Sometime in mid-April SBS usually holds the first of many spring BBQ’s. There are many great places on campus to barbeque including the hill overlooking the back fields and the courtyard. There’s nothing better than dinner outside on a beautiful summer night!
#106: 9th Grade Overnight.
I remember my own 9th grade overnight and the various antics my classmates and I engaged in. Six years later the 9th grade class still heads to Roads End Farm in Southern New Hampshire for their overnight bonding trip. It’s a chance to get to know friends while spending time enjoying the outdoors…and you get to help throw hay to the horses in the morning from the back of the tractor!
#105: The Attic.
Students at SBS are lucky since they don’t have to take all their extra stuff home every year, instead they can box it up and store it in the attic over the summer. Why bring home your winter jacket and snowboard for summer vacation, you won’t need them!
The “Phone-A-Thon Fiesta” as it’s been named in recent years is a great way to connect with alumnae young and old while helping your school. Plus, it’s a fiesta which means yummy snacks and games throughout the time you’re volunteering. What a fun way to get involved!
#103: Barn Proctors.
They arrive at the barn before you and they stay till it closes. Barn proctors help make sure everyone is pulling their weight at the barn and they assist our coaches during horse shows. Our barn wouldn’t run as smoothly as it does without their help!
#112: Long Winter Weekend.
Seriously, who wouldn’t love a 5 day break at the end of January. Just when the dreary cold days start to get to you, SBS gives you a long weekend! Whether you head home, take a mini vacation, go on a school trip (Montreal anyone?) or head to a friends house, Long Winter Weekend is a welcome break!
#111: Spearth Day.
Community service in the morning and carnival in the afternoon. Favorite activities in the past have included the dunk tank, cotton candy machine and of course, the talent show (more on that later).
#110: Omelets to Order.
If waffles don’t do it for you, there are always omelets to order available on weekends. With tons of fresh veggies, meats and cheeses to choose from its a great way to start your weekend off right!
#109: Faculty Pets.
Whether your partial to cats, dogs, bunny rabbits or plants there are tons of faculty “pets” to choose from. I’m partial to my own dog (who is about to be made famous) but there are lots of other pets on campus too! From our Dean of Students black labs to our Academic Deans Newfoundland..to our Spanish Teachers “pet plants” (we know they aren’t really pets but hey, so what!) there is something for everyone…and don’t worry, if you aren’t a fan (or you’re unfortunately allergic) we make sure to keep them far away from you!
#108: Community Service Club.
Whether they are preparing a community meal or raising money to donate to the heifer project the community service club is always active and involved! They keep SBS students involved in and active in helping others as near as Greenfield, MA and as far away as Africa!
#117: Dining Hall.
There are a lot of places on campus with beautiful views. We are situated on the top of a hill and surrounded by fields so it’s hard to find a place on campus that isn’t pretty. Our dining hall is no exception…it has tons of windows and they all look out over the front fields and the oval. In addition to being a sunny place to enjoy a meal, the dining hall has a friendly staff and delicious food which just makes it one more thing to love about SBS!
#116: International Lunch.
Being a small school we have the opportunity to do things in ways that many larger schools can’t. One example of this is our international lunch. Each year our students work with the dining hall staff to prepare food from each of their respective countries. This years lunch featured the Korean version of fried dough, Haitian pulled pork with rice and beans, plantain chips and sushi. Yum!
#115: The Owl.
What would a list of things to love about SBS be without a mention of our mascot? The owl, known for it’s wisdom, has long been associated with Stoneleigh-Burnham School. The owl cheers on our teams from the sidelines of the games and always manages to liven up the crowd!
#114: The Holiday Basketball Tournament.
Each year Stoneleigh-Burnham hosts the annual Holiday Basketball Tournament. This tournament, which has included schools like Wilbraham and Monson, Proctor Academy, Brewster Academy and the Winsor School began in 2004-2005 and has been held annually for the last 6 years.
#113: Students of Color Club.
Students of Color Club or SoCC, is fairly new to SBS, but in the few years since their creation they have been very active in the community! From movies to presentations, SoCC is always keeping the Stoneleigh-Burnham community informed.
#122: All Girls.
There aren’t many places where it’s acceptable to dance in your pajamas in public…or laugh so loud you cry…or play hide and go seek after the age of 10 without being embarrassed. That’s one of the joys of all girls education though, in addition to academics tailored to the learning styles of girls there is a sense of comfort that is specific to all girls schools.
#121: The Library.
SBS has a great library filled with comfy chairs for relaxing with a good book and big tables for spreading out your work and studying. If you need to do internet research there are computers located all around the perimeter of the room for academic work. If you can’t find what you need, one of the wonderful things about our location is our proximity to the five colleges (Amherst, Mount Holyoke, Smith, UMass Amherst and Hampshire). This means if for some reason you can’t find what you need in our library…we can get it from one of the five college libraries located less than 20 minutes away.
Sally Mixsell ’69 is our wonderful Head of School. Sally is always warm and welcoming to visitors, families and students…and she knows everyone by name too! She leads by example and shows our students just how much you can accomplish with hard work, determination and poise.
#119: Big and Little Sisters.
Big and Little Sisters are a longstanding tradition here at Stoneleigh-Burnham. As a freshman I remember arriving at SBS to find a handmade sign on my door from my big sister, Rugie, welcoming me to SBS. As a sophomore I can remember being so excited to have Amanda, a close friend of mine, become my big sister. By the time I finally became a senior I had so many plans and schemes for my little sisters! Big and Little Sisters are a huge part of every girls experience here at SBS.
#118: The Snapshot:
Every other week the Communications Office (also known as Holly and Carly…check out their blog here) sends out a publication called the Snapshot. It’s filled with news and pictures of all the wonderful things that Stoneleigh-Burnham girls are doing. It’s a great way to keep on top of all the exciting things going on at Stoneleigh-Burnham School.
#127: Fresh Waffles.
On Saturday and Sunday mornings in the dining hall. ‘Nuff said.
#126: Blue Key.
I have a personal bias when it comes to this reason to love Stoneleigh-Burnham School. As a student I was a member of Blue Key and I gave tours nearly every week…and fairly often during the summer as well! Now, as Associate Director of Admissions I rely on Blue Key to represent SBS well to visiting families and consultants. Not only do I trust these girls to share the mission of SBS with all our prospective students but I expect them to share exactly what makes SBS tick. Blue Key Tour Guides are dedicated, intelligent, outgoing, charismatic and irreplaceable…I don’t know what I would do without them!
#125: The Clock Tower.
The clock tower has been the highlight of many a photograph, and for a few years, even the letterhead! It’s instantly recognizable as part of SBS and it’s a familiar site to alumnae young and old.
#124: The Play.
Each winter SBS students and faculty collaborate to direct, rehearse and ultimately perform a play which was previously chosen by our Theater teacher. From straight plays to musicals, SBS has done it all. Check out a review of our most recent play in the Director of Admissions Blog.
Upper Mary Burnham or UMB houses all our Middle School students, one Athletic Trainer and his family…and one Associate Director of Admissions and her puppy. With gorgeous views of the Oval and the Athletic Fields from each dorm room window, UMB is a wonderful place to spend your first two years here. Silliness and laughter preside on UMB and there is always something mischievous going on. Check out some of the UMB antics in this earlier post.
#132: Horse Shows.
It’s not everyday that more than 100 people flock to campus, trailers in tow to compete in one of the SBS horse shows…however, several times a year our campus fills to the brim with trailers, horses, competitors and Stoneleigh-Burnham friends, families and fans. If you aren’t familiar with horse shows it might be hard to imagine but a few weekends each year, the horses own the road and cars and people take a back seat! It’s unlike anything you’ve ever experienced (if you aren’t a part of the equestrian world!).
#131: Secret Snowflake.
Secret Snowflake is a yearly holiday tradition here and it always puts everyone in the holiday spirit. Organized by StuCo, Secret Snowflake is the two week game leading up to the Faculty Holiday Skit and the beginning of Winter Break. It’s a time to surprise friends and make people smile and it’s just one of the many reasons to love SBS.
#130: Day Students.
Arriving each morning and departing just after dinner, Day Students help make SBS tick. Without them, we would have less homes away from home, fewer weekend adventures and far fewer cups of coffee and trips to the grocery store.Our Day Students are a wonderful addition to our community and they, and their families, help make the SBS community so caring and supportive.
MOCA or Middle School Office Caring for All, is the Middle School equivalent of StuCo (our Student Council). MOCA meets weekly and gives the Middle School students a chance to plan activities, add their voice to decisions about the Middle School and become more involved in SBS. MOCA is led by the students and the leadership rotates, allowing each student the chance to develop her own leadership style. It’s always fun and gives each Middle School girl one more way to figure out what her passions are.
#128: Lazer Tag.
Lazer Tag is fun. No matter which way you look at it, there’s something about it that appeals to adults and students alike. Here at SBS we have our own set of Lazer Tag equipment…and we aren’t afraid to use it! Throughout the course of the year students and faculty will join together and play several games of Lazer Tag on the first floor of the building. It’s usually on a Friday night and it’s always a blast. Our unique “a” shaped building offers up tons of hiding places, from stairwells to doorways, there is always somewhere sneaky to take cover during a game. It’s just another way we try to make life here at SBS fun!
#137: Mountain Day.
Everyone loves a free day off from classes…but it’s even better when it’s a surprise! Each fall, Stoneleigh-Burnham celebrates Mountain Day, a surprise break from classes and a chance to bond with your classmates and friends.
Even if you don’t like horses you probably think they are beautiful animals. Here at SBS we have lots and if the weather is nice, they’re outside. Whether you spot them in the turnout paddocks as you’re pulling into the driveway or cantering through the field during a lesson they add to the beauty of our campus.
#135: Move-in Weekend.
Each fall Stoneleigh-Burnham students return in a staggered order over the course of a weekend. Each year the international students arrive first, followed by the new students then the returning students. As we move through the weekend the excitement level on campus grows a bit each day. By the time the returning students arrive the sound of laughter and joy overwhelms even the loudest announcement. Move-in weekend reminds many why they love SBS as they return to campus and rediscover their favorite things.
#134: The Smell.
If you’ve never attended Stoneleigh-Burnham School it’s going to be hard to understand how the smell of Stoneleigh-Burnham could be something to love…but it is. No matter how long you’ve been gone, Stoneleigh-Burnham when you return to SBS you will be delighted to discover it still smells the same. In 2000, when I started as a freshman here at Stoneleigh-Burnham the smell was the same as it was eight years later when I returned to become the Associate Director of Admissions. It’s a bit like horses, a little bit like books and a whole lot like coming back home.
#133: Class Meetings.
Here at SBS there are weekly class meetings with class deans and fellow classmates. During class meetings students talk about community service projects, upcoming events and other issues relating to each particular class (i.e. college applications or adjusting to SBS). Class meeting is another chance to get together with friends and spend time learning and discussing outside of the classroom.