Seniors spend warm weekend away at ski resort

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This past weekend, Townsend Harris High School Class of 2020 stayed at Honor’s Haven Resort in Ellenville, New York for the annual senior trip. After a morning of classes on Friday, the seniors left for the weekend to return on Sunday. 

Students had the opportunity to indulge in various activities over the weekend, such as roller skating and hiking. Students also had the choice to go skiing, snowboarding, paintballing, or horseback riding for an additional cost. Further amenities were offered, including a swimming pool, games, trivia, and an exercise room. On Saturday night, the seniors also attended a black and white party. 

Senior Lucas Ayala said, “I participated in roller skating, paintball, hiking, and swimming in the pool. I also played some sports with my friends and just relaxed at the resort.” Similarly, senior Maria Leyba swam, sang karaoke, played Just Dance, roller skated, and hiked. 

Hiking stood out as a favorite amongst students. “Hiking was by far my favorite activity because the amazing views we encountered were worth the challenging climb up a slippery mountain,” said Maria. Senior Emily Tan agreed, “The trail is really scenic and my friends and I spent about three hours trekking through the woods and taking lots of cute pictures.”

One concern among students was the price of the trip. “I think it was definitely worth the money solely for the experiences you can have with your friends and roommates whether in your rooms or out and about,” said senior Shannon Thomas. “While I think some of the free activities were not as good as the ones you had to pay extra for, I think what came with the trip still made it worth the price.” 

“The pricing seems steep at first, but if you take advantage of all the free amenities and activities offered throughout the weekend, you’ll definitely get your money’s worth,” added Maria. “There’s also a buffet at every meal, so that’s a plus.”

In terms of pricing, senior advisor Jaime Baranoff commented, “The tour company pretty much tells us the prices, but the more people you have in your room, the less expensive it is. We do offer payment plans; some kids paid all at once, some kids paid twenty dollars at a time.”

Ms. Baranoff played an instrumental role in the organization of this trip. “A lot of [the work] had to happen at the last minute because we had kids that paid a fifty dollar deposit back in November when they didn’t know if they were going to go or not,” she explained. “We had to assign kids to chaperones and buses, but we couldn’t do that until we had the final list of kids going, and even up until the day before the trip, I was still adding or taking kids out.”

Ultimately, Ms Baranoff’s efforts paid off. Many seniors expressed that senior trip was an enjoyable experience that allowed them to spend quality time with their classmates in their last year together at Townsend Harris. 

“You spend a whole weekend with friends and you’re able to do things you normally can’t do in NYC,” Emily said. “I would definitely recommend this trip [to underclassmen].”

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