Thursday, January 4th

6:00 pm   Casual Dinner

Location: Restaurant of Your Choice

People who arrive early for Awakening can make reservations at a hotel cafe or Sea Island restaurant. We often dine in groups so let us know if you want to be included in a block of reservations. This is a “Dutch” treat where everyone is responsible for their own expenses. The Cloister restaurants reservation number is: 855-572-4975 

7:45 pm   Fireside Chat

Location: The Spanish Lounge

Early attenders will gather for a “Fireside Chat” led by one of our favorite conservatives, former Attorney General Ed Meese. General Meese will have Steve Hayes up front to help moderate. Join us for coffee, cookies, and lively discussion. This is a “No Holds Barred” session where the subject(s) are chosen by you, the participant. Discuss everything from the terrorism to Constitutional Conservatism to Cultural shifts to Economics: the floor is open for lively dialogue and intrigue.

Friday, January 5th

“Awakening Official Start”

10:00 am - 6:00 pm   Registration

Location: Hospitality Desk, Sapelo Room

Awakening has a long tradition of swapping books. There will be a table where you may bring up to three of your favorite books (fiction or non-fiction) and leave them. On Saturday morning you may choose as many books as you have brought to take home. Some of our most favorite books were found at this table.

10:00 am   Awakening Golf Tournament

Location: Seaside Golf Course            

Tee times begin at 10:00 am and a complimentary shuttle will run from the Cloister to the Lodge every 30 minutes. Join us for a competitive yet friendly round of golf. Sea Island famed Seaside course is known for its natural beauty and spectacular marsh and water vistas.  

Art Presentation

Location: Cumberland Room

A featuring sculptor is Anthony Quickle of St. Simons Island. Quickle's sculptures can be found in public, private, & corporate collections around the world. His completed works include bronze portrait busts, larger than life-size monuments, and stone works of all sizes. Although he works primarily by commission, his works may be found in select galleries across the United States.

The art exhibition will be a mix of styles and techniques with the dramatic realist paintings of Professor Jeffery A. LeMieux, the contemplative paintings of rising artist Ezra Thompson.

Stop and take in the breath-taking creations all of these artists are exhibiting and much is for sale.

12:30 pm   Luncheon

Keynote: Charlie Kirk: Kirk backers swear he’s the future of conservativism and he is only just old enough to drink. Founder and Executive Director of Turning Point, USA.

Location: Cloister Ballroom II

1:45  - 3:30 pm Brain Health: Remarkable Discoveries for Your “Personal Computer’s” Workings and Ways to Navigate Brain Malfunctions.

Dr. Kevin Murname: Dr. Murname is an Assistant Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences at Mercer Medical School.His research group is focused on the etiology, consequences and treatment of disorders of the central nervous system.

Location: Clubroom

Dr. Murname will present a workshop on the health of the brain and the central nervous system; ways to maintain a “working brain” and then also enlighten us on the new discoveries and advancement in treating brain disorders such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.  This workshop promises to make us more aware of practical steps to brain health and the hope of navigating disorders.

3:45 pm   The Cloister Cinema (Beach Club Location)

 “Gosnell”, the movie, tells the story of Dr. Kermit Gosnell the infamous abortion doctor from Philadelphia who is serving three life terms for murder. He killed babies that arrived alive after attempting to abort them. He ran the clinic for over 30 years. According to the Grand Jury, the true numbers of his victims must run into the thousands. 

The movie was funded by a record-breaking crowdfunding campaign which raised over $2.1m in just 45 days.  

6:00 pm   Welcome Reception for Awakening First-Timers

Location: Cloister Patio 

6:30 pm   Plenary Welcome Reception

Location: Cloister Patio                

Dress for this event is what we call in the South as “Sunday” dress. Men wear sport coats and ties and women wear dresses or slacks. The children can wear any attire that their parents deem appropriate.

7:00 pm   Family Dinner

Keynote: The Honorable Tom Price. “Fundamental Principles—Never Out of Style”

Location: Cloister Ballroom

At this dinner the children will sell stock options for $1(the maximum purchase is 5 shares) for their capitalist endeavor on Saturday. Larry Kudlow has said that this was his best stock purchase for the year, so bring your cash and be prepared to make a little money off your investment.

9:15 pm   Dessert Extraordinaire and Coffee

Location: Cloister Foyer II

Enjoy a decadent assortment of desserts including whipped cream topped cakes and pies, warm cookies, ice cream and more.


Saturday, January 6th

7:00 - 8:30 am   Awakening Breakfast Buffet

Location: Cloister Ballroom II

This breakfast offers early discussion and meeting and greeting. The attire is resort casual.

8:30 am   Book Swap Start

Location: Sapelo Room

Bring a book to swap, fiction or non-fiction. You may take home the same number of books you bring. Happy Reading!!!


8:45 - 10:30 am

Healthcare: What is the Solution?

Edmund Haislmaier, Senior Research Fellow,The Heritage Foundation

Doug Badger, Mercatus Center, George Mason University

Bob Moffit, The Heritage Foundation (Moderator)

Location: Clubroom 

Changing Demographics: Mass Immigration’s Challenges to Europe’s Common Culture

Jeffrey Gedmin, Senior Fellow, Georgetown University

 Michael Collins, Awakening Advisory Board Member (Moderator)

Location: Cloister Ballroom I

Teen Discussion:

Charlie Kirk, Founder and Executive Director of Turning Point, USA

Location: Summit Room

In this session, we will explore basic principles of conservative thought and discuss why they remain important pillars in our society.  Middle and high school students will find this to be a fun and engaging way to talk through important ideas in a casual environment. Come share your perspective and learn how these ideas will impact your future!

Young Capitalist Corporation (Children 3-11 years old)

Ernest Taylor

Location: Oglethorpe Room

Our young capitalists will explore what it takes to build a company. Ernest Taylor will help you name your company/decide on costs/advertise and “manufacture” your goodies.  At the luncheon. you will sell your cookies and make some cash. Sunday, we will pay a good dividend to our stockholders.


10:45 am - 12:30 pm

Political Forecasting: Issues with the Midterms

Whit Ayres, North Star Opinion Research

Steve Hayes, Editor in Chief The Weekly Standard

Location: Clubroom

Europe and Russia: What are Putin’s Intentions?

Dr. Nile Gardiner, Director, Margaret Thatcher Center and Bernard and Barbara Lomas Fellow, The Heritage Foundation

Ernest Taylor (Moderator)

Location: Cloister I

Who Owns the Moon?

Teen Specific

Dr. Deborah Barnhart: CEO US Space and Rocket Center

Exploring the political, strategic and commercial issues around space admiralty law and who owns the Lunar surface and asteroids.

Location: The Summit Room

Children’s Activity: Past and Present

Children (3-11 years of age)

Stephanie Carpenter, Awakening Teacher Extraordinaire

Gretchen Hagen, Awakening Teacher Extraordinaire

Step into the past and discover how life has changed since colonial days.  A fun activity planned for all!

Location: Oglethorpe Room

12:30 pm   Low-Country Lunch

Location:  Mizner Ballroom
We will have a low-country lunch with a multitude of friends!  This is your opportunity to purchase cookies from the American Cookie Company that the children have formed.  They will be donned in chef hats offering their wares. It is difficult to say “no” to them. 


1:50 - 3:55 pm

Tax Reform: “The Rich and The Poor”

Curtis Dubay, Former Research Fellow, The Heritage Foundation

Dan Mitchell, Senior Fellow, Cato Institute

Dr. Bob Moffit, (Moderator)

Location:  Cloister I 

Judicial Interpretations: Originalism and Natural Law, In Conflict or Woven Together?

Ed Whelan, President, The Ethics and Public Policy Center
Dr. Hadley Arkes, Professor Emeritus Amherst College and Founder of the James Wilson Institute on Natural Rights & the American Founding

Michael Collins, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP (Moderator)

Location: Clubroom

World Changers: Discovering How You Can Impact the World 

Lucas Ramirez, Awakening Advisory Board, Executive Director, The Gathering Place
Thea Ramirez, Awakening Advisory Board, Founder/CEO of Adoption Share
Location: Summit Room

Children’s Activity: American Symbols

(Ages 3-11)

Stephanie Carpenter, Awakening Teacher Extraordinaire

Gretchen Hagen Awakening Teacher Extraordinaire

Location: Oglethorpe Room

Courage, Purity and Truth are for what our flag stands.  America has many symbols and each show how special our country is. We are going to make and discover for what a few of our nations symbols stand.  

6:30 pm Reception

Location: Cloister II Foyer

This reception’s attire is black-tie optional. This is a lovely occasion to “dress up” and enjoy the evening with conservative friends. Teens welcome.

7:00 pm Black Tie Dinner

Keynote Speaker: Heather Johnson, Executive Director of U.S.Israel Education Association

Location: Cloister Ballroom

Israel remains the center of focus for this generation and the countless others that have preceded us. Mrs. Johnson will help us understand the implications of Jerusalem being recognized as the capital of Israel and other pertinent innuendos that we might generally miss in these diplomatic maneuvers.

Great American Award Presentation:

Awakening’s Great American Award will be announced, sponsored in memory of William Amos, Senior, a co-founder of Aflac.

6:30 pm Children’s Pizza and Party (Ages 3-11 with sitter)

Featuring: Sean Driscoll, Internationally Acclaimed Entertainer

Location: Oglethorpe Room

Children are invited to an informal pizza party, including entertainment. If there was ever an entertainer for children not to miss it is Sean Driscoll.  Sean is a master storyteller, musician and spreads joy as if it were candy.

Sunday, January 7th

7:45 - 8:30 am   Church Service

Location: The Cloister Chapel

This non-denominational church service is led by Lucas Ramirez. Lucas is on the Awakening Advisory Board and Executive Director of The Gathering Place which is a community-based ministry that has served the youth of Brunswick and the Golden Isles since 1981. Every year we come away grateful we attended this service.

8:00 am Coffee & Continental Breakfast

Location: Cloister Foyer


9:00 am -10:45 am

Economic Forecasting: Can the U.S. Return to a Five/Six Percent Growth Rate?

Dan Mitchell, Senior Fellow, Cato Institute

Veronique de Rugy, Senior Research Fellow,Mercatus Center, George Mason University

Todd Gardenhire (Moderator)

Location: Clubroom

Putting a Face on the Abortion Issue

Joanna Hyatt, Director of Strategic Partnerships of Live Action

Jill Faith Gerard, Client Services Manager, Coweta Pregnancy Services.

Dr. Wade Horn, (Moderator) 

Children’s Activity: Mad About Science(Ages 3-11)

Stephanie Carpenter, Awakening Teacher Extraordinaire

Gretchen Hagen, Awakening Teacher Extraordinaire

Location: Oglethorpe Room

We will become detectives and discover the mysteries behind finger prints, slime and more.  Can you predict what will happen? 

11:00 am   Family Brunch

Keynote Speaker: Bruce Klingner, Senior Research Fellow, Northeast Asia, Heritage Foundation

Location: Cloister II Ballroom

Now we are all informed and ready to go home but we have one last time to gather and learn.  Bruce Klingner, will deliver our parting talk. Bruce will be helping us understand the North Korean situation…a “hot-spot” in any vernacular

12:00 noon   Awakening 2018 Concludes 


JANUARY 4th, 5th, 6th