More than 350 Stingarees from the Miami Senior High (MHS) Class of 1961 came from all over the world to join the festivities for their 50-year Class Reunion the weekend of June 10. The three-day event, celebrated at the Doral Country Club and Spa, offered a flurry of activities, dances, dining and a good deal of tears and hugs.
The theme “Golden Moments” set the tone for the weekend event. A rousing Friday night rock and roll sock hop dance kicked off the festivities. As a deejay spun “oldie goldies” Stingarees browsed a winding 180-foot long “Memory Lane” display made by Arlene Miller of Kendall. The display pictorially presented the history of this generation from the start of WWII to the end of Osama bin Laden, along with lots of pictures and school memorabilia.
On Saturday, with former Coral Gables Mayor Don Slesnick (Class of ’61) as their tour guide, a busload of Stingaree alumni took a trip to their childhood neighborhoods and their junior high school campuses.
The highlight of the trip was the final destination — the historic Miami Senior High School, built in 1928. There they were greeted by Miami-Dade School Board member Racquel Regalado, activities director Barbara Quintero and former activities director Richard DeAguero (a ’61 alumnus). They were treated to a tour of the school with its new additions and shown the beginnings of the historic restoration of the old building to its former glory.
MHS is considered one of the finest architecturally unique high schools in the country. Proceeds from the bus trip will be given to the MHS Million Dollar Band for uniforms.
The formal banquet Saturday night was emceed by Gables resident Tim Anagnost, and featured a poignant video created and produced by Kendall residents Ann and Dave Torchon. The video, set to the music of the times, featured a retrospective of the school, the classmates, and many of the major events of the past 50 years, and ended with a tribute to the classmates who served in the military and the singing of the school alma mater.
Reunion co-chairs Louise Norris and Kendall resident Howard Sherman were honored for their leadership. Helen Realini (South Miami) and Cerita Lane (Broward) were recognized for their creation of the class directory. South Miami resident Mark Buchbinder was applauded for his work in coordinating all activities with the hotel.
The Fabulons band played dance music for the remainder of the evening.
The Sunday brunch ended the weekend festivities with tearful goodbyes, promises to keep it touch and hearts filled with golden moments to remember.