Where is Big Rock Valley?

We’re located in southwest Michigan at 58220 Decatur Road in Cassopolis. If arriving with a GPS, use 58054 Decatur Road, Cassopolis, MI 49031.

The closest major airports are Chicago’s O’Hare (2-1/2 hours drive time) and Midway (2 hours) or Detroit (2-1/2 hours). Nearby regional airports are in South Bend, Indiana (45 minutes), and Kalamazoo (45 minutes) and Grand Rapids, Michigan (1-1/2 hours). Note: All time estimates are without traffic considerations, so adjust accordingly, and remember BRV is in the Eastern time zone and Chicago is in the Central time zone

When do I show up?

Check-in time is usually from 3-5 p.m. We encourage you to arrive early, so you’ll have time to explore the property or use our fitness and recreational centers.

Where will I stay?

You’ll receive your housing assignment on arrival. Most guests sleep in one of our five renovated railroad boxcars with one or more “boxcar mates.” These boxcars are a short walk from the Tower of Tomorrow, our primary meeting facility, and each boxcar features two bedrooms, a large bathroom and a sitting area. (All cars are equipped with bathrobes, towels, hair dryers, toiletries, telephones and — for folks who wish to remain perpetually alert — coffee makers.) We also have 10 renovated farmhouses that we use for overflow housing.

Is there WiFi?

Yup. It’s fast — and it’s free! (The Tower of Tomorrow also features a cell-phone booster that improves reception for your phone.) Other less electronic amenities include running and hiking trails; a fitness center with weights, treadmill and elliptical machine; and a leisure center with games and a television.

What should I pack?

Our dress code is country casual, which is even more relaxed than business casual. Jeans are a wardrobe stable here; ties are forbidden. Because we do a lot of outdoor activities, you may also want to bring a light rain jacket, hat, athletic shoes or hiking boots. Wintertime retreaters may want to bring snowshoes or cross-country skis.

What's for dinner?

All meals are prepared and served onsite by our awesome Guest Services staff. Most meals are served in a sit-down style according to the schedule created for your group. The bad news: Although we can be somewhat flexible with schedule modifications for the group, we don’t serve individual meals at varying times. The good news: There’s a snack bar at the Tower of Tomorrow where you can get beverages, yogurt, trail bars and other edibles 24/7.

Is there any down time?

Social and personal time are important components of the retreat experience and built into the schedule. Alcohol may be consumed in light to moderate amounts at planned social events and meals. (The foundation does not have a liquor license and is unable to provide alcohol.)

What if a crazed deer absconds with my cell phone?

You may make complementary long-distance calls from your boxcar, guest house or phones located in our meeting facilities. Computers are available at the Tower of Tomorrow to check email. If someone needs to get hold of you, day or night, the foundation’s emergency telephone number is 269-445-4222. Our staff will take a message and locate you.

For more information or to sign up your group for a retreat, contact Rita Phillips To read more of what our guests are saying, check out this admittedly self-promoting PDF with powerful insights into the retreat experience.

Property Information
Retreat info

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Retreat curriculum

retreat-crsLeader Retreats at BRV are designed specifically for leaders of second-stage companies — entrepreneurs who have moved beyond the startup phase and have the intent and capacity for continued growth.

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Curriculum overview

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Leader Retreats Overview
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Leadership of Me
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Leadership of My
Organization

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Leadership of My People
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Power and Influence
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The Drop-Dead
Honest Organization

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The Advanced Facilitator
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Performance Accelerator
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The Resilient Organization
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Single Company Retreats
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The Strategic Leader
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What people are saying ...

“What’s also refreshing is the fact you’re not just sitting in a conference room but able to use the grounds and other structures on the property. Take the boxcars…they’re simplistic, clean and clear — the perfect environment for contemplation. I even sent a message on Twitter: ‘Can you get somewhere on a stationary boxcar? I think you can.’ ”

— Kate Koziol, founder of K Squared Communications in Chicago, Illinois

Your Retreat Team