The Second Sunnyside Stories Hour
April 30, 2021
Readings and Reunion for our Time
Adjusting to the special conditions of this year - the pandemic, our ages and personal circumstances - and because we wanted to see our community from across the miles, Grace and I decided it was time for a Zoom gathering. Grace, the initiator, I, her happy first participant.
On April 30th, seventy-five former Sunnysiders got together on Zoom to hear a presentation of twelve Sunnyside stories. Former Sunnysiders "came from" California and from London, England, from Florida and from Nova Scotia and Ontario, Canada. And of course, from New York City and environs. Grace and I were delighted to welcome you all.
While the Zoom experience constrains human interaction, and no hugs were exchanged, this lack was barely noticeable as we entered the main gallery - people called out and talked over each other in their effort to greet old friends and neighbors. Bursts of laughter and squeals punctuated the air as people recognized each other. And as several attendees pointed out, the noise and exuberance were absolutely fitting for a Sunnyside gathering, and this event might have been more suitably situated at the corner of 43rd Street and Skillman Avenue. And so the tone was set for the rest of the day; much like a reunion in normal times...
We had twelve presenters of stories who spoke well. Someone sang. Most stories were recently written with some also coming from the website collection. Their subject matter ranged from the serious to the entertaining, from politics to play. All of them were personal and touching and celebratory of our childhood homes and haunts in Sunnyside.
The event drew people from those born in the early 1930s to those born in the late 1940s. Once the stories had been presented, people separated into small groups to further chat about the day's event and share memories. Old friends found each other and new friends were made. Comments and contributions tell us it was a very successful event. We thank everyone who took part, and hope you keep this memory alive as the genial occasion it was.
May 8, 2021