Reunion of ’60s a smashing success

Published 12:05am Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The 60s reunion for NHS, Cathedral and NAHS Friday and Saturday at the Briarvue and City Auditorium went off without a hitch and will surely be marked a major league success.

Some were here for Friday only and some just for Saturday, but the attendance grand total exceeded 500.

The reunion was a hit from the Friday evening shuttles at the Grand Soleil driving folks to the Briarvue to shutting down the City Auditorium Saturday night.

Initially, at the Friday night social, seeking each other’s help to find particular individuals kept us meeting new people and made the group effort broader and set a fun tone.

Classmates spanning a decade gathered in unison to reunite, share mischievous stories, release old jealousies, admit hidden crushes, own blame, tattle, hug their heroes, laugh, grieve their fallen friends, share the hilarity and inconvenience of aging and dance together to a fabulous Motown show band, The Tams.

What an amazing treat it was to see hundreds of senior citizens “let go.”

Some admitted it was their first time to dance in public because they’d always felt self-conscious.

The Tams encouraged, demanded actually, that everybody get on the dance floor. So, at one point everybody inside was on the floor except the ones catching their breath. Whatever dance struck a fancy, happened. There was the bop, jitterbug, the twist, UT, swim, Wooley Booley, disco, hand jive, the bump, walking the dog and plenty enough belly rubbing to revert to the last days of innocence.

All of this on the beloved, or perhaps sacred, wooden floors that saw each and every one of us through junior and senior proms and graduation dances:  The monument to our teenage dancing memories, The City Auditorium.

Almost everybody coming through the high school ranks makes good friends in classes above and below themselves.

For most attendants, seeing those upper and lower classmates was a first since graduation, which goes from 45 to 55.

That is the bonus, if not the purpose, of a mixed reunion.

Success isn’t always about the numbers in attendance or how good the food or band was or if the air conditioning was working. What if it’s simply about the joy and satisfaction the attendants feel as they drive away?

The 60s Reunion Planning Committee can’t figure out what it did right.

This leaves room for an obvious possibility: When you grow up in Natchez, you know how to have a good time, and you feel a bond that no human hands can tear apart.

And so it is with the committee that made it happen and those whose priority it was to be here.

“Ain’t nobody not got time for that.”

It was truly fabulous. And . . .the mouse crept out on the ballroom floor.

 

Jack Kelly is an organizer for the Reunion of the 60s.