2017-2018 Photo Essays

Library Olympics 2018 (Students)

In honor of the Winter Olympics currently ongoing in PyeongChang, kindergartners and students from grades five and six participated in the Library Olympics on Wednesday, February 21. Events included the Book Walk, matching authors to famous book covers, sorting fiction and non-fiction books, and sorting books alphabetically by the author's last name. At the end of the games, each kindergartner was presented with a medal by their Middle School partner.

McDonogh Dances 2018 (Students)

McDonogh Dances 2018, the annual showcase of Upper School dance talent, thrilled audiences over the weekend of February 10 and 11.  The dances, choreographed by the Head of McDonogh’s Dance Program Ilona Kessell, as well as students and faculty, featured a variety of styles, which were enhanced by the lighting, sound, and costumes. Bravo!

PK Shares Their Love With Pups (Students)

Humans weren’t the only ones feeling the prekindergartners’ love on Valentine’s Day, Wednesday, February 14. After meeting one of the shelter dogs from BARCS (Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter), the children put their culinary skills to work lovingly making delicious dog treats.

Mushu the Micro Pig (Students)

Meet Mushu the micro pig, the newest member of the McDonogh community. Named after the precocious dragon in Disney’s Mulan, Mushu joined the Lower School STEM department in January and has already become an invaluable partner in enhancing student learning.

NYC Alumni Connect at Events (Students)

A group of McDonogh alumni based in New York City, braved sleet and freezing rain to attend a luncheon at the Harvard Club in Midtown Manhattan on Wednesday, February 7. The event, an opportunity to say “thank you” to donors, included a special presentation by Jon Aaron '72 about how McDonogh's past is shaping its future. In the evening, David '82 and Hope Rothschild graciously hosted a reception for McDonogh alumni at their home on the Upper East Side. Guests enjoyed the evening of camaraderie and the opportunity to share with others what they hold dear about the school.

McDonogh Goes to Disney World (Students)

The McDonogh Singers, led by Middle School Choral Director Suzanne Eldridge, traveled to Orlando, Florida on February 3 to perform and take workshops at Disney World. The trip included two workshops led by Disney performers, choreographers, and actors. The first workshop, "Disney Sings," gave students the ability to record a vocal track to Disney's The Lion King. The second workshop, "Disney's Broadway Magic," took students through the process of producing a Disney musical, from auditioning, to casting, to staging a scene and song from Tangled. Additionally, the Singers showcased their talent in a 30-minute performance for an international audience at Disney Springs.

PK Enjoys a Delicious Treat (Students)

Prekindergartners were treated to a visit from Executive Chef Thomas Devine of Linwoods Restaurant on Wednesday, January 31. Gathered in the kitchen of the Esther Ann Brown Adler Prekindergarten, Chef Tom taught the junior chefs-in-training the many different ways to prepare the butternut squash grown at Roots Farm, including adding it to brownies and ice cream! This was one time when no one complained about eating their vegetables. After devouring their tasty treats, the PK gave the Chef a thumbs up and thanked him for sharing with their class. 

Sole Hope Party (Students)

On Friday, January 26, several students from the Upper and Middle Schools gathered in the 1873 Room to assemble shoe kits for the Sole Hope project. Leading up to the party, students collected donations of old jeans from the McDonogh community. After collecting hundreds of pairs of jeans, the students worked together to cut them into the patterns needed to turn them into shoes. They assembled 68 shoe kits so far, and are planning to hold another shoe making party in the near future. 


Lend Me a Tenor (Students)

The student production of Ken Ludwig's Lend Me a Tenor premieres tonight, January 26 at 7:00 p.m, with a second performance tomorrow night, January 27 also at 7:00 p.m. in the Klein Lyceum. A sensation on Broadway and in London's West End, this madcap, screwball comedy is guaranteed to leave audiences teary-eyed with laughter. The show is directed by Jack O. '18 with the assistance of Cormac C. '18. Ellie S. '18 is the stage manager.

Negro League Presentation (Students)

On Friday, January 19, the fifth-grade had an opportunity to meet with former Negro League players and to tour an exhibit of memorabilia outlining the League’s history. Negro League historians and family members of players also spoke to the class about their place in history and their efforts to gain recognition.

Tuttle Gallery: Historic Coverings (Students)

Artists and educators Olivia Robinson and Diane Kuthy will display their collaborative research and quilt project, Historic Coverings: Interrogating the Culture of Whiteness, in the Tuttle Gallery from Wednesday, January 10 through Tuesday, February 20. The project explores the visual social culture in the United States during the 1850s as it pertains to Baltimore/Maryland history and was inspired by Baltimore Album Quilts of the late 1840s. The work is the second in a series that focuses on images and narratives from a specific period of U.S. history, using quilting traditions popular at the time.

Model UN 2018 Columbia University Trip (Students)

McDonogh's 16-member Model UN delegation traveled to Columbia University in New York City from January 11 to 14 for the annual conference simulating the work of the United Nations. During the weekend, McDonogh delegates participated in a variety of committees of topics including Brexit and its Aftermath, Lebanese Independence, the Kurdish Question, the Soviet Politburo, and Taft and George H. W. Bush's Presidential Councils.

Lower School Honors Dr. King with a Day of Service (Students)

Close to 200 Lower School students and their families participated in the Martin Luther King, Jr. Morning of Service on Monday, January 15. Instead of taking the "day off," students and their families used the holiday to honor Dr. King and his legacy by serving others. The volunteers worked together to make craft kits for the children staying at the Ronald McDonald House, assemble sandwiches for the Corpus Christi soup kitchen, create artwork for the residents at Stella Maris, package wash kits for the recipients of Meals on Wheels, tie blankets for the animals at the ASPCA, make pans of lasagna for the elderly residents of Roland Heights Tower, and decorate cards for sick children and enlisted men and women.

Holiday Project Delivers Love (Students)

The morning of December 19 was sunny and holiday spirit was everywhere on campus as students from all three divisions brought boxes of toys, books, and clothes out of buildings and into the trucks heading for St. Gregory the Great Church. The gifts will be distributed to 131 families including 377 children and Director of Character and Service Bridget Collins is thankful. "The Holiday Project requires a lot of hard work and time from the whole community, and I am grateful for your participation. There has been so much loss caused by natural disasters and senseless acts of violence this year. It is easy to feel overwhelmed and powerless. But, I believe that we each have the power to bring light to this world and it starts with simple acts of love."

Watch the video!

No Worries at the Holiday Assembly (Students)

Lion cub Simba just wants to be king, but his Uncle Scar has other ideas. While Simba is sleeping, Scar steals the pride's ancient (and gift-wrapped!) box of Holiday Spirit and has it destroyed. When Simba awakens to discover its absence, Scar is quick to convince him that exile is his only course of action and Simba leaves his home full of misery. Luckily, he makes the acquaintance of Timon the meercat and Pumba the warthog and they introduce him to their philosophy of "Hakuna Matata" or "no worries." Joyful performances by 16 of McDonogh’s instrumental, dance, and choral groups raise his spirits, and when Rafiki the shaman and his beloved Nala find him, he is ready to return to Pride Rock, face his uncle, and learn that true Holiday Spirit is not found in a box but in our hearts. 

Watch some of the fun!

Alumni Enjoy Festive Holiday Luncheon (Alumni)

Alumni representing seven decades filled the Aarsand 1873 Room with sounds of revelry and camaraderie during the annual Orange & Black Holiday Luncheon on Friday, December 8. After a performance by the Lower School Choir, the Gentleman Songsters, and the Women of Note the alumni guests shared memories and enjoyed holiday greetings from Headmaster Charlie Britton, who spoke about gratitude and the wonderful people who make up the McDonogh Family.

Young Alumni Enjoy Feast of Events (Students)

The Alumni Association hosted a feast of gatherings that attracted record crowds of young alumni during the Thanksgiving Break. The weekend of catching up with fellow Eagles began on November 22, with a Wednesday night Happy Hour for the classes of 2004 to 2015, at Bond Street Social in Fells Point. On Thanksgiving morning, younger young alumni and members of the senior class returned to Paterakis Hall for a Pancake Breakfast served by Headmaster Charlie Britton and attended by several faculty members. Friday was about fun and fitness as girls’ soccer players and boys’ lacrosse players held their annual odds vs. evens alumni games in the morning. Later that afternoon, members of the Class of 2011 hosted the Third Annual Will Hauver '11 Memorial Paddle Tennis Tournament at the L'Hirondelle Club.

Lower School Grandparents Experience Joy (Students)

The Lower School shared the joy found at McDonogh, with those they are most thankful for, at Grandparent's Day on Tuesday, November 21. Together, they read stories, worked on puzzles, and conducted interviews, which allowed the two generations to learn more about each other. Along with classroom visits, grandparents and other special guests enjoyed performances by the children on stage in the Horn Theatre. Watch the performance by PK to first grade here and grades two, three, and four here.

Roots Volunteers Put Farm to Bed (Students)

An enthusiastic crowd of parent, student, and alumni volunteers cropped up at Roots, bright and early on Saturday, November 18, to help put the farm to bed for the winter. They pulled up the remnants of the vegetables and flowers, cleaned out the gardens, and removed the signs, bedding liners, and irrigation channels. After hours of hard work, the volunteer crew brought their hearty appetites to the barn where they enjoyed a potluck lunch.

Blankets Provide Hope and Courage (Students)

Empathy was the message of the afternoon during the Blankets of Hope chapel on Friday, November 17. The chapel was the culmination of a third grade project that began with the summer reading assignment, The Shoeshine Girl by Clyde Robert Bulla. Like the girl in the story, the third grade held a shoeshine stand to raise money to buy the fleece material for their Blankets of Hope. During the chapel, students reflected on hope and courage and then presented the blankets to members of the McDonogh Family who are fighting cancer. They also contributed 40 hand-tied blankets to the Red Devils, an organization that provides support to breast cancer patients. See more here.

Barn Bash Fun (Students)

The sixth grade class boot-scooted to Roots for a Barn Bash social on Friday, November 3, following the Spirit Parade and Pep Rally. When the Eagle mascot greeted the class, the party began. The students kicked up their heels to the sounds provided by DJ James and enjoyed a photo booth, ball games, and the corn maze. The Oriole Bird even made an appearance and posed for pictures. By the end of the afternoon, many new friendships had been cultivated by the class.

102nd McDonogh Gilman Football Game (Students)

The 102nd McDonogh vs. Gilman football game brought the community together for a common goal—camaraderie in support of the Eagles. After the school-wide Spirit Parade on Friday, November 3, alumni from both schools gathered at Ryan’s Daughter in Belvedere Square for happy hour. The following afternoon, alumni, fans, and families arrived at John McDonogh Stadium for fun, food trucks, and of course, football. Before kickoff, senior players, cheerleaders, and announcers were recognized. Then, the Eagles got to work battling the Greyhounds. Fans stuck it out to the bitter end when the rain began to fall and Headmaster Charlie Britton handed the Price Trophy over to Gilman…but just for the year.

Spirit Parade Puts Pep In Our Step (Students)

McDonogh’s campus was awash in orange and black for the annual Spirit Parade and Pep Rally on Friday, November 3. An enthusiastic student body, faculty, staff, coaches, and friends worked their way from Tagart Chapel to the Rollins-Luetkemeyer Athletic Center in the one-of-a-kind, double self-enveloping Spirit Parade, where everyone is a participant. The Pep Rally included cheers, a step-squad performance, fight songs played by the Middle School Marching Band, and words of inspiration for the football team as they faced Gilman for the 102nd time. See video coverage here.

Halloween at McDonogh a Treat (Students)

From the moment students stepped off the buses and were greeted by a Minion mummy (Mr. Britton) to the end of the day and the Lower School parade, the clever and creative Halloween costumes worn by students, faculty, and staff delighted and amazed. Enjoy the Lower School Halloween assembly and parade here.

Contributing photographers: Legacy Yearbook Staff

Bay Trip Wonders (Students)

Eighth graders experienced the wonders of the Chesapeake Bay on the annual trip with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation to Fox Island, Port Isobel, and the Karen Noonan Environmental Education Center. The signature Middle School event teaches students about the ecology and economics of the Chesapeake and provides opportunities for them to learn, work, and play together as a team. Over the three days on the bay in mid-October, eighth graders stepped out of their comfort zones and fished, crabbed, raced through a mud maze, took a moonless night hike, prepared meals, and cleaned up after each other.

Eagles Flock to the Terps (Students)

Headmaster Charlie Britton and beloved faculty members traveled south on I-95 for an alumni dinner with current and former College Park students on Thursday, October 26. Britton updated the lively group on campus life, Head of Upper School Merritt Livermore spoke about the upcoming addition of an Innovation Center, Co-Athletic Director Mickey Deegan reported on athletic teams, Jim Tsouvalos commented on the growth of the Wellness Program, and Laddie Levy ’63 encouraged all McDonogh alumni to stay connected with each other and with McDonogh. Guests appreciated the opportunity to catch up with each other and with the school.

Supper & Speaker Series (Students)

Self-driving 18-wheelers? A bot that can defend a parking ticket on your behalf?

Guests attending the premiere Supper & Speaker Series on October 19 heard from nationally recognized author, speaker, and consultant Tom Hood '77 on the exponential rate of growth of technology in our world. After an interesting and thought-provoking presentation, Tom led an interactive dialogue with guests about how we can adapt to a world that is volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous (VUCA).

Students Create Cozy Blankets of Hope (Students)

An amazing assortment of plain and patterned fleece fabric was transformed into cozy “blankets of hope” by students in third and seventh grade on Wednesday, October 18. In November, the blankets will be donated to the Red Devils, an organization that supports the needs of cancer patients and their families. The blanket material was purchased with money the third grade students earned by shining shoes, as a follow-up to reading the novel Shoeshine Girl by Clyde Robert Bulla.

The Addams Family Delights (Students)

The award-winning McDonogh Theatre Lab delighted audiences and earned rave reviews with their production of The Addams Family, October 20-22. The devilishly delightful musical comedy featured a cast of Upper School actors, singers, and dancers who protrayed favorite Addams family members including Gomez, Morticia, Wednesday, Pugsley, Fester, Grandma, Lurch and all their ghostly ancestors. Go behind the scenes in the Horn Theatre and see how Jack A. was transformed into Uncle Fester in the video: Becoming Uncle Fester.

Perfect Afternoon for Pumpkin Picking (Students)

Dressed for a fall afternoon on the farm, the kindergarten classes took a hayride to Roots on Monday, October 16 to pick the pumpkins they planted in June. Each student chose two pumpkins: one to take home and another, which they will use to make pies and bread in the culinary classroom. The annual outing also included a walk through the corn maze, apple eating, and a visit with the hens.

 Contributing photographer: Leslie Finkelstein

Farm Chores Benefit Many (Students)

When the second and ninth grades met at Roots Farm on Wednesday, October 11, they were prepared to help with chores, but little did they know how many different lives they would touch. Working together, some students harvested “imperfect” pumpkins, beans, and peppers, while others cut fresh flowers. The pumpkins will be enjoyed by the pigs at Whistle Pig Hollow Farm, the beans will be served in the dining hall, the peppers are being donated to the Maryland Food Bank, and the flowers have become centerpieces on the tables at Blakehurst, a retirement community in Towson. When they weren’t harvesting, students learned about the food bank and made cards filled with well wishes.

Water Walk Leads to Empathy (Students)

The sixth grade Water Walk on Thursday, October 5 simulated what many around the world must do every day to access water. The students walked from Finney Building to the pond where they filled gallon jugs. Then, they carried their containers to Roots Farm where they watered the fruit trees in the orchard, making sure nothing went to waste. The one-mile walk gave the students a deeper understanding of the global water crisis and the impact their fundraiser for water filtration kits will have on schools in Uganda. The sixth grade effort will result in 18 kits! The third grade supported the effort and joined them for the walk. Click here for background and pictures from the September Day of Water, the kick off to the sixth grade’s service learning initiative. 

Contributing photographers: Elizabeth Irvine and Katie M., Legacy staff

Founder's Day Tradition (Students)

A sprinkle of raindrops fell as the school community gathered in silence around the John McDonogh Monument for the 143rd Founder’s Day ceremony on Friday, October 6. Just as the ceremony began, the sun broke through and the Lower School Choir set the tone for the morning singing Homeward Bound. Director of Character and Service Bridget Collins ‘90 and Headmaster Charlie Britton continued the theme of “home” in remarks, as they shared the origins of the day. In keeping with tradition, after honoring John McDonogh by planting flowers at his grave, the names of recently deceased members of the McDonogh Family were read. Alumni Association representatives placed individual flowers at the base of the monument and a bell in Tagart Memorial Chapel tolled for each person.

Alumni Raise the Barre (Students)

Pure sweat and pure fun were happening at Pure Barre in Roland Park on Tuesday, October 3 when alumni enjoyed an hour-long fitness session hosted by McDonogh's Young Alumni and Social Committees. Tastings of Sunset Raw Juice Bar drinks, owned by Gerrard Sheppard '08, and Pure Chocolate by Jinji, owned by Jinji Fraser '01, followed the workout. Katye McNulty Jorgensen '07 also brought Rodan + Fields skin care products for guests to sample.

Visiting Authors Share Stories (Students)

Lower schoolers enjoyed the opportunity to meet with two visiting authors in late September. Prompted by correspondence with second grader Paula C., children's author Wendy (W.C.) Mack, paid a surprise visit to Paula’s class, where she spoke about her three-book series including Athlete vs. Mathlete. The next day, author/illustrator Javaka Steptoe held workshops with students in grades two through four. The award-winning author of Radiant Child: The Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, connected with his audience through humor, creativity, and expression. Both Mack and Steptoe shared their journey of becoming an author and encouraged the students to express themselves through their writing.

Juniors Receive McD Pins (Students)

McDonogh’s Class of 2019 officially became upperclassmen at the annual Junior Pin Ceremony on Sunday, October 1. The evening began with a casual advisory dinner in Paterakis Dining Hall, after which students spilled onto the Ritter Terrace for photographs. The junior class then processed into the Ceres M. Horn Theatre for the ceremony, which included remarks from Junior Class Dean Libet Ottinger and class officers Hannah F. and Ethan C., followed by a slideshow of memories created by Anna J. and Abby F. The highlight of the evening was the presentation of gold McD lapel pins by Head of Upper School Merritt Livermore and Headmaster Charlie Britton. At the conclusion of the evening, Britton spoke about the meaning of the pin and encouraged the students to wear theirs with pride.

Something for Everyone at Club Fair (Students)

There was a common theme running through annual Upper School Club Fair on Thursday, September 28 and it wasn’t just the sweet treats available at most booths. The upper schoolers promoting the various clubs and activities on the Ritter Terrace did so with unabashed enthusiasm. With more than 40 offerings, there was something for everyone.

Eagles Fly to London (Students)

McDonogh made history on Saturday, September 23 when it hosted its first-ever international reception. An impressive crowd of alumni, parents, alumni parents, grandparents, and friends representing England, Scotland, Germany, and the United States, gathered at 67 Pall Mall in the St. James area of London for great wine and conversation. Director of Alumni Relations Jen Little gave the crowd an update on McDonogh and all the exciting happenings on campus.

Fall Fun at Honey of a JamFest (Students)

A record number of McDonogh families started the weekend with fun and friendship at the back-to-school Honey of a Jamfest on September 29! The festivities started at Roots Farm with pumpkin and flower picking, face painting, farm games, wool spinning, cider making, a corn maze, pumpkin chunkin, and more. As the sun set, everyone headed to the Rosenberg Campus Green for more fun and games, a picnic dinner, and music by the Klassix!

Contributing photographers: Legacy Yearbook Staff

Day of Water Enlightens (Students)

The second annual Day of Water on Friday, September 15 was the kick off of the sixth grade’s service learning initiative. After learning about the global water crisis, students were introduced to the Ugandan Water Project and an effort to raise funds to purchase Sawyer water filters and rainwater collection tanks for schools in the African nation. On Thursday, October 5 the students will participate in a Water Walk through campus, carrying gallon jugs filled with water, to simulate what Ugandan children do on a daily basis.

Shiny Shoes and Happy Feet (Students)

All kinds of shoes walked into the Kelly Center on Thursday and Friday, September 14 and 15 and made their way to the third grade’s Shoeshine Stand. The students dusted, polished, and buffed hundreds of shoes and graciously accepted tips. The money will be used to buy fleece for blankets that the students will make and donate to The Red Devils, an organization that supports breast cancer patients. The annual project, inspired by the book “The Shoeshine Girl” by Clyde Robert Bulla, began in 2009.

Love Your Selfie (Students)

Upper School parents got a glimpse of the fun and camaraderie at McDonogh in the annual Back-to-School night “Love Your Selfie” slideshow on Thursday, September 14. Enjoy!

Signature Society Soiree (Students)

The Signature Society Soiree, honoring The McDonogh Fund’s most generous donors and volunteers, was held under a tent on the Rosenberg Campus Green on Friday, September 8. The occasion was also an opportunity to kick off the 2017-2018 McDonogh Fund campaign. Headmaster Charlie Britton thanked guests for their support in reaching the school’s 2016-2017 goal of $2.3 million and provided examples of the many ways students have benefited from the fund.

Celebrating Reading at Aquapalooza (Students)

Popsicles and bubbles were a welcome addition to a chilly Aquapalooza 2017 on Friday, September 8. But the cool temperatures did not stop children in PK to fourth grade from sliding down the hills and running through sprinklers. The annual back-to-school event is a celebration of the reading that took place over the summer. Joining in the fun was the administrative team dressed as Minions. Watch all the fun here.

Alumni Share Stories at OC's Fish Tales (Students)

Alumni, parents of alumni, and grandparents enjoyed a sunny evening in the sand at a reception on Thursday, September 7 at Fish Tales in Ocean City. Hosted by owner and McDonogh alumnus, Shawn Harman '78, Fish Tales provided the perfect venue for guests to enjoy the last days of summer while sharing their memories of McDonogh.

2017 Legacy is Here (Students)

Upper schoolers could not wait to get their hands on a copy of the 2017 Legacy, "Back to the Basics," when it was distributed on Friday, September 8. The Ritter Terrace proved to be the ideal spot to pore over the pages of the yearbook and to have it signed. Congratulations to the Legacy staff on another beautiful job.

School Year Kicks-Off at Convocation (Students)

Members of the Classes of 2018 and 2030 strolled hand-in-hand down Chapel Hill to Childs Memorial Terrace for the annual Opening Convocation on Wednesday, August 30. After words of welcome from student representatives from each division, Headmaster Charlie Britton officially opened the school year by ringing a traditional school bell. Watch Convocation here.

Sunny Smiles on Rainy First Day (Students)

Rain didn’t dampen the spirit or wash away the excitement of the first day of school on Tuesday, August 29. Under colorful umbrellas, students, faculty, and staff greeted each other with hugs and high-fives and then quickly moved on to their classrooms for the start of the new year.

Afternoon Eclipsed by Nature (Students)

No matter where you were and what you were doing on the afternoon of Monday, August 21, chances are that it was overshadowed by the solar eclipse. The Path of Totality stretched from Oregon to South Carolina and members of the McDonogh family were sprinkled along the entire route. Across the country and on campus, students, faculty, alumni, and friends paused, put on their special solar eclipse glasses, and watched as the moon passed between the earth and the sun. The experience was thrilling. Thanks to everyone who shared their pictures of this phenomenal event!

Rain Doesn't Dampen O's Outing (Students)

Thunder, lightning, and several rain delays didn't dampen the enthusiasm on Thursday, August 3 for McDonogh's Alumni Night at Camden Yards. Guests enjoyed an extended happy hour at Frank & Nic's then most ventured into the stadium to finally watch the Orioles battle from behind against the Detroit Tigers.

Summer Programs Fun (Students)

As the month of July comes to an end, six sensational weeks of McDonogh Summer Programs are also winding down. This summer, more than 2,500 children from age 4 to 17 participated in our day camps, sports camps, arts and educational programs where they discovered new skills, made new friends, and had tons of fun. Thanks to our amazing counselors and CITs for making it all happen. Registration for 2018 Summer Programs will be available in November.


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