Frequently Asked Questions

Where do I go when I arrive?

Upon arrival at the Retreat Center, guests will see three buildings in close proximity. Check-in will be at the front desk of the Youngdahl Lodge, the middle building. A staff member at the front desk will welcome you and direct you to your designated meeting space. View our campus building map here.

What should I pack?

Pack appropriate clothing and toiletries for the purpose of your group’s retreat and the length of your stay. We encourage you to bring essentials for indoor and outdoor recreation, such as a swimsuit or hiking/walking shoes. A journal and water bottle also come in handy when on retreat. The Retreat Center provides sheets, towels, linens, and pillows for your stay.

How do I access the trails?

Walk, run, ski, or snowshoe on our 5 miles of trails. The trails can be accessed at multiple locations on our grounds. Download our trail map to view the trails and decide which you will explore today. View our map of the trails here.

Is there WIFI?

High-speed WIFI is available throughout the Youngdahl Lodge, the Cornell House, and the Chapel. The password is posted at the front desk in the Youngdahl Lodge Lobby.

Do you welcome personal retreats?

Yes! Personal retreat guests are invited to stay in our hotel-style rooms which have private bathrooms and are furnished with full-sized beds. Our professional chefs delight in preparing nutritious and delicious food, and are happy to accommodate special dietary needs with advance notice. Amenities like the pool, whirlpool, sauna, cozy lounges, meditation room, miles of trails, prayer labyrinth, and fire pits are available any time to support your rest and renewal. Additionally, spiritual direction is available at an additional cost. Please make reservations at least 7-10 days in advance.

How can I contact the Retreat Center?

You can call us at 952.469.2175. Our office is staffed Monday-Friday from 8am-5pm and Saturday from 8am-1pm. There is always a staff member on call. In case of an emergency, you can reach the on-call manager at 952.201.1663.

Can I bring my pet with me?

Pets are not allowed at the Retreat Center or on the trails. Trained service animals in ADA-specified service are allowed.

Where are meals served?

Meals are served in the Trillium Dining Room on the main floor of the Youngdahl Lodge at the following times (unless other arrangements have been made in advance): 8am Breakfast, 12pm Lunch, and 6pm Dinner. Groups eat meals together while sharing the space of our large dining room with other guests.

What kind of food do you serve?

Most of our food is made from scratch and sourced locally. We have an organic garden on site where we harvest fresh fruit and vegetables during the summer months. We get vegan protein from a vegan deli in Minneapolis. We can accommodate gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, vegan, and other dietary needs/restrictions. Click here for sample menus.

What’s your maximum capacity?

This depends on a group’s needs. For overnight accommodations, we have 18 hotel-style rooms and 4 dorm rooms. If a group only wants single occupancy rooms, their maximum capacity is 22 which includes 1 person in each of the dorms. Groups who use all the beds in the dorms and stay at double or triple occupancy in the hotel-style rooms can have 75-100 participants overnight. For groups with day guests, our largest meeting room seats up to 200 people theater style.

Will my queer participants be safe?

The staff at Mount Olivet Conference & Retreat Center is committed to extending hospitality to all, especially those who have historically not experienced welcome within Christian institutions. Everyone – especially those on the margins of society – deserves rest, renewal, healing, and wholeness.

How do you extend hospitality to people of different denominations, religious traditions, and no faith background?

We are an affiliate organization of Mount Olivet Lutheran Church. Precisely because of our Christian roots, we welcome everyone. We’re interested in compassion, not conversion, and we hope our unintrusive hospitality allows those from any religion or no religion to feel comfortable, relaxed, and free from worry. If there are ways your participants would feel more welcome, let us know during the booking process!

What is your alcohol policy?

Mount Olivet Conference & Retreat Center allows limited use of alcoholic beverages on-site when it is programmatically relevant for a group and when doing so will not adversely impact other groups on-site at the same time. Requests for use of alcoholic beverages can be made at the time of booking a retreat.

Can I smoke?

All our buildings are smoke free. Smoking is permitted in designated areas outside each building.