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The 2019 Auction & Celebrating Burgundy

Friday, February 15, 2019

As I am sure you now know, the Auction is on Saturday, March 2, and what you’ve heard and read is true!

The Auction is a fun, full grown-folks evening out that I look forward to every year. This year's theme is "Reaching for the Stars," and it will be my 14th Burgundy Auction. (I attended one before I even officially began working here.) The creativity and innovation with which the Gym is utterly transformed never ceases to amaze me! And everyone has a terrific time from start to finish. It’s a memorable occasion each and every year.

The Auction is also a most impactful fundraiser that makes it possible to realize the goals of our financial aid program. With the growing buzz surrounding the fun of the Auction, we also don’t want to forget its vital importance to our community and our school.

The other day in a meeting with parents it became clear to all of us that in many ways, but particularly in socially and politically charged times as these, Burgundy is an oasis. Burgundy is a place where children can be themselves, safe and buffered from much of the harshness of the world outside; a place where they learn about themselves, and others, and the world; a place where they can find ways to safely engage and meet the challenges of the world, with growing confidence that they have a voice that matters and that can make a difference.

More than ever I see that Burgundy’s nearly 75-year-old mission of child-centered, developmental, whole-person education is not only relevant but imperative! Just look at other schools’ websites today! They’re echoing what we’ve been heralding for many decades. Who can debate the importance of developing a learning environment in which students learn to love learning, where they are taught to care for others as well as the Earth — and where they learn to advocate for themselves, for others, and for the causes they care about?

What a consolation to know that we have a class of graduating eighth graders each year who are prepared for all that await them, who value diversity and think independently, and who will go on to make the world a better place in a multitude of ways.

I know I’m far from alone in my excitement. Our teachers, staff, and parents all feel a sense of community, with comfort and satisfaction in the knowledge that our children are going to leave Burgundy prepared to be citizens who make a difference. Indeed, there is a shared excitement around the impact of our learning community on our own children but also on the world beyond Burgundy.

We have an ever-stronger sense of community emanating from that excitement, and the culture of generosity -- the spirit of volunteering and the philanthropic giving at Burgundy -- directly follows from the belief that what we’re doing together matters so much. It’s exciting to be in this together. And that brings us to a second function of the Auction -- to celebrate Burgundy! Our participation in raising money for financial aid and our shared commitment to Burgundy make for a real celebration of what is happening on the individual level for Burgundy students and alumni and also in a more global sense!

I am excited for March 2 and eager to enjoy the evening with many of you!