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OAKHURST, CALIFORNIA

A Yosemite New Year's Celebration

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Road Scholar
Program #18331RJ
4 Days | 3 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Moderate
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.
Elevation Note
ECCO's elevation is 3,100 feet

Itinerary for Dec 29 — Jan 1, 2013

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Type: Conference Center

Description: Program begins with registration 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday. Please do not plan to arrive before 2:00 PM or later than 6:00 PM. (Sleeping rooms may not be available until 4:00 PM.) You are asked to check out of your sleeping rooms by 9:00 a.m. on Friday; however program ends after lunch.

Contact info:
43803 Highway 41
Oakhurst, CA 93644 USA
phone: 559-683-8162
web: www.conferencecenter.org

Room amenities: All rooms have private baths.

Facility amenities: In keeping with our tranquil retreat setting, you are not disturbed by the distraction of televisions or telephones in sleeping rooms. Satellite TV is available in the main lodge, as well as a recreation room with ping pong/game tables. Our "Fourth Green" Recreation Complex features fields for basketball, volleyball, football/soccer and horseshoes. Walking/hiking trails on-site and nearby, including a self-interpretive nature trail on ECCO grounds. The towns of Oakhurst, Bass Lake, North Fork and Mariposa feature a number of fine arts galleries and museums. Bass Lake offers swimming/boating opportunities 5 miles from ECCO.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Additional nights before:
Unfortunately we are unable to offer early arrivals or extended stayovers beyond the scope of our published program times.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day One: Saturday, December 29 - Arrival and get acquainted
Arrive To: We're delighted you've decided to join us. Please plan to arrive between 3 to 5 p.m. (Not earlier than 2 p.m., please, nor later than 6 p.m.--our staff is available to assist you during those hours only.)

Afternoon: Meet your fellow participants at a get-acquainted social hour beginning at 5 p.m.

Dinner: Dinner in Lyles Hall at 6:00 p.m. Dinner features a delicious main entrée of beef, chicken, fish or pasta, along with potatoes or rice, vegetables, salad bar, rolls and dessert. Please note that only one entree selection is served per meal. Dinner is served until 6:20 p.m. (We are unable to save plates for late arrivals.)

Evening: After dinner, we will have the remainder of our orientation session followed by introductions. The balance of the evening is left free for you to relax after your day's journey. Cards, games & puzzles are available for your enjoyment. Satellite television is accessible in our main dining hall, as is wireless internet. (Bring your own laptop.)

Lodging: Evergreen Conference Center, Oakhurst (ECCO)

Meals Included: Dinner
Type: Conference Center

Description: Program begins with registration 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday. Please do not plan to arrive before 2:00 PM or later than 6:00 PM. (Sleeping rooms may not be available until 4:00 PM.) You are asked to check out of your sleeping rooms by 9:00 a.m. on Friday; however program ends after lunch.

Contact info:
43803 Highway 41
Oakhurst, CA 93644 USA
phone: 559-683-8162
web: www.conferencecenter.org

Room amenities: All rooms have private baths.

Facility amenities: In keeping with our tranquil retreat setting, you are not disturbed by the distraction of televisions or telephones in sleeping rooms. Satellite TV is available in the main lodge, as well as a recreation room with ping pong/game tables. Our "Fourth Green" Recreation Complex features fields for basketball, volleyball, football/soccer and horseshoes. Walking/hiking trails on-site and nearby, including a self-interpretive nature trail on ECCO grounds. The towns of Oakhurst, Bass Lake, North Fork and Mariposa feature a number of fine arts galleries and museums. Bass Lake offers swimming/boating opportunities 5 miles from ECCO.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Additional nights before:
Unfortunately we are unable to offer early arrivals or extended stayovers beyond the scope of our published program times.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Two: Sunday, December 30 - From our expert instructor, who has lived and tau...
From our expert instructor, who has lived and taught in Yosemite and the Sierra Nevada for over two decades, gain insights into the forces that continue to shape Yosemite's changing landscape and the critters (including humans) who inhabit it.

Breakfast: 8:00 a.m. Breakfast in Lyles Dining Hall. An ECCO breakfast buffet may include French toast, waffles or pancakes accompanied by sausage or bacon. Standard items include eggs, hot/cold cereals, fruits, toast or muffins and yogurt.

Morning: Class - "A Rocky Start: An Introduction to Yosemite Geology"

Morning: After a short break, our instructor illustrates what she's taught with a nature walk on ECCO grounds. If you prefer, you may stay in the classroom to look over the reference materials provided. The walk, about 3/4 mile in length, is over level but somewhat uneven terrain. If mobility is an issue, please contact coordinator to discuss. For those who prefer not to walk, you'll have an opportunity to look over our selection of reference materials.

Lunch: Noon - Lunch in Lyles Hall. - Lunch may include a sandwich bar or a hot entrée. These may be offered with a homemade soup of the day and salad bar, along with a dessert.

Afternoon: Class continues with an overview of Yosemite/Sierra Nevada flora and fauna.

Afternoon: About 2;30PM - The rest of the afternoon is yours to explore the beauty of the Oakhurst/Bass Lake area. Our group leaders will be glad to help you make the most of your time. (Or we may plan an afternoon program for you, related to the subject matter you're studying.)

Afternoon: After a break, your group leaders discuss with you the plan for your field trip tomorrow: what weather to expect, what to wear, your lunch, transportation--all those pieces of information that will help you make the most of your time in Yosemite Valley.

Dinner: 6:00 p.m. Dinner in Lyles Hall. 6:00 p.m. Dinner in Lyles Hall. Dinner features a delicious main entrée of beef, chicken, fish or pasta, along with potatoes or rice, vegetables, salad bar, rolls and dessert.

Evening: After dinner you'll have the opportunity to enjoy an evening program. This may be a living history presentation, a chance to see live birds of prey up-close-and-personal or a video about Yosemite and the Sierra Nevada. Evening activities generally last until about 8:30 p.m. Games, cards and puzzles are available after that, or grab one of our plush clairs around the cozy woodstove and read.

Lodging: Evergreen Conference Center, Oakhurst (ECCO)

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Conference Center

Description: Program begins with registration 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday. Please do not plan to arrive before 2:00 PM or later than 6:00 PM. (Sleeping rooms may not be available until 4:00 PM.) You are asked to check out of your sleeping rooms by 9:00 a.m. on Friday; however program ends after lunch.

Contact info:
43803 Highway 41
Oakhurst, CA 93644 USA
phone: 559-683-8162
web: www.conferencecenter.org

Room amenities: All rooms have private baths.

Facility amenities: In keeping with our tranquil retreat setting, you are not disturbed by the distraction of televisions or telephones in sleeping rooms. Satellite TV is available in the main lodge, as well as a recreation room with ping pong/game tables. Our "Fourth Green" Recreation Complex features fields for basketball, volleyball, football/soccer and horseshoes. Walking/hiking trails on-site and nearby, including a self-interpretive nature trail on ECCO grounds. The towns of Oakhurst, Bass Lake, North Fork and Mariposa feature a number of fine arts galleries and museums. Bass Lake offers swimming/boating opportunities 5 miles from ECCO.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Additional nights before:
Unfortunately we are unable to offer early arrivals or extended stayovers beyond the scope of our published program times.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Three: Monday, December 31 - This is your special day to explore Yosemite Vall...
Breakfast: 7:00 a.m. (Note the time) - Breakfast in Lyles Hall. The early meal enables us to get a headstart on our travel to Yosemite Valley.

Morning: At 7:45 a.m. the bus loads. Departure is at 8:00 a.m. sharp (or earlier if everyone is on board). The bus is our classroom during our 1.5 hour drive to Yosemite Valley through the communities of Fish Camp and Wawona, past the private development of Yosemite West. View the magnificent Wawona Hotel and golf course en route. Marvel at the eye-popping vista of El Capitan, Clouds Rest, Half Dome and other features of the valley from world-famous Tunnel View. Trek the quarter-mile to the base of Bridalveil Falls then drive along the Merced River to Sentinel Bridge and Yosemite Chapel.

Lunch: Lunch at a special place in Yosemite Valley.

Afternoon: At the hour and place your group leader indicates, gather to board the bus for your return to ECCO.

Afternoon: After your return from Yosemite, get as dressed up as you wish (suggested: dressy pant suit or cocktail dress for ladies; suit or sport coat for gentlemen) for a special New Year's Eve celebration. Begin with a social hour to give you an opportunity to relive the day's adventures with your companions.

Afternoon: The afternoon is yours to explore the valley features you most want to see. Your group leaders will help you design your afternoon to take the greatest advantage of your available time.

Dinner: Enjoy a festive holiday dinner in our dining hall. After dinner dance to live or DJ music arranged just for you. Or you can visit, play games or relax. The night is yours to enjoy. At midnight lift a champagne toast to the New Year with new-found friends. Celebrate the New Year, mountain-style, until the wee hours of the morning with no need to worry about finding your way home. This is your home away from home!

Lodging: Evergreen Conference Center, Oakhurst (ECCO)

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day Four: Tuesday, January 01 - Do we really have to say goodbye?
Breakfast: Enjoy breakfast in Lyles Hall and take the opportunity to say goodbye to those who've shared this journey with you. Departure after breakfast gives you a chance to get an early start on your plans for the day.

Meals Included: Breakfast


Free Time Opportunities


Oakhurst
Bass LakeBass Lake is one of the most popular vacation spots in Central California. The lake was created back in 1899. It was enlarged 6 years later, and work on the present dam began in 1909. At 3,500 feet in the southern Sierra Nevada mountains, the 4-mile long lake is on the north fork of Willow Creek which is a tributary of the San Joaquin River. Its waters turn powerful, electricity-producing turbine engines for Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E), the world's largest non-government utility. Because of its altitude, it's not unsual for Bass Lake to have snow on the ground for several weeks during the winter--not tons of snow...but enough snow to carry chains in your trunk...and, as locals put it, enough snow to be beautiful but not bothersome. Bass Lake is popular for all of the right reasons. It's close to California's Central Valley (1 hour from Fresno) via Highway 41 and only 20 minutes from Yosemite. Nature lovers appreciate the lake, and so do fishermen--it's stocked with trout, bass, salmon, catfish, crappie and bluegill. Water skiers appreciate the warm water--75 to 78 degrees in the summer. The lake has excellent marina facilities.
Fresno Flats Historical SiteFresno Flats Historic Park recaptures the flavor of 19th Century life in the Sierra Nevada foothills and mountains of Central California. Eastern Madera County is the southern end of the historic Mother Lode gold fields, but the people who settled here came not so much for gold but more to build their lives and raise their families, making their living as farmers, merchants and using the rich natural resources of the mountains. The museum complex is built around two restored and furnished homes dating to the 1870s. Both have been designated by the State of California as Points of Historical Interest for their unique construction styles once common throughout Northern California, but virtually unknown today. They were saved from demolition, moved to Fresno Flats Historical Park and restored by the volunteers of Sierra Historic Sites Association, as were a pair of early-day one-room schools, two 19th Century jails and several other farm buildings.
For additional information, visit: www.fresnoflatsmuseum.org/about.html
Sierra Mono MuseumSierra Mono Indian Museum Roads 225 & 228, North Fork 9:00 - 4:00 Tuesday-Saturday 559-877-2115 Admission: $3/Adults $2/Seniors $1/Students The North Fork Mono Tribe is the original inhabitant of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The tribe consists of two clans: the golden eagle and the coyote, both of which are represented at the entrance to the museum. The Mono way of life is featured in the museum through examples of fishing, hunting, acorn gathering, cooking, healing, basketmaking, games and ceremonies. Also featured is the Tettleton Wildlife Collection, one of the finest in California.
Yosemite Mountain Sugar Pine RailroadThe Yosemite Mountain Sugar Pine Railroad is a restoration of the old narrow gauge Madera Sugar Pine Lumber Company Railroad. A section of the original railbed has been reconstructed using the same techniques used at the turn of the century. Two vintage Shay steam locomotives have been brought in from the Westside Lumber company and restored to provide authentic motive power for the trains. Shay number 15 was built in 1913 and weighs 60 tons. Number 10, built in 1928 weighs 83 tons and is the heavest operating narrow guage Shay locomotive today. Railcars once used to provide transportation for logging and track repair crews have been refurbished and are now operated for passenger excursion. Antique Model "A" Ford gas engines power the trolley-like "Jenny" cars over the route.
For additional information, visit: www.ymsprr.com/
Yosemite Sierra Visitors BureauCheck out the Yosemite-Sierra Visitors' Bureau for the wealth of activities available to visitors to our area, from photo, art and antique galleries to outdoor recreation activities to many sites of historical interest.
For additional information, visit: www.yosemitethisyear.com

Important information about your itinerary:
Please know that while we do everything we can to finalize all aspects of our programs well in advance, there are logistics that occasionally must be altered. Our website will reflect the most recent information, and we are committed to providing you with final program details no later than eight weeks prior to the start of programs outside the U.S. and three weeks prior to the start of programs within the U.S. If you ever have questions about your program, please don't hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to assist you.
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Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

Included
at no additional cost on this date ...
3 nights of accommodations
8 meals: 3 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 3 dinners
2 Expert-led lectures
2 Field trips
1 Performances

Ratings

4.7
Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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