Wishes Do Come True!

The senior rugby team was on show this week with an important league game versus Claremont. They were ‘wishing’ for a win after a few defeats to start the season. Losing several players to injury has made it difficult to find continuity with players constantly moving around to fill in different positions. They knew they would be in tough against an enthusiastic Claremont side and were down for nearly the entire game, that is until the last 10 minutes when the rally began. With two quick tries they found themselves down by three points with only a couple minutes left. Quick darting runs by Bolton’s Adam Liu helped get SMUS within striking distance of the goal line and eventually they put in a try with zero time left on the clock. It was a thrilling comeback and a great first win of the season for the team. Their ‘wish’ had come true.

The half time speech that seemed to fire them up for a much inproved second half performance

The wild west coast is not known for its warmth and sunny skies. Vancouver Island’s west coast is commonly labelled as the graveyard of the pacific and the Juan de Fuca trail’s rugged coastline and stormy wet weather is often sought by hikers wanting to get a true west coast experience. Harun and LeRoy were among a group of SMUS students braving the elemets and ‘wishing’ for bright skies and calm seas for the 40 km hike. One wish there was no point in asking for would be a dry trail, as that is just not a possibility on the “Wet” Coast! They certainly got what they ‘wished’ from the weather and managed to capture an amazing sunset as well.

Mr. Danskin ran a Saturday activity this weekend that was a walking food tour of some of his favourite spots. Rentaro, Lucas, Wataru and Kenneth were the Bolton students who came along for the journey and it was a lovely little outing. With ten people in the group and mostly small resaurants, they were all ‘wishing’ for a chance to find seating. The first stop was La Taqueria where they each sampled a taco of their choice. The tacos were eaten so fast there wasn’t even time to get a picture of everyone with their food!

Next we ventured down to China Town and on the way managed to take in an anti-COVID mandates protest. A few students were a little surprised by the potest given the relative extent of restrictions and expectations in many other parts of the world.

With all the flags, it looked more like a Canada Day parade than an anti COVID mandate protest!

We arrived at Bao and managed to find seats for all of us – another ‘wish’ fullfilled! The blossoms were in full effect and the bao buns were a hit. We were left wanting to come back again to sample more of the different kinds of bao buns available on the menu.

Next stop was Dumpling Drop for a round of Pork Belly dumplings that are always a hit. They were so good, everyone ‘wished’ for more dumplings and there was actually a mistake which resulted in the group getting one extra dish of dumplings!

With one location left and a dessert stop at that, the crew was excited to top things off with some ice cream from Chocolate Favoris. Seeing as it is right in the hub of downtown excitement, they were wishing for the line to be small and once again lucked out. Just after they arrived, there was a line out the door! They also ‘wished’ to find more space in their stomachs for the chocolate dipped icecream and thankfully they all managed 🙂

While every location was wonderful, after a vote for the favourite, Bao was the overall winner!

The final ‘wish’ was made by Teigan who ‘wished’ for everyone to sing him happy birthday; perhaps he should’ve included a specific quality level with that wish!

Bolton in Fine House Games Form

It was a solid performance by Bolton in last weekend’s house games. The results have pushed them into a solid lead of more than 40 points over their competitors. Badminton was the sporting activity, while playing card tower building and origami frog racing were the team challenges. The badminton courts were full of excitment as the juniors and seniors each battled it out in doubles action. Bolton was narrowly edged out by Barnacle for the overall Badminton win, but they put forth a tremedous effort.

In the team challenges, they were partnered with their Timmis House companions and the combination was unstoppable! Together they made and hopped over 50 origami frogs and built a card tower more than 30 centimeters taller than the next closest team. Amazing!

Stay tuned for the next house games update in a few weeks time as Bolton tries to maintain their lead and bring home this year’s House Cup!

We also wanted to add some more pictures from the Leadership retreat last week. Below you will see each of the 11’s with their chosen object to represent their leadership. The stories to accompany the items were wonderful and full of humour. There is no doubt that next year’s group is going to be an incredible team!

Seb just hanging out….
Look at the teamwork! This crew will be unstoppable next year!

In this community, we stand by each other!

It was been a busy weekend with checking travel details, last minute holiday shopping, and sporting events. There is much anticipation going into our final week of school and a noticeable countdown is on!

Student run daily message board

During the school week, Ryan W enjoyed some popcorn provided by his awesome homeroom teachers Mr. Steed and Sra. Calderon.

Ryan approves!

Ernest has been a duty machine this weekend, as he was first on Friday night then kindly offered to cover for Malte who had a volleyball game Saturday. He was right on time Saturday morning to greet everyone as they checked in between 10-10:30 AM.

Ernest dutifully on duty!

Many of the Bolton boys were either competing in volleyball provincials or various basketball tournaments and games. Below, you can see Oscar, LeRoy, Leo, Simon, Malik, Malte and Chris hard at work!

Congratulations to LeRoy who was named 1st Team Allstar at his basketball tournament this weekend!

What a trophy it is, too!

Bolton is hosting this weekend’s boarders chapel and everyone, who didn’t have a sporting conflict, got together in the chapel for some practice first. After some very quiet initial singing of “Stand By Me”, Mr. Fryer was able to coax out some volume and it was sounding great.

Morning practice before Sunday’s chapel service hosted by Bolton

There is a large contingent of people who support our students in boarding and every year, and the Winter Break marks a nice opportunity to show our thanks. Students will be populating a large set of cards with messages and the cards will be delivered in the coming days. There is an impressive array of recipients, from Laundry Services, Campus Security, Grounds and Maintenance, Directors of the school, Boarding Support Staff, Admissions, and many more who make the lives of our students more enjoyable and help keep things running smoothly.

Holiday greeting cards from Bolton and Timmis

We had some super low temperatures this week as well, with this morning being a particularly frosty one!

On Saturday evening, we hosted a FIFA tournament in the common room. After a few upsets and dramatic victories along the way, Louis eventually took home the title. For Seb, Josh, Harun and Dylan who participated but came up a tad short, consolation came in the form of pepperoni pizza on the house.

And finally, after much anticipation, a week delay, and some intense practicing, the Bolton chapel finally arrived. Built around the theme of community, it truly required a full house effort. Here is the final practice run through of the song…

Final run through… looking, and sounding, good!

Without a doubt, one of the best chapels in recent memory with the video (edited, filmed and produced by Jason) getting special mention from reverend Fletcher and Mr. Driscoll. The Reverend was quoted as saying” that was the best video I have seen in 16 years of chapels!” Wow! Special shout out to Leo and Simon for their speeches, Savo, Marcus, Josh, Seb, and Adam K for their contributions in various forms. Louis and Adam L were especially brave to lead the song and the enthusiasm of every boy in the singing was outstanding! A special thank you to Mr. Butterfield (a former Bolton houseparent) for his musical prowess!

Some of the Bolton welcome committee

Here is the chapel in various pieces, but in the order it was presented.

Mr. Butterfield is a one-man-band!
Opening Breaths and our reflection question

The best movie ever!

The Song, Leo’s speech and closing breaths

A worthy cheer to finish it all off!


And finally, after 4 months of outstanding leadership, amazing contributions to the Bolton, boarding and SMUS community, positive energy, support and just general awesomeness, Adam L was awarded his boarding colours, the highest honour for a member of the boarding community. It was well deserved and we would like to thank Adam for all of his work in making this such a great year.

Congratulations Adam!

This will be our last post until the new year. We wish all of the Bolton boys and their families a very safe and restful holiday season. We are so proud of all they have accomplished in the 4 months that we have been back and look forward to more amazing things in 2022. Thank you to all our families for their support and encouragement, we couldn’t do it without you.

October Arrives

With September behind us, conversations have now shifted to giving thanks, turkey feasts, Halloween costumes, keeping warm, amazing new friendships, and staying on top of studies and co-curricular commitments! There has also been plenty of time for fun and this weekend saw students organize a well attended open mic night in the Sun Centre Student Commons. There were some notable performances and the Bolton crew did not disappoint!

Mr. Kim took the grade 9 crew to Farmer Jim’s this weekend. There was plenty of work to do and the guys collected apples and moved a lot of mulch to help keep the soil happy. The horses and sheep were also kept happy with apples and sunflowers! Always the educator, Farmer Jim took plenty of time to share his wisdom and all the hard work was rewarded with some fresh pressed apple juice!

A few of the guys managed to get a little bonding time in over Playstation 5’s FIFA 2022. The graphics really are incredible and plenty of hoots and hollars were heard from the common room as they battled it out on the big screen.

While some of the soccer may have been virtual, the playing fields were abuzz with rugby. Adam L. showed off his “silky” drop kick skills to the grade 9s before that saw action in a tournament that featured independant schools from the island and lower mainland.

Grade 9 Sevens Rugby Team

September 30th is National Truth and Reconciliation Day and students spent a half day at school learning more about Canada’s Indigenous history and what truth and reconciliation means. Read more about how our time was spent in the link below:

Subaig was helping sell orange shirts – a symbol of National Truth and Reconciliation Day

A few candid moments from around the campus help complete the blog this week. Stay tuned for more next weekend, which is our Thanksgiving long weekend and will see a few of the Bolton crew head home for the holidays, while the rest will be here taking a well earned break from regular school expectations and commitments.

It has been great to see friendships solidifying and connections being made. We’ll leave you with a great shot of some of the Bolton folks, grades 9-12 all represented, enjoying Ramen night together in the Sun Centre.

Hello from Mr. Danskin, Ms. Hanna, & Chips!

We are excited to be starting our seventh year working in the Bolton/Timmis building. This is Mr. Danskin’s ninth year in boarding and Ms. Hanna’s eighth. We feel very fortunate to be part of such an amazing community and are looking forward to the year ahead. The return to mixed grades in boarding houses will be great and we look forward to getting to know the many new students joining Bolton this year. 

Ms. Hanna currently teaches in the Victoria School District as a learning support teacher. Mr. Danskin teaches Humanities and PE at the SMUS Middle School and coaches a variety of sports at the Middle School as well as helps out with rugby at the Senior School. Our dog Chips will once again be a fixture on the front steps during our duty shifts, and when not on duty he keeps himself busy chasing flies and digging holes in our backyard.

In our spare time, we love outdoor adventures and cooking delicious meals. We’re excited to share our experiences and passions with the boarding community and look forward to another great year!

Fun @ MUN

Several Grade 11 boys were involved in this weekend’s Model United Nations (MUN) session on campus.

Model UN is a popular activity for those interested in learning more about how the UN operates. Hundreds of thousands of students worldwide take part every year at all educational levels. Many of today’s leaders in law, government, business and the arts – including at the UN itself – participated in Model UN as students. 

The United Nations MUN Programme aims to build and maintain strong links between the UN and MUN participants across the globe. It does that through guides and workshops, which teach students how to make their simulations more accurate; by visiting Model UN conferences and sharing firsthand knowledge of what the actual UN is like; and through encouraging Model UN clubs to take real action to support UN values and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

In particular, some of the discussions at this weekend’s event surrounded globalization and internationalization, mostly through the lens of various transnational organizations, all represented by SMUS students.

I had the opportunity to sit down with Ryan, and ask him a few questions about his experience at MUN.

Ryan after his weekend organizing the SMUS Model UN.

Mr. Fryer: Hi Ryan, thanks for chatting with me and congrats on, what sounds like, a successful conference this weekend! Can you tell me a little bit about your role this weekend?

Ryan: Yes, thanks for having me here. The conference itself was comprised of three committees: Dylan (from Bolton) – was the Director for the World Health Organization (WHO), Fa – was the Director of the UN Human Rights Council, and I ran the Ad Hoc Committee as a Director. That role was a little bit different and including things like arranging conference materials, conference background guides ahead of time, as well as directing the flow of debate. The conference this weekend surrounded a fake scenario surrounding a horrific bombing at JFK airport. My role as director was to lead many delegates, representing the United States, to help resolve this issue.

Some of the delegates sing the United States National Anthem

Mr. Fryer: Wow! That sounds like a lot of work went into this. Have you been preparing for awhile?

Ryan: Two other SMUS students approached me at the start of January, and recommended to me that I apply as director for the conference as I have done MUN prior to this one. Ever since January, I have been working with my team to write two very lengthy documents: the committee introduction (which was 14 pages), and the General Briefing paper which was a document given to delegates the day of the conference which laid out everybody’s roles. The night before the event, I even chatted with SMUS Grad and Bolton Brother Logan who stepped in last-minute giving me pointers until 4 am!!

Mr. Fryer: Wow! Great to hear about the Bolton support! Congrats on your role, Ryan. That sounds like quite the experience. Is this your first time in a leadership role at MUN like this?

Roberto, Kevin, and Ryan working in their Ad Hoc Committee Roles

Ryan: Definitely first time in this role. I’ve been a delegate in other conferences like the Vancouver MUN but this is the first time in a director role, yes. I felt very lucky to be in this role at the first-ever SMUS hosted MUN.

Mr. Fryer: That’s right! This is the first time SMUS has hosting a Model UN. How was that experience?

Ryan: I’d say it completely exceeded my expectations. My biggest concern was that there was some inexperience with MUN (including me in a director role), but everybody played a part and did a fantastic job, including some of the Grade 8’s from SMUS.

Mr. Fryer: Wow, that’s great to hear! Can I ask, what was the most challenging moment was this weekend?

Ryan: The most challenging was laying out the world of MUN to all of the delegates – there was a lot of complexity including formal language to be used. Also, it took a lot of time and effort to comprehend what was happening around me during the weekend – it was challenging but it was also so much fun!

Mr. Fryer: There must have been such rich discussion all weekend. So, did the Model situation at JFK airport get resolved by all the committees in the end?

Ryan: In the end they did. Some committees closed borders, and all flights were grounded, and the CIA delegation worked hard to conclude the problem using intelligence in the air force. Throughout the whole thing, I think people spent a lot of money, so that is an important consideration – the economics of it all!

Bolton/Timmis delegates taking a break

Mr. Fryer: Yes, very complex. Any other thoughts? What was your biggest take away?

Ryan: Definitely that, to whoever is reading the blog, that politics is is all around us. MUN sparked a passion in me that I didn’t know was there. I have become more attentive and active in the political community. Whoever is reading this, give MUN a shot! I also want to give a shout-out to all the other Bolton boys who played a part this weekend: Dylan, Kevin, Junya, Eric X., Josh, Louis, Kevin, Richard and Roberto! It was almost 1/3 of the house involved and took a team.

Mr. Fryer: Congrats to all of you and enjoy the well-deserved rest!

Onwards to Term 5!

Lunar New Year Brings a Snow Day!

Family Day long weekend has arrived and although COVID-19 is still preventing us from connecting in person, we have plenty of other things to celebrate!

Lunar New Year is front of mind right now. Students gathered in the foyer to put up decorations and share in the festivities. A special meal was also prepared at the dining hall, complete with hóngbāo – the lucky red envelopes from Chinese culture associated with this time of year; for us, the cash that is usually inside was replaced by chocolate coins and candy!

There was a Chocolate Goodies Making activity to help kick off the long weekend and a few of our boys took up the opportunity to craft some homemade treats.

A giant colouring poster turned out to be a great way for people to connect in the foyer. Some serious “between the lines” skills were demonstrated and a new poster will be needed in short order!

As the snow began its first dusting, the rugby crew was willing to brave the elements to continue honing their skills. “I can’t feel my hands,” was a common call from the field and there’s nothing like a fitness blast on a cold day to really liven the senses!

The snow really came down Friday night and Saturday morning. Although some people hoped it had fallen mid week, there was no lack of enthusiasm to have a play day on the field. From snowmen to snow jumps, and snow football to snowball fights, there was plenty of fun by all who participated. A few students also offered their services to shovel the sidewalks and walkways around the neighborhood.

Holiday Decor Begins

Well, even though it is not quite that time of the year, we felt some holiday spirit was needed to help provide a little boost. Although our daylight is dwindling and the weather is wet, there is nothing quite like candy cane lights, a festive tree, shiny garlands, and two giant inflatable caricatures to put smiles on faces. Students were quick to get behind an early decorating day and many who left the house before the decorating had begun, came back to a wondrous display; in one case, impromptu caroling broke out in the foyer!

Despite the weather, Dylan and Hanson have been stalwarts on their respective bicycles. Though their bike styles are quite different, a shared appreciation for cycling easily forges bonds between enthusiasts of the two wheeled steeds. The two connected for some velocipede maintenance and shared their respective tricks of the trade. Dylan felt so inspired, that he has made some inquiries with local bike shops to learn more about the business of keeping bicycles roadworthy.

The Bolton house indoor pool….table has seen a lot of action of late. An ongoing ladder style tournament began and has drawn many a shark to the common room. Players have felt out the waters over the last couple weeks and competition remains high. We will see who’s at the top of the charts by winter break! Hanson has also solidified his role as the house Mr. Fixit. After working on Dylan’s bike, he then took on the job of cue custodian, as a couple tips and a butt bumper needed a little TLC.

The Grade 11’s just competed hard in the second instalment of House Games, both on the floor hockey arena and in Minute-to-Win-It Challenges! Pictures of the event to come next week!!

Thankful for the Long Weekend!

Despite the low boarder numbers in the house, our pack of eleven intrepid longweekenders were busy engaging in all sorts of activities that have been planned from Friday – Monday. Five Bolton brothers, Roberto, Darrell, Jonathan, Richard, and Kevin, plus one Timmis sister, Jenny, ventured a little ways up the Saanich Peninsula to Farmer Jim’s Organic Homestead. Farmer Jim prides himself of soil fertility and our small team of farmhands helped him towards this goal. Before getting down to work, they hand fed sheep, watched the pigs being fed, and learned that much of the feed is actually expired bread and dairy products that would be pitched in the garbage if not collected and used by Farmer Jim. After the feeding frenzy, it was time to don some gloves and get ankle deep in fresh horse manure! Most of the crew was required to shovel manure into wheelbarrows then redistribute it around the farm. Another job was picking up windfall apples that would be fed as treats to the livestock and some would be pressed for juice. Everyone worked hard and despite some drizzle, fun was had by all. And, a trip to Farmer Jim’s Organic Homestead wouldn’t be complete without sampling some fresh pressed apple juice – delicious!

The Friday night activity was a trip to the Silver City Theatres to watch Batman Begins on IMAX. By all accounts it was a great trip and a movie that can be enjoyed multiple times, as many had seen it when it was first released.


On Saturday, Richard, Diego, Darrell, Frank, Eric and Mr. Danskin donned their chef outfits (mostly in the form of masks) and headed to the London Chef to cook up lunch. What was on the menu you ask? Some delicious pasta and chicken salad! The overall reviews of the food were extremely positive, and everyone seemed to come back from this trip happier, fuller and (slightly) heavier 🙂

Sunday brought along a whole host of exciting adventures, starting with a very wet but very west-coast-experience whale watching trip with Phong, Cyrus and Mr. Kim! Under the tutelage of our fantastic guide Mr. Tommy, we headed out into the Georgia Strait and started looking out for wildlife. Although the waters were a bit choppy due to the strong winds, everyone toughed it out and in the end, we came across some seals, cormorants, bald eagles, and our big highlight, massive 2000-pound sea lions! We were not fortunate enough to run across any whales today, but we still had a great time and learned a lot about our local marine life 🙂

We came across a massive bulk carrier called the “Sage Danube”, which apparently sails under the flag of Liberia! Upon some further research, we found out that it was on its way back from conducting business in Vancouver.
Our extremely heavy sea lion friends 🙂
You can see the friendly one saying “hi” about 30 seconds in!
We think we might have caught them at nap time…
The majestic bald eagle!
Yes, seals and sea lions ARE in fact different creatures! The seals you see here are much smaller and much more active.
Martin, a Grade 12 student, managing to enter the deep sleep phase on a moving, rocking boat… Impressive!
Out for a ride with the boys.
We looked a bit like NASA astronauts boarding a spaceship here!

While some of the boys were on the water, a few of the other Bolton brothers, Richard, Diego, Darrell, Eric, and Frank, all took to the rope course and the zip-lines hight in the sky! Although it was a little wet, the boys had a fantastic time, practicing their superhero poses! Perhaps they learned some from the IMAX showing of Batman Begins on Friday night?!

And finally, at the end of the weekend, we all sat down for Thanksgiving Dinner together. As Bolton House Parents, we are so thankful for our vibrant community, and especially the Grade 11’s students who contribute to a wonderful house atmosphere. It has been an action-packed month, and this weekend has given everyone a chance to pause, and get ready for a full end to Term 1.

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

“Clean Up, It’s Time to Clean Up”

Living in boarding provides all kinds of independence and responsibility, some of which is exciting and welcomed, while others, not so much. Keeping a clean and tidy room is perhaps one of those not so welcomed responsibilities. So in Bolton we have developed a few tricks to help incentivize the experience and there is nothing like a little friendly competition to mobilized a crew of cleaners! The Bolton boys have their rooms checked once a week by houseparents, but now and again we like to mix it up, and this week was one of those special weeks. Our sister house is Timmis and two Timmis girls were selected for each room clean night to do the inspecting. It is always staggering to see the improved level of cleanliness that occurs when the the Timmis girls do the inspections! In order to increase the engagement, there is an award given to the cleanest room and the winning room receives a “Timmis Trophy” to be taped to their door for all to see. On Wednesday, Timmis roommates, Emma and Ashley, set a standard for inspections that won’t be soon forgotten and a big congratulations went to Eric and Josh for a job well done. Incidentally, not just a spotless toilet and dust free crannies were needed for a win, but the sultry tones of a saxophone helped seal the deal!

It was a busy week around the school with the annual Clubs and Councils Day. Several options were available this year and the boys were able to learn about different options or recruit for their own. Hanson and Jonathan did a great job promoting their respective clubs and there was plenty of keen interest for each.

We also had our annual visit from the Cops For Cancer cyclists. It was a little more subdued this year due to COVID protocols, but the ever important money and awareness was generated.