Students Prepare to Trounce Taft



Francesca Farman-Farmaian ’24 decorates Main Building with “psych” cards.

After a year hiatus, over half of the student body prepares to celebrate their first ever Taft Day.

Each year, students and faculty gather together and participate in a variety of activities the week leading up to Taft Day, known as Spirit Week. The community dresses up in different themed outfits, designs “psych” cards, and decorates the Main Building, all to raise school spirit for Taft Day. 

On Taft Day, Saturday, November 13, student-athletes compete against Taft, and the school with the most victories at the end wins the Hotchkiss-Taft Day competition. Hotchkiss alumni often visit campus on Taft Day to support the school’s sports teams and to contribute to the community spirit. 

Last year, the pandemic posed challenges for the continuation of Spirit Week and Taft Day. By the end of the spring season, improved COVD conditions and the beginning of vaccinations allowed for adjusted Spirit Week celebrations, during which the school competed in a series of alternating away and home games. This year, with most community members fully vaccinated, the school welcomes back most of its traditional Spirit Week activities, including making “psych”  cards, attending pep rallies, as well as building and burning a rhino, Taft’s mascot.  

In addition, Blue & White, the school spirit club, with the help of the administration, decided to move Homecoming, a semi-formal dance, to the night of Taft Day. This year’s Homecoming theme is The Great Gatsby and will take place in the Harris House tent. Throughout the week, students created posters inviting fellow students to the dance as dates. 

For lowerclass students, this will be their first time experiencing a complete Spirit Week and Taft Day. Jacquo Pierre ’24 expressed his excitement for the return of Taft Day: “I [have been] waiting for this day to arrive since my Prep year! I’m [looking forward to] playing in the football game and cheering on other games.” 

Blue & White encourages all students to participate in Spirit Week activities and support the school teams on Taft Day. Jordyn Harrison ’22, a Blue & White head, said, “We should be moving to support our teammates on campus, because a lot of our student body hasn’t seen what a real Taft Day looks like yet, and it’s up to us to show new students and returning alumni the historic and new traditions of Hotchkiss.” Henry Emswiler ’22, another co-head, added, “Let’s make this [Taft Day] one for the books.”