Snowball holds biannual retreat

Holds two staff trainings before YMCA camp.


Riley Dunlavy ‘23 (left) Annaliese Dorchinecz ‘24 (center) and Riley McCarthy ‘24 (right) have fun doing an activity at the weekly Snowball meetings (Ludden/LION).

George Ross, Reporter

From Nov. 4 to Nov. 6, Snowball went on their annual fall trip. Roughly 150 students–all new to the retreat, besides the staff members–traveled to Camp MacLean, a YMCA camp located in Burlington, Wisc. It was an activity-filled weekend with many team bonding activities, a theater show, speakers, and food.

For the senior staff members, however, this was their second-to-last Snowball retreat. But, like every year, they try to have fun before their last retreat, co-director of theater Phoebe Lettiere ‘23 said.

“I [was] beyond excited,” Lettiere said. “I [tried] hard to not think about it being my last fall snowball.”

In order to prepare for the fall retreat, Snowball hosted two unique staff events. During these events, they had games and activities, but a unique component was changing the preparations for the upcoming year. The two events were the summer lock-in and “Snowball for Snowball” before the retreat.

The summer night lock-in was from June 1 to June 2. The lock-in was created and hosted to bring the new staff and theater members closer together for this upcoming year. It was held from 3 p.m. in NC room 115 to 1 p.m. the next day. The day started out with team building games, then transitioned to a paper clip trading game. One of the students that participated was Annaliese Dorchinecz ‘24

“We did a challenge in teams where you had to start with a paperclip and keep trading up,” Dorchinecz said. “The group that ended with the coolest thing won. We ended up with a snowboard, and had a record player at one point, but the group that won ended with a mini-bounce house.”

The participants then spent the rest of the night inside NC. The next day, they headed to Feed My Starving Children to volunteer and then went home.

The other event was held on Sept. 28 from 6 p.m. to 12 a.m. called “Snowball for Snowball.” 

In three separate groups, consisting of 15 people in each one, the students talked about their personal stories. They also talked about each other’s mental health, and checked in to make sure everyone was doing well. Another thing they talked about outside of their feelings was preparations for the fall retreat.

“I really liked [Snowball for Snowball] because it was an opportunity to get to know each other better and make deeper connections,” Emma Schultz ‘24 said. “It is important to have the time to talk [below] the surface level.” 

One of the main activities during Snowball for Snowball is senior speeches to the younger students in order to prepare them for leadership roles.

“After our speeches we went into small groups and we talked,” Lettiere said. “It was so incredible to have that experience with the new leaders because it definitely brought us all closer together.” 

There will be one more retreat this school year for Snowball in the spring. Snowball applications for the spring retreat start Jan. 29.