Preparing for the 35th anniversary of their high school class, organizers with the Port St. Joe High School Class of 1982 had a simple solution for a new twist.

 

Preparing for the 35th anniversary of their high school class, organizers with the Port St. Joe High School Class of 1982 had a simple solution for a new twist.

Multiply.

The result was the “2017 Reunion Blast” which will bring together the PSJHS high school classes of 1979 through 1986 from 4 p.m. ET until whenever the fun stops on Saturday, Aug. 5, at the Centennial Building in Port St. Joe.

The “Blast” began with the Class of 1982, a large class and one that has held reunions every five years since graduation.

“We were a big class and we are really close,” said Kim Buskens of the Class of 1982, who along with Brent Moore, is organizing the “Blast.” “We are reunion addicts.”

And the Centennial Building and its special memories as the site of all school dances and proms during their years at PSJHS seemed the perfect setting.

But the cost of securing the building meant more participation was needed.

“So we talked about including more classes,” Buskens said.

The initial thought, based on nice round numbers, was to include the classes 1980-1985.

The word went out on social media, two Facebook pages for the event were created, and the feedback was, let us say, immediate and enthusiastic.

“And then all these ‘79ers wanted to come,” Buskens said. “They are also a close class and we know most of them, passed them in the halls, were in the same clubs and on the same teams.”

The Class of 1986 joined the bandwagon for much the same reason, and the “Blast” was born.

As of the beginning of this week, more than 200 alumni are committed to attend and Buskens knows that closer to the date she is likely to be inundated with ticket requests.

“People in some of the classes have never been to a reunion,” Buskens said. “Some people who aren’t even in those classes want to come just to be a part of it.”

The “Blast,” she added, it also becoming something of a family affair.

“It is tying in in all kinds of ways,” Buskens said. “We have married couples, for example one might be from the Class of 1984 and the other the Class of 1982.

“We have siblings because a lot of us had brothers and sisters going through Port St. Joe High School during that time.”

One detail served as an additional magnet; the music.

Buskens owns an antique store on Reid Ave. next to a clothing store owned by Lauren Spring, who with husband Bo, fronts the Bo Spring Band.

Buskens said she and Lauren Spring have become close and she decided one day to ask Lauren about the possibility of the band playing the reunion.

During a recent album release concert by the band at the Port Theatre, Buskens broached the idea with Bo.

“He said he didn’t think they had anything that weekend and why not, they would love to,” Buskens said. “People can’t believe they are playing. So many of us are fans.

“Everybody is really excited.”

Food for the event will include a low country boil and smoked pork loin BBQ, with sodas, water and tea served with the meal.

There will be a cash bar with beer, wine and liquor (proceeds from bar sales go toward reunion costs, no coolers or outside alcohol).

The cost is $35 in advance.

They can be purchased at The Loft, 207 Reid Ave., or contact Buskens at 227-8669.