PW 40yr

Prince of Wales Mini School celebrates its 40th Anniversary in 2013!

If you weren’t able to attend the 40th Anniversary celebration at the Mini on June 22,2013, here are the highlights. You can also see the full gallery of photos from our grade 11 photographers, Eric Van Nus and Joe Gustafson, here.

Be sure not to miss our 50th Anniversary in 2023!

On Saturday June 22, 2013, 450 alumni, students, teachers, and parents came together for a casual afternoon and evening of re-connecting with old friends and celebrating the enduring Mini spirit.

The school was decked out with balloons and banners and the classrooms were decorated with photos and memorabilia from the 70s through to the present. A BBQ buffet was prepared by our Mini parents headed by Tomi Asakawa, featuring burgers from Vera’s Burger Shack.

After the BBQ everyone gathered in the auditorium for the first ever, all-decades, Mini assembly, hosted by the very entertaining Peter Harpur ’02. Our principal, Jim Burnham welcomed everyone back to Prince of Wales. Then it was time for some student talent as Benjamin Millman, grade 8, took to the stage to perform an original song on piano.

The slide show prepared by Cecilia Tao ’10 was next. Cecilia managed to condense 40 years of old photos and slides into a 20 minute presentation with music, including Spirit of the West’s Home for a Rest. The slide show chronicled events of a typical Mini School year from Strathcona in September to year-end trips in June, with special events along the way such as Biz Baz, the Japan & Quebec exchanges, a trike race, and marathon dance. The crowd cheered the loudest whenever photos of our Mini School staff appeared.

Grade 11s Ada Sin and Claire Honda followed the slide show with a reprise of their Arts Night hit, a medley of movie theme songs on piano and violin.

Ken Annandale, head teacher from the mid 80s, spoke from the heart about the unique family feeling at the Mini and the importance of contributing to the Len Drugge Legacy Fund to ensure that future students can participate fully in the Mini School. Ken closed with a message from his friend and colleague Dr. Len Drugge, who was unable to attend the celebration due to declining health.

After Ken’s remarks, Betty MacDonald (Mrs. Mac to hundreds of Minis), school secretary from the 70s and 80s, came on stage to draw the winning ticket in the 50:50 raffle. In a surprising co-incidence the winner was Ken’s son, Mike Annandale ’91!

A beautiful birthday cake was brought on stage as we all sang happy 40th birthday to the Mini. The pavlova cake donated by grade 10 Mini mom, Xiaowei Zhong, was ceremoniously cut by our office team from the 1990s through to 2005, Marilyn Repanos and Sue Jackson.

Head teacher Andrew Humphries closed the show by thanking the parents, alumni, and students who worked all year long to make this celebration a reality. Particular thanks went to Tomi Asakawa grade 11 mom, Astrid Visscher ’77, and Janet Seigneuret ’77 & grade 11 mom.

We returned to the Mini for cake and coffee. Many alumni pitched in with clean up and many others had to be coaxed out the door well past our 10:30pm end time, the sign of a successful party!

And with that, the 40th Anniversary Celebration was a wrap!

Our 40th Anniversary Facebook page will stay up as an alumni page where everyone can post photos and alumni news. In September we’ll work on creating an informal alumni group and will follow up on the survey results from our ticket selling page.

Thank you to alumni who have expressed interest in coming to the school to share their knowledge and experiences with our Mini undergrads.

Any suggestions for future alumni events, speakers, fundraising etc. can be sent to [email protected].

Please keep donating to the Legacy Fund at the Vancouver Foundation. We’re getting close to this year’s goal of $50,000… every dollar helps!

Roll On Mini!