LACONIA — Excitement builds as the Laconia High School Class of 1964 gears up for its 50th Reunion, to be celebrated the weekend of September 26-28. More than a year in the planning, the reunion celebrates the high school Graduation of Laconia's first crop of Baby Boomers, most having been born in 1946 following the return to civilian life of many area men who served in the military during World War II.
Weekend activities include social golf on Friday afternoon at Laconia Country Club, registration and reception at Patrick's Pub and Eatery on Friday evening, a Saturday morning tour of Laconia High School and the Huot Technical Center, a Saturday night celebration with catered buffet and dancing at Laconia Country Club, a Sunday morning cruise on the MS Mt. Washington, and group hike up Mt. Major. To date, more than 100 have reserved and plan to attend. While many Sachems will be attending from homes throughout New England, it is anticipated that classmates are planning to return from as far away as Israel, France, and Germany.
The Class of 1964 is a particularly close-knit group, due in part to having witnessed many life-changing events, both at home and around the world. Between 1961 and 1964, significant events included The Bay of Pigs Invasion; the erection of The Berlin Wall; 2,000 US "military advisers" were sent to South Vietnam; Alan Shepard became the first US Astronaut; Telstar was launched; the first black student, James Meredith, registered at the University of Mississippi, escorted by Federal Marshals; Bob Dylan and The Beatles topped the charts; President John F. Kennedy was assassinated; President Lyndon B. Johnson pushed Civil Rights Act of 1964; Congress approved Gulf of Tonkin Resolution; three civil rights workers were killed in Mississippi; and local author Grace Metalious' "Peyton Place" premiered on TV. In the few years that followed the class' graduation, Urban Renewal changed the Laconia downtown business district, Bobby Kennedy and Martin Luther King were assassinated, the Ohio State shootings occurred, and the Viet Nam War claimed the lives of military personnel with Laconia roots.
An opportunity to reminisce, reconnect and rekindle old friendships, the reunion also offers the classmates a chance to share highlights of their five decades of living, working, and playing since those halcyon teen years shared under the watchful eye of such beloved and fabled educators as James McBride, Eleanor Parker, Robert Alley, Katherine Reardon, Maxine Wolston, Senor Smith, and a host of other popular teachers.