40th Reunion Recap
Well, for those of you that weren't able to make it, you missed a wonderful weekend of renewed acquaintances, good food, nostalgic entertainment, and awakened memories.
Friday morning started at 8:30 a.m. with Marcia and Raymond Monroe, Mike Norman, Joe Lockhart and Wayne Kirk shucking 25 dozen ears of corn. Later in the morning the decorating crew showed up. PeeWee Fielder, surrounded and assisted by six women, proceeded to get started on the decorations. With PeeWee's guidance and supervision, Nancy Gilchrist Lowers (who was really in charge of decorations), Vicki Crites Haden, Charlotte Swain Clinton, Marcia Farnsworth Monroe, Phyllis Knicely Rowley, and Sharon Cline got the tables decorated for the evening's event. Mike Norman, Larry Clinton, and Raymond Monroe went to Sam's Club and purchased the meat, water and sodas. Cathi Thoma Cummins was in charge of getting the cookies and making the hot dog sauce. Charlotte Clinton made the cole slaw. Cathi was also in charge of getting the porta potties. The Bud beer truck arrived, parked and awaited the evening's crowd. Finally everyone went home to shower (thank heavens :)
Friday evening's event was held at the Buzzie Dils picnic shelter located along the river just north of the Grand Central Mall. There's a small deck that looks out over the river with picnic tables, a swing, a nice breeze, and a wonderful view. All the tables under the big shelter were decorated with red and white checked tablecloths, some tables with white lanterns and some with flower pots of red flowers. The registration table, also decorated in red and white, housed the name tags, directories, and a special memorial poster and a boquet of white carnations in memory of our deceased classmates. "Misty of Chincoteague", the original painting by Steve Jackson and donated by him to the class to be auctioned off on Sat night, was on display all evening.
The registration table was 'manned' by Nancy Gilchrist Lowers, Vicki Crites Haden, Betty Ball Tice and Sharon Cline. The evening started out with a rush-hour problem at the sign-in desk (a problem we promise to have fixed for the 2005 Reunion) but smoothed into an enjoyable evening. As people checked in, they received their class directory, their name tags, a memento PHS key ring, and tickets for the door prize drawings.
Much visiting, renewing acquaintences, much trying to figure out who was who, and a lot of catching up on the last 40 years took place while eating hamburgers, hot dogs, baked beans, potato salad, cole slaw, corn on the cob and veggies served up by Marcia, Raymond, Mike Norman, Cindy Schlarb, John Bays and Wayne Kirk.
During the break between the DJ and the evening's special entertainment, Mike Thomas manned the microphone thanking the committee and then asked for a moment of silence in memory of our deceased classmates. The announcement of the upcoming entertainment was followed by the drawing for the door prizes. A signed print of PHS painted, signed and donated by Rebecca Dils Rogers was won by Sally Flinn Jones. Tom Stahl prints were won by Ray Morey, Wayne Kirk and Rick Atkinson. A box of Holls' Chocolates was won by Nina Porter Cheuvront. Growing Up with Dick and Jane, Learning and Living the American Dream, written by Carole Kismaric and Marvin Heiferman, donated and autographed by Carole Kismaric, Class of 60, and Marvin Heiferman was won by Ruth Ann Taylor Barry. A River to Cross: The Bicentennial History of Wood County, WV, written and autographed by Phil Sturm, Class of 60, was won by Noreena Schofield. This was a special edition #160 donated by the Wood County Commissioner's office. We then invited Alice Widman, author of our school song, to lead us in singing the Alma Mater. They made us sing it twice 'cause we didn't sing it loud enough the first time.
We were then entertained by Elvis who sang songs that brought back many memories. Elvis took quite a liking to Janet KIDD Goff and towards the end of his performance, wrapped his red scarf around her neck, leaving her with a nice momento of the evening. Elvis, who was actually Steve Sams (Priss SAMS Sands nephew) provided a wonderful spot of entertainment.
During Elvis' performance, Marcia and Cathi, our raffle gals, passed thru the crowd selling tickets for a chance to win a print of PHS by William Goebel, a WV artist. The print was won by Kathy Cunningham Suck. The raffle cleared $175 for the class reunion fund.
This was all followed by more music by the DJ, more dancing, and more visiting. After things wound down and the classmates had departed, the cleanup committee finished up the evening about midnight and departed for home to grab a little sleep before Saturday's events.
Note of interest - Coach and Mrs. Sam Mandich joined us for most of the evening.
A group of us (we forgot to count) met at the school Saturday morning, parked on the horseshoe and entered the senior doors for a tour of the high school. We were led to the auditorium by the current principal, Mr Niday, and were treated to a recap of some of the changes that have taken place over the last 40 years, stories that brought back some sweet and bittersweet memories, given some information about the Alumni Association and the work they do to benefit the school, and informed of some of the upcoming changes that are planned (like air conditioning - finally) for the school. One thing that was evident in Mr. Nidday's talks - the pride and respect that we all felt as a class is still there among the other alumni groups that have come back for the tour, as well as present in the current students. It was refreshing to hear that there have been no knife or gun incidents at the school. It was sad to hear, though, that the old tradition of not walking on the campus, is no longer a tradition.
Then the walk thru the hallways where we saw the renovations that had taken place - renovated bathrooms, a new library, new windows, a new airconditioned annex that houses the band and chorus room, and others. But there were the things that hadn't changed that brought back many menories. We then toured the field house and then on to the renovated football stadium. At the end of the tour, Mary Sue Davis Helmick presented a few of the memento PHS keyrings to Mr. Niday from our class as a small thanks for taking the time with us.
The ole place looks pretty darn good. It's good to note also, that the school is now on the Preservation List.
Saturday evening's event was held at the Parkersburg Country Club off 51st Street in Vienna. Cathi Cummins and Charlotte Clinton were in charge of decorations for Saturday. We were treated to a large sign welcoming us to the PHS 40th Class Reunion as we entered towards the registration table. Inside, red table cloths, round mirrors under boquets of red and white carnations decorated each table.
The registration table was staffed by Nancy Lowers, Vicki Haden, Alice Widman and Sharon Cline. Checking in went much smoother on Sat night and everyone was registered and inside in short order. We received a phone call from Mark Moore offering his regrets at not being able to make the reunion. He sent greetings to all his classmates and assured us he will make better preparations for the 2005 reunion. Coach and Mrs. Sam Mandich were also present for a short while.
We were very shortly treated to a table full of heavy hors d'oeuvres and sides of turkey and roast beef. The food was abundant and wonderful. There was a cash bar set up in the back room that overlooked the pool.
As we made our way back to our tables from the buffet table, we were serenaded by the sound of the 60's performed by The Sidemen. Later, the dance floor was full of dancers enjoying the old tunes. As was the case Friday night, there was more visiting, renewing acquaintences, more trying to figure out who was who (well we looked different all cleaned up :), and more catching up on the last 40 years. During one of the band's breaks, Tom Enoch welcomed us all and introduced Jamie Snider, the committee chairman. Jamie introduced and thanked all the committee members. He then turned the microphone over to Charles Casto, a representative of the PHS Alumni Association. He presented us with an overview of the organization and told us how we could help the Association with our donations. Jamie then gave out the evenings door prizes. A print of PHS painted by Rebecca Dils Rogers (donated by Sharon Cline), was won by Don Patterson. Tom Stahl prints were won by John Shultz, Ed Schlarb, and Rosalie (CHEUVRONT) Wallace. Lowell Goff then took the microphone and shared his auctioneer talents in auctioning off the original painting by Steve Jackson, "Misty of Chincoteague". The bidding started out slow but quickly moved to a battle between Dick McCoy ("Who the hell is bidding against me?") and Marcia Monroe. Marcia persisted and $1,000 will be deposited in our Reunion Fund. Thanks Marcia and Raymond !!
The committee placed disposable cameras on the tables both nights for the classmates to snap pictures. Boy it's going to be interesting to see what pictures turn up on the web :)
The band played on and more dancing ensued. The evening began to wind down as the classmates departed with a load of weekend memories to tuck away with all those 40 year old memories.
40th Class Reunion was brought to you by your Reunion Committee, but was made a success by every classmate, spouse, and friend that attended! Start planning now for 2005!
Report submitted by Sharon Cline after many phone calls to Betty Tice and Marcia Monroe to get most of the facts right - but respects the right to claim 'senior moment' lapses if anything was omitted.