Come kick off the holiday season with a weekend getaway featuring USA Today bestselling author Rachael Bloome! Gather your friends and come to Jacksonville, Illinois for a weekend of fun festivities with our favorite author! Where better to celebrate than in the inn that loosely inspired some of the stories?
Experience the joy of the Christmas season as you get to know author Rachael Bloome. Hosted by Innkeeper Gwenn of Blessings on State Bed & Breakfast, this weekend getaway package for Friday November 18 – 20, 2022 is packed with fun seasonal events shared with the author we all know and love. Special events include a private Q&A Lunch with Rachael and her family and a private Meet & Greet and book signing, along with shopping, dining and decorating a stunning inn Christmas tree. Each registrant will receive a special Blessings Swag Bag specially curated by Rachael and Gwenn.
Quaint and cozy, just like Blessings Bay, Jacksonville, Illinois is a small Midwestern town that believes in the magic of Christmas. We can’t promise snow, but you’ll find beautiful Christmas décor and a warm welcome here. From the beautifully decorated B&B to shops decked out for the holidays, you’ll be swept up in the Christmas spirit. Imagine running into Rachael as you pick up a coffee at Elm City Roastery. (We all know she has an interest in the coffee business!) Maybe you’ll find her Christmas shopping with her Santa Hat discounts at our local businesses like Home Girls, Haberdash, A Collaborative, Times Square Sewing Complex, Our Town Books, The Little Stove and Just Good Trade.
We know for sure that you’ll find her at the private Q&A lunch at K’s Creek and the Book Signing at Blessings on State, as well as other activities throughout the weekend. Check out all the details below and choose the package that’s right for you.
Friday November 18 Events and Activities
Included in 3-day Package, only
3-day Package including lodging Early Bird Rate $339*
3-day Package without lodging Early Bird Rate $139*
Extra Person, shared room Early Bird Rate $49*
Includes shared lodging, JACVB Welcome Bag, Q&A Lunch and Sunday Brunch
- Stop at the Jacksonville Area Convention and Visitors Bureau upon arrival to pick up your Visit Jacksonville visitors bag including shopping and dining discounts.
- Spend Friday Christmas shopping with your Santa Stroll coupons, take a historic walking tour, make an appointment at a local spa, see the sights, and lunch in our local restaurants.
- 3pm or later – Check in at Hampton Inn
- 6pm Jingle Mingle – Join us at Blessings on State Bed & Breakfast to decorate a beautiful inn Christmas tree with special guest Rachael Bloome. A light supper will be provided. Ticket required.
- 8pm Gather at the Blessings on State fire pit for S’mores, singing Christmas carols and stargazing. Ticket required.
- 9pm Depart and get a good night’s sleep.
Saturday November 19 Events and Activities:
Included in 3-day package. ($139* + lodging)
Saturday Only Package Early Bird Rate $79*
- 7am – 10am Continental breakfast at the Hampton Inn for those staying at the hotel.
- Shop Jacksonville’s great locally owned shops located in historic downtown Central Park. Includes JACVB visitors bag and Jacksonville Main Street Santa Stroll hat with discounts.
- 12 Noon – Join us for a private Q&A lunch with Rachael and her family at Kitchen 63 at K’s Creek. Ticket required. Included with your Weekend Getaway, Extra Guest or Saturday Only package.
- 1:30pm – Free Time. Do some Christmas shopping, make an appointment at a local spa, see a movie or see the sights. Use your discounts!
Optional: Head over to Blessings at 2:00pm to decorate Christmas cookies or a Gingerbread House to take home with you. Innkeeper Gwenn will share her secrets for creating decorative Christmas trees to accent your creations.
Cookie decorating kit: $20
Gingerbread House decorating kit $30.
- Dinner on Your Own – use your discounts.
- 6pm Book Signing & Reception with Rachael Bloome at Blessings on State Bed & Breakfast. Enjoy the special Hot Chocolate Bar and Christmas cookies, take a souvenir photo with Rachael, and receive your Swag Bag with a signed copy of Blessings on State Street and other special gifts. Ticket required.
**Additional books will be available for purchase or bring your own to be signed.
- 9pm Depart and Get a good night’s sleep.
Sunday November 20 Events and Activities:
Included in 3-day package and Extra Guest package, only. ($139* + lodging.)
- Holiday Brunch in the formal dining room at Blessings on State Bed & Breakfast. Seatings start at 10:00am. Ticket required.
- 12 Noon Check out of your hotel and depart
- Safe travels home!
- 9:45am Listen to a reading of the Christmas Story from Luke chapter 2,
Book Signing, only $39*
Saturday, November 19 at 6pm
Book Signing & Reception with Rachael Bloome at Blessings on State Bed & Breakfast. Enjoy hot chocolate and cookies, take a souvenir photo with Rachael, and receive your Swag Bag with a signed copy of Blessings on State Street and other gifts.
**Additional books will be available for purchase or bring your own to be signed.
Drive in each day or stay overnight in Jacksonville. Accommodations will be graciously provided by the Jacksonville Hampton Inn and $100 nightly rates are for double queen or king rooms, based on availability. The Hampton Inn offers free Wi-Fi and complimentary parking. Each room reservation will include a Blessings hotel gift bag with special gifts for rest and relaxation. Additional nights may be available at the event rate. Please call or Email innkeeper Gwenn to check additional availability.
Come join us for our Rachael Bloome Reader’s Retreat in the heart of the Midwest! Availability is limited, so please make your reservation as soon as possible. Every paid registration will include “Inability to Attend” insurance coverage at no extra charge. We would hate to see you miss our events, but for your peace of mind this policy will refund 100% of your paid registration and event fees if you are unable to attend our event due to a reason covered under the policy. (Travel fees are not covered.) See link for details. Your coverage starts on the day you pay your final registration fees and ends on the first day of the event.
You will receive payment instructions when you submit your registration form. A $39 non-refundable deposit will hold your package and final payments must be submitted before October 7, 2022, after which all prices will increase by 10%. After that date all packages will require 100% payment when booked. All package prices include applicable taxes. You will receive a Welcome Letter with your event itinerary within 10 days and in early October you will receive an invoice for your remaining balance due.
Use the form below to customize your very own Christmas Blessings with Rachael Bloome package! Reserve early to confirm your spot, because availability is limited.
Travel Tip: If using public transportation, be sure to book a refundable fare or a fare with no (or low) change fees. We can never predict weather and flight delays.
Your Welcome Letter will include information about our Blessings Bags for the Midwest Youth Services Porch Light Project. Their program goal is to provide youth age 12+ a safe, warm, clean and trauma-informed space to stay, staffed by professionals. Our Blessings Bags are overnight bags that provide the essentials for at least a week of overnight stays, including pajamas, underwear, socks, bath and hair care items, dental care items, and a personal item – an age-appropriate game, ball, book, etc. (Value is typically around $75.) You may wish to pack an extra bag for your trip or offer a donation!
Complete the form below to RSVP for your preferred package. You will receive payment instructions in your confirmation message.
Blessings on State Bed & Breakfast is an award-winning all-suite inn located in Jacksonville, Illinois. Hospitality is our hallmark. We offer many amenities, including overnight accommodations in a 130-year-old vintage mansion, Wi-Fi, expansive lawn and gardens, all-season fireplaces, and multi-course breakfasts. Come see us! Our reviews reflect that guest satisfaction is a high priority.
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So excited to register for this amazing weekend! Really looking forward to seeing Jacksonville and meeting everyone. This will be a wonderful way to kick off the Holiday season!
We are so excited to have you all come visit us and meet author Rachael Bloome in person!