Best Weekend Ever

Rhonda, Kathy, Laurie, and Anne.  NB 78

Rhonda, Kathy, Laurie, and Anne. NB 78

Still tired from last weekend’s festivities, I decided to quickly share my perspective on the weekend that included the NBHS Alumni Banquet on Friday and the NBHS class of 1978 35th class reunion.

Special thanks to Don and Tami Thomas, Sue and Jeff Miklovic, and Jill Guy for the hours of work that go into planning the Alumni Banquet.  Thanks to your labor of love, many of us had a chance to reconnect with old friends.  What a wonderful gift! 

Giving the alumni banquet speech was a great honor.  As I reflect on it, the most enjoyable part was listening to the cheers from the St. Luke’s Lutheran crowd every time I mentioned my childhood church.  I never thought I’d hear, “Rock on St. Luke’s!” at an alumni banquet.  It was a great pleasure to see some of the St. Luke’s faithful at the banquet highlighted by Lois Vanaman (’37) and June Blake.

I had a wonderful time after the banquet chatting with long lost friends at the Legion.  My favorite part was the liars’ table where four fishermen gathered:  Dave Stephens, Dave Casey, Byron Brown and Roger Cowan swapped fish stories all night.  Thanks to the advent of iPhones, many of the fishing tales were actually supported by photographic evidence.  I don’t think you could find four guys who love to fish more than that quartet.

On Saturday night, I quickly learned that Mike and Rhonda (Reynolds) Nye are the best host and hostess in town.  They were kind enough to open their home for our reunion.  They both have an easy, relaxed entertaining style that makes everyone feel included.  I can’t thank you enough for your hospitality.

More thanks to my monthly dinner buddies (Kathy Vermilya Cramer, Melody Blake Drewes, Sue Gerdeman Brim, Rhonda Reynolds Nye, and Laurie Brumbaugh Poland) who turned into a class reunion planning machine.  We were all reluctant in the beginning, and started late, but once we committed to it, there was no stopping us.  Mission accomplished, ladies!

Thanks also to our husbands:  Gary Cramer, Mark Drewes, Jerry Brim, Mike Nye, Jon Poland and Byron Brown who probably learned long ago that when we girls undertake a project, it is going to mean a lot of physical labor for them.  The guys were gracious enough to set up the tent, table and chairs on Thursday and clean up again on Sunday afternoon.  Thanks guys.  We love you.

We also learned that getting Julie Stephens Cowan to return to a reunion from Montana ensures the success of the event.   We were pretty proud that some of the big kids:  Sue Crouse (’76), Nancy Swartz (’76), Ginger Reichenbach Povenmire (’77), and Julie Waaland Holbein (’77) crashed our class reunion to chat with Julie Stephens Cowan.  Only the coolest reunions get crashed by the older kids!

We were also blessed to have another classmate, Anne Steiff Whiteman, travel a long distance from Texas to join us at the reunion.  Anne never missed a day of school so it’s no surprise that she never misses a class reunion.

One of my hypotheses was proven at the class reunion.  I have a theory that all of us who grew up in North Baltimore have an unhealthy fascination with fire.  I wonder if it was caused by exposure to those big tank farm fires in the 1960s.  Regardless of the cause, my theory was once again affirmed as the most fun activity of the class reunion was lighting Chinese lanterns on a windy night.  Luckily, this has been a wet summer so there was no collateral damage to local fields.

Unfortunately, my husband Byron had a very early flight on Sunday morning, so we had to head home early from the class reunion on Saturday night.  I was extremely happy to hear that our most committed classmates were still celebrating as we passed North Baltimore on the way to Detroit airport the next morning though.  All of those years of training has obviously paid off.

I guarantee that last weekend was the most action-packed weekend that I ever experienced in North Baltimore:  from the reunion preparation to the Alumni Banquet to the downtown SummerFest to the class reunion to the reunion clean-up, it was a long weekend.  Thanks to everyone who worked to plan the activities and to all of those who made time to join us.  It was perfect seeing so many familiar faces.  The weekend was the consummate celebration of everything that makes North Baltimore so special.  

Now I’m going to take a nap to recuperate.




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