Stage de Go
Stage de Go is a Summer School held (almost) every year in France at the countryside during two weeks, early in July. Only in years, when France hosts the EGC the Stage might get cancelled. Participation is often fully booked - at least in the middle weekend - with often in the range of 200 to 250 people attending.
Their formula is flexible, family-oriented and party-like. Everyone can be both student - of someone about 5 stones stronger - and teacher - of students 5 to 9 stones weaker. Every year they invent new teaching formulas - like 'cache-cache' (hide-hide), where two strong players take turns in explaining their toughts in a game before an audience. Very often professionals teach there. Both Saijo Masataka 9p and Guo Juan 5p taught there several years, sometimes together.
Once, halfway the 1990-ies, both lead a team in a swim-go match. The senseis played a game with the plastic stones of the large demo-board, which were fished from the pool and brought by swimmers to the other side, where the teachers played. The game was left unfinished, when black outswam white and played two moved in a row. They invent new variations of go like this every year: 'Pétango' in 2007 - a bit as a game of pétanque - pushing go-stones into the opponents half of the board. The hit of 1992 was 'ramasse pierres' (clear the stones) - a time-trial of cleaning a board with 360 stones placed at random. (The French Championships were such a success, that Tony Steiniger - the late former EGF-secretary - organised Euro-Champs in 'clean-the-board' one week later at the EGC in Namur.) The atmosphere is party style, with dancing going on all night. But at the midst of the dance floor still two people might be playing a serious game.
In short: a lot of fun, but also an occasion to improve fast.