Lodging & Transportation

This year, all YAG lodging, the square dance, bonfires, and the majority of the Saturday activities will be at Higher Ground Retreat Center in West Harrison, Indiana, which is located about 35 minutes west of St. Gertrude’s.

The dorm building we have booked is set up to accommodate men and women in two separate wings, complete with their own bathrooms and showers.

If anyone of the opposite sex is found in the wrong wing at any time, he or she will be asked to get an Uber and leave immediately. Offenders likely will be barred from future YAG attendance.

Each wing is subdivided into several smaller rooms with 6 to 8 bunk beds in each and one larger room with more beds.  The bunkbeds have mattresses but no other bedding, so attendees MUST bring their own sheets, towels, pillows, blankets, toiletries, etc.  We try to have some backups on hand for emergencies, but we usually only have enough for about 20 people.

If you pack strategically, you can fit sheets, a few rolled-up throw blankets, and a small pillow into a medium-sized canvas tote bag or backpack, which you can bring as your personal item if you’re flying.  The dorm is air-conditioned and there are control panels in each room, so the temperatures can be adjusted for further comfort.

Higher Ground has a campus curfew of midnight, so by that time (or preferably before) attendees are expected to be in their sleeping quarters. PLEASE be considerate – if you plan to be up half the night talking and laughing, select one of the smaller rooms for yourself and your close friends and let the rest of us sleep in peace.  The “bedtime” of each room is usually determined by popular consensus and posted on the individual doors.

The YAG itself will start at St. Gertrude’s on Friday at 5 pm with Mass and dinner. Each day starts with Mass at St. Gertrude’s, NOT at Higher Ground. Always come to the church first!

Higher Ground Campus Rules & Regulations

  • Check-In: 3 pm
  • Check-Out: 11 am
  • Campground quiet time: Midnight – 6 am.
  • We do not provide swimming pool towels. Please do not remove bath towels from any place on the campus to take to the pool.
  • Candles and burning incense are prohibited in any and all buildings.
  • Please drive only on the roads.
  • Speed limit: 15 mph
  • No parking or driving on grass.
  • No cooking of any type allowed in any buildings.
  • Appropriate attire is to be worn at all times (shirts must be worn unless in the pool area).
  • No wet clothing in the Dining Hall or on cloth chairs.
  • Please do not nail, pin, staple, tape, glue, or tack anything to the walls. “Plastic Tac” is acceptable.
  • You are responsible for any damage that occurs during your stay.
  • NO PETS allowed anywhere on campus.
  • NO ALCOHOL allowed anywhere on campus.
  • NO SMOKING allowed EXCEPT in the two designated smoking areas: 1) Picnic table behind the barn and 2) Picnic table behind the Life Center.  A $100 fine will be assessed if smoking occurs in undesignated areas.

Football Field Rules – please read, soccer players!

  • No food or drinks on football fields – this includes chewing gum!
  • No metal spike shoes
  • No metal, glass, or other sharp objects that could puncture the fields
  • You are responsible for any damages that occur during your use of the fields
  • No “messy” games are allowed on the field without prior approval from the office


When planning flights, keep in mind that the airport is about an hour’s drive south of the church. Arriving early on Friday is not a problem; there will be people setting up in Helfta Hall and any help is appreciated!

DO NOT count on being able to get rides from locals to and from the airport. We try to coordinate at least a few pick-up runs, but it is all dependent on the work schedules and charity of our local YAGers. Uber is available in the Cincinnati area and once you get to SGG you will probably be able to carpool to and from the retreat center.

If you pack strategically, you can fit sheets, a few rolled-up throw blankets, and a small pillow into a medium-sized canvas tote bag or backpack, which you can have as your personal item in addition to your carry-on bag.

Due to space considerations, the YAGermeister is only able to have spare bedding for about 20 people in case of emergency, and much of it is spoken for ahead of time.


We coordinate pickup and drop-off at the Cincinnati-Covington (CVG) airport as much as is possible, but our drivers are all volunteers so this service is entirely dependent upon their generosity and free time. Any pickups will be at the Level 2 Baggage Claim but MUST be pre-arranged.

Once you arrive at St. Gertrude’s, we will be arranging carpooling to and from Higher Ground. If at any point you find yourself unsure about how to get from the church to St. Gertrude’s or vice versa, SPEAK UP and tell the people nearby that you need a ride!