, 2022 - February 21, 2022
10:00 a.m. Saturday to 1:00 p.m. Monday


Woolman Hill Retreat Center
107 Keets Road
Deerfield, MA 01342
United States

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NOTE: This retreat has been postponed from its original weekend, January 15-17, and moved to its current weekend, February 19-21, due to the risk of transmission of Covid being too high at this time. Capacity is currently full and those who wish to attend should email Maggie to be placed on the waitlist. Those already registered for the retreat do not need to re-register. Those who can no longer attend should cancel ASAP by emailing Maggie.

The Young Friends Midwinter Retreat is an annual opportunity for high schoolers in New England to take a deeper dive into building community and exploring the Quaker way together. This retreat will be an overnight weekend retreat held at Woolman Hill, New England's Quaker retreat center in Deerfield, MA. We'll gather together *on Saturday morning* (not Friday night as we have in previous years) and stay until lunchtime on Monday.

DON'T POSTPONE JOY is the theme of this retreat! Probably every one of us has had something we love postponed or cancelled or taken away during the pandemic. Sometimes it can be tough to remember to feel joy when there is still so much to worry about, but it's really important to seek it out anyway. After two years without in person overnight retreats, we'll explore how Spirit flows through each of us and amongst all of us in the form of joy when we're together. We'll move our bodies, sing, create, worship, eat, and play joyfully. We'll learn about what early Quakers had to say about joy (a lot). We'll learn about ways to cultivate joy in our lives, and share about what makes us feel alive and what gets in the way of our joy. Don't feel that joyful these days? That's ok. This retreat welcomes you if you just want to dip your toe into this theme, or if you wanna cannonball into it. Newcomers are extra welcome!

Updated Covid Safety Plan to prevent the spread of the new variant, Omicron:

  • All participants, including Young Friends and staff, must be vaccinated in order to attend. Those eligible for a vaccine booster should get one before the retreat if at all possible.

  • All youth and staff will receive an antigen test and symptom check upon arrival and will be sent home if they receive a positive test or are experiencing Covid-19 symptoms.

  • All youth and staff are encouraged to test before leaving home, especially if driving a long distance or carpooling with others.

  • We will use universal masking indoors, with the exception of eating, brushing teeth, showering, and when in bedrooms.

  • We'll spread out to eat and always use consent when entering someone's personal bubble.

  • Roommates will be assigned by "germ pod" (i.e. siblings or friends from home) wherever possible, taking into account the roommate preferences YFs list upon registering.

Capacity is now full, and updates on space becoming available will be posted here before February 2nd. If you already registered for the original weekend this retreat was scheduled for, your registration will carry over to the new date and you do not need to register again. If you registered for the original date and you cannot make it to the new date, contact Maggie to cancel your registration ASAP in order to make space for other Young Friends who wish to attend. Should you need to cancel because of the postponement of the retreat, or if you're sick, if you have had a Covid exposure, if you no longer feel comfortable coming due to Covid, or if the retreat needs to be cancelled, you will receive a full refund.

In addition to registering here, each participant must complete an up-to-date health and permission form in order to attend. Download the form here and either email it to Maggie or bring it to the retreat. 

Delicious meals will be provided by our fabulous cook, Gini, with something for everyone according to the dietary needs you describe when you register. Each Young Friend will be assigned between 1 and 3 roommates, taking your preferences into consideration as best we can. Bathrooms and showers are single stall and gender neutral.

This retreat is 'pay-as-led', meaning families can pay what they are able on a scale from $0 to $225+. Families may pay online upon registration, or enter $0 and bring a check or cash to the retreat. Here are three suggested tiers:

  1. $100 covers some of the cost of one YF attending

  2. $175 covers the basic cost of one YF attending

  3. $225 covers the full cost of one YF attending as well as related costs for putting on this event


Teen Ministries Coordinator
Maggie Fiori