By Jonathan Guignard
Great memories, long lasting friendships and good times are what keep bringing former high school students back to town for Magrath Days.
A unique class reunion took place last Friday as Magrath High School students from 1950, 1951, 1952 and 1953 gathered at the senior centre for lunch and other activities.
What first started out as a reunion for the class of 1951 years ago, has grown over the years and now includes other grades.
The reason was due in large part of how close everybody was.
“We had a group of people that got along really well. Some were a bit older and some were a little younger. For that reason, we decided to include all of our friends,” said Elizabeth Olsen, co-organizer and a 1951 graduate.
The 1951 class started having reunions 27 years after they graduated and continued to celebrate every five years after that, until 2002.
In that year, they decided five years was just too long to wait, especially as they got older.
“I can’t wait this long for this anymore. I might be dead and miss the next one,” laughed Olsen. ”Since then we have missed one year and that’s all.”
It’s the longest running class reunion out of Magrath High School and Olsen says these reunions have made everybody even closer than they were in school.
“It’s delightful and has worked out because we have seen each other every year. Now a lot of the people here are my good friends,” said Olsen.
Olsen believes things would be a lot different if they didn’t change the reunion to every year.
“It’s really fun and it’s a social thing. If we had gotten together every five years, we wouldn’t even remember who everybody is,” said Olsen.
Co-organizer, Sue Saga Kado, grew up in Japan and moved to Magrath in 1942.
Keeping up with the tradition is something that has been special to her.
“The Japanese have some great traditions. One of the highlights of my traditions is having these reunions. It’s a really happy tradition for me,” said Kado.
The reunion is in its 65th year and each year the former Magrath High School students grow closer.
For some, they travel from different areas in Canada along with the United States.
The group has gotten together for lunch catered by Vinnie and Chris Jensen at the seniors centre every year on the Friday during Magrath Days.
It’s something they plan on continuing for many more years.