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Tyrone Day held in Naples, Florida

The 18th annual Tyrone Day was held at the Vineyards Country Club in Naples, Florida, on Saturday, February 23.
Sixty persons attended who have their roots in Tyrone. Festivities began at 11 a.m. with registration, followed by a social hour, luncheon and program.
Judie Black welcomed the group after the social hour and introduced Neil and Nancy Smith. Neil was the principal of the Tyrone Area High School from 1973 until his retirement in 1994. Neil’s wife, Nancy, is the president of the Tyrone Area Historical Society.
Nancy distributed the 2008 calendars, published by The Daily Herald, which pictured photos of Tyrone from yesteryears. She shared valuable information regarding the work of the Tyrone Area Historical Society. The main purpose of the organization is to preserve the history of the Tyrone area and ensure that present, as well as future generations, can share in and understand their rich heritage.
The folks attending Tyrone Day enjoyed the Tyrone Trivia questions that were placed at their tables. Who was the first man to set up housekeeping in Tyrone around 1850? Who were the doctors that made house calls in the 1940s and 1950s? What were the three shoe stores in Tyrone during the 50s? What group represented Tyrone at several Presidential Inaugural Parades in Washington DC? What Tyrone business did columnist Dorothy Kilgallen write about in the Good Housekeeping Magazine in 1953? What was the name of the man who walked the streets in order to dig up news for the Tyrone Herald? These and many other questions stimulated conversations, competition and laughter.
A large picture of the THS Class of 1939 was exhibited as well as a 1957 Tyrone Centennial banner and a photo that pictured Fred Waring flanked by the THS Sr. Girls’ Ensemble. Fred Giles won a prize for identifying every girl on the picture. Many other door prizes were awarded.
An appeal was made for donations towards the upkeep of Tyrone’s Grandview Cemetery and appreciation was expressed to Gardners Candies for the Peanut Butter Meltaway favors on the tables.
The history of Tyrone Day began in the early 1960s. Many Tyrone natives migrated to Florida around that time, and they reached out to one another to create an “old hometown” get-together. The gatherings usually took place as covered dish suppers in a park. As years went on, the parties grew and included family members from the North who came to Florida for winter vacations. As the number of participants increased, Bill and Velda Kanour moved Tyrone Day to the Vineyards Country Club.
The Kanours are largely responsible for the continuation and success of Tyrone Day. After the death of Bill Kanour, Velda passed the torch to some of the “girls” from the Tyrone Area High School Class of 1960 who now live in the Naples area. These women have kept the event going, and are trying to stimulate interest within the new generation of retirees who have a Tyrone connection.
Those in attendance were: Gayleen and Dennis Barone, Judie Black, Annis Bonsell, Carol and Jack Branter (who celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary), Bonnie and Jim Crawford, Gretta Czap, Cheri Dow, Beverly and Dave Fisher, Grant Gault, Fred Giles and daughter Megan, Esther and Jimmy Grimm, Lois and Bill Harris, Bonnie and Charles Houser, Jim Irvin, Rodney Irvin, Mary Ellen Jones, Velda Kanour, Mary Ann Keel, JoAnn and Don Kobak, Patricia and Bob Kustenbauder, Rosanna Lower, Dolly Lucas, Sherry and Norman McCall, Evelyn and Clair McClellan, Carol and Russell Miller, Mary Jane and Jim Morrissey, Mary and Jim Philage, Beverly and Chaney Reese, Barbara Sampson, Sue and Tony Singer, Nancy and Neil Smith, Florence and Max Spicer, Maddie Talasky, Jennie Tobin, Maureen and Ray Trenary, Jean Trybus, Jossie Trybus, Peggy and Larry Walker.
Anyone who is interested in attending the Tyrone Day in Naples, Florida next year, please contact: Barbara Sampson: 6145 Reserve Circle, No. 1702, Naples, Florida 34119, phone: 239-353-6564, email barbara1702@comcast.net.
Tyrone Day is always held on the last Saturday in February. Everyone is welcome.