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The Saratoga Falcon

The Saratoga Falcon

Saratoga alumni reunite after decades

Lawyer, writer, software engineer, caterer. Living in Sweden, Italy, Mexico, or Southern California. Walking into a high school reunion is overwhelming, yet undeniably exciting to see the diverse paths former friends and peers have taken after graduating.

Saratoga High alumni have diligently been planning reunions—one class organized a fun night at Strike! Bowling in Cupertino while another planned a formal event at Rinconada Country Club. On a yearly basis, around thee classes organize reunions, contacting the school at times.

Assistant principal Karen Hyde said ,”We offer the classes a tour of the school of areas such as the science building, basically things that weren’t around when they were here.” Due to the popularity of social networking sites, classes have had no issue finding all their previous classmates.

Celebrating their five-year reunion over Thanksgiving weekend this past fall, the class of ‘05 contacted people mostly through Facebook. Coordinating the event was Margaret Stevens, who was the senior class president of her 2005 class, and had the responsibility of organizing such reunions.

“We wanted to choose somewhere that could accommodate as few as 25 or as many as 300 of us that didn’t require us to rent a room and pre-sell tickets,” said Stevens. The class had their reunion at Strike! Bowling because it had a bar, food, bowling and an arcade so people had a variety of activities to choose from. The reunion planners set the date and time window and then encouraged people to come out to mingle and reconnect.

“We had more than 50 people show up, and it was really fun,” said Stevens. “We hope to increase the number for the 10 year reunion.”

The class of 1981 has planned a formal event at Rinconada Country Club on Oct. 1.

“We are hoping to see a lot of classmates at the SHS football game the night before and possibly a casual get together the day after; make a weekend out of it,” said Vance Walker, from the class of 1981, who is now an event planner as well as caterer in Los Angeles.

Walker created a Facebook group for the class, which ultimately attracted an impressive 444 alumni—70 percent of the class.

“Since not everyone is on Facebook, people in the Facebook group will call or email others and pass their emails to me. But a few class members, sadly, have passed away,” said Walker.

Eliot Jacobsen, another alumni from the class of 1981, created a spreadsheet on Google with updated with married/current names, Facebook pages, emails, and more. “It has been really helpful because it was getting very confusing keeping track of everything, especially since a lot of women have their married names and not their maiden names as their Facebook name. That is probably the biggest thorn in finding people,” said Walker.

Another alumni from the class of 1981, Graham Craft set up a Google map where one can see where their classmates are. “Some are in Mexico, Sweden, Italy, and all over the United States—it’s great,” said Walker.

After all the time has passed, alumni still make an effort to reconnect—an effort that is facilitated by efficient networking sites.

“I got enthusiastic in finding people, because I don’t want anyone to feel excluded. I know usually people don’t seek out reunion information, but wait for invitations to find them,” said Walker. “Using all these networking sites was a great way to be able to contact as many people as we could.”

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