My Corner, Your Corner: Strolling memory lane with others who lived there

My Corner, Your Corner - Tony Callaio | September 10th, 2016 8:06 am

Just when I started losing faith with my high school graduating class, it all changed last weekend.

When my dad organized his class reunions, he had a committee to help and it was usually the same people each five years that would have duties to carry out and everything ran like clockwork.

My class has had reunions since its 10th anniversary. It’s possible we attempted a five-year reunion, but I can’t recall. I didn’t even attend our 10th anniversary reunion.

In the past, we’ve had sit-down dinner parties and get dressed up with a DJ to provide entertainment, but this year, we changed it up a bit. Instead of dinner, we had finger foods and we dropped the DJ and played music from the era we graduated on a laptop.

Over the years, our reunions decreased in attendance, with the highest attendance being 60 classmates in total. Ten years ago, that dropped down to 15 and five years ago, we didn’t even have a reunion.

I’m a believer in class reunions. It’s one of those events that are a true time capsule that is living and breathing. It’s one of the few chances to go down memory lane with those that lived it at the same time. Granted, not everyone will remember the same things and even if they do, it would be through different eyes, but in the end, it’s still a shared moment.

Who doesn’t like to reminisce? I believe as people get older, they love to look back on what once was. I’ve covered a lot of class reunions and it seems the further people are from the year they graduated, the more likely they are to attend. I guess they start to appreciate the past.

As an organizer of our reunion this time around, I wanted it to be a no-frills event that kept the cost down. After all, no matter how successful people are, most like to save a buck.

Without a dinner, my goal was to have everyone mingle, and they did. Not many sat during the entire four hours. As a matter of fact, I would have taken out a few tables to create more mingle room.

Oh and the music? What music? There was so much chatter and laughter, the music was pretty much drowned out. Later in the evening, I wanted to turn up the volume on the music and a classmate ran over and asked if I could turn it down so she could talk and not yell.

I had no problem with that request, especially since one of my goals was to create more conversation and less distraction.

Seeing so many classmates that I haven’t seen in years, and some not since graduation, was great fun. There were a few classmates that admitted they were nervous about the event and didn’t know what to expect.

After 15 to 30 minutes into the reunion the laughter began and I could tell all walls were down.

In the end, 78 classmates responded to the invitation, and five did not make it to the event. Out of 315 classmates, 30 are deceased. I was quite pleased with the showing. Mission accomplished!

Congratulations Amanda

Last week I wrote about my first journey to the West Coast and my visit with model/actress and Wyoming Area graduate Amanda Booth at her Los Angeles home. It was a blast and I’m thrilled for all of her success. There’s plenty more to come, for sure.

This week Amanda notified family and friends that she and her son Micah are featured on the October cover of Parents magazine.

Two-year-old Micah was born with Down syndrome. Amanda and her husband Mike Quinones have learned so much about children with Down syndrome and have applied it to parenting Micah. The family is very health conscience, eating as natural as possible.

They have and will continue to give Micah the best chance for the healthiest life possible. Parents magazine’s slogan is, “Happy kids, healthy families.”

Quote of the week

“America’s future will be determined by the home and the school. The child becomes largely what he is taught; hence we must watch what we teach, and how we live.” – Jane Addams, American social worker

Thought of the week

“Wit penetrates; humor envelopes. Wit is function of verbal intelligence; humor is imagination on good nature.” – Peggy Noonan, American journalist

Bumper sticker

“The past cannot be cured.” – England’s Queen Elizabeth I
Amanda Booth, a Wyoming Area graduate formerly of West Pittston, holds her 2-year-old son Micah on the October cover of Parents magazine. Booth, a Wyoming Area graduate formerly of West Pittston, holds her 2-year-old son Micah on the October cover of Parents magazine. Submitted photo

My Corner, Your Corner

Tony Callaio

Tony Callaio’s column My Corner, Your Corner runs weekly in the Sunday Dispatch. He can be reached at