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The turnout for the joint 2012 swim team reunion was excellent and once again it was a resounding success.
Approximately 15 ex-swimmers and their families attended the reunion.
Below is a rogue's gallery of ex-swimmers who attended.Click here to enlarge the photograph
Meet and Greet at the Hideaway: 3pm - 5pm
As with the previous reunions, we met for a couple of hours at the Hideaway where we ate pizza and drank beer.
Richard Baldwin and Dennis Altendolf joined us this year. It was good to see them after so many years.
We had an area reserved to ourselves inside the Hideaway where we sat and ate pizza, drank beer and reminisced about the good old days. A great deal of "do you remember this?" and "do you remember that?" resounded around the room.
Then it was off for the group picture.
As usual it was like rounding up cats and it took a great deal of time to get everybody over there. The beer and the pizza were starting to react with one another and there was a lot of burping and "excuse me" going on. Or, at least I think it was burping!
Group Photo in front of Old Central: 5:30pm - 6:30pm
All those who turned up to the Hideaway then walked over to Old Central and a professional photographer took group photographs (see pictures at top of the page) again of the "usual suspects" - phrase from the film Casablanca starring Humphrey Bogart.
Another year has passed, but nothing had changed. You can see we all have been working out and a suggestion was put forward that we all enter the Master's swimming Championships. I think we all agreed that it would be the 2020 Masters.
It was also mentioned that the Rio Olympics is only 4 years away and we had time to prepare and swim in it too. Yeah right! We were suffering from delusions of grandeur brought on by too much beer.
Hot Links Rehearsal: 8pm - 12 midnight
The rehearsal gig this year was again held at the old Harley Roadhouse repair shop at 3512 S Boomer Road.
The gig was organised so that the band could get ready to play live at Mexico Joes on Saturday night.
The band comprised of Dave Biddick - lead guitar, Ron "Woody" Woodburn AKA "The Nub" on drums, Tom Allen on Rhythm guitar, Bill Allen lead singer, flute player, Sax player, announcer et al and Tom's son on base.
Unfortunately Tom Grula couldn't make it this year, so Tom Allen's son and a friend of the band kindly agreed to alternate playing base guitar.
Swimmers and their families all turned up and the place was packed.
Beer and snacks were supplied by the Hot Link's groupies AKA the wives of the band. The place was rocking!
The band played all types of music and people were dancing and singing along with them. The night was a great success. Well done to the Hot Links.
Swimming Relays: 10am - 12noon
We met at the pool around 10am.
We had enough swimmers for 4 teams and this year the girl swimmers joined in. There were a couple of spare swimmers who swapped in and out with other swimmers during the fun relays.
We held 6 races each one a different format - one was freestyle, another a mixture of stokes, and another everybody swam backwards (for some backwards was the same as forwards).
After one of the relays we found Peter Frieson on the bottom of the pool. He was doing his usual 2 strokes and 20 bubbles. John Meyer (AKA The Pig) had a foot stuck in a gutter and there were kick boards flying everywhere.
And, there were a lot of bubbles coming to the surface of the pool and they weren't coming from Peter Friesen.
Woody kept getting out of the pool to go to the restroom. He said his incontinence was bothering him.
After the relay races we found a waterpolo ball and off to the spring boards we went.
Some background here: Back in the 70s after workout we would play with the polo ball on the springboards. The idea was to throw the ball to people as they jumped off the 3 mtr springboard, that person would try to catch it and throw it to another person jumping off of the other 3 mtr springboard who would try to catch it and throw it to another person jumping off of the 1 mtr springboard and so on.
The record back in those days was 8 catches before the ball was dropped.
I don't think we managed any catches this year. We even had to talk down one swimmer from the 1mtr spring board. His excuse was that he was afraid of heights and suffered from vertigo.
After the relays and fun on the springboards, we dried off, got dressed and headed off to Buffalo Wild Wings to watch the OSU football game on their TV screens.
Buffalo Wild Wings 3pm
We met up at Buffalo Wildwings to watch the OSU vs Kansas game. OSU won 20-14.
The food was good and the game exciting, and the conversation even better.
As you can see Peter Friesen was really enthralled with the game.
Hot Link live gig at Mexico Joe's: 8pm - 12midnight
The Hot Links played a live gig at Mexico Joe's. The place was full and the boys were rocking.
This time the Hot Links played inside instead of outside on the patio.
The place was packed and the non-reunion people eating at Mexico Joes rocked along with us.
The Links did us proud. The music lifted the rafters and the margaritas were going done hard and fast. What an evening!
Towards the end of the evening, Stan Clark the CEO of Eskimo Joe's T-shirts and the owner of Mexico Joe's restaurant stepped up and sang "Mustang Sally" accompanied by the band.
When you own the restaurant and are as famous as Stan you just can't say "no you can't sing with us"! Stan belted out the lyrics to Mustang Sally along with Big Bill Allen and the band backed him up.
There is a rumour that Stan is asking the band to go on tour with him. It maybe just a rumour though!
Those of us that turned up stayed until the end and had a thoroughly enjoyable evening.
On Sunday there was no final gathering. Some of us met for breakfast in downtown Stillwater and talked about the weekend as we consumed our eggs and bacon. All agreed we had a great time.
After breakfast each of us went our seperate ways. We had laughed together and had become reacquainted - the years had been pushed back. We left somewhat sad, but happy that we had attended.
2013 Reunion Details.
We will be holding another reunion in Stillwater on the weekend of the 11th-13th, October 2013. Please keep this weekend clear and come and join in on the fun.
Details of the activities will be posted on the website at a latter date.
Negotiations are currently going on with Stan Clark and he will probably allow the Links to use one of his Stillwater restaurants again for a live gig.
If you know of any ex-swimmers who haven't joined us yet, please send us their details and we will add them to the "Member's List".