Assistant Head of School Nate Snow wishes WMS families a Happy New Year and fills them in about our Winter Festival Weekend!
Hi WMS Families,
Happy New Year! I hope that the holidays allowed time for you and your child to relax and recharge (I know it doesn’t always work that way). It is really great to have everyone back on campus! The new year is off to an energetic start here at WMS – a nice coating of snow always helps!
This weekend is our Winter Festival, with an amazing array of outdoor and winter-themed activities going on. It kicks off tonight with a ski movie premiere of “No Matter What”, featuring our very own freestyle coach Stacey Rachdorf. Here is a link to the trailer (I do see him in the trailer, but don’t worry: Stacey does not teach our students to do backflips off parking garages). After study hall tonight, we’ll have our annual Winter Festival bonfire overlooking Solar Field. With two years of brush on the pile, this is sure to be a good show.
Tomorrow, after Project Block G, our Boys Basketball team hosts Gould Academy at 2pm. Some students are holding an afternoon freestyle “rail jam” on the WMS terrain park on Hood’s Hill. Later, Ben Moss is taking a group of students down to Loon for some snow tubing. The evening winds down (or cranks up?) with the “Ice Dance”, a formal dance put on by the school’s Social Committee.
On Sunday, students have a special opportunity to learn some telemark ski skills. Our Telemark Ski Team coach, Ryan Aldrich, has arranged a workshop for any interested students with Sarah Carley, who is the youngest member of the US National Telemark Team (and who happens to hail from NH). The US Telemark Ski Team is very interested in doing outreach and is working hard to promote telemark and bring more people into the sport. We are excited that some of our students will get a chance to take part in this. Students not interested in making some tele turns can join Matthew on a trip to the Pump House Indoor Waterpark at Jay Peak. For the uninitiated, this is one of the largest indoor (it has a retractable roof for summer use) waterparks on the east coast and it is awesome (I’m pretty sure that Matthew would run a trip there every weekend if we’d let him). Also on Sunday, students can join Gabe and Robby for an afternoon of ice climbing in the beautiful White Mountain National Forest. This trip, open to all abilities, is a great way to get outside and learn some new skills in a really cool (pun sort of intended) sport. Back on campus, we are reviving our Light Blue/Dark Blue snow sculpture contest. After a very warm Winter Festival weekend last year, we are excited to bring this back with actual snow! Though temps are predicted to rise this weekend, we are hopeful that we’ll get some great snow creations out on the hill.
Recently, one of our students started a WMS version of the “Sketchbook Project”, based on the national initiative of the same name. A group of students, faculty and even some faculty children have all been given an 80 page sketchbook to fill in 30 days. On Sunday afternoon, some of the participants will be gathering to do some sketches together in the dining hall. Thus far, the people participating feel like this is a very cool creative way for them to express themselves in a variety of media. We are all looking forward to the displays of their work when the project wraps up.
Looking ahead, our first semester will wrap up next Friday. Grades for the semester will be available on the school portal the following Tuesday. Typically at this time of year we have also sent home Advisor Letters as well. This year, we will again provide an Advisor Letter, though it will be available through the school portal rather than printed and mailed home. We are currently in the process of examining how, how much and when we have teachers communicate to parents and are considering some modifications for next year. If you are interested in being involved in this discussion or providing feedback on this, please let me know and we’d be happy to include you.
The following weekend, January 26-27, is the WMS Alumnae/i Ski Race. Parents, students, faculty and friends of the school are also invited to join our alumnae/i for this great event. All experience levels are welcome for this fun and informal ‘race’ (did I mention fun?). Parents can be involved as participants, volunteers or even just spectators. Information and a registration form are available on our website. You can also contact Julie Yates for more information as well.
In the coming weeks, we’ll share more information about how we celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day here at WMS, our upcoming Field Courses, February Break, International Night and much, much more. As always, please don’t hesitate to contact us should you have any questions about anything that is going on.
Have a wonderful weekend!
Download our weekend schedule here.