Stepping Stones offers these suggestions for group organizers.
• Date Selection: Weekday group visits are highly recommended (as opposed to Saturdays). Poll your group for their top three preferred dates so we can see which is available.
• Planning & Coordination: Give yourself plenty of planning time. For groups of 50 or more, we suggest starting the process at least six months in advance. Consider asking friends to help.
• Sign-Up List & Ticketing: We suggest using a sign-up list to determine the number of people who are likely to participate. Additionally, some planners issue tickets and/or charge a registration fee that can include expenses such as gas, tolls, event scholarships, and coffee. The registration fee may also include a suggested donation for Stepping Stones (suggested $10 or more per person). Start a wait list once the sign reaches matches the number of spots reserved with us.
• Day of Event Schedule: Your group’s visit can begin at 12 noon with the tour at 1 p.m. Groups conclude their visits by 3 p.m. Arrival at noon makes the trip less rushed. It provides time for outdoor photography, fellowship, picnicking, and viewing the orientation display and shop.
• Fees for Larger Groups: Depending on group size and transportation plans, rental of port-o-sans and/or rental of shuttles to off-site parking may be required. Prior to confirming a reservation, the group leader will be advised of any required fees and forms.
• Public Transportation: See Directions and Parking for air, train, bus, and taxi options.
• Carpooling: Carpooling (at least 4 persons to a vehicle) in cars, SUVs, and vans is highly recommended and typically most affordable because visitor buses are not permitted to enter Stepping Stones’ neighborhood. Identify group members able to commit to drive. Some groups meet up ahead of time to carpool from their hometown or a restaurant near Stepping Stones. On most Saturdays, the regular parking spots in the Bedford Hills Train Station commuter lot off 1 Railroad Avenue, Bedford Hills, NY, 10507 are open for use, but avoid the spaces that require special needs or taxi permits.
• Passenger Vans: If carpooling is not an option, consider making the trip in rental vans that accommodate up to 20 passengers. Determine if you will use paid drivers or volunteers. Our transportation form will be required with insurance documentation in advance to confirm your visit.
• Off-Site Bus Parking with Paid Local Shuttle: Visitor buses may not enter or park in the neighborhood. If a bus is required, then off-site parking and shuttle arrangements must be made at least 60 days in advance. A fee (typically around $350) will be charged for the rental of smaller vehicles to shuttle the group from the off-site location where your bus is parked.