Harker Hall’s Trip to SMS


Over the past weekend, a group of boarders from Harker Hall travelled to Victoria Island to visit girls from St. Margaret’s School (SMS). Girls from SMS visited the boys in Vancouver earlier in the year, so everyone was excited to see old friends again while at the same time meeting new ones.


The boys left Harker Hall at 8 AM on Saturday and made the trip over to the island. They arrived at around 11 and were welcomed by the girls waiting for them, prepared for a fun weekend. Everyone squeezed onto the buses and made their way to a school playground where they spent about an hour playing games and icebreakers as everyone got to know each other.


The next stop on the trip was the paintball war. Everyone was eager to get out in the forest and cover their friends in paint. Students got restless as everyone waited to get sorted out with waivers and equipment but it was worth the wait. There were 3 paintball battles, all with the same objective. There were 5 outposts spread all throughout the battlefield that the teams needed to get to and push a lever towards the side of their team’s logo. This lead to very intense games that consisted of many different strategies ranging from defensive-minded designs, to gung-ho, and full on offence strategies. After 3 games, everyone was exhausted and covered in paint so they wrapped it up and then looked forward to what was in store for the night:the social.


After paintball,the girls got on buses to take them back to their campus and the boys got on other buses that took them to their hotel. There was no time to waste and unpack because the boys had 45 minutes to get suited up and hop back on the buses.


The night started with a dinner, where everyone was able to take some time to connect and interact a bit with each other after trying to splat paintballs on each other just hours earlier.


Afterwards,  everyone made their way to the building that had been decorated with 1980 New York designs and vibes, where the rest of the night would be spent. The social offered lots of different ways for the students to interact. The main attraction was the dance floor, that included a disco ball and a DJ blasting music; however, there were also other places to socialize such as the several couches and tables set up for more personal connections to develop, as well as a room where people could let loose and play twister. Everyone made the most of the night, trying out the different activities and creating friendships with other people as they became more comfortable with each other. Eventually, the night came to a close and the boarders said their goodbyes and headed back to the buses to go to the hotels.


The next morning the Saint’s boys made their was back to the SMS campus to have breakfast with the girls and talk about the previous night. The room buzzed with excitement as everyone became closer and started to get excited for the final day together.


After the students ate, they made our way to the field and got prepared for the colour war. This involved colour powder that will stain clothes as well as people when thrown at them. The colour war was filled with laughter and yelling as people sprinted and shifted trying to not get covered in paint by others looking to hit them. However, no one was able to escape cleanly and by the time it came to an end everyone was covered head to toe in colour powder. Despite being covered in paint, there was no time to relax because everyone had to go change into new clothes and try to get as much paint off of them to get ready to head downtown.


The guys and gals all got on buses that took them downtown for their last few hours. Once they arrived, groups split off in different directions as the girls were excited to show the boys around the city. This involved many different locations such as the city council office and park, the pier, as well as the malls and shops in the heart of the city. Time flew by and all of a sudden it was time for goodbyes. It all felt far too short and the students took so long to say goodbyes that teachers had to start dragging them onto buses in order to not miss the ferry! Fortunately, the boys were able to make it to the ferry on time and get back home safely.


The weekend was a great success. That was proven by the boys raving about the trip to other boarders when they arrived back at Harker Hall. San Lee, a Grade 8 boarder at Harker Hall said, “It was honestly such an enjoyable trip. I don’t even know where all the time went and I can’t wait to see them all again next year and I hope we can have another trip that was just as awesome as this one!” Harker Hall looks forward to hosting SMS again in the fall and to having the chance to reconnect with all the friends that were made this trip.