Burbank High School celebrates 100 years of memories
By Tyrone Harris, Staff Writer
Pep rallies, singing in the choir, water polo matches and eating double-decker burgers - along with homework and tests - are memories that will be shared this year as alumni of Burbank High School celebrate the school's 100th anniversary.
The school, which opened its doors Sept. 14, 1908, plans a host of events - including monthly luncheons, a special June 28 alumni picnic, and publication of a centennial memory book of alums' stories - leading up to the anniversary celebration, which runs Sept. 11-14.
Pulling off a year of events and rounding up many of the thousands of students who attended the school was no small feat, said David Thompson, U.S. history teacher and committee chairman for the centennial.
"It was difficult to put this together because no one has ever written about the history of the school," he said. "We used the Internet to find the alums, to track them down, and through word of mouth.
"There's more to this than the centennial. There will be a rededication of the war memorial and the new gym on campus."
And there are all those memories to catalog:
Lisa Rubino, who graduated from Burbank High in 1986, has memories of eating at Tommie's during the mid-'80s and first driving a car. Jim Wakeman, a 1950 graduate, recalled being a member of Burbank High's choir and participating in two musicals, listening to Glenn Miller recordings and taking English classes.
Soo Ho Park, who graduated in 2006, was thrilled after Burbank's team beat rival John Burroughs High in water polo; he also recalls going to the school dances and being accepted into the U.S. Military Academy.
The Sept. 11, 2001, attacks happened on the day Beverly M. Hughes was to have her school photo taken, she remembers. A better memory for the 2006 grad was the school's Spirit Week, a school tradition.
And 1971 grad Keith Myatt remembers hanging out at Bob's Big Boy after games, listening to Blood, Sweat & Tears, being a drum major - and recalling the assassination of presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy and hearing the news of classmates who had been killed in Vietnam.
The four-day celebration in September includes the Class of 1948's 60th reunion at the Castaway, followed by campus tours, a golf tournament, an athletic hall of fame ceremony and a Saturday parade beginning at McCambridge Park and ending at the school.
Other events during centennial weekend include a tailgate party followed by a football game, Burbank vs. Chaminade, alumni bands, dances and recognition of distinguished alumni and teachers.
Famous alums include actresses Kim Fields, Debbie Reynolds and Blake Lively; Jaimee Foxworth from "Family Matters," Anson Williams from "Happy Days," Olympic swimmer Kathy Ferguson and film director Tim Burton.
Current Burbank school board president and 1975 grad Debbie Kukta - who played on the school's first softball team that won the CIF state championship - said former athletes will be honored to have their banners raised.
Centennial planners are still trying to reach alumni. Past or present students can sign up to attend the 100th anniversary activities by visiting the centennial Web site: https://www.burbankhigh100.com/page_loader.php?p_id=1.
Carhops at Glendale Bob's with Arnold Peterson (L) and Bob Wian (R)