23451
New Hampshire

Thoreau, Emerson & Transcendentalism in Concord & on Walden Pond

Learn about Henry David Thoreau, Ralph Waldo Emerson and other New England authors, and see why charming Concord and tranquil Walden Pond inspired their works and philosophy.
Rating (4)
Program No. 23451RJ
Length
6 days
Starts at
799
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6 days
5 nights
15 meals
5 B 5 L 5 D
DAY
1
Check-in, Registration, Welcome Dinner, Orientation
West Swanzey
D
Pilgrim Pines Camp and Retreat Center

Activity note: Conference center check-in from 4:00 p.m.

Afternoon: Program Registration, 4:00 – 5:30 p.m. After you have your room assignment, come to the Road Scholar table in the Mayflower Lodge to register with the program staff and get your welcome packet containing the up-to-date schedule that reflects any changes, other important information, and to confirm the time and location of the Orientation session. If you arriving late, please notify the Road Scholar Program Coordinator at roadscholar@pilgrimpines.org or by calling 603.499.6321. After check-in, a coffee and snack reception awaits us to allow time to meet staff members and other Road Scholar participants.

Dinner: In the Mayflower dining room, we will enjoy a buffet featuring meat and vegetable courses, with a full salad bar, dessert, and choice of drinks. Alternative menus are available upon request.

Evening: Orientation. 7:00 p.m. The Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the up-to-date program schedule, discuss roles and responsibilities, logistics, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer questions. Our program this week will focus the study of the life, writings, and influence of Henry David Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson. Periods in the daily schedule designated as “Free time” and “At leisure” offer opportunities to do what you like and make your experience even more meaningful and memorable according to your personal preferences. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions. Program activities, schedules, personnel, and indicated distances or times may change due to local circumstances/conditions. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding. Following the orientation, enjoy opportunities to converse with fellow Road Scholars over an evening snack, watch TV, play table games, or begin a group puzzle.

DAY
2
History of Concord, Nature and Human Nature, Monandock
West Swanzey
B,L,D
Pilgrim Pines Camp and Retreat Center

Activity note: We’ll have an opportunity to take part in a pre-breakfast Tai Chi session. Getting in and out of maxi-vans. Driving 30 miles, approximately 2 hours. Limited walking and standing required.

Breakfast: In the Mayflower dining room, we will enjoy a buffet featuring choices of cold and hot cereals, bread, scrambled eggs, sausage or bacon, fruit bar with yogurt and granola, plus coffee, tea, water, and juice.

Morning: Our first class session will focus on exploring the small town of Concord, Massachusetts. The morning break will include coffee, tea, water, fruit, and homemade Danish to renew our energy. Following the break, we will begin exploring the concepts of "nature" and "human nature' discovering the wildness around and inside of us.

Lunch: We will gather in the Mayflower dining room for an early buffet with choice of a full salad bar, soup of the day, salad, sandwich, dessert, and drinks.

Afternoon: We will then enjoy an opportunity to learn about Mount Monadnock, traveling by maxi-van through the surrounding towns to look at the mountain that inspired Thoreau and Emerson. We will also be able to take part in waterfront activities and the enjoyment of the tranquil atmosphere of the campus.

Dinner: Mayflower dining room buffet.

Evening: Tonight, we will watch the newest version of the film "Little Women."

DAY
3
Emerson's Concord Community, Living Deliberately, Friendship
West Swanzey
B,L,D
Pilgrim Pines Camp and Retreat Center

Activity note: We’ll have an opportunity to take part in a pre-breakfast Tai Chi session. Full day in the classroom. Limited walking and standing required.

Breakfast: Mayflower dining room buffet.

Morning: We will begin our day exploring the Concord through the lens of Emerson in his community. After a mid-morning break, we will discover the meaning of Thoreau's intention to "live deliberately."

Lunch: Mayflower dining room buffet.

Afternoon: This afternoon, we will learn about the friendship between the Emerson and Thoreau. Later in the afternoon, we will meet with a naval historian and builder of the "Musketaquid," Thoreau's boat, on loan from the Concord Museum. He will share the process of building the boat as well as its connection to Thoreau.

Dinner: Mayflower dining room buffet.

Evening: Tonight, we will hear from local fungi expert, connecting with our natural world through these grand microbial disassemblers.

DAY
4
Historic Concord, Walden Pond, Emerson's House, Colonial Inn
West Swanzey
B,L,D
Pilgrim Pines Camp and Retreat Center

Activity note: We’ll have an opportunity to take part in a pre-breakfast Tai Chi session. Getting on/off maxi-van. Driving about 4 hours today. Standing, walking short distances with optional longer walks at Walden Pond and the Old North Bridge. Climbing stairs at the Emerson House. Optional walking, approximately one mile, to Thoreau's original cabin site on a wooded trail.

Breakfast: Mayflower dining room buffet.

Morning: We will take a field trip by bus to historic Concord, Massachusetts, to see the great cultural landscape of the town led by our Group Leader. Starting at Walden Pond, we will visit a replica of his cabin and see the new visitor’s center with exhibits, artifacts, short film and timeline of Thoreau’s life. Our time at Walden includes a portrayal of Henry David Thoreau by a Living History Presenter, bringing history to life. For the more enthusiastic among us, we can walk to the original location of the cabin and get a sense of the place.

Lunch: At Concord’s Colonial Inn, we will enjoy a meal from a set menu in the very heart of Concord's historical center. Lunch includes coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase.

Afternoon: We will end our day at the Old North Bridge, where Minutemen and Red Coats faced one another and listened to the "shot heard 'round the world." We will view the exterior of the Old Manse, famous for both its literary and historical legacy and now a National Historic Landmark. Pocketing the thoughtful tranquility of the place, we’ll head back to our own lakeside retreat to reflect on the culture of the day.

Dinner: We will have bagged lunches on our return to Pilgrim Pines.

Evening: This evening, the Executive Director of the Monadnock Conservancy shares the mission of preserving natural resources, wild and working lands, rural character and scenic beauty of the region. The lecture includes overviews of projects, past and present that strengthen the community and connections to the land.

DAY
5
Connecting Concord's Revolutions, Authors and Antislavery
West Swanzey
B,L,D
Pilgrim Pines Camp and Retreat Center

Activity note: We’ll have an opportunity to take part in a pre-breakfast Tai Chi session. Limited walking and standing required. Opportunities for activities on campus including a pontoon boat ride on Swanzey Lake, hike to beaver habitat, recreation and relaxation.

Breakfast: Mayflower dining room buffet will feature farm-to-table, New Hampshire grown/produced foods.

Morning: We’ll begin the day connecting Concord's two revolutions. After the morning coffee break, we’ll continue discovering Concord's authors and their antislavery views and stands.

Lunch: Mayflower dining room buffet.

Afternoon: We’ll have some time before our next lesson to ourselves and to enjoy waterfront activities, a planned hike to the beaver habitat, golf or tennis—all located on the campus at Pilgrim Pines. Back in the Meetinghouse in the late afternoon, we will end our afternoon looking at Margaret Fuller, the strongest and most empowering female voice of the Transcendentalists.

Dinner: Mayflower dining room buffet.

Evening: After dinner, we gather for an evening of classic 19th-century entertainment, with poems, songs and tableaux vivants.

DAY
6
Transcendentalists In Our Time, Program Concludes
West Swanzey
B,L

Activity note: We’ll have an opportunity to take part in a pre-breakfast Tai Chi session. Conference center check-out by 10:00 a.m.

Breakfast: Mayflower dining room buffet.

Morning: After ample time to check out your room, we will gather for a last session discovering Transcendentalists in our time, looking at the questions they arise and their challenges to us.

Lunch: Bagged lunches will be available throughout the morning to sustain you on your way home. This concludes our program. If you are returning home, safe travels. If you are staying on independently, have a wonderful time. If you are transferring to another Road Scholar program, detailed instructions are included in your Information Packet for that program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on another rewarding program in the future. Don’t forget to join our Facebook page and follow us on Instagram. Best wishes for all your journeys!






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