The annual ‘Summer in the City Beirut’ alumni reunion always sparks feelings that are hard to describe; it’s not like any other alumni event. At the end of June, Alumni greeted each other with tight hugs, screams and smiles that filled the Rabbit Field with happiness and love. It is on this same field that most alumni spent their high school days getting to know each other, having lunch and building on friendships that will last a lifetime.
Some haven’t been back since they graduated and others have attended more than a few reunions. For the Class of 2017, this was a first. As for the Class of 2007, this was a celebration of a 10-year milestone, marked by the much-anticipated opening of their time capsule. With a couple of lay-overs and long flights all the way from Mexico, San Francisco, New York, Boston, Texas, London, Dubai, Qatar and Saudi Arabia, the Class of 2007 came together to celebrate.
With 29 members present, the Class of 2007 had the largest number of alumni for a 10-year reunion in the last 8 years. Sura Zaatari ’07 described her feelings like being on a rollercoaster, excited to see everyone but also very nervous to see how things have changed over ten years. Others like Amanda Kennedy ’07 said “I’ve been waiting for this day since I graduated and I always planned on coming back to Beirut for it.” Nadim Abou Alwan '07 said “you don’t appreciate what you have at ACS until you go out” and Diana Abbas '07 commented, “ACS gave us the independence and confidence to choose our own path instead of following a specific one.”
Summer in the City Beirut witnessed over 110 alumni; it was the Class of 2016 that had the most attendees but the 80’s gang was the most senior and held down the fort with 8 members organized by John Nohos ’88 (FAC), Maria Bashshur Abunnasr ’84 (BOG), Michael Bashshur ’86 and Michael Alfa ’88 who was at his first ACS reunion.
Welcomed by Danai El Hajj Ibrahim ’06, Director of Alumni and Community Relations, many had the chance to win an alumni t-shirt through small trivia questions about ACS. Tala Arakji ’07, the reunion agent for the 10-year celebration spoke to her class reminiscing some special memories of their senior year followed by a video highlighting the class and a celebratory cake. Sparklers filled the Rabbit Field and everyone rejoiced for the Class of 2007.
Soon after, Rami Yashruti ’07 and Jad Ghaziri ’07 led their class to the most anticipated moment, as they got their hands dirty, and plunged shovels into the ground to excavate their time capsule. Letters, photos, cd’s, jersey’s, newspaper, football, and an old back pack were among the items in the capsule. Even pair of signed Stan Smith sneakers, owned by Khaled Jalanbo ’07, were pulled out from among the items. Khaled could probably wear them today since they are back in fashion.
Looking around, seeing our alumni engaged, catching up, walking down memory lane, laughing and happy signifies what makes our ACS community so special.