Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Come Together ; All-Class School Reunions Unite the Masses

Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Come Together ; All-Class School Reunions Unite the Masses

Article excerpt

George Washington High School graduates of all ages were invited to get together earlier this month during the school's first all- class reunion. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the first class to graduate George Washington and "a couple of us thought it was fitting to commemorate that, Beth Kearns, a 1972 GW graduate, said of the Aug. 1 event.

The reunion was held at the Charleston Civic Center. Vintage memorabilia of the football team was on sale as a fundraising effort.

All-class reunions are not a new trend, Kearns said. Some schools that have been consolidated hold these forms of reunions. Schools from Nitro and Dunbar will hold all-class reunions.

"I took to Facebook and asked for a representative from each class to step forward to contact their classmates, Kearns said. With their efforts, Kearns and her support team brought about 500 people to the Civic Center. The Facebook page generated over 1,000 "likes, she said.

Graduates from classes ranging from 1965 to 2009 attended the event, she said.

Multiple all-class reunions have been held at the Civic Center during its time, said Joe Varney, event coordinator for the venue.

Coordinators are drawn to these kinds of reunions because they're easy, Varney said. One all-class reunion has one point of contact for those who are interested in participating and there is only one committee.

The reunions are very well attended, he said, saying that an average of 600 come to each event. Many of the older attendees come to the event hours before it's supposed to begin, and will leave not long after the event has started.

"The younger ones are the last to leave and will keep dancing until the lights come on, he said.

The all-class reunions will attract classmates who have moved to far away states such as California and even Alaska, Kearns said.

In one Dunbar High School reunion, Varney remembers a plaque that was given to a former classmate's mother in honor of her son who was killed in the line of duty in 1986. …

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