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Nine Weeks to Go.  There's Still Time.

We're excited that very soon we will be gathering in Midlothian, Texas for our 18th annual O'Flaherty Irish Music Retreat.  If you are interested in attending, there are still openings in most of the classes.  There is one major change that you should consider before you enroll.  We have decided that all participants must be fully vaccinated and believe that this step will enable our students, instructors and volunteers to enjoy a safer environment as we meet in person.  We have published our new COVID-19 Policy below.

We have made other changes in light of the Delta variant (also see below), but despite these changes, we will do our very best to create the wonderful experience that is O’Flaherty’s.  It’s still about being in a safe community at a scenic place and learning Irish music from some of the best players/teachers in the world.  We hope you will join us.  And thanks for your understanding and continued support!

The  Delta variant has caused surges in COVID-19 infections throughout the country, particularly in Texas where the O’Flaherty Retreat is hosted.  To mitigate the spread of the virus at our event, the following requirements must be followed by all participants at the 2021 O’Flaherty Irish Music Retreat:

Vaccinations
All participants must be fully vaccinated. You are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after your second dose in a twodose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or two weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine.  Unfortunately, there are no vaccines currently approved for children under the age of 12, so consequently, they cannot attend the retreat. Although booster shots are now being recommended, they are not required, however, we encourage eligible participants to get them as an added precaution.

To verify vaccinations, you must complete a form and upload a vaccination card or some other valid medical record from a health agency or authority.  The document must show your name, the type of vaccine received and the date(s) the shot(s) were given. If you obtain a booster shot, you need not show proof of it — only your initial vaccinations. Having had COVID-19 previously does not release a participant from the vaccination requirement.

Masking
Currently, the CDC states that we should wear masks, regardless of vaccination status, when indoors in areas of “substantial or high transmission.”  Until Texas is removed from that classification, we will require masking in all public areas at the camp.  The exceptions are as follows:

  • During meals at the dining hall.
  • During the whistle, flute and singing classes.  These classes will be assigned to our largest meeting rooms and safe distancing will be established.  Instructors will be miked through portable sound systems for better hearing.
  • While participating in stage performances and informances as determined by the performers.
  • When outdoors.  If the weather is nice, some instructors may choose to conduct classes outdoors.
  • In personal spaces, like hotel rooms or cabins.
  • When not in contact with the general public.

Safe Distancing
The CDC recommends that you should stay six feet apart from people whom you don’t know are vaccinated.  Since we are requiring vaccinations, we will not require safe distancing except in our whistle, flute and singing classes where masks are impractical.

Enforcement
We will give a single warning to participants who do not follow our policies.  At the second violation, participants may be withdrawn from some or all activities and/or asked to leave Camp Hoblitzelle. 

Updates to Policy
It is possible that our policy could change as conditions improve or worsen.  We will follow the science, the data and the guidance of the CDC and other health organizations that would apply to our event.  We pledge to keep participants updated on any changes.

The O'Flaherty Irish Music Retreat is held in Midlothian, Texas 30 miles south of Dallas at Hoblitzelle Camp & Conference Center.  Go to MAPS for directions and click on the above graphic for a site map.

Deadlines

  • September 20th, 2021: Last date for guaranteed refund.
  • September 27th, 2021: Automatic credit/debit card charge for remaining balance.
  • October 9th, 2021: Online registration ends. After that, contact enroll@oflahertyretreat.org.
We have a great lineup this year including (left to right) Randal Bays (Advanced Fiddle), Michael Black (Singing), Seán Cleland (Intermediate Fiddle), David Curley (Guitar), Kara Doyle (Uilleann Pipes), Florence Fahy (Anglo Concertina), Shane Farrell (Tenor Banjo), Laura Feddersen (Fiddle Fundamentals), Marla Fibish (Mandolin), Seán Gavin (Flute), Maeve Gilchrist (Harp), Jacob McCauley (Bodhrán), Eamon O'Leary (Bouzouki), Cillian Vallely (Whistle), Caitlin Warbelow (Intermediate Fiddle) and John Whelan (Button Accordion).

A Few More Changes

  • We have reduced the number of classrooms because we want rooms where people have more space.  Consequently, the number of core courses offered has been reduced this year from 24 to 16.  Here is the CLASS SCHEDULE.
  • For this year only, because of the limited classrooms, we will not have "Fundamentals" courses except for fiddle.  We also will not offer dance and piano accordion classes or host our Thursday and Saturday night ceilis.
  • We will continue to use the enrollment software called RegFox that we began using for our virtual retreat last year.  Upon registering, you we will be asked to pay in full.  If you are unable to do that, please complete this FORM to receive a code that will permit you to pay only a $100.00 deposit.  To be able to make changes to your choices after you enroll, you must set up an account in RegFox. 
  • If you want to apply for scholarship, you must apply first and get a code before enrolling.  See details at SCHOLARSHIPS.   
  • Because of space concerns, we will not have vendor booths this year.  Our O'Flaherty Retreat Store will be open during our evening concerts.
If you attended our virtual retreat last year, RegFox, our new online enrollment application, will be familiar to you, but there are some differences because of our meeting in person.  If you haven't used RegFox before, you will find it easy to use.  For both groups, we have prepared some tips that will help you get through the enrollment process.  Go to TIPS

Before you register we suggest you:
  • Review our CLASS SCHEDULE for options for core classes, enrichment classes, workshops, informances and more.
  • Review our FAQs (answers to common questions about the retreat).
  • Review LODGING options.
  • Review MEALS options.  Here is the MENU.
  • Review the FEES.
  • Review the PAYMENT POLICIES.
You want to be prepared when you click on the "Registration" link at the top of any page on our website.  Determine your selections for classes, workshops, enrichment classes, informances, lodging and meals beforehand.  If you have general questions, email us at info@oflahertyretreat.org.  Regarding online enrollment, email enroll@oflahertyretreat.org.
 

Lodging Waiting List

Every year, we have some withdrawals and people who have found other accommodations that frees up some of our on-campus lodging.  We suggest you fill out a LODGING WAITING LIST REQUEST.  Some of you may get a happy call.
 

Class Waiting List

We also have some class transfers and withdrawals, so if your class is showing full, fill out a CLASS WAITING LIST FORM.
One of the best ways to keep updated about the O'Flaherty Retreat and seek assistance is to join our Facebook group.  There are lots of folks who have been to the retreat multiple times that can answer your questions.  It's also a good place to catch rides to the camp, share lodging costs, learn how to prepare, and much more.  Our retreat organizers pay close attention to posts as well, so you'll get correct information.  To join, go to RETREAT FB GROUP.
O'Flaherty Irish Music Retreat Facebook Group
O'Flaherty Irish Music Retreat
Copyright © 2021, All rights reserved.
Organized by the 
Traditional Irish Music Education Society (TIMES)
A non-profit organization based in Texas

Our mailing address is:
1320 Navaho Trail, Richardson, TX 75080

Our main phone number:
(469) 215-1840

Our email address:
info@oflahertyretreat.org

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