Town Crier: Of Skyline High reunion, Montclair notes

MONTCLARION: July 10, 2016

Almost a half-century ago, the Skyline High class of 1966 poured out the doors of their hilltop school, wide-eyed and ready to take on the world. They were a close-knit bunch, according to Lafayette’s Anne Grodin — one of 630 students to graduate that year.

Now, she’s hoping they’ll come together for a landmark reunion in October 2016 — an event that takes 18 months to plan. Part of the challenge is finding everyone.

“We have addresses for 400 but don’t know if they’re still good,” she says, noting that not everyone has emails. “We were the generation before all that.”

The class of ’66 did have computer programming, though. Grodin remembers a giant computer being housed in a portable classroom. The students used IBM cards as part of their math class.

She remembers her high school years as a time of hope — with the space race — and despair, with the Kennedy assassination. But through it all, there was unity.

“We had a lot of school spirit,” she remembers. Everybody went to the football games. Our stands were always full, even though they were afternoon games. No Friday night lights for us.”

If you graduated from the Skyline High class of 1966, or know someone who did, your reunion will be held at Sequoia Country Club on Oct. 1, 2016. For more information, email

Montclair NOTES: From the “who knew” file, I hear that a student intern designed and printed the Montclair Village sign that says: “Welcome to Montclair; Population: Everyone.” The Montclair Village Association’s Daniel Swafford says the MVA taps students from Cal State East Bay, UC Berkeley and local high schools (including Fred Finch) to learn marketing. “The sign concept and population is something I’ve been thinking about for a while, and it fits good for Montclair. You look around on a busy afternoon, and there really is a little bit of everyone, and everyone is welcome,” Swafford says.

Meanwhile, time is flying for Sophie’s Cuppa Tea, 2078 Antioch Court. Owner John Brown says the specialty tea shop turned 1 year old last month and will celebrate from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday with food, drink and a lion dance to bless the store and the Village. Partygoers can try any or all of the 80 hand-selected teas John has brought back from China. Check with the shop at 510-500-3404 for tickets, which are $68 purchased in advance, $88 at the door.

It’s a party in the parking lot when Red Oak Realty shows its summer Saturday movies. A DJ gets families on their feet and the movies are projected outdoors in a makeshift lawn chair theater. The neighboring business, Crufit, kicks in for the popcorn. Next up: “Big Hero 6” on Saturday. Doors open at 7 p.m.

And Supercuts has opened next to Peet’s. The line I predicted would form for cheap haircuts has not materialized.

Email bag: Speaking of lines, reader Michael Levy says folks are queuing up at Beauty’s Bagel Shop on Telegraph Avenue. “The crowds are huge,” he says. “I guess it is just one of North Oakland’s hot spots like the Blue Bottle Coffee on Broadway in the Morse Building. No rhyme or reason — just the “in” spot.” Or it could be that lots of folks want wood-fired bagels and really, really fresh roasted coffee.

Got news? You can reach Ginny Prior by email at or on the web at


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