Every past graduate invited to Anoka High reunion

Plans are in the works for an all-class reunion for Anoka High School.

Commemorative t-shirts for the Anoka All-Class Reunion are on sale for $10.
Commemorative t-shirts for the Anoka All-Class Reunion are on sale for $10.

The reunion is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 20 from 8 p.m. to midnight, following the Anoka Halloween Light up the Night Parade.

The gathering will take place on Jackson Street, between Second and Third avenues, according to Class of 1972 alum Ross Omdahl. He, along with Pam Westlie and Buddy and Carol Hedberg have been organizing the first all-class reunion.

What started as an idea to expand a get-together of Westlie’s 1971 classmates, which have been using the Halloween bonfire as a place to reconnect, the idea has been picking up steam since February.

Organizers are now expecting as many as 5,000 people to converge downtown for the reunion, said Omdahl.

Back in May the organizers received approval from the Anoka City Council to close the Jackson Street for the reunion.

“We’re going to have four check-in points where people can get badged with their class year,” said Omdahl.

Then the street will have certain areas designated and signed for five-year class blocks, starting at 1960 and older.

The first graduating class in Anoka dates back to 1881.

According to information provided by the Anoka County Historical Society, Anoka High School also has graduated more students than any other school in the state, said Omdahl.

To date 137,000 students have earned a diploma from Anoka High School.

The Light up the Night parade already has a reputation for bringing in a big crowd to downtown Anoka, but the all-class reunion should boost those numbers by the thousands.

The reunion is free and does not include pre-registration. It is also being included on Anoka Halloween’s official event listings.

Omdahl said he hopes more food vendors can be solicited for the area north of city hall where the community bonfire is held to keep up the the reunion visitors.

Along with meet-ups with old classmates, the reunion will also give Anoka alumnae a chance to walk the halls of their alma mater.

The three buildings used as Anoka’s high schools over the years – the Sandburg building (1905 to 1953) and current Anoka Middle School for the Arts (1954-1971) and Anoka High School (1972 to present) – will all be open on Sunday, Oct. 21 for tours from noon to 2 p.m.

At the high school there will be students on hand to give tours and past yearbooks out on display for a trip down memory lane.

“This has really gone from a one night thing to a weekend event,” said Omdahl, who worked for the Anoka-Hennepin School District for 20 years as a custodian at Sandburg Middle School.

Specially designed t-shirts are also on sale now for $10, with any proceeds being used to help cover costs associated with the reunion. T-shirts will also be on sale at the reunion, and a second printing will be available if demand outpaces the committee’s supply.

For more information, please contact Omdahl at 763-421-7046.

Mandy Moran Froemming is at [email protected]

  • Scott Schwen

    Awesome ! Great job you guys ! Thanks for your hard work and time ! I am married to Janelle Stahlberg of Champlin, MN, Anoka Class of 1971, same class as mine . We are living in Denver, Colorado and plan to come back for the reunion . Thanks again for all your hard work, bravo ! See you in October !

    Scott & Janelle Schwen

    • Sandy Sanbeck Stang

      I recently had lunch with a former classmate who informed me of the upcoming reunion. Found this site when I went to check it out and was pleasantly surprised to see a reply from Janelle Stahlberg’s husband Scott. I was a friend of Janelle’s and would love to see her again. That is what is so great about this reunion, it will afford people an opportunity to reconnect with old friends they haven’t seen and would have no idea of how to contact. Thanks for putting this together!
      Sandy Sanbeck Stang, class of 1970

  • Sheila Kraemer McDonald

    How exciting! I hope I can make it! I am from the class of 1973. I would love to see some of my former classmates.

  • Bill Snyder

    class of ’48…I will not be able to come from California..but I would really love to be there!!!!!!!
    I am in pretty good health except for my heart. I have a defibulater/pacemaker.

  • Pam (Marsolek) Deitsch

    Woo Hoo Class of 1978!!! I don’t know if I’ll be able to make it (I was just home for 3 weeks in January when my mom died and 2 weeks last month when we settled the “estate”) but as I haven’t been able to come to any of my reunions (either stationed overseas or far away and pregnant!) I would love to come to this one!

  • This sounds like it should be a lot of fun. I’m living in Arizona now, but I plan to be there. Hopefully my sister Robin can make it too. Thanks to everyone that has put forth effort to pull this all together. Class of 1978!

  • Susan Purdham Bridgeman

    Sounds like a great plan. I plan to be there

  • Class of 1979! I love these events…Can’t wait to get out of the Arizona heat.

    Hope to see a lot of my friends and my sisters friends too! She will be my date

  • Jennie Crapser

    Wahoooo… can’t wait – Class of 83!!!

  • Jill Odegaard

    Fun time! I’ll be there with a few of my friiends from the class of “83”!