Seniors transported to the Big Apple at Celebration on May 31

Celebration, held Friday, May 31, 2019, was a party to remember. NNHS seniors were treated to transformative decor, spellbinding entertainment, and a delicious spread. Well more than 100 students stayed through the grand prize drawing, departing only when the clean-up team rolled up their sleeves at 2:30 a.m. According to Sandy Connors's calcuations, "About 425 students claimed their bags, rechecked their bags/suits/dresses, then reclaimed their belongings at the end. That's 1300 trips back and forth to the racks by one awesome hustling team of volunteers!"

Deep appreciation is due to Celebration chair Betty Sierra for her months of organizing and people management on behalf of Newton North’s senior class! Brave Betty jumped in as a new-to-North 9th grade parent, never having even seen this event before. She kept her calm despite a steep learning curve, cheerleading and strategizing to bring together a wonderful, memorable event for seniors. Special thanks to former chair Patty McCabe, who guided Betty from start to finish. Stated Betty, "Patty talked me off the ledge a couple of times." Nice save, Patty! 

See photos from Celebration 2019 on the NNHS PTSO Facebook page. 

Words of gratitude from Betty

Celebration 2019, which featured an Evening in New York theme, was an overwhelming success, and we couldn’t be more grateful to YOU, our Newton North community! You answered our calls when we needed you and gave our seniors a great sendoff. Parents of freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors led our teams of parent/guardian volunteers—more than 160 strong—who worked tirelessly before, during, and after the event to provide a fun, festive, post-prom party for more than 510 seniors and their guests. Many of you made donations or helped connect us with community donors who assisted us in providing food, entertainment, and supplies for Celebration. We couldn’t have done it without all of you. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Our special thanks go to our area decorators and all our other team leaders for their tireless efforts over the past few months. They are Danielle Ahite, Ana Bonilla, Sally Brickell, Jennifer Conley, Sandy Connors, Christian Dupont, Marta Dupont, Giovanna Forte, Melissa Gulley, Krista Kett, Liz Martin, Patty McCabe, Lou Membrino, Lorraine Miller, Karen O’Reilly, Una Simmons, and April Stein. A few of these leaders will be “graduating,” so we thank them for their amazing help and leadership.

A super special shout out to April Stein, food team leader! She laid out a delicious spread for hungry seniors by working with her team to secure donations from 20+ area restaurants and groceries—and she made it look easy. You are a rock star!

Special gratitude goes to mentor and former Celebration chair Patty McCabe. Your vast experience and calm demeanor steadied me during the months leading up to this event. Thank you for supporting me!

We also wish to recognize the efforts of a few who worked behind the scenes to reduce costs and to secure food, paper goods, grocery items, and monetary donations from area businesses. Thank you to Jen Abbott, Ola Agoro, Kim Daley, Brian Hodgson, Ellen Jawitz, Maria Leo, Marian McDonagh, Elizabeth Reilly, Karen Tubridy, Jade Watson, and Faith Witte.

Please thank the businesses and organizations who supported this event! They are listed in the left column of the PTSO website ( 

Thank you to all our volunteers, as follows: Jen Abbott, Todd Abbott, Miriam Alandydy, Yvonne Alberts, Miranda Barrows, Jee Baum, David Baxter, Michele Baxter, Caryn Bean, Elizabeth Benedict, Mindy Berman, Joel Bloom, Eric Bobby, Naila Bolus, Christine Bonenfant, Andrea Boucher, Melissa Boucher, Julie Bourgoin, Sally Brickell, Laurel Britt-Webb, Kim Buckton, Bill Campbell, Helen Cao, Jean Cao, Lisa Carbone, Bonnie Carey, Sheila Carter, Tracy Carter, Claire Coen, Lisa Conti, Janice Copley, Denise Cremin, Beth Cronin, Jeff Dagostino, Lisa Dagostino, Debbie Dashoff, Brenda Dater, Elizabeth De Rivera, Laura DeDominicis, Teri Deodato, Cathy DeVoe, Annie Dicaire, Lauren Dietz, Margaret Doris, Chris Dufresne, Adriana Dukakis, Marta Dupont, Frieda Dweck, Christine Elder, Quinn Etchie, Isabelle Evans, Andrea Federmann, June Ferestien, Andrea Flint, Shauna Franklin, Galina Frishman, Alison Galbraith Galbraith, Sean Gallivan, Vicky Gifford, Burt Glass, Michael Gobler, Julie Goodman, Beth Gundy, Helena Han - Papakonstantinou, Linda Hanusaik, Gail Harris, Nuala Heespelink, Jennifer Heinstein, Oliver Heinz, Louisa Hunt, Jen Hyde, Monika Jain, Jessica Johnston, Carolyn Judge, Lakshmi Kadambi, Yulia Kaluzhny, Andrea Katsenes, Grace Kellman, Hope Kellman, Jody Klein, Amir Konforty, Helen Kwong, Robert Lakomski, Millicent Lawton, Brett Leav, Kathy Lee, Lisa LeRoy, Lin Li, Julie Lindstrom, Donna Manley, Kristen Marshall, Natalie Martin, Alison May, John McCabe, Patty Mccabe, Michael McDonald, Katie Mceachern, Susan McMurry, Pam McVey, Heather & Vivek Mehra, Lynn Melville, Lou Membrino, Scot Miller, Michaela Millott, Alison Montague, Jennifer Morgan, Yi nong, Angela Cedrone Dan Norton, Sami O'Reilly, Jane Obbagy, Lisa Pagana, Jasna Pecnik, Julie Pinto, Angela Pitter, Sonja Pleynet, Jim Plummer, , Brenda & Yuri Quintana, Jill Radsken, Marisa Ramirez, Julie Redmond, Elizabeth Reilly, James Reilly, Vicki Ritterband, Claire Robertson, Jean Roy, Jennifer Roy, Barb Schiele, Brenda Schwartz, Lynda Schwartz, Allison Sharma, Jerry Shereda, Junko Shibuya, Jan Shoyer, Cynthia Siedman-Willen, Amy Siegel, Robert Siegelman, Bob Silagi, Daniel Solomon, Jane Stackpole Vogel, Ursula Steele, Geoff Stein, Lisa Stevenson, Deb Strymish, Ellen Sumner, Jeffrey Sung, Lisa Svensson, Lauren Taaffe, Kyle Tager, Megan Tager, Charlotte Vanlier, Anke Vorbau, Leslie Williams, Karen Woodrow, Autumn Xu, Barb Zeidan, and Stephanie Zelman. Please pardon any omissions!

We are also grateful to the many Newton North departments who assisted us throughout our planning and event. They include the following:

  • Athletics 
  • Beals House 
  • Dr. Henry Turner & Main Office staff
  • NNHS Custodial Team
  • NNHS Graphic Communications Department, especially Arrianna Proia, Noelle Nicolazzo, and teacher Tom Donnellan, for their help with our logo, invitations, posters and decorations
  • Theatre Ink for loaning us some props and set pieces
  • Sodexo

Finally, a HUGE thank you to Sally Brickell, who supported our efforts and pitched in just about everywhere, whenever needed. Sally, your ideas, problem solving, energy, enthusiasm, thoughtfulness, support, and work ethic helped us make Celebration 2019 a fitting sendoff for our senior class.

I am fortunate to be part of this dedicated, supportive, and generous community—thank you!

Betty Sierra

Chair, Celebration 2019