Orange High Class of 1973, 50th Class Reunion
Orange High Class of 1973, 50th Class Reunion

Orange High Class of 1973, 50th Class Reunion

Orange High School class of 1973 is planning their 50th reunion, calling the event “A Reunion to Remember.”

“It’s a play on us getting up in age, and it’s time to start remembering the great things that have happened over the years,” says Tari Parsons, who is on the planning committee.

“One great thing about our class was that all of the groups got along—whether you were an auto shop guy or an athlete,” says Steve Walker, also on the planning committee.

Parsons recalls being in the Interact Club, an offshoot of Rotary.  She also notes it was the first year girls were allowed to wear pants.  “Before that it was skirts or dresses only, and they had to be a certain length,” she says.

The guys had their rules to live by as well.  “If your sideburns crept below your earlobes, you had to go see Mr. Garrison in the men’s locker room.  He would use his old razor,” says Walker.

There were 689 students in the graduating class of 1973, which was the last class to be affected by the draft.

“We were all pretty worried about it,” says Walker.  “I got a draft number but never got drafted.”

The Orange Drive-In Theater was a popular hangout at the time. Students also shopped at the Orange Plaza for back to school clothes at JC Penny, Buster Brown Shoes, Pinsons and Army Navy for PE clothes.

“Bullocks and Buffums were down the road and considered high-end,” says Walker, noting that the Orange Mall was also a hang out.  “Most of the shops were women’s clothes, so all the girls worked there, and all the guys would go to the mall to see the girls.  We would wear our letterman jackets.  The Villa Park and El Modena guys would also be there, and we all became friends.”

Mr. Tobler taught the Ag program.  “It was a big part of our school—a great source of pride,” says Walker.

This was the second class to play football games at Fred Kelly Stadium, a field shared with El Modena and Villa Park High Schools (Canyon didn’t exist yet).  Before that, they were played at Chapman College.

Seniors took classes that could become careers, such as fashion or construction technology.  The medical occupation class was held at Chapman General Hospital.  In a class called Consumer Homemaking, students learned to write checks and how to rent an apartment.

There was also a class called senior problems, later renamed social psychology, taught by Jim Heideke, a popular teacher in the 1970s and 1980s.

“Orange is such a closeknit family,” says Parsons.  “It’s our fondness for Orange that brings us all together.”

The reunion will take place October 7 at the Doubletree in Orange (now Hotel Fera).  For more information, email [email protected]

Orange High School 50th Class Reunion
“A Reunion to Remember”

Article Published in the
Sep / Oct 23 edition of the Old Towne Orange Plaza Review
Written by Sheri Ledbetter Photos provided courtesy of OHS Class of 73
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