On May 4, 2023, CA spirit soared on campus. Following a moving installation ceremony for Henry Fairfax, Concord Academy’s 11th head of school, students gathered for treats and lunch before assembling in the Elizabeth B. Hall Chapel, where red and blue flags lined the walls and senior leaders brought their A game to rallying the school.
Cool temperatures and a light drizzle early on did little to dampen the excitement of competition and camaraderie. Students were grouped into 27 Red and Blue subteams and rotated through a series of eight physical challenges spread across the campus. This year’s version of this annual field day tradition returned to its CA roots, with traditional contests including potato-sack and three-legged races, dodgeball, and a bucket brigade. In addition to an inflatable obstacle course, new this year was a recycling relay (students raced to sort ready-to-dispose items into the correct bins), which will surely help the school better meet its waste-reduction targets.
After around two hours of these face-offs, students, faculty, and staff gathered on the upper field for the final showdown: tug-of-war. Grade by grade, students took up the rope and gave it their all. The first win went to Red, the next to Blue, the third—so intense, the rope broke and had to be replaced—to Blue, and finally, the seniors pulled it out for Red. (Then they repeated the feat, just for fun.)
By a schoolwide vote, Dean of Students Grant Hightower P’26 drew the lucky straw to sit in the dunk tank. While he was toweling off, a cheer of Hen-RY, Hen-RY erupted from the students, and the head of school gamely obliged. Then Jay Talwar ’23 and Katie Tran ’23, student head and vice heads of school, responded to the call and took their own turns in the tank.
After the enthusiasm for dunking died down, shivering a bit, Jay closed out the day by encouraging cheers for both colors. The final announcement: The Red team, which had been victorious the previous year, won the overall contest, again earning bragging rights—until next time.