Special Events in the Boarding Community

Traditions and celebrations spice up campus life and create lasting memories for members of the campus community.

Pre-holiday Dinners: The dining hall prepares a banquet-style feast for the boarders and campus families. Students dress up and eat together in a classy but comfortable atmosphere, reminding each other to be grateful for the opportunities they have been given.
I wish we could stay in the dorms during holidays…that'd be great…but the holiday dinners are always fantastic!
—McDonogh Boarder

Halloween: Everyone dresses up in costumes, and the boarders go trick-or-treating to campus families, ending with a party at the headmaster's house. Earlier in the evening, the younger campus kids trick-or-treat in the dorms, receiving candy and the occasional surprise from the dorm students.

Winter: Students can choose to take part in a variety of festive activities, like caroling, making gingerbread houses, drinking cocoa with their campus families, watching It's a Wonderful Life in the lounge, making cards for their secret elf, and much more.

Snow Days: The dorms are a great place to be on snow days, always a pleasant and welcome surprise. After a tasty, cozy brunch, students may choose their schedule for the day. Many take advantage of the sloping hills to spend hours sledding with the campus kids. Movies are played in the Horn Theatre, and small groups of students can be found all over campus, talking, reading, playing Rock Band, admiring the snow-covered fields, simply relishing the unscheduled and unexpected free time.
I loved the snow days where we would stay in each other's rooms watching episodes of Friends, or pile together in the lounge and watch Real World with all of the girls in the dorm.
—McDonogh Boarder

Evenings at the Headmaster’s House: Every couple of months, Headmaster Charlie Britton and his family open their home to the boarders for good food and time spent together in front of a roaring fireplace. Students spread throughout the living areas and enjoy the company of their peers. They take much-needed time to relax and prepare for the upcoming week.

Boarder Carnival: Near the end of the school year, a carnival is held in the dining hall for the boarders and campus families. Lamborn Hall is filled with moon bounces, arcade games, comfort food, and excited children. Boarders can be found playing games and having fun right alongside the younger campus kids.

Co-ed Events: R-L Leaders plan a couple of events each year to give residents of the girls' and boys' dorms the opportunity to interact. Past activities have included bonfires complete with s'mores, volleyball games, pizza and movie nights, foursquare tournaments, snowball fights, Oriole games, bowling tournaments, trips to a trampoline park and nighttime flashlight tag games.

Boarder Birthdays: Every boarder with a birthday during the school year knows that part of the day's festivities will be a rousing rendition of "Happy Birthday" that evening in the dining hall. Oftentimes, friends will buy a cake and start a small birthday party that will grow to include the whole dorm and the dorm parents, starting after study hall and running until bedtime.

Seniors’ Last Night: On their last night in the dorms, the seniors gather with campus parents in the dorm quad for a bonfire with their friends. A crab feast, music and s'mores accompany the reminiscing as the soon-to-be graduates prepare themselves to leave McDonogh. It is a beautiful way to bring an end to a year spent in the community they have grown to love as a second home.

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McDonogh School | 410.363.0600 |
8600 McDonogh Road | Owings Mills | Maryland | 21117