Class of '86
September 2006

20-Year Reunion― October 6 & 7, 2006

Dear 1986 classmates,

A funny thing happened to me on my drive to work the other day…

The talk show hosts were discussing the fact that 1980’s fashions were back in style.  I was laughing so hard I almost had to pull over.  I flashed back to the look of leggings, long hair styled with a curling iron, a big bow or chip clip protruding from someone’s head, and other scary fashion statements from the ’80s.  People were calling in to share their worst fashion statement.  Luckily, I don’t have children of the age who will be wearing some of these fashions around the house…yet.

The 80’s…what a great time to be a college student at Gustavus:

  • The drinking age was 19
  • Chapel wasn’t required
  • Faculty was accessible
  • The Barn
  • Daily Chapel
  • The Canteen
  • Myrum Memorial Fieldhouse
  • Lund Center
  • 3 for 1 at the Flame
  • Seven-mile Creek
  • Roommates
  • The Nic
  • Chaplain Elvee
  • Movies in Alumni Hall
  • Banquets
  • Christmas in Christ Chapel
  • Schoop’s
  • Swede Park
  • Co-ed’s Sauna
  • New Uhler Hall
  • Senior Week
  • President Kendall

Fill in the blanks with your own personal favorites:

  • ________________________
  • ____________________
  • ___________________
  • ________________________
  • ____________________
  • ___________________

We did have our issues:

·        Resident’s Hall Director

·        Freshman roommates

·        Hazing incident

·        The REDS  (I can say that because I am a RED)

·        The Barn

·        Some of the faculty

·        The Caf Food (but now Steve Kjellgren’86 is running the food service at Gustavus and the food is fantastic).

Fill in the blanks with your own personal disappointments:

·        ______________________________

·        ______________________________

·        ______________________________

·        ______________________________

I hope all that was good about Gustavus is what you remember most!

I hope you plan on attending our 20th reunion on October 7.  I have heard from many who said they would not attend another reunion until it moved back to campus…now is your time…the Alumni Office listened and activities are back up on the hill.  Campus will be jammed with people…and the class of 1986 will be well represented.

Saturday, October 7 ― 1986 Tent by Old Main

11:00 a.m. – Pre-Game Party

4:00 p.m. – Post-Game Dinner

Register by returning your registration form that you should have received in the mail or go online at:

Let’s also cast our vote of confidence in Gustavus and its current students by making your gift to the Gustavus Alumni Fund today.  You have lots of philanthropic priorities and I ask that Gustavus moves to the top of that list this year…in our 20th Reunion.  Gusties need our help!  Give the gift of Gustavus to students who are experiencing Gustavus in much the same way we did 20 years ago…except tuition was $7,250 and we could lock it in for four years.  Now it’s at $26,310!  Gustavus is a very frugal place and could do so much more if it had the resources (I am speaking from experience as I worked there from ’99 to ’05).

See you in October!!!!

Go Gusties!!!!!

Jim Isaak

1986 Reunion Committee Member

Other fun facts (and not so fun facts) from 1986:

Politics and History

  • The world's worst nuclear accident took place when a reactor blew up at Chernobyl Power Station
  • U.S. warplanes bomb Libya
  • New Zealand refuses to admit nuclear warships into port- the U.S. and Australia suspend the ANZUS alliance
  • Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson are married and become the Duke and Duchess of York
  • Space Shuttle Challenger explodes after take-off


·        Record of the Year:  “Higher Love” by Steve Winwood

·        Album of Year:  Graceland by Paul Simon

·        Song of the Year:  “That’s What Friends are For” by Burt Bacharach and Carole Bayer Sayer

·        Best New Artist:  Bruce Hornsby and the Range

·        Best Rock Vocal:  “Addicted to Love” by Robert Palmer

·        Producers of the Year:  Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis


·        Best Picture:  Platoon

·        Best Actor:  Paul Newman, The Color of Money

·        Best Actress:  Marlee Matlin, Children of a Lesser God

·        Best Music:  “Take My Breath Away” from Top Gun


·        World Series Champs:  New York Mets defeated the Boston Red Sox 4 games to 3

·        Super Bowl Champs:  Chicago Bears 46 New England Patriots 10

·        NBA Champs:  Boston Celtics defeated the Houston Rockets 4 games to 2

·        Stanley Cup Champs:  Montreal Canadians defeated the Calgary Flames

·        U. S. Open Champions:  Men:  Ivan Lendl  Women:  Martina Navratilova


This year’s incoming freshman class is 682 strong (plus 44 transfer students) with a 58% to 42% female/male ratio.  Twenty percent of the freshmen are from out-state; 37% of them come from the top10% of their class and 10.5 % of the incoming class are students of color.  Also, there are 70 first year student that are second generation Gusties!