Lawrence School students fete golden agers at annual brunch

| 28 Sep 2011 | 02:48

    WANTAGE-On May 10, students and teachers of the Clifton E. Lawrence Elementary School in Wantage welcomed nearly 100 Sussex-Wantage senior citizens to the Fourth Annual Senior Citizen Brunch. Seventy parents contributed to the sumptuous meal, which included French toast, quiches, breakfast casseroles, assorted muffins, Danish pastries and bagels. The students welcomed each guest with a card and a handcrafted crepe paper boutonnière and entertained the seniors royally with stories, songs and poems while they dined. "This a great moment," said interim principal Joseph Kulick, "We've never had a larger group, and the staff and parents have organized everything beautifully." Kulick noted that he is 68 years old himself, and thus qualified as a senior citizen. Kulick extolled the organizational skills and loving care of preschool teacher Pam Cordts and parent-volunteer Dr. Maureen Mitchell and gave them credit for the event's success. "I came to see old friends, and most of all the see the children. They are so lovely," said Cleo Raiola of Wantage. Waiting hand-in-hand for their meal, Janet Dutko and Donald Touw remarked that they too had come to visit with old friends and to delight in the children. The couple explained that they had gone to school together in Wantage years ago, but had lost touch with one another for many years. They met again at the grocery store, had again become the best of friends, and planned to enjoy one another's company for years to come. The program featured songs by Mr. Rocco's students, who had multiple handicaps, enthusiastically assisted by their student helpers; Ms. Bregraft's first grade class singing the grandparent song; and special songs by Mrs. Cordts and Ms. Farrell kindergarten class; Mrs. Zeiger's first grade, Mrs. Wilson's first grade; Mrs. Brown's first grade; Mrs. Demeter's second grade, and Mrs. Bortnick and Mrs. Tavaloro second grade. "My granddaughter is in first grade here," Barbara Tracy offered. "The food is so good, and this is such a nice event. I love to watch the children."