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The View From Here

The View From Here: What to Wear... to Big Night Out

by Janet Durgin, Head of School

It’s no secret that at Sonoma Academy, we love to dress up. From the Halloween parade around the gym to co-block lipsynch competitions to role-playing Humanities exams, many occasions at SA call for creative costuming. But it’s not only the students who enjoy dressing up; from time to time, our staffulty and parents like to try on some unusual clothes (and maybe some unusual personas, as well).

SA’s biggest dress-up event of the year doesn’t occur during school hours; it’s Big Night Out, our annual fundraiser. This not-to-be-missed evening always has a unique theme, often inviting guests to try out some outlandish fashion for the evening.

This past Wednesday, the new Broadcast Studio was transformed into a fashion shoot set. Using props from the garden shed, loaned frocks from Hot Couture Vintage in Santa Rosa, and a slew of fabulous accessories purloined from the theater department, our Marketing & Communications Interns photographed and filmed students, parents, and staffulty members—and yes, yours truly—modeling a variety of different looks to provide inspiration for BNO attendees. The photo is of Nina von Raesfeld '19 photographing her mother, Kathleen, as she models one of the many outfits designed to inspire you. SAPA volunteers and fashion-focused students assisted with styling and makeup, and we even had a surprise appearance from a very well-behaved and photogenic chicken!

This year’s Big Night Out theme, The Secret Garden, lends itself to many different interpretations. From Victorian Garden Party to Venus Flytrap Femme Fatale to American Gothic to Compost Heap Chic, anything plant-inspired goes. Let nature be your guide, and you’ll nail the dress code.

Of course, creative costumes and stunning decorations make Big Night Out a lot of fun, but we don’t just gather for a costume party. The funds raised at BNO allow us to provide financial aid, invest in sustainability features, put on incredible performing arts productions, and hire and retain incredible faculty, among many other things. This night of revelry is actually one of the most important events of our year, and the generosity demonstrated by our community at BNO is critically important to our growth and success as an institution.

Keep a lookout for the “What to Wear to BNO” video, coming soon… and in the meantime, raid your closets and your potting sheds to pull together a home-grown outfit, or start shopping for some garden-glam garb. It isn’t your outfit that matters, it’s your support of our school and our future.
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Sonoma Academy is the only private, independent, college preparatory high school in Sonoma County. On our beautiful campus nestled at the base of Taylor Mountain in Southeastern Santa Rosa, our students are able to explore their interests and passions in a rigorous and inspiring environment that develops a lifelong love of learning and prepares them for college and beyond.