Well, here it is...the review of our GREAT 35th Reunion Weekend!
FRIDAY, August 7, 2009:
We converged on the Ohio Brewing Company about 6 pm, the perfect time for those of us
who worked all day. Lots of visiting was done before people wound down and had to head
Sorry to say there wasn't a sign-in sheet, that way we could know exactly how many
of us came to the Social.
I had a package of 100 name tags and ran out! (I wrote only a few for spouses or
significant others. The rest were for our classmates.)
Going thru the yearbook and counting, I talked to about 55 people from our class, minimum.
Let's see, I remember seeing the Kocher Twins, who were dressed alike, again. I was
VERY happy to see that they wore different hairstyles, though...I can tell you which
one is Kathy and which is Karol....FINALLY....after 35 years!! Thanks, Girls.
I chatted for quite a while with Chris Koerber, who came from Sierra Madre, right
outside of Pasadena, California, to see us.
Tayba Tahir stopped by my table and we talked a good long while.
There was Vickie Bondurant, and husband, Tommy Skinner, who was in the Ellet class of '73.
Also, I saw Diane Blair, who was on the 'Missing Classmates' list until she showed up for
Rick Dickey came from Philly, Jeff Morgan and wife, Donna, came all the way from Arizona.
And, Tony Barbieri came from Florida.
I saw SO many more people, I cannot even begin to tell you who was there.
We had SUCH a good time.....and we even had our very own Police Protection! Eddie Latchaw
was there!! Eddie walks a beat in downtown Akron. Being in uniform,
I imagine that he was still on duty. Thanks, Eddie, for taking the time to stop in and
say hello to everyone. It sure was nice to see he ignored all the revelers and
didn't arrest any of us!
We had a 50/50 raffle and Kevin Woods got $102 with his winning ticket.
In the last announcements before the reunion, I mentioned the Miche bag Susan Boyts
Pangburn gave us to raffle off. It is a convertible-type purse that is becoming all the
rage...women NEED this bag! Kathy Lomax was RABID when she didn't win!! LOL I gave her
Susan's card so maybe she can talk Susan out of another one! It was won by a
non-classmate, who had purchased her tickets before the reunion started.
The party started to break up around 11pm, I believe. Some folks decided they weren't
done 'reveling', so they headed out to that old Ellet watering hole, The Matador!!
Remember that place? It's now called the Ellet Sports Bar, but we'll forever know
it as The Matador! The Ellet class of '74 stayed until the joint closed, making for
a few headaches the next day....But, from what I have been told, a good time was
had by all...at The Matador AND at Ohio Brewing.
There have been no bad reports reach these ears....only good comments. For those who
didn't make it, I hope you will read these reports and feel the need to attend
the NEXT reunion or party for which we get together!
SATURDAY August 8, 2009:
We met at Mark and Candace Manning's house for the picnic this afternoon, in the rain.
But, a little rain couldn't stop the Ellet High School Class of 1974!!
Thirty eight people showed up with lawn chairs, and their beverage of choice.
Oh, and they brought food. Oh my goodness. There was food for DAYS! The tables were
heavily laden with food!! (How's THAT for 'old-world-speak'? LOL)
We chatted and we ate and we chatted some more.
I heard conversations about how much fun LAST night was down at the Ohio Brewing Company,
and also at The Matador afterwards.
As I said above, some brilliant scholar from our class suggested that those who wanted
to should meet at The Matador, ASAP, after leaving downtown.
Well, part of the Ellet Class of 1974 stayed until the place closed for the night. THIS
explains the bloodshot eyes and the dragging of the feet of so many classmates today!!
But, they came to the picnic!
And, why not? We have a great class and this was the first weekend since our 50th Birthday
Bash that we have gotten together.
I stayed where I could observe most of what was going on, and I must say, I saw nothing
but smiles and heard laughter, all day.
Even with the rain.
Several small canopies were put up so people could stay dry. The garage..... which is the
CLEANEST garage I have EVER seen.....was converted into a makeshift dining hall.
It only rained off and on, not continually, and about 4:30, the sun came out!!
So the burgers, hotdogs, and sausages were able to be cooked easily by Jay Gurnish,
who is Mark's cousin, next door neighbor, and member of Ellet's Class of '72.
Also cooking for us was Terry Dansby, one of Mark's longtime friends. He's "Uncle Terry",
to Mark and Candace's kids.
These fellas volunteered to do this, so no member of our class had to be tied to
the grill all day.
Jay EVEN made fresh cut french fries for us!!
They did a lot of work, and we were blessed they were there.
Thank you, Jay and Terry.
The pool is in the most beautiful setting and it is brand new...we were some of the first
to dive on in.
The whole property is so beautiful that you forget you're in Akron city limits
for a while.
Oh, and before I forget: The Classic Cars!! OMG! Were they spectacular! Now, don't ask me
what I saw...I cannot remember the names of them all, but Mark's collection is one to
die for.....Thanks, Mark, for showing your babies to us.
You SURE missed a lot, if you weren't able to come. And, if you DID come, wasn't it FUN???
I especially enjoyed watching someone who I will not name drink his wine and make
soap bubbles....you know the kind with the wand? Except HIS wand was about 2 feet in diameter!
The bubbles were so cool. And, from what I observed, so was the wine....ROFL!
It wasn't until I saw a photo that I realized he was keeping the children who attended
the party entertained!
Kevin Breth may have come the farthest to picnic with us: He lives in Seattle,WA nowadays.
He has lived in Martha's Vineyard and Hawaii. It's good to know where he finally landed
with wife, Donna, and their four daughters!
Today (Saturday), we had an impromptu raffle for a few items.
First was a Goodyear/NASCAR combination of collectables. They were won by Craig Somerville,
(who traveled from Atlanta, GA with his fiancee, Tanya, just to be with us this weekend).
Then, we raffled off one of Eric Pirogowicz' books that he wrote about the year in
which he turned 50. (What a great book!)
Sorry, but I cannot remember who won the book, or what the last thing raffled off was,
but for an impromptu thing, the whole kit and caboodle netted the Class Kitty another $80!!
(Friday night's raffles netted about $250 total.)
You go, Classmates! Feed that kitty so we can continue to have great weekends like
I cannot tell you how much fun the two reunion days were.
I hope all of you who came this weekend had as great a time as I did.
I truly appreciate those who came from so far away.
And, I hope all of you who couldn't make it, well, maybe you will be able to NEXT time.
Thanks, Mark and Candace, for opening your beautiful home to us for this big event.
We would never have had such a wonderful day if it hadn't been for you two.
Again, thank you.
Here's a pic taken while we still had some people at Mark's. Too bad we didn't think to do
this before 'anyone' left.
Notice Mark pulled out his ORANGE classic....just for us!
Here are the names of the people in the pic, left to right:
Cynthia Pirogowicz Sheeks, Bill McGurk, Laurie Gipson McElroy, Kathy Callahan Livak,
Jeff Morgan, Craig Somerville, Mark Manning, Kevin Breth, Garry Moneypenny,
Ron Graham (in front), Greg Westmeyer, Sue Pascu Midcap, Kevin Woods, Debbie Fitzhugh Richards,
Chris Koerber (adjusting sunglasses), Eric Pirogowicz, Vern Richards, and John Summers.
(I chose to sit this one out, so I am not in the photo.)
d-e b 09-12-09