President’s Letter – June 2021
Greetings to my fellow Stevens Alumni,
As you are probably aware by now, we have moved the date of our annual alumni festivities and parade to October 2nd, 2021. We hope that with this change, the pandemic will be even more contained and give everyone the opportunity to venture out without the fear of Covid-19 lingering in their minds. We made this change early because of the need to book bands and other units that have to be made months in advance.
We are also hoping that this fall date might coincide with Homecoming weekend and also the annual Chili cook-off event.
We have cancelled the banquet again this year for multiple reasons: we cannot hire a caterer for less than $40 a plate, the closeness of attendees having to sit together is also a deterrent. We will not have a luncheon buffet for the annual meeting although at this time we intend to have the annual meeting following the parade. THIS is a tentative plan and we will keep you informed of any changes.
We had planned a more spectacular parade as this is our “150 Reunion” and will book as many of our marching units as we can however, we are finding that some units are still not travelling to participate in parades. That is understandable and we will do the best we can to make this a parade that everyone will remember and enjoy. I do know that we will have a combination of last year’s 5-year classes along with this year’s 5-year classes taking part which will increase the size of the parade and with the two themes, it should be a fun time for all.
We also had to consider the travel involved for members coming from across the country to take part in their class reunions and we hope that this date change will be more convenient for them. We are in uncharted waters as we have never had to cancel alumni weekend of all class gatherings, the banquet and the parade. To my knowledge, only one parade has ever been postponed due to rain only to rally later in the day and proceed as planned.
Again, the date for our 150th reunion is Saturday, Oct 2nd, 2021 with a theme of “SHS Alumni Association Proudly Presents Our 150th Reunion Celebration”. Last year’s theme of “Board Games” is also available so having two themes to work with should be interesting and lots of fun for both the participants and the on-lookers.
To move on, we have a new improved website that is more user friendly, it has been active and up and running for about a month now. Members have asked to be able to pay dues and donations through the website and this is a viable option to members wishing to pay thru Pay Pal. Mark Chamberlain, class of 1981, worked diligently with Jeremy Ryan of Advantage Creations to get this website set up with things that you the membership have asked to be able to see on the website plus other items of interests. We hope that you will all visit the website at stevensalumninh.com and see what you think. We are always open to new ideas.
I would also like to take this opportunity to thank David Hale, class of 1961, for all his work to set up the original website and to maintain it for so many years. His diligence and patience thru the years was very much appreciated so AGAIN, THANK YOU DAVID!
Dick Girard has written an article about the parade and has included the new and extended route for this 150th year’s celebration. Please read, and if you have comments let Dick know. This is a first for all of us and we want to make it as spectacular as possible.
With no festivities last year, the dues and donations were down slightly, but we will do the best we can to make this 150th reunion a spectacular event for everyone. Again, it has come to my attention that people think that outside units and bands, the fife and drum, bagpipes and drums, horses, bektash and other specialty units are free; they are not. The cost for the parade every year is between $16,000 and $18,000 and with this year being a special year for Stevens Alumni, we would like to book more units, but as I had said earlier, a lot of units are still not taking bookings for parades. We will do the very best that we can to make Stevens High School Alumni Reunion Weekend the best ever. Help us do that. If you have never paid your dues, it is not too late to start. The annual dues are still $10 and I will say it again if the 7500 members of this great organization paid their dues? You do the math. We also have a tee-shirt fund raiser thru the Ink Factory in Claremont. Orders will be taken for tee shirts, long sleeve shirts, sweat shirts. Elyse Crossman, and Heather Girard are working with The Ink Factory on this project. There will be more detailed info along with pictures of the design towards the back of the newsletter. You can also find a link to order the tee-shirts on the alumni website. This is a good way to support your organization.
On behalf of Stevens Alumni Association, I extend our sincerest condolences to any of you who have lost loved ones due to this horrendous pandemic.
Doug LeBlanc, President
Proud member of the Class of 1963
And Stevens High School Alumni Association