Students, teachers turn out at Dist. 88 open house

NEW ULM – Dozens of former Independent School District (ISD) 88 students and teachers turned out at open houses Saturday at New Ulm High School and the former middle school to greet and talk about old times with each other, view historical displays and yearbooks.

Former ISD 88 staff at the open house included Jim Senske, Dick LaPatka, Conrad and Bette Trapp, Joe Poncin, Jim Schmidt, Lowell Liedman, Jim Pearson, Virg Debban, John Ingebritson, and Leo Traurig. Students at the open houses included the Class of 1973 which is holding its 40th reunion.

One of the purposes of the open house was to generate interest in the recently-created ISD 88 non-profit Foundation created to enhance the quality of education throughout the district and an Alumni Committee, whose goal is to create an Alumni Association.

The Alumni is creating a database of more than 10,000 alumni who graduated from the district since 1936. The group is seeking names, addresses, phone numbers and e-mail addresses of all living graduates. A periodic newsletter will be sent to all alumni to keep them informed of District 88 news, programs, awards, accomplishments and needs.

The Alumni Association plans to create a Wall of Fame to honor NUHS graduates who have distinguished themselves in business and professional careers, academia, fine arts, and athletics.

Future plans include an awards banquet to honor awards recipients. Alumni volunteers will help locate and nominate peers for these awards. The open house was the first organized alumni event.

Alumni are sought to present ideas for planning and hosting future events. Foundation board members are Chairperson Tracie Vranich, Vice Chairperson Tim Knaak, Treasurer Marka Stocker, Secretary Maryls Zetah, Carisa Buegler, Tamara Furth, Jayne Jensen, Devin Nelson, Jim Schmidt, Jim Senske, Bill Steinke, Rachel Suess, Jim Thomas and Supt. Jeff Bertrang.

The foundation is independent of the school district, Friends of ISD 88 and elementary school Friends groups.

Volunteers are sought for the Eagles 5000 5k and kids 1k fun run on Saturday, Sept. 7, a fund-raiser for ISD 88. Contact Chris Rosenhamer at

For more information or to contribute to the foundation, contact Vranich or Stocker at

Fritz Busch can be e-mailed at

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