Our spirit clubs, the Suns and Dials, are one of our most cherished traditions. Every student, teacher and staff member is inducted into one of these clubs, which were created by students in the very first year of the School’s operation. Suns and Dials activities have evolved over the decades, but the importance of students’ club identification and the keenness of competition between the two clubs has not diminished over time. Today each girl is assigned a Club Girl, who is a returning student who will lead her through an induction process.
During the course of the year, there are various activities where the clubs earn points which are then tallied at the end of the year and one club is declared the winner. These activities include the Dogswood Day festivities. Dogswood Day has been celebrated since the earliest days of Ethel Walker’s leadership. Today, the actual date of Dogswood Day is a secret until announced by the Head of School. Dogswood Day begins with a traditional English country dance performed by the Big 7; this tradition has its origin in the May Pole dance originally performed every May 1st. For the remainder of the day, students divide into their respective Clubs to compete in games and activities.
The day concludes with the traditional tug-of-war, always a fiercely contested conclusion to the day. The Suns and Dials then gather together to anxiously await the announcement of the final point tally for the year. The winning club earns the honor of having their club flag fly at the top of the flagpole at the Galbraith Gym, as well as 12 months of bragging rights.
During the year, there are several Spirit days when everyone comes adorned in their respective club colors. The following colors are designated for each club:
- SUNS: yellow, red, and orange
- DIALS: purple, blue, and pink
When a member of the community is recognized for some kind of achievement, it is traditional to sing a "Hooray Sunray" - the words of which are:
“Hooray! Sunray! (person’s name), here’s to you!
Bring on, bring on,
Suns, Suns, (Dial, Dials) (person’s name), here’s to you!”
Olivia Gazzam Morrish, a member of the Class of 1914 and one of the founders of the Suns and Dials, wrote this lyric.
Each club is led by two students, a Senior serving as Head and a Junior serving as Co-Head. The Head and Co-Head are responsible for organizing Suns and Dials activities, and generating club spirit. At the conclusion of Dogswood Day each Spring, the Co-Head assumes the role of Head. A new Co-Head is selected after a competition in which interested sophomores demonstrate their spirit.
Past Dogswood Day Winners
2004 - Dials
2005 - Dials
2006 - Dials
2007 - Suns
2008 - Dials
2009 - Dials
2010 - Suns
2011 - Suns
2012 - Dials