On Friday, July 19, over 200 Alumni and guests from 1944 to 2014 gathered on the Villa Maria Academy back patio to enjoy Reunion Weekend Celebrations! Guests began their evening reminiscing over their time at VMA by looking through a variety of memorabilia set up in the VMA Conference room. The memorabilia included old school uniforms, Villa Notes, yearbooks, photos of the school and a slide show featuring students over the years. The weather that evening was warm, but a perfect night including heat lightening that brightened the sky like natural fireworks. Villa’s back patio was transformed from a gathering place for students over the years into a high-class venue including tables adorned with white table cloths, daisy bouquets, and sparkling lights on the trees that lined the patio. Tables were labeled with class years for Alumni to easily find one another and enjoy their meal. As the evening continued, the Alumni enjoyed music from the 60’s through 2000’s that was played by DJ and Prep Alumnus, Ben Jeffreys `12. The largest group gathered that evening, with over 40 classmates and guests, was from the Class of 1969 who came out in force to celebrate their “50th reunion!”
The classes held a wide variety of individual activities on Saturday, including an evening at the at the Bayfront, a boat tour on Lake Erie, an evening at Calamari’s outdoor patio, a luncheon at the Hagerty Family Events Center, a night at Bullfrogs Restaurant, and drinks at the Public House. Many who attended these events commented that it was a great way to reconnect with their Villa sisters and brothers from years past, and they were very glad they attended.
An Open House featuring a Mass and brunch were held Sunday, July 22nd, at the Villa Maria Academy Auditorium and Cafeteria. Fr. Scott Jabo celebrated mass and welcomed our Alumni thanking them and their families for returning home to Villa for Reunion Weekend. Villa’s Show Choir Director and Music teacher, Mr. Andrew Alesso, accompanied by a violinist and cellist provided the music while Alumna Laura Fehr `18 was a cantor for the event. Alumnae Patty Sansone Gamsby `69 and Julie Barzano Monocello `69 contributed to the Mass celebration as readers. After Mass, a brunch was held at the VMA Cafeteria. The school was open for tours throughout the Open House, and the Villa Victor Spirit Store was open for all interested in taking home a VMA souvenir. Alumni were pleasantly surprised at the recently updated Dance Studio, Science Labs, Fitness Center, Chapel, and Villa Café. Many came with their families and talked of the wonderful days spent at VMA. The special bond held by those who graduated from VMA was strongly felt by all who attended.
Does your Villa Maria Academy graduation year end with a “5” or a “0”? If so, next year’s Reunion Weekend will take place July 24th-26th, 2020. Please contact Elizabeth Fehr, Constituent Relations Manager, at 814-838-2061 ext. 3243 or Elizabeth.firstname.lastname@example.org, if you are interested in organizing class events. We can help you with your mailings and provide classmates’ addresses and contact information to make your event a success.