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Alcoa alumni practice face-to-face social networking

Even in an era of social networking websites like Facebook, there are still old high school friends who communicate regularly face-to-face.

The Alcoa Alumni Association meets at 9 a.m. on the first Wednesday of every month at Shoney’s, 1028 Airport Hwy in Alcoa, for breakfast and a program.

President of the association Carolyn McClurg said, “We just want to stay in touch. We have the best time.”

The group not only meets to stay connected, they also work to support the Alcoa City Schools Foundation.

McClurg said, “We try to help them any way we can.” Last year the association contributed funds for new equipment for the middle school and high school football teams.

According to McClurg, the monthly group is primarily alumni from the graduating classes of the 1950s and 1960s.

“We’d love to have some of the younger people come and join us, but most of them are still working and raising a family.”

The association plans annual events during the Alcoa High School Football Homecoming as well as a large Alumni Fest every five years.

Alumni Fest took place on June 26 and more than 200 alumni gathered at Alcoa High School for a presentation and lunch. Participants were from graduating classes spanning over 50 years.

McClurg said the oldest alumni was Austin Shamblin from the class of 1942 and the youngest was Mark Bennett, class of 1995.

“I think everybody really enjoyed it. We had a lot of good comments.”

McClurg said one of the highlights of the event was the virtual tour of the school and the city of Alcoa. The slide show featured photographs of how specific areas in Alcoa looked in the past, what is there now and drawings of what is proposed in the future.

“A lot of people know that Walker Supply used to be where the new CVS pharmacy is but not many people know that before Walkers, it was the Post Office.”

She said those in attendance were also impressed by their tour of the renovated elementary school. “It’s absolutely beautiful.”

She said another Alumni Event will be held in five years to continue with the over 20-year tradition of gathering every five years.

The association maintains alumni records, keeps track of class reunions and has an email database. For more information, contact Carolyn McClurg at 865-982-4363.

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