Dunmore Class of 1976 Plans 60th Birthday Celebration

DHS class

Members of the Dunmore High School Class of 1976 who are planning a 60th birthday bash on May 26 include, from left: Paula Kernan Makosky, Ann Lacertoso Berardelli, Renee Ragnacci Sheluga and Diane Genett Olivetti.

By Steve Svetovich

The Dunmore High School Class of 1976 enjoyed its 40th reunion so much two years ago that the class is planning a 60th birthday celebration this May.

The big event will be held Saturday, May 26, at the Waldorf Tiki Bar from 5 to 9 p.m.

Tickets will be $35 per person and will include food and entertainment. There will be a cash bar.

“Everyone had such a great time at the 40th reunion two years ago,” said class member Ann Lacertoso Berardelli. “So we all said, ‘Why wait?’ That’s how it all started. So we planned a combined 60th birthday party for all the class members.”

Committee members for the “60th birthday bash” include Ann Lacertoso Berardelli, Patty Rafalko Copeland, Roseanne McDonough Fisne, John “Rocco” Mandarano, Paula Kernan Makosky, Bill McAndrew, Sherry Rubino Nicholas, Jamie Decker Sleboda, Diane Genett Olivetti, Mary Ferguson Woelkers, Leo Woelkers, Renee Ragnacci Sheluga, Betty Buck Rozelle, Ann Genett and Patty Manci.

“Most reunions are every five years,” said Berardelli. “We decided why should we wait five more years to get together. So it was very easy to decide on a 60th birthday bash.

“It’s a class where everyone got along so well. And many of us stayed in touch and remained friends throughout the years. We want everyone to come out and enjoy the fun. It’s a fun group.”

Checks should be mailed to: Patty (Rafalko) Copeland, 827 Throop St., Dunmore, PA 18512. Checks should be made payable to: DHS Class of 1976.

Berardelli said the next meeting for the event will be Wednesday, April 11, at 6 p.m. in Calabria Pizza, Drinker Street, Dunmore.

“All classmates are welcome,” said Berardelli. “To keep things fun, Bill McAndrew has invited a special guest. It’s a surprise. He is not telling us who it is. We are inviting everyone to come out and join the fun that night. It is not too late to RSVP.”

Beradelli said the Class of 1976 is hoping for a near 100 percent turnout at the “60th birthday bash” celebration.

“Some invitations have been returned to us, so we want to make sure everyone is aware of the event. Information is posted on our class Facebook page, Dunmore High School Class of 1976.”

Berardelli said most of the class members can’t wait for the ” 60th birthday bash” next month. “We can all celebrate our birthdays together.”

In the meantime, Berardelli urged as many class members as possible to attend the April 11 meeting. “Come join us and find out who the special guest is. It is all going to be a fun, great time.”


Doin’ Dunmore: DHS Class of 1976 plans 40th reunion

By Steve Svetovich

Committee members will meet at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 22, at Calabria’s, located on Drinker St. in Dunmore, to discuss reunion plans. The reunion will be held May 29 at the Waldorf Park Tiki Bar, 13 Waldorf Lane, Scranton. The time is to be announced.

Ann Lacertoso Berardelli, a committee member, said class members are excited. Other committee members of the 1976 bicentennial class include William (Babe) McAndrew, Betty Buck, Patty Rafalko, Jamie Decker, Patti Manci, Diane Genett, Paula Kernan, Mary Ferguson, Sherry Rubino, Rose Ann McDonough, Renee Ragnacci, Leo Woelkers and Mary Burke.

The veteran Jack Henzes, still the football coach, led the football team 40 years ago to the Big 11 Northern Division title before the team, known as the Crimson Tide then, lost to the Shamokin Indians, 33-19. Cory Meade, class of 1976, was Athlete of the Year, Player of the Year and All-State at defensive back on the football team. Victor Fangio, currently the Chicago Bears defensive coordinator, a member of the class of 1976, was on that Dunmore Crimson Tide football team.

The Dunmore basketball team in 1976 was coached by the popular Canio Cianci. That team finished number two in District 2, Class AA. And that included a stunning upset in the final seconds over Hanover Area in the District 2 playoffs. Michael Reilly was selected All Regional for basketball.

Samuel Incavido coached the golf team to a District 2 title. The track team finished 6-1.

Girls’ softball, coached by Louis Cali, was added for the first time. The team played to a surprising .600 won-loss percentage in its initial season. The sport has thrived since.

Lanny Masucci coached the baseball team to an 8-8 record. Baseball team members included Fangio, Anthony Duchnowski, Gerard Dempsey, Anthony Lacertoso, A.J. Sabatelle, Frank Capoccia, Robert Chylak and Joe Marrazzo.
The Dunmore class president in 1976 was Michael Sandone. A.J. Sabatelle was class vice president. Cindy Carter was recording secretary. Colleen Burke was treasurer. Ellen Miller was financial secretary. Sharon Rubino was Miss Buck.

The school principal was Eugenia DeFazio. Joseph McDonald was vice principal.

The Saint Patrick’s Day Parade in 1976 featured a Dunmore High School bicentennial float designed and created by Dunmore band members. The Dunmore High School band of 1976 received three trophies for excellence. There will be a float and flat-bed truck in this year’s Saint Patrick’s Day parade for the Dunmore class of 1976. Class members will be aboard.

The Dunmore prom was held at the Treadway Inn, Wilkes-Barre, May 27, 1976. The theme was “Never Say Goodbye.” The class trip was at Niagara Falls. The Dunmore Class of 1976 graduated 228 seniors June 2, 1976.

Ann Lacertoso Berardelli reflected on how times have changed in 40 years for high school students.

“I think we had more hands on fun,” she said. “Obviously,, there was no Facebook, cell phones, internet, or texting.”

“There were more dances. Dunmore had a dance every Friday night. Bishop O’Hara had a dance every Sunday night. We had motorcades before football games. We played in the Big 11 and there were cross town rivals. We played Scranton Central, Tech, West, Valley View, Mid Valley, and so on.”

“We had a different kind of fun. We all walked to school. We hung out in bunches at Cali’s and Carroll’s at Dunmore corners.”

“The kids today have internet and cell phones, but we just had more functions, dances, the Big 11, riding around the towns in a motorcade. It was a lot of hands on fun. Those really were the days.”