Memo to: Class of ISS ‘59 regarding 35th Reunion at
Jerry & Joyce Lanning’s Town House
From: M.D. Smith, IV
The DAY at ISS from 10 a.m. until about 3:30 was quite nice. Allan Cruse and I went down about 9:45 and were the very first to get there. We enjoyed a long walk around the campus after the tornado. It sure looks different. The lawn where we graduated and all the old, shady trees . . .is now SUNNY and you can see the lake from there.
About 10:30 there was a meeting with the Alum and two Mayors and a Recreation Commissioner of this past year. The Alum turnout was small, but the intimate meeting allowed us to listen to the reports and “grill” these students about what had changed since we were there and what was the same. A big discussion was taking place about a the need for an honor code, but it fell apart on the issue of enforcement. The conclusion was that just the discussions that took place in a democratic manner, served the purpose and accomplished some goals. It was a very good get together. I was sorry that no more than about 10 Alums were there.
Then it was about 11:00 and the Pop-Out fair the students were putting on in the dorm circle. There were all kinds of games and activities designed to raise money for charity, including a dunk booth (manned by female students). Interfacing with students was a good experience. Allen Cruse and I spend some time talking to the underground newspaper staff and both of us bought a 1-year subscription. It is a hoot. The faculty hates it, but allows it in the spirit of free speech. Times have sure changed in this respect. Lunch was a variety of fast food items (Pizza, Chicken Wings, Roast Beef sandwiches, etc) served on the circle.
1:00 brought the Alumni meeting and presentation of Alumni of the Year. It went to Jim Burke, Jr. who now runs his father’s car lot. He was from the class of ‘74 I think. After the meeting, Alan and I cruised down to the lake to have a beer or two. We met Tom Lloyd who came out for part of the afternoon, but couldn’t come to the party that night. We discovered the observatory behind the “hut”. The Hut was built as a bath house, party house, play house and multi-purpose building. Behind in the woods was the concrete block observatory. It had fallen into disuse and the equipment vandalized. It must have been something once upon a time. The day at the Springs ended up with a glee club concert in the new gym at 3:00. It was well done and a nice ending to the day. Then, on to Birmingham and get ready for the party.
What a swell party it was. Those who were there know how great it turned out. They were, Jim Moncus, Jerry Lanning, Charles Robinson, M.D. Smith, Allan Cruse, Richard Green, Willum Fowler, Bob Watson, Peyton Bibb, etc. About half the wives or girlfriends came. Joyce Lanning and their daughter, Annette were caught on Video Tape “Twisting”, but we soon turned that to “boppin’”. We got a couple of calls from class members, and we called a couple of people. David Rinhald’s call went the longest....I think over half of an hour.
The Lanning’s had prepared a super buffet of food including shrimp, dips, veggies, snacks, hot casseroles, breads and much more. Then, Richard Green showed up with “mucho more food and shrimp” too which added to the bountiful table. We all ate and snacked from early evening until the end of the party about 12:30 a.m. and the food never ran out. Neither did the beer or wine. Yes, we did some “boppin’” and some “rockin’ and rollin’” at the party, including yours truly. Shot a lot of pictures and some video tape of the affair.
Mr. Fleming, his wife Imogene and Arthur Moore stopped by and we had a great time talking and reminiscing with them. Later, just missing them, ISS Director, Doug Jennings came by and stayed a while with our group. It’s great to have some of the faculty visit with us. Mr. Fleming is retiring from the school after 40 years, but will teach a specialty course for the Springs for a year or two to still keep “his hand in the pie”. We were all glad to hear that.
The music on DAT (Digital Audio Tape) run thru Jerry’s sound system worked perfectly. We had great quality oldies piped into both main downstairs rooms and outside as well by opening the screen window to the patio. That’s where the beer and wine was iced down and the weather was perfect to stay outside for many of the party goers. Plus, some could smoke in comfort and not cloud the house up.
Folks had a good time looking at the Video Tape from the 30th reunion in 1989. We had a better turnout then with more people from out of town. Guys, we missed you. You got to put the next reunion in STONE on the calendar and make it no matter what. We might even have our party in late June when graduations are over and stuff like that, even if we missed Alumni Day at the Springs. We’ll talk about that and take a vote closer to ‘99.
So what more can I tell you. It was some fine companionship, jokes, stories and good times, as well as food, drink and music. A large number of the music tape sets went home with our classmates. If you didn’t get a tape and would like to have one, I still have a few sets left. Just send $10 and I will mail a set to you. At least you can listen to the good time music in your car or home. It can’t be as good as having been there, but it’s the next best thing. Those of you who already have a set, know what I mean.
That’ll do it for 1994 guys. Think of what we did in the summer 35 years ago as we were getting ready for college or whatever. I enjoyed “whatever” more than I thought I would when I got to college. Matter of fact, my first couple years at college before I got married in the summer between my Soph and Jr. year, would make fodder for a sizable book, but that’s a whole ‘nuther story . . .for someday, perhaps 1999.
Best Regards All,