Reunion on the News

The Garfield Heights (Ohio) High School Class of 1969 had a Cleveland WKYC TV news crew come to their picnic reunion to shoot a short video. It was shown to surprise their classmate, Bruce Kalinowski, a weatherman at the station, who had to work that night. See the video on Reunions magazine’s facebook page.

The class has had reunions for three years. There was a 60th birthday reunion when everyone turned 60, then a casual picnic reunion, and finally a clambake. Clambakes are common in the fall in the Cleveland area, so lots of classmates come from out of town.

The class works together, but mainly one person handles finances with the approval of at least one other classmate. We have an account into which they place money made at each reunion. Occasionally they get help from classmates and volunteers who have special skills like decorations, etc.

Jan Wendling works closely with Metro Parks in the area to determine discounted times and dates throughout the year. They look for features like electricity, bathroom conveniences, and parking. Metroparks takes reservations in January and they fill up fast. The reunion wants to get first chance at a good pavilion that meets their needs.

Communication is via website, word-of-mouth, mail, email, newspapers and facebook. The website is for future information and updates about upcoming reunions.

Reunion-goers receive name tags bearing their pictures from high school.

They play a game or two, have a white elephant exchange, get updates about classmates, and always have a cake. They toast to another year of being together, and they toast those who have passed on.

The next reunion will be a pig roast.

Reported by Jan Wendling, Maple Heights, Ohio