Younglife | Fall Retreat
* Shepherd’s Fold Ranch, on of the Best Retreat Centers in Oklahoma, has the privilege of hosting the Younglife leaders from Norman, Oklahoma while they plan and grow as a team.
Younglife in Norman is led by the famous Scott Henigan (who is an SFR alumni) and we are honored to be the place they host their kickoff for new leaders and programming vision. Scott was the Program Director out here at Shepherd’s Fold back in the early nineties and left his legacy in the form of walk on skits, amazing games and the addition of music into daily programming. Top notch programming is a trademark of Younglife and they set the standard of immersive experiences for summer camps and retreat centers. As a retreat, Younglife takes advantage of our commercial grade kitchen and manages their own schedule, food and programming. For groups equipped with the right people this can be a more budget conscience option because you do not have to pay for the kitchen staff.
ScheduleFRIDAY: 5:00 Meet at the Norman High Parking Lot (Eastside) 5:30 Depart for Weekend 9:00 Arrive 9:30 Welcome/ Mixer/ Walk-on / Worship/ Talk 10:45 Night Activity: Dollar Dice 11:30 Free Time 12:30 Bed SATURDAY: 9:00 Breakfast 9:30 Team Time 11:00 Walk-on / Worship / Talk 11:45 Head to Cabins to Change 12:00 Bellagio Water Battle 1:00 Lunch 4:30 Team Time 6:30 Dinner 7:30 Walk-on / Worship / Foot Washing / Worship / Talk 10:00 Casino Night in the Eagle’s Nest Bed SUNDAY: 9:00 Breakfast in Bed 9:30 Meet in front of cabins for Prayer Walk 11:45 Worship / Communion / Group Picture 12:30 Lunch 1:00 Pack-up & Depart Free Time (Pool, Pond, Frisbee Golf, Etc.)
So their schedule consists of lots of activities and lots of of relational time. One of the important aspects to evaluate when looking at this schedule is the flow of activities in relationship to time allotted. It is important to remember “people moving time” when you have events in different locations. I.E. There is 15 minutes on Saturday for people to walk between the cabins and the activities between each event. A good leader needs to allow the space and time for transitions in their schedule otherwise they will feel like everything is behind schedule throughout the retreat. Another interesting point on this schedule is the late meal times. Recognizing these are college students it is important to consider who are your retreaters. With older guests I would suggest planning meals earlier and ensuring there is a coffee pot brewing at 6am, and with younger guests pushing back meal times is a great way to ensure that they are happy campers.
As a retreat center we did not provide much in regards to group programming. We offered our group hosts if they needed any assistance setting up or tearing down any activities and provided them with the audio equipment to set up in their meeting room. Other than that they did their Younglife specialty and managed their own programming. Their programming is fantastic as I had said earlier in this article. I look to Younglife resources for new ideas, and fun creative ways to get kids engaged in activities. If you ever need to tap in to their resources there are numerous websites about camp games and ice breakers.
The SFR Effect
As always we try and evaluate what the “SFR Effect” was for groups that stay with us. After connecting with the leaders of the retreat they gave high marks to the facility development we have made over the past couple of years. Scott (a former staffer) said, “Shepherd’s Fold has never looked better, that I can remember.” With only being a facility rental for the weekend we are proud that the SFR effect can be the improvements and care we take of our place called home. We are constantly working on our property and there are some HUGE developments in the pipeline, so keep following us to stay in the loop with what is happening at the Fold.
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