Four theatres house the Festival's amazing world-renown repertory company.

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In 2008 David and Karen Mains will once again be leading a travel group to the famed Shakespeare Festival in beautiful Stratford, Ontario, Canada. The Festival’s reputation guarantees that each season is stellar. This experience is for everyone serious about a dialogue between culture and faith. A rare event: an enchanting community filled with perennial and herb gardens and old stone architecture, a week of guided conversations around dramatic themes, and a world-class theatre (the best repertory company in the North American) at its heart.

For more than 30 summers, the Maines have treated their family, friends and (sometimes weary) acquaintances, to this delightful renewing experience. They love nothing better than introducing Stratford to the people who they know will be restored by it! As one friend said this year, “This was really a vacation. I came home rested and refreshed.”

Bring your children if you think they would love to share this experience. The Maines started hauling theirs up to Stratford when they turned 10 years of age.

Richard Monette, who was the Artistic Director of the Festival for 14 seasons, retired last year, so we are eagerly looking to the directions set by the new General Director, Anthony Cimolino. “We’ve made many changes,” he writes, “and all of them—including the central position given to William Shakespeare in our new name and our new logo—reflect the same spirit that moved our founding artists. We’re here to present Shakespeare for the 21st century, complemented by a glorious variety of other repertoire.”

We are looking forward to seeing what Shakespeare for the 21st century might look like.

The town of Stratford, with its beautiful gardens and stone houses, is built around the Avon River.

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  • Sharing morning prayers
  • Breakfast discussions on cultural themes that interact with spiritual faith
  • Laughter and improvisational exercises

Dr. Lori Carrell, one of the
lecturers in our group.

Delightful restaurants and shopping fill time between performances.

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Stratford Costume warehouse: Try something on for size!

A low price of $1100 per person (shared room) or $1400 per person (private room) pays for your theatre tickets, lodging Monday through Friday evenings at one of three delightful bed-and-breakfasts, lectures, opportunities to meet cast members and two special dinners. The size of our group is limited to 25 so reservations will be taken on a first come/first served basis.

A deposit of $500 per person will reserve your place. We ask that this be made by May 31, 2008. You can make your deposit online with a charge card by clicking on the "Make A Reservation" button, or by calling us toll-free at 1-800-828-9625. Or, you can send us your deposit check in the mail payable to Hungry Souls and mailed to Box 30, Wheaton, IL 60189. The balance of your trip payment ($500 per person) must be paid by June 1, 2008. For more questions, e-mail or call: 1-800-828-9625.

Notes: You are responsible for your own travel, but we are more than happy to pick up and drop off people who fly into the London, ON airport. We also started taking our children up to the Shakespeare Festival when they were ten years of age and last year, our 10-year-old grandson sat through all 6 plays and was an eager participant. We are NOT age-specific if you think YOUR child is ready for this.

France Highlights

Monday, July 7

  • 3-5:00 p.m. Arrive at your B&B
  • 6:00 p.m. Dinner to get acquainted and reacquainted at The Olde English Parlour, 101 Wellington.

Tuesday, July 8

  • Free time after B&B breakfast for recovery from travel, shopping, or to show newcomers around Stratford
  • 2:00 p.m. Love’s Labour’s Lost (Shakespeare) Patterson Theatre
  • 8:00 p.m. Cabaret – Avon Theatre – for those who purchased extra tickets

Wednesday, July 9

  • Breakfast discussion at B&B
  • 9:30 a.m. Meet the Festival – Patterson Theatre
  • 2:00 p.m. All’s Well That Ends Well (Shakespeare) – Festival Theatre
  • 7:00 p.m. Pre-show lecture for Romeo and Juliet attendees
  • 8:00 p.m. Romeo and Juliet (Shakespeare) – Festival Theatre or The Trojan Women (Euripides) – Patterson Theatre

Thursday, July 10

  • Breakfast discussion at B&B
  • 11:00 a.m. Private time with actors
  • 2:00 p.m. The Music Man – Avon Theatre
  • 7:00 p.m. Pre-show lecture for Shrew
  • 8:00 p.m. The Taming of the Shrew (Shakespeare) – Festival Theatre

Friday, July 11

  • Breakfast discussion at B&B
  • 9:30 a.m. Meet the Festival – Patterson Theatre
  • 11:30 a.m. Table talk buffet lunch – lecture on Shrew
  • 2:00 p.m. Hamlet (Shakespeare) – Festival Theatre
  • 5:15 p.m. Picnic in the Park
  • 8:15 p.m. Final dessert together

Saturday, July 12

  • Breakfast discussion at B&B
  • Mennonite Market and Art in the Park for those interested
  • Head home refreshed

Ontario Trip Features:

  • A+ seating to 6 plays
  • Lodging for 5 nights in pleasant and hospitable B&B’s
  • Breakfast discussions Tuesday—Saturday
  • Dinner buffet with lecture on Wednesday
  • Meet the Festival (actors and staff) on 3 occasions
  • Morning and evening prayers
  • Walking and talking all week long
  • PLUS enough free time to enjoy the delightful town of Stratford with its antiques and shopping

Stratford is wonderful, but it is the people (and our grand conversations) who really make the journey special. Come join us!