Four young alumni reunited with their former teachers Sarah Berkey and Claire Concannon to share with Upper School students their experiences in service work here and abroad. Steffanie Triller '99 spoke of her time as a missionary in Africa; Shaneah Taylor '01 discussed her work in public health in South America and Africa; and Katherine Schwer '03 told students of her time teaching English in France and South Korea. Students also learned about forensic accounting from an alumnus who works as an auditor for the U.S. Department of Justice; he asked that we not publicize his name for confidentiality reasons.
Dedication of the Warren Crist '63 Lettermen's Room
Warren Crist's wife, Mary Jane Crist, welcomed 43 family members and guests to this gala event where we joined the Crist family in celebrating the newly renovated and remodeled Lettermen's Room. Warren's sister Josephine Crist Kirk '71 and brother Robert Crist '70 and his wife Bonnie, all from Arizona, were in attendance with a lovely dedication given by Warren's classmate Gus Newberg '64. Also in attendance were friends and classmates Jack Borok '64, Fred Montgomery '64, and Peter van der Steere '63.
Mary Jane's extraordinary vision of the room includes floor to ceiling built-in cherry cabinetry and library shelves, granite counter, appliances, a SMART Board and projector, sound system, large conference tables and chairs, updated lighting, carpeting, an exercise area, new HVAC system and energy-efficient windows and shades.
Its multi-purpose, beautiful design and historical decorations will serve and inspire many generations of Morgan Park Academy students.
The 1961 Grill
Reunion committee leaders, Robin Guilford '61, Ed Rund '61, Bill Springer '61 and Jim Mitchell '61 rallied many of their classmates and their guests to this special event in the Arts Center, where they all swapped tales of the good old days. Reunion books were displayed, as well as tours in the Academy museum before dinner and memory book with current contact information of their classmates were distributed.
The Class of 1961 was met by the Head of School, Dr. Catherine Raaflaub, and members of her administrative staff with a compelling state-of-school address.
The 1971 Cocktail Party at the Home of Bill '71 and Leslie Shimmin Hickey '72
Bill and Leslie Hickey welcomed a significant number of their classmates and their teachers from the '71 era to their home on Friday evening.
They decided that their teachers look as good if not better than the students of 40 years ago! It was fun for the classmates and teachers to swap stories of classroom antics and conveniently forgotten mishaps. The celebration went on to the wee hours of the next morning.
Alumni Meet & Greet and Alumni Faculty Roundtable
The launch of the Alumni Council in the Library was led by new Board chair Leslie Shimmin Hickey '72, and executive co-chairs Susan Shimmin Trefil '66 and Steve Nelson '73. In attendance were alumni from 1961 celebrating their 50th reunion as well as other members from the class of '71 and '74 plus 10 alumni faculty members.
The by-laws as well as the vision and the mission of the council were discussed. The Meet and Greet was followed by a roundtable with alumni faculty and prompted by such questions as "So what really happened when the kids went home?" and other questions of more serious themes of culture, education and school climate.
Athletic Walk of Fame Reception and Induction
Our 2011 inductees and their 80-plus guests were welcomed to the new Warren Crist '63 Lettermen's Room on Saturday afternoon, where they congregated to enjoy wine and cheese, yearbooks, sports memorabilia, videos and stories.
The induction ceremony took place in the newly renovated Bitta Gymnasium honoring those outstanding individuals and teams for their athletic performance, dedication, and sportsmanship. Those honored were the Bernard Reichel '36, Warren Crist '63, Howard Meyer '64, George Kumis '66, Christine Linnerud '01, coach Tom Drahozal and the 1990-91 Boys' Basketball Team. Following the ceremony everyone gathered around the new Spirit Circle outside the gymnasium where their bricks will be installed.
Alumni, guests and alumni faculty came to celebrate with a banquet in Alumni Hall. Laughter and cheers echoed through the dining hall. The dining bell rang and everyone immediately knew what to do. The fellas still pulled the chairs out for their favorite girl. Ed Rund, President of the Class of 1961, gave the prayer before dinner. Gone was the chipped beef!
Supper was followed by gracious speeches from Dr. Catherine Raaflaub, Head of School, and Jim Mitchell '61, our Board of Trustees Chair, followed by a reunion video. We retired to the Mancini Library for after dinner drinks, class photos, yearbooks and more stories to share.
Day at the Races, Arlington Park
Alumnus Dick Duchossois '40 graciously lent us his penthouse suite at Arlington Park. Alumni from different eras and their guests came to have a lunch and see how well they could do with the ponies. A highlight was when Dick and his wife came through the room and greeted each of us and wished us luck and good times. Indeed, we all had a marvelous time with what has become a favorite Homecoming weekend event.
Click the image below to view photos from Homecoming 2010.