To escape the Brisbane heat this summer, Old Boy Bruce Chater (1973) with wife Anne and their three sons Ben (2004), Cameron (2005) and Daniel (2008), took to the ski slopes in Hakuba, Japan. What started as a family holiday quickly resembled a Churchie Old Boys reunion. As the owner of The Boarding Co., a ski rental business, Old Boy Bill Beresford (1982) was on hand to provide a warm welcome and generous ‘mates rates’ for their ski rental requirements. That’s where two of our newest Old Boys stepped in. Working on a ‘graduation program‘ with Bill, Max Hyne (2016) and Henry Lennon (2016) fitted the Chater family with the appropriate equipment for their tour of the back country. Guided by Australian Olympic skier Steve Lee, the boys enjoyed powder that seemed to swallow them as they boarded through it.

Bill says that Max and Henry have worked out so well that he is keen to recruit a couple of Old Boys each year and make it a Churchie graduates program of sorts, so stay tuned. “Max and Henry have performed a range of duties from cleaning windows on scaffolding to washing dishes in two restaurants nearly every night. They have also learnt how to clean toilets, cook basic meals, clear snow for three hours per day and leave the kitchen clean, or face – not some detention, but the threat of being sent home.”

The boys have also learnt how to fit and operate ski and snowboard equipment from beginners to back country customers. Beyond that Max and Henry have been out snowboarding most days, had level 1 powder clinics with “Uncle“ (that’s Bill) and fresh powder sessions with just themselves. Meeting pro surfers Mick Fanning and Matt Wilkinson was a highlight of their stay. They also managed to spend time in Bill’s timber workshop building their own powder snowboards as a take home memento of their ‘holiday’ in Hakuba.

Pictured Above (L-R): Cameron Chater (2006), Max Hyne (2016), Henry Lennon (2016), Ben Chater (2004), Daniel Chater (2008)

Pictured Below: Bill (centre) with one of his best mates from boarding school days, Jeff Gurney (1982), pictured left. Jeff and his family also spent a well-earned break in Hakuba.