The Browning School’s 27th Annual Thanksgiving Assembly took place on November 25 at Christ Church. Members of the Drumming Circle performed "Improvisations from the New World" while attendees took their seats, followed by a warm welcome from Headmaster Clement. Mr. Clement noted that this is his 27th Thanksgiving assembly but the first Browning assembly the Pre-Primary boys have attended. He also mentioned that later in the program, the alumni in attendance would come forward. He referred to these youngest and oldest groups as the “alpha” and “omega” and remarked on how pleased he was that they, along with the rest of the boys in between, could be present for one of his favorite events of the school year.
Robert Frost’s "After Apple-Picking" was read by a Form IV boy, and the president of the Upper School Student Council offered Thanksgiving remarks. (Read his comments below the photo gallery.) He thanked the community for thinking of others at this time of year, particularly those who contributed to the success of the recent Thanksgiving Food Drive by the Middle School Student Council. The president of that council then took to the podium, noting that the food drive collected over 400 pounds of food to benefit the New York (formerly Yorkville) Common Pantry. He was pleased to add that this effort helps provide Thanksgiving meals for hundreds of local families in need. (Read his comments at bottom of page.)
Music is an integral part of this gathering, and as is tradition, the Browning community sang "We Gather Together" in unison, led by an ensemble of faculty singers. Performances were presented by the Ovation Orchestra (J.S. Bach’s "An Wasserflüssen Babylon/By the Waters of Babylon"), the Grade Four Browning Balladeers (Lower School Music Specialist Lucy Warner’s "Give Thanks/Make New Friends") and Form II Handchimes ("An American Medley").
Director of College Guidance Sanford M. Pelz ’71 and the Class of 2015 welcomed returning alumni, always a favorite part of this annual program. The alumni introduced themselves and indicated the college they are currently attending. Finally, no Thanksgiving Assembly is ever complete without a special appearance by the Browning Panther mascot; this year he was dressed as a turkey and carried an assortment of tools as a nod to the ongoing construction at the School. Headmaster Clement read a poem, with the Panther by his side, about the many accomplishments of the Browning boys so far this year including publication of the fall edition of the Grytte student newspaper handed out that very day. Lastly the community sang "The Browning Song" with gusto, perhaps in anticipation of their well-deserved Thanksgiving recess. Well done, one and all!
Remarks by Basil Chalabi ’15
Good morning, peers and faculty. It’s nice to see you all once again sitting within the confines of this church. And let us all welcome the Pre-Primary boys who traditionally make their first appearance at Christ Church during the Thanksgiving assembly.
I would like to start by highlighting the Student Council’s most recent achievement. Starting in the coming weeks after Thanksgiving Break, Browning will once again reignite its relationship with the FLI program, a Browning-led program which allows Browning students to tutor Lower and Middle School students within the FLI School in both English and Math. I strongly urge every student within the Upper School to lend a helping hand, especially given this time of thanks. We are all extremely fortunate to be able to take advantage of the many opportunities Browning makes possible for each and every one of us, and it only seems fitting that we do our utmost to extend this notion to others in need.
I would also like to give a round of applause to the members of the Middle School Student Council who have worked tirelessly to donate a delicious assortment of food goods to the New York (formerly Yorkville) Common Pantry. This Thanksgiving, I would like us all to not only be thankful for the opportunities we are allowed here at Browning, but to also think about how we can use these opportunities to better the experience of our surrounding community. Thank you everyone, and I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving.
Remarks by William Eun ’19
Hello, my name is William Eun, and I am the president of the Middle School Student Council.
For the past several years, Browning has always been extremely charitable to the New York [formerly Yorkville] Common Pantry by donating various food items to help provide great Thanksgiving meals to families in need. It has become an important Browning tradition. This year, I am pleased to announce that we have donated over 400 pounds of food, including stuffing mix, turkey gravy, beans, rice, cake mixes and much, much more. Because of your help, hundreds of families will be able to enjoy the Thanksgiving they deserve. Thank you, everyone, for donating, and let’s continue to spread the charitable spirit during the rest of the year.