Opinion: Reunions. company picnics popping up around the area

Class reunions and business picnics are popular events during late spring and early summer and I had the privilege to attend one of each lately.

The Mounties graduates are great about inviting Lamont and me to their reunion dinners. Jay Herrlein, past Mount Pleasant High School Alumni president, extended the welcome to us again this year.

We sat at a table with Dorothy and William Harr and he had the servers, Nancy DiLorretta and Mary Haught, laughing over his constant requests for ice cream to go with his pie. As a matter of fact, they remembered him from the previous year when he kept asking for the frosted topping for his pie as well.

We seemed to get off on the wrong foot with the servers as we could not get the first serving of coffee. Since we were overlooked the first time, they were at our beck and call for anything we wanted after that.

I mentioned that I liked the foccacia bread and pepperoni rolls served with the dinner and a bag of the bread was brought out to me just before we left to go home.

The classmates had a busy day as a memorial for a wall erected at the site of the former Mount Pleasant High School was held at 1 p.m. Herrlein gave the memorial speech and Jess Warren gave the invocation.

The alumni knows how to budget money. They had raised $10,000 for the memorial walk, with inscribed bricks that were sold to classmates, but only used $9,000.

Herrlein presented $1,000 scholarships each to five Buckeye Local graduates: Mirranda Buck, Michael Carducci, Joshua Figurski, Zachary Malesky and Derek Sebring.

The Rev. Bryon McElroy presented Warren with an outstanding alumni award for community service and Ronald Thompson presented the same community service award to his brother, Donald Thompson.

Ronald Thompson presented the sports hall of fame awards to outstanding Mountie athletes or their survivors: Coach Richard Elliott , Richard Thompson, James Thompson and Richard Rector Jr. were the football, basketball and baseball stars who put Mount Pleasant on the map.

A celebration was held in recognition of the classes of 1944, 1949, 1954, 1959 and 1969. Special recognition was given to the class of 1964, with Martha Rinkes Packer, Cynthia Schneider-Kelly, Sharon Denger Cush, Mary Garbesi, Jamie Hardy Hilligas, Ruth Knutson Holler, Raymond Kovalski, Leon Leiser, Leanna Baldwin DeNeale, Sharon Friend, Kenneth Simeral and Dennis Walker recognized.

On the most beautiful Sunday we have had in a long time, we attended the Timet employees and retirees picnic held at Kennywood Park. Lamont was searching for past or present employees that he still remembered and that included Patty Doyle and her husband and my former boss, Chris Doyle; Shawn Muscara; Dan Phillips; Paul Howard Jr.; Darrin Judy; Rodney Jenkins; and Jerry Robertson, whose mother, Dorothy, is fan of my column. So I will give her a shout out.

I was surprised when someone yelled my name on the midway. That person is someone I see each working day, Linda Brown, customer services supervisor. We hugged and it was sort of squishy as we had both been on the Log Jam just minutes before.

Yes, I did get Lamont to ride some of the attractions. I got in back of him and curled down almost in a fetal position to keep water from getting my shirt too wet on the log ride.

On the racing cars, I was the driver and as we were approaching the end of the ride, the mischievous young attendant must have seen that I could be easily fooled as he yelled, “Stop the car, stop the car. You are going to run into someone.”

I was hunting around with my foot to find a brake that I had not found on the cruise around the track and must have worn a desperate look on my face. He started laughing and stopped the car himself.

The floor boards of the cars were so deep my short legs would not reach the platform without stepping on the seat and by using a helping hand from the prankster.

Something coming up on Saturday is the Region 12 Progressive Lunch and Garden Tour. Jodi Russell tells me that it starts at the home of Darwin and Linda Burge, Dillonvale Rosebud Garden Club, at 9 a.m. for coffee; next is Jodi’s home in Toronto at 11 a.m. for salads.

She is regional director and Rosebud and Woodland member.

The home of Eleanor Drazich, Woodland, is at 1 p.m. for sandwiches. Marilou Rupert, Four Seasons, will have dessert at her home at 3:30 p.m.

This is a progressive luncheon tour and reservations are needed by June 25. RSVP to Jodi at (740) 537-2862.