Saturday, January 7, 2012

2011 SMAD Grand Alumni Homecoming

“2011 SMAD Grand Alumni Homecoming”
Sun,Star Davao, Jan. 7, 2012

It was an alumni homecoming close to my heart.

Twenty five years ago, during the year of the historic EDSA Revolution, I graduated from grade school while my eldest brother Jason, from high school at Stella Maris Academy of Davao (SMAD).

My brother’s batch and I shared the same yearbook and I was friends with most of his batchmates, having grown up with them throughout my grade school years.

And, so, when the time came for old friends to meet again together with other fellow alumni at the 2011 SMAD Grand Alumni Homecoming hosted by the Silver Jubilarians, Batch 1986, I definitely made sure not to miss the occasion!

Held at the SMAD Skygym last December 28, 2011, the Mardi Gras-themed homecoming successfully gathered close to 900 alumni, teachers and guests—the biggest attendance in history by far.

As guests arrived, a ménage of mime performers, stilt walkers, circus jugglers and fire dancers greeted them. The stage was impressively livened up with animated Mardi Gras materials including huge multicolored masks and New Orleans-inspired Blues band decorations.

Acting as the program emcees were ABS-CBN TV host and M magazine editor-in-chief Ian Ray Garcia of SMAD Batch ’90 and the lovely Dr. Sheila Marie Quiachon-Hernandez of Batch ’86.

Topping the event was special celebrity guest actress-comedienne Candy Pangilinan whose jokes and antics fired up the night to the non-stop delight of the attendees. The witty host did not even spare the Hijas De Jesus sisters who gamely answered her very personal questions.

The host batch, headed by its president Wilson Lu, has been busy preparing for the homecoming for two years.

To ease everyone’s pockets, ticket prices were kept at a minimal amount of P150, inclusive of dinner buffet from Dencio’s Kamayan; dessert buffet from Red Ribbon; eat-all-you-can tuna from Marina Tuna, roasted calf and lechon; drink-all-you-can San Miguel Beer and Tanduay Mixed Drinks; as well as free souvenir photos. As a further treat, the ticket cost included a chance to win raffles prizes such as Samsung cellphones, digital cameras, laptop and 32-inch LCD TV.

Showcasing the event was Batch ’86’s well-applauded production number which featured the greatest music hits and dances of their time.

On the other hand, a very intimate and touching highlight of the event was the audio-visual presentation paying tribute in memoriam to former Prefect of Discipline and Scout Master Feliciano Puno who was a highly revered father figure to many Marisians and responsible in their character formation as well as socio-civic orientation.

With emotions brimming with nostalgia, the Silver Jubilarians called on their elementary and high school teachers and surprised them with gifts of microwave ovens and cellphones; and TV sets, respectively.

Culminating the program was the SMAD Ceremonial Mace Turnover by Batch ’86 to Batch ’87 headed by president Patrick David Lim, who will be the host for this year’s alumni homecoming.

Cheers to Batch ’86 for the mega success of the 2011 SMAD Grand Alumni Homecoming!

SMAD Batch ’86 would like to thank SMAD directress Sr. Lourdes Marzoña; Doming Ang of Marina Tuna; Wilson Bangayan of Red Ribbon; Albert Garcia and Jiggs Calixto of Coca Cola; and Gerald Co of Tanduay; for their wholehearted support to the 2011 SMAD Grand Alumni Homecoming.

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