FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

What should we bring?

See our recommended packing list

What kind of clothes do we pack?

Pack casual, modest clothes for the week. Prepare for hot summer days and possible cool nights.

For pool attire we ask the women to wear modest bathing suits that completely cover the abdomen, otherwise a t-shirt must be worn over the suit at all time. Men should wear modest, boxer-short type swimsuits. Little ones will be asked to wear swim diapers in the kiddie pool.

For those going on horse rides (must be at least 10 years old) and pony rides, bring sturdy closed-toe shoes and long pants.

All children who have received their First Holy Communion within the past year are invited to bring their special clothing—veil, dress, suit—for the Eucharistic procession at the Sunday Mass.

How do you define "modest clothing"?

In order to protect the purity of everyone on the Holy Family Fest, we ask that…

  • No revealing, low cut shirts be worn.
  • All shorts be at least mid-thigh length.
  • Skirts be close to the knee.
  • Everyone wear a cover-up outside the pool area.
  • No bikinis be worn. (If you have one on, the lifeguard will ask you to put on a cover-up, even while swimming.)

Are there any extra charges that I need to know about?

As there are no laundry facilities on the grounds, we offer a pre-paid laundry service. Those interested in using this service may purchase a bag from the Snack Shack and fill it with up to 10 lbs of clothing (There is a charge for each additional pound, multiple bags may be purchased). Bags of dirty laundry are dropped off at the Snack Shack by 1:30pm on Tuesday and clean, folded laundry is picked up after 4:30pm on Wednesday. The cost varies slightly from year to year, but it is approximately $25/bag.

The fee for horseback riding is $15.00/person, per trail ride (must be 10 yrs and up).

All other activities (swimming, water slide, sports, etc.) are free of charge.

Can we bring our bikes and fishing poles?

Yes! You may ride your bikes in St. James Field and Holy Family Park (no bike trails available). You can fish in our St. Francis Lake (you will need to bring bait and tackle). No fishing license is required as it is a private lake.

Can I bring a friend?

Yes! When you register your family, please register your friend(s) or other persons who will be accompanying and staying with your family for the event. Any non- family member children under 18 will need to have a parent fill out a "Child Release Form." Registration fees apply for non-family member children and adults; please see the pricing page for more details.

Can a priest come to Catholic Familyland? What about lodging, meals, etc. for him? What will he do while he is there?

Yes, priest are most welcome! They are free to attend alone or come with a family who is attending a Fest. Each priest must complete a Permission for Extern Form as part of their registration and send a copy to both of the following entities:

ATTN: Linda Nichols, Chancellor
Diocese of Steubenville
422 Washington St.
P.O. Box 969
Steubenville, Ohio 43952
Fax: 740-282-3327

ATTN: Carolyn Stegmann
Apostolate for Family Consecration
3375 County Rd 36
Bloomingdale, Ohio 43910
Fax: 740-765-5561

We ask that each Priest register separately by filling out the standard registration form online. We will be happy to provide a retreat room and meals for the week at no charge. The priest (or often the family who invited him) is welcome to make a free will offering to cover food and lodging expenses through our online donation page (please make a note in comments box "For Fr. ______'s stay"). We invite all priests to concelebrate and all deacons to assist at Mass each day. We ask that they bring an alb. We also invite the priests to help administer the Sacrament of Reconciliation for the families, and we are most grateful for this service! They are also welcome to participate in the various morning activities for the adults.

After I register, will I receive a confirmation?

Yes, an email confirming your registration will be sent to you prior to the event. This message will include other helpful information, such as directions and a list of what to bring.

What is your payment policy?

Payment for your Registration Package is due up front at the time of registration. The prices for the different registration packages can be found on our pricing page.

Full payment is due no later than 60 days before the event start date. Within this 60 day period, if the credit card transaction is declined, you will have 7 days to correct the situation before your registration is cancelled and your lodging is opened up to another family.

Please note that we appreciate an initial payment of the full amount, as it helps us procure items to prepare for the event.

What is your refund /cancellation policy?

Cancellations which occur 60 or more days before the start date of your Holy Family Fest will receive a full refund minus a $100 non-refundable deposit. Cancellations which occur 30-59 days before the event start date will receive a refund of 50% of your payment (for paid totals in excess of $200), or your full payment minus the $100 non-refundable deposit (for paid totals less than $200). No refunds will be given within 29 days of the event start date. Payments that are lost due to cancellation are non-transferable.

What are the St. James Field Cabins like?

See: Lodging List

What are the Holy Family Park Cabins like?

See: Lodging List

If we don't stay at Familyland, will my family miss out on anything?

Staying on the grounds will offer the fullest experience of the unique environment that Catholic Familyland provides for this week of God-centered time with your family. It also gives more opportunities to connect with other families at the event. For this reason we encourage you to stay on the grounds, if possible.

What is the distance between St. James Field & Holy Family Park?

Approximately 1 mile. You can either drive (road not suitable for bikes), or walk the beautiful wooded trail (takes about 15-20 minutes). Throughout the trail are Stations of the Cross and the Mysteries of the Rosary.

What do families do for breakfast?

Families should bring their own breakfast items as there will be no food available for purchase until the afternoon. Parents and young adults will be served coffee, juice, donuts, and bagels before the morning programs Monday-Thursday.

What does your pre-paid catered dinner plan include?

We offer a dinner plan consisting of six catered dinners (Saturday through Thursday). Dinners include a main course, vegetable, tossed salad, drink (hot & cold) and dessert. The menu varies, but you can expect meals like Turkey, Chicken, Pasta, Roast Beef, Pork, Sloppy Joes, etc. Please indicate any special dietary needs on your registration form when purchasing the meal plan.

What's the deadline for signing up for the pre-paid catered dinner plan?

Two (2) weeks before the event start date.

Can we order the pre-paid catered dinner plan for just a few days?

No, the pre-paid catered dinner plan is only available as a package of 6 meals for the same individual.

What if I'm unsure the catered dinner plan when I register my family?

You may add your family to the dinner plan up to 2 weeks prior to the fest you are attending.

What if we sign up for the dinner plan, and decide later to cancel?

We recommend that you sign up for the dinner plan when you are sure of your family's plans. If your plans change, you may cancel your dinner plan. Cancellations must be made at least 2 weeks prior to your Holy Family Fest.

What are my other options if I don't want to participate in the catered dinner plan?

Our Mama C’s Snack Shack offers a variety of lunch and dinner food such as grilled hot dogs, hamburgers, cheeseburgers, chicken sandwiches, chicken nuggets, pizza, corn dogs, French fries, ice-cream, and more. You also may bring your own food, outside grill and/or other cooking equipment.

Although the campsites do not have individual fire pits, feel free to bring a fire pit that sits off the ground if you wish to cook over a fire. We ask that you do not burn a fire directly on the ground.

Where is the closest grocery or convenience store in case we forgot to bring some necessities?

There are grocery stores located in the Steubenville/Wintersville: a Walmart Supercenter (Steubenville) about 20 minutes from Catholic Familyland, and a Kroger's Grocery Store (Wintersville) about 15 minutes away . There are also a few convenience stores located about 10 minutes from Catholic Familyland. Directions to these stores will be included in your registration packet.

May I bring my pet to Catholic Familyland?

Sorry, no pets are allowed on the grounds. Pets can be boarded at Two Ridge Veterinary Clinic, LLC in Wintersville, OH which is located approximately 20 minutes from Catholic Familyland. Their phone number is 740-264-6320. Please note the clinic is CLOSED at Noon on Saturday) and all shots for your pet must be up-to-date 2 weeks prior to having your pet stay at the Clinic, including a Bordetella shot (Kennel Cough Vaccine). See their website for details.

For alternative options see: Westwood Veterinary Clinic & Oak Ridge Kennels and Grooming. All these locations require same vaccination records.

Is there Internet access at Catholic Familyland?

Wireless internet is available in St. Joseph’s Auditorium. If you have need of this during your stay please contact the Information desk or cashiers for the password.

What do I do if I arrive after Registration Check-in hours?

Registration begins on Saturday at 11:00am and ends at 9:00pm. FOR THOSE ARRIVING AFTER 9:00pm, please contact the registration cell phone at 740-632-7412 upon your arrival. He will show you to your lodging site and get you set up for the night.

Please be sure to stop by the Registration Table at the Holy Family Park, Sunday after the 10:00a.m. Mass (Mass will be in the Auditorium), to complete your Registration process. If you know ahead of time that you'll be arriving AFTER 9:00pm on Saturday, we appreciate you letting us know by emailing registration@afc.org in advance, so that we can give you your lodging information.

For directions to the Auditorium for Mass, see our CFL Hot Spots Map. There will be many other families heading toward 10AM mass on Sunday morning so you can simply follow the crowd.

What is check-out time on the last day of the Holy Family Fest?

Check-out is on Friday, no later than 2:00 p.m.

What time does the Family Fest begin on Saturday and end on Friday?

The Family Fest begins at 11am on Saturday with registration. Check-out is on Friday, no later than 2:00 p.m.

Do you have a sample schedule online?

Yes, CLICK HERE to see our sample schedule.

Is childcare provided for my children ages 3 and under?

No, toddlers and babies ages 3 and under will stay with their parents. For your convenience, during all events located in St. Joseph auditorium (including Mass), there is a play area for parents to take their children (ages 3 and under) which features a live television feed. There is also a quieter nursery room located in nearby Redeemer Hall which also has a live video and audio feed.

What activities are available for young children (age 0-12)?

Monday through Thursday, after morning Mass, children ages 4 to 12 gather with other kids their age to take part in various activities, including: swimming, hiking, playing games (inside and outside), Catechism lessons, crafts, and Eucharistic Adoration. During this time, parents are asked to watch their children age 3 and under, while the adult sessions are taking place. There is an open play area and ample walking space to keep you and your child engaged.

During the afternoons, there are free pony rides for those 9 and under, horse trail rides for those 10 and older, multiple playgrounds, and a full-sized swimming pool with an adjacent kiddy pool. We also offer a fully stocked activity shed, with sports equipment and games for anyone to use. Various tournaments take place throughout the week for those age 8 and older. We also offer the Sacrament of Reconciliation each afternoon, as well as Exposition and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.

Each day concludes with an activity that the entire family can enjoy, including: skits, a bonfire rosary and marshmallow roast, dance night, Banner Night (a family variety show), and more.

What activities are available for teens, young adults, parents and grandparents?

Monday through Thursday, after morning Mass, the adults have time for socializing and enjoying light refreshments, before hearing from different speakers.

The teens and young adults break off into 3 different groups (13-14 year olds, 15-18 year olds, and college age and up). These group programs provide a place where youth are free to be authentically themselves. They spend time hanging out with friends, having fun, learning about the Catholic faith, and encountering Jesus Christ in prayer and in the sacraments.

Most afternoons have one tournament specifically for those age 13 and up. There is also a fully stocked activity shed with sports equipment and games for anyone to use, horse trail rides, and a full-sized swimming pool. We also offer the Sacrament of Reconciliation each afternoon, as well as Exposition and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.

Each evening begins with an activity that the entire family can enjoy, including: skits, a bonfire rosary and marshmallow roast, dance night, Banner Night (a family variety show), and more. Following the family activity, the teens and young adults gather back into their groups for talks, games, and other activities.