It’s a collaborative effort between the school faculty, alumni, parent association and parishioners, said Principal Dana McCann. She’s been principal for one year, and has used the time to learn the school’s history and about the people who came before herself.
“We wanted to do something special,” McCann said. “We want to show all of the wonderful things our graduates have gone on to achieve, as well as highlight how special our school community is.”
In addition to celebrating the success of OLMCA over the decades, organizers hope to raise $50,000 in order to upgrade the school’s two community spaces, the school yard and gymnasium.
The gala night will feature a living museum which contains artifacts, pictures and yearbooks.
Since the school didn’t have a reunion the last few years, one of their focuses was to have representation from every decade. The school expects about 200 guests for the gala, with alumni coming in from as far as Florida.
Monsignor John McGuirl, a pastor at the school, attended Our Lady of Mercy Church before the school was built. He was ordained 45 years ago and returned to the church 10 years ago, when he was finally able to see how much the school had grown since 1967.
Local businesses, such as The Community House, Soccer Friends USA, Father & Son Florist and 5 Burros, have offered their support. Many the businesses owners are also parishioners.
There’s been a lot of support from the community as well, with one parishioner donating DJ services and another providing auction items and flowers.
Angela Martin, president of the school's Board of Directors, is also president of the West Side Tennis Club, where the event will be held. As part of its initiative to contribute to the local community, the West Side Tennis Club has held programs teaching tennis to OLMCA students.
Alumni who have questions, want to donate or are interested in contributing items to the living museum can reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org. Tickets for the event are available at www.olmercyca.org.
“We’re hoping for a success and we’re hoping this will jump start more events, even with alumni organizing them,” McGuirl said.