Let’s say Aloha to the athletes of J. Clarke Richardson Collegiate as they embark on their first multi-sport tour. I had the chance recently to interview Phys. Ed. teacher Mr. Hunter who will be traveling to Hawaii with the athletes this March Break.
EYE ON THE STORM: Besides you, who else is responsible for this trip?
MR. HUNTER: The staff going is myself, Mr.Parfitt, Ms. Nicholls-Brown, Mr. Saunders and Ms. Hunt.
EYE ON THE STORM: How much effort did it take for you to plan this trip and convince enough people to make this trip happen?
MR. HUNTER: I guess the planning started about three or four years ago. We talked to the athletes as they came along, talking to the volleyball players and asking them, “Are you guys interested in a trip when you’re in Grade 11 and Grade 12 and kind of [getting] all the information needed and bringing up the enthusiasm and talking with their friends about it. The real planning started last March, just getting board approval, talking to Mr. Kennelly, our former principal, and working out the details and finding a tour company who could provide us with all our needs for all the excursions and then and at the same time, provide us with contacts from there to play those sports.
EYE ON THE STORM: How many people are going on this trip?
MR. HUNTER: There’s 41 people going to Hawaii, 36 students and 5 staff
EYE ON THE STORM: How much did each student and staff had to pay to go on to Hawaii?
MR. HUNTER: It was $2,650 and then most of them actually fundraised more than half the cost and did a lot of fundraising activities to go on this trip [for] a lesser cost.
EYE ON THE STORM: What will you be doing in Hawaii?
MR. HUNTER: So the first day is kind of like a shopping day and we’d be reaching there around three in the afternoon, doing a little grocery shopping, having a little dinner and go to the beach for about an hour. The next day, we will be hitting the beach and the day after that, we’ll be playing all our games in tournaments. And the day after that, we’ll be going to the water park. The day after that, we’re going on a volcano trek and the day after that is going on a snorkelling trip. Day after that, we’ll be going the Pearl Harbour, having a historical tour and the day after that, is more games at the beach such as beach volley ball, beach rugby, beach soccer, beach lacrosse and then a couple more beach days and then we come home.
EYE ON THE STORM: How long will the trip be?
MR. HUNTER: The trip to Hawaii is from the 12th of March to the 21st of March, it’s about a week and a half. We leave to the airport on Friday the 13th, at 2am to Hawaii and we’ll be making our way back here from Friday the 20th because of the time difference between Ontario and Hawaii and get here by Saturday the 21st.
EYE ON THE STORM: What do you expect from this trip?
MR. HUNTER: I guess to see Hawaii and for the sports teams that are going, probably not super successful because we are playing against a lot of sport club teams there who are more experienced than our athletes. But our teams will do fine.
EYE ON THE STORM: What do you expect the athletes should look forward to when they’re going to Hawaii?
MR. HUNTER: Well, it’s not about going there to win, it’s just for them to have a feeling of being in another place, experience a different culture and to just have fun in Hawaii.
EYE ON THE STORM: You have already told me, but I need to ask: Is this your first time going to Hawaii? Or somewhere similar with the school?
MR. HUNTER: First time to Hawaii, previous trips were to Ireland (2006), England (2008) and Scotland (2010). We are supposed to go to Argentina [in] a couple years ago, but we didn’t have enough people to join.
EYE ON THE STORM: After Hawaii, what’s the next trip you plan on going to?
MR. HUNTER: Definitely, probably head down to the United Kingdom and travel to places such as London, Wales, Scotland, Ireland, etc. In general, the sports are not just sports, but an opportunity to travel and explore different parts of the world.
EYE ON THE STORM: Well, that’s all the questions I can ask you, but thank you so much for taking the time to answer my questions and I hope you have a safe trip to and from Hawaii.
MR. HUNTER: Thank you for having me here.
There you have it, folks. Forty-One people are going to Hawaii to enjoy the sun during the March Break and we sure hope that they take pictures of their trip to Hawaii. As for the rest of us, I truly hope you have a fantastic March Break and I certainly hope there’s something to do in the cold during the March Break. Aloha!