I'm proud to announce that I'm handing out the 2024 Golden Chuckle, which is a new award for the April Fool's Day joke that actually made me laugh yesterday. I'm awarding it this year to The Hotchkiss School in Lakeville, for the submission "Hotchkissland' that you see above.

Even though I knew it was April 1, 2024 when I woke up yesterday, I still had to do a double take when I saw an official post on The Hotchkiss School's social media account, which says "Today, April 1(2024), we are making some upgrades to our campus. Make sure to check out the Bearcat coaster, the Merry-GO-BLUE-Round, and the Lake Wononscopomuc Water Slide!". Unfortunately, the statement from Hotchkiss concludes with '#aprilfools'.

I almost believed it at first glance, because the brilliant minds inside the Hotchkiss School are capable of building something as simple as an amusement park in a weekend, right? Lakeville's The Hotchkiss School was one of the nation's first English-style boarding schools when it was founded in 1891. The campus sits on 827 acres, and the closest most of us have been to it's classrooms are when we've driven by campus on our way to it's neighbors Lime Rock Park and the Interlaken Inn.

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According to wikipedia.com, tuition and fees for a 2023-2024 boarding student add up to just under $70,000 a year, an endowment of $606 million was reported in June of 2021. It's nice that there is a golf course winding it's way through campus Hotchkiss School, but maybe it is time to consider a 'London Eye'-sized ferris wheel?

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Gallery Credit: Lou Milano

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