A record 1,280 alumni and their guests from as far away as New Zealand and Hong Kong converged on campus June 4 to 6 to attend Reunion '99. Whether celebrating their fifth or fiftieth reunions, alumni took advantage of a variety of opportunities to renew relationships with classmates and with Rensselaer.
"The 50th Reunion of the Class of 1949 was every bit as action packed, information filled, and sentimental as reunions should be," said Joe Clark '49. "It was also great fun!"
Starting with a dinner cruise on the Hudson, the weekend unfolded with campus tours, lunch with the deans, alumni college for a day sessions, a late-night alumni cafe at which the new illuminated Rensselaer Alumni Hall of Fame windows were on display, and a host of individual class get-togethers, including a 50th Reunion hospitality room and culminating with the class dinners.
The Class of '44 hosted a reception on site celebrating the restoration of the Approach, for which the class has organized a unique showing of support (see "Class Features").
This year, more alumni volunteers than ever helped in the planning of specific class events, according to David Bohan '82, director of alumni relations. "The commitment and energy these volunteers provided really made the weekend a success" he said.
The annual Parade of Classes, which leads alumni to the Reunion Picnic outside the Heffner Alumni House, did not disappoint this year's parade judges. The Class of '79, in particular, outdid themselves with costumes and spirit.
"We scared and amused the judges between our water balloons, pirate costumes, and thousands of Mardi Gras beads and doubloons," said Paul Sicard '79 (who hails from Louisiana). They also found time to lounge in the sunshine and throw frisbees in the Quad.
Through all the gatherings, organized or ad hoc, alumni renewed friendships and replayed their student experiences.
"It was good seeing so many people, people I had not seen in quite a while," said Joe Hom '89.
"If you weren't fortunate enough to attend," said Bill Wheeler '94, "you missed out on an exciting weekend."
For more coverage of Reunion '99, visit AlumServ on the Web at www.alumni.rpi.edu.
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