The Multnomah class of 1962 loves to reunite. Every five years we simply push the Class Reunion button and begin gearing up for our next reunion. 2012 proved to be no exception. It was to be our 50 Year Reunion, so we began planning a full year in advance. We knew that Multnomah would be honoring our class at commencement in May by inviting graduates of the class to march in cap and gown, leading in the newest graduating class. We wanted to include everyone who had ever been a member of our class in the reunion festivities, however, so we also began planning an additional program of our own.
We have a group of around a dozen classmates in the greater Portland area who get together once a month for lunch, so we already had a ready-made reunion committee in place. As we talked about the upcoming reunion over lunch each month, we began to divide up the planning responsibilities. We decided to have a reunion brunch on campus on Saturday, the day after graduation, so began planning accordingly. Members of our lunch group volunteered to help with registration, the memory book, program, or decorations.
We started out by sending an invitation to as many who had ever been a part of our class as possible. We also invited a few guests who had been faculty or staff members while we were students. We encouraged graduates of the class to participate in the commencement activities, while urging all classmates to come the following day for our class reunion. We first considered keeping the reunion simple, allowing plenty of time for just mixing and mingling. As more and more responses began to come in, however, we realized that we needed to make this reunion truly worthwhile for classmates who would be coming to Portland from all over the country. And come they did – from North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Texas, Iowa, Colorado, and Canada as well as closer to home. We were amazed as our list of attendees grew to include nearly half of our class.
Most members of our class are technologically semi-literate, so much of our communication with classmates was done by email, but otherwise we chose to keep this a low-tech affair. Highlights of the reunion were singing our favorite songs from student days, and our time of sharing what Multnomah has meant to us over the years. Our memory book, which classmates were able to order, was filled with stories of what class members have done since Multnomah days, pictures of us “then-and-now,” and anecdotes of our student days. This book will help keep the memories alive for those who attended the reunion as well as for classmates who were unable to join us.
As might be expected, the road to the reunion was not perfectly smooth. Plans had been going well until the final week when, suddenly, uncertain flight schedules, illness, and family emergencies affecting key people seemed to make major changes in the program inevitable. We were confident, however, that because we had diligently prayed, planned, and prepared for this big event, we had done all that we could and needed to do, and we could trust the outcome to our All-knowing God even if things did not proceed exactly as planned. When we looked back at the day’s events afterward, we realized that we did not have to implement a Plan B at any point!
Classmates who came from far and wide were deeply grateful for this opportunity to see friends they had not seen in 50 years. The planning committee was able to doubly enjoy the reunion – first in planning the reunion, and then in delighting in the reunion itself. We look forward to 2017 when it will be time – once again – to push the Class Reunion button!
Gail (Stark) Lundquist ‘62