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How much does it Cost?

The early-bird registration fee (on or before February 20, 2020) for the workshop is $350. Registration after February 20, 2020 is $375. This includes all meals, lodging, and basic workshop programming. Some sessions have additional fees for materials or equipment which you may use and/or take home. A $100 deposit is required with every registration. 

Who Can Attend BLW?

BLW welcomes those interested in developing or improving recreational leadership skills - regardless of race, ethnicity, creed, social status, gender, sexual orientation, or disability. A minimum age of 15 (or a freshman in high school) is required to attend.  Full-time participation from Wednesday evening until Sunday at 4:00 p.m. is required. 


How do Sessions Work?

At BLW, you choose one morning session and one afternoon session. You then attend these sessions each of the four days of the workshop. That means you get about 6 hours to focus on the content for each of the two sessions you choose!

For those who’ve been to other conferences or workshops, this is totally different from the approximately 1 hour you get for each topic at those events. You really get to dig in to the content and take a hands-on approach to learning new skills and techniques.

A Typical Day at BLW

7:00am Rise & Shine
7:30am Morning Moments
8:00am Breakfast
8:45am Song Circle
9:15am Think Together
10:30am Morning Session
12:30pm Lunch
2:00pm Afternoon Session
4:00pm 4 to 5ers
5:30pm Dinner
7:00pm Evening Program
10:00pm Closing / Daily Debrief
10:30pm Late Night Activities
11:30pm Everyone in Cabins
midnight Lights Out


Communal Living

At BLW, we place great value on the community-building aspect of our workshop. In pursuit of that goal, all participants are required to stay on site at Recreation Unlimited. Participants stay in dormitories, which house up to 20 individuals per room. The communal housing arrangement is an important component of the BLW experience, and as such it is not an option to request alternative housing arrangements or to stay off-site.

Health Information

There is a nurse on duty throughout BLW, in case of injury or illness. All participants are required to complete a health information form prior to attendance. We also need notice of any special dietary needs at least 3 weeks in advance of the workshop. All medications - prescription or over-the-counter - must be turned in to the nurse upon arrival. Only epi-pens and rescue-inhalers may be kept with you during the workshop.



In order to get the full value of participating in BLW, participants must attend the entire workshop, and participate in all activities and events, except those specifically marked as optional. Our policy requires full-time participation from Wednesday evening through Sunday afternoon. Please come prepared to fully engage in workshop activities from breakfast through the closing circle and debrief each evening!


We try to maintain a technology-free environment for the duration of the workshop. We ask that all participants turn off their cell phones and other electronic devices, and do not use them during program time. There is time during R&R after lunch, free time between 4 to 5ers and dinner, and time after evening program when you can check your messages. There is no Wi-Fi provided, and we ask that you only use your devices during free time.


Think Together

Think Together is one of the things that makes BLW so unique! Each day, participants will meet in small groups with their Think Together (TT) leaders. For about an hour each day, the TT groups will discuss topics related to the workshop, process some of the themes and activities, bond with the TT group, and have an opportunity to reflect on the BLW experience with other workshoppers.

Morning Moments

Are you an early riser? If so, morning moments are for you! Morning moments are optional activities offered each morning before breakfast. These are intended to be an inspirational start to your day, and help get you in the right mindset for a full day at BLW. Morning moments may include crafts, music, yoga and stretching, self reflection activities, or other fun ideas developed by the morning moments committee members.


Evening Programs

BLW attempts to provide programming ideas you can easily take back to your own programs. The evening programs are something to look forward to and always memorable! Costumes are optional but highly encouraged. Our goal is to provide entertaining and exciting programs with themes, activities, and materials that are entertaining for a variety of activity levels and ages.

What’s a 4 to 5er?

These are optional one hour (or less) sessions taught by you, the workshoppers! If you are interested in offering a 4 to 5er, you will have the opportunity to sign up in advance, or make an announcement at the workshop. These may include dancing, new games, crafts, music, and more. 4 to 5ers are offered from 4 to 5pm each day. Some 4 to 5ers may have a small charge to cover materials and supplies.


Auction Night

Going once, going twice, SOLD! Each year we hold both a live and a silent auction to benefit the R. Bruce Tom Memorial Scholarship Fund. We ask workshoppers to bring items to donate to the auction and to support the scholarship fund by bidding on and buying those items. Handmade items or unique items from your hometown are always appreciated... be creative! We are always amazed by the high quality items we receive!

Resource Center

Be sure to bring some extra funds as you are sure to find something you will want to take home from the BLW Resource Center. Recreation-related books and reference materials, music, equipment, supplies, and official BLW clothing are among the selections available. The BLW Resource Center accepts cash, checks, and credit cards. (Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express).


Refunds & CAncellations

BLW will refund half of the deposit ($50) if a person cancels their registration before February 25, 2020. Deposits will not be refunded for cancellations after February 25, 2020 (within 1 month of the workshop). Substitute attendees for the workshop will not be accepted without written approval from the BLW Registrar.


Partial scholarships to BLW are available through the R. Bruce Tom Memorial Fund. You can apply for the scholarship when you register online. You will be required to submit two letters of recommendation with your application. The deadline for scholarship applications is January 6, 2020.