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REPORTING · 14th February 2015
Walter McFarlane
Last week’s blizzard had an effect on many groups around the community. One of the groups affected was the High and Middle MEMSS School Band who had planned a trip to the UBC School of Music to receive instruction from the UBC Wind Ensemble Musical Director, Christopher Unger as well as the UBC Wind Ensemble Students. There were other activities which were planned and the weekend would have been a busy and exciting weekend.

However, the group was so large, it could not fit on a single flight. 10 students and a chaperone would go down to Vancouver on a smaller flight and the rest of the 31 students would leave on a larger flight. Both flights would leave Thursday February 5th. The first flight got out all right. The second flight was cancelled at 9:30 pm.

“By then, the weather had deteriorated and Friday was much worse -- in the interest of keeping all students safe the trip was cancelled and students could be at home with their families,” said Band Director Courtney Preyser.

The students behaved very well, as it was noted by the airport staff how well they behaved while waiting almost 5 hours in the airport for the flight to depart, and then even longer to get home after the flight was cancelled. There was a mixture of emotions from the group that was left behind,” said Preyser.

“Students in Vancouver who made their afternoon flight were a mixture of happy they got to be on the trip, but, sad that their friends and peers could not make it."

A decision was made for those students to remain in Vancouver.

The trip cost the students about $40-45,000 for everything. Students paid $300 of their own money and the rest was fundraised over 2 years of hard work. For the moment, the details concerning refunding the trip is still being worked out and it is anticipating the fundraising account will be out many dollars.