Saturday, September 29, 2007

Ice Breaker

The Ice Breaker at the White House Diner was a big success last night and it was great to see everyone there. Everyone was having lots of fun. Bruce Cottle downloaded pictures from several of the digital cameras and burned some CDs for us. I looked over the 150+ photos briefly and uploaded them here.

For those of you that couldn't make it, I hope these photos will give you a virtual sense of what it was like at the ice breaker.

Mark Hession and the reunion committee did an excellent job at making everyone feel welcome and provided more than enough food and drinks to feed an army. Thanks to all who pitched in to help out in the preparation and clean up activities!

I look forward to seeing all of you again tonight at the reunion.

[update 10/03/2007] I've since uploaded the reunion photos there too. They are password protected so please email me if you've forgotten the password.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Bee's mom

As some of you may know, Bee Harris Darrow's mom has been fighting cancer for some time. She passed away on Monday.

Thanks to Maryellen for providing this information:

I spoke to Bee this afternoon, she called me when she returned from the funeral home to give me the arrangements that have been made.

The wake and funeral will be held at:

Kopecki Funeral Home
263 Zerby Ave.
Kingston, PA 18704

Wake service will be Wednesday from 6:00pm - 9:00pm. Funeral Service from the funeral home on Thursday at 9:00 am with a Mass of Christian Burial from St. Ignatius Church, Kingston, PA on Thursday at 9:30 am.

The funeral announcement will be in the local papers.
Links to the local papers are:

Bee and her family are staying at her mothers home:

388 Schuyler Ave.
Kingston, PA 18704

At the request of the family, donations may be made to

Hospice Care of the VNA Inc.
Inpatient Unit
Heritage House
80 E. Northampton Street
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18701

This is the hospice unit that Mary Anne Harris was at when she passed away.

Thanks again,

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Another found soul

Karen Leonardi should be a private investigator. When I first started working with Karen on the 2002 reunion, I was amazed that she had a complete list of graduates along with addresses and phone numbers for most of us. I figured she must have gotten them from Bishop OíReilly. I know the nice people at OíReilly always were able to find me, especially around fund raising time, so I figured they had some special way of keeping track of us. However, when we attempted to put together a list for this reunion, I found that Karenís list, which was 5 years old, was actually much more complete than the one that I got from Bishop OíReilly which was missing about half of the current addresses. It was then that I realized the extent of Karenís talent in tracking people down.

In a period of 5 years, people tend to move around, and many of you have done just that. In addition, people change email addresses like they change their clothing these days so the Internet hasnít always been the asset one might assume in keeping track of all of you. So a lot of work goes into tracking down individuals. And this very much follows a sort of 95/5 rule where we spend 95% of our time trying to find the last 5% of our class members.

One of the people we were not successful in finding for the 25th reunion, and that was still on our missing persons list for this reunion, was Ann Marie Yatsko. That was true until Friday. Karen managed to track her down here in Colorado. She lives about 50 miles from me. Iíve exchanged some email with her and found that she was living for 6 years in Utah and then moved to Colorado about a year ago. Her husband, Al Manzi, is the President and Publisher of the Boulder Camera newspaper. The Boulder Camera main office is on Pearl Street which is within walking distance of Kati Wood Gardnerís house in Boulder (less than 2 miles). Ann Marieís husband Al was also Rick Leandriís college roommate in Bloomsburg. So there were a lot of small world moments experienced on Friday.

Unfortunately, Ann Marie wonít be able to make it to the reunion since sheís having company visiting from PA, but now that weíve found her again, we hope that sheíll be able to make it to the next one.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Getting to the reunion

View Larger Map

Here are some directions that Michael has provided:

The easiest directions to R & D Memories on Saturday night are: Drive to the Crossroads in Hanover. Take the Sans Souci Highway towards Pizza Hut and McDonald's, at the first light past them, turn right on Fellows Avenue. R & D Memories is located less than a half mile away on the left. The address is 566 Fellows Avenue.

The directions to the Crossroads in Hanover are as follows: about a mile from the Carey Ave. Bridge from Plymouth, or from Carey Ave in South Wilkes-Barre or turn left on Oxford St. from South Main Street in Wilkes-Barre (about a mile from the intersection of South Main St. and Blackman St). Finally, from Nanticoke, turn left onto Fellows Ave. heading towards the Crossroads.

Lee's additions:

After looking over the map it appears that the most important thing you need to remember is that Fellowes Ave is just off the San Souci Parkway. Hanover Crossroads is really just an intersection of two roads, but the names of both roads change at the intersection. The road that crosses the Carey Ave bridge from Plymouth is called West End Road, but it changes to Oxford Street east of the Hanover Crossroads. Similarly Carey Avenue turns into the San Souci Parkway as it heads south from the Hanover Crossroads.

If you get lost, the phone number for R&D Memories is (570) 970-5683.

Monday, September 17, 2007

No meeting Thursday night

In the latest Newsgram (#6) I sent out yesterday, Michael mentioned that there would be a reunion planning meeting this Thursday at the Bakehouse near Kingston Corners and anyone who wanted to could stop by. However, he found out later that no one on the committee could make it, so there will not be a meeting. He asked me to put it in the Blob (sic). :-)

I think he meant to write Blog. But with Michael, I can't tell if it was a typo or if it was a his sense of humor....

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Hotels in and around Wilkes-Barre

For those of you traveling in from out of town who need a hotel, Michael Kinney has put together this list for us:

Downtown Wilkes-Barre

Ramada Inn
20 Public Square
Wilkes Barre, PA 18701

Best Western Genetti Hotel & Conference Center
77 East Market Street
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18701
570-825-6477 or 800-833-6152

Near the Wyoming Valley Mall

Holiday Inn Wilkes-Barre (Arena)
880 Kidder Street
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702

Hosts Inn
860 Kidder Street
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702
570-270-4678 or 866-733-4678

Days Inn Wilkes Barre
I-81 Exit 170B
760 Kidder Street
Wilkes Barre, PA, 18702

Above the Wyoming Valley Mall
These are all within two miles of the Mohegan Sun Casino at Pocono Downs, if youíre interested in gambling.

Red Roof Inn Wilkes-Barre
I-81 at SR 309 Business, exit #170-B
1035 Highway 315
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702

The Woodlands Inn & Resort
1073 Highway 315
Wilkes Barre, PA 18702
570-824-9831 or 800-762-2222

Best Western East Mountain Inn & Suites
2400 East End Boulevard - Route 115
(Exit 170A off I-81)
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702

Hilton Garden Inn Wilkes-Barre

242 Highland Park Boulevard
Wilkes Barre, PA 18702

There are two located off exit 165 of I-81, on Route 309 and Blackman Street

Comfort Inn & Suites
1067 Wilkes-Barre Twp Blvd
Wilkes Barre, PA 18702

Econo Lodge Arena
1075 Wilkes-Barre Twp. Blvd. SR 309
Wilkes Barre, PA 18702

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The Hlavacs

Laura Canfield and I were exchanging some emails and wondering about some other classmates and Nancy Hlavac's name came up. I didn't think our address for her was correct, because we grew up on the same street and it seemed like we had her parents' address. Laura reminded me that she had a sister, MaryBeth, a year behind us at BOR so I started a Google search for her and found what appeared to be a recent email address. So I emailed her on the hope that we could have her help track down Nancy.

During the search, I found a recent article from the Times Leader (which has subsequently aged off the website) but thanks to Google's cache, here it is:

In honor of the love that their parents share, the children and grandchildren of Mr. and Mrs. William Hlavac of Swoyersville recently honored the couple on their golden wedding anniversary. Fifty years ago, Mr. and Mrs. Hlavac exchanged vows on June 22, 1957, in Endicott, N.Y.

Mrs. Hlavac is the former Betty J. Klym, and daughter of the late John Klym and Julia Piston Klym of Johnson City, N.Y. Mr. Hlavac is the son of the late George and Ann Hlavac.

Together they have raised five daughters: Cheryl Zuczek, Nancy Donahue, Marybeth Hlavac, Tina Mayerski and Julie Anne Bruno. They have five grandchildren: Jeff Zuczek, Jeremy and Joshua Mayerski, and Billy and Sabrina Bruno.

Mr. Hlavac is a Navy veteran of World War II, a graduate of Kingís College and a retired accountant from RCA in Mountain Top. Mrs. Hlavac, a graduate of Johnson City High School, is a former employee of Anesco and Nabisco corporations.

They celebrated the occasion with a blessing given by the Rev. Richard Cirba at Holy Trinity Church in Swoyersville, and a surprise party organized by their daughters and sons-in-law at the Apple Tree Terrace, Newberry Estate. Family, friends, and members of their original wedding party were in attendance. They also celebrated with family members on a cruise to Alaska.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Need a BOR 1977 Yearbook

I realized when I was on the phone with Michael this evening that I'm missing a few pages of the year book that included the teachers, namely, pages 12 and 17. If anyone has a scanner, please scan in those pages and email me the scans.

I'm not sure how it happened but I lost my high school yearbooks. I left them at my mom's house and perhaps during a move they got tossed out.

I'd like to get a copy of a Queen 1977. If any of you have an extra copy, possibly because you have a sibling who would have no use for that year, please let me know. I recall getting one each year, but the only one I really miss is the one from 1977.

Invite a teacher!

Here's a chance to invite a teacher you would like to see at the reunion.
As you know, at the 25th reunion we had Mr. Lynch, Mr. Slusser, and Mrs.
Obuhosky and they all had a great time. This time we have invited:

Mr. James Lynch
Mrs. Anita Sirak
Mr. Ron Slusser
Sister Donna Marie (formerly known as Sister Ines)
Mrs. Sharon Obuhosky
Mrs. Linda Rakauskas

It's unlikely that all of them will be able to make it, but hopefully a few
of them will be there.

If you'd like to invite a teacher who is not on this list, please send an email to me before next Tuesday and we'll invite the teacher who gets the most votes. If you're having trouble remembering them, you can find some pictures here to jog your memory.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Dress code

Beverly (Yakus) Cottle and I were exchanging some email about the reunion dress code the other day. The committee would like to have an atmosphere where people are comfortable and don't feel like they need to run out buy a new outfit just for the reunion (unless you *wanted* to use the reunion as an excuse to do that, of course :).

Michael said he plans to wear a jacket and tie, and, depending on the mood at the reunion, possibly take them them off at some point. I'll probably do the same. As for the women, wear whatever makes you feel comfortable, whether it be slacks or a dress.

The reunion isn't a prom or a fashion show, just a time to be yourself and enjoy catching up with friends.

Monday, September 03, 2007

The first item you can do with this Tuit is to send in your reunion RSVP to Michael. In case you lost the invitation, please make check out to Bishop O'Reilly Class of 1977 and send it to:

Michael Kinney
150 Andover Street
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702

The cost is $50/person.

Don't forget to specify whether you will also be attending the ice breaker.

This lovely young girl, Kathleen, is a 2007 graduate of Bishop O'Reilly. She is attending Immaculata University in the Philadelphia area. She is playing field hockey and majoring in Nutrition/Dietics. She's planning on getting her Masters in Nutrition and becoming a Registered Dietician.

Her mom graduated with us. Can anyone guess who she is?

Backyard Things...

I sent out an email to my fellow classmates from St. Johns the other day, hoping to drum up some more awareness and interest in the reunion, and maybe even get a response from someone I've not heard from yet. Of the 20 St. Johns classmates that went on to Bishop O'Reilly, I have emails for 11 of you, half of which I'm sure are good. So far, there are 5 of us from St. John's planning to attend and I was hoping to increase that number.

Today I wanted to talk about a book that I used to love to read that was in St. Johns library. It was entitled 'Backyard Things that are Fun to Build'. I would pore over that book for hours, imagining how much fun it would be build the cool structures they had in the book. There was a covered wagon which I did build when I was a kid from a wooden wagon that someone had discarded. It was similar to the one on the cover of the book as shown above. I wonder if the message shown on the cover, 'Out West or Bust' influenced my decision to move here to Greeley, the town named after the guy who popularized the phrase, "Go West Young Man." :-)

But the other items were just pure fantasies. There was a ship, an old west town, a submarine, a helicopter, a plane... and many other things that would bring joy to the heart of a child. I recently bought a copy of the book that I found on the Internet. It brings back a lot of fond memories. I remember that other 'builders' in the class, like Blaise Koval and John Parulski, were also fond of that book. If either of them decide to come to the reunion, I'll bring it along for them to look over.

As you can see from this picture, there was a plane too, and now that I'm building a plane, I can't help wonder if this book planted the seed to do that too.

It's funny to think back to the things that influenced us as kids and wonder what affect they have on our lives now. I still love building and fixing things and get a lot of satisfaction out of something as simple as hanging a blind, not just because is scores me points with Terri, but because every time I look at it, I realize that in some small way, I had a part in it.