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Saying goodbye to an old friend

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Journal Staff

Years of sorting and cataloguing artifacts will culminate on April 28 with a final public viewing of SCITS memorabilia prior to the school closing.

The walk down memory lane from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. is the work of the Great Lakes Secondary School history and memorabilia committee, comprised of 20 school and community representatives.

A highlight will be the 11 a.m. opening of a SCITS time capsule from the school’s northeast corner and originally sealed on Aug. 9, 1921.

It’s expected to contain a history of Sarnia schools, bottles of oil manufactured by Imperial Oil, silver and copper coins, a 1921 city directory, and a history of the local Indigenous community by Francis W. Jacobs, Chief from 1901 to 1907.

For the past couple of years the committee has been identifying, collecting and photographing historical artifacts from the city’s oldest high school, which is more formally known as Sarnia Collegiate Institute & Technical School.

SCITS and St. Clair Secondary were amalgamated by the Lambton Kent District School Board in 2016 to create Great Lakes Secondary.

Really significant items will be retained for display at the renovated Great Lakes school site at 340 Murphy Road, scheduled to open in September.

However, much of the memorabilia will be available to the public to view in the cafeteria and acquire for a donation. Funds raised will be used to support students in financial need.

Athletic jerseys from both SCITS and St. Clair will be available for sale in the main gym of the school, which is located at 275 Wellington St.

“For people who just walk to walk around and have a look at the building, this is a great day to do that,” said Great Lakes principal Paul Wiersma.

Other special events include a barbecue and an alumni basketball game, with proceeds supporting school athletics.

Student work is on display in the visual arts classes, and the Class of ’74 will be providing free refreshments.

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