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SCICON available as retreat destination

Eleven hundred acres of beautiful oak trees, mountain views, wildlife, streams and solitude." The description of the SCICON outdoor education program sounds like it would work to lure businesses, civic groups, and youth organizations looking for a place to hold a retreat. Fortunately, it has!

SCICON Conference & Retreat Facilities Thanks to the efforts of SCICON administrator Rick Mitchell and conference specialist Peyton Ellas, more companies and organizations are headed to SCICON this year to hold their special meetings and events. School-based programs, scouting troops, music groups, church camps, family reunions, company leadership teams, and couples looking for an alcohol- and tobacco-free wedding event are finding the combination of nature and state-of-the-art facilities makes SCICON the perfect place for their events.

On weekends during the school year, the campus is available for conferences and retreats from Friday afternoon through Sunday afternoon. During the summer months, the campus is available both weekdays and weekends.

Conference stays include healthy and tasty meals at affordable rates. Working from a fully-staffed, professional kitchen, SCICON's food service manager can work with wedding planners and group leaders to accommodate all guests, including those with special diets. Food service staff can even pack "to-go" lunches for hiking or off-campus outings. Outdoor arbors and barbecues are also available for guest use.

SCICON offers free Wi-Fi and complete audio-visual technology in all its meeting rooms. In addition to miles of hiking trails, the campus also has a large outdoor recreation field with volleyball net, basketball hoop and area for horseshoes.

In keeping with the surroundings, SCICON's retreat facilities are rustic and simple. This helps keep the fees affordable for groups as small as 35 and as large as 300. Lodging is in semi-private and "student" bunk bed cabins. All cabins are heated and air conditioned and within walking distance of the John Muir Lodge and other meeting areas on the campus. Each conference group has a dedicated host to make sure everything goes smoothly. Ms. Ellas, hired as the part-time conference specialist in October 2012, is available to make conference arrangements.

"We are delighted to offer the SCICON campus for conferences and retreats," said County Superintendent of Schools Jim Vidak. "It offers organizations in Central California the best of both worlds - a spectacular site with excellent accommodations and an affordable venue close to home."

For more information, visit the website at www.tcoe.org/SCICONconferences or call (559) 539-5142.