Saturday, July 14, 2012
Pagoda Hotel LaSalle Room
Hail McKinley Hail!
When the McKinley High School Class of 1977 Reunion Committee was asked to consider a 35th reunion in 2012, we wondered what kind of response we would get. As usual our classmates came through.
We would like to thank the 111 people who attended our gathering at the Pagoda Restaurant’s LaSalle Room on July 14 for what turned out to be a memorable evening of fellowship, fun, good eats, music and dancing and a lot of winners!
The committee was still putting the finishing touch on getting the room ready when the guests started to arrive at 5 p.m. sharp. Mike Carroll was the first to arrive and we rewarded him with a prize!
Classmates who flew to join us included: Fred Lorenzo (Lahaina, Maui), Eric Louie (San Diego, Calif.), Audrey Uratani (San Diego, Calif.), Lynne Uyehara (Bellevue, Wash.), Joanne (Liu) Young (Virginia), Cindy (Ma) Chong (Costa Rica) and Santiago Baron (San Jose, Calif.).
Joy (Kurihara) Tanouye of 808 Travel, who provided many of the donated prizes, spent many hours putting together the candy favors and the centerpieces for each table. Joy, along with friend Cindy Nonaka, organized the table décor, which also featured black and gold napkins (nice touch by Pagoda). Lyla Dayrit put together the décor, which included balloons and several poster boards featuring Daily Pinions, which fit perfectly in the windows of the circular LaSalle Room.
Sheri (Sonoda) Kim and Sharon (Nakata) and her husband Eric Viveiros ran the reception table where people could look at old yearbooks and Pinions and classmates could pick up their name tags featuring their high school senior photos. As people arrived, they greeted and hugged each other and it was like time hardly passed. Old friendships were renewed and classmates who didn’t know each other from high school got acquainted. Senior Class President Greg Nishioka was there to welcome everyone. Pupus (boiled peanuts and soy beans) from Yama’s Fish Market (Brian Yamamoto) and chips satisfied the early munchies.
As daylight and views of the Pagoda Garden faded into night, ample time was given for people to chat and catch up before the buffet dinner began. The menu featured Mixed Greens with Assorted Vegetables and Dressings, Warm Potato Salad, Prime Rib Carving Station with Au Jus & Creamy Horseradish, Grilled Mahi with Lemon Butter Caper Sauce, Stuffed Chicken Breast with Truffle Kabayaki Sauce, Cakes and Pies and beverages.
From the start of the evening, Clayton Harada and the King Intermediate DJ Club provide the music of the 1970s, everything from disco to Elton John to the Eagles. Once the program began the nostalgic mood of the night had already been set.
Kathleen Campbell, who led the Reunion Committee, and Kalene (Shim) Sakamoto hosted the evening, while Susan Sugitani organized the games. Attendees were challenged to McKinley Trivia. The memory of some classmates, such as Jay Fujii, amazed even the committee, which tried to come up with some tough questions. The DJs and Susan came up with a ’70s “Name that Tune” game, asking the tables to collaborate on naming songs after listening to a few lines. Lynn (Taketa) Bhanot even ran up to the podium with a Winter Prom picture when a trivia question was asked about the event! Willington Leong won a prize for having the most grandchildren.
Prizes for the games and lucky drawings were abundant thanks to the generosity of donors. Winners got items such as travel certificates, pizza a month for a year, gift cards of cash, food, drinks, gas, bags and jewelry, McKinley baseball T-shirts (Patrick Ganeku is McKinley’s baseball coach) and much more.
We were honored to have four former advisers at the dinner, Alvin Nip, who still teaches at McKinley, Jean Matsuo, Meg Uehara and Raynette Takizawa. All looked great! Mr. Nip helped us pick the big prize winners, including Kenneth Hashimoto, who won the travel certificate from 808 Travel.
Once the program and games were over the dancing began. Just like at the old dances, it took a few to get things started before the floor was filled with classmates showing off the moves they never lost. Thanks to Jennifer Hartl-Davis, Richard DeCoite, Asa Kaulia and Sharon Viveiros for getting things started! A disco ball and lights provided the shine while a logo featuring a Tiger and “McKinley High School Class of 1977” projected and spinned on the dance floor.
Stacy Kaneshiro recorded the event with photos and video. Ed Young, who was unable to attend, and Bart Asato helped with the signups and budget. Kalene’s husband, Karl, also helped with the setup.
Chatter and loud laughter dominated throughout the night. “Do you remember?” was heard often. Even spouses and friends remarked how they were impressed with our class and how they bonded after all these years.
Spirited versions of “Black and Gold” and the school’s alma mater (Thanks for the reminder Jennifer!) filled the room as classmates held hands, a perfect ending to a night to remember.
Comments by classmates:
I want to thank and congratulate our reunion committee for putting in all their time and effort to make our 35th a memorable and fun one. It was really nice to see "old" friends and catching up each other. Again thanks for doing such a great job!
It was a great time for those who missed it. Thank you for all that donated prizes and the committee that planned the event. Great job as our MCs kept us in line as the over 50 people that still have the moves or could move hit the dance floor. No EMTs or O2 was on stand by but a lot of fun and smiles, with those who still have there own teeth. All in all the love of the Class of 77 was more as we all wish Ed Young good health. Thanks Ed.
Please keep my on the list for the 40th.... I am promising myself that I will make one of our reunions.
I know I said I was coming but I'm going to miss Saturday's reunion. I've been to every reunion except for the first...Looking forward to the pics.
I'll be thinking of all of you this Sat as you celebrate our 35th Class Reunion. Pagoda, so close to my family home, I could've walked over (with Lorna Soong) if I were there. Looking forward to seeing some pics & vids. Aloha!
Great Job Reunion Committee, Thank you for all your hard work!
Thank you Bart and the reunion committee. May God bless all of you.
THE CLASS OF 77' I really enjoyed myself and it was nice to see all friends present. I hope everything is fine with all and I also hope everyone had a nice time togethere. Well I hope to see you all again in 5 years or sooner. Love you all and take care of each other. Say hello on the streets cause sometimes I don't recognize people and also at times I no can see. Aloha, Darryl KS Wong
Aloha Ed hope your doing ok and a speedy recovery, I missed the reunion too, looks like it was fun hope to see you at the next one Aloha get well.
I'm sorry I couldn't attend. Timing was bad w/ my trip the weeks before to the homeland. Looks like you guys had fun!! Great to see!!
Dustin Ebesu (C/O 1978)
Hey Bart, The reunion photos look like it was a total success. Congratulations to your class and the committee.
I would like to thank you & all the commitee again for the great party last night. Hope Eddie gets well.
Thanks again. Jay
Hi Bart-- Congratulations on such a successful reunion celebration. It was really fun. Thanks very much. See you in 5 years.
|Black and Gold Day|
McKinley High School Class of 1977
40th Reunion Summer 2017