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Alumni Banquet Cancelled Due To COVID-19


April 16, 2020

Courtesy Photo

Tecumseh's most unique and longest-standing event has been cancelled.

The 119th Tecumseh Alumni Association banquet, set for May 30, will not happen this year thanks to the pandemic, according to president Robin Talley.

Talley posted a message on the association Facebook page a few days ago saying, in part:

"We are not taking this action out of fear. We are taking this action out of love and compassion for our fellow members who are elderly and who have underlying medical conditions that put them at risk. I know this decision will be unpopular in certain quarters, but when you balance the desire for a banquet against the very real possibility that the banquet could literally kill people, the choice is literally made for us."

Talley said the Alumni News, the group's annual newspaper, "will go out when it is ready, but the current deadlines for copy and publication are a bit more flexible if need be since the banquet will not be held." The newspaper is being put together now.

The association has worked out a plan to award its 19 scholarships, and has set the annual business meeting for Aug. 15 at 5 pm at the Alumni Center, followed by a cookout.

Talley, an attorney, discovered while trying to make a decision about the banquet that "according to the Constitution and By-Laws of the Association, the President is given emergency powers to move the location of the banquet, but does not have the power to cancel or change the date." That is also true of the monthly meetings.

"This is a problem that we can address at the annual business meeting, by adopting emergency by-law provisions that are allowed by Oklahoma General Corporation Act," Talley said. "This will be done for historical purposes and to give the incoming government of the association up-dated by-laws to reference in the current and future national emergencies.

"The current by-laws are preempted by the President of the United States, Centers for Disease Control, the Governor of Oklahoma, the Mayor of the City of Tecumseh and the local school districts ban of gatherings of more than 10 people."

He said some had suggested a late summer banquet, but he felt it would not be well attended and strain the association's finances. Others wanted to keep the May date, but that seemed too risky.

"I want each of you to take care and be safe during this time of tribulation for our country," said Talley. "May God's hands protect each of us and keep us safe."


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