Frequently Asked Questions
Arrival and Departure
The retreat ends on Sunday, June 23 with a final talk and closing ceremony for the entire group to take down of the shrine. This is followed by lunch at noon. The closing ceremony is an important part of the Profound Treasury Retreat. Please schedule your departure from Ferry Beach after 11:30am on Sunday, June 23 – lunch is optional. We need to vacate our rooms by 9am – instructions will be given for where to leave luggage.
Please make your travel plans accordingly. If you must arrive later than dinnertime on June 14th or leave earlier than 11:30am on June 23th, please let us know as soon as possible by emailing the Registrar, Lynn Friedman firstname.lastname@example.org).
For those who are flying, there are three airports in the vicinity of Saco, ME where Ferry Beach is located:Portland Jetport in Portland, ME Logan International Airport in Boston, MA, and Manchester Airport in Manchester, NH.
The closest airport is Portland, ME, but you might get a better deal flying into Boston. From Boston Logan airport, you can take the Amtrak Downeaster train to Saco, ME (book ahead for significantly lower rates), or you can also take a bus to Portland on Concord Coachlines.
Ferry Beach has arranged a transportation service from Portland directly to the Ferry Beach Conference Center, which is on the coast about 4 miles outside of the village of Saco. This service is by pre-arrangement only – it is not a taxi service. You must fill out the Ferry Beach Transportation Request Form at least one week before your arrival.
We recommend booking the Ferry Beach transportation service. The other options for getting from Portland to the retreat are more complicated. The journey you’ll make is getting from Portland to Saco and then from Saco to the Ferry Beach Conference Center.
If you fly into Portland, you’ll need to get a taxi or bus from the airport to the Amtrak station. Here’s some information on Ground Transportation to and from the Portland Airport. You can take a Shuttlebus/ Bus that runs between Portland and Saco from 6:30am – 6:30pm. It’s about $5 one way. Complete information to help you make your choices on the bus is available on the bus site. Once in Saco, you can take a taxi for $15 – $20 to the Ferry Beach Conference Center. Uber also serves the Portland area.
If you are interested in sharing a ride either the whole way or say, from Boston Logan, participants in the past have had good luck with a ride board. We host our own ride board. Information will be available for this in late April or early May.
What to Bring
Those camping do not receive linens or towels. Please bring these with you when you come.
Ferry Beach Retreat Center is located 4 miles away from any kind of shop so there is no opportunity to pick up items once at the retreat. There is no store on the location of the retreat. Consider things like snacks, contact lens solution, soap and deodorant when packing for the trip. It’s Maine, so tick and mosquito repellent as well as sun protection are great to bring.
There are a limited number of camp sites with tent platforms, which also include electrical outlets. In case you don’t get one of these sites, it is recommended that you bring a tarp or ground sheet.
Since the camping area is in the pine forest across from the Retreat Center, consider mosquito netting or repellent, a light source such as a lantern and flashlight, and a sleeping pad or air mattress. Flip flops or other easy on/off shoes are great for the trek to the showers and WC.
The most important preparation you can do for the retreat is to have a regular sitting practice. Try to meditate every day and do longer sessions on the weekends. If you are able to attend group meditation sessions, that would be excellent. If you have been introduced to tonglen practice, make it a point to incorporate this into your daily and weekly practice so that it feels familiar to you.
See the Reading List for this year’s retreat. Our friends at Ocean have announced an online study group for Judy Lief’s teachings from the 2018 Profound Treasury Retreat in Maine: Fear and Courage in the Three Yanas, on Wednesdays at 7:00 PM EST from April 10, 2019 to May 15, 2019. You can find more information on this course and the registration link here.
There are also opportunities to volunteer for shrine room duties such as ikebana (flower arranging), umdze (chant leader and time-keeper), gatekeeper, shrine-keeper, and drummer during chants. If you have an interest in any of these positions, there is always an opportunity for training and practice in a supportive atmosphere. You can sign up for these positions at a board in the post-meditation hall where daily announcements are posted.
We also have a number of events that require extra effort from our community, for our community. These include building a bonfire one night, setting up for the final banquet, and help with any feasts. Volunteering is a great way to meet new people and engage with the retreat
Food and Drink
Ferry Beach does its best to accommodate everyone’s needs, and provides vegetarian and vegan options for those who request them prior to the retreat, as well as gluten-free and dairy-free options. You can see the Ferry Beach Summer Menu and read the Food Mission Statement on their website. All participants will receive a Participant Questionnaire asking for information about their food needs and preferences. It’s important to fill this out so that the kitchen staff can plan to meet your dietary needs.
Photography and Use of Electronic Devices
Participants cannot make video or audio recordings of the talks under any circumstances. An official retreat photographer will be taking photographs during the retreat. The Participant Questionnaire includes a waiver allowing us to use your image if you appear in any photographs, as well as a general waiver of liability.
Finally, to maintain the contemplative atmosphere of the retreat, we ask that you do not use your mobile phone in public spaces and that you only use it in private if absolutely necessary.
Costs and Money
Prices range depending on the type of accommodations you select. Please see the pricing page for more details.
There is a separate refund policy for the Application Fee. If you apply and are accepted, the Application Fee is credited to your tuition. If you are accepted and do not attend, the Application Fee is forfeited. If you are not accepted, your Application Fee will be refunded.
The Profound Treasury Dharma Foundation is committed to offering the authentic transmission of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche’s presentation of the Dharma to all who want to receive it, regardless of their financial capacity. Please see our Pricing page for more details.
You can apply for a scholarship during the Application process. Funds are not unlimited, and are awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis. Please apply as early as possible. You will be notified of your scholarship in your acceptance letter.
There will be an opportunity to offer a teaching gift to the head teacher (a traditional offering after receiving teachings). The amount of a teaching gift, if you wish to offer one, is completely up to you.
We also collect a small offering to show our appreciation for the Ferry Beach staff who who take such good care of us.
We can accept major credit cards for offerings if you don’t have cash.