Smith-Schmidt-Krawiec holds their 56th reunion
It was a warm, cloudless day when the flags were flowing in the breeze to welcome 73 descendants of the Smith-Schmidt-Krawiec family to their 56th Reunion. Their hosts, Joe and Rene Granata at 1881 King Road in Forestville greeted them on Saturday, Aug. 4.
The reunion actually began on Friday night where hot dogs and corn on the cob were being roasted. The 23rd wedding anniversary of Ron and Laurie Siracuse was celebrated.
The tables were covered with red tablecloths and a bouquet of red and white balloons were on each of the tables to match the Polish flag that hung alongside the American flag. The buffet table ran down the center of the tin airplane hangar building with red and white bunting around the sides.
The welcoming table was staffed by sisters Angie Smith Leone and Lillian Smith Giambra.
The door prizes were a gravity lounge chair won by Rene Granata, a Buffalo Bills plaque with the Polish Eagle donated by Jan Meadows and won by Joe Granata and a boot cleaner won by Matt Smith. The children’s toys were won by Stephanie Woods for her three sons. The 50/50 prize was won by Linda Grace Ameno and John Schmidt. There was an ever popular white elephant stand.
The buffet included Polish and Italian sausage and sweet corn grilled by John “Andy” Granata and his brother Joe. Polish cheese and potato pierogis were donated by the George and Phyllis Smith Family in their memory. Baked macaroni, salads of every description, fruits and vegetables and a large assortment of desserts were provided. Comments made indicated that the variety was endless and ” the best they could remember.” Members did a great job! Beverages were provided also.
Music was provided by Half of the Heard. To add to the enjoyment, a family member, Lou Leone (who traveled in from Indiana) joined the band to sing “Hallelujah” and “Old Man” by Neil Young.
The children’s games were organized by Alexis Granata. They included an old-fashioned sack race, a jump rope contest, a bottle ring toss, a hula hoop human ring toss, a sawdust search (money and candy was found) and a hula hoop contest. Prizes were given to all the participants. They also enjoyed the family pool and jungle gym set. Also provided was a three lane, bungee run, inflatable bounce house. The adults also enjoyed the bungee run game, corn hole game and frisbee toss.
Pictures of the event were taken by Stella Granata. A collection of photo albums, dating back to 1962 were on display on a separate table and were enjoyed by the group. It was enjoyable to look back at family members that have since departed and to see the ever-changing appearance of members.
Out of the state guests were Dominic Woods from Eugene, Oregon; Lillian and Paul Giambra from Loveland, Colorado; Kim, Maya, and Travis from Isanti, Minnesota; Lou, Kerry, Gillian, Pete Leone from Valparaiso, Indiana; Chuck and Jeanette Martin from Hudson, Ohio; John Smith and Pat Carr from Webster, Florida; and Linda San George Wagner from Concord, North Carolina (recently moving to Hamburg, New York).
The oldest member of the family was Paul Giambra. Youngest member was Gavin Scott Granata, son of Allie and Vinny Granata and grandson of Joe and Rene Granata. Most recent married couple was Aimee (Giambra) and Brian Whitney, on July 7, 2018.
The birth of Allison Grace Seavy in June 2018, to Keshia and Dan Seavy was announced. Keshia is the daughter of Blaine Burgess of Forestville.
In memory of their deceased relatives, the group formed a circle holding the red and white balloons, and said prayers while names of the most recently departed members were read. As the balloons were released, all deceased family members were remembered but especially:
Sandra M . Jackino, sister of John Schmidt and the late Robert Schmidt and Gloria Schmidt Borrello on Dec. 20, 2017; Carol Schmidt, sister of Norm Schmidt and Jim Schmidt and the late Ronald and Linda Schmidt on Feb. 25, 2018 and Audrey G. Clemens, mother of Kevin Schmidt on May 28, 2018.
A meeting for the next reunion will be in April 2019 at the VFW Club in Sheridan. All family members are invited to attend, enjoy dinner and help plan the reunion. The original cousins will be notified as to the date and time. It is the responsibility of each senior cousin to notify their children and grandchildren.
Family members who have suggestions or would like to add to the list of volunteers are asked to call Joe and Stella Granata at 672-5655. Input and suggestions are appreciated.