Mary Sunderland Mahony and Sharon "Sam" Morrissey, both in the Joel Barlow Class of 1966, look back on their years in the high school with appreciation for not only the education but also for the social experience.
As a result, 50 graduating classes from Joel Barlow High School will gather for the first time ever for "One Extravaganza Picnic." On Saturday, June 11, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., alumni and their families will celebrate the first Joel Barlow High School graduating class, which was in June 1961. The event will be followed by an alumni baseball game at 3:30 p.m.
Proclamations will be read by the first selectmen from Easton and Redding. The high school jazz band will perform, followed by 50 years of oldies the background music of the day. John Read Middle School artists will do face painting, and organized games for children will be lead by Barlow students. Ice cream will be available at Maya's Vintage 1966 Good Humor Truck. Tours of the school will be provided for those who would like to look for their old lockers or check out the changes.
Now retired, Mahony and Morrissey decided it was time to give something back to Joel Barlow and create a lasting legacy. They created the Joel Barlow Alumni Association and the Joel Barlow Alumni Fund. This will be the kickoff event for both.
Morrissey and Mahoney were not alone in their desire to give something back. They were joined in the planning process by many alumni from different graduating classes who have donated their time and expertise.
Other members of the reunion committee include Tom Linley, Melanie Clark Tuthill, Bobbie Granskog, Marshall Sanford, Barbara Schneider Valanzia, Patti Blackman Colbert, Anne Marie Paulsen Libkvich, Mike Handy and Brian English.
Handy, class of 1980, has been instrumental with not only his artistic expertise but also his advertising background. He has put together an ad book campaign in celebration of the event. Anyone interested in taking out an ad may go to www.joelbarlowalumni.com and print the form. Ads can send good wishes to a senior, advertising a business or anything you want. The ad books, which also contain historical photos of the Joel Barlow groundbreaking, will be on sale for $5 each on the day of the picnic.
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