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Thu., Sep. 3
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PCS Alumni coming from all over the world for Stonerstock


POTSDAM - Potsdam Central High School graduates from all across America and beyond will come together this weekend for the first ever Mega Reunion, an event that’s being billed as Stonerstock.

“We’re very proud of the interest and how things have turned out,” according to JoAnn Roberts, who’s helping to organize the event.

“We’ve sold 575 tickets and are officially sold out,” she said, referring to the number of tickets available to Saturday evening’s alumni dinner at SUNY Potsdam’s Barrington Student Union.

“That number comes from the number of people SUNY Potsdam could accommodate for the dinner Saturday night,” Ms. Roberts said, adding many of the weekend’s events are open to the public and other Potsdam alums, who may find themselves without tickets for the big event.

Phil W. Demarest (‘70), who is one of the three initial organizers of the event, said he’s aware of people coming from Australia, London, Sweeden, Canada and “pretty much any state I can think of.

“Those are just the people who have purchased tickets,” he said. “There’s hundreds of people coming without tickets.”

Mr. Demarest, who resides in California, said the idea for Stonerstock came from a conversation he had with Jackie Hurley and Dianne Bustamante, two other Potsdam High graduates, members of the class of 1972, who also live in the San Diego area.

“They had the idea of doing a reunion for four years. The two years ahead of them and the two years behind them,” he said. “They asked me for help and I said if we’re going to do something, let’s do something big.”

While the trio’s original plan was to include 50 years of Potsdam graduates, it quickly grew into something even more than that.

“Once we started advertising it, we started getting interest from pre-1950 students,” he said. “We have people coming from as far back as 1937.”

Mr. Demarest also noted some of the more recent graduates will also be attending.

“When we first started, we were thinking 250, 300, 350 people max,” he said, adding there are no plans to make this an annual event.

“This is definitely one and done,” he said. “This is something that will go down in history for Potsdam, and we would like to keep it like that.”,

Mr. Demarest noted he would be honored, however, if sometime down the road “after we’re long gone” another group of alumsi decided to put on Stonerstock II.

Stonerstock will kick off Friday afternoon with a 1960s-themed welcoming reception from 1 to 5 p.m. at the Potsdam Museum

From 5 to 7 p.m., various class mixers will be held at different restaurants in the Potsdam area.

Classes from 1937 to 1956 and 1958 to 1964 will meet at the Lobster House in Norwood. The class of 1957 will meet at the Potsdam Town & Country Club for its 55th reunion. Former and current faculty will meet at the First Crush Wine Bar. Classes from 1965 to 1969 will meet at Scoopuccino’s, and classes from 1970 to 1973 will meet at Maxfield’s.

Classes from 1974 to 1977 will meet at Mama Lucia’s, and classes from 1978 to 1982 will meet at the Cactus Grill & Cantina. Classes from 1983 to 1989 will meet at the Elks Club with classes from 1990 to 2012 meeting at Ton’s Sports Bar.

“We anticipate people will stop by the class mixers even if they don’t have a ticket,” Ms. Roberts said.

Friday’s activities will conclude with a free block dance that is open to the public from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. with Market Street closed from Main Street to Elm Street.

The action will then shift to Maxfield’s and Ton’s from 9 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. for jam sessions that will also be open to the public and free for Stonerstock ticket holders. Non-ticket holders may attend these events for a $5 charge.

Saturday’s events will start at 9 a.m. with a 5K walk/run starting on Beal Street, behind Potsdam Laundry. The course for this event will be the same as for the Tour de Potsdam. The cost to participate is $5, with proceeds benefiting the Potsdam Key Club.

The Elks Club will host a chicken barbecue at 11:30 a.m. The cost of this meal is not included in the price of the reunion ticket.

At 1 p.m. all alums in town are invited to the school for a Mega Reunion group photo on the football bleachers behind the high school.

From 1 to 5 p.m. a musical tribute to Hank Williams Jr., Hankfest, is being held at Ives Park. This event will also feature a craft fair.

The Mega Reunion itself will then take place from 5 p.m. to midnight with cocktails served from 5 to 6 p.m. and a buffet dinner from 6 to 8:15 p.m. There will be an opportunity for organizers and participants to share stories and recognize various attendees 8:15 to 8:45 p.m.

Double Axel will perform from 9 p.m. to midnight.

The even twill conclude on Sunday with a farewell brunch at the high school to be followed by tours of the school from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

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