The Ellsworth High School Class of 1971 hosted its 50th class reunion Saturday, Oct. 2 at Ridgetop in rural Prescott and according to Vicki Cobian, had a “terrific turnout.”
The committee of six began planning in the Spring after vaccines came out. Cobian said the Ridgetop was the answer to a “pandemic prayer” where they could gather more than 100 people in an outdoor venue safely.
“We were delighted to find this beautiful outdoor venue at the Ridgetop, which was ‘The Virginian’ to us 50 years ago, when it would’ve been used by teenagers on prom night and for other special occasions,” Cobian said.
The reunion drew 105 people, with more than 70 being members of the 1971 class. The group honored memories of 14 classmates who have died since graduation. Military veterans stood for recognition. A short program included an open mic portion, at which Bill Kind (currently of Rice Lake) shared memories of being the class’s science teacher at Ellsworth Junior High, his first year of teaching.
Attendees received a souvenir directory and a group photo. A local DJ provided music and everyone had a great time catching up on each other’s lives. They are looking forward to 2026!
Submitted by Vicki Cobian
(Front, from left): Kenton Coulson, Sue Plank Holst, Kay Nelson Towers, Clinton Johnson, Randy Gunderson, Denise Anderson Neiderhauser, Rita Pechacek Cudd, Joan Monett Baillargean, Lila McCrae, Julie Fischer Duberowski, Shirley Christenson, Ron Hague, Kenton Strand. Row 2: Ruth Klecker Robey, Vicki Swanson Cobian, Charlie Hager, Dan Peterson, Terry Young, Roger Laughnan, Rick Foley, Rick O'Connell, Joan McCormack Foley, LaRae Schwarztrauber Ekblad, Alice Harding Celt, Pat Johnson Nelson, Mary Lee Huppert Trok, Jill Peterson Hague, Gene Thompson. Row 3: Barry Helmueller, Rita Beardsley Sumter, Marleen Ryden Johnson, Ruth Rice Weinberg, Pam Loberg Hegseth, Jeanne Conroy Foy, Carol Hines O'Connell, Rita Julian McArt, Carleen Ryden Tellinghausen, Cindy Johnson Baird, Donnie Hines, Teri Deiss Calistro, Maxine Johnson Lusk, Susan Strusz Sebion, Kathy Johnson Young, Diann Gutting Holcomb. Row 4: Rod Johnson, Jeff Boigenzahn, Dave Voelker, Greg Fleming, Neil Gulbranson, Don Jilk, Jim Olson, Dennis Skarman, Craig Nelson, Randy Dodge, Laura Johnsen Telschow, Roger Christopherson, Colleen Horn Harris, Jonette Blomquist Peterson, Debbie Fenske Morgan, Mary Giefer Cernohous, Gordy Truesdill. Photo courtesy of Vicki Cobian