Join us at Camp Ondessonk to experience the astronomical wonder of The Great North American Eclipse! We are so fortunate to be in the “Eclipse Crossroads of America,” where the center line of the 2017 eclipse passed over Camp, and now it will pass directly over us again on April 8, 2024!
Whether you stay with us for the entire weekend, or just for the 4 minutes and 9 seconds of totality, you won’t want to miss the breathtaking view that Camp Ondessonk offers.
3760 Ondessonk Road
Ozark, IL 62972
Weekend Guests: Saturday, April 6, 2024 @ 11:00 a.m. – Monday, April 8, 2024 @ 4:30 p.m.
Day Of Guests: Monday, April 8, 2024, 8:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
We are offering the option of a Monday Night Stay.
REGISTRATION: All guests must be pre-registered. Register online today!
REGISTRATION DEADLINE: March 15, 2024 @ 5:00 p.m.
Cancellations made 30 days or more in advance will receive a 75% refund.
Cancellations made less than 30 days in advance are not eligible for a refund.
Weekend Packages/Ticket Information
Camp is offering three options for entry to the event:
Standard Weekend Package: $180 per person for ages 4+ (Ages 3 & under free)
Premium Weekend Package: $250 per person for ages 4+ (Ages 3 & under free)
Monday Only Ticket: $50 per person for ages 4+ (Ages 3 & under free)
Standard Weekend Package includes unit* lodging, camp activities (canoeing/kayaking, climbing wall, archery, pony rides, etc.), education sessions, solar eclipse glasses, and meals from Saturday dinner through Monday lunch. Kids 3yrs old and under stay and eat for free. Check-in begins at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, April 6, 2024. All guests must depart by 4:30 p.m. on Monday, April 8, 2024 (unless you add a Monday Night Stay).
* For more information about unit lodging, please reference the Camp Information and Frequently Asked Questions sections of this webpage.
Premium Weekend Package includes everything in the Standard Weekend Package PLUS additional access to specialty education sessions, exclusive guided night-time astronomy sessions, and a meet-and-greet reception with food and beverages provided.
Monday Only Ticket includes a prime viewing area, camp activities (adventure activities unavailable), solar eclipse glasses and a sack lunch. Check-in begins at 8:00 a.m. and all guests must depart by 4:30 p.m.
Camp is offering the following upgrades & add-ons in addition to your package/ticket selection:
St. Noel Lodging Upgrade
Monday Night Stay
Adventure Activities (High Challenge & Horseback Riding)
$1,500 for Saturday & Sunday nights for up to 6 people
$200 for each additional guest (>6 people)
$20 per person (ages 4+) for unit camping
$100 per person (ages 4+) for St. Noel Lodging
$40 per person per activity (approximately one hour)
AVAILABLE ON SAT & SUN ONLY
Lodging upgrade to St. Noel Center includes private, comfortable, hostel-style, climate-controlled lodging with a private bathroom, and free WiFi. Each room has one queen size bed (with linens) and multiple twin-sized bunk beds (with mattress only-no linens). Room capacity varies by room, but ranges from 6-11 people.
View photos of St. Noel on our website.
There is a very limited number of St. Noel lodging upgrades available that must be reserved by phone. Please call 618-695-2489 x109 to reserve your upgrade today!
Add-On a Monday Night Stay! Don’t want to leave on Monday and fight traffic? We don’t blame you – so we have added the option to extend your stay until Tuesday morning at 10:00 a.m.!
Add-On Adventure Activities! Although your entry pass includes access to a bunch of fun Camp activities, there are two special adventure activities you can pre-purchase: High Challenge & Horseback Riding! There is a limited number of spaces available. First come, first serve. Participants must be 10+ years old and under 225 lbs in order to participate. Sorry – no exceptions! Each experience lasts approximately one hour.
– High Challenge: Step out of your comfort zone on Camp’s High Challenge course. The course is a series of ropes, cables, clips & platforms elevated 30′ in the air. Trained instructors guide individuals through each course element.
– Horseback Riding: Ride one of Camp’s 60 horses through the pastures or around the arena (weather dependent) and enjoy the scenic views!
All guests must be pre-registered. Register online today!
Camp Information (Lodging, Packing List, Activities, etc.)
About Camp Ondessonk
Camp is located on 983 acres of some of the most beautiful terrain in Southern Illinois for camping & hiking. We are uniquely situated adjacent to approximately 5,000 acres of uninterrupted Shawnee National Forest. A great destination for hiking, mountain biking, fishing or camping, our site is perfect for families or groups to spend the weekend in nature and sleep in a treehouse, pitch a tent, or for those who don’t wish to rough it, upgrade to a suite in our St. Noel Center.
Camp Ondessonk is a rustic and rugged campground with mostly open, non-climate controlled buildings. Camp is very spread out and the dining and activity areas may be as far as a mile from some of the units. No vehicles will be allowed inside the main area of camp due to the large number of guests expected. Expect to walk a lot over gravel roads and dirt trails while at Camp. The dining hall is modern and has air conditioning, but is located on a hill above most of the main area of Camp.
A “unit” is a cluster of 3-6 individual cabins that can accommodate 32-48 people. The units are rustic and there is NO ELECTRICITY. They are all unique in their own way. All units have fire pits, benches, picnic tables, a potable water spigot, an outhouse, and are within a short walk to a shower house. Each cabin includes no more than simply twin bunk beds with a mattress. Tent camping is allowed in all units, but only in previously impacted areas.
If anyone in your party has mobility issues, please contact the Office to arrange the best living situation for your while you are at Camp.
Below is a brief description of the various units:
Treehouses: The units of Goupil, Daniel, Lalemant, Garnier, Amantacha and Lalande are tucked away in the trees. These treehouse units feature A-frame roofs, three closed sides, and a labyrinth of connecting catwalks. Each cabin can accommodate up to eight people. Raganeau is unavailable to guests for this event.
Brebeuf Cabins: This unit resembles a treehouse, but the cabins sit on the ground. This unit is preferred if anyone in your party has mobility issues. Each cabin can accommodate up to eight people.
Chabanel Grotto: The coolest spot in Camp! This one-of-a-kind unit houses 16 people under a sandstone amphitheater and 16 people amongst two treehouses. Enjoy a waterfall if it rains!
Tekakwitha Cabins: This unit has three A-framed, fully enclosed, screened-in cabins, each holding 12 people. Uniquely located along a bluff line, its fire pit is underneath a cozy sandstone cave.
Aonnetta & Chiwatenhwa Cabins: Otherwise known as Monsignor Fournie Mini Camp Village, these units are co-located and share a common area, including a mini rope bridge, mini amphitheater and catwalks. Each unit has three 4-sided, fully enclosed cabins. Each cabin can accommodate 12 people.
PLEASE NOTE: These two units are designated as family-friendly units: quiet time begins at 10:00 pm, and alcohol consumption & smoking is prohibited at all times.
Check out photos of the various units on our website.
ST. NOEL CENTER LODGING
Camp Ondessonk’s St. Noel Center has nine private guest rooms. Each room includes private, comfortable hostel-style, climate-controlled lodging with a private bathroom, and free WiFi. Each room has one queen size bed (with linens), one full-sized bottom bunk (with mattress only-no linens), and several twin-sized bunk beds (with mattress only-no linens). Room capacity varies by room, but ranges from 6-11 people.
St. Noel is the only sleeping option with air conditioning. All guests have access to a shared meeting/dining space in the St. Noel basement, along with a kitchenette, barbeque grill, and outdoor firepit area.
View photos of the St. Noel Center on our website.
Ahatsistari is one of two designated tent camping sites. This site is nestled in the woods, has an outhouse, fire pit, benches, picnic table, and shares a water spigot with the adjacent unit of Goupil.
Brebeuf Flats is a grassy, open area right off Camp road. It has its own fire pit and benches, and shares an outhouse and water spigot with adjacent units of Aonnetta and Chiwatenhwa.
Both areas are a short walk to a shower house.
Kane Lake, Pine Lake, Durbin’s Barn, Morgan’s Field & Pakentuck are unavailable for tent camping during this particular event. Sorry!
Tent camping is allowed in the units, but only in previously impacted areas.
We are not able to accommodate RV/camper parking during this event.
Packing List (What to bring and what NOT to bring)
Below is a generalized packing list. It is not all-inclusive and merely suggestions.
- Clothing appropriate for being outside all day and into the night
- Swimsuit – because it is so early in the season, the swimming lake will not yet be open; however you may want to wear one if you go boating/kayaking
- Bedding, including pillow. Mattresses are provided.
- Toiletries and shower shoes
- A small backpack for carrying items throughout the day
- Refillable water bottles
- Flashlight or headlamp (don’t forget extra batteries)!
- Glow sticks or necklaces for nighttime – especially for children
- Matches and fire starters if you plan to have a fire at your unit
- Small personal first aid kit
- Bug spray and sunscreen
- Camping chairs
- Fishing pole/instruments/field guides – things to fill downtime (must have a fishing license for ages 16+)
- Closed-toe shoes – you will walk ALOT at camp. Bring appropriate footwear to wear at all times. Closed-toe shoes are required for horseback rides and high challenge course
- Cash/Spending money for the Trading Post (Camp Store) and firewood
What NOT to bring
- PETS – absolutely no pets are allowed on Camp property. If you bring a pet, unfortunately you will not be allowed to enter.
- Firewood – please do NOT bring your own. We have a woodshed with firewood for sale for $5 for a bundle of 15 logs. Please bring cash.
- Personal firearms/weapons
- Explosives of any kind
Activities may change at any time due to staffing, weather, or other factors. Be sure to check the schedule when you arrive for the most up-to-date list. Program areas listed during open activity times are free and open throughout the duration of the activity block. You may come and go as you please. Open areas typically include handicrafts, boating, archery, and climbing wall.
Specialty adventure activities require pre-registration. These activities include Horseback Riding and High Challenge course. These activities have age minimums and require an additional fee.
ALL activity areas, including the barn, pastures, ranges, waterfront areas, and challenge course are off-limits to guests without authorized staff.
You are welcome (and encouraged) to go hiking, biking & fishing on your own. Camp has nearly 25 miles of hiking trails marked with colored diamond trail blazes. Trail maps are available at the Trading Post. Bicyclists must wear a helmet at all times and are restricted to the camp roads and the cinder path. Please dismount and walk your bike near horses. Anyone 16+ years old must have a fishing license. No fishing is allowed in Lake St. Isaac, Camp’s swimming lake.
The Trading Post, Camp’s store, is located immediately through the gates by the kiosk in the main parking lot. The Trading Post will be open throughout the weekend. Wood, ice, snacks, and souvenirs are available for purchase. Credit and debit cards are accepted, along with cash and checks.
Camp Policies (Do’s & Don’ts)
PETS & PESTS
- NO PETS are allowed on Camp property. Those who bring pets will not be permitted to enter the event.
- Venomous copperhead snakes are common at Camp Ondessonk. Do not pick up any snakes! If a snake is encountered, back off, choose another route, and inform a Camp staff member. Do not kill any snakes. If bitten, seek medical care immediately.
- Ticks are common at Camp. Always conduct thorough tick-checks after spending time in the outdoors.
- Poison Ivy is also common at Camp. Please learn to identify it in order to avoid contact. If you believe you have been exposed, wash the area with soap and water immediately.
- Campfires are only allowed in designated, pre-established fire pits and must be supervised at all times. Campfires must be completely extinguished before departing. A bucket for water is provided at each unit.
- DO NOT bring outside firewood. Firewood is available for purchase at Camp. You are welcome to pick up any branches or dead wood that is already on the ground around your campsite.
- No candles or open flames are allowed in cabins and outhouses. Please bring battery-operated lights.
- You may cook in your unit, but secure your food or trash. You may bring a grill for cooking.
- To maintain a peaceful and rustic setting, the use of gasoline powered generators is prohibited.
- All lodging must be left in the condition found upon arrival (i.e., pick up trash, put all benches and beds back in place, etc.).
- Please avoid unnecessary discharge of fire extinguishers.
ST. NOEL LODGING
- The lower-level of St. Noel, the back patio, fire pit, and front deck are shared common areas and open for all guests of St. Noel to use and enjoy.
- The seating/dining areas, library, vending machines, kitchenette, small appliances, refrigerator/freezer, ice machine, and barbeque grill are also shared and available for use by St. Noel guests only.
- Please be courteous of guests with your use of the common areas and amenities.
- Upon departure, all bed linens should be placed in a pile in the middle of the bunk room, and used towels should be placed in the bathtub.
- The speed limit on the Camp road is 20 MPH.
- Personal vehicles are not allowed inside the main campground area and will remain in the main parking lot for the duration of the event.
- A Camp truck will haul your luggage to the unit for you.
- If you have mobility concerns, please contact us prior to your arrival.
- All activity areas or equipment, including the barn, pastures, ranges, waterfront areas, and challenge course is off-limits and permitted ONLY under the supervision of Camp Ondessonk staff during scheduled activity times.
- Anyone 16+ years old must have a fishing license to fish at Camp. No fishing is allowed in Lake St. Isaac, Camp’s swimming lake.
- Bicyclists must wear a helmet at all times and are restricted to camp roads and the cinder path.
- Do not touch or feed the horses. Enjoy them and take pictures from a safe distance.
- No personal watercraft allowed (canoes, kayaks, paddleboards, etc.)
- Lifejackets must be worn by all guests when boating.
- No climbing or repelling is allowed on Camp property unless it is part of a facilitated program.
SMOKING, ALCOHOL & DRUG POLICY
- Smoking is not permitted inside any Camp Ondessonk building or in the presence of children that are not your own. Please be considerate of our non-smoking guests.
- Alcoholic beverages are prohibited in activity areas (barn, ranges, etc.) and in common areas (Chapel, dining hall, parking lot, etc.). Alcohol may only be consumed in your reserved lodging.
- Consumption of alcohol by persons under the age of 21, as well as possession or use of illegal drugs, is strictly prohibited and will result in eviction from Camp and possible legal action.
- The units of Aonnetta & Chiwatenhwa are designated as “family-friendly” units for this event. No alcohol or smoking is allowed at any time.
- Please consider bringing beverages in aluminum cans rather than glass. Its makes sorting our recycling less messy and dangerous for our staff.
- Please be considerate of other guests. Though late-night campfire get-togethers are encouraged and expected, loud and disturbing noise is not permitted between 11:00 pm and 7:00 am.
- Aonnetta & Chiwatenhwa units are designated as “family-friendly” units and have a quiet time of 10:00 pm.
- Call 911 in the case of a medical emergency while onsite.
- There are no dedicated medical staff on site. All Camp staff are certified in CPR and first aid, and some full-time staff have advanced medical certifications, so first responders will be onsite.
- Our Health Center is not open for use.
- Program staff carry a first aid kit with commonly needed supplies, but there is no medication in these kits.
- Guests need to carry and dispense their own medications, both prescription and over-the-counter.
- Staff monitors sever weather alerts 24 hours a day. If severe weather is imminent, a runner will be sent to your unit to notify you of the incoming threat. If you have time, the safest place to be is in the nearest showerhouse.
- A Camp Ondessonk staff member can be reached at any time of the day or night by calling 618-759-1780.
Frequently Asked Questions
Arrival & Event Planning Questions