The 2005 St Alberts Alumni picnic was held on July 9, 2005. More than 100 people attended. Many former students of St Alberts and their families came out despite the threat of thunderstorms. Of course, the storms never came and the day was a tremendous success as all gathered to renew old friendships and share memories of their time at St. Albert’s. The day featured two great events – the Alumni Softball Game and the Alumni Mass in St Albert’s chapel. Other highlights of the day included: the improntu guitar concert given
by some of the former alumni , the awarding of the “Commissioner’s Trophy for Excellence on the Softball Field” and the consuming of the culinary delights delicately prepared by Patrick McGuigan, O. Carm. and Michael Kissane, O. Carm.
(1976). The following article will give you a brief summation of the day and entice your interest in next year’s Alumni Picnic.
The Alumni began arriving around 11:00 am. One of the first arrivals was Richard “Doc” Keller (1972) who came from Virginia and stayed in a local hotel. Doc is a distinguished member of the class of 1972 who has attended alumni gatherings regularly. He spent some time talking to Mike Kissane about the”good old days” an enjoying the time to relax before all the activities began. Soon the rest of the Alumni arrived with their families and friends. Many of the Alumni of St Alberts showed some “wear and tear” but all in all most were in good shape. The burgers were thrown on the grill and the other refreshments began flowing. The party began! In total, more than 100 people showed up and a good time was had by all.
Those who were present included: Brendan Talty ’73, Ricky Serrintino ’78, Joe Hourihan ’73, Raul Rivera ’75, Michael Kissane ’76, John Plantada ’73, Michael Stec ’73, Fr Matthias DesLauriers, Thomas Hart ’72, Patrick Watters ’74, Fr Alfred Isacsson, Alfred Cipriani ’46, Joseph Sullivan ’65, Fr Parick McGuigan, Tom Connolly ’65, Fr Francis Dixon, Charles Malone 50-51, Tom Marcotte ‘75-76, John Capolla ’74, Kieth Chambery ’72, George Angevine ’72, Richard Hahn ’67, Sal Massa ’73, James Landis ’64, Richard “Doc” Keller ’72, John “The King” Coyle ’74, Michael Brennan ’64, Terence Seeley ’74, Bill McCormack ’65, Michael Morris ’72, Bob Murphy ’73, Henry Blanda ’66, Wally Sandoval ’73, Martin Leahy ’74, Steven Sisco ’65, John O’Grady ’75, Jake Coppock ’74.
CARMELITES WELL REPRESENTED
Many present day Carmelites showed up for the day. Alfred Isaccson, O.Carm., principal of St Albert’s from 1973-1976 was present. Robert Greco, O. Carm. came by to see if some of his former classmates showed up! Francis Dixon, O. Carm., a St Albert’s graduate who later taught history at St Albert’s in 1976-78 was able to meet some of his former students: Joe Hourihan (1978) and Ricky Serrentino (1978). James Hess came and spent time talking to his old classmate. Many other Carmelites came by to say hello. They included: Gus Graap, O.Carm. (Pictured to the left with George Angevine’s dad), Raymond Bagdonis, Francis Amodio and James Andrews, O.
Carm.. Some of the present Carmelite Students showed up for the events also. Sal Massa (Pictured to the right) brought along his photo album and many of the alumni present enjoyed looking at the old pictures. It was noted that the clothing that was worn back then was quite comical! The “70’s” look was in back then but most of the guys present made it clear that they would not be caught dead wearing the clothing they wore back then! Mike Kissane, Sal Massa, Bob Murphy and Patty Waters (Pictured to the left (SA5) are looking at photos of Sal Massa’s basketball days and listening to his version of how the game was won!
Sal Massa claims the photographs were given to him by members of the Photography Club. However, rumors started that Sal had taken the photos from John Koncoli and Tom Karosos (chartered members of the photography club) without their knowledge.
LET THE GAMES BEGIN!
Around 2:30pm, after an unbelievable amount of hot dogs, hamburgers, sausage, beans, corn and chips had been consumed, the duly appointed Commissioner of Softball for many a Camp Carmels (Mike Stec from the class of 1973) announced that the game would begin in ten minutes. Those Alumni of able body began to prepare themselves by loading up on the BenGay, wrapping their ankles and grabbing one last soda or beer before the game.
The weather was prefect for a game. A discussion began as to the best place to play the game. The suggestion was made to use the newly renovated baseball field out beyond the second lake that was refurbished by Orange County Community College. The field is now fenced in and has the dimensions of Yankee Stadium. Most were in agreement of using the field until Tom Hart, the distinguished catcher to the right, pointed out that if that field was used, he would have to run 90 feet to get to first base! Realizing the advanced age of many of the players, it was decided to use the field near the picnic grove.
The picnic grove field is not without its challenges! A number of trees in the outfield proved to be fathomable obstacles for the outfielders. Players also had to contend with a number of groundhog holes that were present throughout the field.
Considering the talent that was present, it was decided by the Commissioner himself that George Angevine and Sal Massa would serve as Captains. Mike Stec felt it was better that he not serve as a Captain this year and limited himself to “playing” on George’s team.
The “Massa Massacrers” team took the early lead 4-1. Then “Angevine’s Annihilaters” had a big inning even with power hitting O’Grady running as slow as molasses. It was said that if he was running any slower, he would be going in reverse. Angevine’s Annihilaters” went ahead 8-4. One complication that “Angevine’s Annihilaters” had to face was the refusal of George to throw out his wife or daughter who played for the “Massa Massacrers”. Questions surfaced as to why George did not want to play with his family. After all, they played better than he did.
The game was tied in the last inning. It looked as if the game was slipping away from “Angevine’s Annihilaters”. John O’Grady was having a tough time at Shortstop and would end the game with the most errors. Eventually the decision was made to make a change at shortstop and John traded positions with his son at 2nd. His son promptly made a great play to end the threat. “Angevine’s Annihilaters” scored a run in the last inning and went on to win the same.
Bob Murphy, who played for the “Massa Massacrers” graced the outfield with the same skills he had in HS, though it was in a losing effort. He also did double duty by catching for the “Angevine Annihilaters”.
Of course, the question of the day was who would get to take home the coveted “Commissioner’s Trophy” – George Angevine on behalf of his team or Sal Massa on behalf of his. There is no question that both wanted the coveted trophy (pictured to the left). After all, who would not want this beautiful piece of artwork depicting the Commissioner himself on the shelf above their fireplace in their living room. The judges gathered after the game and counted the runs that were batted in. They reviewed the sometimes pathetic performances of the players and had no other choice than to award the coveted trophy to “Angevine’s Annihilaters” , the legitimate winners of the game.
Mike Stec, the duly appointed Commissioner, thought it only fair that George take the trophy home since he was the winning coach. Mike Stec appropriately awarded the trophy by putting it in the front seat of George’s car. Rumors began spreading that perhaps George really did not want the “Stec Head” but did not want to hurt Mike’s feeling.
The rumors proved to be true since a very tense scene developed when George peeked in his car and saw the “Stec Head”. George’s parents (pictured to the right) could not understand why George would not want the trophy and were embarrassed by the scene he caused when he adamantly refused to take home the trophy even though he was the Captain of the winning team.
The Commissioner then had to decide what to do with his coveted trophy. He decided to give it to a member of the losing team – Patty Waters. It was left on the hood of Patty Watters’ car as a lovely hood ornament. After all, he joined the festivities late, and was the losing pitcher.
After the game the players and their families began to prepare for Mass in St Albert’s Chapel. For some, it had been years since they stepped foot in the chapel. As the Alumni entered the chapel, many were struck with memories of the old days and the hours spent in that chapel – morning prayer at 7:15, Angelus at noon, Mass at 4:00pm after a quick shower and evening prayer after dinner. Fr Alfred Isacsson, O. Carm. was the celebrant with Deacon Tom Connolly assisting. Fr Alfred Isacsson, O. Carm. delivered an inspiring homily in which he reflected upon the “seeds” that were planted in the hearts of all who attended St Alberts. He talked of how students learned the importance of teamwork, how to relate to others as well as formal academics. A copy of his homily can
be found here. Terry Seeley, Mike Morris, Marty Leahy and Keith Chambery all played the guitar for the mass. The songs chosen were all from the old days and all sang with the same amount of gusto as they did when they were students. Such favorites as: “Wade in the Water” and “Take my Hands” were sung. Thanks to Fr Alfred for providing a special Mass and for the work he did in preparing his homily. All who were present left the chapel with a nostalgic feeling that will remain with them for years.
BEST CLASS TURN-OUT
There was much discussion during the day over which class was best represented at the picnic. Both the class of 1973 and 1974 were well represented as can be seen in the photos to the right. The award for the best turn-out goes to the class that has the most present at the time of the photo. Therefore, the winner is the class of 1974! All who attended were glad they came. It was announced that the Alumni picnic will be an annual event. We hope to encourage many more to come next year.
The award for coming the furthest distance goes to Tom Marcotte who was at St Albert’s from 1975-76! Tom came all the way from Raleigh, North Carolina to attend the picnic! He is pictured to the left with John O’Grady and Raul Rivera.
A number of spontaneous concerts took place throughout the evening. Mike Morris, Terry Seeley and Keith Chambery are playing some of the old favorites from the 70’s while Doc Keller looks on. Marty Leahy also brought his guitar and joined in the playing later on.
As darkness began to settle in it became evident that those who gathered did not want the day to end! The Watters clan (about 20 attended!) had no intention of calling it a night. Plans were made to continue to celebration at the Hampton Inn where some of the alumni were staying. As plans were being made there seemed to be a lack of clarity as to where people were going to stay for the night. Terry Seeley offered his house as a hotel for any wayward alumni. However, he did not have any way of getting there and some suspected he was just looking for a ride home! In the end, Jake Coppock and Jack Coyle ended up being the guests of Terry and his lovely wife Lynda. So, at 9:00pm all gathered in their vehicles and headed for the Hampton Inn and continued the party at one of the local food establishments.
The next Alumni event will be the annual Golf Tournament which will take place on Thursday, August 25, 2005 beginning at 12:00 am for those who golf. The cost is $250 for golfers which includes, lunch
, cocktails and reception and dinner. Those who would like to just come for dinner are invited to the cocktail and reception and dinner beginning at 5:00 pm for $120. The outing takes place at the Middle Bay Country Golf Club in Oceanside, Long Island pictured to the left. This course is one of the premier courses on Long Island. The Alumni Association which sponsors the Golf outing would like to remind all that you need not be a good golfer to play. After all, Mike Stec plays in each tournament. We are looking forward to a good turnout. For more information and to register, go to the Alumni Golf website by clickingHERE. If you simply cannot make it, you may want to consider being a sponsor for the outing. There are various levels of sponsorship and each includes mention in our Golf Journal which is distributed to all who attend.