NAS Homecoming

Reconnect with yourself and an amazing community of leaders!

NAS Homecoming

NAS Homecoming

Reconnect with yourself and an amazing community of leaders!

NAS Homecoming

After two years of hosting online community conversations, virtual hugs, and making nearly all of our programs fully remote in response to the pandemic, we’ve heard from so many of you who are eager to gather in person. It is so meaningful and necessary for communities to come together, to share food and joy and time with one another, and to disconnect from daily life and reconnect with ourselves and our community.   

That’s why we’re inviting you to join us for NAS Homecoming: September 29 – October 2, 2022 at Pearlstone Retreat Center in Reisterstown, Maryland.

Who This is For

Anyone and everyone in the NAS Community! Whether you’re a current program participant, completed one recently, or we haven’t spoken in years, you’re welcome here. 

Cost

NAS Homecoming is Pay What You Will. It’s important that every member of the NAS community has the opportunity to join us.

Our suggested price is $610 – the cost of your food and lodging – and we ask you meet a minimum of $300. We recognize that your time has value of its own, and we know that traveling to this retreat brings its own costs. If you’re able to pay more than our suggested price, the amount over $610 can be a tax deductible donation that enables NAS to cover attendance of other NAS community members.

Why is there a minimum cost? We’ve set a minimum booking price of $300 due to our costs associated with this gathering. If you would like to join the NAS community at this retreat and $300 is cost prohibitive, please email us at info@artstrategies.org.

We welcome you to pay the amount that works for you and are so excited to gather this fall!

What You Can Expect

Homecoming was co-designed with your peers from the NAS community and has three core priorities: Knowledge Building, Network Weaving, and Reflection Time. Together, we’ve created a space for powerful skill and idea sharing, meaningful connections, and time away from your day-to-day to help you return to your work and life with renewed energy and a fresh perspective.

Venue

The Pearlstone Retreat Center is located approximately 30 minutes from the Baltimore-Washington International Airport (and is accessible to other Washington, DC area airports as well)

We chose Pearlstone for its lived values of being a welcoming community to groups of all kinds, its commitment to sustainability and the land, its commitment to accessibility in both the living and meeting spaces, and from what we know, its policies and practices towards the staff. We also took into consideration location (near an international airport) and costs (to keep pricing accessible for participants).

We want to share that Pearlstone is a Jewish retreat center, and it was not our intention to host this gathering in a religious space of any kind. And yet, as we searched for months for a values-aligned space in which to gather our community, almost all were part of large corporations who have questionable values and policies or had smaller boutique locations in more remote locations at triple the cost. We of course understand that any religious affiliation may be uncomfortable for some, and we hope that for anyone who may be struggling with this, that you will find satisfaction in their policy of welcoming all groups as we do, and that you will be in touch with us directly if you have any additional questions or concerns.

We are deeply excited for all the ways in which this venue aligns with what’s most important to us and you, our community, and for all that the space will offer us in our time together, including organic produce grown on site, beautiful access to nature, spacious opportunities for gathering both indoors and out, and so much more. Learn more about the setting here.

Accessibility & Safety

Accessibility is a top priority for Homecoming. Pearlstone is designed with accessibility in mind and we encourage you to share your access needs when you book so we can do our best to center you. NAS is also committed to gathering as safely as possible, and will be carefully following the most up-to-date COVID-19 guidelines to keep this community in the loop on all anticipated safety protocols.

You can review NAS’ own COVID-19 guidelines for in person events here.

Homecoming at Home

NAS understands that attending in person may not be feasible for some members of our community, which is why we’re also offering Homecoming at Home, a thoughtfully constructed virtual experience September 30 & October 1 featuring sessions and conversations focusing on restorative practices and co-creating a stronger future. During Homecoming at Home we’ll guide you through having a retreat-like experience from the comfort of your own home, where you’ll have opportunities to refresh yourself and connect with the community.

Activities will include:

  • Facilitated opportunities to get to know other community members
  • Small group discussions of topics you propose
  • Opportunities to share your knowledge and tap into the wisdom of the community
  • Moments to consider what you want to manifest (for yourself, your work and/or your community) and learn a process for moving that forward
  • Connecting into the group conversations happening on-site at Homecoming

We know sitting on a long virtual call can get exhausting, and that schedules can get busy. We’ve made sure Homecoming at Home has lots of breaks so you can not only reflect on your experiences, but get to the little things that pop up throughout the day.

Booking your Homecoming at Home experience is $50.

Meet the Planning Committee

As NAS works to move away from conventional hierarchical leadership and decision making, we move instead towards coalition building, co-design, leaderful movements/organizations/communities, and consensus.

Homecoming was co-designed by a volunteer committee of alumni who represented the dimensions of our community’s leaders. Together, they worked enthusiastically to design a space that is uniquely by and for this family to connect, reflect, learn, and reimagine.

Meet the committee of alumni who co-designed this retreat!

Activities in the Area

Planning to be in the Baltimore-Washington D.C. area for a few days before or after Homecoming? We’ve put together a Homecoming experience guide with some of our local alumni for suggestions on places you won’t want to miss while you’re here.

Click below to see what each of our alumni recommend for making the most of your trip!

Local Establishments

For reference while you’re in the area we’ve created a list of local sites for medical care, COVID testing, and alternative lodging.

Check out our Local Establishments list here