Old St. Francis School

700 N.W. Bond Street, Bend, OR 97703

Back to school—at our hotel of all hotels in Bend, Oregon!

We now have 41 additional hotel rooms & are taking reservations.

Upcoming Events

Burger Month
Sunday, Feb 19
Debra Arlyn
Wednesday, Feb 22
O’Kanes Garage Series
Friday, Feb 24
Zwickelmania
Saturday, Feb 25

About Old St. Francis School

Back to school—at our hotel of all hotels in Bend, Oregon!

The Old St. Francis School, conveniently located in downtown Bend, was transformed from 1936 Catholic schoolhouse to, in 2004, a hotel complete with classrooms-turned-lodging rooms, a pub, brewery, a movie theater, private meeting/event space, live music bookings, and a fantastic soaking pool that beckons day travelers, shoppers, hikers, skiers and outdoor adventurers alike.

In 2016 we completed two additional buildings - the Art House & Ed house - bringing our total number of guestrooms to 60. Optional amenities include patios, suites and kitchenettes, but all rooms have their own bathrooms.

We honor the property's former life by featuring extensive artwork that pays homage to the history of the school and the surrounding community. Photos, memorabilia, our artists' renderings and students' artwork adorn the walls, making the hotel a unique gallery of sorts. Take note of the unusual custom-made light fixtures and absolutely stunning tile mosaics that surround the soaking pool. And in the Art and Ed Houses, wander slowly to discover secret hallways, secret rooms and a secret bar!

Old St. Francis School allows pets on the side patios and in hotel rooms for a $15 fee.

Old St. Francis School Guestrooms

Check-in is at 3 p.m.; check-out is at 11 a.m.
Same day reservations must be made by calling the hotel.

These two new buildings are now open & taking reservations: 

Ed House
photoFeaturing 17 guestrooms, each pays tribute to the school's legacy of outstanding educators. Wander the hallways on the first and second floor, and see if you happen upon the secret rooms. 
Art House
photoFeaturing 24 guestrooms, each celebrating the work of our McMenamins artists by offering a glimpse into our artists' inspirations and journeys with McMenamins. Find the mysterious secret doorways, and you'll be led to discover beacons of light and art.

Old St. Francis School Lodging Packages

Check-in is at 3 p.m.; check-out is at 11 a.m.
Same day reservations must be made by calling the hotel.

McMenamins Frequent Guest Program

Every one of your overnight visits at our ten hotels count toward a free stay!  And you can accrue as many points for reward nights as you are able - there are no limits.

Please note: We are unable to issue points for reservations made through Expedia and Booking.com. For best results, book directly through mcmenamins.com or by calling our hotels.

How does it work?

  • First, create or update your profile in our online reservations system and follow the prompts to join the Frequent Guest Program; you'll receive monthly email reminders about the program.
  • Stay with us! Points are automatically rewarded 72 hours after check out - you'll receive 100 points per night in rooms with a common bath and 150 points per night in rooms with a private bath.  Your accrued points can be viewed at any time in your online profile. Please note: points accrued during your stay are not available for immediate redemption.
  • When you've accrued 600 points or more, availability search results on our online system will include a "600 point" rate for rooms with a common or shared bath (based on availability). Choose this rate to redeem your points. Add-ons, like our Romance Packages will still be available at regular prices.
  • When you've accrued 900 points or more, availability search results on our online system will include a "900 point" rate for rooms with a private bath (based on availability.  Please note some of our hotel properties only have private bath options).  Choose this rate to redeem your points. Add-ons, like our Romance Packages will still be available at regular prices.
  • You may also book redemption nights by phone or in person for future stays.

Rules

  • This offer is for individual bookings only; the offer does not apply to contracted groups or conferences.
  • All of your qualifying nights must be booked under the same guest profile for points to accrue correctly.
  • Only 1 room per night is accruable.
  • You must be a member of the Frequent Guest Program to accrue points and redeem your complimentary stays.
  • Qualifying nights begin the day you sign up!
  • The free room is based on a queen-size room.  Family Rooms at Edgefield and the Parish House at Old. St. Francis do not apply.
  • Based on availability; blackout dates may apply. No credit for "no-shows."
  • Hostel stays, reward nights and free or sponsored promotional stays are excluded from earning points in the program.
  • After 5 years of inactivity, your profile points and any reward nights are lost.

Any questions can be sent to loyalty@mcmenamins.com.
Please note: All rules are subject to change.

Parking & Policies

Parking:

Limited onsite parking is available for all Old St. Francis guests. All parking is first come first served and may be used by both overnight guests and day visitors alike.

Hotel Guests:
There is a loading zone available for overnight guests located at the rear entrance to the main lodge in the parking lot off of NW Lava Rd. and NW Louisiana St.

Additional parking options:
The City of Bend public parking garage located 2.5 blocks north of the property on Lava Rd. The first 3 hours are free and all day parking is $5. Parking is free all day Saturday and Sunday.

2 hour on street parking is available immediately surrounding the property, street parking is monitored Monday thru Saturday from 8am to 6pm. Unmonitored street parking is available 2 blocks south of the property.

Policies:

  • Room and package rates are the same for single or double occupancy.
  • A credit card for authorization purposes and ID are required at check-in.
  • Debit cards are accepted, however McMenamins is not responsible for overdrafts caused by holds on your account.
  • Add $15 per person after double occupancy.
  • Children age six and under stay free.
  • For ADA rooms, please contact the hotel directly.
  • Add $15 per pet, per day. Please read our Pet Policy page.
  • Add 12.2% state and county lodging tax to all room rates and overnight packages.
  • Cancellations made less than 48 hours before arrival time are subject to penalty.
  • All overnight packages are subject to availability and are excluded from major holidays.
  • Rates are subject to change.
  • Stay with us often? Join our Frequent Guest Program and earn a night on us!

Surrounding Attractions

While your intent may be to just relax on our property – enjoy some handcrafted ales, sit in the soaking pool, take in a movie – you'll miss out unless you explore downtown Bend and the beautiful surrounding region. Here are just a few ideas...

Outdoor Recreation

  • If you are a skier, Bend is the place to be in winter. Mount Bachelor offers ten alpine lines, six of them high-speed, while Hoodoo Mountain Resort offers a variety of runs – and tubing – for the whole family.

  • If you are a golfer, Bend is the place to be in spring, summer and fall. A few local options include Rivers EdgeEagle's CrestLost Tracks and Widgi Creek.

  • Want to take an early-morning, pre-soaking-pool walk or perhaps a stroll after dinner in the pub? Head to Drake Park, called Bend's most popular outdoor gathering spot.

  • Want to get out and about – but not sure where, when or how? Just arrange for an outing with Wanderlust Tours. They can take you snowshoeing, cave exploring, canoeing and much, much more.

  • Smith Rock is one of the nation's most well-known rock climbing sites. It's worth it to check it out, even if you don't intend to scale its face.

Sightseeing

  • Book one of Wanderlust Tours' Bend Brew Bus Tours -- guests enjoy an insiders' look at four Bend breweries (including our very own Old St. Francis Brewery) and drink complimentary samples along the way. 
  • The High Desert Museum is a critically acclaimed gallery dedicated to examining the wildlife, culture and history of central Oregon.

  • Newberry National Volcanic Monument offers the opportunity to literally drive across the top of an active volcano! That's something to write home about.

  • From the gorgeous heights of Pilot Butte State Scenic Viewpoint (an old cinder cone), you can see panoramic views that include the high desert region and several of the Cascade peaks, such as Three Sisters, Broken Top Mountain and Mount Jefferson.

  • Just a short daytrip away lies the charming 1880s town of Sisters, OR. Stroll the historic Wild West streets for specialty stores and shops.

Shopping

  • Just a block or two from the hotel, the charms of downtown Bend await – shop for clothes, jewelry, shoes, artwork, home décor and much more.

  • For a real treat, visit the Old Mill District – pop into Victoria's Secret, REI, J.Jill, The Children's Place and other stores.

  • Even more retail therapy awaits at the Bend River Promenade – Macy's, TJ Maxx and more.



  •  
  •  

Looking for something else? Go to visitbend.com for all the latest happenings, events and travel suggestions.

Plan Your Trip to Old St. Francis School

Enter your dates to see what's happening during your stay...

Art

You'll be amazed by the abundance of art spanning the hallways and offering a glimpse into the past at Old St. Francis. Whimsical paintings, historical photos, amazing tile work and eclectic fixtures create a virtual museum within the buildings. For an in-depth explanation of the school's history as told through the artwork, a self-guided tour pamphlet is available at the Old St. Francis School front desk.

  • The Apparition of the Muse

    The Apparition of the Muse
  • My Kennedy School

    My Kennedy School
  • I love you, little pig

    I love you, little pig
  • Hoppity Troppity

    Hoppity Troppity
  • Memories of the Journey

    Memories of the Journey
  • The One Who is Looking

    The One Who is Looking
  • Ruby in the Sky

    Ruby in the Sky
  • Beauty and the Bathrooms

    Beauty and the Bathrooms
  • You are Here

    You are Here
  • Ode to the Goddess of Six Arms

    Ode to the Goddess of Six Arms
  • The Bright Students of Kennedy School

    The Bright Students of Kennedy School
  • Ruby's Mirror

    Ruby's Mirror
  • Our Lady of the Pipes

    Our Lady of the Pipes
  • In Good Company

    In Good Company
  • Time of My Life

    Time of My Life
  • Self Portrait en Masse

    Self Portrait en Masse
  • From Your Dreams to Our Walls

    From Your Dreams to Our Walls
  • Harry's Ghost

    Harry's Ghost
  • Good Beer Day

    Good Beer Day
  • Cascades

    Cascades
  • The Magic Lamp of Art

    The Magic Lamp of Art
  • The Curtains Blew Open And It Was The 80's

    The Curtains Blew Open And It Was The 80's
  • Sister Bertha Fritz

    Sister Bertha Fritz
  • Father Bill Coughlin

    Father Bill Coughlin
  • Donna Lutzky

    Donna Lutzky
  • Sister Jane Hibbard

    Sister Jane Hibbard
  • Father Luke Sheehan

    Father Luke Sheehan
  • Sister Farroel Richardson

    Sister Farroel Richardson
  • Sister Mildred Marie

    Sister Mildred Marie
  • Sister Sebastion

    Sister Sebastion
  • Maury Douglass

    Maury Douglass
  • Sister Pat McKenzie

    Sister Pat McKenzie
  • Kathleen Hepner

    Kathleen Hepner
  • Sonia Jager

    Sonia Jager
  • Sister Aloysia Maria

    Sister Aloysia Maria
  • Wilma Hens

    Wilma Hens
  • Mary Ann Ricketts

    Mary Ann Ricketts

History

Opened in 1936, the St. Francis School was the first-ever parochial school established in Central Oregon. It was the realization of a long-held dream of parish priest Father Luke Sheehan.

Father Luke, who hailed from County Cork, Ireland, had come to Bend in 1910 as part of a mission to the "wilds" of Oregon made by the Irish Capuchin order of Catholic priests. Father Luke established and cultivated the St. Francis parish, initially by trekking hundreds of miles on horseback or on foot, to meet with those first, widely dispersed parishioners. Among this pious group were many of the priest's countrymen, Irish immigrants who had converged upon the high desert mostly to work as sheepherders.

Father Luke's nephew, Dominic O'Connor, was also a Capuchin priest, who like his uncle, came to Bend. Father Dominic, though, made quite a name for himself before coming to Oregon. In fact, in the annals of Irish history, Father Dominic O'Connor is heralded as a national hero. His deeds done in support of the Irish Republic are celebrated in text, verse and song. After coming to Bend in 1922, Father Dominic lived a much quieter life devoted to serving the St. Francis Parish, and more generally, the Baker Diocese. This service firmly established the Irish hero as an important figure within the history of Central Oregon.

All of the groundwork done by Fathers Luke and Dominic and their Capuchin brethren, laid a solid foundation allowing for the school's construction, which ironically came during the economically dire days of the Great Depression. The original brick school building contained four classrooms, with grades one through eight paired two to a room. That first year, there were 145 students enrolled. In years to come, that number soared to more than 300. To accommodate enrollment increases, additions were made to the school in the 1950s and '60s. The first add-on of two classrooms was done in 1953. Seven years later, four more rooms were constructed. Then, in 1968, a spacious new parish center was built along the school's north side to house a gym, stage, meeting rooms and cafeteria.

By all accounts, the nuns who taught at St. Francis, all of whom were of the Sisters of the Holy Names order from Marylhurst University campus south of Portland, were effective teachers; many were taskmasters, and most had a big heart (though some chose not to wear it on their sleeve).

Beginning in the late 1960s, change was afoot. Student uniforms were no longer required and lay teachers began to fill the roster at St. Francis School, and the remaining nuns no longer wore habits. But while the formal look of the faculty and student body was relaxed, the focus on quality education remained constant.

In 2000, the St. Francis School relocated to a newly constructed modern campus on the northeastern section of the city. The old downtown property, which now included four old bungalow houses on the back end of the lot, passed to McMenamins, who renovated and reopened the landmark as the Old St. Francis School in November 2004.

Hold your Private Event at Old St. Francis School

Weddings  Meetings  Social Events

We have indoor event spaces that accommodate up to 120 guests year-round – for your next meeting, a wedding, special celebration or function. Our staff works to make your vision come to life, creating a memorable event within budget.

In addition, we have comfortable hotel guestrooms with ensuite bathrooms and TVs; a restaurant and several small bars; a brewery; and soaking pool for relaxing after your event.

The Old St. Francis School is located just 10 minutes from the Bend Municipal Airport, and is situated in the middle of downtown Bend.

Back to school—at our hotel of all hotels in Bend, Oregon!

We now have 41 additional hotel rooms & are taking reservations.

Upcoming Events

Burger Month
Sunday, Feb 19
Debra Arlyn
Wednesday, Feb 22
O’Kanes Garage Series
Friday, Feb 24
Zwickelmania
Saturday, Feb 25
Property
Adults
Children
Rate
  • About Old St. Francis School

    Back to school—at our hotel of all hotels in Bend, Oregon!

    The Old St. Francis School, conveniently located in downtown Bend, was transformed from 1936 Catholic schoolhouse to, in 2004, a hotel complete with classrooms-turned-lodging rooms, a pub, brewery, a movie theater, private meeting/event space, live music bookings, and a fantastic soaking pool that beckons day travelers, shoppers, hikers, skiers and outdoor adventurers alike.

    In 2016 we completed two additional buildings - the Art House & Ed house - bringing our total number of guestrooms to 60. Optional amenities include patios, suites and kitchenettes, but all rooms have their own bathrooms.

    We honor the property's former life by featuring extensive artwork that pays homage to the history of the school and the surrounding community. Photos, memorabilia, our artists' renderings and students' artwork adorn the walls, making the hotel a unique gallery of sorts. Take note of the unusual custom-made light fixtures and absolutely stunning tile mosaics that surround the soaking pool. And in the Art and Ed Houses, wander slowly to discover secret hallways, secret rooms and a secret bar!

    Old St. Francis School allows pets on the side patios and in hotel rooms for a $15 fee.

    • Old St. Francis School Guestrooms

      Check-in is at 3 p.m.; check-out is at 11 a.m.
      Same day reservations must be made by calling the hotel.

      These two new buildings are now open & taking reservations: 

      Ed House
      photoFeaturing 17 guestrooms, each pays tribute to the school's legacy of outstanding educators. Wander the hallways on the first and second floor, and see if you happen upon the secret rooms. 
      Art House
      photoFeaturing 24 guestrooms, each celebrating the work of our McMenamins artists by offering a glimpse into our artists' inspirations and journeys with McMenamins. Find the mysterious secret doorways, and you'll be led to discover beacons of light and art.
    • Old St. Francis School Lodging Packages

      Check-in is at 3 p.m.; check-out is at 11 a.m.
      Same day reservations must be made by calling the hotel.
    • McMenamins Frequent Guest Program

      Every one of your overnight visits at our ten hotels count toward a free stay!  And you can accrue as many points for reward nights as you are able - there are no limits.

      Please note: We are unable to issue points for reservations made through Expedia and Booking.com. For best results, book directly through mcmenamins.com or by calling our hotels.

      How does it work?

      • First, create or update your profile in our online reservations system and follow the prompts to join the Frequent Guest Program; you'll receive monthly email reminders about the program.
      • Stay with us! Points are automatically rewarded 72 hours after check out - you'll receive 100 points per night in rooms with a common bath and 150 points per night in rooms with a private bath.  Your accrued points can be viewed at any time in your online profile. Please note: points accrued during your stay are not available for immediate redemption.
      • When you've accrued 600 points or more, availability search results on our online system will include a "600 point" rate for rooms with a common or shared bath (based on availability). Choose this rate to redeem your points. Add-ons, like our Romance Packages will still be available at regular prices.
      • When you've accrued 900 points or more, availability search results on our online system will include a "900 point" rate for rooms with a private bath (based on availability.  Please note some of our hotel properties only have private bath options).  Choose this rate to redeem your points. Add-ons, like our Romance Packages will still be available at regular prices.
      • You may also book redemption nights by phone or in person for future stays.

      Rules

      • This offer is for individual bookings only; the offer does not apply to contracted groups or conferences.
      • All of your qualifying nights must be booked under the same guest profile for points to accrue correctly.
      • Only 1 room per night is accruable.
      • You must be a member of the Frequent Guest Program to accrue points and redeem your complimentary stays.
      • Qualifying nights begin the day you sign up!
      • The free room is based on a queen-size room.  Family Rooms at Edgefield and the Parish House at Old. St. Francis do not apply.
      • Based on availability; blackout dates may apply. No credit for "no-shows."
      • Hostel stays, reward nights and free or sponsored promotional stays are excluded from earning points in the program.
      • After 5 years of inactivity, your profile points and any reward nights are lost.

      Any questions can be sent to loyalty@mcmenamins.com.
      Please note: All rules are subject to change.

    • Parking & Policies

      Parking:

      Limited onsite parking is available for all Old St. Francis guests. All parking is first come first served and may be used by both overnight guests and day visitors alike.

      Hotel Guests:
      There is a loading zone available for overnight guests located at the rear entrance to the main lodge in the parking lot off of NW Lava Rd. and NW Louisiana St.

      Additional parking options:
      The City of Bend public parking garage located 2.5 blocks north of the property on Lava Rd. The first 3 hours are free and all day parking is $5. Parking is free all day Saturday and Sunday.

      2 hour on street parking is available immediately surrounding the property, street parking is monitored Monday thru Saturday from 8am to 6pm. Unmonitored street parking is available 2 blocks south of the property.

      Policies:

      • Room and package rates are the same for single or double occupancy.
      • A credit card for authorization purposes and ID are required at check-in.
      • Debit cards are accepted, however McMenamins is not responsible for overdrafts caused by holds on your account.
      • Add $15 per person after double occupancy.
      • Children age six and under stay free.
      • For ADA rooms, please contact the hotel directly.
      • Add $15 per pet, per day. Please read our Pet Policy page.
      • Add 12.2% state and county lodging tax to all room rates and overnight packages.
      • Cancellations made less than 48 hours before arrival time are subject to penalty.
      • All overnight packages are subject to availability and are excluded from major holidays.
      • Rates are subject to change.
      • Stay with us often? Join our Frequent Guest Program and earn a night on us!
    • Surrounding Attractions

      While your intent may be to just relax on our property – enjoy some handcrafted ales, sit in the soaking pool, take in a movie – you'll miss out unless you explore downtown Bend and the beautiful surrounding region. Here are just a few ideas...

      Outdoor Recreation

      • If you are a skier, Bend is the place to be in winter. Mount Bachelor offers ten alpine lines, six of them high-speed, while Hoodoo Mountain Resort offers a variety of runs – and tubing – for the whole family.

      • If you are a golfer, Bend is the place to be in spring, summer and fall. A few local options include Rivers EdgeEagle's CrestLost Tracks and Widgi Creek.

      • Want to take an early-morning, pre-soaking-pool walk or perhaps a stroll after dinner in the pub? Head to Drake Park, called Bend's most popular outdoor gathering spot.

      • Want to get out and about – but not sure where, when or how? Just arrange for an outing with Wanderlust Tours. They can take you snowshoeing, cave exploring, canoeing and much, much more.

      • Smith Rock is one of the nation's most well-known rock climbing sites. It's worth it to check it out, even if you don't intend to scale its face.

      Sightseeing

      • Book one of Wanderlust Tours' Bend Brew Bus Tours -- guests enjoy an insiders' look at four Bend breweries (including our very own Old St. Francis Brewery) and drink complimentary samples along the way. 
      • The High Desert Museum is a critically acclaimed gallery dedicated to examining the wildlife, culture and history of central Oregon.

      • Newberry National Volcanic Monument offers the opportunity to literally drive across the top of an active volcano! That's something to write home about.

      • From the gorgeous heights of Pilot Butte State Scenic Viewpoint (an old cinder cone), you can see panoramic views that include the high desert region and several of the Cascade peaks, such as Three Sisters, Broken Top Mountain and Mount Jefferson.

      • Just a short daytrip away lies the charming 1880s town of Sisters, OR. Stroll the historic Wild West streets for specialty stores and shops.

      Shopping

      • Just a block or two from the hotel, the charms of downtown Bend await – shop for clothes, jewelry, shoes, artwork, home décor and much more.

      • For a real treat, visit the Old Mill District – pop into Victoria's Secret, REI, J.Jill, The Children's Place and other stores.

      • Even more retail therapy awaits at the Bend River Promenade – Macy's, TJ Maxx and more.



      •  
      •  

      Looking for something else? Go to visitbend.com for all the latest happenings, events and travel suggestions.

    • Plan Your Trip to Old St. Francis School

      Enter your dates to see what's happening during your stay...

    • Art

      You'll be amazed by the abundance of art spanning the hallways and offering a glimpse into the past at Old St. Francis. Whimsical paintings, historical photos, amazing tile work and eclectic fixtures create a virtual museum within the buildings. For an in-depth explanation of the school's history as told through the artwork, a self-guided tour pamphlet is available at the Old St. Francis School front desk.

      • The Apparition of the Muse

        The Apparition of the Muse
      • My Kennedy School

        My Kennedy School
      • I love you, little pig

        I love you, little pig
      • Hoppity Troppity

        Hoppity Troppity
      • Memories of the Journey

        Memories of the Journey
      • The One Who is Looking

        The One Who is Looking
      • Ruby in the Sky

        Ruby in the Sky
      • Beauty and the Bathrooms

        Beauty and the Bathrooms
      • You are Here

        You are Here
      • Ode to the Goddess of Six Arms

        Ode to the Goddess of Six Arms
      • The Bright Students of Kennedy School

        The Bright Students of Kennedy School
      • Ruby's Mirror

        Ruby's Mirror
      • Our Lady of the Pipes

        Our Lady of the Pipes
      • In Good Company

        In Good Company
      • Time of My Life

        Time of My Life
      • Self Portrait en Masse

        Self Portrait en Masse
      • From Your Dreams to Our Walls

        From Your Dreams to Our Walls
      • Harry's Ghost

        Harry's Ghost
      • Good Beer Day

        Good Beer Day
      • Cascades

        Cascades
      • The Magic Lamp of Art

        The Magic Lamp of Art
      • The Curtains Blew Open And It Was The 80's

        The Curtains Blew Open And It Was The 80's
      • Sister Bertha Fritz

        Sister Bertha Fritz
      • Father Bill Coughlin

        Father Bill Coughlin
      • Donna Lutzky

        Donna Lutzky
      • Sister Jane Hibbard

        Sister Jane Hibbard
      • Father Luke Sheehan

        Father Luke Sheehan
      • Sister Farroel Richardson

        Sister Farroel Richardson
      • Sister Mildred Marie

        Sister Mildred Marie
      • Sister Sebastion

        Sister Sebastion
      • Maury Douglass

        Maury Douglass
      • Sister Pat McKenzie

        Sister Pat McKenzie
      • Kathleen Hepner

        Kathleen Hepner
      • Sonia Jager

        Sonia Jager
      • Sister Aloysia Maria

        Sister Aloysia Maria
      • Wilma Hens

        Wilma Hens
      • Mary Ann Ricketts

        Mary Ann Ricketts
    • History

      Opened in 1936, the St. Francis School was the first-ever parochial school established in Central Oregon. It was the realization of a long-held dream of parish priest Father Luke Sheehan.

      Father Luke, who hailed from County Cork, Ireland, had come to Bend in 1910 as part of a mission to the "wilds" of Oregon made by the Irish Capuchin order of Catholic priests. Father Luke established and cultivated the St. Francis parish, initially by trekking hundreds of miles on horseback or on foot, to meet with those first, widely dispersed parishioners. Among this pious group were many of the priest's countrymen, Irish immigrants who had converged upon the high desert mostly to work as sheepherders.

      Father Luke's nephew, Dominic O'Connor, was also a Capuchin priest, who like his uncle, came to Bend. Father Dominic, though, made quite a name for himself before coming to Oregon. In fact, in the annals of Irish history, Father Dominic O'Connor is heralded as a national hero. His deeds done in support of the Irish Republic are celebrated in text, verse and song. After coming to Bend in 1922, Father Dominic lived a much quieter life devoted to serving the St. Francis Parish, and more generally, the Baker Diocese. This service firmly established the Irish hero as an important figure within the history of Central Oregon.

      All of the groundwork done by Fathers Luke and Dominic and their Capuchin brethren, laid a solid foundation allowing for the school's construction, which ironically came during the economically dire days of the Great Depression. The original brick school building contained four classrooms, with grades one through eight paired two to a room. That first year, there were 145 students enrolled. In years to come, that number soared to more than 300. To accommodate enrollment increases, additions were made to the school in the 1950s and '60s. The first add-on of two classrooms was done in 1953. Seven years later, four more rooms were constructed. Then, in 1968, a spacious new parish center was built along the school's north side to house a gym, stage, meeting rooms and cafeteria.

      By all accounts, the nuns who taught at St. Francis, all of whom were of the Sisters of the Holy Names order from Marylhurst University campus south of Portland, were effective teachers; many were taskmasters, and most had a big heart (though some chose not to wear it on their sleeve).

      Beginning in the late 1960s, change was afoot. Student uniforms were no longer required and lay teachers began to fill the roster at St. Francis School, and the remaining nuns no longer wore habits. But while the formal look of the faculty and student body was relaxed, the focus on quality education remained constant.

      In 2000, the St. Francis School relocated to a newly constructed modern campus on the northeastern section of the city. The old downtown property, which now included four old bungalow houses on the back end of the lot, passed to McMenamins, who renovated and reopened the landmark as the Old St. Francis School in November 2004.

  • Hold your Private Event at Old St. Francis School

    Weddings  Meetings  Social Events

    We have indoor event spaces that accommodate up to 120 guests year-round – for your next meeting, a wedding, special celebration or function. Our staff works to make your vision come to life, creating a memorable event within budget.

    In addition, we have comfortable hotel guestrooms with ensuite bathrooms and TVs; a restaurant and several small bars; a brewery; and soaking pool for relaxing after your event.

    The Old St. Francis School is located just 10 minutes from the Bend Municipal Airport, and is situated in the middle of downtown Bend.

@mcmenamins