Monthly Archives: October 2011

Chargers Bring Home Banners in Tennis, Cross Country and Advance to Volleyball Championship!


On Tuesday, the Varsity Soccer team defeated Field School in dramatic fashion in double overtime, advancing to the semi-finals of the PVAC tournament.  Earlier this season, the two teams tied in overtime.  With the 4th seed in the tournament, the Chargers hosted the Quarter Finals in front of a large crowd of fans.  A close game with near misses and great saves by both goalies led to over time.  In the PVAC, overtime is golden goal which means the first team to score wins.  In the final minutes of the second over time, Abby F. scored off a cross from Alex A. to avoid penalty kicks.  The Chargers traveled to DC to face the WIS Red Devils in the Semi Finals of the Tournament last night, and lost after playing a hard game.  The team played hard and we congratulate them on a great season!


The Middle School Cross Country team dominated the PVAC Championship Meet on October 26!  Not only did the team repeat as league Champions, but 5 finishes in the top 7 and were awarded medals. Gabriella B. defended her title finishing first with a new personal record. Her sister Isabell was a close second place finish. Other members of the team: Jackie P. (#5), Georgia G. (#6), Helen Y. (#7), Lauren M. (#12) and Grace A. (#14). Go Chargers!


The Varsity Tennis Team finished the season tied for first place thus capturing their second title in as many years.  #1 Singles Mary Margaret E. and #1 doubles Desiree F. and Liz N. went undefeated this season.  Both are seeded #1 in the PVAC Tournament.  Also earning a #1 seed were the #2 doubles team of Eileen D. and Tory Z. The PVAC tournament starts Monday October 24.  The team hopes to defend their 2010 tournament title.


On Thursday night, the Varsity Volleyball team came from behind and defeated Burke 3-2!  They will play in the Championship game on Tuesday November 1.



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Filed under Athletics, Character, Green & White, Student Life

Listening to People’s Hearts: Fr. Ron Gillis provides spiritual direction for many

An excerpt from the Arlington Catholic Herald:

By Lisa Socarras | For the Catholic Herald


Born and raised in Boston, Father Ron Gillis calls 1967 the year of “The Impossible Dream” because the Red Sox won the American League Pennant and because the youngest of eight children in the Gillis household was ordained to the priesthood.

“My father was in seventh heaven,” he said, reflecting on his vocation. “I regard it as a miracle, the whole expectation that you could be called by God to give everything. I looked at the crucifix and said, ‘Lord, You did all that for me. What should I be willing to do for You?’”

Today, 44 years later, Father Gillis serves as chaplain at both the Reston Study Center and Oakcrest School in McLean, and as a spiritual director at Mount St. Mary’s Seminary in Emmitsburg, Md., a position he has held for the past 30 years. Some years, he has given ongoing spiritual direction to more than 40 seminarians, driving twice a week from Northern Virginia to listen, advise and guide those in priestly formation.

As an Opus Dei priest working in the Washington, D.C., area for the past 38 years, Father Gillis has administered the sacraments, taught courses, preached, and provided spiritual direction and evenings of recollection for hundreds of married men and women as well as students. He always has been selfless and ready to help others on their personal path to sanctity, part of the universal call to holiness.

Opus Dei, a personal prelature of the Catholic Church, was founded in Spain in 1928 by St. Josemaría Escrivá, who taught that work and the circumstances of ordinary life are occasions for growing closer to God, serving others and for improving society.

To continue reading the full Arlington Catholic Herald article, click HERE.

Photo by Arlington Catholic Herald

THANK YOU for everything you do for Oakcrest, Fr. Ron!

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Oakcrest 35th Anniversary Gala

On Saturday, October 1st, Oakcrest parents, alumnae, alumnae parents, present and former faculty and staff, and friends attended the Oakcrest 35th Anniversary Gala.  It was a beautiful evening and everyone had a wonderful time!  Thank you so much to all of the parents, teachers, students, staff, alumnae and friends who contributed time, effort, creativity, talent, items and donations to make this year’s Gala possible!  Special thanks to this year’s Gala Chairs: Anne Livaudais Knudsen, Carolina Agostini, Wendy Noe and Maggie Watts.

The evening began with two hours of cocktails and hors d’oeuvres in the Oakcrest Lobby.  The lobby glistened with gold and white decor, and historic Oakcrest photos were displayed on each table.  Guests enjoyed talking with friends and participated in many of the Gala activities – the Giving Tree, iPod Touch raffle, Best of Live raffle, and Wine Pull.  Student Hostesses gave gold and green lapel pins featuring the Oakcrest crest and commemorative wine corks featuring the Oakcrest 35th Anniversary logo as thank you gifts to participants.

After enjoying cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, guests were invited to the tent outside for dinner.  After a warm welcome from Head of School, Ellen Cavanagh and from the Master of Ceremonies, Ann Royals Vitz (Class of 2001, President of the Oakcrest Alumnae Association Board), the Oakcrest Chorus serenaded guests with two beautiful songs.  A special thank you to Anne Miller, the Oakcrest Chorus Director.

Fr. Ron Gillis, the Oakcrest Chaplain, led the prayer before the meal.  During the dinner, special recognition was given to former Oakcrest faculty and staff, Oakcrest alumnae representatives, and the Seniors (Class of 2012).

After a scrumptious meal, Oakcrest fathers, Othon Wiltz (President, Oakcrest Board of Directors) and Rich Giuntini led the live auction.  The evening was a great success!  We hope to see you again next year at the Gala! 

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Photos by Brian Searby Photography.  To order photos, please contact

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Filed under Alumnae, Parent Partnership, School Traditions, Special Events

Fall Spirit Week 2011!

This year’s Fall Spirit Week was a blast for everyone  –  super hero dress up days, daily trivia question contests, class cheer competition and field day…it was one of the best Spirit Weeks ever!  Thank you so much to Miss Heeter (Oakcrest Athletics Director) and the Student Council, especially Spirit Captains, Desiree and Lovisa.  The Seniors (Class of 2012) won first place in the cheer competition!  The Senior cheer combined ALL the past cheers of the Class of 2012, starting from their Middle School years.  It was well planned, flawlessly performed, and everyone was on their feet with applause and cheers at the end.  The 6th grade came in second place, and the Sophomores came in third.  After the Field Day results were tallied up, it was clear that the Green Team was the winner for this year’s Fall Spirit Week!

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Photos courtesy of Oakcrest Yearbook Staff.

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Filed under Green & White, School Traditions, Student Life

Upper School Mini-Courses & Middle School Bonding Trips!

On Thursday, September 22nd, while the Middle Schoolers were away on bonding  fieldtrips, the Upper Schoolers had an afternoon of Mini-Courses.  During two one-hour sessions, Upper School students participated in their choice of 2 Mini-Courses.  The Mini-Courses offered were:

1.         American Sign Language– Mrs. Collins

2.         Cake Decorating: Scalloped Edges and Roses – Mrs. Kelly

3.         Calligraphy – Mrs. Carducci

4.         Contemporary Dancing –Amanda H. ’12

5.         Farkle: A Dice Game of Probability – Mrs. Hammarsten

6.         Handcrafted Note Cards– Mrs. Cole

7.         Introduction to Italian– Ms. Joly

8.         Irish Step Dancing–Tory Z. ‘12

9.         Learn to Draw with Gold: Medieval Illuminated Manuscripts– Mrs. Pluta

10.       The Many Layers of Rome– Mrs. Kenna

11.       Philosophy and Dr. Seuss– Ms. Salls

12.       Pilates– Ms. Moretto

13.       Quick and Easy Part Dips– Mrs. McDonough

14.       Recycling Tee-Shirts: Scarves – Mrs. Havey

15.       Stage Make-Up: Fantasy and Horror – Mrs. Carey

16.       Tea: A History of Britain – Ms. Pluta

17.       The Great College Interview – Ms. Ortiz

Meanwhile, September 22nd was a day for class bonding in the Middle School.  The 6th grade went to Hemlock Center for outdoors team-building activities.  The 7th grade performed service at the RiverBend Nature Center; this year they cleaned out portions of the river.  The 8th grade went to Harper’s Ferry for whitewater rafting and other water-based team projects.  The class bonding trips were a great chance for the girls to get to know each other better and work together for common goals.

Photos from the 6th Grade Bonding Trip to Hemlock Center:

Miss Pompeii summarized her experience from the 7th grade service trip to River Bend Park:

“The class of 2017 had a wonderful time at River Bend Park on their class bonding trip!  The 7th grade class was absolutely FABULOUS!  We could not have asked for a more positive, cooperative, and enthusiastic attitude from the wholeclass.  They were enthusiastic about helping to clean and save the environment and looked for trash without needing to be asked.  They graciously helped each other out when someone needed a hand. They did a great job practicing their cheer, which kept getting better with every practice!  They also wholeheartedly went on a nature scavenger hunt and looked for leaves, twigs, acorns, seeds, and yes!  Even pinecones!  (You will have to ask a seventh grader about that one!)  Many thanks to all who helped organize and chaperone the trip.”

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Filed under Academics, Clubs, Liberal Arts, Mini-Courses, School Traditions, Student Life