It is always a joy to have our Saints family together again! Our annual Family Weekend and Homecoming festivities brought Canterbury alumni, family, and friends to campus last weekend as more than 300 visitors gathered on the hilltop to celebrate—and the rain didn’t dampen their spirits one bit.
Guests who arrived Thursday night enjoyed a terrific concert by talented student musicians and singers at Italia Mia restaurant in New Milford. The show featured a variety of songs from our Contemporary Music Band, Rock Band, Jazz Ensemble, and Varsity Voices as a standing-room-only crowd clapped and sang along.
The following morning, family members of students started the day with breakfast together. They were then treated to a delightful performance from Varsity Voices and Chorale in the Steers Center Ragland Commons and welcomed by Head of School Rachel Stone P ’23, ’24, who updated them on the current state of the School. Families also dined with their students, sat in on classes, attended college information sessions, and watched afternoon activities and practices throughout the day.
The evening featured our Varsity Football home game under the Friday night lights at Hamilton Stadium, and the team came through with a thrilling 28-21 victory over Berkshire School. The crowd was loud and supportive throughout the tightly contested game.
On Saturday, families attended classes, faculty conferences, a presentation on mental health, and lunch. Throughout the weekend, they also had the opportunity to view a student art exhibit in the Edward J. Duffy Family Art Gallery.
“It was wonderful to spend time with Cavan ’24 as a current student, and with Will ’18 and Jed ’17 as alumni,” said Mara Dowler P ’17, ’18, ’23. “Even after attending this event many times over the years with our other sons, we still enjoy going to classes and hearing from Mrs. Stone. One of our favorite things about the weekend is attending conferences because of the quality time spent with each teacher, coach, advisor, and dorm parent hearing about different aspects of Cavan’s entire experience at Canterbury.”
As for alumni, they had a blast sharing stories and participating in all the activities Homecoming had to offer, including Friday’s pregame tailgate in Hamilton Stadium and postgame tailgate at Housatonic River Brewing, lunch under the Homecoming tent on Saturday, and the various Saints athletic contests.
Enthusiastic members of our Class of 1973 returned to campus for their 50th reunion, with 16 classmates celebrating lasting friendships and good times. They dined together on several occasions, heard from a panel of current students, enjoyed the Homecoming festivities, and more during the three days. The class also invited and honored four former faculty members—J.P. and Lou Mandler, Peter Bordonaro, and Jack Gaudreau.
Highlights of the reunion included Class Ambassador Peter Bresnan ’73 picking up his guitar to play and sing a special song he wrote in tribute to two classmates who passed away, Ed Kelly ’73 and William “King” Gladden ’73. “We all know those two broke the mold, too much life to ever grow old,” said the song’s chorus. Also, Brian Donnelly ’73 shared a nostalgic slideshow he painstakingly created using old photos from their days at Canterbury. Brian’s heartfelt slides and accompanying song said it all: “The most important lessons I learned were not in a book. They came from my teachers’ hearts and the time they took.”
The reunion alumni were all grateful to Canterbury for hosting such a meaningful event for them. “It was a remarkable weekend,” said Class Ambassador Carlton Tucker ’73. “Thank you for these scrumptious meals, drinks at Housatonic River Brewing, great old pictures of us on buttons, and making us feel very welcomed back at our former school. There were some great stories, memories, and reconnections.”