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SJP Winter Break 2017 Trip: Germany & the Alps

During the 2017 February Break, 13 St. John’s Prep students and 4 faculty members (lead by Ms. Lojo and including Ms. O’Hagan, Ms. Radus, and Mr. Turano) embarked on an amazing trip to Germany and the Alps. For 8 magnificent days, the group from SJP took in beautiful historic sights, tried delicious European delicacies, and experienced European culture at its finest! It was a trip that all participants will remember fondly for years and years to come.

The first few days of the trip involved visiting the medieval German city of Rothenberg, a quick stopover in Nuremberg, and an extended stay in Munich. One of the things that Germany is still remembered for today is the tragic and traumatic roles it played in the Second World War and Holocaust. Students and teachers were given the unique opportunity to learn about how the Nazis were able to rise to power in Germany while visiting the Nazi Documentation Center & Party Rally Grounds in Nuremberg. As a follow up several days later, the group also visited Dachau, the first Concentration Camp used by the Nazis to eliminate various “enemies of the regime” during the Holocaust. These somber and eye-opening experiences had tremendous impacts on all of the participants.

The trip was not only filled with World War II history lessons however. The group from SJP also experienced the architectural and cultural charms of Salzburg in Austria. From Mozart to the Sound of Music, members of the group came to appreciate the splendors of Austrian life and tradition. The group also braved the ice and snow when summiting Mount Rigi, an imposing peak in the Alps just outside of Lucerne, Switzerland. After a few hours in that winter wonderland, the group also had the opportunity to relax and unwind during the Carnival celebration down in Lucerne’s city center. The music, dancing, and care free spirit was enough put a big smile on everyone’s face.

The fabulous week in Europe wrapped up with a quick visit to the Rhine Falls in Germany’s Black Forest and a day in Heidelberg. Overall, the entire group had an excellent time. It would not be surprising if this trip inspired both students and faculty members alike to embark on more European adventures in the future!