The 91th annual Whipple family reunion was celebrated at the Pondview Estate summer residence of hosts Jim and Joan Lisa, with 34 members present. The weather was very hot and humid with sun and rain throughout the day. Ken Vogt gathered family members for group photos. A blessing was given by Jane Wagner.
The business meeting was called to order by President Jerry Stearns. Minutes were read by Secretary Joan Lisa. The treasurer's report was given by Joan Lisa. There were several new births, one death an one marriage to record. Vogt gave his report on genealogy.
The Whipple family gathered for a reunion.
The family members traveling the farthest were Jim and Linda Anzalone. The oldest direct line descendants at 84 years of age were Zelda Kittell and Carlton Wagner. The youngest member was Dillion Sterns at 3 years old. The family with the most members present was the Rick Sterns with 8 family members present.
Officers elected for 2012 were President Jerry Stearns, Vice President Carlton Wagner and Secretary/Treasurer Joan Lisa. Hosts for 2012 will be Linda Pearson and Eric Vandemortel. It was decided that 92nd Whipple reunion will be held on the third Sunday in August 2012 at Midway Park in Maple Springs.
A Chinese auction concluded the afternoon celebration.
One-hundred-and-twenty-five members and guests of the Peter and Sophie Szukala family gathered at Point Gratiot to celebrate their 29th annual family reunion. The pavilion was decorated with banners and vinyl records following through this year's theme "A Rock and Roll Family Affair," hosted by Raymond Abramowicz and cousin Michelle Larsen.
The day began with a casual greeting and continental style breakfast for those who arrived early. Lunch was served at noon and included a buffet table of homemade dishes including an old family favorite, czarnina. New to the menu for supper was pizza and wings in addition to the usual picnic foods.
Time was spent during the day in conversation and updating on events of the past year. Photo albums of days gone by were available to share. Card games captured the time for many of the adults and several children's games were played for prizes. The highlight of the games were the egg toss and larger than life sized "Hello Kitty" pinata filled with candy treats for kids of all ages. After supper, a raffle was held with a variety of prizes that were donated as an entry fee to the event by all in attendance. In addition, a special wooden toy chest was handcrafted and donated as a special gift raffle by Uncle Bob Szukala. Proceeds from the raffles are used for the next reunion expenses and this year a donation was also made to family member Kevin Skelly of Minot, N.D., who suffered a loss of property in the spring floods.
A family newsletter was compiled by Darlyn Andrews and distributed to those in attendance. This year's event was dedicated to the memory of George Skelly who died suddenly in December. Several marriages took place including: Kelly and Jorlanda Fancher, Jason and Melissa Krzyzanowicz, and Aaron and Jen Witruke. Newborn babies since the last reunion were: Matthew Everett, to Kim and Steve Lawrie; Dominic Edward to George Skelly Jr. and Sophia; son Aiden to Alicia Asbell; and a little girl Aaliyah, to Jeffery and Adrian Asbell. It was also announced that three family members thus far are expecting new arrivals before the next reunion. A special "thank you" was extended to those currently serving our country in the military including: Alicia Asbell, George Skelly Jr., Nathan Zielinski and Thomas Giermek. The oldest family member in attendance was Peter Szukala Jr. All of his surviving siblings including: Robert and Henry Szukala as well as Dolores Abramowicz and Alice Daigel also attended the reunion.
Members attended from Illinois, Michigan, Albany, Olean and the local Dunkirk and Fredonia area. The next reunion will be held the last Saturday of July 2012, at the same location and will be hosted by Alan Szukala of Michigan with the assistance of Carolyn Mikan. A country and western theme is planned.