the ridge - blue ridge school's magazine

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Private all-boys boarding school bi annual magazine.


  • from the ACTING HEADMASTER TheRidge

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    Today at Blue Ridge School, there are many great reasons to be excited. In January, I was honored to announce the promotion of Dr. Kevin Miller to the position of Associate Headmaster for Academics (you will read more about him in an article on page nine). A beloved BRS teacher who honed his curricular expertise at UVAs renowned Curry School of Education, Dr. Miller is the perfect addition to the strong management team we now have in place. Energy is high among school leaders as we plan new course offerings, expand athletic, art and music programming, and increase the use of technology in classrooms.The mission of Blue Ridge School has never before been more needed. BRS is one of only two all-boys, all-boarding, college-preparatory schools in the United States. That combination is highly valued by parents and the reasons why are clear: Blue Ridge has a Learning Model and curriculum tailored to address boys specific learning needs. Our teachers are skilled at connecting with students, forming strong, mentoring relationships that enable an individualized approach in classes of nine students. With any good idea, success is in the execution. Our teachers apply boys-specific teaching methodologies in the classroom and through extra-curricular activities:Hands-on learning US History teacher Vinton Bruton invited Civil War re-enactors to campus to teach about the life of Civil

    War soldiers. The boys loaded and fired black powder charges from a rifled-musket, marched in formation, and tried on uniforms to bring historic battles to life. They also staged a Civil War camp by Cabin Lake where students cooked and ate meals common to soldiers, then spent the night in the cabin.Product-based learning & role playing read about Mr. Peter Bonds Twitter experiment on page five.Rites of passage and stretching comfort zones read about Corey Woods Desolation Canyon rafting adventure with eight students on page 15.The BRS Learning Model relies on the strong connection between student and teacher, young man and mentoring adult. At present, only 65% of our faculty is able to live on campus. It is my highest priority to build more homes on campus to increase

    the opportunities for daily interactions between our boys and their teachers outside of the classroom. Towards this end, our Advancement Team is leading a project called the BRS Faculty Commons and I invite you to read more about this project on page 17. Planning and fund raising for another important capital project - the Baron Athletic Complex is underway and will transform our lower fields and main entrance. For more than a decade, our track has been in a state of disrepair. The Baron Athletic Complex will feature a multi-purpose stadium turf field, eight-lane track, three competition-quality practice fields, and a riverside pavilion to host community events. Our Advancement Team has begun seeking funding for this initiative and I am pleased that several generous donors have already joined the effort.Assembly announcements from College Counselor Carrie Woods are routine these days; naming colleges into which our students have gained admission: Sewanee - University of the South, NYU, Drexel, Loyola-Marymount, and George Washington University. At this early stage, well over half of our seniors know where theyll be studying next year. As we approach Commencement in a short three months, we feel somewhat conflicted - proud that BRS will send off another successful alumni class, yet sad this group of young gentlemen, with whom weve all become so close, will have concluded their careers as BRS students.It is a time of optimism and excitement at Blue Ridge School. I invite you to come see this for yourself please know that you are welcome to drop by campus and my office anytime.

    Sincerely,Trip Darrin

  • EdiTOR Ashley SmithWRiTERS & COnTRiBuTORSPete BondsFranklin DanielsDaniel DunsmoreJohn HetzelJamie Miller 94Ashley SmithCory WoodsPhOTOgRAPhyJohn HetzelAshley SmithCory WoodsACTING HEADMASTERTrip DarrinChAiRmAn, BOARd Of TRuSTEESJean HartPRESidEnT, Alumni COunCilJames Moore 75PRESidEnT, PAREnTS ASSOCiATiOnCynthia WeldonBluE RidgE SChOOlSt. George, Virginia 22935Switchboard:

    Blue Ridge School admits qualified young men of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally ac-corded or made available to students at the School. Blue Ridge School does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administra-tion of its educational policies, admission policies, financial assistance and loan programs, athletic, and other adminis-tered programs.

    TheRidgeFEATURESClearing the Way 6The new BRS Gateway Trails SystemDefining Driven 7faculty profile of School Counselor MarkleyAndersonWelcome Back Dr. Miller 9Interview with new Associate Headmaster KevinMillerHistory, Science, and Adventure 15 on the Green RiverBRS Desolation Canyon rafting expeditionMilestones at Blue Ridge 17Faculty Commons and Battle House repurposingAlumni Weekend 19Recap of 2011 and new events and programming for 2012Blue Ridge International Travelers 23Alumni share stories from their travels abroadDEPARTMENTSFrom the Acting Headmaster 1Around Campus 3Post Season Updates 12Alumni Notes 21In Memoriam 25Annual Fund Update 26

    COVER: Dr. KevinMiller assists ScottSullivan13 in the Fishburne Learning Center.

    BACK COVER: Ridge Rowdies PatrickGooge12, SpencerAchtymichuk12, and ChrisHick-man12 cheer on the Barons at BRS vs. STAB football game.


    Alumni Weekend








  • around CAMPUSHonoring Years of Service40yearsJohnYoungChair of the English Department10yearsStacyAylorBusiness Office managerMarciaKozloskiChair of the Foreign Language Department5yearsThomasColbertAssistant Headmaster for ResourcesWilliamTripDarrinActing HeadmasterJamieMiller94Alumni DirectorLouiseMorrisAdmissions Office managerDavidWeltyVisual Art Teacher

    Board of Trustee TransitionsDr.BarbaraHarty-Golder, alumni parent from Tennessee, and JaneSteves, alumni parent from Texas, both retired from Blue Ridge Schools Board of Trustees in the Fall of 2011 after serving nine-year terms.

    RobertB.Livy, who served on the BRS Board of Trustees since 2002, died peacefully April 23, 2011 after a brief illness. Mr. Livy was a lifelong resident of Richmond, Virginia, and communicant of St. Stephens Episco-pal Church. He taught at the Col-legiate School for Boys for 24 years. His relationship with BRS began early in his teaching career; he served as English teacher and Aquatics director for BRSs summer programs for 20 years. He was member of the Torch Club of Richmond, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, the Commonwealth Club, Country Club of Virginia and Farmington Country Club. New members of the Board for the fall of 2011 and winter of 2012 are: WilliamS.CarverII75, from Rocky Mount, North Carolina; Dr.DavidHamer, current parent of Jack12, from Char-lottesville, VA; LanaIngram, alumni parent, from Fredericks-burg, Virginia; and D.PageSullenberger, alumni parent, from

    Orange, Virginia.

    Fall Parents WeekendThe weekend of October 28-30, 2011 the BRS Parents Coun-cil held its annual Silent Auction. Under the leadership of Parents Association President CynthiaWeldon, mother of Chris12, parent and faculty volunteers gathered a number of great trips, art, gift baskets, and more for attendees consideration. The fund raising results from the weekend were outstanding raising close to $20,000 this year. The funds raised from the Silent Auction go to the Parents Council Fund which is used to enhance the Blue Ridge experience for our students throughout the year. The New York AuxiliaryBlue and White Ball

    The New York Auxiliary hosted, yet again, another enjoyable and successful gala. The 2012 Blue and White Ball, chaired by KellyHarris and HollyHunt, was attended by nearly 140 guests, and honored BRSs former Chairman of the Board of Trustees MichaelG.Boswell, parent of Daniel01, for his many contribu-tions of both time and treasure. Mr. Boswell, who now serves as an Advisory Trustee, was presented a one-of-a-kind pair of cufflinks, hand engraved with the Blue Ridge School seal.The event, which included a fabulous silent auction and yard sale, raised over $45,000 to support the construction of Blue Ridge Schools new Track and Field Center. Stephanie Lan-dess, formally of Christies, led the yard sale in which yards of the track were auctioned. Ball Co-chairs Mrs. Harris and Mrs. Hunt look forward to once again supporting the track and field initiative in 2013 to reach their goal of raising a total of $100,000.

    Save the Date! Next years Blue and White Ball will be held Saturday, January 26, 2013.

    Robert B. Livy

    Assistant Head for Enrollment Don Smith, his wife Bonnie, Karen Fink, wife of Acting Headmaster Trip Darrin (far right) at the 2012 Blue and White Ball.

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  • New International ProgrammingPart of our students experience at Blue Ridge School is meeting students from all over the world; this year, BRS has students from 19 states and 17 countries. International Student Coordinator/Admissions Associate AlannaPardee, a new addition to the BRS faculty and staff, has taken great care to increase awareness of international cultures. Diversity is a great strength for boarding schools. For both domestic and international students, it is an opportunity to learn about other cultures, and create lasting friendships with someone from across the globe, Ms. Pardee commented. Throughout the fall trimester and winter trimesters, Ms. Pardee has planned