Make a Reservation!
Here are some helpful suggestions, and advice gleaned from our years of service. By following this guide, and answering many of the questions, you will help insure a smooth and meaningful program, that will accomplish what you desire. The secret is to work in a timely pace, and keep the staff at Saint Christopher informed. If at any time you have questions, please contact us. We want your program to be a success and are here to help.
1.) Why Are You Doing This Conference / Retreat / Program?
Generally conferences, retreats, and programs are intentional events, done deliberately to focus on issues and questions through discussion and dialog with others, in order to come back with a more defined sense of direction. They use the resource and power of shared experiences and can hopefully help focus the energy of a group, whether your purpose is to do planning, problem solving, team building, spiritual renewal, faith formation, or just to explore and tackle a shared topic of interest or concern. Generally they require a place and pace that is unhurried and conducive to meaningful discussion and work. The good news is that Saint Christopher is such a place. See, you are already learning the answer to one of the questions on your list.
2.) Who are your planning for? (i.e. Who do you want to come?)
Members of your group only?
Members of your group and their invited guests?
Member of other organizations (churches, boards, companies)?
Budget for a positive balance. (i.e. Always charge a little extra to cover those unexpected costs.) Our experience shows, it is often better to add a little extra charge to everyone, and provide scholarships for those in need, rather than reducing their costs.
TIP: People attend what they help to plan, so if you’re looking to reach a larger audience than just your established group, invite and involve others to assist in the planning. Don’t just invite them once all the planning is done!
3.) When will it be held?
Make certain to check calendars, schedules, and other events that could affect the attendance of your particular audience. Consider major holidays and events in your planning.
- Is a weekend or weekday schedule best?
- Does time of year matter?
- Consider the length that people will be able to be away from their jobs/families?
- Are you on a time table to accomplish or plan certain thing.
Check for availability by calling St. Christopher; and reserve your desired dates and spaces. Generally we suggest you project low in numbers; there is almost always extra space, and you don’t want to have to pay for unused spaces. (843)768-0429
What are your needs to plan a successful conference?
Come and visit our campus, and meet our staff. See the different types of facilities we have available, and let us help you plan for the ones which will best meet your needs. Consider what kind of spaces you are going to need, large group and or break out spaces. It will be important to know what your physical needs might be before trying to book your event so we know what to reserve for you.
Event Planning Time Table
6-12 Months Ahead
- Confirm space and reservation.
- Make certain deposit has been paid.
- Develop plans to market your event. You might want to publish and announce dates so people can schedule and hold the dates.
- The best marketing involves personal contact. If possible, have each member of your team plan to personally contact potential guests.
- Develop contingency plans for programs, just in case.
- Plan for transportation.
- Plan for health and safety concerns.
- Develop a budget and fee schedule.
- Develop a schedule for your event. Is it reasonable and flexible enough?
- Will there be any special policies or practices that guests need to be aware of?
3-4 Months Ahead
- Promote, Promote, Promote / Now is the time to get the applications and reservation forms both out and returned.
- Have your guests make a financial commitment to you at time of registration. We suggest at least 1/3 of the cost. This gets them to be serious about attending.
- Send a copy of any brochures to us at St. Christopher to keep us in the loop.
- Assign any special tasks to your other leaders, and staff. Make certain they have clear job expectations of what is needed and when.
- Re-check with St. Christopher to confirm all arrangements.
- Keep in touch with any problems, questions, etc.
1-2 Months Ahead
- Keep in touch with our staff so that last minute details can be taken care of well.
- A 30 day group packet of information will be mailed to you. Complete and return the packet no later than 14 days prior to your arrival. This information provides us with your final guest count