@Assembly and Around Campus

Kara Hooper
A weekly digest of assembly and campus happenings.
@Assembly, 5/23/11:

For his final TOAD talk, Mr. Mazzola spoke about the attachment to homeland.

Joe Bell ‘12 announced that the game of MERGE would start today.

Mr. Mulligan thanked Mr. Pidduck, all faculty and trip captains for the completion of Extra Day Trips.  He also thanked Mr. Maxwell and the Bon Appetit staff for organizing the food for the trips.

Mr. Snyder presented the first ever Meyer Cup, which celebrates “Excellence in Sophomore Pursuits.”  Throughout the year, Los Padres held dorm events (Thacher trivia, arm wrestling and even the shoe kick).  The winning members of the team, led by Will Callan ’11, accepted the trophy.  They were Jarrett Kong, Paul Cresanta, Alex Duncan, Carson Leydecker, Daniel Kruth, Grady Jacobsen and T.J. Kim.

Will Rutter ‘11 announced that there would be a Thacher Gun Club meeting to choose the officers for the 2011-2012 school year.

Avery Hellman ‘11 asked people to sign up from the Blood Drive on Friday.

Mr. Okin asked for volunteers to help him move boulders in the creek bed on the Phelps trail.  

Chase Smith asked for volunteers to help do trail work on Saturday on the Huntington Trail in conjunction with the Ojai Valley Land Conservancy, which care for the Illvento Preserve located there.

Ms. Perry congratulated San Antonio School math team coaches Walker Conyngham ’12 and Mac Combs ’12 for leading their team to a victory.

Ms. Mahoney announced that Hailey Everett ’12 will serve as captain for the Thacher Equestrian Team for the 2011-2012 school year.

Mr. Mazzola gave the wrap up for the varsity baseball team.  Most Improved was Cody Renfrew ’13; team co-MVP’s were Kyle Griffith ’11 and Joe Bell ’12; and Joe Bell ’12 and Timothy Kent ’12 will serve as co-captains next year.

Ms. Grant gave the season wrap up for girls varsity lacrosse.  Ellie Hancock ’13 earned Most Improved honors while Mackenzie Boss ’11 was the MVP.  Captains for next year are Lauren Butler ’12 and Emma Patterson ’12.

@Assembly, 5/30/11:

Mr. Mulligan thanked the directors of the Spring Sing, Tender Love and Corruption, Maggie Miller ’11, Tawni Stoop ’11 and Trevor Mulchay ’11, for two exciting performances over the weekend.  Trevor commented that the success came from the hard work of the cast.

Mr. Mulligan also welcomed back Zoey Poll from School Year Abroad in Rennes, France.

Mr. Haggard suggested that everyone take a peak at the performing arts blog to see updated footage of student performances.

Jina Yun ’11 and Andrew Kim ’11 thanked Ms. Vickery for her work with the Math Club this year.  Heads for next year will be Bridget Park ’12 and Lucy Han ’12.

Mr. Spaulding offered the end-of-season wrap up for boys varsity lacrosse.  The team won the Division II trophy at the Carmel tournament and finished with a strong showing in the playoffs.  Most Improved honors went to Jake Gannon ’11 and Kyrien Edwards ’13; Most inspirational Players were the team’s co-captains, Will Callan ’11 and Graham Abbey ’11; and Most Valuable was Garen Fabian ’12.  Captains for 2012 will be Ian Bearden ’12, Marshall Gifford ’12 and Garen Fabian ’12.  He went on to thank Mr. Shi for running the clock, Mr. Doyle for coaching and Mr. Jacobsen for driving and doing the book.  Finally, he gave a special thanks to Mr. Elmore for seven years of coaching together.

@Assembly, 5/9/11:
 
Mr. Omansiek began the week with a TOAD talk chronicling the history of Thacher’s gymkhana competitions.  Most intriguing was the “telegraph” competition held with Fountain Valley and Orme School in the early part of the 20th century.  At that time, schools would run events simultaneously and telegraph the results immediately to one another to determine a winner.
 
Mr. Mulligan thanked everyone for a “great safe Big Gymkhana weekend.”  He went on to say that he “can’t enumerate the individuals because everyone was involved in the success of the weekend.”
 
Mr. Duykaerts invited anyone interested to come see a screening of the documentary film The Gathering, which chronicles California Vacquero culture.  Though it took Ms. Mazzola to reveal this, Mr. Duykaerts himself is in the film.
 
UCT members Ana Urgiles ’13 and Nu Xiong ’13 explained the significance of the Cinco de Mayo holiday.
 
Mr. Spaulding explained that the boys lacrosse team would play for a spot in the Southern Section Division II finals on Tuesday night in Thousand Oaks against Loyola High School of Los Angeles.
 
Mr. Hooper, Ms. Witmer and Ms. Morales-Kent collaborated to announce this year’s UnProm Theme: Under the Sea.
 
Mr. Okin congratulated the Silver Dollar Club winners: Jamie Rush ’14, Grant Ellman ’14, Reed Gulick-Stutz ’14, Harry Hayman ’14, Miles Fossett ’12 and Trevor Mulchay ’11—who picked it up on his last try on the last day of his final year at Thacher.
 
Environmental Action Committee co-president Joe Bell announced that the School will next year use paper that is 30% recycled material.  This will save 18 trees annually.
 
Outdoor Program Director Brian Pidduck congratulated Giovanna Grigsby-Rocca ’12 on earning her B camper rating and Raquel Reisinger ’11 for earning her A Backpacker rating, garnering, too, “the respect accorded to a faculty member who camps.”
 
Ms. Garcia-Kasimirowski congratulated Shane Griffee ’12 who finished 19th of 32 swimmers in the CIF Southern Section for breaststroke.
 
PTS president Chris Colson ’11 announced that Daniel Kruth ’13 and Geneva Miller ’12 are both now members of PTS.
 
Mr. Haggard announced that auditions for the 2010-2011 Chamber Singers would take place Wednesday night in the choral room.
 
Mr. Perry announced the reinstatement of the Pie/Pi Race.  This race, which is 3.14 miles long, was started by Kurt Meyer (on sabbatical this year) and former faculty member Geoff Bird.  If you complete the race in a certain time, then you win the pie of your choice.
 
Mr. Mulligan began Friday’s Assembly by talking about Extra Day Trips during which “we get to take a break from our routine and enjoy the backcountry.” He stressed the importance of doing this safely, particularly around water.  Mr. Huyler followed this up by quoting former Horse Program Director Jesse Kahle who said, “You don’t have to go looking for adventure; it’ll find you.”
 
Senior Kyle Griffith asked for the community to come support the baseball team in its final game of the season versus Cate.  The team’s freshmen got everyone into the mood by leading the community in a rendition of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame.”
 
Will Rutter announced that Sunday would be the final day of shooting at the Trap Range for anyone interested.
 
Mr. Mulligan thanked Jamie Moore for seven years of service in the Development Office.  Jamie is leaving Thacher to become the Assistant to the President at Bank of America in Calabasas.
 
Around Campus:
With a holiday called on Wednesday, students enjoyed a dance in the Commons in the evening, as well as town runs into Ojai in the morning.  In the afternoon, they headed to Ventura to enjoy the downtown and the beach (within walking distance of Main Street) and hit Cheap Sports and other stores in preparation for Extra Day Trips.
 
The Hill held its Open House on Friday night. Students grilled out on the patio; watched some Bonaroo 2002 in the Common Room; and got henna tattoos.
 
@Assembly, 5/2/11:
 
Mr. Mulligan complimented all students who performed in the weekend’s Battle of the Bands, saying, “What fun to have so many ways to celebrate the power of music!”
 
Mr. Fagan lauded the sophomores for the hard work they put in over the Ojai Valley Tennis Tournament weekend.  Many of them put in 10-11 hour days, and all received compliments from the USC and Stanford coaches as well as several umpires on hand.  He noted in particular the work of Maddie McMorrow ’13 and Elena McGahey ’13 who served as Ballbirl captains for the whole grade.
 
In the absence of present School Chairt Avery Hellman, Dean of Students Sabina McMahon announced the School Chair for the 2011-2012 school year: Joseph Mac Weld Bell.  As Joe ran his first assembly, he began by thanking Avery for her devotion and hard work in the position.
 
In light of the recent death of Osama Bin Laden, Mr. Shagam recommended tuning in to the BBC World News and Al-Jazeera for reliable reporting.
 
Mr. Okin invited those interested to begin practicing for the Silver Dollar Pick Club.  To be a member, one must pick up a Silver Dollar at a full gallop.  Faculty Emeritus Jack Huyler founded the club over fifty years ago.  Students can qualify to try and pick up the silver dollar by first picking up a tennis ball.
 
Ms. Mahoney congratulated the Thacher Equestrian team for its showing at IEA Nationals.  Avery Hellman ’11 earned an 8th place finish; Dallas Thayer ’11 finished 3rd; and Raquel Reisinger finished 8th in her class.
 
One of Thacher’s guitar instructors, Austin Solis, asked for a student to help him with the vocals for an arrangement of the song “Change is a Comin’.”
 
Mr. Haggard congratulated the Chamber Singers for their work at the Disneyland Music Workshop on Sunday.
 
Mr. Mulligan announced a new way to determine the winner(s) of The Monroe-Palmer Prize for Debate and Public Speaking: an adjudicated competition to be held during the penultimate week of the school year. Any students interested should let him know; the competition will be held in the Outdoor Chapel after camping.
 
Members of the Environmental Action Committee announced a battery collection to recycle batteries correctly.
 
Over the weekend, Marshall Gifford ’12, Anouk Ackerman ’12, Joe Bell ’12 and Lucas Currie ’12 competed in a triathlon.  Anouk finished 3rd in her age group.
 
Mr. Mulligan congratulated the following juniors for earning National Merit Commended Scholar status: Andrew Atwong, Lauren Butler, Walker Conyngham, Sarah Cresto, Liza DiNizio, Christina Eilar, Marshall Gifford, Giovanna Grigsby-Rocca, Lucy Han, Margot Hughan, Kalieb Kelbisow, Will Kirkland, Katherine Krey, Geneva Miller, Michael Xu and Katie Yu.  These students will all move on to the National Merit Semi-Final round, which will be announced in September.
 
Chamber Singers members Tawni Stoop, Will Rutter, and Dallas Thayer announced that at the Southern California Vocal Association competition in Ojai, the ensemble had earned a Superior Rating from the judges. Mr. Mulligan accepted the plaque that put it in writing.
 
Mr. Mulligan also congratulated the Environmental Action Committee for its commitment to recycling programs on campus; its work earned it a special award from the California legislature.
 
Mr. Mazzola announced this year’s honorees at the Ventura County Hall of Fame Dinner: Will Callan ’11 and Mackenzie Boss ’11.
 
Mr. Schryver announced the freshmen top ten riders going into Big Gymkhana Weekend: Lachlan Nutting, Anand Shah, Nick Barrak, Sage Whipple, Jamie Rush, Alex Zaldestani, Alex Morris, Grant Ellman and Reed Gulick-Stutz.  The top ten overall were: Geneva Miller ’12, Marco Hernandez ’11, Olivia Stonehouse ’11, Grant Ellman ’14, Will Rutter ’11, Amy Feldman ’13, Reed Gulick-Stutz ’14, Shravan Rajasekaran ’13, Miles Fossett ’12 and Chris Colson ’11 in the number one slot.  Blue Team held the lead with 6231 points, while Orange Team nabbed second and Green Team held third.
 
@Assembly, 4/25/11:
 
Mr. Mieszczanski gave a TOAD talk on “Cultural Literacy” and the importance of pushing ourselves outside of our comfort zones to better understand the world around us.
 
Mr. Fagan announced that the Ojai Valley Tennis Tournament would kick off on Thursday.  He reminded us that the tournament, now 111 years strong, started at Thacher.  The School maintains a long history of volunteer participation at the tournament, and this year is no different; Mr. Fagan asked the sophomore class to look ahead to the end of the week and plan accordingly, as the entire group would work a variety of jobs throughout the Ojai Valley from Thursday through Sunday.
 
Mr. Mulligan congratulated the Senior Class on its collective success with Senior Exhibitions.  He went on to thank the seniors, the faculty advisors, the junior helpers, the tech staff, and program head Jeff Hooper for the work that went into the weekend.
 
He also wished Ms. Mahoney and the Thacher Equestrian Team well at Nationals in Maryland.  The team departed on Monday and competed throughout the week.
 
Thacher girls varsity lacrosse co-captains Mackenzie Boss ’11 and Hannah Norman ’11 asked for support from the community in their final Cate game on Tuesday, at home.
 
Ms. Hooper announced that Battle of the Bands would be occurring on Saturday night; students planning on performing need to send their acts to her.
 
Casa challenged The Hill to a game of Dodgeball after check in.
 
Melanie Reimer ’14 gave a brief speech about childhood poverty in the United States as requirement of her class in public speaking.
 
Mr. Coleman asked that any students interested in completing a trans-Sierra in the fall for their EDT come and see him after Assembly.
 
Mr. Schryver announced the top ten freshman riders (10th place to 1st): Nick Barrack, Annie Beckham, Lachlan Nutting, Alex Zaldastani, Jamie Rush, Sage Whipple, Alex Morris, Grant Ellman, and Reed Gulick-Stutz.
 
The top ten riders overall are (10th place to 1st) Marco Hernandez ’11, Geneva Miller ’12, Grant Ellman ’14, Reed Gulick Stutz ’14, Olivia Stonehouse ’11, Amy Feldman ’13, Shravan Rajasekaran ’13, Miles Fossett ’12, Chris Colson ’11 and Will Rutter ’11.
 
In the overall standings, Green Team is in 3rd place while Blue Team stood in 1st over Orange Team.
 
 Around Campus:
 
On Monday night, the school enjoyed a barbecue on the Pergola and the music of indie musician Gregory Alan Isakov.
 
In the Performing Arts Center on Tuesday night, the Thacher Dance Ensemble performed after formal dinner as a prelude to the Gymkhana Performing Arts Sampler.
 
Visiting Anacapa Artist Mary Louise Porter, a studio artist from Nacogdoches, Texas, arrived on campus and immediately commenced with painting classes, open to the community, on Wednesday evenings.  Mary Louise, who was an Anacapa Artist two years ago, will be here throughout the month.
 
The first round of the School Chair Election occurred on Wednesday with four candidates in the ballot: Fidel Lopez ’12, Joe Bell ’12, Marshall Gifford ’12 and Cassie Disner ‘12.  On Friday, Joe and Cassie, the two finalists, gave their speeches and answered questions from the community; voting took place after Assembly in the Commons.
 
Students headed to Middle School on Friday for the dorm’s Open House.  With food, a smoothie truck and a dance going full steam, everyone enjoyed the evening.
 
The 6th annual Battle of the Bands took place on Saturday night in the Milligan Performing Arts Center.  Six schools in the Condor League gathered together to enjoy the evening and perform: Cate, Thacher, Besant Hill School, Oak Grove School, Ojai Valley School and Dunn School.  Twenty-five acts performed, and a student panel, with a representative from each school, judged the acts. Ojai Valley School took 3rd; an act from Besant Hill School tied for 2nd with Thacher’s own Grant Ellman ‘14, Reed Gulick-Stutz ’14 and Alex Morris, who performed “Cliffs of Dover;” and there was a three way tie for first: Oak Grove’s stellar performance of “Butch” earned perfect marks, as did Nan Macmillan ’13, Brisha Howe ’13, Christina Eilar ’12, Melanie Shahin ’14 and Irene Limb ’13, who performed an original song written by Nan.  In the grand finale of the night, another Thacher group, Scott and the Sensitivity (Scott Lee ’11, Reed Gulick-Stutz ’14, Grant Ellman ’14, Jackson Dolphin ’14, and Jackson Howard ’12) performed “Turn out the Lights” and brought down the house, bringing home a score of a perfect 60.  Thacher had 13 acts, a record, and took first place for the first time ever.
 
@Assembly, 4/11/11:
 
Mr. Klausler announced that the final issue of The Thacher Notes was out.  He also thanked Ben Eastburn ’11, who has been instrumental in the creation (and the creative end) of the paper for the last four years, as well as Sara Brody ’11, Richy Yun ’11 and Bryanna Lloyd ‘11, who also served as editors.
 
Equestrian Coach Ms. Mahoney announced that the Thacher Equestrian Team won the IEA Zone Finals horse show and would be heading to Nationals in Maryland.
 
School Chair Avery Hellman ’11 announced the Soles4Souls drive, to collect shoes for earthquake victims in Japan.  The box for dropping off shoes is available on the Pergola through Friday, April 21.
 
Environmental Action Committee members Joe Bell ’12, Lili Pike ’11 and Marshall Gifford ’12 made a public service announcement regarding recycling.  They asked everyone to play a “recycling game,” guessing which items were recycling and which were trash.
 
Spectrum Co-Heads David Andrade ’11, Noelani Nasser ’11 and Grace Lowe ’11 asked for anyone interested to participate in the National Day of Silence to refrain from speaking on Monday during non-academic time during the class day--"to bring attention to anti-LGBT name-calling, bullying and harassment prevalent in many high schools."
 
Ms. Schryver and Mr. Okin announced the freshman Top Ten going into Gymkhana, #10 up through #1: Shelley Vohr, Momo Lewis, Anand Shah, Minah Choi, Lachlan Nutting, Grant Ellman, Sage Whipple, Reed Gulick-Stutz and Alex Morris nabbed the number 1 slot.
 
The overall Top Ten for the week included (bottom to top) Marco Hernandez ’11, Alex Morris ’14, Olivia Stonehouse ’11, Geneva Miller ’12, Shravan Rajasekaran ’13, Miles Fossett ’12, Amy Feldman ’13, Chris Colson ’11 and Will Rutter ’11 at number one.
 
Before that gymkhana, Blue Team held the lead with 1040 points.
 
Grace Lowe ’11 and Mr. Haggard performed Joni Mitchell’s “Both Sides Now” in anticipation of Saturday night’s coffeehouse.  Nan Macmillan ’13 added to the music with her own piece, just before heading to Austin, Texas, where she competed in a folk festival.
 
Mr. Haggard announced that the Chamber Singers would perform at the Ojai YouthFest in town on Sunday.
 
Chasen Smith ’12 announced that his “Fruits of Winter” Independent Presentation was now up in the Thacher Commons for anyone interested in viewing his work.  Chasen took photographs of the natural world and focused on the Thacher trail system.
 
Mr. Omansiek asked that anyone interested in joining him on a hike to Matilija Falls over the weekend should see him after Assembly.
 
Jake Gannon ’11, gave an announcement on the current political unrest in Ivory Coast.  After five months of violence following a democratic election, and 4 million people internally displaced, there is hope that the democratically elected president will soon take office.
 
Tabitha Sullivan-Wallace ’12 invited anyone interested to come and see her perform the pieces she choreographed as a part of her lyrical dance Afternoon Independent Project.
 
Mr. Mulligan thanked all of the students who came to discuss issues of diversity on Thursday evening in the Thacher room.
 
Around Campus:
 
On Friday night, students and faculty gathered in the Performing Arts Center for a screening of The Greatest game Ever Played, which was directed by Thacher parent Bill Paxton.  He stayed after the film for a question and answer session.
 
Saturday brought the final Coffeehouse of the year.  Performances ranged from acoustic numbers, piano pieces, and even songs written here on campus, as faculty member Aaron Snyder performed his own piece.
 
On Sunday, the Chamber Singers traveled to town and performed in the Ojai YouthFest for about forty-five minutes.  Meanwhile, several others volunteered at the day-long Read-Me-a-Story and face-painting booths.
 
Also on Sunday, Avery Hellman and six other interested students headed farther across town to Oak Grove School for a planning meeting for an upcoming march protesting environmental degradation. 
 
@Assembly, 4/4/11:
 
Mr. Hooper launched his week of TOADship with a talk about delusions and their importance in our lives.
 
School Chair Avery Hellman announced that there would be an open Community Council Meeting after dinner on Monday night.
 
Mr. Mulligan announced that Alex Yeagle ’14 and Alex Zaldastani ’14 would be the boys freshman lacrosse captains for this season.
 
Mr. Pidduck announced an interesting Extra Day Trip option for the spring that involves camping with CdeP graduate Eric Anderson ‘88, who will take a group out to student steelhead trout.  The trip will combine field biology and ecology.
 
Ms. McCarthy announced that Dr. Victoria Bentley would speak after dinner on Monday night about atrocities to women in Congo and what we can do about it.
 
Mr. Schryver announced the top ten freshmen riders for the week: Momo Lewis, Minah Choi, Alex Purcell, Annie Beckham, Ciara Byrne, Reed Gulick-Stutz, Teo Davis, Alex Mo…. and number one rider Sage Whipple.
 
The top ten overall riders are Miles Fossett ’12, Shravan Rajasekaran ’13, Sage Whipple ’14, Lilly Haggard ’12, Chris Colson ’11, Olivia Stonehouse ’11, Marco Hernandez ’11, Amy Feldman ’12, Geneva Miller ’12 and number one rider Will Rutter ’11.
 
Mr. Mulligan welcomed back to campus Lauren Zakarian-Cogswell CdeP 2010, who took a gap year and just returned from several months in Russia, where she lived outside of Moscow.
 
Stephen Huyler CdeP 1966 told the story of discovering the campus gold mine.  He learned about its existence from Anson Thacher, the second headmaster of the school and son of Sherman Day Thacher.  Mr. Huyler offered to take anyone interested to the gold mine at 1 PM.  Indeed, a large group turned out for the hike and enjoyed the rediscovery of this small mine, located beyond the hay barn.
 
Mr. Miesczcanski reminded the community that second visitors would be joining us on Thursday.
 
Mr. Perry thanked everyone for helping at the track meet on Wednesday and announced this year’s captains” Anouk Ackerman ’12 and Jesse Gonzalez ’11.
 
Ms. Mazzola reminded everyone that Perla Batalla would be performing in the PAC on Friday night.
 
School Chair Avery Hellman announced that progress has been made on the issue of the internet.  Access will now be available in dorm common rooms for seniors  for emergency use only after the campus-wide system has been turned off.  She also said that everyone will soon receive information on completing an advisor survey.
 
Ms. Hooper reminded the community that the Coffeehouse is coming up in ten days, with Battle of the Bands to follow on April 29.
 
Amnesty International member Emma Patterson ’12 asked that students and faculty join in to sign a petition regarding unsolved cases of rape and disappearances in Guatemala.  The petition is meant to bring pressure to the Guatemalan government to try and resolve these cases.
 
Dr. Vyhnal announced that just before vacation, several students sat for the Chemistry Olympiad.  In our region, eleven schools competed with 150 students.  Thacher had seven of the top ten scorers.  From these results, two in the whole section scored high enough to move on to the national round.  These students are Will Rutter ’11 and Geneva Miller ’12, who will now sit for a five hour national exam as a part of the top 900 students nationwide who remain.
 
Jackson Howard ’12 invited everyone in the community to come and enjoy the Jazz Band’s performance on the Pergola on Wednesday evening during dinner.
 
Ms. Kent and Ms. Hooper congratulated the seniors and thanked the Senior Profile writers for all of their work on the seniors’ behalf.  They then did a “Happy Dance” to celebrate that everyone had a home for next year.
 
Mr. Mulligan announced that author Chris McDougall, author of Born To Run, would be speaking on Monday night in the PAC.
 
Boys lacrosse captains Graham Abbey ’11 and Will Callan ’11 asked for fan support at the seniors’ final home game against Cate on Saturday.
 
United Cultures of Thacher member Ana Urgiles ’13 and Nu Xiong ’13 announced a screening of The Motorcycle Diaries on Friday night in Room 14 for anyone interested.
 
Chess Club co-heads Josh Cho ’13 and Daniel Kruth ’13 announced a screening if Searching for Bobby Fisher on Saturday night for anyone interested.
 
Dr. Vyhnal congratulated Michael Cho ’13 and Bridget Park ’12 for their 3rd place finish in the Microbiology category at the Ventura County Science fair.
 
Cynthia Santos ’11 and Avery Hellman ’11 asked that anyone interested in organizing a march to highlight environmental degradation should meet at Ojai Pizza on Sunday at 2 PM.
 
Mr. Mazzola announced that Thacher is this year’s winner for the Condor League’s Tony Dunn Shake for Sportsmanship Award.
 
Ms. Perry asked that anyone interested in volunteering at the Special Olympics on Saturday should contact her.
 
Emma Patterson ’12 shed light on the current issues surrounding the national budget crisis.
 
Avery Hellman ’11 encouraged everyone to come out and watch the IEA Zone 10 Finals at Thacher on Saturday to support the Equestrian Team.  PTS hosted a barbecue at the event to support the team.
 
Leo Turpan ’13 asked to see anyone interested in surfing over the weekend after assembly.
 
Around Campus:
 
The Milligan Performing Arts Center was packed on Friday night for the Perla Batalla. Not only did Perla wow the crowd with her own music’ she also performed a song with Thacher’s own Chamber Singers.
 
On Saturday, Thacher’s Equestrian Team finished first in the IEA Zone 10 finals, which they hosted.  The team will now move on to the National finals in Maryland.
 
About sixty Thacher students headed to Cate on Saturday night for a Cate-Thacher dance.
 
On Sunday morning, Chris Colson ’11, Joe Bell ’12, Will Kirkland ’12, Marshall Gifford ’12, Amy Kim ’13 and Madeline Taylor ’14 worked for about three hours on the Twin Peaks trail, continuing the semester long project to clear it.

@Assembly, 3/21/11:
 
Ms. Carney gave a TOAD talk about what is like growing up in a fishbowl—a  boarding school campus—as a faculty child.
 
Mr. Schryver announced the schedule for the week and asked that on Monday afternoon, all riders should join him in Carpenter’s Orchard to pull out a couple of especially invasive weed species.
 
Mr. Haggard reminded everyone that music lessons would start this week.
 
Mr. Fagan cordially invited the sophomores to an informational meeting after Formal Dinner regarding their work in the Ojai Valley Tennis Tournament this spring.
 
Mr. Miesczcanski congratulated the makers of the three winning Why Thacher? videos for their success—Ana Urgiles ’13, Elle Gannon ’14, and Auden Ehringer ‘14; as of Monday, they had over 600 views combined.  He also reminded everyone that Sunday night would be the first night of Second Visits and asked that all freshmen attend a meeting after Formal Dinner to learn more details about their role in the event as hosts of overnight guests.
 
Mr. Schryver introduced a riding master of the Spanish Riding School visiting the Ojai Valley.
 
School Chair Avery Hellman ’11 spoke briefly about the topic of the Community Council meeting held on Monday, which was the advising system.  Notes are posted in the electronic Kiosk.  The topic for the next meeting will be an open discussion on any school issues people want to present.
 
PTS President Chris Colson ’11 announced that there would be a PTS meeting on Sunday to learn more about how to complete trail work.
 
Ms. McMahon and Mr. Maxwell spoke about the results of the school survey regarding the dining hall.  Mr. Maxwell talked about how much the Bon Appetit staff want to meet the preferences of the students, and Ms. McMahon asked that people really take the time to complete the additional survey that would be sent out via email.
 
Lili Pike ’11, Sienna Courter ’11 and Mackenzie Boss ’11 announced that there would be a bake sale after Assembly on Friday.
 
Maddie McMorrow ’13, Gracie Farese ’13, Amy Feldman ’13, Sarah Ratsimbazafy ’13 and Jasmynn Roman ’13 all sang happy birthday to their prefect, Tawni Stoop ’11.
 
Mr. Jacobsen said that he still has several spots available on his summer trip to Kenya.  Anyone interested should contact him.
 
Ms. Vickery announced that her daughter Melissa CdeP 2003 is currently on her way to New Zealand to do forensic architectural engineering research on the earthquake that occurred there.  She is blogging about it if anyone wants to follow what she unearths.
 
Ms. Vickery went on to announce the school winners of the AMC Test.  Josh Cho ’13 won for 10th graders while Bridget Park ’11 won for the 12th grade testers (despite being a junior!).
 
Avery Hellman ’11 asked that any students interested in being part of the student march on Mothers’ Day or any other local events that will highlight environmental degradation should come to a meeting at 4 PM on Friday afternoon.
 
Mr. Mulligan announced that the whole school community was cordially invited to attend the A.L.I.C.E. training, to be held on Friday April 1.  This training will help us understand what to do if an intruder were to come on to campus.
 
Will Rutter ’11 announced that there would be a Sword Club meeting and master class offered on Sunday in the gym.
 
Around Campus:
 
On Monday evening following Formal Dinner, people from Ojai and Thacher gathered in the Brody Art Gallery to see the work of local artist Dennis Shives.  Dennis regularly walks the Thacher trails barefoot, carrying a large staff.  He also has a shock of white hair and a thick beard, prompting the nickname “Barefoot Moses.”  Dennis’s love of the outdoors is reflected in his art, whether it is on canvas, in metal or wood, or even in the sand.
 
On Friday night, students enjoyed an evening of March Madness in the Commons.  With NCAA tournament games available on two screens, and a nacho bar, popcorn, soda and milkshakes, everyone made the most of VCU’s upset, while Richmond’s Cinderella run came to an end.  From there, students spread out throughout campus to watch a variety of movies, including The Fighter, The Jungle Book and Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure.
 
The Thacher Pack and Spur Club (known as PTS) sponsored a Hoedown on Saturday night. The event featured a barbecue, dance and mechanical bull. 
 
Elena McGahey ’13, Joe Bell ’12, Will Kirkland, Ms. Hooper and Mr. Schryver worked on the trails with the leader of the CREW, a local group that performs trail work on National Forest Trails.  They learned how to use a variety of tools, from the Pulaski to the Macleod, as well as how to complete “treadwork,” which is essentially repairing water damage, leveling the trails, building waterbars and creating “chip steps” to make the trails safer for hikers and horses.
 
Sunday evening saw a flurry of activity, as seniors scurried to put the final touches on their Senior Exhibition annotated bibliographies, which were due at 9:30 PM.
@Assembly, Week of 2/28/11:
 
Dr. Vyhnal gave a TOAD talk that focused on the history of Thacher’s involvement with the Summer Science Program, which was founded at Thacher in 1959 with CalTech and MIT.  The program now continues at two campuses in the summer: Westmont College and New Mexico Tech.
 
Dr. Finch introduced a faculty member from Ojai Valley School who invited anyone from the Thacher community to come and listen to a visiting lecturer who specializes in the Spanish Riding School.
 
Mr. Mulligan gave high praise to the cast of RENT and even convinced them to do an impromptu final encore for the school.  He asked the directors what they found challenging about the play.  Mr. Jensen noted the difficulty in the vocal range of the music, and Mr. Haggard agreed, adding, “Every rehearsal was a joyful experience.”  Ms. Vickery commented that she liked how “it was a show about how friendship and love help you through your life.”
 
Mr. Schryver reminded the freshman and winter riders to come to the barns for saddle clean up after school.
 
School Chair Avery Hellman briefly reported on the Community Council meeting that occurred on Monday night.  Topics covered included the roles of leaders on campus and issues related to clubs.
 
Mr. Spaulding asked that any students interested in working at Golden Trout Camp in the High Sierra this summer meet him in the Thacher Room after formal dinner.
 
Mr. Coleman gave the season wrap-up for boys varsity soccer.  While some thought this would be a building year for the team, that was not so; with an energetic young core group of players, the team finished 14-3 and 2nd in the Condor League.  Jesse Gonzalez ’11 and Conrad Troast ’13 shared Most Improved honors; senior captain Will Callan earned Most Inspirational and Most Valuable Player.  The captains for next season will be Patrick Coughran ’12 and Fidel Lopez ’12.
 
Mr. Perry gave the end of season wrap up for girls varsity basketball.  He began by thanking Mr. McGowan for his help, as well as Athletic Director Rich Mazzola and the kitchen staff.  Ciara Byrne earned Most Improved honors while Noelani Nasser ’11 was Most Inspirational.  Mackenzie Boss ’11 and Hutton Becker ’13 shared Most Valuable Player honors.
 
Ms. Grant gave the end-of-season report for girls jv soccer.  Katie Taylor ’11 and Cassie Disner ’12 were Most Inspirational Players while Katie Taylor shared Most Improved honors with Leigh Thomas ’13.  Alice Hyde ’12 was the Most Valuable Player.  Ms. Grant finished by thanking her able assistants Ms. Witmer and Ms. Elliott, as well as the seniors on the team.
Mr. Harris followed with his wrap-up for boys jv soccer.  The team finished the season 9-2 after “steamrollering opponents.”  Oliver Domergue ’13 nabbed Most Improved honors, while co-captain Chris Dienst ‘11 was Most Valuable Player.
 
Around Campus:
 
On Saturday night, students enjoyed the Lower School Open House, which featured a dance in the common room, a “street” magician and as many donuts as anyone could want.
@Assembly, 2/21/11:
 
Director of Athletics Mr. Mazzola announced that all students should commit to a spring activity by Friday, as the spring season is commencing.
 
Tawni Stoop ’11 announced that Spring Sing auditions would be held Monday night at 9:30 PM.
 
Mr. Carney offered to take any students interested along for the Heart and Sole Race held in Ojai on Saturday morning.  He went on to give the season summary for boys varsity basketball.  The team lost in the first round to a team from Los Angeles, whose mascot was actually the frog.  This year’s squad finished 2nd in the Condor League.  Kyrien Edwards ’13 earned Most Improved honors, while Lucas Currie ’12 and Dan Hu ’11 shared Most Valuable Player accolades.
 
School Chair Avery Hellman announced that the next Community Council meeting would focus on an evaluation of student government this year.
 
The cast of RENT performed an a capella version of “Seasons of Love” in advance of the show’s opening night on Thursday.
 
PTS President Chris Colson ’11 announced that anyone interested should contact him about doing trail work on the Twin Peaks trail on Sunday.
 
Mr. Mazzola gave the jv girls basketball season wrap up.  Sophomore Kallie O’Connor earned Most Valuable Player honors while classmate Julianna Childs was chosen as the Most Inspirational Player.  Hannah Everett ‘14 earned Most Improved Player. Season highlights included being outside every day for practice and finishing undefeated in the Condor League.  Also, Annie Beckham ’14 scored 20 points in one game against Cate.  Mr. Mazzola also thanked co-captains Christina Eilar ’12 and Bridget Park ’12 for their leadership.
 
Elena McGahey ’13 invited anyone interested to sit at the French Language Table for Formal Dinner on Thursday.
 
Mr. Schryver reminded all riders to vote for Gymkhana Captains after their speeches.
 
Josh Cho ’13 announced that the Chess Club would meet after Formal Dinner.  He also reminded all those left in the Foosball tournament to play their remaining matches.
 
Mr. Spaulding, who directs the School’s summer program at Golden Trout, announced that anyone interested in working their this summer should meet with him.   He also announced that anyone interested in participating in the Muir Wise Leadership Program, a three-week long intensive course focusing on orienteering and wilderness skills, should see him.
 
Mr. Omansiek gave the jv boys basketball season wrap up.  James Paxton ’12 earned Most Inspirational Player, while Justin Myles garnered the Most Improved award.  Jack Weil, who averaged 12 points a game, was the team’s Most Valuable Player.  James Paxton ’12, Jack Weil ’13 and Jackson Howard ’12 served as the team captains.
 
Joe Bell ’12 asked that anyone interested in participating in a composting work day come to the composting area at 2 PM on Sunday.
 
Mr. Mulligan introduced Betsy Burleson CdeP 1992, who spoke briefly about climate change.  Betsy is an Energy Law Specialist who attended the recent energy summits in Copenhagen and Cancun.  Her remarks focused on “thinking outside the box” as we consider about energy and water use in the future.  She went on to talk about the impact that simple solutions—like merry-go-round water pumps and rainwater harvesting—can have in communities around the world, and credited Thacher with having inculcated in her a questioning approach to these sorts of issues.
 
Mr. and Mrs. Elmore invited students to attend a Dinner and Docs event at their home for Tapas and Tiny Desk Concerts.
 
Mr. Elmore followed this by announcing that Thacher finished second in the California in the Green Cup Challenge by reducing its energy consumption by 11% compared to the same time period a year ago.  This is equal to saving 9 tons of CO2 emissions from being released into the atmosphere. Joe Bell ’12 chimed in to say that as a thank you, the EAC would squeeze orange juice for the community at brunch on Saturday with an old-fashioned, non-electric juicer.
 
Mr. McGowan announced that Sunday evening after formal dinner would be the grand opening of the “Mark Twain and his America” museum in Room 1.
 
Around Campus:
 
The whole community enjoyed three rousing performances of the play Rent over the weekend.  With a small cast headed by Will Rutter ’12, Grace Lowe ’12, Brandon Green ’12, Dallas Thayer ’12, Scott Lee ’12 and Trevor Mulchay ’12, the entire production was a rollercoaster of emotion from start to finish.
 
On Sunday, Chris Colson ’11, Joe Bell ’12, Eric Herzig ’14, Harry Hayman ’14 and Ms. Hooper worked on the Twin Peaks trail.  This marked the third community effort since January to clear the trail. 
 
A late winter storm brought rain to Ojai, as well as some brief snow-ish flurries.  This meant a foot of fresh powder in the local backcountry, and so on Sunday, Mr. Pidduck headed to Mt. Pinos for some skiing with Avery Hellman ’11 and Raquel Reisinger ’11.  They left campus at 6:20 AM and returned from a full day of adventure at 7 PM, just in time for study hall.
 
 @Assembly, 2/14/11:
 
Indoor Committee Co-Head Marco Hernandez ’11 announced that Tuesday would be Twin Day for Spirit Week.  Ms. Hooper followed his announcement by deeming the seniors the winners of Monday’s theme, “Dueling Decades,” as they truly embraced the 80s, with side ponytails, legwarmers, and even a spot–on rendering of Slash, from Guns N Roses.
 
Maggie Miller ’11, Tawni Stoop ’11 and Trevor Mulchay ‘11, the Directors of Spring Sing, encouraged anyone interested to come and audition for the student run production.  They finished by saying, “No cuts! And no budget!”
 
Brandon Green ’11 announced that the Music Guild would be focusing on songwriting throughout the week.
 
Marco Hernandez ’11 and Alec Grushkin ’11 announced that Wednesday of Spirit Week would be Pajama Day.
 
Mr. Haggard asked that any students interested in seeing Ojai Valley School’s production of The Wiz to see him after Assembly.
 
School Chair Avery Hellman ’11 announced that for dinner on Wednesday night, students and faculty could choose to have a simple meal of soup and bread.  The savings generated from this choice would go to benefit HELP of Ojai’s food program.
 
Mr. Mulligan congratulated Maggie Miller ’11, Jina Yun ’11 and Bryanna Lloyd ‘11, all of whom were named National Merit Finalists.  He went on to invite students to attend a Fireside Chat about diversity and multiculturalism at Thacher at his home after Spring Break.
 
 Ms. Grant asked that all girls interested playing lacrosse at any level come and see her after Assembly.
 
Mr. Haggard asked that students who want music lessons in the third trimester see him.
 
Mr. Perry thanked the school community “for your vociferous support” at the girls varsity basketball 2nd round playoff game on Saturday night.
 
Mr. McGowan asked that any students interested in the Cuba trip over the summer come to a short meeting after formal dinner.
 
Maggie Miller ’11 and Dan Hu ’11 announced that the end of the Green Cup Challenge would be coming on Friday.
 
Ms. Hooper gave the nod to the seniors for winning Class Color Day, though the freshmen put on a good show with their proud display of yellow.
 
The sophomore boys of Los Padres closed out Friday’s Assembly with a skit riffing on “The Langston Hughes Project” to get people excited for their Open House on Saturday night.
 
Around Campus:
 
The Corbian Dance Troupe, from New Orleans, LA, performed in the PAC on Monday night.  Their performance occurred in the dark, with costumes comprised of glowing neon lights.  The story, which focused on  a dinosaur and its master, separated and trying to find one another again, kept the crowd mesmerized.  Best of all, Michael Quintana, CdeP 2004, was the main character.  The troupe went on to work with the Dance Ensemble after school on Tuesday.  For more information about the Company: http://www.corbianarts.com/
 
On Wednesday, students left the PAC feeling sorrowful, as it seemed that their last opportunity for a holiday had come and gone.  However, upon reaching the Dining Hall, a loud whoop went up, as a student discovered the simple word “HOLIDAY” on the Daily Readers (placed on each table at lunchtime), listing the upcoming schedule That evening, students enjoyed the movie Easy A followed by a dance in the Commons, as well as the chance to relax and go to town on Thursday.
 
Throughout the week at Assembly, Lectures & Concerts Coordinator Chris Mazzola reminded the community of the required speaker for Saturday night: a Thacher grad from the class of ’66 coming to talk about textiles and their effect on our culture.  On Saturday evening, students shuffled reluctantly into the PAC, dutifully checking in with Will Kirkland ’12, who was taking attendance.  Soon the illustrious speaker began his speech: “Wow, I am really feeling the energy tonight from you all.  I usually give this talk at retirement homes and prisons.”  Carson Land ’11 stood up and launched an open protest to the requirement of attending a speech on a Saturday night and suggested an alternative: Jamba Juice for the whole school, followed by a video dance in the gym.  Soon everyone understood it had all been a ruse, planned and carried out by the Indoor Committee, and headed out to enjoy the evening’s festivities.
 
 @Assembly, Week of 2/7/11:
 
Literary Society Co-Head Brandon Green ‘11 announced that the group would hold a meeting after formal dinner in the Thacher Room.
 
In honor of Black History Month, Justin Myles ’13 read a quotation from Harriet Tubman.
 
Mr. Mulligan thanked Brian Pidduck for putting together the student ski trip to Mammoth.  He went on to welcome the CAIS/WASC team, on campus for four days to evaluate the School.  Later on in the week, after the committee departed, Mr. Mulligan thanked Mr. Perry for organizing the presentation, editing the WASC document, and facilitating their visit.
 
Mr. Schryver announced the second opportunity to participate in trail maintenance.  He asked that anyone interested should contact Joe Bell ’12 and Chris Colson ’11. 
 
Ms. Perry reminded students that as they head off campus for Cultural Weekend, they should sign out online and leave a note on their door to let people know they are away.
 
Ms. Halsey invited students to her home on Saturday night for a double feature of French films: The Heartbreaker and Amelie.
 
Ms. Mazzola announced that this year’s Orrick Lecture would feature Stephen Nasser, a Holocaust survivor originally from Hungary.  (Mr. Nasser wrote a diary while he was in Auschwitz at age thirteen, which has been published.) The lecture to the  Thacher community would be his 600th.  At Friday’s Assembly the School celebrated his 80th birthday with him and presented him with a cake that read “Happy Birthday, Pista,” which was his nickname back home.  He spoke briefly to the crowd, describing himself as “Just a piece of the mosaic” of humanity.
 
Indoor Committee heads Marco Hernandez ’11 and Ebony Davis ’11 announced that Lazer Tag would be available on the Upper School Lawn on Saturday night.  Several other Indoor Committee Heads (Joe Bell ’12, Carson Land ’11, Dallas Thayer ’12 and John Cowles ’12) joined them to model different periods of dress from a variety of decades to launch Spirit Week on Monday.  The first day of the week is “Dueling Decades.”  The boys went on to announced Fondue Night in the Commons with a host of “Cheesy” jokes (Question: What was the name of the Meyers’ dog? Answer: Brie).
 
John Cowles ’12 presented a Recycling Award to the maintenance staff, which was earned in part for recycling or reusing 70% of the materials from the old Hill Dormitory as the new one was constructed.  Only 12 of these awards were given in the entire nation.
 
Around Campus:
 
On Friday night, Stephen Nasser addressed a large crown in the Performing Arts Center as a part of this year’s Orrick Lecture.  Dr. Nasser is a Holocaust survivor, who spent a year in Auschwitz at age 13.  He is the only family member of his immediate twenty-one relatives to have survived the Holocaust.  Still, the number he spoke of throughout his lecture was of the 5 million who survived.
 
Saturday morning brought the dawning of Cultural Weekend, as students and faculty spread out throughout Southern California to take in shows, visit the LA Farmers’ Market, listen to music and enjoy good food and good company.  With Molly Perry and Peter Robinson helping to organize the logistics of the weekend, students and faculty alike finished the weekend feeling fully enriched.
 
Students on campus on Saturday evening made valentines at the Mulligans’ Open House and frolicked in the Lazer Tag maze.
 
The Math Club headed to Westmont College on Saturday for the annual Mathematics Competition there.  They brought home the overall #1 prize.
 
 
 
 


 
 
 
 
 
 
@Assembly, Week of 1/30/11:
 
Mr. Mulligan thanked Ms. McMahon for orchestrating the Toad Music Fest, which was a hugely successful event.
 
Ms. Mazzola lauded the work of Dan Hu ’11 for wholly organizing the Vert Freak event, held in the gym on Friday night.  Dan is a member of the Lectures and Concerts committee, which Ms. Mazzola coordinates.
 
Ms. Halsey invited any interested students to join her in hearing former Poet Laureate W.S. Merwin at UC-SB on February 17.
 
Current Events Club member Chris Dienst ’11 gave an update on the civil unrest in Egypt.
 
School Chair Avery Hellman ’11 announced that there would be a Community Council meeting after formal dinner to discuss the School’s internet policy.
 
Ms. McMahon announced that there will now be Sunday town runs from 10-12 every other weekend.
 
Mr. Pidduck asked that any students interested in participating in an EDT entirely aboard a Tall Masted ship should contact him via email.
 
UCT co-heads Noelani Nasser ’12 and Mouna Lawrence ’12 announced that it is Black History Month; Mouna explained how Black History Month began, and Noelani asked that anyone interested in participating in reading at Assembly should come to the group’s meeting after formal dinner.
 
Mr. Okin asked that anyone interested in helping with plantings at the barns meet with him after Assembly.
 
Ms. Sawyer-Mulligan announced that Open House would keep the spirit of “Lights Out Thacher,” with a candlelit house, prebaked cookies, and lots of s’mores available at the blazing fire pit.
 
Ms. Mazzola announced that singer/songwriter Rain Perry would host a songwriting workshop to interested students.
 
EAC member Maggie Miller ’11 announced that the community is down 11% in energy consumption for the week compared to a year ago for the same period.
 
Around Campus:
Mr. Pidduck and Mr. Mulligan took thirty-five students to Mammoth for the weekend to ski.
 
On Friday night, the EAC and the Indoor Committee co-sponsored “Lights Out Thacher.”  The Dining Hall held a barbecue at the gym in an effort to go low-tech (and to allow students to support the basketball team, who faced Besant Hill).  The Mulligans’ Open House was all candlelit, and outside, a grill and the fire pit providing good coals for s’mores.  After Open House, students headed to the Pergola for fire pits, a jam session and…more s’mores.  The event was a part of the Green Cup Challenge, a month-long competition among boarding schools to cut down energy consumption.
 
Over 100 students headed to Santa Barbara on Saturday night to enjoy some shopping, dining, and movie viewing on State Street.
 
@Assembly, Week of 1/24/11:

Ms. McMahon introduced Richard Ryan, who visits Thacher every year and talks with each grade about drug and alcohol issues.

Dr. DelVecchio announced that she would be leading a camping trip to Death Valley, departing on Friday, and any interested students should contact her.

Lili Pike ’11 is revitalizing the Chinese Club.  Anyone interested should come to the group’s next meeting.

Chris Yih ’12 announced that the 7th Man Club would be holding an In-N-Out sale during 9:30-10 on Monday night.

Literary Society Co-Head Trevor Mulchay ’11 announced an Open Mic night in the Thacher Room on Wednesday at 6 PM for anyone interested in sharing his or her work.

Anacapa Scholar Nancy Boutilier shared her poem “Ode to Moped” with the community.  

Mr. Mulligan announced that there would be no formal dinner on Tuesday so that students could listen to the President’s State of the Union Address, which aired in the PAC.

Raul Soto ’14 thanked his classmates Hannah Everett, Elle Gannon, Nayla Kidd, Jackson Dolphin, and Simon Novich for helping him when his horse fell off the trail on Saturday, along with Mr. Swan who “turned into Chuck Norris” to help him get his horse back onto the trail.

Mr. Suarez from the Oxbridge Academic Program introduced himself at Assembly and was available for anyone interested in learning more about the program at lunch after assembly.

Avery Hellman, School Chair, announced that the Honor Code Discussion minutes were available in the Kiosk in the Community Council Folder online.

Sienna Courter ’11 reminded everyone that the Literary Society would be holding an Open Mic night.

Mr. Schryver asked that anyone interested in working on the Twin Peaks trail on Sunday come confirm with him after Assembly.  All participants would enjoy a full day’s work with a barbecue at the Schryvers' Sunday evening.

Dan Hu ’11 announced that six professional slam dunkers would be here on Friday night in the gym to put on a show and play a game.

Mr. Mulligan asked that we all give Margot Hughan ’12 a collective hug as she heads off to Chewonki (formerly Maine Coast Semester) for the Spring semester.

He also said goodbye to Anacapa Scholar Nancy Boutilier, who spent the month of January with us.  She was “on every level at home,” as she made herself comfortable in classrooms, with the Literary Society, on the basketball court, on the trails and in the saddle.  Mr. Mulligan finished by saying, that we have been “uplifted by your presence.”

Chris Colson announced the newest members of PTS: Jack Sligh ’11 and Marco Hernandez ’11.

Mr. Elmore invited anyone interested to come to the house for Premier League and Pancakes.  He also announced that the United Cultures of Thacher would be meeting after formal on Sunday to discuss the group’s mission.

EAC member Maggie Miller ’11 reminded everyone to be mindful of energy consumption during this month, as the School participates in the Green Cup Challenge.

Ms. Grant announced that her trip to the beach for an overnight camping excursion would include some tide pooling exploration.

Mr. Omansiek announced that he still had room for his “Dinner and Docs” screening of the film War Dance at his house on Friday night.

A Debate Society Head announced that the next debate will focus on the WikiLeaks controversy.

 Around Campus:
Ms. Delvecchio left for a camping trip to Death Valley with Shelby Luce ’13, Melanie Reimer ’13, Maeve Briggs ’13, Julianna Childs ‘13.  The group first spent Friday afternoon on the sand dunes.  On Saturday, they visited a volcanic crater and then did an easy hike along Zebresky Point and checked out the salt flats and the lowest point in our hemisphere.  They drove back on Sunday in time for play rehearsal.

Ms. Grant headed out for an overnight to the beach with Chris Yih ’12, Giovanna Grigsby-Rocca ’12, Katie Yu ’12, Lachlan Nutting ’14 and Caleb Couterie ‘14.  They pitched camp by the ocean and spent the afternoon wading in tide pools.  After a pancake breakfast and some sandcastle building on Saturday morning, they returned to campus.

On Friday night, six slam dunkers from the group Vert Freak put on a show for students in the gym and then played a friendly game against all comers for about thirty minutes.  Participants ranged from varsity basketball players to faculty to faculty children.  Afterwards, students headed to Sespe for their “Toga Party,” which featured great music, some dancing, good food and games.

Saturday saw the arrival of the first ever ToadFest, a celebration of Thacher music.  The event began in the late afternoon and continued until 9 PM.  The Amphitheatre was hopping as students and parents participated, as well as Thacher alumni.

On Sunday, about fifteen students and several faculty headed out for a full day of trail maintenance work on the Thacher trail system.  Two groups worked steadily on the Twin Peaks trail, while a third worked on the Wyman Trail, which links the Huntington Trail to the Forest Cook Trail.  Cam Schryver and Kara and Jeff Hooper worked alongside Joe Bell ’12, Chris Colson ’11, Marco Hernandez ’11, Harry Hayman ’14, Wade Warren ’14, Pascal Ceaver-Corey ’14, Aidan Waugh ’14, David Chao ’14, Leo Turpan ’13, Daniel Kruth ’13, Brittany Holden ’13, Hannah Kent ’13, Henry Field ’12, Miles Fossett ’12 and Eric Herzig ’14.

@Assembly, Week of 1/17/11:

In honor of Martin Luther King Day, Ms. Snyder read a poem by Coretta Scott King, and several UCT members spoke.  Noelani Nasser ’11 read an excerpt from “Letter from a Birmingham Jail;” Brandon Green ’11 read a Langston Hughes poem; Ebony Davis ’11 read an excerpt from a W.E.B. DuBois piece; and Mouna Lawrence ’11 read “Notes from A Native Son.”

Mr. Shagam announced the names of the students who made the most money “investing in the stock market” in his two Economics sections.  Fidel Lopez ’12 made $384,000, while Graham Abbey ’11 finished second.
On behalf of the Casa girls, Elle Gannon ’14 accepted the Lower School boys’ dodgeball challenge.

Indoor Co-Head Marco Hernandez ’11 thanked the faculty who hosted Faculty Favorites at their homes.

Mr. Hooper announced that Jake Gannon ’11 and Marco Hernandez ’11 earned All-CIF Honorable Mention honors in football.  Chris Colson ’11 and Kyle Montes ’11 each earned 1st Team honors.

Mr. Duykaerts thanked Miles Fossett ’12, Cayce Cover ’12, Alice Hyde ’12, Lachlan Nutting ’14 and Olivia Stonehouse ’11 for packing in lumber for the Forest Service’s restoration of the Red Reef Trail.

Ms. Perry announced that Cultural Weekend information would be coming out soon.

The School Chair announced that there would be a Community Council meeting after formal dinner to discuss the Honor Code.

Mr. Jacobsen announced that Nicole Haggard CdeP 2000 would be holding a roundtable discussion in the Study Hall after formal dinner to discuss race in American.  She asked that anyone planning on attending first read Langston Hughes’s piece “The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain,” as this would be the jmping off point for the discussion.  Ms. Haggard held the discussion as a follow up to “The Langston Hughes Project,” which the entire school enjoyed on Monday evening.

Mr. Mazzola congratulated the jv girls basketball captains for 2011: Christina Eilar ’12 and Jade Lopes ’12.

Leo Turpan ’13 asked that anyone interested in surfing in the afternoon come and see him after assembly.

Reed Gulick-Stutz ’14, Maggie Miller ’11, Eva Batalla-Mann ’12 and Evan Farese ’13 announced the ToadFest, a celebration of Thacher music, coming up on January 29.

Literary Society Co-Head Trevor Mulchay ’11 announced a meeting in the Thacher Room with Anacapa Scholar Nancy Boutilier on Wednesday night.

Josh Cho ’13 asked that anyone interested in participating in the all-school Foosball Tournament contact him.  He also announced that Dr. Vyhnal and Mr. Omansiek would face off in the finals of the All-School Chess tournament.

Ms. McMahon announced that there would be town runs on Sunday from 10-12 so that students could enjoy the Farmers’ Market and a morning in Ojai.

Indoor Committee Co-Head John Cowles announced that town runs would be extended on Saturday night so that students could eat dinner in town and then head to Villanova to cheer on the girls varsity basketball team.

Steffi Star ’11 announced that Amnesty International would be selling candy at the boys basketball game to raise money.

Dan Hu ’11 announced the beginning of the Green Cup Challenge, a month-long competition among boarding schools in America to reduce energy consumption.  Seventy schools compete in this competition.

Mr. Sawyer asked for interested students to join him in a ride to the Pines to fix the water system there.

Mr. Schryver announced that Cayce Cover ’12 had earned her Horseman’s Ranking.

Indoor Committee Co-Head Marco Hernandez announced that Singled Out would take place in the PAC on Friday night.

@Assembly, Week of 1/3/11 and 1/10/11:


Mr. Mulligan officially welcomed back Walker Coyningham ’12, Mac Combs ’12, Giovanna Grigsby-Rocca ’12, all of whom spent the first trimester at Chewonki (formerly known as Maine Coast Semester), as well as Molly Wyman ’12, who has returned from SYA-Vietnam, also a semester program.

Mr. Jacobsen introduced Anacapa Fellow Nancy Boutilier, a Professor of Creative Writing at Oberlin College, who is visiting Thacher for a month.  Before teaching at Oberlin, Nancy worked at Andover Academy and University High School.  She addressed the crowd, saying, “I’m here not to be a writer, but to write.  I invite you to live with me in action verbs.”  Already in her time here, Nancy has met with several English classes and the Literary Society.

Will Rutter ’11 announced that the Trap Range would be open on Sunday.

Mr. Mieszczanski asked that all members of the United Cultures of Thacher come to the Alumni Council dinner and meeting in the Thacher Room.

On Monday the 10th, Mr. Fagan gave a TOAD talk about integrity and the importance of doing the right thing when no one is looking.

Emma Patterson ’12, a member of the Current Events Club, asked that the community observe the national moment of silence to remember the victims of the shooting in Tucson.

Recent Chewonki participant Giovanna Grigsby-Rocca ’12 offered to talk with anyone interested in learning more about the program.

Mr. Schryver asked that the community welcome Duke Phillips, who spoke in Room 14 after formal dinner about sustainable ranching practices and ecosystem management.

Literary Society Co-Head Trevor Mulchay ’11 announced that Anacapa Fellow Nancy Boutilier would be meeting with the group on Wednesday evening.

Mr. Mulligan welcomed the visiting chair of the WASC committee that would review Thacher, Mike Diacombe, who is also the Head of School at University High School.  He also introduced Vanessa Rhodes the new Controller in the Business Office.  Vanessa was formerly the Controller Harvard-Westlake School.

Mr. Mulligan asked that any students interested in working in Kauai on the ranch of the McClosky family over the summer contact him.

Director of Development Mr. Doyle introduced Mimi Van Son to the community, as she is succeeding Eileen McGuire in the development office.

Current Events club member Jake Gannon ’11 announced the vote for independence in Southern Sudan, stressing the historic moment and the “serious step towards peace in the region” that this vote represents.

Justin Myles ’13 and Giovanna Grigsby-Rocca ’12, co-Heads of the Meditation Club, invited anyone interested to join them in regular meditation on Monday mornings in the Study Hall.

Mack Blakewell, a teacher at the Cate School, came for his annual visit to talk about his summer program, Inside Thailand.

Ms. Mazzola announced that on Monday night the community is cordially invited to see Langston Hughes’s “Ask Your Momma: 12 Moods of Jazz” in the PAC in honor of Martin Luther King Day.

Ms. Hooper announced that faculty Favorites would be taking place on Friday night at various faculty members’ homes.  She also reminded students of the trip to Sky High on Saturday night and the Ventura bus trip on Sunday.

Around campus:

A group of students departed on Friday afternoon with Mr. Pidduck for a weekend of skiing at Mammoth.  Mr. Pidduck reports, "It was a fantastic weekend of skiing.  December brought 209" of snow, so we had excellent conditions.  We skied all over the mountain, and even hiked up a few hills on the boundary of the ski area skied powder in the trees.  (We call this earning your turns!).  Our favorite runs were Dave's Run, Jibs Galore, Scotty's and the Avalanche Gullies.  It was a fantastic group of students.  Couldn't ask for more for the first weekend back from winter break!" Participant included Mary Ellen Funke '11, Chris Dienst '11 and Erich Herzig '14.

On Friday night, the Hoopers hosted students a Dinner and Docs screening of  Murderball, a film about international wheelchair rugby.

Students celebrated their return to school with a dance in the Commons on Friday night.

On Saturday night, students gathered in the Commons for “Treat Yourself Right Night,” which featured masseuses, as well as henna tattoo and hair bling artists.

Our second weekend back saw a bustle of activity.  On Friday evening, 15 faculty members hosted students for a movie of their choice and dessert for the 8th annual “Faculty Favorites Night.”  Over 130 students participated in the evening.  Movie choices ranged from foreign films like Blame it on Fidel (with Nutella and pound cake at the McGowans’) and Amelie (which featured Ms. Kasimirowski’s amazing crepes) to the more recent like  Dinner for Schmucks (with cobbler at Mr. Klausler’s) and Inception (at Mr. Harris’s, with—naturally—tea and biscuits).

On Saturday, a small group of students departed campus at 6:30 AM on horseback to pack lumber into Ladybug camp for the Forest Service's work on restoring the trail and the camping area.  Cayce Cover '12, Olivia Stonehouse '11, Lachlan Nutting '14, Alice Hyde '12 and Miles Fossett '12 all worked together to guide the pack horses and their loads to the drop off area.  The trip featured a beautiful sunny day, snow at the ridge and of course a snowball fight.

Saturday night, sixty-one students headed off campus to jump to their hearts’ content at Sky High Sports in Camarillo.  

On Sunday afternoon—an unseasonably warm day—students headed to Ventura for an off-campus breather of fresh salt air.

Week of 12/13/10:


Sarah Cresto ’12 announced her fall Independent Afternoon Project presentation on the Development of Religion in the Roman Empire after formal dinner.

Ms. Vickery summarized the accomplishments of the fall dancers.  Valorie Denton-Moore ‘11 and Tabitha Sullivan-Wallace ’12 earned Most Inspirational honors, while Leigh Thomas ’13 was the group’s Most Improved New Dancer.  

Mr. Harris announced that Chris Dienst ’11, Carson Land ’11 and Richy Yun ’11 will serve as the captains for boys jv soccer this year.

The School Chair announced that there would be a Community Council meeting about the Honor Code after formal dinner.

Ms. McMahon reminded students to have a buddy for departure on Thursday morning.

Mr. Sawyer announced the results of the Horseball Tournament, with Santa’s Reindeer taking the title.

Week of 12/6/10:


Dr. Delvecchio gave a TOAD talk about the importance of Failure.

Ms. McMahon reminded everyone that the Bi-Annual Student Survey would be administered on Tuesday night.  She explained that this is an intensive but important evaluation of every aspect of school life, the results of which help the administration and faculty create improvements year to year.

Mr. Jacobsen introduced Clark Judge, our visiting Anacapa Fellow.  Mr. Judge is a former member of the White House writer’s group for Presidents Reagan and George HW Bush.

Ana Urgiles ’13 and Kallie O’Connor ’13 announced that there would be a French table at Formal dinner Monday evening at Ms. Halsey’s table.

Chess Club president Josh Cho ’13 encouraged everyone interested to come and play chess after formal dinner every Monday evening.

Mr. Okin and Mr. Duykaerts invited students to join them on a horsepacking trip to the Sespe into “country as beautiful as you’ve ever seen” to help pack in lumber supplies for the Forest Service to restore the Red Reef Trail.

Mr. Schryver congratulated Olivia Stonehouse ’11 on earning the “Horseman” Riding Award.

The School Chair invited the community to a meeting to discuss the pluses and minuses of the Internet Shut off and the role of clubs on campus.

Mr. Sawyer announced that there would be a horseball tournament beginning on Thursday and running through Monday of next week.
 
Mr. Miesczcanski asked for volunteers to help the admission office with a filming project on the question “What makes Thacher great?”

Swim Club co-president Harry Hayman invited anyone interested to participate in a Polar Plunge, followed by hot chocolate, hot tea and cookies.

Julianna Childs ’13 revealed that the Harry Potter Club is back in action.

Molly Perry encouraged the community to help support the members of our Adopt-A-Family with food, a gift, or a monetary contribution.

The Sir Winston Churchill Debate Co-President Chris Dienst ’11 announced that the society would hold a debate on 1st amendment protection on Thursday night after formal dinner.

Amnesty International members Eva Batalla-Mann ’12 and Margot Hughan ’12 announced that the group would hold write-a-thons at lunch throughout the week.

Leeah Stickelmaier ’11 and Sienna Courter ’11 reminded the tech crew of a meeting about Rent.

Gun Club President Will Rutter ’11 announced that the trap range would be open on Sunday.

John Cowles ’11 invited anyone interested to join him in painting the biodiesel building on Saturday and Sunday.

Ms. Perry asked for volunteers to help sort, load and distribute boxes of food for needy families and the elderly on Saturday.

Maggie Miller ’11 announced that on January 29, Thacher would host its first ever TOADfest—akin to a giant coffeehouse—and asked students to start thinking about acts.

Around Campus:

Mr. Okin and Mr. Duykaerts led a camping trip up the Red Reef Trail to help pack in supplies for the National Forest Service.  Cayce Cover ’12 captained the trip, and Cody Renfrew ’13, Lachlan Nutting ’14, Paul Cresanta ’13 and Sandy Ballou ’13 also participated.  The group slept in a windstorm and dealt with a colicky horse, but they enjoyed a beautiful evening and got all of the lumber to the drop point safely.

On Saturday night, students enjoyed the first coffeehouse of the year.

Also on Saturday, a small group of freshman boys (Caleb Couterie ’14, Pascal Ceaver-Corey ’14 and Alex Morris ’14) traveled over the ridge into the Sespe for an overnight camping trip with Mr. Okin.  The group walked through no fewer than nine icy pools, five of which were deep enough to jump into.

Week of 11/15/10:

Marlon Miller ’12 announced that he would be presenting the results of his fall Independent Afternoon Project in drumming on Wednesday in the Music Room.

PTS president Chris Colson ’11 welcomed the newest members, Joe Walton ’13 and Amy Feldman ’13.

Mr. Schryver reminded all riders that they would be riding to pasture on Wednesday afternoon.

Ms. Mahoney congratulated the Equestrian Team for its strong performance in the IEA that Thacher hosted on Saturday.  The team finished 1st on Saturday and 3rd in Sunday’s competition, and Dallas Thayer ’11 won the Sportsmanship Award for the whole event.

Mr. Hooper thanked Mr. Pidduck, Mr. Manson and the climbers who ventured to the Salton Sea for the Thacher playoff football game.  The climbers were in Joshua Tree for a climbing weekend and made the two-hour drive to cheer on the Toads.

Ms. McMahon announced that Jackson Baldwin ’14 is the freshman class president.

Mr. Fagan gave the girls varsity tennis end of season wrap up.  The team qualified for the CIF playoffs after beating Laguna Blanca at home.  The team’s MVP was Lauren Butler ’12; Lisa Lark nabbed Most Improved honors, and Co-captain Jo Min got the “Coach’s Recognition Award.”  Next year’s captains will be Katherine Krey ’12 and Lauren Butler ’12.

Mr. Mulligan reported that Joe Bell ’12 and Will Kirkland ’12 were heading to Mutau Flats for the first few days of Thanksgiving vacation to camp, just like Thacher boys of the 1920’s.  He also wished the football team and the cross-country teams in their next rounds of CIF playoff competition.

Mr. Haggard announced that the Winter Musical would be the high school version of Rent.  Auditions begin immediately after vacation.

Indoor Committee co-heads (and seniors) Ebony Davis and Marco Hernandez announced that the first coffeehouse of the year is coming up on Saturday, December 4.

Ms. McMahon reminded everyone traveling to pack and double-check to be sure to have necessary passports and ID’s.

The School Chair announced that she is organizing a Community Council meeting for after Thanksgiving Break.

Around Campus:

Students enjoyed a dance in the Commons on the final night before leaving for vacation.

Week of 11/8/10:

Mr. Mulligan thanked the mounted flag runners (Cayce Cover ’11 and Olivia Stonehouse ’10) and Eva Batella-Mann ’12 for performing the National Anthem at the Cate football game on Saturday.

Mr. Mazzola encouraged everyone to pack the gym for the girls varsity volleyball home game against St. Monica High School.

Mr. Carney gave the jv girls tennis end of season wrap up.  The squad finished with a record of 1-1.  Minah Choi ’13 and Sarah Ratsimbazafy ’12 earned Most Inspirational while Cynthia Santos ’11 notched Most Valuable player. Nu Xiong ’12 was the Most Improved Player.

Mr. Duykaerts and Mr. Okin asked for students interested in helping with Red Reef Trail restoration and camping to see them after assembly.  They are working with the National Forest Service to help pack in lumber and other supplies.

Mr. Haggard introduced Joel Horswell, the new saxophone teacher.  He deemed him “the best sax player that I know.”

Mr. Pidduck honored the newest crop of B Campers: Andrew Atwong ’12, Ben Eastburn ’11, Amy Feldman ’13, Juliana Childs ’13, Robbie Yeagle ’11, Elena McGahey ’13, Maddie McMorrow ’13, Alec Grushkin ’11, Raquel Reisinger ’11, Sienna Courter ’11, Joe Walton ’13 and Nan Macmillan ’13.  These students earned their B camper rating through completing a NOLS course over the summer or passing an exam, learning First aid and completing 100 yards of trail maintenance here on campus.

Mr. Okin congratulated Jarrett Kong ’13 as the newest member of the Silver Dollar Club.

Ms. Hooper and the Indoor Heads conducted an impromptu round of trivia questions at assembly to get the word out about the upcoming Trivia Night in the Study Hall.

Dr. Vyhnal offered the end of season wrap up for the girls jv volleyball team.  He dubbed it a “remarkable season,” given that he began with just 5 upperclassmen—and it takes 6 to play a match.  Bolstered by freshmen, the team swept Cate for the second year in a row and finished with a record of 11-3, losing only to Laguna Blanca in league play.  He also thanked captain Maggie Miller ’11 for her excellent leadership on the court and behind the scenes.

Though both cross-country teams were heading to the post season, Mr. Coleman gave the end of season wrap up and awards.  The Most Improved Novice Runner was Shravan Rajasekaran; Justin Myles ’13 was the Most Improved Varsity Runner; senior and captain Will Callan notched both Most Inspirational and Most Valuable.  Andrew Atwong ’12 and Ian Bearden ’12 will serve as co-captains next season.  On the girls’ side, Emma Whitley was the Most Improved Novice Runner, and Hutton Becker was the Most Improved Varsity Runner. Captain Lili Pike ’11 earned Most Inspirational Runner while newcomer Melanie Reimer ’13 notched Most Valuable Runner honors.  Co-captains for next year will be Jasmynn Roman ’13 and Melanie Reimer ’13.

Representing the EAC, Scott Lee ’11 announced that anyone interested could come and plant 75 Coastal Live Oaks over the weekend.

Sword Club president Will Rutter ’11 thanked everyone who donated their pumpkins and other assorted gourds for a Sword Club event.

Equestrian Team Co-Captains Avery Hellman ’11 and Mary Ellen Funke ’11 encouraged anyone interested to come and watch the IEA horse show that Thacher was hosting over the weekend.

Chris Colson invited people to come to the PTS barbecue at the horse show, and he announced the two newest members of PTS: Hailey Everett ’12 and Alice Hyde ’12.

Mr. Mieczszanski asked that anyone interested in filmmaking come and speak with him about doing some filming work for new admissions videos.

Around Campus:

With the football game at the Salton Sea causing the play to be canceled, Ms. Vickery held court with Trivia Night in the Study Hall.  About 8 teams of 8-10 students competed in four rounds of trivia questions that ranged from snippets of songs to identify to a map of the Ojai Arcade to be labeled to geography and, of course, some math questions.

@Assembly, 11/1/10

Maggie Miller ’11 announced that this is the last week of the Green Cup Challenge.

Mr. Coleman offered a thank you to all who helped at the jv cross-country meet, and in particular Mr. Perry for his help at the finish line and Mr. Sawyer for his help with scoring.

Mr. Mulligan thanked everyone who helped make Family Weekend a success, including all faculty and staff.

Ms. Mazzola reminded everyone that the Princeton Tigertones would be performing after Formal Dinner in the PAC.

Raul Soto ’13 announced that the jv football team had its last game coming up on Wednesday, and he wondered if anyone would be willing to drive a fan van to the game.

Mr. Jacobsen spoke about his upcoming trip to Kenya in the summer of 2011, which is open to anyone in the Thacher community.  The trip will feature travel to four different ecosystems and cultures in Kenya.

The School Chair ’11 thanked Garen Fabian ’12 for the Snack Bar in the Commons, held on Tuesday during 9:30-10.

Mr. Coleman reminded the cross-country team to be at the town bus by 1:30 for the league championships.

Brandon Green ’11 invited anyone interested to play a Go! Game in the library after school.

Mr. Haggard reminded students that applications for Independent Afternoon Projects are due.

Joe Bell ’12 asked for volunteers for Ojai Creek Clean up on Saturday in Libby Park.

Molly Perry asked that any students interested in participating in Best Day at the Beach in Ventura on Sunday contact her.

Alec Grushkin ’11 announced a Senior Class food drive to benefit Help of Ojai, which will take place over the next two weeks.

Dan Hu ’11 announced the most recent results of the Green Cup Challenge, with Middle School in first place for biggest energy reduction.

Sword Club president Will Rutter ’11 announced that club members would be repurposing Halloween pumpkins on Saturday,

Cross-Country captains Will Callan ’11 and Lili Pike ’11 presented Mr. Mulligan with two Condor League Championship bowls, as both the boys and girls cross-country teams captured league titles at the final meet held at Ojai Valley School.  Both teams now move on to the CIF prelims.

Ms. Hooper announced that all buses to Santa Barbara for Saturday night are currently full.

Indoor Committee heads John Cowles ’11 and Carson Land ’11 invited the community out to the gymkhana field for a bonfire and s’mores on Friday night.

Ana Urgiles ’13 and Kallie O’Connor ’13 said that there would be a French table at Formal dinner.

Leo Turpan ’12 asked that anyone interested in surfing over the weekend contact him.

Ms. Nixon-Bonett announced that Drew Horton CdeP 1982 would be screening his documentary on indigenous peoples of the Congo in the Milligan Center on Friday night.

Around Campus:

Students ended Family Weekend with a Halloween Costume Contest in the Commons.  MC’ed by Indoor Heads John Cowles ’11 and Carson Land ’11, several categories were awarded, including Most Creative and Funniest, as well as bet Faculty Impersonation.

On Monday, students left Assembly downhearted, as no holiday had been called,  Fortunately, the Princeton Tigertones delivered the good news with a musical ditty at the end of formal dinner that evening.  The school packed the PAC for their performance.  They then headed to the Study Hall to celebrate with a dance.

On Friday night, over half of the school headed to the Gymkhana Field to enjoy a bonfire with s’mores and music.

Saturday evening brought the first Santa Barbara night of the year, as students headed into the city for shopping, dining and movie watching. Those on campus had a cozy time—and all the cookies they could down—at Open House.

@Assembly, 10/25/10


Jo Min ’11, Alec Grushkin ’11 and Erin Chisholm ’11 announced the winner of the School Photography Contest.  Honorable Mention went to Mr. Vickery, Melissa Vickery CdeP 2003, Paige Bowie ’12, Ms. Vancisin, Paule Voevodsky ’12 and Eva Batalla-Mann ’13.  Senior Hannah Norman’s photo of Bird and Beer took the top prize.  The trio thanked Jesse Garrett ’11, Mr. Pidduck and Ms. Mahoney with their help as well.

Trevor Mulchay ’11, Kalieb Kelbisow ’12, Sarah Cresto ’12, Henry Field ’12, Chasen Smith ’12 and Alec Grushkin ’11 invited the community to the Sir Winston Churchill Debate Society’s evening event, a debate on Proposition 19.

Mr. Mulligan thanked the Xu family (parents of Michael ’12) for hosting the McMahons on their trip to China.

Community Service Heads Erin Chisholm ’11 and Andrew Kim ’11 invited any students interested to participate in an all-day Sunday event in Ventura hosted by the Best Day Foundation to teach disabled children how to swim and surf.

School Chair Avery Hellman invited anyone interested to participate in a conversation about clubs at Thacher.  Her goal is to help clubs develop a mission statement and ideas for how they can create ongoing activities.

Lili Pike ’11 said that the only home jv cross-country meet of the year was happening on Wednesday, and she encouraged people to come out and support the team.

Mr. Mieszczanski said that there was a barber on campus, ready to provide haircuts in time for Family Weekend.

Indoor Committee Co-Head John Cowles announced that Halloween is still on.  Indoor is holding a Costume Contest in the Commons on Sunday evening.

Maggie Miller ’11 and Dan Hu ’11 announced the most recent standings in the Green Cup Challenge Preview.  Los Padres took first place this week.

Will Rutter ’11 announced that the Trap Range would be open on Sunday.

Scott Lee announced that a TS2 CD would be on sale, and all profits would benefit the Microfinance Club and its work to give women equal access in Afghanistan, Indian and Pakistan.

@Assembly, 10/18/10

Aidan Waugh ’14, on behalf of Amnesty International, read some information regarding the mentally disabled and the death penalty.

Literary Society Co-Head Trevor Mulchay ’11 invited anyone interested to come to the Literary Society meeting on Tuesday night, which had a Halloween theme.

Ms. Mahoney congratulated Mary Ellen Funke ’13, who participated in a special horse show that she had qualified for last spring.  In this show Mary Ellen had to design her own course, and she finished 3rd, riding on Riley.

Environmental Action Committee co-Chair Avery Hellman ’13 announced that Mr. Evans, Head of Maintenance, would be discussing water usage at Thacher after formal dinner in the Thacher Room.

Robbie Yeagle ’11 announced that there would be a drum circle after formal dinner on Sunday evening on the Pergola.

Erich Herzig ’14 asked that anyone interested in starting a Rowing Club contact him to participate in an Instructional Rowing Day on Lake Casitas on November 14.

Brandon Green ’11 and Dallas Thayer ’11 announced the formation of Thacher’s own Glee Club.  Anyone interested should come to a meeting after Formal Dinner on Thursday night.

Amnesty International co-Head Marco Hernandez ’11 said that the group would be selling doughnuts in the Commons at 9:30 and giving out free hugs.

School Chair Avery Hellman ’11 said that she would be posting the minutes of Community Council meetings on the Kiosk on First Class for anyone to read.

John Cowles ’11 invited anyone in the community to join him in building a roof for the biodiesel tank out at the Gymkhana Field over the weekend.

Ms. Hooper announced that Sam Lardner would be playing on the Pergola on Friday evening.

Ms. Mazzola announced that MountainFilm Festival would be at Thacher on Saturday night in the Milligan Center.

Mr. Mulligan welcomed Faculty Emeritus Jack Huyler back to campus.

Mr. Schryver congratulated Lilly Haggard ’12 on earning her Advanced Rider status.

Olivia Stonehouse ’11 announced that she and Dr. Finch were heading to pasture over the weekend to collect and reassemble a horse skeleton as a part of the Veterinary Medicine Club.  Anyone interested in joining the project should contact her.

Chris Yih ’12 said that he would be putting together a fan van for any students interested in heading to Cate to support Thacher teams that were facing off against the Rams on their Family Weekend.

Chase Smith ’12 and Paige Bowie ’12, the Surf Club Heads, invited anyone interested to come to a meeting for planning.

Gun Club President Will Rutter ’12 said that the Trap Range would be open on Sunday for shooting.  Various firearms would be involved.

Noelani Nasser ’11 and Mouna Lawrence ’11, co Heads of the United Cultures of Thacher, asked that anyone interested in helping to create a mission statement come to the group’s meeting on Sunday night after Formal Dinner.

Around Campus:


In an event spearheaded by Chris Land and his son Carson ’11 and daughter Beatrice ‘14, about twenty members of the Thacher community headed to Santa Barbara on Sunday October 18th to participate in the Cancer Center’s 5K/10K run walk.  With participants in both distances, Thacher had a good showing and enjoyed the camaraderie of the morning.

Despite the foggy overcast weather, several groups camped over the weekend of October 17-18.  Mr. McGowan, Will Kirkland ’13 and Joe Bell ’13 headed into the San Gorgonio Wilderness for an overnight trip.  Mr. Manson and Mr. Pidduck spent two nights on the east side of the Sierra in the Mammoth area on a climbing trip with Patrick Teague ’11, Robbie Yeagle ’11 and Ben Eastburn ‘11.

On Friday evening, students enjoyed live music in the Commons from musician Sam Lardner, along with a barbecue on the Pergola.  They then headed to Lower School common room for an impromptu dance.

Saturday brought MountainFilm to Thacher.  Students enjoyed film shorts on topics ranging from a free solo on Yosemite’s Half Dome to the life cycle of a plastic bag.  Afterwards, they got active in the gym with basketball, football and handball occurring simultaneously. The climbing wall was open as well.

For the first time this year, the Cheese Club met on Sunday afternoon.  Members enjoyed some offerings from Cowgirl Creamery, including a green rind goat cheese and an herbed brie, as well as fresh fruit and bread from the farmers’ market.  Club heads Katie Taylor ’11 and Noelani Nasser ’11 organized the event.

@Assembly, Week of 10/11/10:


Eva Batalla-Mann ’12 and Marco Hernandez ’11, representing Amnesty International, asked that the Thacher community consider wearing white to raise awareness of injustices and corruption around the death penalty. (They sent out website links to help clarify the situations that are the focus of AI’s initiative.)

Grace Lowe ’11 and Noelani Nasser ’11, Co-heads of The Spectrum, talked about National Coming Out Day, which began in March 1987.

Maggie Miller ’11, as co-leader in the Green Cup Challenge, talked about opening your curtains rather than turning on lamps when you feel that you need more light.

Lauren Butler ’12, Sarah Cresto ’12 and Emily Jordan ’12, co-heads of the Microfinance Club, announced that the club would be selling In-N-Out in the Commons on Tuesday night at 9:30 PM.

Mr. Mulligan invited all students to listen to virtuoso guitarist Eric Henderson on Saturday night in the Milligan Center.  Henderson is a Segovia protégé who has played with Jeff Beck.  He is particularly known for his Jimmy Hendrix renditions, which he plays on classical guitar.

Mr. Vickery announced that there is a women’s lacrosse tournament at UCSB on Sunday, if anyone is interested in playing as a walk-on.

Mouna Lawrence and David Andrade gave the final accounting for the interdorm Change4Change competition to raise money to rebuild schools in Northern Uganda.  Casa emerged victorious with $327 raised, while the total amount contributed by students, faculty and staff topped over $800.  This was the first endeavor in a year-long initiative.  Mouna and David also asked for volunteers who might be willing to help roll the change.

Dan Hu ’11 and Maggie Miller ’11 said that they would be posting initial numbers for dorm energy reduction over email.

At Friday’s assembly, Mr. Mulligan introduced Nick Thacher, life-long educator and the grandson of Thacher founder Sherman Day Thacher.  Nick then told the story of how the Toad came to be the school’s mascot, as he was directly involved in the campaign for the Toad (over the Cowboys, Mustangs and Scholars).

Mr. Haggard announced that any students interested in attending a rehearsal of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony in Santa Barbara should contact him.  He also asked that anyone interested in attending a guitar workshop on Sunday morning with Eric Henderson contact him as well.

Mr. Elmore invited anyone interested to come to his house for Premier League and Pancakes on Saturday morning at 9:30.

Madison Rubeli ’14, Cooper Penner ’14, Lili Boyle ’14 and Jackson Dolphin announced the formation of the Leatherworking Club with Mr. Duykaerts.  

Sarah Cresto ’13 read a news item on behalf of the Current Events club about the rescue of the 33 Chilean miners this week.

Co-Indoor Committee heads Marco Hernandez ’11 and Carson Land ’11 announced the Glow in the Dark games on the Upper Field for Saturday night.  Games would include whiffle ball, football and ultimate Frisbee.

Ms. Hooper reviewed details regarding Ojai Night and the Ventura Bus trip.

Around Campus:

On Friday night, about 100 students headed into town for Ojai Night.  They enjoyed a meal with friends, and some stuck around to see the movie showing at the Ojai Playhouse: The Social Network.  Others returned to campus for a viewing of Paranormal Activity in the creepy setting of the Outdoor Theatre.  The foggy evening enhanced the atmosphere.

Saturday brought Eric Henderson to our campus for an evening of virtuoso guitar playing.  After the concert, students turned out on the Upper Field for some glow-in-the dark games or headed to the Mulligans’ for Open House.

The first Ventura bus trip of the year pulled out from the Upper Field on Sunday, with a full load of 39 students ready to hit the city.  Some headed to the mall, while others poked around downtown Ventura’s thrift stores and coffee shops.  All returned by 5:15 PM, in time for Formal Dinner.

@Assembly, Week of 10/4/10


Mr. Haggard began the week with the words, “I don’t have a TOAD talk, I have a TOAD song.”  He talked about the importance of kindness in the world and then launched into a rendition of James Taylor’s “Shower the People With Love,” accompanied by student vocalists and instrumentalists. Paul Cresanta ’13, Scott Lee ’11, Dallas Thayer ’11, Jaqueline King ’13 and Nan Macmilllan ’13 all sang with him while Jacob Nelson ’13 played drums and Evan Farese ’13 played guitar.

Mr. Coleman announced the people in the community who made it into the Mile Clubs this summer. Each year, beginning in June, people in the Thacher community from students to staff, can log running miles, with the closing date coinciding with the commencement of pre-season for cross-country at the beginning of September. Members logged enough miles to make the 100, 200 or 300 mile clubs, while Mr. Sawyer created the first ever 700 mile club, with total mileage of 768 miles. Mr. Sawyer logged enough miles this summer to run from Ojai to Petaluma, CA, and back. Every person in a mileage club gets a t-shirt.

Liza DiNizio ’12, Jackson Howard ‘12 and Paule Voevodsky ’12 announced that there would be a sign language club meeting.

Indoor Committee Heads Carson Land ’11, Joe Bell ’12, and John Cowles ’11 practiced their bum-set-spike abilities on stage and then paused to announce the All-School Volleyball Tournament for Friday night.  All teams had to have two girls and two freshmen, and the members and team name had to be sent to Ms. Hooper by Friday.

Senior class president Alec Grushkin thanked Mr. Shagam and Mr. Jacobsen for their help with the freshmen-senior barbecue, held on Sunday.

School Chair Avery Hellman ’11 announced the newest members of the Judicial Council: Mackenzie Boss ’11, Chris Dienst ’11 and Katie Taylor ’11.

Literary Society Head Trevor Mulchay ’11 invited anyone interested to come to the weekly Lit Society meeting after formal dinner on Tuesday night.

Dan Hu ’11 and Maggie Miller ’11, who are overseeing the Green Cup Challenge this year, said that they will be introducing a new way to save energy each week for people to focus on in their daily lives.  This week they talked about how much passive energy is used in the US due to things that are plugged in but not in use, like cell phone chargers or curling irons, and they encouraged the community to try and unplug things to make a dent in this waste here on campus.

Paul Cresanta ’13 burst across the mid-audience walkway, chasing Jasmynn Roman ’13 through the PAC.  Jasmynn called for help and was fortunately rescued by Spiderman and Superman, who soon revealed themselves as Brittany Holden ’13 and Ana Urgiles ’13.  This group then announced that on Saturday night, the Comic Book Club would be holding an assigned date Superhero dance on Saturday night.

Tawni Stoop ’11 read the senior quotation for the day: “Wherever you go, always bring your own sunshine.”  This seemed particularly apt with the rainy day we were all experiencing.

Co-Editor of The Notes, Sara Brody ’11, called for articles from the community for the newspaper’s next issue.

Lili Pike ’11 invited anyone interested to join the Chinese Club table at formal dinner on Thursday.  When language clubs host tables at formal dinner, the entire meal and conversation occurs in that language.

Jina Yun ’11, Richy Yun ’11 and Andrew Kim ’11 introduced themselves as the Math Club heads and said that the first meeting would be held after formal dinner on Thursday.  Anyone interested was welcome to join.

Amnesty International Heads Steffi Star ’11, Mary Ellen Funke ’11 and Marco Hernandez ’11 said that the group is going to focus on raising money for the ongoing crisis in Darfur.  Their first effort was a donut sale in the Commons on Thursday night during 9:30-10.

Marco Hernandez ’11 and Sandy Ballou ’13 announced the merger of the Country Music Club and the Country Music Appreciation Club.

Mouna Lawrence ’11, who is spearheading the Schools for Schools campaign to raise money for rebuilding schools in Northern Uganda, gave an update on the Change for Change competition between dorms.  Los Padres was leading with 113 dollars while Lower School figured in last, with 17 dollars.  However, this was better than Upper School, which still did not have a jug.

Marco Hernandez ’11 thanked everyone who bought donuts at the sale in the commons, as Amnesty International raised $300 for the crisis in Darfur.

Mr. Manson announced that the climbing wall would be open during the volleyball tournament.  No experience necessary to participate.

Josh Cho ’13 and Daniel Kruth ’13 encouraged all comers to try out the Chess Club.

Mr. Carney announced the names of those who made the 10,000-Shot Club over the summer: Hutton Becker ’13, Timothy Kent ’12, Michael Xu ’13, Alec Grushkin ’13 and Dan Hu ’13.  Dan is now a member three times over, and has shot the equivalent of 128 miles of jump shots, essentially shooting his way to the Santa Barbara airport and back.

Mr. Jacobsen and Ms. Hooper both offered to take interested students to the Faith Baptist football game on Saturday.

Mr. Haggard reminded everyone to pick up after themselves in the Dining Hall.

Environmental Action Committee members Lili Pike ’11 and Scott Lee ’11 invited the community to participate in planting four trees on campus on Sunday morning as part of 350.org, which is hosting a Global Work Party.

Mr. Mazzola announced that both of the cross-country teams, the football team and the girls volleyball team are currently ranked in the CIF Southern Section.  

Around campus:


On Tuesday night after formal dinner, student listened to Lili Pike ’11, who gave a photo-and-commentary presentation on her year at School Year Abroad in China.

On Friday night, students packed the gym to watch the girls volleyball team take on and beat Santa Clara High School.  They stuck around for their own all-school volleyball tournament, which featured eleven teams, good music, ice cream sundae fixins and a pizza party for the winning team, which featured team members
Jackson Howard ’12, Lucas Currie ’12, Sarah Hancock ’12, Carson Land ’11, Mackenzie Boss ’11, Calum McGuckin ’13, Lili Boyle ’14 and Jackson Dolphin ’14.

Saturday night, students donned masks and capes, leotards and tights, picked up their dates (all arranged by the Indoor Committee), and headed for the Student Center for the Superhero Dance, the first assigned date dance of the year.  At assigned date dances, every student in the school gets a date, and after arriving at the dance together, the couple dances the first song.

@Assembly, Week of 9/27/10:

Grace Lowe ’11, Brandon Green ’11 and Jack Sligh ’11 introduced themselves as the founders of the Music Guild Society, and they invited anyone interested to join them for the Guild’s first meeting after formal dinner on Tuesday night.

Marco Hernandez ’11 announced that Ms. Perry would be holding a Spanish table at formal dinner for those interested.

With the heat wave upon us, Mr. Robinson reminded everyone to hydrate, as the thermometer was predicted to hit 111.5 degrees.  He also substituted a poolside BBQ for formal dinner.

Sara Brody ‘11 announced that it was National Banned Books Week and suggested that in celebration everyone should read a banned book.

School Chair Avery Hellman ‘11 told everyone that Judicial Council elections would be held on Friday, and encouraged the community to be thoughtful about casting their votes.  She said that the eight candidates’ essays were posted by the toaster and would be up all week for people to read.  

She also thanked the snack makers for their work at the first “Snack Night” and asked for feedback on the event.

Last, Avery invited anyone interested to come to the first Community Council Meeting in the Thacher Room to talk about the appropriateness of Thacher dances.

Katherine Krey ’12 announced that there would be a Gun Club meeting on Wednesday night.

Daniel Kruth ’13 and Josh Cho ’13 are “rebooting” the Chess Club, and said that the group would have its first meeting after formal dinner on Thursday.

Mr. Mulligan congratulated students who earned National Merit Semi-Finalist status: Graham Abbey ’11, Peyton Chesley ’11, Maggie Miller ’11, Jina Yun ’11, and Bryanna Lloyd ’11.  He also congratulated the Commended Scholars: Jesse Garrett ’11, Dan Hu ’11, Trevor Mulchay ’11, Hannah Norman ’11, Richy Yun ’11, Raquel Reisinger ’11, Will Rutter ’11.  Tawni Stoop ’11 was recognized in the National Hispanic Scholars Program, while AhKeyah Allahjah ’11, Ebony Davis ’11 and Brandon Green ’11 all were Commended Scholars in the National Achievement Program.

Steffi Star ’11 invited anyone interested to come to an Amnesty International meeting, to be held over brunch on Saturday.

Senior class president Alec Grushkin invited the freshman to a senior-freshman barbecue on Sunday afternoon.

Lili Pike ’11 announced that she would be doing a presentation on her year in Beijing through School Year Abroad after formal dinner next Tuesday night.

Football captains Jake Gannon ’11 and Chris Colson ’11 announced that the team’s first home game would be on Sunday afternoon.

Indoor Head Dallas Thayer ’11 played fan favorite “Wagon Wheel” to get everyone  excited about the Jam Session and Taco truck on the Pergola for Friday night.

Current Events co-Heads Chris Dienst ’11 and Mary Ellen Funke ’11 announced that anyone interested could come to the Club’s outing to UC-SB to see the documentary film Restrepo, about the Afghanistan war.

Around Campus:
The Sir Winston Churchill Debate Society held its first debate of the year after formal dinner on Tuesday night.  The topic was Whether or not there should be a Muslim Center built near Ground Zero.  The dialogue was so stimulating that the event ran into the start of study hall, and Mr. Mulligan himself invited the audience to stay for its completion.

Students gathered on the Pergola to roast marshmallows around an outdoor fire pit for a jam session and sing-along on Friday night.  They also enjoyed the Taco Truck.

Saturday brought the first dormitory Open House of the year in Upper School.  The dorm opens its doors to the community, and everyone comes over to visit.  There was lots of food served, with donuts proving to be the highlight.

@Assembly, 9/20/10


Mr. Carney kicked off his TOAD week with thoughts on 10 things he learned this summer.

Joe Bell ’12 asked that anyone interested in playing baseball come to Mr. Mazzola’s house after formal dinner on Tuesday night to learn more about the possibility of traveling to the Dominican Republic for Spring Break.

Volleyball co-captains Mackenzie Boss ’11 and Sarah Hancock ‘12, as well as the entire volleyball team, stood up to present Mr. Mulligan with the winning trophy, after the team took first place in the Santa Paula Volleyball tournament over the weekend.  They played six teams to win, many several times Thacher’s size, and it was the first time in 15 years that the team won the tournament.

Co-heads of the Literary Society Brandon Green ’11, Trevor Mulchay ’11, and Bryanna Lloyd ’11 announced their first Lit Society Meeting of the year, to be held on Tuesday night after formal dinner.

Mary Ellen Funke ’11 and Chris Dienst ’11, co-heads of the Current Events Club, invited everyone to “step outside of the Thacher bubble” and come to a meeting and take part in events sponsored by the group.

Noelani Nasser ’11 and Jasmynn Roman ’13 introduced the Asian Appreciation Club.

Alec Grushkin ’11 thanked Ms. McMahon, Mr. Shagam, Avery Hellman ’11 and Richard Maxwell for helping with the senior Beach Trip on Sunday.

School Chair Avery Hellman congratulated Henry Field ’12 for nabbing the first chair- stacking prize of the year.  Avery is planting prizes under the chairs in the dining room in an effort to encourage waiters at Formal Dinner to remember to flip their chairs off the floor and onto cleaned tables, which greatly helps the kitchen staff.

Sara Brody ’11 reminded everyone that Banned Book Week is coming up.  To get it started, anyone interested could come to the library to make posters on Wednesday afternoon.

Members of the Environmental Action Committee introduced themselves: John Cowles ‘11, in charge of biodiesel and composting; Avery Hellman ’11 in charge of gardening and composting; Scott Lee ’11 and Lili Pike ’11 in charge of orchards and gardens; Sienna Courter ’11 and Raquel Reisinger ’11 in charge of animal husbandry; Jensen Hodge ’11 in charge of Community Events; and Maggie Miller ’11 and Dan Hu ’11, in charge of Green Cup Challenge, in February.

Mr. Carney announced that Cynthia Santos ’11 and Rae Murphy ’11 will serve as captains of the girls jv tennis team this year.

Olivia Stonehouse ‘11 introduced the Vet Med Club.  This Club works with faculty member Dr. Kris Finch and evaluates the health of horses and faculty pets.

Marshall Gifford ’12 and Patrick Coughran ’12 asked that anyone interested join the Sailing Club, which will participate in day sails and regattas.

Cayce Cover ’12 and Cassie Disner ’12 congratulated Helen Brown ’12 who returned the High Point Champion in North America at the National Show for Peruvian Passas.

Josh Cho reminded the community that Wednesday was Korean Thanksgiving.

Mr. Maxwell announced that next Tuesday would be the Eat Local Challenge.  For this meal, all food served and ingredients used come from within 150 miles of Thacher.

Sarah Hancock ’12 and Anouk Ackerman ’12 announced that the Food Appreciation Club would be making orange marmalade.

Liam Driscoll ’13 and Justin Myles ’13 invited anyone interested to join them for the first convening of the Meditation Club on Monday morning in the Study Hall.

Mr. Jacobsen is taking a fan van down to the first football game, and he invited students to ride along with him.

Casa girls challenged the boys of Lower School to a game of dodgeball after check in on Friday night.  Raul Soto ’14 gamely accepted the challenge on behalf of his dorm, guaranteeing victory in the process.

Co-Indoor Heads John Cowles ’11 and Carson Land ’11 announced the neon body paint-black light dance slated for Saturday night, as well as the Chris Hawley Concert in the PAC on Friday.

This past summer, Jina Yun ’11 participated in a research program at UC-Davis.  As a final step in her work, she must present her research at school.  She invited anyone interested to come listen to her in the Thacher Room after formal dinner on Sunday.

Richy Yun ’11, Jesse Gonzalez ’11 and Marquis Warren announced the kick off of the school-wide ping-pong tournament, with details to follow via email.

Fred Coleman congratulated girls cross-country captain Lili Pike ’11.

Mr. Elmore invited anyone interested up to his house for Premier League Soccer and pancakes at 9 AM.

Sarah Cresto ’12, Lauren Butler ’12 and Emily Jordan ’12, co-heads of the Micro-Finance Club, announced their first meeting of the year after formal dinner on Sunday night. 

Tawni Stoop ’11 reminded people that their ToadBlogger applications are due by check in on Friday.

Sra. Ortiz encouraged the community to take the time and take a picture for Amnesty International’s photo drive this month.

Will Rutter ’11 and Scott Lee ’11 gave a short exhibition of some Sword Club moves and announced the first meeting of the year on the Upper School lawn on Sunday.

David Andrade ’11 invited anyone interested to come to several Swim Club workouts over this weekend.

Around Campus:

On Friday night, students gathered in the Milligan Center to enjoy Chris Hawley and the Hawley Rollers perform. 

Saturday night saw the first big dance of the year, as students danced under a black light in the Commons.
 
@Assembly, Week of 9/13/10

In the School’s first week of classes, three Assemblies gathered (the usual), and  there were new faces to introduce, clubs to join, names to remember, and events to look forward to.

Mr. Mulligan introduced new faculty and staff to the community: Patty Atkinson (Study Skills), Dana Vancisin (Photography, Horse Program), Kayla Elliott (Mathematics), Liz Witmer (Theater), and Brandon Doyle (Development).

Mr. Haggard encouraged any students interested to sign up to take Jazz Band and Chamber Ensemble as a part of their academic course selection.  Students can also sign up to take lessons in drums, guitar, voice, winds, brass, piano and saxophone.

Mr. Pidduck thanked the students who are Assistants to the Camping Director: Raquel Reisinger ’11, Sienna Courter ’11, Erin Chisholm ’11, Ben Eastburn ’11, and Will Rutter ’11.  All of these students did yeoman’s service in the days before Extra Day Trips departed outfitting students and faculty for their trips. 

He also expressed appreciation to new B campers Joe Bell ’12, Nan Macmillan ’13, Maddie McMorrow ’13 and Elena McGahey ’13.

Mr. Jensen announced the fall plays—Three on a Match.  Auditions occurred on Sunday in the Milligan Performing Arts Center.

Head Techs Leeah Sticklemaier ’11, Sienna Courter ’11 and Trevor Mulchay ’11 invited any interested students to join them in learning about tech work this year.

Marco Hernandez ’11, Lili Pike ’11, Steffi Star ’11 and Mackenzie Boss ’11, this year’s co-heads of Amnesty International, announced their first initiative to collect photos, each one meant to represent a political prisoner.

Mr. Hooper congratulated this year’s football captains, Jake Gannon ’11 and Chris Colson ’11.

A surprise visit from Sir Winston Churchill (or was it Robbie Yeagle ’11?), brought news of the Sir Winston Churchill Debate Society’s first topic: Should the Islamic Center near Ground Zero be relocated?  The debate will be held on Tuesday, September 28.

Chinese Club heads Jina Yun ’11 and Katie Taylor ’11 invited everyone to a tea.

Chasen Smith ’12 and Mr. Manson are teaming up with the Ojai Valley Land Conservancy to do some trail work on trails in various parts of the Valley.  Anyone interested was invited to join them on Saturday morning.

This year’s Indoor Committee Heads Ebony Davis ’11, Dallas Thayer ’11, AhKeyah Allahjah ’11, Marco Hernandez ’11, John Cowles ’11, Carson Land ’11 and Joe Bell ’12 introduced themselves and invited anyone interested to come to the first Open Meeting of the year in Wednesday night. 

Nan Macmillan ’13 and Grace Lowe ’11, co-Heads of the Christian Fellowship Club, invited anyone interested to come to the group’s first meeting on Wednesday night.

With the first edition of The Notes underway, editors Sara Brody ’11, Ben Eastburn ’11, Richy Yun ’11, and Bryanna Lloyd ’11, called for any and all articles to be submitted.

Tawni Stoop ’11, Head ToadBlogger, called for more Toads to join the cause.  Any interested students should email her.

Alice Hyde ’12 announced that there were four spots left for anyone interested in going to the Pirate Faire at Lake Casitas on Saturday.

David Andrade ’11 and Harry Hayman ’14 invited anyone interested to come to the Swim Club’s first workout session, which would feature … pizza. (Is there such a thing as a gustatory-kinesthetic oxymoron?)

Mr. Elmore announced that all who like pancakes and soccer were welcome to come to his house to watch some Premier League Soccer on Saturday morning.

Sandy Ballou revealed the newest edition to Thacher’s club scene: the CMACOT or Country Music Awareness Committee of Thacher.  The group is seeking a faculty sponsor.

Around Campus:

On Thursday night after formal dinner, several roadies from the organization Invisible Children did a presentation about the situation in Northern Uganda.  After twenty-four years of civil war, the region remains devastated from the strife caused by the People’s Liberation Army.  Invisible Children is working to rebuild schools in the region.  After the presentation, Thacher students formed a chapter of Schools for Schools to raise money for Keyo SS, a secondary school now returning to its original location and opening for students at the high school level.

On Friday night, a group of local Aztec dancers finished off the Indoor Committee’s Fiesta event with a thirty minute performance in the gym.  Complete with intensive drumming, extravagant feather headdresses and some serious rhythm, the group wowed the crowd.  Thacher’s own Leticia and Vanessa Carbajal are members and performed.
 
@Assembly, Week of 5/10/10:

Mr. Mulligan thanked everyone for their exceptionally hard work over Big Gymkhana Family Weekend. He said, “It was wonderful to see the way you let your parents into your Thacher lives.”

He went on to congratulate the juniors who have earned National Merit Commended Scholar status: Graham Abbey, Peyton Chesley, Jesse Garrett, Dan Hu, Bryanna Lloyd, Maggie Miller, Trevor Mulchay, Hannah Norman, Raquel Reisinger, Will Rutter, Jack Sligh, Leeah Sticklemeier, Tawni Stoop, Jina Yun and Richy Yun.

Michael Stenovec ’10 announced that the year’s final edition of The Notes would be coming out soon.

Patrick Teague ’11 announced that he would be doing his Independent Presentation on robots and rocketry in Room 14 on Wednesday night.

Lisea Lark ’12 encouraged everyone to come and support jv girls lacrosse in their final home game against Cate on the Upper Field.

Girls varsity lacrosse co-captains Natalie Swift ’10 and Katharine Gifford ’10 invited anyone interested to come and watch the girls team take on the boys varsity team on the New Field.

Mr. Pidduck spoke for some time about the importance of camping safety as the school community prepared for Extra Day Trips.  His topics ranged from swimming and water to fire safety.  He encouraged everyone to “proceed with caution,” to “support each other,” and to “be aware of our impact on the wilderness.”

Mr. Mazzola announced that Anouk Ackerman ’12, Claire Frykman ’10 and Austin Krause ’10 would compete in the CIF preliminary round in track and field on Saturday.

Indoor Head Lauren Joseph ’10 announced the Masquerade Ball for Saturday night.  Everyone should plan on wearing black with their masks, and assigned dates should be picked up at 8:30 PM.  People could either make a mask at Open House on Friday evening, or choose a pre-made one there.

Mr. Okin congratulated JJ Ntshaykolo ’13, Cody Renfrew ’13, Bea Taylor ’13, Grady Jacobsen ’13, Olivia Stonehouse ’11, Brisha Howe ’13, Shravan Rajasekaran ’13, Carson Leydecker ’13 and Wohona Delgadillo ’10 on successfully picking up the Silver Dollar.  He added that the three key ingredients to success are “courage, horsemanship and luck.”

Sarah Cresto ’12, a member of Thacher’s Microfinance Club, introduced Ann Proctor, a former Thacher parent and manager of Equal Access Afghanistan, a non-profit that helps widowed women in Afghanistan.  Ms. Proctor spoke to the community briefly and said that the $140 that Thacher provided as seed money for loans has become five thousand dollars to train one hundred women in tailoring skills and literacy.
 
@Assembly, 5/3/10:

Ms. Jones began the week with a TOAD talk focusing on the idea that “ you have to prove people wrong,” referring to the power of stereotypes.  To conclude, she walked the walk: in an attempt to overcome her fear of snakes, she actually touched one in front of the assembled, cheering crowd.  The Mahoneys’ family pet garter snake was the snake on hand for this.

Mr. Sawyer thanked the Lower School boys for catching his dogs, who escaped Sunday evening.

Class President Jensen Hodge ’11 thanked Ms. McMahon and the Hoopers for taking the juniors on a beach trip on Sunday.

Indoor Head Kyle Dietrich ’10 announced that the final coffeehouse of the year would be on May 28th.

Mr. Robinson reminded everyone to start working with their faculty advisors (and checking in with parents this weekend) on their course sign-ups for the Fall of 2010.

Sarra Wynn ’10 thanked the kitchen and maintenance staff for the food and materials they provided to make the Hades “Alice in Wonderland” dance a success.

TJ Kim thanked Mr. Jacobsen for organizing and chaperoning the 9th grade trip to Magic Mountain.

Georgi de Rham ’10 introduced her father, Jerry de Rham, as the Anacapa artist for the week.  He is a fine furniture maker and graduate of the North Bennett Street School.  Mr. de Rham assisted Mr. Bueti in Wood Design classes throughout the week as students worked to complete their pieces in time for display on Gymkhana Weekend.

Mr. Coleman announced the annual cross-country challenge, where members of the community can log their running miles over the summer to earn a spot in a particular mileage club.  Mr. Coleman is predicting that someone out there may hit 600 miles of for the summer, which runs from June 1 until students return to campus.

Max Hoffman ’10 congratulated Avery Hellman ’11 and Jake Gannon ’11 who each advanced to the School Chair final speeches.  On Wednesday Jake and Avery each gave their speech and answered many questions in a Q & A session.  On Friday, the community learned that Avery Hellman ’11 will serve as school chair for the 2010-2011 school year.

Mr. Pidduck announced that Nick Orr ‘10 and Alex Macmillan ’10 have formally earned their A camper rating.

The senior girls on the varsity lacrosse team asked for support from the community for their game against Laguna Blanca on the Upper Field, Friday afternoon, as it is the last game of the season for the team.

Mr. Haggard announced that the Chamber Choir earned a superior rating at the Southern California Choral Festival on Tuesday evening. They also performed “Lean on Me” at Assembly.

Mr. Perry thanked everyone who helped at the track meet on Wednesday.  Both the girls and boys teams finished in second place; the girls conceded first by a scant three points.  The meet’s most valuable runners were Austin Krause ‘10, who won the shot put, the long jump, the high jump and the triple jump, where he set a school and league record, and Claire Frykman ‘10, who ran the 100 hurdles, 400 meter and 200 meter dash, and the 300 meter hurdles, where she set a new school record.

Ms. Vickery invited the community to see the dance recital on Friday evening, which included five senior girls: Sarae Snyder, Sydney Bowie, Taryn Van Vliet, Laura Ammons and Jane Fisher.

Mr. Schryver announced the top ten Gymkhana riders going into the weekend: in first, Laura Benard ’10; 2 Will Rutter ’11; 3 Wohona Delgadillo ’10; 4 Miles Fossett ’12; 5 Marco Hernandez ’11; 6 Cayce Cover ’12; 7 Zane Schryver ’13; 8 Shravan Rajasekaran ’13; and tied for 9th, J-J Ntshaykolo ’13 and Chris Colson ’11.  Zane Schryver ’13 and Shravan Rajasekaran were vying for the top freshman rider spot.  Blue held first place going into the weekend, with Orange in second and Blue in third place.

Around Campus:

On Monday night, the Mulligans, Jake Jacobsen, and several Thacher students, including organizer Kyle Dietrich ’10, traveled to the Arlington Theatre in  Santa Barbara to hear writer David Sedaris.

About thirty Thacher students and faculty headed to Santa Barbara on Tuesday night to hear Greg Mortenson, founder of the Central Asia Institute and author of Three Cups of Tea and Stones into Schools speak about how he became involved in building schools in Afghanistan and Pakistan.  The Current Events club sponsored the trip, and Lectures and Concerts provided tickets as well.

Big Gymkhana Family Weekend arrived with a new format in place that included lots of performances and a live auction on Friday night.  Saturday’s big riding event arrived with a wave of heat and excitement as riders competed in events ranging from the birangle to ring spearing.  Saturday evening brought performances from the Jazz Band, Chamber Ensemble, Freshman/Sophomore Chorus, Chamber Singers and Dance Ensemble.  Interspersed between each were Gymkhana Awards, both of the day and of the season.  Many then hoofed it over to the Mullys’ home for Open House. The weekend’s activities closed with brunch, a service at the Outdoor Chapel, and trap-shooting on Sunday morning.
 
@Assembly: Week of 4/26

Ms. Vickery began the week with a TOAD talk focusing on the questions: “Cheaters never win—or do they?”

Ms. McMahon reminded the community about the role of formal dinner in our lives, saying, “It allows us to learn more about others who live in this community.”  To that end, she stressed the importance of signing out in a timely fashion and about limiting the number of people serving in the back at any one time.

Mr. Sawyer announced that he would be overseeing Rescue Race practice and qualifying out at the Gymkhana Field.

Mr. Okin introduced Anacapa Artist Duke Beardsley to the community.  Mr. Beardsley is a Middlebury graduate and a contemporary western artist.  

Mr. Mulligan thanked Mr. Hooper for his work orchestrating the Senior Exhibition Program.  He also thanked Pete Fagan who oversaw Thacher’s involvement with The Ojai Tennis Tournament.

Ms. Mahoney reported on the work on the Thacher English riders who competed at the IEA Nationals in Georgia.  Ashley Sauvain ’10, Georgi de Rham ’10, Hailey Everett ’12 and Ellie Hancock ’13 all traveled to Atlanta for the event.  Hailey placed 8th in her class, while Georgi finished 4th overall and earned $2100 in the bargain.

Mr. Schryver congratulated Will Rutter ’11 for earning his Horseman status—at present the only such honor-holder in the School.

Max Hoffman ’10 announced on Wednesday that it was Staff Appreciation Day and that seniors would be serving lunch on the lawn.  He also announced that Judicial Council elections would be held this week, introducing the first time that students were voting explicitly for a girl and a boy.  Later in the week, Mary Ellen Funke ’11 and Will Callan ’11 were announced as the new members of the Council.

Mr. Schryver announced the Top Ten riders going into Gymkhana, adding, “What sticks in my mind are not the scores or the times but a perfect turn or step, when horse and rider in harmony.”  Top freshman rider is Zane Schryver ’13.  The Top Ten overall include Lilly Haggard ’12 at number 10; 9 Shravan Rajasekaran ’13; 8 Zane Schryver ’13; 7 Casey Cover ’12; 6 Chris Colson ’11; 5 Miles Fossett ’12; 4 Marco Hernandez ’11; 3 Wohona Delgadillo ’10; 2 Will Rutter ’11; and holding on to the number one spot for second week, Laura Benard ’10.  Green remained in third place, orange in second, and blue in first.

Mr. Robinson invited people to walk through his rose garden, currently in full bloom.  [The rose garden is modeled on the sort created in Charleston, SC, where Bonnie Robinson—Peter’s wife and a beloved teacher-administrator here for years—grew up.]

Mr. Haggard invited interested students to attend a workshop before the Bengsons, Ol’ Zombie Nationalists, concert on Friday in the Music Room.  He reminded students of the trip to the Herbie Hancock concert on Sunday night, and that there would be a drum circle on Sunday night with Judy Piazza after formal dinner.

Dan Hu ’11, organizer of this year’s 3 v 3 basketball tournament, asked that interested teams send in their rosters.

Kyle Dietrich ’10 announced a trip to hear writer David Sedaris at UCSB on Monday night.  People should contact him if interested.

Chris Dienst ’11 and Mary Ellen Funke ‘11 reminded students of the Greg Mortenson lecture coming up on Tuesday night at UCSB.

Mr. Klausler announced that AP testing would be going on in the gym over the next two weeks.  

Ms. McMahon revealed that the college band Filligar would be playing at Thacher on May 22nd, and she went on to announce two auction items related to the band.  Students can win the opportunity to do a workshop with them beforehand or a party with them backstage, which includes passes to other shows they will be playing around the US this summer.

Mr. Mazzola announced the weekend’s sporting events, including the Ventura Country Track Championships taking place on Friday.  Thacher’s own Lauren Joseph ’10 and Anouk Ackerman ’12 qualified for and competed in the event.

Around Campus:

Over the course of the week, Anacapa Artist Duke Beardsley worked with students in art classes and spent time painting on the Pergola and in the Commons.  He also gave a talk after formal dinner on Tuesday night.  To learn more about his work, go to: http://dukebeardsleystudio.com

On Wednesday night Thacher hosted notable writer Thomas Friedman, author of The World is Flat and Hot, Flat and Crowded.  In front of a packed Milligan Center audience, Mr. Friedman outlined what he considers the five most pressing problems in the world today and went on to say that they all had one solution: clean, cheap, abundant electrons.  During the question and answer session, Mr. Friedman fielded one final question from School Chair Max Hoffman, who asked how students could get this energy instantaneously.  Mr. Friedman replied that he thought everyone needed a holiday.  The cheers from the multitudes shook the rafters.  Students danced away the night in the Commons and enjoyed Taco Bell, and on Thursday spent time in town or catching up on work here on campus.

Mr. Pidduck, Alex Macmillan ’10, Nick Orr ’10, Shawn Keyani ’10 and Charlie Sun ‘10 left campus on the holiday and headed out into the Sespe for three day two night camping trip.  The group started at Camp Schiedeck and finished at Piedra Blanca on Saturday.  Captaining and completing this trip meant that Alex and Nick have earned their A camper rating.

Stephen Huyler CdeP ’69 gave a lecture and screened an award-winning film in the Milligan Center on Thursday night on women’s identity and art in India.

Mr. Omansiek took Laura Ammons ’10, Ashley Sauvain ’10, Amy Kim ’13, Parker Dawson ’13 and Jesse Gates ’12 to camp at Carpinteria State Beach on Friday night.  The group arrived in the late afternoon and took long walks, collected rocks, sat in the sand and talked.  With the evening upon them they walked into town for some pizza and then enjoyed a campfire, more conversation and some marshmallow roasting.  In the morning after a breakfast of chocolate chip pancakes, they enjoyed a bit more beach time before heading back to campus.

The Bengsons, also known as the Ol’ Zombie Nationalists, played in the Milligan Center on Friday night.  This duo is “a Brooklyn/Vermont/Indiana based husband/wife vaudeville rock duo who perform in a variety of mediums. They demonstrate the possibility and urgent need for social change and have appeared in theaters across the country…They are rock musicians who perform both as the Bengsons and also as the electronic-infused Zombie Nationalists…They are folk musicians, and they are activists and teachers, who have taught students in NYC's public schools, worked with gang children in El Salvador and Cambodian immigrants in Massachusetts. Shaun & Abigail recently returned from a month of performing and teaching in South Africa.”  They spent time in music classes here at Thacher throughout the day on Friday.  You can learn more about them at: http://bengsons.com/Bengsons/Home.html

After the music performance, students headed out for the Sespe Open House, which featured fortune tellers, a henna tattoo artist, and chai tea.

The Veterinary Medicine class headed off campus for a field trip on Saturday afternoon with their teacher, Dr. Finch.

Saturday night saw what must be at least the 5th bi-annual Hades Dance.  This dance is entirely organized and put on by the senior class, and it has its origins in the first one, named Hades because of the location (under what we commonly call ”Olympus,” in the dining hall) and the type of music played (originally bad eighties music, inspiring the word “Haties”) as well as the theme (related to the underworld).  Though the music now features standard fare, the theme each time remains quirky and original.  This year’s theme, “Down the Rabbit Hole,” included a rabbit-hole like entrance through the back door of the dining hall and a screening on one wall of the original Disney cartoon version of Alice in Wonderland.

Two classes of students headed off campus on Sunday to enjoy the day together.  The freshmen traveled to Magic Mountain for the day, while the juniors headed to the beach in Ventura for some fun in the sun.
 
*****

@Assembly:  Week of 4/19

Mr. Fagan reminded the sophomores that they needed to be ready for duty beginning on Thursday, day one of The Ojai Tennis Tournament.  This year marked the 110th year of the tournament and the 10th year of Thacher sophomores ball burling, as they like to call it.  Other jobs included working at the media desk, the scorer’s table and helping with parking.

Co-captain Natalie Swift ’10 thanked Ms. Jones for driving and Ms. Grant and Mr. Robinson for their coaching, as the girls varsity lacrosse team headed to the Western States Tournament in San Francisco and came home with a 2nd place finish.  The team played Menlo and Palo Alto High School two times each.

Dr. Vyhnal lauded Bridget Park ’12, who finished 2nd in the Ventura County Science Fair in the high school microbiology division.  Bridget did this project completely independently from start to finish.  

Dr. Vyhnal went on to praise Tawni Stoop ’11 and Katharine Gifford ’10, who sat for the Chemistry Olympiad National Exam.  Ten thousand students sit in the first round, and 900 qualify for the next round.  Tawni and Katharine were two of them.

Sam Meyer thanked Ms. McMahon for all of her help with the Day of Silence, in which over 200 faculty, staff and students participated.

School Chair Max Hoffman ’10 invited anyone interested to come to the Community Council meeting to discuss whether there should be co-School Chairs, both a boys and a girl each year.

Mr. Pidduck reminded students that sign ups would be help on Thursday, April 24th for Spring Extra Day Trips.

Mr. Mazzola urged people to be sure they pick up all of their belongings from the gym.

Brianna Bohnett gave the community some food for thought as she revealed that every person uses 2-4 sheets of paper per day; that the plastic used in plastic bags that end up in the ocean poisons sea creatures; that a leaky faucet can waste up to 100 gallons of water in one day.  She asked that all of us take a moment to ponder these things on Earth Day.  To mark the day, Formal Dinner would be candlelit and entirely organic.

Mr. Schryver announced the top ten freshman and over all riders.  #10 was Spencer Hanley ’13; 9 J-J Ntshaykolo ‘13; 8 Shravan Rajasekaran ‘13; 7 Cayce Cover ‘11; 6 Miles Fossett ‘12; 5 Marco Hernandez ‘11; 4 Chris Colson ‘11; 3 Will Rutter ‘11; 2 Wohona Delgadillo ‘10; and #1 for the week was Laura Benard ‘10.  The Green team remained in 3rd place while Blue inched past Orange to nab first by a mere three hundred points.

Mr. Hooper announced that he hoped the community was excited about Senior Exhibitions, set to kick off on Thursday.  He reminded all students in the 7 PM slot to leave formal dinner early.

The sophomore girls invited the community to their Open House, set for 8:45 PM on Saturday night.

Around Campus:


Throughout the week the campus was abuzz with Senior Exhibition preparation, as students and faculty seemed to occupy every inch of academic space in the evenings, practicing and observing upcoming presentations.  The program officially launched on Thursday with presentations on Folk Music, Music and the Mind, The Poetry of Catullus, Fast Food and America and Falconry and a smorgasbord of topics followed on Friday and Saturday for faculty, staff, students and parents to sample.  

The Hill (sophomore girls and their prefects) hosted their Open House on Saturday night. Activities were to include lawn games, fondue, masseuses and roasting marshmallows around their firepit.  Before the Open House, students played a massive all-school game of capture the flag.  They drew a line with chalk straight down the middle of campus, and hunted for the other team’s “flag”—a bright glow stick.
 
*****
 
@Assembly: Week of 4/12/10

Mr. Klausler announced that 139 Thacher students will be taking AP exams this May, with sign-ups would taking place in the Dining Hall on Monday and Tuesday night at 9:30 PM.

Steffi Star ‘11 announced that Amnesty International would be selling donuts in the Commons on Thursday night to raise money for a Tibetan Orphanage that Lili Pike ’11 is working with while away in China on School Year Abroad.

Marco Hernandez ’11, Miles Fossett ’11, Laura Benard ’10, Lilly Haggard ’12, Cody Renfrew ’13 and Shravan Rajasekaran ’13 traveled to Orme School in Arizona to compete in a gymkhana with Verde Valley School, Fountain Valley School and Orme.  Thacher won the event due to the hard work of the entire team.  Mr. Schryver thanked Fred Coleman, who helped drive the team.

Michael Stenovec ’10 invited anyone interested to join in on the Jam Society to play some music.

Mr. Pidduck asked that anyone interested in captaining an EDT come and see him after assembly.  He also noted that right now excellent conditions for camping exist all over the nearby area.  Locations as close as The Pines and just over the ridges make for great overnight trips.

Morgan Krey ’10 reminded those interested to order a gymkhana shirt.

Sam Meyer ’10, Avery Hellman ’11, and Albert Perez ’10 members of Thacher’s student group The Coalition, introduced the Day of Silence, scheduled nationwide for Friday, April 16. On National Day of Silence hundreds of thousands of students nationwide take a vow of silence to bring attention to the anti-LGBT name-calling, bullying and harassment in their schools.  Over the course of the week, about 200 members of the Thacher community took the vow, and many more wore red as a sign of solidarity with the movement.

Mary Ellen Funke ’11 and Lauren Zakarian-Cogswell ’10 briefly reported on Fareed Zakaria’s talk at UCSB that students attended through the Current Events Club.  They summarized his message as “optimistic,” citing his feeling that the country is about to bounce back strongly from the recession.  They also thanked Mr. Elmore and Mr. Carney, who took the group.

Mr. Sawyer said that he still had two tickets for the Dodgers vs. Giants baseball game in Los Angeles on Sunday.

Kyle Dietrich ’10 invited the community to come and see the Thacher-Cate baseball game, as it is the last time the seniors would be playing Cate at home.

Mr. Mulligan introduced Rick Bisaccia, who works for the Ojai Land Conservancy.  Mr. Bisaccia, who grew up on the Thacher campus as a fac-brat (his dad taught here), worked recently on the 80 Conservancy acres near the gymkhana field..  He invited all those interested in helping with trail maintenance to meet him briefly after assembly.

Mr. Schryver announced the overall gymkhana team scores, and going into Wednesday’s gymkhana, Orange was on top, while Blue was second, and Green third.

Mr. Mulligan announced that students interested in working on the McCloskey ranch in Hawaii this summer should respond to the job posting he sent out via email.  Mr. McCloskey is a former Thacher parent.

The entire School sang happy birthday to Jack Huyler on Friday, to help him celebrate his ninetieth birthday.  Mr. Huyler announced, “It never occurred to me that I’d live to be ninety. But now that I am, I want you to know that I’m not interested in existence, I’m interested in LIFE.”  After assembly, everyone got to enjoy cake with him as well, and the Mulligans hosted his birthday party at their home on Friday night.

Max Hoffman ’10 asked to meet with those interested in the Sir Winston Debating Society head position to talk to him after assembly.

Ms. Hooper and Nick Hwang announced that all entrants to Friday night’s Iron Chef competition needed to send team entries by noon.

The Casa Girls challenged the Middle School girls to a game of dodgeball.

Ms. Kent announced that on Monday, 33 college deans and directors of admission would be on campus for Case Studies Day, which Thacher co-hosts with Cate School.

Around Campus:

Several students, including Brianna Bohnett ’10 and Sarae Snyder ’10, traveled to Cate with Dr. Vyhnal to attend a Solar Panel Seminar there.

The Lineage Dance Company from Pasadena performed on Saturday night in the Milligan Center.  The troupe also worked with the Thacher dancers over the course of the day, and the Thacher dancers performed a piece alongside the dance company.  Teresa Findley ’10 and Sam Meyer ’10 sang for one piece, as well, and Max Hoffman and Jackson Berler had roles as actors.

 On Friday night, about 15 teams and 8 judges gathered on the Pergola for the Iron Chef competition.  Using camp stoves and camping pots and pans, teams made entrees that run the gamut, from grilled flank steak sandwiches with arugula and blue cheese; stir fry with peanut sauce, snap peas, and tofu; homemade superica; mushroom risotto; and the ultimate winner, homemade flautas and tomatillo sauce, cooked by Douglas and Patrick Coughran.
 
*****
 
@Assembly: Week of 4/5/10
 
Mr. Hooper launched the week with a TOAD talk that focused on the idea of how to continue to create a school culture that avoids the “us vs. them” mentality.
 
Sword Club presidents Will Rutter ’11 and Scott Lee ’11 performed a humorous skit, featuring a horse/narrator (Joe Walton ’13) and two damsels in distress (Raquel Reisinger ’11 and Maggie Miller ’11).  After saving the said damsels, Will announced that there would be a Master Class in swordsmanship coming up, as his instructor from San Francisco is traveling to Thacher to do a workshop with interested students.
 
Composting Co-Head Alex Macmillan presented Mr. Mulligan a small cup of the first batch of “functional soil” from the composting program.
 
Mr. Meyer introduced Captain Charles Moore, who discovered the “island of floating trash” in the Pacific Ocean.  Mr. Moore spoke briefly, previewing his talk for Monday night after formal, which looked at “Humanity’s Plastic Footprint.”
 
Derek Gulick-Stutz ’12 and Josh Cho ’12 announced that the Microfinance Club would be selling Taco Bell in the Commons during 9:30-10 to raise money for more microloans.
 
Mr. Pidduck thanked the group of senior boys who worked enthusiastically and in the best spirit of the Outdoor Program to make his ski to climb to surf trip such a success. 
 
Ms. Jones announced that there would be a bowling and roller skating trip on Friday night.
 
Iona Hughan ’10, Lauren Zakarian-Cogswell ’10 and Charlie Sun ’10 announced that the Current Events Club would be going to UCSB next week to hear Fareed Zakaria, foreign policy expert and editor of Newsweek International.
 
Mr. Mulligan welcomed all newly admitted students and their families who were visiting the school.
 
Sarah Boneysteele ’10 and Laura Ammons ’10 asked that anyone interested in roles for the Spring Sing contact them, pointing out that there were many non-singing and non-dancing roles as well.
 
Mr. Pidduck asked that any students interested in the pilot Tall Ship Extra Day Trip contact him, as he needs to get particular permits well in advance of the trip.
 
The girls jv lacrosse team noted that Wednesday was National Dress Like A Lax Bro Day and also invited the community to come and watch their game against Cate on Saturday.
 
Nick Kohli ’10 gave a Current Event announcement for Public Speaking class on the United States’ drone bombings in Pakistan.
 
Mr. Coleman announced that Cole Ryder ’10 had been selected by the soccer coaches of the Southern Section CIF to the 3rd team All-CIF for boys soccer, while Alex Macmillan ’10 was named to the 2nd team.
 
Mr. McMahon asked for any students interested in a sea kayaking spring camping trip to contact him.
 
Mr. Schryver announced the Gymkhana Top Ten freshman and overall riders.  Spencer Hanley ’13 maintained the top spot for the freshman, while Wohona Delgadillo ’10 continued as the #1 overall rider.
 
Mr. Mulligan presented the Green Cup to Casa Dormitory for having the largest reduction in energy usage over the course of the three weeks that the competition went on in February.
 
Michael Stenovec ‘10 announced that the deadline for articles to The Notes had been extended to Sunday.
 
Ms. Mazzola and Mr. Carney announced that there were tickets available to hear Greg Mortenson, author of Three Cups of Tea, in Santa Barbara in May.
 
Around Campus:
 
On Monday night, Captain Charles Moore spoke to the school community after formal dinner about the amount of plastic in the ocean.  He focused not only on what we can see, but on all of the disintegrated smaller particles that float below the ocean’s surfaces as well.  He concluded by urging all of us to add a fourth “R” to our repertoire: REFUSE, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.
 
The junior class left formal dinner early on Tuesday and spent time speaking to different faculty members at a Leadership Job Fair in the Study Hall to learn about the different responsibilities involved in positions ranging from Yearbook Editor to Indoor Committee to Prefect to Library Prefect.
 
On Thursday night, Ojai’s own Rain Perry performed after Formal Dinner in the PAC to a large crowd.  She sang songs from her recently released album Cinder Block Bookshelves, as well as songs from the album she is currently working on.
 
Friday night’s theme was activity, as some students traveled to Oxnard to bowl or rollerskate, while others stayed on campus and played whiffleball on the gym or four square on the Pergola.
 
Several brave souls even took their activity to the hills, as Ms. Jones, Margot Hughan ’12, Katherine Krey ’12, Cassie Disner ’12 and Anouk Ackerman ’12 hiked up to The Pines for a peaceful night away.  After a good night’s sleep and a delicious breakfast, the crew returned to campus Saturday morning.
 
The Indoor Committee sponsored a barbecue on the Upper School lawn on Saturday night, complete with badminton, volleyball and horseshoes.  Later, students watched Meet the Parents on the lawn or headed to the Mulligans’ Open House.
 
Mr. Carney took several students on a camping trip to Carpinteria State Beach on Saturday night. The group was largely comprised of students from his Civil Wars class, as well as a few willing additions.  Students included Lauren Joseph ’10, Joel Reimer ’10, Alex Macmillan ’10, Emily Combs ’10, Nick Kohli ’10 and Iona Hughan ’10. 
 
*****
 
@Assembly: Week of 3/29/10

Mr. McGowan gave his TOAD talk on the changing opportunities for women in the world, his thinking prompted a year ago when he and Susannah (and Javi) welcomed Rory into their family.

Ms. Hooper thanked all of the people who helped make Battle of the Bands such a success, including Bon Appetit, the judges (including Max Hoffman), the emcees Sam Meyer and Natalie Swift, and most importantly the Tech Crew, including Sienna Courter ’11, Sarina Patel ’10, Sophie Subira ’10, Trevor Mulchay ’11, Alice Hyde ’12, Leah Sticklemeier ’11, Bryana Lloyd ’11 and Justin Myles ’13 who made the whole evening work; they are led by their fearless leader, Ms. Kendrick.

The Casa Prefects sang a song based on the Black Eyed Peas’ number “Where is the Love,” which they performed as a result of Casa dormitory’s winning the Green Cup Challenge for the largest reduction in energy usage over a three week period.  Faculty member Mr. Carney, sitting high up in the amphitheatre despite having promised to perform as well, gave the girls the final words of the song, “Where’s Mr. Carney?”

Ms. Morales Kent, Ms. Hooper, Ms. Meyer and Mr. Klausler all performed a celebratory dance because all of the seniors have all been accepted to college.  All of the seniors move to the bottom seats at assembly, symbolizing that they will be freshman again, and the whole class joined the College Counseling office after assembly for Martinelli’s and cookies.

Shelby Luce ’13 and Liam Driscoll ’13 invitedway anyoneway interestedway inway oiningjay emthay orfay away ormalfay innerday iscussionday inway igpay atinlay otay oinjay izMay ulliganMay’s abletay onway undaySay ightnay.

A representative from Adventures Cross-Country introduced himself and offered to speak with any interested students at lunch.

Joe Bell ’12 invited any and all to join him for clean up at Ojai Creek in Libbey Park on Saturday morning.

Mr. Schryver announced the Top Ten freshman and overall riders of the Gymkhana season.  For the freshman, Spencer Hanley ’13, held the top spot, while Wohona Delgadillo ’10, was the top rider in the School.  The Green Team held the number one team position, with Orange behind by just four points.

Mr. Mulligan gave kudos to Sarae Snyder ’10, Laura Ammons ’10 and Sydney Bowie ’10 for their fine work in the Independent Projects in dance, choreography, and videography over the winter term.  The girls gave their final performance after formal dinner on Tuesday evening.

Mr. McMahon asked that anyone interested in being a part of the microfinance club join in on their next meeting after formal dinner.  The group met via Skype with Ann Proctor, who works with women in Afghanistan, to discuss projects to fund.

Laura Ammons ’10 invited anyone interested to come to Hip Hop class at 6:15 PM on Wednesday night in the Dance Studio.

Mr. Perry announced the track captains for 2010: Brianna Bohnett ’10, Remy Fisher ’10, Lauren Joseph ’10 and Austin Krause ’10.

A big thank you was given to Steffi Star ’11 and the other students who put together the Passover Seder.

The Mulligans invited all students to settle around their fire pit at Open House on Saturday night, starting at 8 PM.

Mr. Mulligan introduced Dennis Shives to the school community, calling him “the Moses of the Thacher trails.”  Mr. Shives regularly parks his white VW bus at the end of the gymkhana road and embarks barefoot with a large walking stick on a saunter on the trails.  He remarked the Assembly, “I’m barefoot and quiet.”  Mr. Shives is an artist and naturalist, and at least once a year, he creates a phenomenal sand sculpture at Monica Ros School.

Mr. Schryver announced that there would be a trailhorse and cattle competition on Saturday out at the Gymkhana Field.

The Middle School girls reminded the community that all were welcome at their Open House on Friday night.

Wohona Delgadillo ’10, Brandon Green ’11 and Will Rutter ’11 announced the launch of the Language Creation Club.

Mr. Haggard invited everyone to the Easter Sunrise service at the Outdoor Chapel at 7:30 AM on Sunday morning.

The Indoor Heads welcomed everyone out to the bonfire, planned for Saturday night at the Gymkhana Field.
 
*****
 
@Assembly: Week of 3/22/10

TOAD Mr. Harris welcomed everyone back and gave a TOAD talk on the “much maligned particle” known as the nutrino.  

Ms. Hooper announced the 5th annual Battle of the Bands, slated for Saturday night, and asked that anyone planning on performing send her an email with the name of their act.

Mr. Haggard said that he needs all kinds of help with this year’s Spring Sing, from choreography to singers to tech help to directors.  If students want to participate, they should contact him.

Steffi Star ’11 invited all wanted to come to or help prepare the Passover Seder to contact her.

Mr. Haggard reminded everyone of the upcoming Easter Sunrise Service, where the Chamber Choir and the Ensemble would be performing.  He also said that he had room for about five students to attend a scoring session in Los Angeles, courtesy of James Newton Howard CdeP 1969.

Ms. Vickery announced that there would be a hip-hop class, open to anyone interested, in the Dance Studio on Wednesday night.

Mr. Schryver reminded the freshmen of their impending ride home from pasture, slated for Wednesday afternoon.

Mr. Mazzola revealed that there is a new spin bike in the Fitness Center and two treadmills on their way.

Environmental Action Committee members Brianna Bohnett’ 10 and Sarae Snyder ’10 announced that anyone interested in grafting avocado trees could join in on Saturday morning.

Ms. Mahoney announced that the IEA Zone 10 Finals would commence on Saturday morning out at the Gymkhana Field.  This is the show that decides who goes to Nationals in Georgia.  Ten Thacher riders competed in the event.

Mr. Schryver announced that there would be a Cowboy Race (based on the Extreme Cowboy Race model) on the gymkhana field on Saturday morning during which riders could earn individual points for their team.

Mr. Mulligan thanked members of the Admissions Office for their work over the winter admitting students and reminded everyone that Second Visits would begin on Sunday night for newly admitted students.

Jina Yun ‘11 invited anyone interested to attend her independent piano recital in the Choral Room after formal dinner on Sunday night.

Mr. Manson named Chris Dienst ’11, Hampton King ’10 and Colin McMahon ’11 as the jv boys lacrosse tri-captains for 2010.

John Cowles ’11 and Cory Dolphin ‘11announced an upcoming opportunity to hear Charles Moore speak at Thacher.  Mr. Moore discovered the swirling patch of garbage in the Pacific Ocean that is bigger than the state of Texas and now speaks out about it throughout the United States.

Lauren Stephanian ’11, who organized a student photo contest in the fall, revealed the winners.  In third place was Jo Min ’11.  Chris Yih ’12 finished second, while Jesse Garrett ’11 nabbed first place honors.

Lisea Lark ’12 updated the community on energy consumption.  Casa is leading at 64.  While the Green Cup Challenge has ended, Lisea revealed that there will be some sort of prize for the dorm that finishes the year with the lowest number.

Community Service co-heads Trudy Park ’10 and Nick Orr ’10 announced some upcoming opportunities to volunteer in the Ojai Community.  Workers are needed at the OVCNS Family Fun Day, volunteers are needed for a fun booth at YouthFest, and Special Olympics, which is in full swing every Saturday, needs volunteers as well.

Mr. Jacobsen gave a wrap up of the winter Teamsters, declaring them “Undefeated in both the fall and winter seasons.”  Anton Doty ’12 was Most Amusing, while Bridget Park ’12 was named Most Indulgent.  Henry Field ’12 was Most Philosophical.   He also named the students who have earend their “A Teamster” rating.  These students know how to harness the horses and “run the whole show”: Peyton Chelsey ’11, Paige Gribb’ 10, Leeah Sticklemeiar ’11 and Sophie Subira ’10.

Around Campus:

On Friday night, students packed the Study Hall for a “Jersey Shore” themed dance.  Jackson Howard ’12 made his djaying debut, hair poofs and muscle shirts abounded, and Jersey Mike’s subs gift card were raffled off.

Cars jammed the parking lot and the PAC was filled to the brim on Saturday with the 5th annual Condor League Battle of the Bands.  This year saw the largest number of schools participate, as OVS joined Thacher, Cate, Dunn and Oak Grove.  With fifteen acts amongst the five schools, it was a musical evening.  Rappers Jarred Murray Bruce and Andrew Oh won the event for the second year in a row with their flashy routine.  Haddon and Christian from Cate, performing their own original number, nabbed second place, and OVS’s female trio took third.  Add in the rousing performances from Oak Grove and several Thacher bands as well, and the Condor League’s musical talent was on full display.
 
*****
 
@Assembly: 2/15/10
 
Mr. Mulligan welcomed back Cam Spaulding CdeP 1992.  Cam joins our community every year as the spring season rolls around to coach boys varsity lacrosse and to teach an elective called “Perspectives in Nature.”  He will be living at the Courts with the senior boys. 
 
Fred Swaniker, co-founder of the African Leadership Academy, introduced himself and invited interested students and faculty members to chat with him at lunch about taking a junior semester, a gap year, or a sabbatical year at his school in Johannesburg.
 
Nick Kohli ’10 gave a brief announcement summarizing the current state of the economy.
 
Avery Hellman ’11 announced that she would be showing photographs from her semester in Vietnam in Room 14 after Formal Dinner.
 
Mr. Robinson gave kudos to the cast, crew and directors of Seussical, on the heels of its three-day run—each performance bravissimo/a!
 
Lisea Lark ’12 announced the current Green Cup Challenge standings.  Casa (freshman girls and their prefects) continued to lead the charge, while Upper School actually increased its usage.
 
Mr. Klausler announced that a representative from the Experiment in International Living would be available to talk to interested students in the dining hall during lunch.
 
Co-captain Emily Combs ’10 thanked everyone who came out to support the girls varsity basketball team in its first round playoff game against Bishop Diego.
 
Mr. Haggard asked if anyone was interested in joining him to watch a Santa Barbara symphony orchestra rehearsal on Saturday.
 
Mr. Mulligan gave the end-of-season wrap up for jv boys soccer.  Charlie Sun ’10 was the team’s Most Valuable Player while Carson Land ’11 earned Most Inspirational honors.  McCoy Becker was named the Most Enthusiastic, and Most Improved went to the whole team.
 
Around Campus:
 
The February lull was pushed aside this week for the first-ever Spirit Week at Thacher.  Monday say students sporting pajamas and wacky socks, while Tuesday brought a general showing of orange and green pride with Thacher Day.  Only the few and the proud dressed for non-human day (Brianna Bohnett’s wings got caught as she stood to make an assembly announcement; Mr. Hooper was the Tooth Fairy, and Ms. Sawyer-Mulligan the Pink Moment).  More rallied for Backwards Day, though the spaghetti at breakfast switch (which meant pancakes and scrambled eggs for dinner) threw a few for a loop.  The climactic moment came on Friday, with Class Color day.  There was no question that the juniors outshone everybody, as they fully embraced purple, sporting hairspray, face paint, and two huge purple flags, which they waved at assembly.
 
Many Thacher students rose bright and early on Saturday morning and headed out into the community for various service options.  On the urging of stalwart Joe Bell ’12, fifteen students went to Libby Park in Ojai to continue restoring Ojai Creek to a more natural state.  They pulled the invasive vinca vine and planted willow trees, as well as a plant called mulefat and acorn seeds.  Participants included Alex Macmillan ’10, Jackson Berler ’10, Laurel Poolman ’10, Charlie Evans ’12, Jesse Gates ’12, Alec Grushkin ’11, Noelani Nasser ’11, Erin Chisholm ’11, Mac Combs ’12, Katie Taylor ’11, Walker Coyningham ’12, Avery Hellman ’11, Giovanna Grigsby-Rocca ’12, Derek Gulick-Stutz ’12 and Joe Bell ’12.  Faculty members Kara Hooper, John Bueti and Kurt Meyer also worked with the students.
 
While some were digging in the dirt, others were out coaching at the Special Olympics in Ventura.  Students paired up with athletes and encouraged them to work to the best of their abilities.  Currently, the athletes are working on running, but eventually they will work on field events as well. Volunteers were Paule Voevodsky ’12, Jesse Garrett ’11, Nick Orr ’10, Valorie Denton-Moore ’11 and Natalie Swift ’10.
 
Five senior dancers and their teacher Gallia Vickery headed to the Pasadena Dance Festival over the weekend to perform.  The group included Laura Ammons ’10, Jane Fisher ’10, Sarae Snyder ’10, Sydney Bowie ‘10 and Taryn Van Vliet ‘10.
 
Students enjoyed a dance in the Commons and the delicious fare and good company of the Mulligans at their weekly Open House on Saturday night. (Fondue February continued apace. . .)
 
Through the generosity of the Berenson Fund, which supports cultural events for Thacher students, a group of ten students and two faculty members headed to the Pantages Theatre on Sunday to see the musical The Color Purple.
 
Other students stuck to good old-fashioned hard work on Sunday.  Alex Macmillan ’10, Giovanna Grigsby-Rocca ’12, Brianna Bohnett ’10, Sebastian Schell ’10, Avery Hellman ’11, Margot Hughan ’12 and Paige Bowie ‘12 raked leaves to gather a huge batch to serve as the “dry matter” for the Thacher composting system.  The group then worked on moving compost from the main bin to bins two and three and admired the first soil of the year.

*****

@Assembly: Week of 2/8/10

Mr. Meyer celebrated the Math Club’s recent victory at Westmont College and credited the leadership of Math Club president Trudy Park ’10 with an increase in membership and participation.

Dr. Vyhnal invited anyone interested to accompany him on a geo-caching camping trip to Patton’s Cabin over the weekend.

Mr. Mulligan lauded the efforts of the senior boys who proposed a move to The Courts for the second half of the school year.  He talked about how their proposal prompted a discussion of prefect and non-prefect leadership at Thacher, and he asked all of the community to continue to think about this issue and to discuss it.  He remarked that the fundamental issue is, “Are we taking the fullest advantage of seniors in regards to the role of leadership?”

Shane Griffee ’12 thanked Ms. Kasimirowski and Julian Kasimirowski ‘12 for hosting the sophomores for the Super Bowl.

Mr. McMahon reminded everyone that there would be a Microfinance Club meeting after formal dinner.  The Microfinance Club is a new organization, born out of Kimmie Weeks’s visit earlier this month.

Mr. Schryver congratulated Sienna Courter ‘11 for earning her Advance Rider status.

Mr. Meyer and Lisea Lark reported on dorm energy use for Green Cup Challenge.  At the end of the week, Sespe had only risen in usage; Casa was leading the dorm for largest decline in usage.

Mr. Fagan asked anyone interested to contact him about camping in Mammoth over the weekend, while Ms. Hooper invited anyone interested to join her and the Hooper boys for an overnight in nearby Matilija Canyon.

Lydia Keating ’13, Brittany Holden ’13, Nu Xiong ’13, Hutton Becker ’13 and Jasmynn Roman ’13, sang the song that Thacher athletes traditionally sang during the 1970s and 80s before playing Cate, as they faced the Rams in an away game on Wednesday night.

Natalie Swift ’10, Sarra Wynn ’10, Kelly Schultz ’10, Kelly Timmes ’10 and Claire Frykman ’10, invited anyone interested to come and support the girls varsity soccer team in their final regular season game against Laguna Blanca.

Molly Perry announced that the Special Olympics track season in Ventura was getting under way; anyone interested in helping on Saturdays should contact her.

Kylie Manson CdeP 2005 explained that she was back on campus representing the program Where There Be Dragons, and she would be available to talk with interested students in the dining hall during lunch.

Scott Lee ’11 got the whole Assembly going with a rendition of “You’re Just Too Good to be True,” and other members of the club went on to say that the Microfinance Club would be selling serenades for Valentine’s Day.  

Iona Hughan ’10 went on to say that that Therapeutic Riding of Thacher (TROT) would meet on Wednesday and needed plenty of riders, as all four participants would be riding.

Mr. Mulligan congratulated National Merit Finalists Paige Gribb ’10, Lauren Rosenfeld ’10, Laura Benard ’10, Jane Fisher ’10, Charlie Sun ’10, Kelly Timmes ’10 and Morgan Krey ’10.

Mr. Jacobsen said thank you and goodbye to Anacapa Writer-in-Residence Phil Condon and his wife, Celeste, who’d joined the community for two weeks.

Mr. Mazzola offered to drive any TOAD Nation Fans to Cate to see the girls basketball game that would determine the Condor League Championship.

Will Waste ’10, announced that the trap range would be open for shooting this weekend.

Around Campus:


Wednesday’s Assembly brought the exciting and unexpected news of a holiday and a ski trip to Mt. Baldy.  Forty-two students boarded a bus at 6:15 AM and enjoyed a full day on the slopes, while many more happily slept in a bit, enjoyed a mid-week brunch, caught up on homework, went for a hike or run or trailride—basically put to good use the time freely given.

After a final performance of Seussical that thrilled a packed house, students headed to the Commons for World Food Night.  Several clubs on campus, including the Chinese Club, the Jewish Club, the UCT and the Food Appreciation Club served up potstickers, Matzo Ball soup, hummus, chocolate mousse, and crepes.

*****

@Assembly: Week of 2/1/10

Mr. Mieszczanski gave a brief history of Black History Month, which is February, on behalf of United Cultures of Thacher; various members of UCT will be giving short biographies of and quotations by historically influential and inspirational African Americans.

On behalf of the Indoor Committee, Katharine Gifford ‘10 thanked all faculty members who hosted students for Faculty Favorites Night.

Natalie Swift ’10 thanked Mr. Maxwell and Morgan Krey ’10 for helping with the Casa Open House.

Mr. Jacobsen introduced Phil Condon, professor of Environmental Studies and author (essays, fiction, poetry) at the University of Montana, to the Thacher community.  Mr. Condon is spending two weeks as an Anacapa Writer-in-Residence at Thacher.

Sarae Snyder ’10 and Brianna Bohnett ’10 introduced the Green Cup Challenge, a two week program in which boarding schools across the country try to cut their overall energy consumption by the largest percentage.

Mr. Schryver congratulated Wohona Delgadillo ’10 for earning her Advanced Rider status.

Julie Park ’10 announced a Valentine’s Fundraiser to earn money for Haiti relief.  Students and faculty can order roses for people within the community, and they will be delivered on Valentine’s Day.  

Ben Eastburn ’11 thanked all of the people who helped with installation of his orienteering course on the Thacher trails.

Ms. Vickery invited anyone interested to participate in a hip hop class in the dance studio on Wednesday evening.

Sarra Wynn ’10 and Nick Orr ’10 announced that there would be a jar on the town bus on Wednesday for any contributions to a pillow fund to purchase new ones for the Ojai homeless shelter.

Austin Krause ’10 and several other enthusiastic senior boys declared Friday, February 5, the 6th Annual Jean Cut-off Day.

Dressed in a fur-trimmed coat and sporting a lion’s nose over his own, Indoor Committee Head Nick Hwang ’10 revealed the theme for Friday’s dance—“Animal Kingdom.”

Ms. Sawyer-Mulligan invited everyone to stop by Open House on Friday night for a special February Fondue night—with Valentine’s Day card-making. (She’ll pay the postage for any cards made for parents, grandparents, or other kin!)

Around Campus:

On Friday night, students enjoyed a dance with an “Animal Kingdom” theme in the Commons.

On Saturday night the Indoor Committee launched the “Campus Crawl,” with events occurring simultaneously in three common rooms.  Lower School hosted a TV show marathon, Middle School hosted a dance, and The Hill hosted a night of Billiards, Ping Pong, and board games.

*****

@Assembly: Week of 1/25/10

Mr. Winters invited anyone interested to join in on a discussion after formal dinner in the Thacher Room to ponder the question, “Is America a Christian nation?”

Michael Stenovec, one of the members of Thacher’s Emergency Relief Fund (TERF), thanked the community for contributing to the bake sale to raise money for earthquake relief in Haiti.  The event raised over $1200.

Mr. Haggard announced that students interested in either a solo or group independent in music should talk to him.  He also reminded everyone that music lessons can start mid-term.

Ms. Kasimirowski asked that anyone interested could contribute gently worn shoes and she will collect them and donate them to Haiti earthquake victims.

Brianna Bohnett ’10 reminded everyone to grab a reusable bag from the box on the Thacher bus for trips to town.

Bill Murphy, from the National Disaster Search Dog Foundation spoke to the community about how to get involved with the organization through community service.  He encouraged anyone interested to pursue volunteering during the school year and the summer as well.  The National Disaster Search Dog Foundation, headquartered in Ojai, has sent teams to help in the aftermath of the Iran earthquake, 9/11, Hurricane Katrina and the Metrolink disaster.  Recently, the group’s six teams that traveled to Haiti were credited with ten rescues of still-living victims.

Mr. Schryver congratulated Chris Colson ’11 for earning the rank of Advanced Rider.

Mr. Elmore introduced the Green Cup Challenge.  This is a completely student-driven competition in which students at a variety of boarding schools around the country try to reduce campus energy and water consumption over a set period of time.  The meter-measuring will begin on Monday, February 1.  He encouraged our community to think about creating a greater reduction from last year to this year and presented an intra-dorm competition.

Mr. Mulligan encouraged interested students to watch President Obama’s State of the Union Address in the Commons or in faculty members’ homes.

Sarina Patel ’10 and Laurel Poolman ’10 invited anyone interested to come to a Literary Society meeting after formal dinner.

Teresa Findley ‘10 fulfilled a promise to Ms. Ortiz and performed a beautiful ballad in Spanish.

Ben Eastburn ’11 asked for volunteers to help him build an orienteering course out on the Thacher trails over the weekend.  

Max Hoffman announced that the next debate would be on gay marriage.  It will take place after formal dinner.

Mr. Mulligan reminded everyone that Kimmie Weeks, formerly a child soldier, would be speaking after formal dinner on Monday night in the Milligan Performing Arts Center.

Laura Benard ’10 was named a National Achievement Finalist.

Ebony Davis ’11 shared her “I AM” response from her Martin Luther King Day workshop with the community.  She is the first of several to share her work.

Lauren Zakarian-Cogswell ’10, Charlie Sun ’10 and Iona Hughan ’10, co-Heads of the Current Events club, spoke about the Democratic and Republican responses to President Obama’s State of the Union address. Charlie Sun added commentary, as well.

Laurel Poolman ’10, who heads the Spirituality Committee, invited anyone interested to come and speak with Father Nolan, a Catholic priest visiting from Boston, in the Thacher Room after formal dinner on Sunday night.

Ms. McMahon introduced Bill Deasey, a singer-songwriter, who performed for Assembly and then later in a on Friday night concert.

Around Campus:

On Friday night, the Math Club hosted Casino Night in the Study Hall.  With students Trudy Park ’10, Justin Myles ’13, Sarah Cresto ’12 as well as others running some of the tables and many in full formal dress (including Mr. Meyer, who sported a festive red bowtie), students and faculty tried their luck at poker, blackjack and roulette.  

The freshman girls and their senior prefects hosted Casa’s annual Open House on Saturday evening.  Featuring their trademark selection of doughnuts, a Friends marathon and a dance on the back lawn, the place was hopping until check in.

Thacher students headed to Upper Ojai and Besant Hill School on Saturday for the 2nd Condor League School Sustainability Conference.  Participants included Sarae Snyder ’10 and Brianna Bohnett.  Some students watched a film about the local watershed, while others talked about the upcoming Green Cup Challenge.  Mr. Meyer, Mr. Bueti and Ms. Manson represented the school as well.

While many Thacher students stayed warm on campus, others ventured into the backcountry for camping trips.  On Friday night, Amy Kim ’13, Lilli Kay ’13, Brittany Holden ’13, Viri Hernandez ’13, Anna Fleming ’13, Hutton Becker ’13 and Jasmynn Roman ‘13 spent the night at Patton’s cabin and then rode over the ridge back to Thacher with Mr. Curwen and Ms. Merlini.  Jasmynn noted that “Dinner is so much better while camping!” and Amy commented that running around and catching horses in the morning made for fun sport.  Of the trip, Lilli Kay writes, “It may have been cold, but the rice, beans, steak, sausage, and our extremely cheesy pasta warmed us up.  As for the snow, the cold was definitely worth it. We rode through huge heaps of snow, in which my and a few other horses often shoved their muzzles to get a drink of water.  As we rode up through the snow covered ridge, we actually thought a lot about how many people, including Thacher students and faculty, had been on that same trail—a squirrel, a mountain lion, a deer, a bobcat, a bear, a 1925 CdeP 1925 grad, etc. It was really fun.” Viri Hernandez added, “We went through the four seasons in seven hours. In the morning it felt like fall, and going up the ridge it felt like summer—it  was really hot.  Crossing the ridge however it felt like winter, and coming down the ridge we could hear the birds singing.”

Several upperclassmen headed to Patton’s Cabin [Thacher’s in-holding in the Los Padres National Forest] on Saturday for an evening of B horse camping training.  Chris Colson ’11, Cayce Cover ’12, Bea Taylor ’12, Olivia Stonehouse ’11 and Ashley Sauvain ’10 all worked on learning the basket hitch and the barrel hitch for packing.  The group also restocked Patton’s Cabin and used their imagination to create new foods (Indian Fry Bread, anyone?).  All deemed the fare “Amazingly delicious.”

*****

@Assembly: Week of 1/18/10

Brianna Bohnett ’10 and Sarae Snyder ’10 asked any interested students to contact them about attending the Sustainability Conference, hosted by Besant Hill.

Mr. Schryver publicly commended Will Rutter ’11 for earning his ranking of Advanced Rider.

Ms. McMahon reminded everyone that meetings with Richard Ryan would begin on Monday. Mr. Ryan visits our campus every year to discuss issues of substance abuse with each grade level.

Mr. Meyer announced the recent activities of the Math Club.  The Club finished 2nd of 6 teams at the Westmont College Math Contest.  Participants on the 9th and 10th grade team were Josh Cho ’13, Bridget Part ’12, Sarah Cresto ’12 and Derek Gulick-Stutz ’12.  The 11th and 12th grade team was made up of Morgan Krey ’10, Richy Yun ’11, Jina Yun ’11 and Andrew Kim ’11.  The group will be participating in the AMC math contest on February 9th as well.

In the midst of a rainy week, Mr. Mulligan reminded everyone to use caution while crossing the barranca.

Kyle Dietrich ’10 gave an announcement on behalf of the Current Events class on the recent Special Election on Massachusetts, in which Scott Brown won the Senator spot formerly held by Edward Kennedy.  In his talk, Kyle highlighted the potential for Senator Brown to affect the health care bill in Congress.

Sarah Boneysteele declared that the Improv Club would hold a meeting after formal dinner, “now that we’ve finished applying to colleges.”

Ms. Vickery invited anyone interested in coming to a hip-hop class in the dance studio on Wednesday evening.

Around Campus:

Former Thacher faculty member Elissa Eastvedt gave a talk after formal dinner and in classes on Friday about the research she has done on lightning for her Master’s degree.  The rare occurrence of a lightning show highlighted her talk on Thursday night, along with a controversial “ground cover” that fell during formal dinner.  As lightning lit up the sky and thunder rolled, what seemed to be hail fell from the sky.  Soon, enthusiastic students came running in from the Pergola with snowballs in hand, and brought them to Mr. Mulligan’s formal dinner table.  He quickly appointed a committee, made up of science teachers, Ms. Eastvedt and School Chair Max Hoffman to investigate the substance.  

Mr. Shagam chimed in with the historical significance of this event.  Back in 1948, snow fell and remained on the Pergola for over half an hour, resulting in a school holiday.  In 1969, snow fell again on the Pergola, but did not remain for a half an hour; hence, no holiday.  Soon, the appointed committee returned with their findings—apparently, the substance was grauple, which is a snowflake-coated in ice. This brought about much controversy, and no one seemed to check and see if the said grauple remained on the Pergola for thirty minutes or not.  All in all, it made for a wonderful introduction for Ms. Eastvedt’s talk, and a lively formal dinner.

On Friday, January 22nd, faculty members all over campus opened their homes and hosted small groups of students for an evening of dessert and a favorite movie.  Films shown ranged from current Oscar contender The Hurt Locker at the Hooper home to classics like One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (at the Curwens’ house) and The Blues Brothers (down the road a piece at the Merlini-Fagans’).  Some chose foreign films, like Vitus (a German film with subtitles, screened at the Omansiek-Grants’) and The Class (served up with homemade madeleines and mousse at Ms. Kasimirowski’s).  A lively group headed to Mr. Okin’s for a double feature of action movies while others watched The Bourne Ultimatum in the Carneys’ living room,  The Big Lebowski at the Jacobsens’ or A Few Good Men at the Meyers’.  Over 150 students participated in the evening.

On Saturday night, a hearty group of students headed to Oxnard for ice skating, while others chose to stay on campus and enjoy Open House at the Mulligans’—Danny’s Donuts (named for biodiesel innovator Danny Waldman CdeP 2008) taking center stage, gastronomically speaking.

Sunday brought a bus trip to Ventura.  Some students enjoyed the mall, while others people watched, skate boarded, headed to the ocean, or caught a movie in the downtown area.

*****

@Assembly: Week of 1/8 and 1/11/10

Mr. Mulligan welcomed back Mackenzie Boss ’11 and Avery Hellman ’11 from their semester at School Year Abroad in Vietnam.

Ms. Hooper thanked students for reading their emails and following directions regarding their transport back to school, as it was the smoothest travel day on record.

Mr. Harris asked to see all of his students participating in AP Mechanics after Assembly.

In response to the Texas Longhorn loss in the Rose Bowl vs. Alabama, James Bissett ’12, of the Lone Star State, performed a heartfelt version of “The Yellow Rose of Texas,” accompanied on guitar by classmate Henry Field (who lives at the other side of the country, in Maine).  After the performance, Mr. Hooper, who also hails from Texas, reported that he was “swollen with pride.” James received a standing ovation.

Albert Perez ’10 noted that participation in the TROT program was “a great way to reach out to the world,” and asked or anyone interested to come to the barns to work with four high school students from the Ojai who began this week in the program.

Mr. Schryver reminded all riders that they would start in new riding groups this week.

Sarina Patel ’10 and Laurel Poolman ’10 announced their presentation of their Independent Project in the Thacher Room after Formal Dinner.  Laurel and Sarina wrote a novel, weaving together two characters’ perspectives throughout the story.

Mr. Mulligan thanked the kitchen staff, the riding faculty and coaches who helped to make Alumni Weekend a success.

Mr. Winters, along with Joel Reimer ’10 and Grace Lowe ’11, invited anyone interested to the Christian Fellowship Meeting at the Winters’ home on Wednesday night.

Mac Combs ’12, Tim Kent ’12, Lucas Currie ’12 and Joe Bell ’12 reminded everyone that the senior boys’ final home basketball game against Cate would tip off in the gym at 4:30 on Wednesday.  They asked for a big showing of TOAD Nation support at the gym.

Mr. Mazzola gave the girls varsity volleyball season wrap up.  Natalie Swift ’10 and Iona Hughan ’10 earned Most Inspirational honors, while Emma Patterson ’12 garnered Most Improved Player.  Sarah Hancock ’12 was the team’s Most Valuable Player.

Sam Meyer announced that there would be a Spectrum meeting on Thursday.

Michael Stenovec ’10 and several other Thacher students announced the formation of the Thacher Emergency Relief Fund (TERF) to raise money for the crisis in Haiti.  The group is sponsoring a bake sale and encourages the whole community to bake something and drop it off at the Commons kitchen on Thursday, January 22nd.  The sale will take place from 11-1 on Friday, January 23rd.

Basketball co-captains Remy Fisher ’10 and Emily Combs ’10 invited everyone to come and watch their team’s games against Viewpoint on Friday and Dunn on Saturday in the gym.

The school wished the Thacher Equestrian Team luck as it headed off to Stanford for a horse show.

Around campus:


At Mr. Mulligan’s invitation, students listened to Alan Gompers, author of Maximum Security, in the Milligan Center on Friday night.  After the event, many headed up to Study Hall for several rousing rounds of trivia.  Questions covered pop culture, geography, history, sports, current events and music.  It was ultimately the team known as “Tim and Friends,” anchored by Tim Reed ’10, that took the pizza party prize.

On Saturday night students enjoyed Open House at the Mulligans’ and a dance at the Commons.

With the kickoff of MLK weekend came the annual Orrick Lecture.  This year, Enrique Morones, founder of the humanitarian organization Border Angels, spoke about immigration issues in the United States.

Canyon Cody, CdeP 2001, who recently returned from his year as a Fulbright Scholar, d-jayed a “World Dance Party,” sponsored by the United Cultures of Thacher.  Canyon played a lot of electronic music with samples from Dakaar, Singapore and India, to name a few.  The food included spring rolls, chips and salsa, and hummus and pita bread, which was a hit as well.

While many folks headed off campus on Saturday night for Cultural weekend trips, those who stuck around were treated to an informal concert from singer –songwriter Ellen Adams, CdeP 2005, in the PAC and some rousing karaoke in the Commons afterward.

*****

@Assembly: Week of 12/14/09

Mr. Shagam lauded the work of all of the debaters who took part in the debate regarding the surge in Afghanistan.  He deemed it the best debate (in terms of content) that he had seen or heard at Thacher.

Ms. McMahon reminded all travelers to wake up early and go to bed ready for traveling.

Ms. Vickery revealed that for the annual Holiday Concert Dance Ensemble would be performing an edgy holiday number. Called “The Jack Cracker Suite,” it combined Michael Jackson’s Thriller dance with the music of Tchaikovsky.

Mr. Hooper offered the football post-season wrap-up.  Will Waste ’10 and Morgan Krey ’10 earned 2nd Team All-CIF honors, while Kyle Dietrich ’10, Austin Krause ’10 and Cole Ryder ’10 were named to the 1st Team.  Ryder also set the school record for most yards in a season, while Krause set a record for most touchdowns in a career and a season as well as the all time rushing record.

Julie Park ’10 gave the first announcement from the new elective class Advanced Topics in Environmental Science.  The focused on the impact of tourism on the environment and offered several easy tips for people to follow when traveling abroad.

*****

@Assembly: Week of 12/7/09

Dr. Vyhnal gave a TOAD talk about life lessons one can glean through the game of ping-pong.  Primarily, he looked at the way the game can help one see when to take charge and when to be patient and deliberate and to develop the ability to deal with setbacks.

Sam Meyer ’10 announced that The Spectrum (also known as the Gay Straight Alliance) would hold a meeting after formal dinner.

Mr. Mazzola reminded the community that when we have rain, students should use the second hill by the fields for mudsliding, rather than the first—thereby avoiding dragging muck onto the new track.

Junior class president Jensen Hodge thanked Ms. Mulligan and the junior class for the brownie sale between 9:30-10.  The group raised money to support the school’s adopt-a-family.

Mr. Elmore announced the girls varsity soccer captains for 2009-2010: Natalie Swift ’10, Sarra Wynn ’10 and Kelly Schultz ’10.

Co-Community Service Head Nick Orr ’10 thanked the school for donations to our adopt-a-family.  Ms. Perry added that Ms. Mulligan would be taking students shopping for the family’s gifts.  Co-Community Service Head Trudy Park added that the Adopt-A-Family efforts of the whole community raised over $500 for the family.

Ms. Grant announced the jv girls soccer captains for 2009-2010: Sarina Patel ’10, Teresa Findley ’10 and Grave Lowe ’11.

Mr. Coleman announced the boys varsity soccer captains for 2009-2010: Cole Ryder ’10, Alex Macmillan ’10 and Kyle Dietrich ’10.

On behalf of the Indoor Committee, Kyle Dietrich ’10 invited students to the upcoming Cate-Thacher dance at Cate.

Laura Benard ’10 announced a Veterinary Medicine Club case study on strangles, which has recently affected a number of Thacher Horses.  Dr. Finch will lead the discussion.

Mr. Mazzola announced the jv girls basketball captains: Trudy Park ’10 and Sophie Subira ’10.

Mr. Meyer recognized the students who, for the third Saturday, helped with the ongoing efforts to prune and care for the avocado orchard.  He thanked the Mansons as well for their help.

The Debate Society invited anyone interested to come after formal dinner to watch the debate regarding the troop surge in Afghanistan.

Around Campus:

About fifty students boarded a bus and headed to Cate on Saturday night for the Cate-Thacher Dance.  Everyone who attended reported that the live band was fantastic as was the camaraderie.

Many students chose to stay on campus to enjoy the Holiday Open House at the Mulligans’ home.  With gingerbread houses to construct, ornaments to make, and cookies to decorate (and eat!), even the most ambitious elf might have had trouble doing it all in one evening.

A bus headed to Ventura on Sunday, and students climbed aboard to get a jump on their holiday shopping, catch a movie, or simply people watch.

*****

@Assembly: Week of 11/30

Mr. Schryver welcomed everyone back and reminded the freshmen that they would be riding back from pasture on Wednesday, December 2.

Albert Perez ’10 asked for many folks to join in for Therapeutic Riding of Thacher (TROT) on Wednesday.

Sean Ongley ’10 invited all Day Students to come to the Day Student dinner in the Thacher Room during formal dinner on Tuesday night.

Austin Krause ‘10 announced the upcoming Holiday Dance and asked anyone interested in helping to come to the Commons after formal dinner with scissors and paper to make snowflakes to decorate the Commons for the big event.

The State Championship 4th place Boys Cross-country Team presented Mr. Mulligan with their plaque for runner-up at the CIF-Southern Section finals, which preceded the competition in Fresno.

Mr. Perry shared the news that Remy Fisher ’10 and Emily Combs ’10 will be co-captains of the Girls Varsity Basketball team this season.

Mr. Maxwell revealed—to much applause—that Thursday night would be Chefs’ Night. This event occurs once a year when all nearby Bon Appetit chefs converge at Thacher to man a table and present a superb dish for the community.  This year’s fare included Greek flatbreads, tacos al pastor and curry noodle boxes. [A huge hit, as always!]

Current Events head Iona Hughan ’10 encouraged the community to review President Obama’s speech at West Point regarding Afghanistan by going online to read quotations and gather facts, as well as to read responses to it.

Mr. Jacobsen announced that he will lead the Thacher trip to Kenya next summer and invited anyone interested to contact him.

TJ Kim ‘13 earned freshman class president honors.

Michael Stenovec ’10 announced that the Music Guild would play on the Pergola during dinner in Saturday night.

Community Service Club heads Nick Orr’ 10 and Trudy Park ’10 described this year’s family that Thacher has adopted for the holiday season.  There is a single mother and six children, including 4 boys and 2 girls.  Gifts, food, and monetary donations are welcome.

Around campus:

While many were still at home enjoying the final night of their Thanksgiving Break on November 28th, the Boys Varsity Football team had already returned to campus on the 27th in order to prepare for their CIF semi-final football game against Santa Clarita Christian School.  The team traveled to Canyon High School to play under the lights on Saturday night, and a huge crowd of Thacher supporters, from past and present parents to alumni, faculty, and current students, turned out to support them.  

The team played a hard fought game, and despite tying it up early, 6-6, they trailed 28-14 at halftime and ultimately lost 62-22.  Coach Jeff Hooper said of the game, “We didn't like the outcome, but we were very proud of our players and the way they competed and dealt with adversity. On a difficult night, I honestly felt like we ended the game tighter and more unified as a team than we started it, which is a tough thing to do in that kind of situation. All of this, as well as our more tangible successes this season, were due to the outstanding leadership and character of our sixteen seniors, to whom I feel a great debt for what they've contributed to this program. It saddens me that I won't have the privilege to coach them again, as they were a wonderful group.  This year's seniors were: Sebastian Schell, Will Waste, Morgan Krey, Tom Kim, Kyle Dietrich, Austin Krause, Emmanuel Camarillo, Cole Ryder, Brandon Tate, Evan Praetorius, Mark Whitley, Nick Hwang, Trent Holden, Sean Ongley, Stephen Yih, and Casey Wyman. They'll all be missed.”

On Monday night immediately after formal dinner, the community gathered in the Milligan Center for a presentation by renowned climber and filmmaker David Braesheers.  He spoke at length about his current work studying and photographing glaciers and comparing them with photographs from expeditions to the same regions one hundred years ago.  Mr. Braesheers has currently completed work in the Everest and Karakoram regions.  This past summer, Thacher student Sebastian Schell ’10 traveled with Mr. Braesheers to the Karakoram Region to assist him in his work.

Underclassmen picked up their upperclass dates on Friday night for the holiday dance in the Commons.  With mistletoe gracing the doorway and a feast of food prepared and provided by Thacher parent Mary Krause, the evening was a hit for all.

Filmmaker Nick Wagonner screened his latest backcountry film Signatures on Saturday night in the Milligan Center. Shot in HD in Hokkaido, Japan, Signatures is 100% human powered riding in all snow-sliding styles: board, no board, ski, and drop-knee.

After the film, students spent time at the Mulligans’ Open House and also headed to study hall for the first ever Mr. and Mrs. Thacher Pageant.  Contestants included Josh Cho ’13, Shelby Luce ’13, Chance Rodriguez ’12 and Sarah Boneysteele ’10.  Categories of competition included Thacher trivia (Which Thacher faculty member was slapped by a bear on an EDT? Answer: Kurt Meyer); special talent (Who knew that Chance Rodriguez was an ace when it comes to catching gummy bears out of the air?); and fashion.  The caveat was that the outfit could be made from anything but clothing—Josh Cho’s festive Christmas light/tinsel combo wowed the crowd.  At the end of the evening Josh Cho and Sarah Boneysteele walked away with the crowns, and a good time was had by all.

*****

@Assembly: Week of 11/16

Mr. Robinson reminded all sophomores that they needed to attend an informational meeting about Maine Cost Semester after formal dinner.  He also encouraged interested students to meet with the School Year Abroad representative who would be on campus later in the week as well.

Mr. Fagan gave the season wrap up for Girls Varsity Tennis.  Most Inspirational Players were Lauren Rosenfeld ’10 and Mouna Lawrence ’10, while Zoey Poll ’12 captured Most Improved Player honors.  Lauren Stephanian ’10 was named the team’s Most Valuable Player.  Jo Min ’11 and Mouna Lawrence ’11 will serve as co-captains next season.

Ms. Vickery summed up the “season” of fall dance with several awards. Valorie Denton-Moore ’11 was Best Jumper while Jane Fisher was the Best Turner.  Most Improved Dancers with Experience were Francesca Fataar ’11, Sam Meyer ’10 and Leeah Stickelmaier, while the Most Improved New Dancers were Eva Batella-Mann ’12 and Cassie Disner ’12.  Senior Laura Ammons was the Most Inspirational Dancer.

Maggie Miller ’11 made an announcement on behalf of STAND regarding the current situation in Darfur.

Though the Boys Cross-country Team was still competing in the post-season, coach Fred Coleman offered a summary of the team’s awards.  Earning Most Inspirational was first year varsity phenom Nick Kohli ’10.  Most Improved veteran runner went to Alex Macmillan ’10 and Wil Rutter ’11.  Joel Reimer ’10 was Most Inspirational while Will Callan nabbed Most Valuable ‘11 Runner honors.

Ms. Mahoney announced that the Thacher Equestrian Team won their IEA horse show in Northern California, finishing first among six schools.

Alex Macmillan ’10 rallied all composters to join him at the composting area to work on the current pile and spread it to other bins.

Cory Dolphin ‘10 told the community that he and Mr. Meyer have spent some time this fall getting the school’s biodiesel system up and running again, after it had fallen into disrepair over the last two years.  Cory explained that the system is now ready to be into operation, and he is the point man on the project.

With the close of the trimester, the results were in: John Cowles ‘11 and Albert Perez ’10 topped their Economics class with the biggest profits from their investments.  John made $15,000 in profit by “investing” in pharmaceuticals and petroleum, as well as Japanese currency, while Albert netted $30,000.

*****

@Assembly: Week of 11/9


A rousing Toad Talk by Mr. Mazzola kicked off the week. Focusing on the idea of “Unity of Spirit,” he cited the recent end-of-season volleyball game and the Thacher-Cate football fame as moments where our community united and went on to offer free admission for all comers to the 1st round playoff game for the volleyball team. His term for this? “Toad Nation”!

Joel Reimer ’10 and Alex Macmillan ’10 offered Head of School Michael Mulligan the Condor League Championship trophy for boys cross-country.  This was the third year in a row that Thacher captured the championship.

Mr. Mulligan asked all of the Thacher Masquers and the stage crew, as well as Mr. Jensen and Ms. Kendrick to stand and be recognized for their fine work on the recent Thornton Wilder one-acts.  Mr. Jensen said, “The stage is a place where we don’t keep score; it’s the alchemy and the chemistry that makes the space.”

Max Hoffman, School Chair, thanked everyone who gave blood for making the bloodmobile a success.  Thirty-six pints were collected over the course of the day.

The community welcomed back the McMahons, who had spent two weeks traveling on behalf of the school in Asia.

Mr. Carney gave the jv girls tennis wrap up, which included season highlights like the team movie screened in the PAC, themed practice Fridays and moving the football blocking sleds during a brief practice break.  Julianna Childs ‘13 and Katie Taylor ’12 earned the Most Spirited while Lucy Han ’12 was named the Most Improved Player.  Lauren Zakarian-Cogswell ’10 was the team MVP.

In observance of Veterans Day, sophomores Henry Field, Derek Gulick-Stutz, and Emma Patterson read letters from CdeP graduates who also served in World War I.  The students had learned more about these Thacher alums through a history research project this fall in which they and their classmates researched a World War I Thacher veteran.

Brianna Bohnett ’10 announced that anyone was welcome to come to the Literary Society meeting after formal dinner and also to attend the Environmental Action Committee meeting on Thursday night.

Director of the Outdoor Program Brian Pidduck commended Nick Orr ’10, Will Waste ’10, Will Rutter ’11 and Alex Macmillan for achieving their B Camper rating.  The B Camper certification process involves a written, wilderness component as well as work with a compass and route planning.  Lastly, all B camper candidates must captain a successful trip with a faculty member.

The Indoor Committee welcomed anyone interested to join in on an open planning meeting to come up with events for the next few months.

Dr. Vyhnal wrapped up the jv volleyball season for us.  He announced that this was the most successful season in recent memory, as the team finished the season 9-6 overall, 7-2 in the Condor League.  The team beat Cate both times, earning a win over the Rams for the first time in several years.  Maggie Miller ’11 was the team MVP; Molly Wyman earned Most Improved Player; and Hailey Everett ’12 was the Most Inspirational Player.

Ms. Snyder reminded everyone that Jasmyn Roman ’12 would represent Thacher in the preliminaries for CIF cross-country over the weekend.

Mr. Jensen captured everyone’s attention with the announcement of the kidcentric winter musical Seussical.  This play is a compilation of 13 of Dr. Seuss’s works.  Auditions were held on Sunday.

Around Campus:

Ms. Hooper, Brianna Bohnett ’10 and Joe Bell ‘12 traveled to Libby Park and worked on restoring the Ojai Creek on Saturday morning.  

Riki Ott, one of the leading experts on the Exxon Valdez oil spill and a former Anacapa Scholar, returned to campus to screen the documentary Black Tide.  The film chronicles the spill and its continuing impact on communities along the Alaskan shore.

On Friday the Hoopers hosted a film in the Dinner-N-Docs series called Bigger, Stronger, Faster.  This film looks at steroid use and American culture.

The football team hosted LA Lutheran in the first round of the CIF playoffs and finished with a convincing 72-26 win.  Everyone on the team got plenty of playing time, with nine different Toads scoring and Kyle Griffith ‘11 scoring his first in a varsity game.

The boys cross-country team ran well in their preliminary CIF meet and will travel to the Southern Section Finals next weekend.  Will Callan ’11 clocked a time of 16:00 flat, finishing first for the team.

On Saturday night the Current Events club hosted a screening of An Inconvenient Truth at the Carney home.

The Commons came alive on Saturday night as the first Coffeehouse of the year featured sixteen acts.  From students performing solo with an acoustic guitar to four piece bands, there was something for everyone.  With freshly baked coffee cake and a large assortment of hot beverages on hand, everyone seemed to enjoy the evening.

*****

@Assembly: Week of 11/2


The first full week in November brought production week for the play and the final week of regular season fall athletics.

Mr. Haggard reported that the Thacher Chorale, which traveled to the Choral Festival in Santa Barbara, “brought the house down and stole the show”  at the non-competitive event.

Ms. Hooper thanked Richard Maxwell and he kitchen crew as well as the Tech Crew for their efforts to help make the Halloween Dance a success.

Eunice Ruiz ’10 reminded the community to think of lost loved ones as a part of Dia de los Muertos.

Max Hoffman announced that the blood drive would be postponed until next week.

Mr. Schryver publically congratulated Cayce Cover ’12, Miles Fossett ’12 and Olivia Stonehouse ’11 for earning their Advanced Rider ranking.

Mr. Huyler welcomed back Peter Baumgartner CdeP 1951.  While a student at Thacher Pete served as captain of the Orange Team and also rode 300 miles home to the Bay Area at the end of the school year.

Mr. Jensen introduced Tappan Wilder, nephew of Thornton Wilder CdeP 1915 and executor of the Wilder literary estate.  Tappan’s father, Amos was  CdeP 1913. Tappan spoke to the community on Tuesday night after formal dinner about Thornton Wilder’s career in preparation for the school production of The Happy Journey to Trenton and Camden and Pullman Car Hiawatha. Tappan also visited classes, spoke to the audience after Thursday's performance and was on campus for three days, staying at the Anacapa house.

Kurt Meyer publicly thanked Douglas Coughran ’10, Sarae Snyder ’10, Dr. Vyhnal, Joe Bell ’12, Mr. Bueti, Nick Orr ’10 and the Orr family for the work accomplished on the avocado trees that are on the gymkhana road.  The group tackled the long untended trees on Saturday, completing one whole side of the road.  The work on the trees will make them much more productive in coming years.  He invited anyone interested to come out again to finish the other side of the road this Saturday.

Michael Stenovec encouraged anyone interested in submitting an article to The Notes to email it to him by the end of the day on Wednesday.

Around Campus:

On Wednesday the Thacher girls’ volleyball team hosted Cate in their final regular season game.  The team was looking to avenge an earlier season loss, and the game was particularly important as a Thacher victory meant a second place tie with Cate in the league.  It would then take a coin toss between the two teams to see who would get the playoff berth.  After losing the first game, Thacher game back to win the next three, cementing the overall win.  With a large crowd on hand (heavily featuring orange and green face paint!), Thacher then won the coin toss, and the gym echoed with Thacher cheers.  The girls will play at home on Tuesday, November 10 at 7 PM.

The community enjoyed three banner performances of Thornton Wilder’s two One Act plays, The Happy Journey to Camden and Trenton and Pullman Car Hiawatha.  

On Friday night, the Mulligans hosted Open House, and the Indoor Committee hosted a game of dodgeball in the gym.  It was Seniors vs. the world, and despite facing two thirds of the student population, the seniors came out on top.

Ms. Hooper, Lauren Bosche ‘10 and Joe Bell ’12 worked in town with the Ojai Valley Green Coalition on the Ojai Creek clean up project.  The Green Coalition is working to rid the creek bed of invasive species and to reestablish native plants.

Saturday afternoon brought the final regular season game for the Toad football team.  The squad headed to Cate to face the undefeated Rams.  After finding themselves down 28-0 at the end of the first quarter, the team rallied to score 42 unanswered points, ultimately winning 42-34 and earning a fourth Condor League championship in five years.  These Toads will play its first playoff game at home next Saturday, November 14.

(TS)2 +G, a performance group consisting of Teresa Findley ’10, Trudy Park ’10, Sam Meyer ’10, Scott Lee ’11 and Grace Lowe ‘11 performed on the grassy area near Serendipity Toys in downtown Ojai on Saturday along with several other local bands.  The performance was well received.

The Indoor Committee put on its first ever Fondue night in the Commons on Saturday night.  With eight kinds of fondue served, students enjoyed a multitude of items to dip (from pound cake to apples, bananas and chocolate wafers and even meat) and sauces to try—from the classic cheese to peppermint and marmalade.  With four-square on the Pergola, the music guild jamming inside and a gigantic game of Twister going on as well, everyone seemed to find good company to keep over the course of the evening.

Several students headed off campus for a camping weekend.  Heather Grant headed north to El Capitan State Beach in Goleta.  Accompanying her were Ashley Sauvain ’10, David Andrade ’11, Marquis Warren ’11, Lauren Butler ’12, Giovanna Grigsby-Rocca ’12, Juliana Childs ’13 and Brisha Howe ’13.  The group explored tide pools by headlamp, made pancakes for breakfast and generally enjoyed the beach before breaking camp and heading back to campus in time for the play on Saturday night.

Mr. Okin headed to Chimeas Ranch with Cody Renfrew ’13, Grady Jacobsen ’13, Zane Schryver ’13, Jacob Nelson, JJ Ntshaykolo ’13, Spencer Hanley ‘13 and Bradley Callander ‘13.  The group spent two nights sorting cattle, driving cattle, and searching for cattle.  The boys had several adventures—with tree branches and with deep ravines—but all returned home healthy and experienced in the art of cattle rustling. Spencer Hanley commented, “We herded the cows, about 100, into one of roughly 8 pens. Then, the separating came. This was the most intense part of the herding process. You take a group of 10-20 cows, and separate them from the other 100, in the same pen, and herd certain types into other stalls. Trying to trap a bucking, galloping, one ton cow takes agility.”

The Spirituality Committee hosted a talk about the Baha’i Faith after Formal Dinner on Sunday night.

Mr. Curwen gave a talk after Formal on his studies and fieldwork that he did for his masters degree in maritime archeology.  In the talk he spoke about the excavation he did on a remote island off the coast of Maine as a part of his MA thesis.

Several Thacher students headed to Los Angeles with teacher Mike McGowan for a Model UN Conference.  Participants included Julie Park ’10, Maggie Miller ’11, Georgi deRham ’10, Mouna Lawrence ’11, Lucy Han ’12, JinYeo Jung ’12, MaryEllen Funke ’11, Josh Cho ’13, Justin Miles ’13, Nu Xiong ’12 and Sarah Ratsimbazafy ’13.  Over the course of weekend the students learned a lot and also passed two resolutions.

*****

@Assembly: Week of 10/26


The week after Family Weekend found everyone still busy until a holiday arrived on Thursday.  After “kidnapping” Mr. Mulligan, Mr. Klausler and the girls of Sespe dormitory declared a holiday for the school.  Everyone on campus enjoyed some down time to catch up on college applications, grading, or simply life in general.
 
Mr. Mulligan thanked the community at large for “an extraordinary Family Weekend.”
 
Mr. Robinson reminded all students that course sign ups for the second trimester are due on Wednesday, November 4.
 
Sam Meyer ’10, Teresa Findley ’10, and Brianna Bohnett ’10, thrilled the crowd with an acoustic version of “Crazy,” by Gnarls Barkley to get the word out about the upcoming coffeehouse.
 
Iona Hugan ‘10, a co-Head of Therapeutic Riding of Thacher, asked all interested riders to join in for a session with five students ranging in age from 5-8.
 
School Chair Max Hoffman ’10 announced that Thacher’s first blood drive of the year would occur on Monday and encouraged eligible students and faculty to sign up.
 
Chris Mazzola offered a public congratulation to Jesse Garrett ’11, who was one of ten photographers (out of 70,000 submitted photos) chosen as a winner for the 2009 National Wildlife Photo Contest.  Jesse’s photo will be featured in the December 2009 issue of National Wildlife Magazine.
 
Mr. Robinson introduced two academic programs that Thacher is affiliated with—Chewonki, also known as Maine Coast Semester, and School Year Abroad, which now has programs in France, China, Italy and a one semester offering in Vietnam.  Next year, a program will open in Japan as well.  Current sophomores interested in applying will need to submit applications by January 15, 2010.
 
Erin Chisholm ’12, made an informative announcement on behalf of STAND regarding the current crisis in Sri Lanka.
 
The whole community enjoyed the Los Padres Open House film, which touted the seven reasons why their Open House would be a great party.  It featured a frisky Brie (the Meyer’s dog), some guerilla dance parties, and lots of cereal eating by Charlie LeFevre’ 12.
 
Around campus:
 
The Hoopers and the Elmores kicked off a new Indoor Committee feature, known as Dinner N Docs.  Each faculty member chose a documentary to screen and hosted 10-15 students for dinner and the film.
 
On Saturday night, all students got gussied up for the first assigned date dance of the year.  With its Halloween theme, outfits ranged from a perfect Audrey Hepburn, a gigantic banana, Robin Hood, Supergirl, Cinderella, and the Village People.  Ultimately, the homemade octopus costume sported by Austin Krause ’10 won him the Mr. Halloween crown, while senior Lauren Stephanian’s Little Orphan Annie costume won her the title of Mrs. Halloween.  Students enjoyed the spooky ambiance of the Outdoor Theatre, which looked like a witch’s grotto.
 
Meanwhile, the Mulligans’ Open House enjoyed a healthy crowd looking to warm up after the dance or simply to enjoy the evening of cookie baking, coloring, movie watching and good conversation.
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