Retreats

                      September 9-12, 2021
Songwriting Retreat Weekend with Cooking Class and Yoga Classes
2nd Annual Snake Island Weekend Retreat 2021-3.jpg

Return to Snake Island


The second annual Retreat Weekend in a beautiful setting on Lake Simcoe just one hour north of Toronto
 

With James Gordon and Arvi Gosmo


● Songwriting
● Songsharing
● Great Gourmet Food prepared on site from scratch
● Morning Yoga Classes

 

Sept 9th to 12th to 27th 2021

The Weekend (Thursday supper till Sunday Afternoon) includes:

  • An opening reception and song circle

  • 6 delicious and nutritious gourmet meals cooked from scratch on-site by Arvi, including a cooking class on the Saturday

  • A songwriting workshop, and an assignment that will get you started on the song you’ll write.

  • Additional workshops on lyrics, melody and structure, and whatever you’re interested in. Let us know!

  • Friday and Saturday night song circle and jamming

  • Lots of time and inviting spaces for you to work on your song

  • One-on-one time with James and Arvi to nurture along your song

  • Sunday afternoon session where you’ll share your new song, get positive feedback and a recording of it.

  • 3 night’s accommodation

 

Couples welcomed too and camping available if that’s your preference
Free boat ride to the retreat
Participants must be fully vaccinated for Covid
Let us know your dietary concerns. We know you’ll love the food. Coffee, tea, water and juice
will be available throughout the day. Light snacks will also be offered in between meals. Bring
your own alcohol.

 

The Price


575 dollars for the weekend. 625 dollars after August 15th
NO EXPERIENCE or Instrument necessary. You’ll write a great song and others will help.
Payment by e-transfer to james@jamesgordon.ca

 

About the facilitators:


James Gordon is known in Canadian music circles as the “Songwriter’s Songwriter”. He’s
written more than 1500 songs, and released 40 albums solo or with his former band Tamarack.
He was songwriter-in-residence at CBC radio for many years, primarily with Arthur Black’s
show, has led many songwriting retreats, solo or with Katherine Wheatley, and has been
conducting his “Song Doctor” classes for a few years as well. His song “Frobisher Bay” has
been recorded by over 100 artists worldwide, and his song “Mining For Gold”, made famous
by the Cowboy Junkies, has appeared in numerous films.


Arvi Gosmo: After more than 20 years of culinary experience, Arvi Gosmo is a very
knowledgeable and highly successful culinary chef. She has cooked and owned her own
restaurant and established a successful catering business with numerous testimonials to back
up her expertise in the culinary trade.
Where many have developed their cuisine to fit the appetites of their customers, Arvi has
taken it a few steps higher by ensuring the menu is not only tasteful but has been cooked and
presented in a manner that is rich in appearance and when available, locally sourced. She has
also developed healthy and nutritious meal options for those who prefer vegan and gluten
free cuisine.
Her international menus include spicy Asian, tantalizing Mexican, mouth-watering Italian and
even North American. Over the years she has perfected her style, created and implemented a
niche and will wow you with her signature dishes and seasonal specials.

January 13-16, 2022

A winter retreat of songwriting, cooking class and yoga classes in Southern Ontario's beautiful Beaver Valley
Winter Retreat January 2022, Clarksburg Retreat Centre-5.jpg

Arvi Gosmo and James Gordon

present

Clarksburg Winter Retreat

January 13th to 16th, 2022

Our third fun mashup of songwriting, fine food, yoga in a fabulous natural setting

Arvi Gosmo and James Gordon have worked together twice now to create a weekend retreat setting that has turned out to be a very rewarding experience for all of their participants. They’ve been thrilled with the success of these events. Due to popular demand they are adding a WINTER retreat this coming January and they are partnering this time with the stunning Clarksburg Retreat Centre in Southern Ontario’s beautiful Beaver Valley. http://www.clarksburgretreat.com It’s a Covid-safe and welcoming setting ideally suited to what they have been offering. This will be an intimate, exclusive gathering as there are just 12 rooms in this expanded heritage farm house. Here’s what to expect-

 

The Weekend (Thursday dinner until Sunday afternoon) includes:

  • An opening reception and song circle.

  • 6 delicious and nutritious gourmet meals (brunch and dinner) cooked from scratch on-

    site by Arvi, including a cooking class on the Saturday where you!ll create your own meal!

  • A songwriting workshop, an assignment that will get you started on the song you!ll write, and a group songwriting exercise.

  • Additional workshops on lyrics, melody and structure, co-writing, and whatever you!re interested in. Let us know!

  • Friday and Saturday night song circle and jamming.

  • Lots of time and inviting spaces for you to work on your song.

  • One-on-one time with James to nurture along your song.

  • Sunday afternoon session where you!ll share your new song, get positive feedback

    and a recording of it.

  • 3 night"!#accommodation in your own spacious and comfortable room. Couples welcomed too. The Covid restrictions at this site currently state that rooms can only be shared by participants who are related.

  • Nature trails on site and in the adjoining conservation area, snowshoeing, skiing nearby, and a campfire!

    Participants must be fully vaccinated for Covid; proof required in advance. Masks must be worn indoors if in a room with others, except when seated for meals.

 

Let us know your dietary concerns. We know you!ll love the food. Coffee, tea, water and juice will be available throughout the day. Light snacks will also be offered in between brunch and dinner. Bring your own alcohol.

The cost which includes HST
$690 for the weekend, if paid by December 1st. ( 10% discount for couples )

Procrastinator rate $750 after Dec 1st. There are four ensuite rooms with private baths: those are $750 each, $800 after Dec 1st.

 

NO EXPERIENCE or Instrument necessary. You!ll write a great song and others will help. Payment by e-transfer to james@jamesgordon.ca

 

What previous participants have said about our retreats:

I didn't know what to expect especially with COVID and the extra protocols; but I had faith enough to go and I have to tell you what a great job you did as hosts and problem solvers and organizers, teachers and supporters. I was so impressed by the creative atmosphere, the songwriting guidance and encouragement, the food, the camaraderie, the conversations, and the music. Thank you both for sharing your talents and for a truly wonderful weekend of songwriting and community.

-Paul W.

 

The Songwriters Retreat hosted by Arvi and James was everything I’d hoped for and more. As a newbie to the retreat experience and a bit of a hack songwriter, I was a little nervous and not sure how I’d fit in .James exuded a warm, welcoming energy and found a way to make me feel altogether motivated, challenged and incredibly supported through the process of songwriting, song sharing, collaboration and performance. Arvi's extraordinary cooking skills kept me not only well nourished, but delighted to try some delicious fresh new flavours. I took part in one yoga class and found her guidance to be inclusive of all levels and deeply restorative.

The participants were for the most part a group of strangers who's hearts and minds opened to one another and became a wonderfully dynamic rambunctious team!
Loved it and look forward to the next time :)

-Alicia M.

Thank you for organizing, hosting and life-supporting the wonderful four days on Snake Island! What a wonderful adventure and time. It was a warm engaging space in which to create songs and hangout with kindred spirits in-person!
I LOVED being there. You both created such a warm, welcoming, encouraging, open environment in which a WIDE range of people could experience writing their own new songs, writing with others, playing with others, jamming with others, cooking with others, yoga-ing with others, FEASTING with others.

The weekend was a high, both emotionally and physically uplifting (and exhausting afterwards, omg). The yoga sessions helped me immediately and I felt my tendons subtly releasing at moments. I’ve started a 3 Wednesday evenings per month in person yoga class at a Church nearby (as of yesterday). I so much appreciate the gentle nudge that your sessions Arvi gave me to re- engage the yoga my old body needs again.
-Brian J.

The weekend with James and Arvi was amazing! I came to the weekend feeling a little intimidated about my lack of guitar skills, but found that people were accepting and encouraging to me regardless of my level of experience.The leadership, setting and camaraderie all helped to create a fun, challenging and supportive environment that dissolved my writing blocks. I finished a song that I started 10 years ago and left filled up with inspiration to keep on writing and keep on playing! I am SO grateful to James and Arvi for creating this wonderful Snake Island experience!!!

-Kathy McL.

The songwriting workshop held on Snake Island was a truly rewarding experience. The organization and food were truly top class. I would give 5 Michelin stars for sure. Plus the setting and people attending were fun, truly focussed and committed to the learning experience of songwriting. I learned a lot from direct instruction by James and from fellow participants. Arvi the co- host/ yoga teacher/chef instructor/ superb chef made the weekend. Absolutely marvellous!

-Jean D.

This retreat is great in all regards. It will stretch your songwriting muscles, inspire you, and you can’t find a better teacher or more supportive group of musicians anywhere. Go!
-Marion H.

Great fun, great music, great company, great food! Go! -Wendy M.

James and Arvi gave us a great weekend retreat of good music, good food, and good vibes. The feeling of isolation you get from the location focusses your musical efforts. I have written a recordable song at every retreat.
-Neil H.

 

For more information on the retreat centre, browse the website at:

http://www.clarksburgretreat.com/retreat.html

 

About the facilitators:

James Gordon is known in Canadian music circles as the “Songwriter’s Songwriter”. He’s written more than 1500 songs, and released 40 albums solo or with his former band Tamarack. He was songwriter-in-residence at CBC radio for many years, primarily with Arthur Black’s show, has led many songwriting retreats, solo or with Katherine Wheatley, and has been conducting his “Song Doctor” classes for a few years as well. His song “Frobisher Bay” has been recorded by over 100 artists world-wide, and his song “Mining For Gold”, made famous by the Cowboy Junkies, has appeared in numerous films. This year he released a brand new album and his first novel. jamesgordon.ca

Arvi Gosmo: After more than 20 years of culinary experience, Arvi Gosmo is a very knowledgeable and highly successful culinary chef. She has cooked and owned her own restaurant and established a successful catering business with numerous testimonials to back up her expertise in the culinary trade.

Where many have developed their cuisine to fit the appetites of their customers, Arvi has taken it a few steps higher by ensuring the menu is not only tasteful but has been cooked and presented in a manner that is rich in appearance and when available, locally sourced. She has also developed healthy and nutritious meal options for those who prefer vegan and gluten free cuisine.

Her international menus include spicy Asian, tantalizing Mexican, mouth-watering Italian and even North American. Over the years she has perfected her style, created and implemented a niche and will wow you with her signature dishes and seasonal specials. magnoliacatering.ca

 

Arvi and James would love to share this unique experience with you!

More details on request - james@jamesgordon.ca or 519-827-6481