Camp Ondessonk has a wide variety of facilities & event meeting spaces to choose from. Reserve your spot today!
Camp Ondessonk’s Signature Treehouses
One of the highlights of an Ondessonk visit, our 3-sided treehouse cabin units take full advantage of their natural surroundings. They are intentionally designed and located to maximize visitors’ experience of tranquility and inspiration of nature. Some are on the ground for ease of access, one is built under a shelter bluff with its own waterfall, and others are walled in for a bit more security. Whichever unit you choose, you will be immersed in the natural world in a unique setting. Most cabin units have 5-6 cabins and sleep around 40 guests. All cabin units have fire pits, benches, picnic tables, a water spigot, an outhouse, and are close to a shower house.
Lalande: Nestled beside a bluff, the treehouse-style unit of Lalande is one of the most picturesque units at Camp. It is the closest unit to the heated Beach Shower House and boasts its own waterfall! Lalande (pronounced lah-LAHND) has a capacity of 48 people in 6 cabins of 8 bunks. There is also plenty of tent space.
Goupil: Situated atop a sandstone bluff, Goupil is one of the most unique units at Camp Ondessonk. Goupil is aptly nicknamed the “Stair-Master Unit” because of the number of stairs that connect the cabins of this steep but beautiful unit. There is a great view of Lake Echon from the top of the spiral staircase. Goupil (pronounced (goo-PEL) has a capacity of 48 people in 6 cabins of 8 bunks.
Chabanel: (shah-bah-NEL) This is affectionately referred to as the “Cave Unit”. It is tucked underneath a sandstone shelter bluff and behind a beautiful seasonal waterfall. There is definitely no other unit at Camp like Chabanel . This unit has a capacity of 40 people. There are three bunk platforms under the rock and two treehouse-style cabins that all hold 8 bunks.
Lalemant: The unit of Lalemant is often overlooked, but also underrated. It’s one of the few units with its own driveway off the main Camp Road which keeps traffic and noise to a minimum. While it is one of the farther units from the main area of Camp, its location is a perfect jumping-off point to great spots on Camp’s East Side like Durbin’s Barn, Kane Lake, and the Pakentuck area. Lalemant (pronounced lah-leh-MAHNT) has a capacity of 48 people in 6 cabins of 8 bunks.
Garnier: Garnier is a favorite unit of folks who want to be farther away from the main area of Camp. It is situated right on Lake Echon, which makes it perfect for fishing and there’s even a fish cleaning table. Garnier’s location makes it an easy walk to great hiking spots on Camp’s West Side and down the Cinder Path into the Shawnee National Forest. Fall asleep to the soothing sounds of running water over the nearby Spillway. Garnier (pronounced gar-nee-AY) has a capacity of 48 people in 6 cabins of 8 bunks.
Brebeuf: The 3-sided cabins of Brebeuf sit on the ground for easy access and the unit is located slightly off the Camp Road keeping drive-by traffic to a minimum. Brebeuf (pronounced bre-BUHF) is close to Shower House B and the entrance to the Amantacha Bridge making it a convenient location for hikes down the Cinder Path into the Shawnee National Forest. This unit has a capacity of 48 people in 6 cabins of 8 bunks.
Tekakwitha: These A-Frame cabins are fully enclosed and screened-in. Tekakwitha (pronounced tek-ah-WITH-ah) is located along a bluff line and its fire pit is underneath a cozy sandstone cave making campfires a possibility in any weather. The unit is also at the entrance to Phantom’s Canyon making it perfect for taking day hikes into Camp’s West Side trails. Tekakwitha has a capacity of 45 people in 3 cabins of 15 bunks.
Raganeau: The unit of Raganeau is way back in the woods for those wishing to have a truly remote experience at Camp. Raganeau (pronounced RAG-eh-no) is in one of the most scenic sections of woods at Camp and sits at the mouth of Phantom’s Canyon for easy access to Camp’s West Side trails. Raganeau has a capacity of 40 people in 5 cabins of 8 bunks.
Amantacha: Take the swinging bridge over Lake Echon to this great lakeside treehouse unit. Amantacha is perched on a hillside overlooking the lake below and is a great location for folks who want to venture out into the surrounding Shawnee National Forest. Amantacha (pronounced ah-man-TAHK-ah) has a capacity of 40 people in 5 cabins of 8 bunks each.
Chiwatenhwa and Aonnetta: Collectively, the John T. Fournie Mini Camp Village, Chiwatenhwa (sheh-WAH’-ten-wah) and Aonnetta, (a-oh-NET’-ah) are the newest cabin units in Camp, built in 2015. The two clusters of 3 cabins sleep 44 each, and each has its own fire pit area with benches. Each of the 6 cabins has a large side with 10-12 bunks and a small side with 4 bunks separated by a wall with a closing door. Chiwatenhwa and Aonnetta can be reserved separately on busier weekends, or as one big mega-unit for large groups. A paved driveway, parking area, and ramps make it accessible for anyone. The cabins are fully enclosed and have one electric outlet each, but no lights. Mini Camp Village is the perfect place to introduce a young family to Camp and is completely alcohol and tobacco-free, year-round.
Camp Ondessonk Dorms: The Dorms are located right off Camp’s main parking lot and perfect for those not wishing to fully rough it in the colder months of the year. There are two cabins; the Upper Dorms and the Lower Dorms. Each has a covered front porch, electricity, and heat. They share a fire pit area and are next to a heated shower house. The Upper Dorms sleeps 22 people; the Lower Dorms, 27 people.
BOQ: The Bachelor Officer’s Quarters is very close to the main area of Camp and sleeps 26 people. It is fully enclosed with electricity and a covered front porch. There is no heat, but guests are welcome to bring electric heaters – no gas, please. There is also a fire pit area with benches and a picnic table. The BOQ is perfect for bigger groups coming to Camp in the chillier months of the year.
Tent Camping Areas
Ahatsistari: This area was once a cabin unit, but the cabins have since been removed and the site repurposed as a tent camping area. Ahatsistari (pronounced ah-HAS-i-tari) has a wooden tent platform, an outhouse, fire pit, benches, picnic table, trash can, and shares a year-round water spigot with the adjacent unit of Goupil.
Brebeuf Flats: This grassy area right off the Camp Road is a great spot for a large group of tents. Brebeuf Flats has its own fire pit and benches and shares an outhouse, year-round water spigot, and trash receptacles with the adjacent Fournie Mini Camp Village. It is also next door to Shower House B and very close to the Phantom’s Canyon trailhead.
Durbin’s Barn: This may be the most unique camping area at Camp. Durbin’s Barn was built in the 1930s and restored by Camp in 2011 but still maintains its old-fashioned charm. The ground floor and the loft upstairs have plenty of room for large groups. Durbin’s Barn has a fire pit, benches, picnic table, and an outhouse. Water is not available, but visitors are welcome to fill up their own water jugs from any spigot in the main area of Camp. The road going up to Durbin’s Barn from the main area of Camp is only advised for high clearance, 4-wheel drive vehicles and is best accessed via Camp’s back gate which can be unlocked for you. Durbin’s Barn is perfectly located for hikes to the Pakentuck area and the greater Shawnee National Forest.
Kane Lake: Kane Lake boasts a large park-like setting with its own pavilion shelter. Kane Lake is a favorite of local fishermen and a great spot to base camp while taking day hikes to the Pakentuck area. The site also has an outhouse, fire pit, benches, and picnic tables. Water is not available, but visitors are welcome to fill up their own water jugs from any spigot in the main area of Camp. The road going up to Kane Lake from the main area of Camp is only advised for high clearance, 4-wheel drive vehicles and is best accessed via Camp’s back gate which can be unlocked for you.
Packentuck: The Packentuck campsite is located just yards away from the lower falls. There is a nice-sized campfire ring and hitching rails for equestrians passing through. There is only foot traffic allowed to the falls to keep it pristine. This waterfall is named Cedar Falls, but its nickname is “Packentuck” which comes from a contraction of the city and state Paducah, Kentucky. This site is one of our greatest hidden treasures.
Phantom’s Canyon: The Phantom’s Canyon campsite is nestled along a sandstone bluff-line and surrounded by beech, sycamore and hickory trees. This box canyon has a stunning waterfall that leads into a creek that passes along the campsite. This site offers a great, secluded feel, while only being a short hike from the amenities of main camp.
Pine Lake: One of the furthest overnight spots on Camp property, Pine Lake is a very secluded and picturesque spot for those wishing to get away from the main area of Camp. There is a fire pit and benches, a pavilion to keep you dry in rainy weather, and great access to trails leading into the Shawnee National Forest. There is an outhouse, but no potable water at Pine Lake, so this spot is truly roughin’ it. Access to Pine Lake is off Pakentuck Road and folks must park there and walk the quarter-mile trail back to the lake.
FOURNIE LODGE – LORETTO UNIT
Loretto Unit: Three room suite floorplan: Two bedrooms, one bathroom, great room with fireplace, open floor plan kitchen, large deck, and campfire area (ADA accessible). Can hold up to 4 guests.
EVENT MEETING SPACES:
Our facilities & event meeting spaces are located on 983 acres in Ozark, Illinois. Let Camp Ondessonk help plan your next Corporate Retreat, School Group Event, Spiritual Retreat, Vacation, or Family Reunion with our unique event meeting spaces.
The St. Noel Retreat and Conference Center is a modern, climate-controlled facility with nine hostel-style rooms and meeting and dining space in the basement as well as a kitchenette and a common sitting area/library. The building has audio/visual equipment, free WiFi, and event meeting spaces.
Open all year, St. Noel Retreat and Conference Center is the perfect place to get away for the weekend, host a retreat or youth group, or just enjoy the beauty of Camp Ondessonk and surrounding Shawnee National Forest without having to “rough it”.
The newly renovated facility offers the following amenities:
- Hostel-style, climate-controlled guest rooms with private bathrooms and free WiFi.
- Banquet and dining space in the communal basement.
- Meeting spaces with access to A/V equipment.
- Kitchenette in the communal basement.
- Year-round programs and activities.
- On-site hiking and biking trails, nearby access to the Shawnee National Forest, River-to-River Trail, and Tunnel Hill State Bike Trail.
- Lakes and ponds on-site for fishing.
- Nearby state parks, wilderness areas, and wineries.
Old Dining Hall: One of Camp’s original structures from 1959, our Old Dining Hall is a charming and rustic space for groups wanting their event to be an intimate experience with the outdoors. The Old Dining Hall is completely screened in, has tables and benches for up to 300 people to accommodate large groups, and is a great covered space while still being outside. There is also free WiFi available in and around this building.
Chapel of North American Martyrs: One of Camp’s original 1959 structures, the Chapel is climate-controlled, seats about 200 people, and is a quaint and rustic place for quiet reflection, group meetings, spiritual services, or to have Mass. Call Camp to request Mass from our Chaplain or bring your own priest; either way, the Chapel is always available for groups to celebrate the Eucharist. There is also free WiFi available in and around this building.
The Grotto: The Grotto is a huge sandstone shelter bluff overlooking Lake St. Isaac. It has seating for 500 people and is perfect for large group events like concerts, spiritual services, or campfires. There is also a large fire pit, the stage/altar is lit by 3 high-powered spotlights, and an electric hook-up is available. Camp’s WiFi network is not available in this area.
The Beach Cabana: The Cabana is a recently constructed gazebo located next to Lake St. Isaac and the Beach Shower House. With benches lining the circumference and a nice sized fire pit in the center with a grill grate and hood, this space is perfect for small to medium groups wanting to gather for any meeting or meal.
New Dining Hall: Built in 2005, our new Dining Hall has seating for up to 500 people and a modern commercial kitchen that cooks up nutritious and delicious meals for groups large and small. Situated on a hill, the new Dining Hall has beautiful views of the surrounding Shawnee Hills and is completely climate-controlled with restroom facilities. There is also free WiFi available in and around this building.