10. This first prank involves former Sports Information Director and DirJoseph Morsman ’55. “He used to drive around in a little Volkswagen Bug,” math teacher Sean Keller recalled. “I believe a bunch of kids picked [his car] up and they carried it straight into the dining hall. Because if you get twenty people on one of those, you could carry it. It’s a really small car.”
9. One of Facility Services Manager at Physical Plant Tim Wondolowski’s favorite pranks was “One year when the senior class kept spreading rumors about what they were going to do…they had security looking over their shoulders. They had administrators looking over their shoulders. It turned out that their class prank was no prank at all!”
8. Many pranks have involved Amie Creagh, former Dean of Students and currently the Assistant Head of School for Student Life. Last year, a group of seniors hired a mariachi band to follow Ms. Creagh for three hours straight. She even invited them to perform on stage at Wednesday school meeting.
7. Besides senior pranks, another popular senior tradition at Deerfield is the sacred “senior grass” that surrounds the Main School Building. This grass is reserved only for seniors. All other students must walk around the grass to the brick walkway in order to enter the building. One year, some particularly clever seniors placed sod down along the front walkway. As a result, no other students could access the building without treading on the newly formed “senior grass.”
6. One day in the 1980s, during the time of Headmaster Robert Kaufmann, everybody entering the main school building was greeted with a stunning sight: thousands and thousands of cups of water that spread across the floor of the building. “It took some coordination to do that,” said Mr. Wondoloski. “Nobody got hurt, nobody got disrupted. Everybody’s emptying the cups of water into buckets. From the admissions office to the Caswell—door to door, eight-ounce cups of water.” The best part? The cups were all filled up and placed again the next day.
5. In past years, the faculty sat in the first three rows of the auditorium on the left and right. A small group of seniors went into the auditorium before the school meeting and undid the screws that were bolting the seats down on the floor. They took the seats and flipped them backwards so that the faculty seats were facing away from the stage, and bolted them back down.
4. One year the seniors really decided to leave their mark at Deerfield. They brought a cow on campus and led it into the Main School Building, easing it up the stairs until it was on the second floor. Mr. Keller explained, “Once you get a cow to the second floor, they don’t want to go down. They can go up, but going down is a different story.”
3. The black security vehicle is a familiar sight for all Deerfield students. How much was the vehicle worth? Last year, a group of seniors decided to find out. They posted a listing for the security vehicle on eBay and let the offers pour in. As an added twist, they posted Ms. Creagh’s cell phone number as the primary point of contact for information about the vehicle’s sale.
2. Certain items in everyday Deerfield life are commonplace yet crucial. Seniors emphasized this point when they collected all the silverware in the dining hall and hid it in a day student’s car. Come sit-down lunch, everyone had to eat with their hands – and the meal was none other than shepherd’s pie.
1. While the kidnapping of the ninth graders has become a regular senior prank, none were executed as smoothly and effectively as the original, which took place around fifteen years ago. Mr. Keller described, “We were a bit of a smaller school at the time, so there were fewer freshmen than there are now. They took them all at some early hour of the morning.” However, rather than sending the freshmen out to the Rock or some other far location, the seniors hid them right on campus in the basement of the Crow Commons. “The seniors provided orange juice and breakfast food. They simply closed the door and let the freshmen watch movies with their blankets and pillows. And there were signs all over campus that said, ‘Where are the freshmen?’”