Lisbon grads gather

LISBON – Displays in 34 windows around downtown Lisbon have heralded the first Lisbon David Anderson High School all-class reunion in six years, which kicked off Sunday with a golf outing in Columbiana.

The reunion – in the works since last January – will feature different events nearly every day until July 6.

Lisbon Alumni Association president Betsy Barringer said the reunion is drawing attention from as far away as the states of Washington, Colorado and even Alaska.

The last reunion in 2008 drew around 1,000 to 1,200 people, and she is hoping for an even bigger turnout this year.

“We want everyone to come and just enjoy themselves and come home to see family and friends. We are trying to make it as friendly and welcoming as possible,” she said.

The reunion is funded in part by corporate sponsors, and planned events include a minstrel show and optional buffet dinner July 2 and 3 at the high school.

Practicing for the two-hour musical and stand-up comedy show began in March, Barringer said.

The first half will feature more traditional songs like Swanee River, When the Saints Go Marching In, and Alabama Jubilee, all the while a group of six people will pepper the program with clean, family friendly jokes.

The second half of the show is more variety, with a focus on local memories, she explained.

“We will sing the alma mater and honor the veterans at the end. It’s a more folksy, hometown kind of feel,” she said.

The show is being led by Tom McKenna and tickets are $8, or $10 for reserved seating. The buffet is $15, and proceeds will benefit the Lisbon Alumni Association (LAA) Scholarship Fund. Tickets are on sale at Morgan’s Drug or Gray Kodrich Supply, or by contacting the LAA. Tickets also may be available at the door, unless it’s a sellout.

The LAA has given out $326,000 to Lisbon students since the scholarship program’s beginning in 1988, with more funding given last year than ever before, she said.

Seventeen students were awarded $1,250 each for their skill, and $2,500 was given to one student through the Kauffman Scholarship for Success and $1,500 was given to a student through the Kathryn Bieshelt Memorial Scholarship. Two other students were also awarded $500 each through the J.J. Patsey Award this year.

“We are really proud of what we have been able to do and we look forward to having the community support the scholarship funds. We know that we will continue to do this for a long time to come,” Barringer said.

Meanwhile, she also wished to thank the village departments for their storm clean-up efforts. While most of the debris has been removed since the June 11 downburst that brought some local business operations to a halt and put some residents out of their homes, there are still some trees laying along the roadways.

“The tree situation has sort of set us back but the village has been on it,” Barringer said. “They restored it to the way it was pre-storm as much as possible.”

She doesn’t anticipate weather will be a problem during the reunion, and even if a little rain should fall, tents will be set up at the Columbiana County Fairgrounds, which is where the all-school reunion ceremony will begin at 6 p.m. July 5, following other festivities.

Musical entertainment and food vendors will be set up in the fairgrounds that evening.

The day will begin with a parade hosted by the Lisbon Area Chamber of Commerce at 11 a.m. that will move from the fairgrounds to the square, and all classes are encouraged to feature an entry. Floats, antique cars and walking groups are welcome. The parade will form at 10 a.m. at McKinley Elementary.

Immediately following the parade is an antique car show in the Columbiana County Courthouse parking lot downtown, scheduled for noon to 3 p.m. Trophies are being sponsored by the Class of 1952 and free dash plaques will be available.

The final event of the week is an all class family picnic at 1 p.m. July 6 at the Lisbon Pool and Park, with free pool admission. The LAA will provide hot dogs, hamburgers and lemonade and guests are encouraged to bring a casserole or desert or chips to share, and a lawn chair to rest.

“Relax and have some old fashioned fun,” Barringer said.

More information can be found online at