Q: How much does it cost?
A: Well, that depends on which registration option you choose! For a breakdown of the prices, please see the registration page. We have three registration options this year: camping, indoor, and work exchange. Camping registration is our standard conference registration. You’ll have full access to our workshops, events, meals, and all the rest. Please bring your tent, sleeping bag, and other camping supplies to make yourself comfortable in the campground adjoining our conference site. Indoor is a new offering this year. We realize that some folks would prefer a bed and a roof, and we have arranged for accommodations at Sophia House, a nearby retreat center. We will arrange a shuttle to transport people from Sophia House to the conference and back. And, of course, you’ll have full access to our workshops, events, meals, and all the rest. Work Exchange registration is for folks who would love to come to the conference and can contribute some sort of labor but can’t afford the full ticket price. Contact our work exchange coordinator at conference(at)twinoaks(dot)org to determine an appropriate work exchange or trade for your financial situation. We want you to be able to attend!
Q: How should I pay for my registration?
A: You can pay online through Eventbrite. We also accept checks. Please mail your check to us at Communities Conference, 138 Twin Oaks Road, Louisa VA 23093.
Q: Can I bring my kids?
A: OF COURSE! We would love to have you and your kids at the Conference–no matter what age they are. We have a kids’ play area and cooperative childcare; you’ll need to sign up for some shifts watching the children (don’t worry, it won’t be just you) and you’ll be taking care of your kids when there aren’t workshops. Children 5 and under can come for free. Children 6 to 13 receive a $60 discount. Put in the Promotional Code CHILDREN when registering to reveal the children’s ticket options.
Q: Can I come for just part of the weekend? Will I have to pay for the whole weekend?
A: Please let us know if you’d like to come for just part of the weekend. Though it is encouraged to come for the whole weekend to make the most out of the conference, we would love to have you for however long you can make it for. Contact us and let us know how long you’d like to come for and we’ll let you know how much we would ask you to pay.
Q: Why can’t I explore the Twin Oaks Community on my own? Isn’t this event being held at Twin Oaks?
A: Twin Oaks is a cool place. And the Conference is held on a portion of Twin Oaks’ land. Though there may be no fences specifically saying where you can or can’t go, we ask that you respect the Community and stay at the Conference site, or go to your vehicle on the path indicated for doing so. Wandering and exploring might not seem like it would have much impact, but this is 100 peoples’ home. Many are overwhelmed by having lots of guests during the summer and do not wish to interact with folks from the Conference unless they are at a specific Conference-related event. The dance party at the Twin Oaks dining hall on Saturday night is an exception for conferees to go into the Community. You can also take a tour at designated times; you’ll get to see more of the Community than just wandering around on your own this way, not to mention all the cool facts you’ll learn about Twin Oaks!
Q: If I’m paying, why must I do work shifts?
A: Our price stays low because of you. Your help in the Community that we create at the Conference each year makes the event possible, and keeps it affordable. It is also customary in many communities for everyone to pitch in. Though it is only for a weekend, the Community we create at the Conference is a strong one and connects us all when we contribute and lighten the load. (Plus, it makes the organizers’ lives a lot easier!)
Q: Why am I paying for food if I’m bringing snack foods to share?
A: There are many mouths to feed, and Twin Oaks Community provides all meals. But to help keep registration fees lower we ask participants to help out by providing the snacks.
Q: Why can’t I bring my pets?
A: Unfortunately, we cannot host pets unless they are service animals. Please try to find a place for your animals to stay while you are at the conference.
Q: Will I be able to shower?
A: We have showers, and they are often hot, but no guarantees! If you must have reliably hot showers, you have the option of staying at neighboring retreat center Sophia House or in the Aurora Visitor Cabin for an additional fee.
Q: Will I have access to my car?
A: Yes, our parking field is only a few minutes walk from the camping area. Those with special needs can talk to parking attendants/conference coordinators to park their vehicle closer to the conference site.
Q: I don’t have a car, or I’d rather carpool. Is there anyone else coming from ______________?
A: You can specify when you register if you are going to need or would be willing to give a ride to the conference. In the weeks leading up to the event, we will compile all of this information and send it out to everyone who said they need or could offer a ride.
Q: What kind of clothing, camping gear, etc. should I bring?
A: As far as clothing goes, August is generally a very warm time of the year here. You’ll need things you’ll feel comfortable in and things you don’t mind getting a little dirty (it’s camping, after all!). A hat might be nice, plus good sandals or sturdy shoes. Maybe some cool shades. Bring a poncho or rain jacket, as it has rained in previous years. As far as camping gear goes, you’ll want a tent and a sleeping bag. Anything else is your call. Our campsites generally hold pretty big tents, but keep in mind that it is just a weekend conference and a two-story tent with a living room and everything but the kitchen sink is likely unnecessary. Do bring at least one flashlight (and extra batteries, just in case).
Q: So. I’m at the Conference, and I forgot my toothbrush! Or something else important! Oh no!
A: You have several options. Leave a note or talk directly to a conference organizer and let them know what exactly you need. If we find out on Friday or Saturday before 9am, we can have something picked up in town for you, or we might have something in the Community to help you out. No need to worry.
Do you have a question that we didn’t address on this page? Please contact us at conference at twinoaks dot org.