Wrong children’s game: Snowball Fight Turns Into Race Brawl

Cole Harbour District High School is located in the province of Nova Scotia, on the east coast of…

Cole Harbour District High School is located in the province of Nova Scotia, on the east coast of Canada. Back in the winter of 1989, what started as a playful snowball fight between groups of grade 10 boys turned ugly as white students ended up fighting black students in a vicious brawl.


Apparently, the brawl was triggered when a, “…particularly large snowball showered one group with snow…”

Wrong children's game: Snowball Fight Turns Into Race Brawl
Wrong children’s game: Snowball Fight Turns Into Race Brawl

Christa Webber, a grade 10 student at the time, who witnessed the brawl, said she saw a student’s face “…split open” from a punch and students getting kicked when they fell to the ground.

In the aftermath, 14 were charged and the brawl led directly to the government of Nova Scotia creating the Black Learners Advocacy Committee. The committee, “…highlighted inequities in education for the African-Nova Scotian learner.” As well, “The BLAC report resulted in the hiring of cross-cultural understanding co-ordinators and African-Nova Scotian support workers in the province’s schools.”

30 years later, the brawl still haunts former Cole Harbour District High School student, Corey Beals. Though, he didn’t witness the brawl triggering snowball, Beals remains sad about the incident and feels it has had a lasting impact on the community, “Unfortunately, Cole Harbour has been scarred. Ever since. Thirty years later. And whenever there is an incident that takes place at that school everyone reflects back to 1989.”

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