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Reprise! Class of ’61 returns to stage, exceeds gift giving goal

Reprise! Class of ’61 returns to stage, exceeds gift giving goal

By Jennifer Meers Jones ’08

After 50 years, the faces, buildings, and scenes of campus might have been different, but when the Class of ’61 stepped back on the Stunt Night stage this past April, it was as if nothing had changed.

“I think we all felt at home being on stage and having fun like we used to,” Delia Lucky Stephens ’61 said.

Members of the Class of ’61 chose to hold their 50th anniversary reunion during Stunt Night weekend. The traditional event holds many memories for the class of their own college days acting out skits at this annual competition between classes. They decided to return to the stage and perform their own skit at this year’s Stunt Night.

Class president Sarah McGlamery Grantham ’61 said the group had no trouble choosing a skit topic.

“Ideas began to come—among them college life in our day. When Carolyn Allison Owens, who teaches at UMHB today, told us how today’s students react when she tells them some of the rules we had back then, we knew that we had our theme,” Grantham said.

“In our hearts the years fade away;
all the time past is just yesterday.
The ties that bind still hold strong.
And to UMHB we’ll always belong.”
— Cornerstone Rap Lyric written by Beverly Ward Wood ’61 and performed during the class’s Stunt Night skit April 1, 2011

After a lively, crowd-pleasing performance Friday night, the reunion weekend continued with a Saturday luncheon where the 25 class members in attendance received their Golden Diplomas and presented the university with a gift of $30,250. Grantham said that the class spent five years raising the funds for the gift, exceeding their original goal of $30,000.

“We felt this was a way to express our gratitude to UMHB for the influence it has had on our lives,” she said.

The gift was designated for the university museum and has funded the renovation and furnishings of the President’s Room exhibit.

Grantham said the reunion weekend was a special time of honoring traditions of the past while making new memories.

“There is strong bond between many class members that has remained over the years. It was noticeable in the relationships that were renewed at the reunion.”