A Frenzied Fortnight

This week the Bolton boys took advantage of a wonderfully sunny Saturday to spend the afternoon at Willows Beach with their friends from Timmis House.  All had a great time whilst enjoying snacks and competing in various lawn games.

As the second week of classes began, the academic rigour has started to set in as the boys had the demands of homework to now consume their evening prep time.  It was nice to see them hard at work as new teachers and new demands were set.

Last Sunday, the entire house made their way to the field to compete in the first house games of the year as demonstrated great athleticism and sportsmanship in a myriad of challenges.  The Bolton team won many of the events which bodes well in the quest for the House Cup.

With the grade 11s on their out trips in the upcoming week and facing their next surfing, hiking or sailing challenge, the house will be a little bit quieter!  We will anxiously await the updates from their epic journeys.

This morning, the house went down to Dallas Road along the waterfront to join the 5km Terry Fox run to honour his courageous run back in 1980.  Fortunately, the sun was shining as the perfect backdrop for a morning run.

The vibe in the house to start the year has been great as connections and friendships are being solidified.  As houseparents, we are very encouraged by the positivity and brotherhood on display.

Mr. Bates

Bolton is Back!

Welcome to all the penguins new and returning!

We had a very busy week! The grade 12’s decorated the house were here to welcome all of the new Bolton students. In the evening after some icebreaker games, the gr. 12’s from Bolton and Timmis shared their knowledge of rules and routines of boarding.

We even had a visit from Mr. Daum, the senior houseparent from a few years ago!

There were two days of classes on Thursday and Friday which meant full uniforms! Lucas one of our heads of house was giving some lessons to Takuto on tying a tie.

We concluded the week with our annual picnic at Willow’s Beach. It was a beautiful day, with perfect beach weather. House parents and Bolton/Timmis students all came down to the beach and brought many games to play. There was bocce ball, cornhole, volleyball and some even ventured into the ocean!

After the beach the gr. 12’s took new students to downtown Victoria on public transit. This is another good opportunity for the 12’s to connect with the new students and teach them how to get around Victoria.

Everyone will have a full week of classes this week!

Welcome from Mr. Perkins

Hello everyone!

My name is Jon Perkins and I am looking forward to my first year as a house parent in Bolton House at SMUS! 

While I am new to boarding, I am quite familiar with things here as I have operated our on-campus cafe/espresso bar, The Howard Cafe alongside the SMUS business club, since 2019. Aside from my roles at SMUS, I have owned and operated multiple cafes and restaurants in downtown Victoria for the past 16 years. I enjoy spending time with my partner Melissa and our two dogs, along with dedicating as much time as I can to music production, DJing and exploring all kinds of different culinary experiences. 

Welcome to Bolton from Mr. Stewart!

Hello everyone! My name is Mr. Stewart, and I am entering into my third year as a house parent at SMUS. I am very excited to get the year going and to meet everyone!

I grew up on Vancouver Island in the small town of Campbell River and have lived in Victoria for over 10 years. I am currently studying web development at a school on Vancouver Island. This summer I was able to explore the province with my partner, but also enjoyed some downtime at home. In my spare time I like to ride my bike, tend to my garden, and listen to my ever growing collection of vinyl records. I am looking forward to another great year as a house parent in Bolton House!

Welcome to Bolton from Mr. Barahona!

Hello! My name is Mauricio Barahona, and this is my second year as an assistant houseparent at SMUS. I’m proud to be part of the Bolton family, and I’m excited to share in many new adventures and experiences this year.

Originally from Quito, Ecuador, I moved to Canada in 2012 and have had the opportunity to live in Montreal, Winnipeg and, now, beautiful Victoria. 

This past summer was our first on Vancouver Island, and it was a great one. My wife Mrs. DeMelo (Winslow houseparent and senior school teacher) spent lots of time outdoors hiking and exploring new beaches with our dog Nanuk. I’m also passionate about soccer and cycling and spent a lot of time on the field with friends and riding my bike around the island. One of my highlights was riding up Hurricane Ridge in the Olympic Mountains. 

I speak Spanish and French, and I am happy to practice with you or learn new words from your home language. I look forward to a wonderful year!

Welcome to Bolton from Mr. Bell!

Hi everyone! My name is Mr. Bell and I am very excited to be entering my fifth year in the Bolton House and eighth year as a House Parent with SMUS!

I was born and raised in Victoria and grew up just minutes from the St. Michaels campus. I teach Grade 3 at the SMUS Jr. School down in Oak Bay and have coached basketball and volleyball at the SMUS for the past six years. I also love to play lacrosse and explore the island in my spare time! I am looking forward to an exciting and successful year in Bolton House!

Welcome to Bolton 2023-2024 from Mr. Bates

My name is Steve Bates and I am the senior assistant house parent in Bolton House. I am excited to begin my 8th year in the boarding community at SMUS.

I had a wonderful summer as I spent two weeks travelling the eastern seaboard through the states of Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. I was then able to enjoy some sunshine and golf in the regions of the Okanagan and Whistler within beautiful British Columbia. My final week of holidays found me exploring the Mayan Rivera and all of the wonderful sites and attractions that the Caribbean Sea has to offer.

A few quick notes about myself … after teaching internationally for several years in Mexico & Spain, I returned to Canada and began my first year at SMUS in September 2007.  Currently, this is my 16th year teaching mathematics at the senior school.  I balance my academics as an assistant coach with the Senior Boys basketball team and co-lead many of the international boarding and Spring Break cultural trips.

In my time off campus, I like to play golf and baseball in a local men’s league.  I thoroughly enjoy travelling and exploring other cultures.  To date, I have been to 40+ countries and am always looking forward to the next adventure abroad.

 I’m very excited to continue to be a part of the SMUS Boarding community as the senior assistant house parent in Bolton.  The boarding experience is a remarkable journey and I’m honoured to be a part of the memories along the way in this close knit, supportive family.

Welcome to Bolton from the Fryer’s!

Happy New School Year!

My name is Evan Fryer and I am the Senior House Parent for Bolton House this year. My wife, Kelsey, and I live right here in Bolton House and can’t wait for the start of another fantastic school year and welcoming all the new and returning students.

This is my 12th year involved in the Boarding Program at SMUS and we are very excited about contributing to the unique culture of our house this year. In Bolton House alone, we have students arriving from over almost 20 different nationalities and even more cultures and identities from around the world.

This summer, Kelsey and I drove down the West Coast the United States and camped at many of the state parks in Oregon and California. It was a great way to spend part of the summer and we were able to check out some cool areas of San Francisco and Los Angeles as well.

I also teach in the Mathematics Department at the Senior School and coach the Sr. Boys Soccer Team, so I may get to see your child during the school day too! There are so many wonderful opportunities for our students in the first few weeks of school, so we really encourage them to sign-up for lots of activities and get involved!

All of us in Bolton can’t wait for another exciting year at SMUS! We hope that you return to this blog throughout the school year to see what we are up to! We try to get something new posted every Sunday night 🙂

Goodbye (For Now)

Here we are – at the end of the 2022-23 School Year!

With the last day of formal classes behind us, the campus is growing increasingly quiet. Our students have been saying their tearful goodbyes while rooms full of memories are slowly being cleaned. For some, this is only the start of a break until the new school year. For others, this is the end to an amazing school year and their time at SMUS.

Regardless of Bolton students’ September plans, one thing is for sure: they have called this place home for the last 10 months. It has been a year with so many wonderful moments (as documented in this blog). There have also been challenges along the way, with leaps and bounds of personal and social development. I have been so proud and honoured to work with each of the 44 students who have lived here in Bolton House this year. And, even though this Bolton House will never be the same, we hope that our paths cross again.

Our attention on campus for the next few days turns to our Graduates of 2023, many of whom have been in our boarding programme for 4 or 5 years. It is time to celebrate all of their wonderful achievements and remind them of how far they have come.

For those Penguins who are not returning, please know that your House Parents are still here in Victoria, cheering you along as SMUS alumni in your journey throughout life. Don’t forget to keep in touch and visit sometime in the future – you will be so missed until then.

Thank you to all the parents who have trusted the School and our group of house parents in the care of your children this year. They have been a joy to work with everyday and provided so much learning for us, as adults, too. We hope you have enjoyed following the blog throughout the school year and thank you for all your support along the way.

From all of us here in Bolton House, we wish you a restful summer.

– Mr. Fryer

Bolton House – 2022-23

Slippin’ and Slidin’ Into The Final Week!

Can you believe it – we just wrapped up the final full week of the school year..! It seems like yesterday that everyone was arriving on campus and settling in to their new rooms and their new routines, but now we are getting ourselves ready to head off for the summer break! In this post you will see lots of photos and videos from the end-of-year events on campus and also the exciting boarding festivities throughout the week.

Digvijay, along with some students from Timmis and a group of day students, spent some time volunteering for Down Syndrome Awareness – way to go Digvijay!

Ai, Tommy, Kyle, Kenneth, Marcus and Connor took advantage of the beautiful weather at school to enjoy the Senior School Marketplace. Kyle and Ai were selling delicious “Frozen Frenzy”, while Marcus and Kenneth cooked up some savoury fish balls. Both stalls were a hit!

On Tuesday evening, the school put on the annual Athletics Banquet in the double gym. Many teams and individuals were celebrated at this event, with Krissh picking up the Tennis Team Award, Leupold picking up the Judy Tobacco Award for Track & Field, the Team Award for Track & Field and the Runner-up Male Athlete of the Year awards, and Oscar winning the Basketball Team Award and the Bill Greenwell Award for basketball. What an achievement from our Bolton athletes!

This year in the Grade 9 and 10 Engineering & Technology classes, the students have been working on designing Arduino-controlled machines to play crokinole. Cesar, Declan, Christian and Sasha all put their designs to the test, with some big scores and plenty to cheer about!

The house photo is always a fun evening tradition where we get dressed up in immaculate #1s and take our photo for the Bolton hallways. The Grade 12 photos are here – big group photo coming soon!

On Wednesday the entire house walked over to Bistro Chi Q for our annual house dinner, where we were treated to delicious Korean chicken and other authentic dishes.

Right after the house dinner, we headed to the Sun Centre Commons for Grade 12 speeches and Bolton Awards. Huge congratulations to the departing Grade 12s and to our award winners, Ian Chan, Lucas Lu and Joshua Kim!

Sunday was a day reserved for some slip n’ slide fun – videos below!

Check out the link below to the recent issue of SMART Magazine which showcases student art from all throughout the Senior School.


As we near the end of another school year, it is always meaningful to reflect on how far we’ve come and where we’ve come from. As a reminder of our joyous, carefree selves from when we were young, check out these throwback photos of our very own Nokia from when he attended the SMUS summer program back in 2016..!!!