Head of School John Botti observed his first Thanksgiving Assembly (the School’s 29th) with the Browning community on November 22. In his welcoming remarks, he reminded those present that it was President Abraham Lincoln who, in 1863, in the midst of the Civil War, proclaimed Thanksgiving a national holiday to be celebrated each November. Mr. Botti, no doubt sharing the sentiments of most of those present, described the day as “a wonderful one,” to be shared with family and friends.
A number of boys addressed the audience, reading from such works as “Friendship IXX” by Kahil Gibran (“And in the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter, and sharing of pleasures”) and “Thanksgiving Time” by Langston Hughes (“When one’s appetite craves turkey and will have no other fowl, it’s Thanksgiving Time!”), echoing Mr. Botti’s words that this holiday is meant to be spent with those we love, enjoying one another’s company and, of course, all the food and trimmings!
As is tradition, faculty singers led the community in “We Gather Together,” one of the many musical selections of the assembly. Performances by the Drumming Circle (“Improvisations from the New World”), Ovation Orchestra (Mozart’s “Minuet in G, K. 105”), Browning Balladeers (“Damos Gracias/We Give Thanks” and “Make New Friends”) and Form II Handchimes (“An American Medley”) added to the festive nature of the event. Presidents of both the Middle and Upper School Councils remarked on the success of the school year so far, from the winning fall sports teams to the record-breaking amount of food (860 pounds) collected during the annual food drive.
The Class of 2017 and Director of College Guidance Sandy Pelz ’71 welcomed returning alumni, while the Panther mascot, along with music teacher Richard Symons, led the community in singing The Browning School Song.
After the assembly, alumni were treated to a reception back at the School where they mingled with former teachers and Form VI boys.