by Brenda Moore, Grade 12 boarder
The much-anticipated Parents’ Auxiliary Christmas Evening Celebration commenced at half-past six on Saturday, December 6th in the school chapel. Reverend Keven Fletcher led us in a medley of Christmas carols, while we marvelled at the chapel’s majestically decorated interior. Accompanied by Ms. Donna Williams’ student carollers and Brandon Ewonus on piano, we sang classics such as “We Three Kings” and “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.” We moved into the double gym at 7:00 and were greeted by the Middle School Brass Ensemble.
We found ourselves in a winter wonderland. Flowing, coloured fabrics hung from the ceiling, and seemed to sparkle in the spotlights like the Northern Lights. Each spotlight was covered with a sheath of colour, creating a warm and festive atmosphere. It was a fantastic turnout, with over 700 guests, including the boarding students from all six houses: Winslow, Symons, Timmis, Barnacle, Harvey, and Bolton. With over one hundred tables to set, the Parents’ Auxiliary outdid themselves with their attractive and innovative centerpieces. Each table was set with a light-emitting stand on which stood great cylindrical glass vases. From these, sprigs of tall dried pampas grass sprouted upwards, giving way to three-foot wide silver star-shaped balloons which shimmered in the light of the “Aurora”. Along one wall, the prizes of the silent auction were displayed, ranging from a children’s birthday party with the Oak Bay Fire Department to a romantic getaway for two at Victoria’s Marriot Hotel.
With Mr. Ian Farish as MC for the evening, the tables were conducted one-by-one to the grand buffet centered in front of the stage. The Children’s Dessert Buffet opened soon afterwards and became quite popular with a variety of “make-your-own-dessert” options. Before long, the gym was filled with energized youngsters, only too keen to begin the dance segment of the evening. Before the adults indulged in the larger dessert buffet, there was one more task to be completed: the PA had carefully placed a verse from the 12 Days of Christmas at each table. From “a partridge in a pear tree” to “twelve drummers drumming”, the gym was shortly filled with the rich sound of voices sharing this SMUS tradition.
When the dinner buffet was cleared from the dance floor, the DJ began to spin a fabulous selection of songs which catered to both young and old. The floor was quickly filled with “grooving” guests, moving in unison to golden oldies like the “YMCA” song, the Macarena, and the Chicken Dance. All in all, it was a beautiful and memorable evening for which the members of the PA should be very proud. There is nothing more wonderful at this time of year than the company of friends sharing a meal together in celebration of another year come and gone.
Event photos, courtesy of parent Evan Effa, are available in the photo gallery.